Health and Gratitude This Holiday Season

Holidays are mixed blessings where families come together. Laughter and chatter fill the home, but there can also be stressful, especially for those who have a growing business or for those who want to stay fit through the goodies eating time of year. An attitude of health and gratitude this holiday season will go a long way to making it joyful for you and your loved ones.

At Herder and Associates, we focus not only on court reporting and remote depositions but on staying fit. Marty Herder wrote about staying fit through the pandemic and offered tips like going when the gym is less busy, wiping down equipment, and avoiding shared water sources like water fountains.

Health and Gratitude this Holiday Season

Staying active is an important part of a daily routine. Just because it’s the holidays, doesn’t mean you can’t maintain a fitness schedule. In addition to the tips we just mentioned, we offer the following:

  • Don’t overschedule. Whether it’s business or personal, don’t overschedule yourself. This can cause undue stress and a feeling of overwhelm.
  • Be reasonable. Think about how much time and energy you have and make decisions about your physical and mental health. Maybe you can’t make it to the gym, but you can take a long walk. Maybe you can’t make all the holidays parties, but you can send cards.
  • Keep a gratitude journal. Each day, write three things for which you are grateful. This will focus your mind on the positive, rather than the negative. More on this later in this article.
  • Turn off the news and social media. These can be overwhelming. Focus instead on friends and family or giving back to the community. The world will still be there when you get back to the news and social media.  

Holidays should not herald doomsday of losing all your year’s progress. Those dedicated seriously in their wellness journey will tell you that it is a journey, continuous but worthwhile.

All journeys require rest areas to catch your breath, refuel, and double-check that you’re on track.

Reconsider holidays as a changeup of your exercises from physical reps of weights to mental reps of gratitude.

Health & Gratitude Matter

Gratitude is putting life on pause to look around you and be thankful for the small, meaningful blessings in your life.

Several studies indicate actively practicing gratitude improves an individual’s mental space. According to the University of Utah Health, gratitude creates a positive change in the brain, and it motivates the recipients of that gratitude to pass it along. This improvement snowballs from a person’s mental state to what a person does with their day.

Practicing gratitude also leads to benefits such as:

  • Keeping positive emotions present.
  • Embracing good experiences.
  • Improving health, sleep, and immunity.
  • Building strong relationships.
  • Dealing with adversity.
  • Decreasing risk of disease.

Flex Gratitude

 As you’re working out, taking a walk, or reflecting, flex gratitude in these ways:

  • Pay attention to what is around you. Step into nature, not social media.
  • Thank those who’ve helped you through tough times.
  • Surprise a loved one or a stranger with an act of kindness.
  • Be thankful and encourage others to do so.
  • Marty volunteers with the community through Rotary Club. Find what works for you and carve time in your schedule for that.

In this pandemic world, health and gratitude are more important than ever this holiday season. Find what works for you. Identify what and who is most important and focus on them. A long walk or workout will go a long way in shifting your mindset from stress to gratitude.

Stay safe and Happy Holidays!


We are in opposition of the suggested rule changes. Death penalty cases, felony jury trials, and abortion without parental consent cases are just too important to risk to the inherent inefficiencies of electronic recording because life and liberty are inextricably dependent on a clear and accurate record. Please vote against any changes to the current rules.
This new language does NOT require that the courts make an attempt to schedule a certified reporter EVEN IF REQUESTED by a party, it is left to the discretion of the Court, which is contrary to SB1267.
Please submit your public comments in opposition to R-20-20013, Petition to Amend Various Rules of Procedure Related to Creating the Verbatim Record of Judicial Proceedings by NOVEMBER 1, 2021 at:
• The legislative process in passing SB 1267 is undermined and the proposed rules do not follow the Administrative Office of the Court’s own verbatim testimony during the legislative process of the reasoning and intent of SB 1267. The Administrative Office of the Court is attempting to create not a huge disservice to the litigants but to our judicial system. Please vote against any change to the current rules.
• Certified Reporters have ethical responsibilities in taking down testimony and in the production of the transcripts. These areas are instances where people’s lives and liberty are at stake. To rely on electronic recording leaves too many opportunities for error. Please vote against any changes to the current rules.
• The Keeping the Record Committee in 2005 did a thorough study with all stakeholders present regarding hat court hearings needed a certified court reporter to preserve testimony and what the best practices were. Nothing has changed since 2005 that would warrant changing the policy determinations previously made by the Arizona Supreme Court. People’s lives and liberty are at stake, and relying on electronic recording to create the record would be a major injustice. Please vote against any changes to the current
• The SKREM Task Force in 2019 was a rushed process and the resulting Final Report, where some of these suggested rule changes came from, are not in the public interest and are outdated based on newer information and standard practice. Please vote against any change to the current rules.

 Rotary: People of Action

     As we all begin to take a deep breath, we find time to soak in the final statistics of an amazing April of Rotary in Arizona.

     Rotarians held over 60 projects all over Arizona.  Nearly 1,000 lbs. of trash were picked up in the Verde Valley, so much food was raised in Goodyear that American Furniture Warehouse is temporarily storing the excess, and (my personal favorite) food banks and schools were renovated and cleaned up in Chandler! Over 1,000 backpacks were filled with school supplies for Title 1 schools – pencil pouches, masks, hairbrushes, notebooks, so much more! Gardens and parks were cleaned up all over the state! Trees were planted! Hygiene kits were packed! Peace poles were brought to cities. The entire community in Prescott came together to raise money for local food banks.


     Was thinking out of the box always comfortable? Oh hell no.  Was it at times exhausting?   You betcha.  But the tragic ramifications on the impoverished due to the massive shutdowns from Covid screamed for Rotarians to quickly pivot, to step up, to be pressed to the limit.  After 18 months of tirelessly serving our communities during the peak of Covid, this fast-tracked behemoth undertaking was the brainchild of our outstanding District 5495 leadership and District Governor Elizabeth Mahoney, and Southeast Valley leadership of ADG Ed Anderson, as they encouraged, pressed, and supported we club presidents and our boards across the state to propel Arizona out of the starting blocks and rapidly emerge from the global pandemic.

     In an overwhelmingly short time, Rotarians embraced massive undertakings, engaging all generations. We had young children of Rotarians out at food drives and parks, Jr. High and High school Interact students at projects all over the state, Rotaractors in every city of the state, and positive, upbeat Rotarians even into their 90’s enthusiastically jumping into the challenge.


     Throughout history Rotary has stepped in and manned the front lines of every epidemic and catastrophe.  Thanks to selfless Rotarians and those who support us this has been a season to remember, a season to be proud of, a season of Service Above Self.   This is who we are.  This is who we have always been.


     Please, come join us. Your life will never be the same.


     Marty Herder, President
     Chandler Horizon Rotary