The next time you find yourself struggling with uncertainty, revisit these questions to help you think productively about the future, and see if your new perspective has an impact on your emotional state, your assessment of threat, and your beliefs about your ability to cope. Most people find that responding to uncertainty biases with more realistic and balanced ways of thinking makes it easier for them to manage anxiety. To produce antibodies, B cells must first be activated. B cells that have never been activated by encountering their cognate antigen are called naive or virgin B cells. An example would be a B cell that can recognize the smallpox virus, but which happens to reside in a human who has never been exposed to smallpox. In contrast, B cells that have encountered their cognate antigen and have been activated are called experienced B cells. There are two ways that naive B cells can be activated to defend against invaders. One is completely dependent on the assistance of helper T cells (T cell-dependent activation) and the second is more or less independent of T cell help (T cell-independent activation). Activation of a naive B cell requires two signals. The first is the clustering of the B cell's receptors and their associated signaling molecules. However, just having its receptors crosslinked is not enough to fully activate a B cell - a second signal is required. This is called the co-stimulatory signal. In T cell-dependent activation, this second signal is supplied by a helper T (Th) cell. The best-studied co-stimulatory signal involves direct contact between a B cell and a Th cell. On the surface of activated helper T cells are proteins called CD40L. If a B cell's receptors have been crosslinked, and if CD40L plugs into (ligates) a protein called CD40 on the surface of the B cell, that B cell will be activated. The interaction between these two proteins, CD40 and CD40L, is clearly very important for B cell activation. Humans who have a genetic defect in either of these proteins are unable to mount a T cell-dependent antibody defense. Organization: Are you planning and setting yourself up for success? Scheduling times for workouts and prepping your meals so you don't cave in to whatever food you lay eyes on first?

Organization is a critical component to your journey. If you're unorganized, you will plateau. You will stop seeing results. And you might be in this situation right now. Maybe you started out strongly, but now that you've "got the hang of things" you no longer put the same amount of effort into organizing your weekly and daily schedules. This mentality is a recipe for a plateau. The more you engage in healthy behaviors, the more likely they will become second nature to you. Organizing should be one of those healthy behaviors. I've been living my healthy life for seven years now and I still take time to plan and schedule my week. I take time to organize my weekly schedule and I still use menus to help me plan for the week. At the start of every week, I write out what all my meals will be, even snacks! I write them out and then create a grocery shopping list according to the meals I've selected for the week. This will keep me focused and organized when I enter the grocery store. The grocery store is one of those places you do not want to enter without a plan! It can be easy to slack on organization when you begin to feel, "I've got this healthy eating stuff down." But you can't slack on preparation. If you're like me, the majority of your life was spent being overweight, and you can't simply ignore your history. I'm healthy because I'm actively choosing to engage in a healthy lifestyle; it does not come naturally for me. I created it and continue to develop it. I make a conscious decision to make healthy choices every single day. Now what did become easier throughout my journey was my ability to make those healthy choices.

When you first start your journey (this might be where you are right now) every single healthy food option is a daily struggle. You engage in a mental battle between your desire to eat unhealthfully and your longing to reach your weight-loss goals. Every time you walk into the staff lounge and see a plate of cupcakes, you struggle to keep your hands off of them. Everyone experiences this to some degree--you're not alone! And I can assure you that it does become easier to overcome the temptations of the dessert menu. You do get stronger the more you feed your healthy side. What I am trying to ensure you understand is that you can't ignore where you've been and where you currently are. You have to continue to develop your healthy-habit mind-set. You have to be intentional in developing your habits and organizing your day. Organization applies to more than just food. You also need to be intentional with your workouts. I once heard a great concept that I added to my own mind-set regarding my workout schedule: treat your workouts like a meeting where you're the boss. Bosses don't miss scheduled meetings. At the start of every week organize your weekly exercise schedule. It can be easy to slack on your workouts when the results start to slow down. But this is the time you need to kick it up even more! So if you're experiencing a plateau right now, think about how many rest days you took this week, or how often you skipped a workout because you "just didn't feel like it today." Now don't get me wrong, rest days are super important! That is actually the next area I am going to address. But it can be easy to take too many "rest days" when you start to feel burned out and underwhelmed with your progress. And too many rest days can lead to a plateau.

Amelia Earhart wanted to be a great aviator. But it was the 1920s, and people still thought that women were frail and weak and didn't have the stuff. Woman suffrage was not even a decade old. She couldn't make her living as a pilot, so she took a job as a social worker. Then one day the phone rang. The man on the line had a pretty offensive proposition, along the lines of: We have someone willing to fund the first female transatlantic flight. Our first choice has already backed out. You won't get to actually fly the plane, and we're going to send two men along as chaperones and guess what, we'll pay them a lot of money and you won't get anything. Oh, and you very well might die while doing it. You know what she said to that offer? She said yes. Because that's what people who defy the odds do. That's how people who become great at things--whether it's flying or blowing through gender stereotypes--do. They start. Anywhere. Anyhow. They don't care if the conditions are perfect or if they're being slighted. Because they know that once they get started, if they can just get some momentum, they can make it work. As it went for Amelia Earhart. Less than five years later she was the first woman to fly solo nonstop across the Atlantic and became, rightly, one of the most famous and respected people in the world.

But none of that would have happened had she turned up her nose at that offensive offer or sat around feeling sorry for herself. None of it could have happened if she'd stopped after that first accomplishment either. What mattered was that she took the opening and then pressed ahead. That was the reason for her success. Life can be frustrating. Oftentimes we know what our problems are. We may even know what to do about them. But we fear that taking action is too risky, that we don't have the experience or that it's not how we pictured it or because it's too expensive, because it's too soon, because we think something better might come along, because it might not work. Self-awareness is the ability to objectively evaluate the self. It's the ability to question our own instincts, patterns, and assumptions. Oiesis, self-deception or arrogant and unchallenged opinion, requires that we hold all our opinions up to hard scrutiny; even our eyes deceive us. On the one hand, that's alarming. I can't even trust my own senses?! Sure, you could think about it that way. Or you could take it another way: because our senses are often wrong, our emotions overly alarmed, our projections overly optimistic, we're better off not rushing into conclusions about anything. We can take a beat with everything we do and become aware of everything that's going on so we can make the right decision. Instinctively, we protect our physical selves. We don't let people touch us, push us around, control where we go. But when it comes to the mind, we're less disciplined. We hand it over willingly to social media, to television, to what other people are doing, thinking, or saying.