Homeland security begins at home

How can I say this without adding to the fear?

These are dangerous times, and not just because terrorism will probably strike again. All of us now know in a new way that evil exists and that we cannot fully protect ourselves from it.

Your office or the local mall could be attacked. Your airplane could go down. Your spouse, your child, your best friend could die at her desk, or in a war. We can be immobilized by potential acts of terrorism: Biochemical warfare. Anthrax. Deadly toxins in the water we drink, the air we breathe. Have you ever felt so assaulted?

The Energy Express column is all about living a healthy lifestyle, and that's a real challenge when so many threats real and imagined have us in their grip. So here's my best advice: Don't get scared. Get active.

Homeland defense begins at home, your home. your plan. Start immediately! Here are three areas to consider:

Build yourself up physically. Stronger is better than weaker when it comes to survival, no matter what kind of emergency presents itself. You know what that means: exercising in some enjoyable way (running, walking, biking, dancing, swimming, etc.) at least three to five times a week, at least 30 minutes a session.

Build yourself up mentally. Your mind and body are linked. Make one stronger and the other will follow. Your Homeland Defense program should include learning to breathe in a way that calms you mentally and energizes you physically. Another mind-strengthening technique you can turn to in troubled times involves meditation, mindfully taking a walk or staring at a candle or repeating a meaningful phrase ("peace") until your consciousness is altered and some kind of clarity is achieved.

Build yourself up spiritually. Discovering your spirit during these troubled times is becoming a national sport. It's the intangible made tangible. It's also different things to different people displaying the flag, washing your neighbor's car or donating blood.

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