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The new Republican administration is taking giant steps to enact campaign promises. For those of us who are staring at Social Security and Medicare benefits in the next several years, the idea that cut-back adjustments will probably be made is unsettling. Some members in the under-50 crowd aren’t even including those benefits in their retirement plans.

Many people say they will work a “bridge job” in retirement to bolster their savings and keep their bodies and minds young and active, but it may be that the new retirement will include keeping the full time job for a few more years.

So, trying to stay healthy with exercise and a sensible, heart-healthy diet just for our bodies and the uncertain years ahead should be a new year’s resolution that will bode well for the future of the youngest and wisest (!) among us.

Which reminds me. Too much stress is a health risk. But, now I know how to battle it. I attended a meeting of the National Association of Women Business Owners Northeast PA (NAWBO) last month, where the guest speaker, Bernadette Kozlowski spoke on the benefits of meditation. Kozlowski is a certified meditation coach who left her teaching position, in biology, to practice and teach meditation.

Her modern meditation, geared to stressed out business people, is not the kind you might think of, with monks chanting and people who attempt it, fighting to clear their minds. The kind Kozlowski espouses has practitioners allowing themselves permission to rest and welcome thoughts.

People who permit themselves this 15 minutes, or 30 minutes, or one hour, find a calm, peaceful mindfulness and over time a brain that is biologically changed, according to Kozlowski and some scientists. (See

“Our bodies want to do this,” she said. And “the benefits in the workplace are real: sick days reduced, increased productivity, clarity and focus.”

A feature on Kozlowski’s Racing Minds Meditation will appear in the next issue of the Business Journal, along with our Top 25 Women in Business.

Next month’s Women in Business supplement will be the 16th year we will have featured the best and brightest among businesswomen in NEPA.

They are nominated by friends, family, colleagues or themselves. Those chosen run the gamut of industries and are active in their communities and, importantly, mentor other women in their lives to be their own personal best. It’s heartwarming to read their features as interviewed and written by Jennifer Butler.

It’s not too early to nominate a Top Woman for next year. Think about it when you allow yourself to rest.

— Christine