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INTUITION

Posted by on Mar 4, 2019 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on INTUITION

For a long time, I didn’t know how to tap into my intuition.  I felt like I was exempt from this inner guide, this sense that so many others had.  I didn’t even know where to begin to access it.

 

Many of us were brought up in a culture that prompted us to look outside of ourselves for answers.  The age of the guru. It was implied that we seek out the advice of our doctors, religious + political leaders, parents, teachers, etc. and internalize what they said as fact.  Once we inhaled certain thoughts/ beliefs from the external, they became part of the programming that prompted our actions, the lens we saw the world through, the inner voice that told us what we should do in any given moment.

 

This culture was based on a hierarchical model where the inner guidance of individuals were squelched as they threatened the status of the guru.  The people that I was looking to/ modeling myself after were operating from this linear, rational way of thinking. Black + white, good or bad, right or wrong.  When you notice yourself thinking in this way, it’s a pretty good indicator that you are NOT open to your inner guide.

 

Not only has the collective not supported the cultivation of our inner guidance, but the rise in technology has actually moved us away from it as well.  Information overload. With all of the positive benefits faster technology brings, it has also brought more mind clutter, dulled brain, a sense of needing to do everything yesterday.  We have access to millions of people, their opinions + their lives with the tap of a just a few keystrokes. We can lose ourselves completely in other people’s worlds… moving us away from our innate intuitive abilities.

 

HOW do we move towards the inner guru?  HOW do we tap into our own inner guidance?  And WHY is it necessary?

 

When I first started teaching yoga, leading retreats + speaking in front of people, I would plan out exactly what I was going to say each time.  I would stick to the plan rigidly and it worked for awhile. It helped me to stay on track and make sure I was conveying what I wanted to. However, after time, I found when I allowed myself space to see what wanted to come through, more people would come up to me and share “that is exactly what I’m experiencing right now”,  “It was as if you were speaking directly to me”, “I literally had this question in my head yesterday”. By trusting that there was a larger part that “knew” better than the human, ego-driven me, it opened up a whole new experience for both me + my clients/ students.

 

The times we are living in are asking for us to develop our own inner guide.  When we listen within, we fall into alignment with our individual purpose, with the gift that only we can share with the world.  When we step into this space in ourselves, it vibrationally sets the tone for others to fall in alignment with their own inner guide as well.

 

I’ll share a few practices that I’ve found valuable, but first… I want to make a few statements that might de-bunk some classic misnomers about intuition.

  • Intuition is not just relegated to a few… we ALL have it (women AND men)
  • It is a sense, like hearing or seeing, that can be developed and refined
  • Intuition doesn’t only have one way that it shows up
  • Information that comes through right brain perception can come in strange ways
  • It is quieter than our emotional drama or reactive thoughts
  • At first we might not understand or know how to see it, so we can dismiss it
  • We don’t receive all of the picture with intuition, mostly just the next step or a few steps ahead

 

Some of the ways intuition can come through… hearing a clear inner voice, feeling body signals (ex: goosebumps or butterflies), seeing signs, symbols (ex:repeating phrases, numbers), the natural world (ex: animals showing up at certain times), through journaling, direct inner knowing, visions, flashes or dreams, smell (ex: whiff of familiar makes you choose certain experience), taste (bad taste in mouth directs you away from), synchronicities + coincidence.

 

Practices to heighten intuition:

  • Create space in your day + mind.  We have 80-90K thoughts per day and the majority of them are the same thoughts we had yesterday + the day before.  As we are inundated with noise from news, media, Netflix, podcasts, advertising, societal + familial conditioning, etc., many thoughts that aren’t even ours bounce around in our sphere.  Thoughts can be loud and that’s a lot of clamoring going on inside. Intuition and inner guidance is softer + more subtle. If we don’t create space, we will have a hard time accessing it.
  • meditate
  • sensitize your body to tap into its signals (ex: yoga, tai chi, walking in nature, mindfulness practice – being present with + tracking sensations)
  • when you receive an intuitive hit, a gut feeling or an a-ha, speak it out loud to yourself or someone else.  Does it resonate? Do you feel expansive or contracted? This is a great way to see whether it is coming from inner guidance or ego.
  • art, listen to music, play, record your dreams, dance
  • do exercises where your limbs cross the centerline of your body (helps turn on both sides of the brain)  
  • practice trusting + following your intuition.  The more you follow it, the more it will show up.

 

Developing + following your intuition requires courage.  

Courage to make different decisions. Many times it guides us AWAY from the status quo or societal/ familial programming inside.  Our minds can freak out at this. Our higher self, deeper wisdom, intuition WANTS us to GROW, wants us to live in more alignment with our soul or higher self.  It invites us to look truly and authentically at our circumstances and make choices that support this growth.

 

If you’re wanting to explore this topic further, I recommend The Intuitive Way, The Psychic Pathway or Second Sight.  Good luck!

 

COMMUNITY

Posted by on Jan 31, 2019 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on COMMUNITY

Who do you consider your community, your tribe?  Who are the people you choose to surround yourself with?

 

People who are part of your group by circumstance + proximity… co-workers, teachers, family AND people you  spend your free time with… friends, significant others, workout buddies, etc.

 

Take a moment to list them out on paper.

 

Medical science demonstrates how critically important social interactions are to our healthy + longevity.  But, it’s not JUST having people around you, is it?  It’s also the QUALITY of the interactions you have with them.

 

Do you welcome new friendships in?  Or is your roster full with friendships from kindergarten that might have run their course?

 

Why do so many of us stay in friendships and relationships that we outgrow?

 

I think there is an implicit belief buried deep in our culture that states we are “failures” at friendship + love if we don’t keep in contact, if we don’t give away our time + energy simply because we’ve known people for a long time.

 

Look at the list of friends you wrote above.  Can you show up with these friends?  Allow all aspects of yourself to be seen?  Do you feel energized after spending time with them?  When they do well or excel at something, are you happy for them?  Do they support your success as well?  Can you hold space around them as they shift and change?  Are they able to flow with togetherness time and lots of space in between without getting their feelings hurt?

 

These are just a few questions to ask yourself as you move through growth and change in your life.  There is no right or wrong answer to these questions, it’s simply a fact finding mission that is beneficial to repeat every few months.  We can hold varying degrees of relationship in our lives… people who we connect with on one level, might fill our need to be supported no matter what, another level might simply be someone to laugh with, yet another level to stimulate our intellect or creativity.  Not everyone is going to check ALL the boxes.

 

However, if we aren’t actively participating in the cultivation of our social sphere, we can fill up with relationships that are old patterns repeating over + over.  When our lives are filled with outgrown relationships, there is no room for new energy to come in, for TRIBE that is aligned with the you who is emerging.  This is true for anything in life.  If we are filled to the brim, nothing else can show up.

 

How do we know when to LET GO + HOW do we do it?  Navigating relationships of any kind can be super tricky.  Many of us weren’t taught how to have these sort of conversations and when it comes to relationship, we can come up against fears about being abandoned, smothered, not seen, understood, etc.

 

Do not simply CUT + RUN.

 

Unless the relationship is abusive, this action will leave you with some sticky stuff to deal with down the road or will pull the EXACT same relationship pattern back in in the form of another person until you learn how to do this in a mindful way.

 

A few navigation tips below…

 

Indicators that it might be time to shift or let go of a relationship:

  • friends getting angry or upset if you haven’t shared every detail of your life with them
  • feeling drained every time you are in contact
  • noticing yourself feeling resentful or getting together out of obligation
  • a repeated nagging feeling that the person is not able to hold it when things go well for you
  • having outgrown the thread that holds you together – shared unhealthy habit (ie, drinking, eating sugar, partying, drugs, complaining, etc.)

 

What to try before you completely step out of a relationship:

  • create some space for yourself to get clear on what your patterns + habits are (when you would normally reach out, pause)
  • journal about what being a friend means to you.  what are your expectations?
  • if you feel depleted after hanging out, give it a good amount of tries (they could be going through shift or you could or simply having a bad month or 2)
  • create space for you in your calendar.  Book dates with yourself – an hour to read, going to dinner, spending time in nature etc. – and hold these times sacred so you can develop your relationship with yourself

 

If after all this, you are ready to step away, do so as gracefully as possible:

  • start extending the length of time in between calls/ friend dates
  • instead of immediately saying yes out of obligation, practice making a date in the future (ex: I am busy this month, but let’s put something on the calendar for next month)
  • remember you are an adult + do not have to explain why you are not available
  • be kind
  • remember that we are all learning + growing at different rates and just because you’ve outgrown something you once shared does not mean you are ahead or better than, you have simply grown apart.
  • notice when you are making up a story of them being in the wrong simply because it’s hard to admit that you’ve outgrown each other.

 

As you clear space, a great practice is to list out what friendships you are wanting to bring into your life… ones that support on certain levels, specific types of collaboration, opportunities to show up fully as your messy self.  Check in with you + remember it might be different than you’ve ever desired before.  This is what the process of life brings… continual opportunities to refine and expand our spheres, to access new parts of ourselves + show up fully.

Good luck my friend!

 

FOUNDATION

Posted by on Jan 3, 2019 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on FOUNDATION

Happy New Year!  

 

2019 will be one of setting foundations + bringing things into physical form.  The last few years have been intense.  Clearing, shadow excavating, movement without always seeing results.  We are getting closer to the end of this massive collective cycle we’ve been in… it completes in 2020.  Can you feel it?
 
The new moon/ solar eclipse this coming Saturday might find us delving into our shadow material yet again and forcing us to really look at it.  My sacred commitment aligns with this collective energy of building structure… it actually started ramping up about a month ago.  I have been hard at work.
 

And then, I went home for a week.  

 
Family time was a mixed bag as it tends to be… full of  joy, grief, laughter, pain + lots of opportunities to simply love threaded throughout.  My mother has late stage Alzheimers + we put her in a home this year.  So, we are in a new pattern + each navigating the shift in our own particular ways.  It has been difficult.
 
Upon my return, the energy of building was back full force.  And I jumped right in, completely ignoring my need to process + be with what the family week had brought. 
 
This moon IS about hard work, responsibility, moving slow + steady towards goals as it is in the Earth sign of Capricorn.  It is certainly helping me focus + aim.  It’s supporting me in showing up with discipline + maturity for my business.  
 
AND just like any other aspect of life, there is polarity… a shadow side to it that I get to work with or ignore… responsibility to the point of feeling anxious, slogging along + dragging my feet when I know there are many things to do, becoming rigid with my time + so much in my left brain thinking that I cut myself off from my creativity.  Forgetting to honor my emotions.  Forgetting to allow myself to be human.
 

When we consciously choose to work with an energy, we get all of it.  

Foundation building AND foundation clearing.  Shadow AND light.  Always both ends of the spectrum and everything in between.

 
Eclipses can leave us feeling destabilized… so setting grounding practices into place are of utmost importance.  Getting on my yoga mat every day, meditation, drinking lots of green smoothies, sleep, connecting with my support team…  I bought a 2019 planner and am writing everything in it… not only my appointments + tasks + goals, but also the lists that seem to end up on post-it notes, random pieces of paper + notebooks everywhere.
 

Once we commit to setting structures into place, then we actually have to DO the work.  

 

This is where the “non-sexy” stuff comes in.  How do you keep yourself going when it’s not feeling enjoyable?  This has been an issue for me in the past as I tend to be more inspired by creativity and sometimes have a hard time bringing my creative thoughts into physical form.  

 
One of the most supportive practices I’ve found is time-blocking. Setting an alarm for 45 minutes + picking ONE task to work on.  Always interesting to watch how many times I want to get up, eat chocolate, open another tab on my computer, multi-task or check my phone.  It requires a sense of humor to continually pull myself back to the task at hand.
 
Holding my time sacred + my task sacred also helps me in moving forward… even when I feel like I’m not.  I write my tasks in my planner at the beginning of the week to keep them top of mind and when I have extra time in my schedule, complete a task before the time disappears as it has a habit of doing.  
 
What helps YOU move forward despite the setbacks + obstacles + life circumstances that derail even the best of plans?  What is your commitment to yourself as we begin a new year?  Are you creating space for integrating experiences AS WELL AS intention + goal setting?
 
Putting one foot in front of the other is important.  Each day, reminding yourself of your goal or your WHY is important.  And, being kind + honoring the parts of you that need to feel and rest is important too… don’t lose sight of this as we begin the new year.
Best of luck to you…xo
 

If you would like support in putting structures + foundations in place, in uncovering your WHY and manifesting your dreams, in finding self-care practices that support you, schedule a FREE CALL with me where we can see if we’re a good fit to work together.

unconditional love

Posted by on Nov 30, 2018 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on unconditional love

this is different than the love many of us have been taught

it feels cold at first.

          But, it’s simply the absence of expectation, drama and old storylines.

To walk through the world with love,

We must love ourselves first,

UNCONDITIONALLY

What does this mean?

Look at all the shadows that are offering themselves up.

How do I do this, you ask?

See who triggers you… who you are judging… they represent a part of yourself that you haven’t owned.

Right now, we’re in a time of deep shadow excavating.

When you feel the small mean voices start in your head, turned towards you or someone else,

Love these parts.  

Listen to them as you would a child.  Don’t make them wrong or bad. Don’t stuff them down or resist them.  Don’t argue with them. Simply listen to them. And, then kindly share with them that you understand AND you are choosing to feed different voices.

Breathe.

Tend to all the parts of yourself that you would ignore.  Instead of running from your fears, name them. List them out on a piece of paper until you run out of space.  Bring them up + out into the open.

Once they are there, thank them for the space they held that is now open + free.  Make friends with them so they don’t rule your actions through shadow.

Breathe.

This is the work of the courageous warrior of these times.

As you practice, one step at a time, you will begin to know what it is to love yourself unconditionally.

And only then… can you love someone so fiercely that you trust they can take care of their own evolution?  Can you be present as they make their own choices and walk their own path?

And remember that the only person you are responsible for saving is yourself?

It bears repeating:

The only person you are responsible for saving is yourself.

This does not absolve us of responsibility.

It is actually the most responsible thing we can do… commit 100% to our own growth, the thoughts we feed, our feelings, our actions, the words we speak.

One of the biggest gifts we bring to the world is our own transformation.

It affects others.  

Profoundly.

Do not discount this.

receive woman receive

Posted by on Feb 5, 2018 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on receive woman receive

Sitting in a circle of women this weekend, the big topic of receiving came up.  How important it is to receive and how many of us women feel more comfortable giving than receiving… or have internalized this as the only acceptable way to show up.  The feminine is compassionate, kind, gentle… think Mother Mary or Kwan Yin.  Yes, she is all this AND that is only a tiny piece of her puzzle.

 

She has many different faces.  She is fierce + courageous + strong + loud + a force to be reckoned with – think Durga or a lioness… DON’T YOU DARE MESS WITH MY CUBS!  She is at home in her body… the mess, the warmth, the juiciness, the sensuality + she feels the pulses and cycles of nature pulling from within – think Wild Woman or Diana.  She is full of emotion + rage + depth + the creative force itself which cannot be contained – think Kali.  She is wisdom + innocence wrapped up in one… she is deeply connected to her intuition, to the timeless guidance of her ancestral line, she sees the interrelatedness of us all, how what we do to one, we do to all.  She is also connected  to the present moment which she meets fresh + with curiosity – think Crone or young Persephone.

 

I bring all of these faces up to remind us that they are there, within each of us.  And the western world has buried them for a thousand years.  We are seeing the resurgence of the feminine + the reconciling of her within our culture as well as within each of us at this time for both women AND men.  Maybe you are seeing it out there, but not inside yet.  Maybe you are feeling the pull, but not sure what to do with it.

 

This is something I started delving into personally about 9 years ago.  The reconciling of my own feminine within.  I had been living in a hyper-masculine form, structure, rationality, competition, etc. in the corporate world + the fitness world… I can do anything you can do man!… while only giving voice to the one aspect of my feminine in relationship… gentle, kind, giving until completely depleted, I had cut myself off from the other aspects of my feminine, had stopped receiving her…. what can I do for you?  My needs?  No, no I don’t have any.  What is it that you need?  Much easier to focus on that because it’s what I know, what I can do something about.  It feels good for me to support you.  I get my self-worth from it.  If I can’t give to you, who am I?  What is my value?

 

You see the flaw in this thinking.  And the split?  And the buried resentment that it causes?  And the pain?  When I started to delve a little deeper within, I felt panic.  There is nothing inside me.  Where am I?  Who am I?  What do I want?  What do I need?  What do I like?  What am I passionate for?  Complete terror even allowing these questions to surface.  Looking at them overwhelmed me + the realization that they pervaded my whole world spun me into depths of self-loathing… for a large amount of the twists + turns of my life, my choices were based on what someone else’s ideas were of right/ wrong or what I would receive from another if I made this choice… praise, love, support, approval, etc.

 

Can you relate?

 

After 9 years of delving + excavating + uncovering + continuing to go AGAINST the strong pull of historical behavior to ignore myself, I see some things pretty clearly.  I realize the self-loathing was not productive, it actually kept me in the same patterns I was stuck in of feeling not relevant.  I realize that it’s MY responsibility and MY job alone to nourish + feed my WHOLE woman.  I have come back to her and I feel the power of my voice + my heart + my body + the integration point within.  I AM HERE + showing up for my life.  I am in love with this woman that I am… every contradicting part.  And at the end of the day, I turn inward for this love that is the source of all.

 

How to take concrete steps towards unearthing your WHOLE woman?  I have a few ideas to get you started…

 

*** ALLOW YOURSELF TO RECEIVE.  Extremely important.  Start small.  When someone gives you a compliment, pause, put your hand on your heart, take a breath in and say thank you.  Refrain from complementing back or rushing to discount yourself (this will be hard).  If that is easy for you, allow yourself to be visible in some way that you are hiding… look people in the eyes and let them look back for longer than usual.  Or let someone pay you what you’re worth.  Do this one thing and you will notice your world begin to shift.

 

*** CARVE OUT ME TIME.  Start with an hour each week.  Schedule it in your calendar + honor this space like you would a date with friend or business appointment.  Just let it be free time for you… no obligations, simply space.  Graduate to a date night with yourself.  Do something for you + you alone… take a bath, read a delicious book, get a massage + don’t rush home, go to dinner + a movie.  Do something that excites you.  You might be going through the motions at first, but do it anyway.  Schedule it + honor your commitment to yourself.

 

*** JOURNAL.  15 minutes in the morning.  EVERY.  DAY.  Just write.  No expectations.  No pressure to make it profound.  No skipping either.  Do this for 21 days minimum.  Don’t go back + read what you wrote.  Let it be a practice for tapping into the creative flow that is within you.  For tapping into your whole integrated woman.  See how your days start to move in a different way.  It might be subtle at first.  Don’t journal for what comes out on the paper, do it for how it affects your life.

 

*** GRATITUDE.  Every night, write 3 things in your journal that you are grateful for.  Make at least one of them about you.  What about YOU SPECIFICALLY are you grateful for.

 

*** SELF MASSAGE.  Purchase oil.  A scent that you like.  Take 10 minutes a day to massage your hands and feet, legs + arms, belly and breasts.  Turn the TV off, step away from the day-to-day.  Do it with presence.  Stay connected to the massage.  Marvel at the wonder of this body you live in and all of it’s systems that work together.  Receive your own touch and notice how your skin tingles afterwards, how your body appreciates it.

 

*** SELF LOVE.  The next time you are overflowing with love + go to spill it out to those in your life, pause.  Look at yourself in the mirror… look directly in your own eyes and say, I love you.  Do this first.  Over and over until it is ingrained within you.  It will feel hard, it will feel silly, it will feel indulgent + you will resist it at first.  Do it anyway.

 

Turn your attention towards yourself woman (or man).  The world is waiting for you to come home.  We need you.  We need ALL OF YOU.  This is the place we must meet + rebuild from.  It is crucial if we are to WHOLE all of the broken systems.  We must first look within + WHOLE ourselves.

“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance” – Oscar Wilde

trust in your unfolding…

Posted by on Nov 6, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on trust in your unfolding…

Butterfly. Totem. Transformation. Not a sweet totem as one would think. The courage it requires to become the butterfly… total annihilation of self one once was, form one once was… into something new and unexpected. No way of knowing what comes next, believing you are dying, again + again. When it’s just the parts of self that have outgrown their forms… And so much brilliance awaits. The butterfly has to cultivate a ridiculous amount of FAITH.

 

It is the feminine way, the way of the darkness, of trusting in the unknown, of allowing oneself to be led without knowing where one is going. Unlike the mythical Phoenix, who bursts into flames before being reborn. Or the snake who sheds it’s skin, caterpillar wraps itself in a cocoon and goes inside. It literally melts from the inside completely. Fluid, liquid, dark, feminine.

 

This has been my life’s path. I see butterflies everywhere… I see them when they are not supposed to be around… flying on the beach next to me in the dead of winter, in the fall forest when it’s cold + no leaves remain on the trees, in the middle of the desert at the end of my vision quest, 3 of them flying into the center of the tribal circle as soon as I sit down and start speaking, looking in my window while I’m sitting on a plane, when I drive my car through the city… everywhere.

 

They speak to me. When I ask for a sign, when I’m at my wits end, they show up. I am grateful… they help me keep my faith in the way I live… in continuing to move forward, having been shown only one tiny part of the next move… I can take one more step and trust that I will be shown the next… and the next… and the next.

 

One of my ex’s used to tease me when I continually looked up the meaning of animals as I came across them. He would say, do you think every ant that crosses your path is here to bring you a message? I would loudly insist YES!

 

There are periods of creativity that I go through where red cardinal shows up. Several literally flying right in front of my car at different points in the same day. I have been bitten by spiders during times of great transition so often that it cannot be mere coincidence.  Songs play with words that answer the question I moments before posed to the Universe… or I’ll drive by a car with a vanity plate that answers.  As the world I have known continues to crumble from the form it once was, I find refuge and solace in these messages from beyond.  I turn towards them.

 

The world around us is constantly sending us signals, signs, messages + more. We interpret them through the forms we carry… friend, woman, daughter, teacher, scientist, executive, athlete, man, etc. and the filters we carry… pro-life, democrat, Catholic, Buddhist, sweet one, perfectionist, the good son, etc. In other words, our masks + our beliefs. Our brains bend reality to prove what we already believe. They use our beliefs + our masks as a way of filtering the massive amounts of data that we receive every second. They prove us right. Kind of like the alogarhythms of FB.

 

Yet, the Universal signs we receive entice us to step outside of these preconceived notions, these boxes we’ve put ourselves in. They come in ways that don’t always make sense… animals, repeating numbers, hearing the same thing several times, synchronicity, dejavu, goosebumps, messages from random strangers, etc. They point to something greater than these small forms. Something that seems like magic to the ordinary brain. They are the windows into the mystery, the unknown, the non-physical realm, the field or matrix, the web of interconnection that surrounds us. They whisper… everything is connected…you are more than simply this physical body, these beliefs lived for a human lifetime, the masks that you wear…there is a Divine order and it has a sense of humor…life doesn’t happen to you, it happens for you…trust… have faith… believe even when it is tough, especially when it is tough, that you are not alone.  Keep showing up.  Tear off your masks and keep showing up.

 

Many times, when I’m at a crossroads, I’ll ask for a sign and the butterflies show up. I feel courage + trust and I take one step towards that which scares me. Or while sitting with my grief or pain, I see the butterflies and feel the expansive nature of my soul. I trust that I am held + can feel the feelings and be with even this. Or when I just have no idea which way is up, they are there and I am reminded of the FAITH I have in humanity, in myself.  I am reminded of the TRUST I have that there is something great that is happening in the midst of all this shadow material we are dealing with individually and collectively.

 

It is easy to get caught up in this world’s fast pace…to allow the beliefs + masks to form a barrier to true connection… to give ourselves a hard time because we feel as if we aren’t where we should be… to compare ourselves to what we see in social feed… to turn against one another… to stay small + isolate ourselves… This is the well worn way. The way that has the strong pull of the collective.  Especially right now when FEAR is the go-to.

 

To step off this path, we must look for our signs + summon up the courage to follow them.

 

Become curious… is there an animal you keep seeing, a word that you hear several times that is plastered across the truck driving by, the same number over and over, goosebumps when someone speaks the truth, someone who keeps coming across your path? If not, try taking a rest from filling your time with news + podcasts + social media + video games + Netflix + busy-ness. Give yourself some space to look around the natural world. Be in silence for a few minutes several times a day. It will come.

 

And when it does, pay attention. Start a notebook, record your dreams. Invite in magic. Peer into the abyss of the unknown. Ask the Divine a question and be open to the way it responds…. it most likely will not be logical or linear. But it will respond. It will nudge you in the direction of your own unfolding one step at a time.  And the more you pay attention to it, the more it will reveal to you.

 

And, from these butterfly wings + breadcrumbs, you will start to find your way.  You will start to feel your inner guide.  You will find your way back to who you came here to be and remember your own brilliance. You will speak your truth.  You will remember we are all connected.  You will be kind to yourself.  And from this place, as we all find our way back, one by one, we will heal this world we are living in.

honoring our rhythms…

Posted by on May 23, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on honoring our rhythms…

A month ago, I led a retreat.  One of the things we talked about was how we, as women, as humans, are connected to nature & connected to the cosmos, not separate from it (as our modern world would try to convince us of).  Similar to the seasons of nature, the phases of the moon, the orbits of the planets, we too have cycles of up and down, in and out, light and dark.  As I share often, I fight my cycles… make myself wrong for needing/ wanting down time.  Must do more.  Must be productive all the time.  Must constantly be working on my business and what I do in the world.  Must be producing.  Must be DOING.

 

Whew.  It’s tiring to live from this place.

 

I end up spinning in unproductive circles in my head, acting from fear instead of being guided from within. Which is even more tiring. One of the things I teach – the importance of taking sacred pause – is also what I must learn over and over again in my own life.

 

While preparing for this past retreat, I honored my cycles in a way I have not prior to a big event before… I gave myself plenty of space in between times of preparing to pause, to enjoy life. I was dedicated to my own self-care as I prepared to guide a group of women through their own self-care: massage, yoga, self-reflection, meditation, time in nature (all the “simple” practices I’m constantly writing about).

 

At the same time, I was also stepping outside of my comfort zone – reaching out to colleagues and friends to promote for me, marketing in a more visible way than ever before, scrapping the material I had planned 3 weeks prior to the event and re-doing it.

 

It paid off, this integrated way of being in my busy time (expanding even!) while also taking care of myself… the retreat was transformative, healing & enjoyable… AND I didn’t feel physically depleted.  Upon return, I intended to take a couple of days off and get back to it – creating content, marketing my next women’s circle, collaborating, etc.

 

My surprise came when I realized another cycle was starting for me… one that I needed to deeply honor as well and not by “doing” outward moving life at the same time.  It was a deeply inward moving cycle… one where the personal a-ha’s were plentiful, and full of much “ouch”.  It lasted a few weeks which were filled with: sleeping (the deep, processing type where you wake up and feel like you were fighting for your life before you dive back in), self loathing, tears, escaping to the mountains, sleeping, being so gentle & kind with myself, did I mention sleeping?!, self-forgiveness, and many moments of awkwardly being in the world stripped of another layer of defense…

 

After a lot of expansion in our lives, there is a natural contraction that happens.  When we inhale, we must exhale.  It is part of the cycle.

 

The contraction lasts longer if I fight it.  And, boy do I. The way my mind fights it is by convincing me that I’m not doing anything. I start resisting what is actually happening and convincing myself that I need to be somewhere else. Fortunately, a mentor pointed out to me that the inner work is “doing” a lot.  Showing up and being in the messy human part of life without running away, seeing clearly where I’ve been running patterns that have ultimately hurt myself or others, seeing where I’ve thought I was better than others or acted out because of the belief that I was not worthy… the work of looking at these things as they come up and kindly, gently reminding myself that I did the best I could at the time with the tools I had. This is hard work for me, this being human… and making mistakes… and admitting to them… and loving myself through it all.

 

As I come up out of it at this time, I see that actually there was also much that happened naturally – a few collaborations have been formed and new projects started, the women’s circle already has several participants signed up, in meditation, I can feel the wisps of content that is in there wanting to be written when the timing is right, some areas in my life where I have completely ignored my own boundaries have been course corrected.

 

My life is unfolding and I am trying to flow with it, not to fight it, to accept this moment now… not to force it, to simply BE the witness… it’s an art… and not one that seems to be promoted in the mainstream.  The dance of honoring our cycles, our rhythms, of opening up to the unfoldment of our lives.  Of letting go of the tight grip on the reigns and TRUSTING that we will know when to slow down or speed up.  And of simplifying.  I feel myself coming up into the light and want to run & jump & over-commit.  Instead, I breathe and observe this too.

 

Two beautifully written books that have helped me: Sabbath by Wayne Muller & Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. They both stress the importance of honoring our cycles and spending time in stillness, space & quiet as a necessity vs a luxury.

 

And, of course, I couldn’t do this life thing without my team of  support.  Part of my self-care is to see them continuously, NOT only when in crisis mode.  Over time, this has built a foundation for me to firmly stand on when I find myself in another cycle or when I step off the crazy merry-go-round of 24/7 productivity.  We humans are full of rhythms, of cycles, just like nature, and if we don’t honor them, we will move further away from the things we most crave – integration, balance & a rich, meaningful life.  Much love to you wherever you are in your cycle.  Be kind to yourself.

 

 

inspired from within…

Posted by on Jan 31, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on inspired from within…

“Each one of us must find peace from within.  And for peace to be real, it must be unaffected by outside circumstances” – Ghandi 

There is much bubbling to the surface these days, especially here in the states. Lots of fear, action and reaction, emotion, and a desire to affect change, to be part of the solution, to take Action in Service to the HIGHEST GOOD!!!

Ummmm, what IS the highest good?  I’m not sure I know.

Yes, I have my ideas of right and wrong that I can list for you here and we all agree there are certain things that just don’t seem human, yet… do we really know what the bigger picture is?  How can we show up and support the collective change that is taking place without adding to the old stories?  How can we move forward from a place of conscious response instead of fear-based reaction?

I do know…

that my foundational practices are of utmost importance right now:

  • meditation
  • getting into my body
  • breathing
  • connecting to kindness and compassion towards myself and others
  • remembering that we are ALL evolving souls, no exception. 

 

And though some seem lost, we are each most responsible for how we individually show up in our lives, not responsible for convincing someone they are wrong.  I have had several opportunities in my own individual sphere to turn towards the new way of being…

Just yesterday, a differing of opinion in a business relationship that might greatly affect my bottom line.  My belief that the other person is stuck in the “old” lack mentality and I am coming from the “new” way of oneness & abundance (implied in this is that they are blocking me from moving forward fully).  I’ve been here before in this relationship.  In past similar experiences, I felt lots of emotion and got entangled in the pointing fingers game that led absolutely nowhere.  However, if I am truly to live what I am preaching, I must let go of the thought that the other person is doing anything to me at all.  I must release them to feel what they feel and believe what they believe and turn towards my own experience.

When I do that, let go of the story and truly connect with my breath & body, there is something different going on.  In the greater scheme, I can see that this is a gift.  It’s actually propelling me into taking the steps for myself that I’ve been moving toward, but stopping just short of actualizing.  It’s actually pushing me into showing up fully, going inside, getting clear & taking action that feels in alignment with my center. 

Yes, there are parts of me that want to make a story of how I’m right and this person is wrong.  They are desperately trying to grab my attention and pull me in.  I cannot push those parts away or tune them out.  What I do instead is bring my awareness to them and have very kind conversations with them: “dear, we are all here doing the best that we can with what we have.  I hear you and your frustration.  I breathe with you.  How about let’s turn our attention towards what we can do?”  Several times I do this (and it’s been a practice over many situations and many times).  Then the words to my heart: “stay open, do not close in fear.  Stay open”. 

This time is different… 

The whole process takes a matter of hours instead of days or weeks.  I feel clear enough to see what gift this is bringing and strong enough to take action without unnecessary force or need to control.  I can breathe and even smile.  I bow my head in gratitude to grace and the opportunities that my life has provided me with to strengthen these muscles.  Every time, not knowing what gift the struggles, trials & tribulations were bringing me.  I see the fruition of this one and am amazed. 

Ultimately, I believe change starts from within.  Does this mean we don’t take action, of course not.  It means we take a closer look at our own lives.  See where we are playing out smaller versions of what is happening in our media.  What about the relationship with our families?  Our co-workers?  Our friends?  What about the most challenging of them… how do we handle ourselves in conflict with our very personal sphere? 

Bringing the light of awareness to, staying present with and shifting our “old” responses go a long way into shifting the way our world looks.  This takes practice and lots of gentle patience.  Don’t mistake this for weakness… it requires tremendous amounts of courage and strength to look within and work with ourselves in this way.

I think there are many beautiful things happening right now and many terrible things happening. And from great chaos, a new way will be born.  Will that be a better way?  I certainly hope so.

 

 

let go & begin again…

Posted by on Nov 18, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on let go & begin again…

Letting go. More layers. Amazed at how much this process of emerging/ becoming/ self realizing is about letting go. Catch & release. Unearth & release. Enjoy & release. Resist, fight & finally surrender. Let more go.

 

This was important, well now it’s not. These were your ideas, well now they’re not. You believed this, now release it. It seems the leading up to is harder than the actual moments of letting go. The fears – who will I be without this mask, who will I be without that friend, who will I be without that belief to swing around like a sword, who will I be when all the layers fall away?

 

I have been building these muscles for quite awhile. My own process of letting go started consciously 15 years ago with the beginning of my first divorce. Who was I if I wasn’t a wife? Who was I if I wasn’t living in this house in the suburbs pretending that I knew what I was doing? Who was I if I actually listened to this voice deep inside that whispered loudly “LEAVE”? I did leave and it was a very painful time. While I let go of some of the masks I had been wearing, I didn’t know how to look at many of the feelings that were coming up so I buried them deep inside.

 

Spirit gave me the opportunity to let go more a few years later when I got married & divorced for a second time. Who am I if I’m not part of a couple, a team? Who am I if I’m not telling someone else how they can become better? This led me to 2 years of not dating and the discovery of a thread that led to answering these very questions later. Who am I without my possessions? I left a large part of my physical stuff with him and the house we so lovingly poured our combined effort into. I started to see the correlation between physical stuff and the clutter inside of me. And how the physical stuff was many times a representation of the boxes I was holding myself in & identifying with.

 

The next major letting go came when I left my “successful” corporate career. Who am I if I don’t have a business card or a title? Who am I without the glorification of busy – needing to check my Blackberry several times a minute to respond immediately to the television stations and advertisers needs? It took me the better part of 2 years to stop answering the question of what do you do with, “well, I was in advertising for 15 years until recently…”.

 

Since then, I’ve had more opportunities to let go than I can even list – my house that was not affordable on a yoga teachers salary, ideas about what healthy is, so many people & relationships that have outgrown their forms, a business partnership that was no longer in alignment with my values, groups I’ve been part of, furniture, clothes & loads of physical stuff – I’m down to what can fit in a 10X15 storage unit, ideas of what successful really means, beliefs of what it means to be a daughter, and on & on.

 

Why do we cling so tightly to our identifications?

 

When we finish grade school, we know that it’s natural to move on to high school. Why do we assign different meaning to people, groups & experiences in our adult lives? We throw the expectations of our child self onto them… you are my friend, so you owe me your undivided loyalty… you are my leader or my church, so you must be perfect… you are my partner, so you must never leave me for your own life… you are an object that brings me much joy, so I must cling tightly to you…

 

All of these things we hold onto become the cage of comfort that we lock ourselves in, the boxes that we tightly wedge into to feel as if we have control over our lives. Eventually, we hear that voice inside saying “LEAVE”. We fight it, make up excuses, forget that we have the key in our pocket. All that fighting eventually gives way to surrender if we are lucky… weary of the internal battles, we throw ourselves on the floor begging for something different.

 

Surrender has become one of my spiritual practices.

 

I’ve come to understand that this process DOES get easier and it is a natural part of living a fully integrated life. Just like we lift weights to build our physical muscles, we can let go several times a day to build our muscles of detachment. Each time we do this, we peel another layer off and allow more of the essence of who we are to show up. This part of us is brilliantly divine and a gift to the world. When we tap into it, we start to align with our purpose and what we came here to do.

 

These times of change are supporting us in each doing our individual work to clear, to let go. 

 

What can you work with today? Start with something small & physical. Clean out your junk drawer. Clean out your closet and donate to charity.  Then move on to something more.  Clean out your head by journaling – write 2 pages each morning for 3 weeks before you do anything else.  Don’t edit or judge, just write.  These muscles will strengthen.  You’ll start to remind yourself of where you hid the key to your cage… and maybe set yourself free to begin again.

wild pendulum swings & energy management…

Posted by on Oct 13, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on wild pendulum swings & energy management…

I LOVE THE FALL! This time of the year, I tend to find an internal burst of fresh energy. Something about this particular change of season that really works well with my constitution. Interestingly, this year, I know the boost of energy isn’t just from the switch of seasons.

 

It has a different quality to it, a smooth, steady and sustainable feeling vs a quick, take advantage of this before it disappears feeling. This year, I’m actually ENJOYING my life more AND I’m working harder than I have in quite awhile.

 

The work I’ve been doing is personal & purpose related… unearthing long buried fears and not stuffing them back down, looking clearly at patterns that don’t serve me anymore, consciously choosing not to pick them up when they are offered as an option, delving deeply into my business, walking the path of the entrepreneur and all the opportunities that provides for growth. It continues to require a lot of courage.

 

My ego would have me believe that it requires too much energy to shift the old patterns and why don’t I just walk through life how I’ve always walked through – wildly swinging from one extreme to the next, milking the high energy so much that the lows are really low. Thank you very much ego, however I am now living from a place of detachment (and I do not mean coldness… I mean, not getting sucked into my own drama).

It takes even more energy to be:

  • attached to my own stories – this is how the world is – people aren’t to be trusted
  • attached to other peoples stories – I’ll avoid looking inside if I can help you with your problems
  • living in the coping patterns I developed as a child -adrenaline junkie anyone? procrastinating until the last minute because “I work better under pressure” – holding myself to unrealistic, made up standards that I think everyone expects me to meet

 

During periods of shift in our lives, management of energy is crucial if we are to align with our higher selves & move into the newer, healthier, more sustainable way of living. We are in the midst of a paradigm shift, DEEP change on a collective level that is also affecting us individually. If we work with our own energy, we can better be able to support the collective shift happening in a conscious way.

 

Some of my tips in managing wild pendulum swings:

  • Stop energy leakage – get really clear on what drains energy and what adds to it – stop saying yes to everything & everyone.
  • Let go of worrying about what other people think when you put yourself and your passion/ purpose first (this takes much practice to master)
  • Learn your body’s signals for YES & NO – when my body says no, I take it seriously & stop what I’m doing even if my brain is still pushing me to move ahead (just one more task off the list, email, phone call, etc.).
  • Put structures into place that work – for me, it means scheduling TO-DO tasks AND also playful tasks – like watching an episode of my favorite show on my computer, taking an hour long walk at the park in the middle of the day, or having Saturday mornings off, no technology. If I only do the TO-DO tasks, I fall out of balance & start to self-sabatogue by binging on the other end and am in a wild swing before I know it.
  • BUILD LOTS OF SPACE – daily, weekly & especially around important energy expenditures (milestones, big events, personal & professional).
  • Do something completely new that you are not skilled at – this prevents me from holding myself to those ridiculously high standards and helps me to find my sense of humor… I also make a complete fool of myself on a regular basis.
  • Build the plane as you fly it – prepare, prepare again & then let go and trust you’ve got it.
  • See that both the lows AND the highs bring gifts – when I stop fighting the lows, they become richer and I move through with a deep appreciation for the human & the divine in me.
  • Practice gratitude & kindness – treating myself as precious, pausing to put hand on my heart & breath in the good times AND the bad, helps me to integrate it all.

 

I wouldn’t be where I am now without my many mentors & guides who have helped me in learning to recognize when I’m caught “in it” and how to cultivate my own discernment/ zoom out lens for fresh perspective.

 

I also wouldn’t be here without an unwavering commitment to myself and taking 100% responsibility for my life. This is where the foundational practices of meditation, yoga, self-care, self-love & kindness, sitting with & breathing have been invaluable. It takes 21 days to change a habit – many times in the shifting of one habit, we see the threads of other habits that are intertwined with that one.

 

When navigating the waters of transformation, oh, such as releasing a lifetime of deeply embedded pendulum swinging patterns, it takes a bit more time & a few more threads to unravel…

 

If you’re feeling overwhelmed in this task, schedule a free 20 minute discovery session with me to see if working together is a fit.