Today I am not afraid to indulge in all of the different aspects that the buffet of life has to offer me.
I teach my kids so often to choose a variety of food, a variety of colors and a variety of textures on their plates.
A variety in ways of THINKING is essential as well BUT let's get back to the food.
Some of the best times in my life when I have lost the most weight or felt the most healthy have been when I have varied my diet. Whether I was mixing together Weight Watcher's, Atkin's or the South Beach Diet--I picked and chose what worked for MY body. I needed to trust my own physiology. Just like everyone, I am completely unique.
In life everyone is special and unique. As much as there may be dieting and nutrition gurus out there, I am the best guru for my own body. My health, my body will guide me.
If I don't feel good, I will examine how to adjust my diet.
The same is true with what I consume in politics, religion and in community. I need the variety of everyone's different perspectives. It helps me grow to expose myself to things that I may not have tried before, things that I may have considered ICKY in my past.
It's so important to grow and mature and admit that not only do you need to eat your vegetables but they actually may not be as bad you thought. Those thoughts that you may have considered CRAZY in the past may actually have some merit.
Just because some ideas may be coming from someone we don't like doesn't mean we shouldn't listen, maybe we shouldn't so easily dismiss alternate ways of thinking. Maybe we should really examine whether their ideas may actually help us and the community around us.
Diversity, variety, compassion, authenticity, honesty...in what you eat, in what you think, in what you ALLOW into your life.
Grow, by admitting that Variety is necessary.
No matter how out of focus life around you may seem...you have the power to center and choose where you want to aim your intentions. Your energy can sometimes be scattered to far too many worries. You may feel depleted, overloaded, incapable of keeping up with all that life is asking of you. Well, that is the way I am feeling right now.
Talk about scattered - I just realized that it has been over a year since I posted on this website.
Hello! Here I am...last night was another lunar eclipse - it is now January 2019. I wrote the words below a few months ago but did not finish and post.....here you go...
It is the beginning of August right now. We just experienced a lunar eclipse, mercury is in retrograde, the planets are causing energy to pull us in odd directions. I am not going to evaluate the planetary shifts that are happening here. Sometimes it really doesn't matter the cause of our unease. Well, it helps a little to know there is an external reason BUT mostly it helps to know that I'm NOT the only one experiencing fluctuations in energy.
It is now January - If you are interested in learning about my tool, my saving grace, my go to in times of imbalance please come back for a future more detailed article soon. I will share details of the Chakra Dyana meditation that I teach in local workshops. In this new year I plan to provide more helpful content here for you.
I will also share my perspective on how organized religion can still have great value. Soon we will be in the Easter Season. Feel free to review the prior posts on this blog for insights on religion and spirituality.
Truth never expires but we grow and change enveloped in our common human experience - no matter your religious traditions, color of your skin, location on the planet or financial background - we are all connected!! Compassion, diversity, respect - leaving a reflection of beauty wherever we go.
For now - in this New Year of 2019 please know you are not alone!!
Everything you consume is a part of who you are! I hope that what I am putting out here on social media will help elevate those that come into contact with my content.
I hope you enjoy one of my newest videos that I'm including here for you. Please feel free to subscribe, comment and share if you enjoy the channel. As is the case on all of my content, I am sharing full range - watch out for the titles and I hope you enjoy the journey watching my technological skills improve.
What have I been busy doing in the last year? Check Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Medium, LinkedIN and my audio show STRONG BODY STRONG SOUL.
Search for STRONG BODY STRONG SOUL on whichever platform you enjoy the most. Sometimes I'm sharing meditation, motivation, sometimes interviews about meditation. Sometimes I'm funny and sometimes I'm profound - always with the intention of raising the vibration of peace and joy in this world.
I love encouraging people to keep their energy flowing so that they can maintain the connection with their core - whether that is in a spiritual/emotional sense or a personal training sense.
I love using my voice to resonate with people all over the globe and I love being able to train clients via computer all over the globe as well - in either capacity - I am here for YOU!
I love you! Thank you for stopping by this site. I'm looking forward to sharing more here soon.
What's your idea of the difference between guilt and shame?
Here are some of my thoughts:
😳guilt is an act you get caught for. You are forced to say sorry, go to jail, peers see you and point fingers. "You should be ashamed of yourself" -aha but are you? No one knows but you.
😌Shame is what you feel regardless of whether anyone knows about it or not - you know it's bad and you carry it with you, self hatred and judgment can erupt.
I've posted this photo to illustrate my point. This food could feed a small family. These are the remnants of our group the other day AFTER we were done. We couldn't take it with us so it went in the trash.
We were guilty of taking too much food (it was a buffet) we looked at eachother sheepishly and left. We were all equally guilty. But I feel ashamed of this and hope to plan better in the future. Some people never get to that shame - they are guilty but move on with no remorse. I certainly am not perfect but in this instance I feel this point so clearly.
I think perhaps we need shame to force us to be better. I'm not talking about Shame that one person does to another (shaming a child in front of friends) but I am talking about that subtle shift of awareness that yes you wasted food, time, money or love and you feel bad about it in order to be better next time.
How do you get rid of shame? Awareness then forgiveness and improvement
Do you ever feel overwhelmed by all the things that need to get done? Do you lose sleep in the middle of the night thinking about what you forgot to do or worried about what is going to happen the next day? How are you going to squeeze it all in? Do you have a hard time NOT thinking while you are trying to meditate? Or actually not being able to find time to meditate or slow down at all because you have way too many things to do?
I think most of us would answer "YES" to many of these questions. There are a zillion things floating around in our heads...so many choices...so many unknowns.
One of my favorite things about Chakra Dyana Meditation is that we use a very simple mantra. We use a word that we all focus on at the same time. When we use our voice to focus on the one sound that we are making it forces our mind to tune in to that one thing to the exclusion of all others. That is the point. Thoughts will tend to come through while we are meditating but instead of trying to STOP these thoughts from coming I suggest we actually allow them to come without engagement.
Do not struggle to stop them because the very act of trying to stop them from coming will distract you more than the thoughts themselves.
If you think ABOUT the thoughts you may have an inner dialogue which may look like this:
"I will not think about other things during meditation. I will clear my mind"
"Oh no! here comes that thought again"
"Why am I thinking about that again?"
"I will not think about that any more"
"Here comes that thought again"
"Why can't I stop thinking about that?"
"Is anyone else thinking about other things?"
"What did she say?"
"Am I doing it right?"
"There is that thought again"
"I won't think this much next time"
"I will try harder next time...it didn't work"
May I suggest an alternative? What if when a thought comes you practice WATCHING the thought go by? Do not engage with the thought. Do not analyze what the thought is doing there or what you can do to prevent it. Let it be. Let it float by. The thought has nothing to do with your meditation. It has nothing to do with the time you have gifted to yourself for peace, calm and connection that you desire.
The more you step back and let the thoughts wash over you and leave without engagement the less they will come to you. Your mind will get used to trusting that you will get back to those thoughts later - when you are ready. They have no place in the time that you have set aside for yourself. They will leave if not entertained. Those thoughts will get bored and learn their lesson - there is no place for them in your meditation time. Do not worry if they come to you, pay them no mind - give them no part of your attention.
Once you are able to grasp this idea perhaps meditation will be easier for you. Perhaps instead of struggling to clear your mind and keep "trying" to meditate, you will actually be able to clear your mind and open to the wholeness that you seek. Perhaps your connection will be so strong that you will not need to struggle to find the time to keep "trying" to meditate and you actually will meditate.
The goal of meditation is to allow your mind to be still. You are not looking for anything....there is no voice to be heard, colors to be seen, vision to be felt...if these things happen, so be it, but if you "try" to get to any of these things more thoughts may come in order to distract you.
Meditation gives you a brief reprieve from engaging with your thoughts so that you can come out revitalized and ready to handle your thoughts in a productive way. That is the goal. Give yourself a break so you can tackle those thoughts when you are ready. Your ability to stay clear will become easier with practice and the stronger your connection with your own truth will be, this peace and connection will last even longer between meditations. It's a beautiful benefit - the deeper the meditation perhaps the less frequent you will need to do it. How efficient is that?
I am really getting comfortable and expanding my philosophy of combining the meditation and physical training part of what I do.
I am hoping that the way I explain things to people really gets through to them and helps them gain the clarity they need to figure out how they need to move forward.
Whether it's to mentally get past a physical challenge or an emotional/spiritual one.
Be Brave! Go beyond what you ever imagined yourself doing. Don't let yourself be stagnant in your way of thinking about life. You can go beyond your expectations of yourself!
The other day I was with a friend who is many years older than I am. I noticed, as I often do with this particular friend, that she is scared to do certain things.
She hesitates and takes the long way around in order to avoid certain steps or declines to do certain activities that she deems "dangerous". She has it in her head that she is "old" and is in danger of falling and breaking a bone.
I try to talk her through movements. I try to encourage her to pick up her feet so that she can clear that obstacle in the parking lot but often she prefers to walk around an uneven area. We all know you can't make someone do something that they don't want to do.
As a personal trainer, I can help people get physically stronger. But a client will not step up to a challenge unless they have the inner strength to move forward. No matter how great a personal trainer is, the only way training can be successful is if the client is "all in".
If you are at a spot in your life where you'd like to change your outlook, I really encourage you to get outside of your comfort zone. Perhaps meditation could benefit you but only try it if you are really open to it. I'm happy to stick with the physical stuff only if that's what my client is interested in.
This Easter Season began as a hunt for me. For some reason my perspective on nature shifted. So many times I would look at the world and see interesting ways of finding hidden gems amidst the branches or petals around me. It began with that first curious shot of the moon in a random tree and then it blossomed from there. : )
Shifting your perspective and allowing yourself to be open to new possibilities can be amazing. Nature has so many gifts to offer if you stay attuned to it. Take some time to look around you today. Stop and smell the roses. Notice the cloud formations above you. Close your eyes and feel the wind on your face or the warmth of the sun. Touch that soft petal that you pass by as you walk to your car. Touch your own hair. You are a part of nature too!
Enjoy my perspective, here are some of the highlights of the season for me.
You won't even believe what I was thinking when I took this photo. I was on the side of the road at 7 a.m. in the morning, walking through knee high grass trying to capture beautiful spring flowers.
I saw some spider webs clinging to the moist undergrowth and thought I would hone in on a particular web to try and get a cool shot. I am not even kidding you, as I stepped gingerly through the greens I began talking to the undergrowth in my head. "Don't worry little spider, I won't step on you." I truly was stepping along trying not to do harm.
Only after I got home and zoomed in on this shot did I discover the planet I had caught on camera.
I just love this photo so much! I love the little stars reflected in the droplet of water. I love the way it dangles there so delicately. I love the way it seems to have been giving me messages, pleading for safety.
It reminds me of Horton Hears a Who. It reminds me that this earth needs our help. As I examine this photo more closely I wonder if that is my reflection I see in the light. It reminds me of how precarious life is, how delicate the balance.
This photo reminds me that we are all living on a little dew drop floating in space. We are all in this little bubble we call earth. It reminds me that we all can be sending out messages pleading for safety and love to something greater than ourselves. It reminds me how small we all are, yet so loved.
I don't imagine that the caterpillar spends a lot or time worrying what it is to become. The more you focus on what you want to be the more you can lose sight of who you really are.
One of my favorite necklaces has a plaque on it that reads "be strong". 💪
It does not say "get" strong. That would imply that I am not enough where I am right now.
I must grasp and reach for something that is in the future, that I do not "possess". Yes, we must earn our way - work hard to improve in whatever we are seeking BUT we shouldn't overlook the beauty in the state we are in within this very moment.
My necklace does not read "stay" strong. That would imply we must still the passing of time. Freeze like a dog when it's owner yells for it not to exit the front door or follow their human across the street. How boring would life be if we stayed in one spot?
We do NOT want to "stay" stagnant in our physical bodies or in our energetic bodies. Our hair is growing, our cells are changing. So true - we can not "stay" happy all of the time or "stay" depressed continually.
We NEED to constantly shift and flow through our lives. No matter how high the highs or low the lows we all know they will serve their purpose - bringing us to a greater understanding of ourselves.
The only thing we can rely on in life is CHANGE. We are constantly evolving - embrace that truth and cooperate with the flow of life - joy is yours!
I can't stress to you enough my firm belief that it is not my job to tell anyone else what to do. It's just so true!
Awhile ago I wrote a post called "Only You Can Turn the Switch On" - the same idea.
As a personal trainer I am qualified, in fact obligated and happy to tell you what to do to be safe and effective with your physical workouts.
Don't get me wrong - I love telling people what to do, just ask my family. But from an emotional standpoint I can NOT tell you what to do. It is completely up to you to get off that sofa or throw out those chips.
Sure I can come to your house and get in your face about it or go through your pantry or take you to the market to buy healthy food but once I leave - chances are you will revert to old habits.
It is my job to help you figure out how to dig deep and be your own coach, your own boss, your own motivator.
I love spending time with you and encouraging you but I can't possibly be with you every minute of the day. You need to fill that role for yourself and YOU CAN. You have the strength within you - you just need to take the time to get in touch with it,, admit it is there. Be AWARE of your own power and trust it.
I can help you figure out how to do that but then it's up to you. I'm so excited to watch you grow! So excited to be part of the process of encouraging you to stretch to your fullest.