For The Soul · Thoughts

A Little More Love, A Little More Kindness

“It’s not about what you go through in life, it’s about how you go through it.”

I’ve heard this a few times this week, as I have struggled with matters of the heart. I don’t know whose quote it is that has struck a cord with me. Nonetheless, I feel it is an important reminder. I needed to be reminded of this. Noted Universe. 🙂

Struggles are inevitable – as long as we’re here in our human bodies. What’s important is what we do when these times arise in our lives. My intention in these times is to be a little more loving to myself, a little more kind. Some times I can lose sight of this though. Some times I want to rush the process. Some times things are emotionally more difficult than my logical mind thinks they ‘should’ be. Some times I’m upset than I’m even upset about whichever particular thing. All of these are just judgements and critiques that don’t have a place in our healing journey. But again, we’re human. Awareness is key.

All of time though, I know I just need be with myself. Allow myself to be exactly what I need to be. There’s no specific, perfect way we’re suppose to go through things. No fool proof process. But what I do know is that even in the times I lose sight of my intention to be extra loving and kind to myself, we what resist persists. So I work hard to not stay there for long. Surrendering to the emotion and moment, and remembering that ‘x’ is happening to give me something to learn. That this is for my highest good. That I’m a creator of my reality. That although I may not control everything that happens in my life, the one thing I can control is my reaction, the meaning I apply to things, and that beating myself up along the way is not helpful.

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Like the quote above, it’s HOW we go through these moments. We do have a choice. Even though I’ve been there where I feel like I don’t. I get you if you’ve ever felt like that. I can’t remember which spiritual guide I follow gave the analogy of talking to and being there for ourselves in the same way we would for a child. This is powerful. This really helps with the how part.

And the how isn’t necessarily keeping your shit together through the whole process. Quite the opposite at times. For me this week, it was putting on my favorite acoustic music and crying. Like full on “ugly cry.” It was also putting my phone away for a night, ordering my favorite Indian food, and falling asleep early on the couch and rolling into bed at 2 a.m. Other times, it’s been less “messy” looking, for lack of a better word. Like going to yoga. Or having a solo dance party. Or having an extra glass of wine with dinner.

I believe it’s important to have our intention to be to love ourselves a little more and be a little more kind, and do whatever it is that we feel led to do from that space. We can’t go wrong or in other words, put ourselves on a path to more pain when we’re coming from that place. When we lead from our hearts, I believe we will make decisions that are in our best interest. Keeping in mind that the things that are best for us, won’t always feel that way right away. But like I said in this blog post about what I learned and was reminded of last year, I will forever be a Student of Life. That the goal isn’t to get it perfect every time. The point that we should focus on is that we’re trying. That we’re doing our best with what we know at that time. Each and every one of us. And no one knows better than us what is best for us.

Big love,
S.

Side love note: Thank you for being here! I’m honored you, the reader, feel my little place on the Internet is worth checking out. Deep bow in appreciation.

For The Soul

This Is The Year I Learned…

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This is the year I learned vulnerability doesn’t make me weak and holding it together all the time doesn’t make me strong.

This is the year I learned to say, “No” without explaining myself, apologizing, or feeling guilty.

This is the year I learned to speak fully from the heart, without fear of how my words will be received. That there are some things that just need to be said, for myself first and foremost.

This is the year I learned to have the courage to accept no less than the best in love.

This is the year I learned that the more of myself I share – unapologetically – with others, the closer my relationships become. That allowing myself to be seen – raw and unfiltered – gives people the courage to do the same.

This is the year I learned I have a lot of love to give, more than I realized, that at times overflows from my heart. Knowing that I didn’t get to this place without loving myself first and foremost. Always.

This is the year I learned to truly love, and appreciate, the profound magnificence of my physical human body. Lumps. Bumps. Perfect imperfections and all.

This is the year I learned it’s possible to have the best and the worst year, simultaneously.

This is the year I was reminded of the importance of being in the now moment. That all we ever have is this moment, right here, right now. Not yesterday. Not tomorrow. Not 5 minutes ago. Not 5 hours from now.

This is the year I learned the freedom and surrender in going with the flow. In the uncertainty of not knowing what’s going to happen next. In the letting go of outcomes. That the meaning of being present is following our joy.

This is the year I learned that people who are meant to be in your life will be. That some will come and go, and come again, or maybe not. And it’s ok, and all part of the process of life.

This is the year I learned that having a big heart means big heart break. That caring deeply means potential for deeper pain. But it also means bigger, deeper love. The kind that makes it all worth it. There’s a knowing that what I put out will be given back to me.

This is the year I learned that when challenges arise, and life gets tough, it’s more than ok – it’s necessary – to reach out to people. That people genuinely want to help in the best way they know how. And that’s it’s okay not to be okay all the time, and to admit it out loud.

This is the year I was reminded that life ebbs and flows, and that our job is to ride the wave. Not to swim against it. And that some times when we ride the wave, we need to let ourselves be engulfed by the waves – feel fully and deeply – so we can resurface with renewed perspective. Trusting ourselves that we will find a way to resurface with our head held high above the water.

This is the year I learned I will be a Student of Life, all the days of my life. That my job is to find the silver lining among the darkest paths and to spread light every opportunity I get. Like a butterfly emerging from it’s cocoon – time and time again – because I’ll never get it done. Thus…Life.

Big love to you,
S. xo

For The Soul · Music · Thoughts

I Will Leave The Light On For You

This evening I have an urge to write. Not with any specific topic or idea in mind; nothing has particularly inspired me to write. I just feel a strong urge to get words out on the keyboard. I’m happy to see you’re coming along for the random ride.

This full moon energy coming up on Saturday has been intense this week so far. As time passes, I have become more and more sensitive to energies of all kinds – people, the moon, places etc. At times, it feels like walking through molasses being out in public with all the different energies swirling around me, and what some times feels like through me. Sometimes – this is a great thing. Other times – overwhelming and exhausting. In the latter times, I just amp up my self-care when I get home. When I can’t be home, I focus on my breathing in the moment, remembering that I don’t own what I’m feeling; that I do own how I deal with it. Big, belly breaths are so helpful.

The irony of this full moon energy is that although I feel in my heart and soul, and physically better than ever, I’ve cried the last two evenings. A clearing is going on, as my heart feels heavy. Releasing old energies – full moons are good for that. I’ve wanted nothing more than to be home after work. Curled up with a blanket. Napping. Having hot baths, and hot cups of cocao. So I have done just. Back to yoga tomorrow to get this new energy flowing.


2017 has been an intense year for almost every person I have spoke with. Listen to your intuition that is guiding you what is best for you. It’s okay to say, “No” or “Yes” without needing to justify it to yourself or anyone else. Be easy. As we are coming to almost the last 2 months of the year – am I the only person who wants to know where da fuck 2017 went?! I feel like so much has happened, in my inner and outer world, it’s like I’ve gone through a time warp and a year of my life has flown by. Unbelievable! Time is indeed precious. Our time has value, so I’m extra mindful on where and whom I’m spending it with. I’d encourage you to do the same.

I’ve been listening to this song. The lyrics in this song, although talking about someone who is struggling with drugs, has reminded me of how 2017 has been for the majority of people this year – tough, heartbreaking, soul searching, full of deaths (literal and spiritual) and rebirths etc.

“If you look into the distance, there’s a house upon the hill
Guiding like a lighthouse, it’s a place where you’ll be
Safe to feel at grace and if you’ve lost your way
If you’ve lost your way (I will leave the light on)
And I know you don’t know oh, but I need you to be brave
Hiding from the truth ain’t gonna make this all okay
I’ll see your pain if you don’t feel our grace
And you’ve lost your way
I will leave the light on
I will leave the light on
‘Cause I will leave the light on”

As you listen to this song, think of me. I will leave the light on for you. For those of you reading this now, if you need someone to hold space for you, to talk to, to ask their perspective, to just listen – I will do my best to be that person for you. Come exactly as you are. This year has reminded me of the importance of connection. The real – beyond ‘how’s the weather?’ – connection. The understanding that we never have to do this alone, as we are an INTERdependant species. I am NOT an expert, and will never proclaim to know all the answers, or even give you “advice” unless you ask. I just want to serve as a reminder of that innate connection we all have, but have been conditioned to believe otherwise.

Together we are so much more; together life IS easier. For some of you, I’m a stranger on the Internet. For others, perhaps I’m one of your soul sisters. For everyone else, maybe I’m somewhere in between. That need not matter. I have had so much support over this year during my difficult times, now that I’m riding the ride, instead of barely keeping my head above the water, I want to give back – pay it forward – more than before with this open call from my heart to yours. My heart is more open now than ever. If you feel led to, connect with me in the comment section below, or on my Facebook Page.

If you don’t feel led to reach out to me, let this be a reminder that wherever you are, however you feel, there is someone who cares about you that would be happy to support you – just as you are. That whatever struggles you going through right now, you don’t need to do it alone. You can if you want to take the more difficult road. The road that I believe often times leads to suffering. You will be amazed at what vulnerability will do to your relationships – platonic and romantic. I’m speaking from this year’s experiences I’ve had with my tribe and my relationships have never been better – more authentic, more raw, more fulfilling with an ease and love has filled our connections, and interactions. I can tell you it feels so damn good! This is what I call Soul Food.

I promise you’ll be ok. I See You.

With big, big love,
S.

Side note: Blog has hit 10,000 hits! Thank you so much for all of your support! ❤

For The Soul · Music

The Cure – Lady Gaga Soul Food

I cannot get enough of this song. I don’t believe we can “fix” anyone, so I dedicated this song to myself from me. I put on my headphones on max volume, headed to the bathroom (big mirror and good acoustics) ;), danced and sang my heart out – on repeat. It’s another song that brought happy tears to my eyes.

“So baby tell me yes
And I will give you everything
So baby tell me yes
And I will be all yours tonight
So baby tell me yes
And I will give you everything
I will be right by your side

If I can’t find the cure, I’ll
I’ll fix you with my love
No matter what you know, I’ll
I’ll fix you with my love
And if you say you’re okay
I’m gonna heal you anyway
Promise I’ll always be there
Promise I’ll be the cure (be the cure)”

Mmm hmm. ❤

Soul soothing. Vibe raising. Dance partying goodness.

Big love,
S. xo

For The Soul

A Different Kind of Shower Dance Party: Weekend Challenge Update

It’s only Sunday and the weekend is not over yet, but I wanted to share my thoughts with you. This weekend I challenged you – and me – to seek out the things that make you feel, and to channel that inner negative ego mind energy into positive intention and energy.

It’s been a wonderful weekend. I got off from work early on Friday. I treated myself to a manicure, a nutrient packed smoothie, some delicious bath bombs, and face mask. I had a spa night when I got home – hot bath, relaxing music and face mask. I was in bed by 9:30 p.m. I don’t remember the last time I was in bed that early. I was SO tired! Our bodies know what we need and it was apparently 12 hours of sleep.

I will list some of the other things that made me feel good this weekend and I hope to hear from you in the comments below. I made eye contact with a stranger and we exchanged smiles. I went to a baby shower and celebrated the coming birth of a new life – with delicious food, lots of hugs, sunshine, country atmosphere, and good people. I met with one of my souls sisters afterwards for a bite to eat on a patio by the water, drank an apple martini, got an ice cream cone at 9:30 p.m. and walked along the water. It’s Blues Fest here in town this weekend and the downtown area was buzzing with lots of people, good music and vibes. We had a sleepover – because you’re never too old for sleepovers!

Today, I am still chilling in my pjs and it’s after noon hour. I plan to relax for the rest of the day and really indulge in this lazy Sunday.

Yesterday morning, while showering, I had a moment that doesn’t come around all that often. But it’s made me hungry for more. I put on a Kesha playlist on my phone, and hopped into the shower. This song came on…

I had a dance party in the shower. Arms up in the air, singing, HUGE smile on my face, and felt a deep inner peace wash over me. In this moment, I was reminded of what bliss truly is. We’ve all had dance parties in the shower, but this was on a whole other level. I definitely learned to let go. I’m not sure of what exactly, but that doesn’t matter. I felt a weight lift off my whole being. It literally brought me to tears – authentically happy, peaceful in my soul tears.

I want more of that and that I will have more of. My intention is to seek out more of this feeling. More of the moments that trigger that feeling. Of all the things that happened this weekend, this one was by far the most important moment. I had a knowing that everything is ok, that it always has been even when it felt like it wasn’t. Powerful. Hard to put into words. Grateful none the less. So incredibly grateful for this life.

With all of this, I am sending you so much love. Yes, you. May you find a peace in your heart that is hard to put into words. This is my wish for you. Today. Tomorrow. Always.

❤ S.

Health/Well Being · Thoughts

Weekend Challenge

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This is my weekend challenge to us.

There’s a great deal of chaos and stress going on in the world, and in many people’s inner world. I say this time and time again, but the energies seem to be relentless as far as giving us opportunities to rise above, to learn lessons, to become refined versions of ourselves. I trust the process; however, it’s challenging. It sucks. I feel you. You are not alone. I promise you this. Being an empath, I can feel it too, even though I personally haven’t got caught in this round of crazy energy, as much as those around me.

I also know it’s easy to get caught in a negative spiral. So I challenge you this. Pick one day this weekend – or all weekend if you’re up for it – to be extra aware of that inner voice. You know the voice I’m talking about – the one that analyses, judges and critiques the behaviours etc. of ourselves and others. The one that doesn’t have anything good to say. Yes, that one. When that inner critic comes creeping in – shift your focus…

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If Steve Urkel was stress…Not this weekend, you’re not. Not this weekend. Challenge has been accepted!

I challenge you to make a list – mental or on paper – of the things that make you feel good this weekend. I’m talking anything – smells, tastes, activities, peoples, experiences, thoughts etc. I’d like to take it a step further and challenge you to go out of your way to find and plan for these feel good things!

I want to hear all about it in the comments below!

It’s easy to get caught in our day to day routines, and schedules that we often forget to do or notice those feel good things. The purpose of this challenge isn’t to encourage you to “hide” from your troubles and stresses, the “reality” of the world affairs, etc. and bury your head in the sand. Not forever. Just For Today. Just for this moment in time – consciously change your perspective, give yourself a break from the negativity and all the shit that is dragging you down. You deserve it. And maybe today will turn into tomorrow, and those hard times you find yourself in may become a little less heavy on your heart and a little easier to get through. That is my wish for you. (Aside from having the best of everything!) 🙂

For today, and always – big love,
S.

For The Soul · Thoughts

East Coast Road Trip: Just What I Needed

As some of you know, I headed out to Eastern Canada for a road trip this week with one of my best friends. If you have never done this, I highly recommend doing it! We just got home last night to Ontario, after a long 16 hour car ride. We made stops in New Brunswick, PEI, and Nova Scotia. Canada is absolutely beautiful. I saw some of the most beautiful places: Singing Sands, Hopewell Rocks, Dickson Falls, Halifax Harbour, the open ocean, Peggy’s Cove, and so many other places along the way.

 

I met some really nice, welcoming people. The vibe I get from the East Coast, PEI in particular, is ease. Everyone I met was laid back, welcoming, helpful and friendly. I see why people love it out there because I fell in love with the East Coast.

I have come back with a heart and soul so full, it brings me to happy tears as I write this. This trip is exactly what I needed – to be free, to go with where I felt led to go, to not have an agenda and let go of my ego’s desire to always plans things, and to get out of my comfort zone. To laugh and laugh and laugh until I couldn’t breathe, every day.

There was one day where it was rainy and cold, and my vibe was low and really not feeling like myself for no particular reason at all. My mood tends to match the weather, and being curled up in bed is where I wanted to be. But I made the best of it – this day we grabbed $1 ponchos, went to Hopewell Rock and Dickson falls, and had so much fun. Isn’t that what it’s all about? Making the best of it, and not missing out on an opportunity when it presents itself. Mother Earth is truly an incredible place.

Another day, with trembling legs and my heart beating out of my chest, I jumped off a high wall – maybe 20 ft. high – into the ocean current below. I was terrified. I’m not a good swimmer. I don’t like heights. But I watched as all these children were so care free jumping over and over without hesitation, laughing and having so much fun. I felt I had to. “That’s living!” I remember saying to myself. We can learn so much from kids. I don’t want my fear of the unknown to get in the way of truly living. I wanted to use this as an opportunity to get out of my own way, and to prove to myself that I could do it. I scrapped my knees, and almost lost my bathing suit bottoms into the open ocean, haha, but woo! It felt damn good!

I could go on and on about what this trip has reminded me of or the adventures we went on, but I will leave you with this. As often as possible, forget your To-Do list. It will be there tomorrow. Go on adventures as often as you can. Go to places never seen before – in the outer world and in your inner world. Spread love wherever you go – I promise it will be reflected back to you. Do the things that scare you – that’s where life gets really interesting. Above all else, be easy and listen to what your soul tells you – the universe really does have your back.

With so much love,
S.

For The Soul · Thoughts

A Test I Didn’t Study For

Hi lovelies. Let’s talk.

I was speaking with a close friend of mine today and she made a remark that this month has been like a test she didn’t study for (thank you for the inspiration, G.). Several of my closest loved ones are going through some significant life changes. A common theme is the ending of their long-term relationships, and all the things that come along with that. Myself included. At the beginning of the year, I made the choice to leave my long-time boyfriend of 8 years.

This was one of my most challenging, heart wrenching, soul expanding decisions and transitions I have made in my almost 31 years around the sun. One to which I am still adjusting to. However, when we choose happiness over comfort/insert why reason why we stay, it is short-term pain, for a long-term gain(s) as cliche as it sounds.

Ending of relationships are incredibly difficult, especially when it’s just a matter of growing apart and no longer vibing on the same wave length. Deal breakers make it much easier to decide to move on. Yes, saying good-bye can feel tragic, but what is really tragic is when people settle. And I’m not just talking about in relationships. I’m talking about with any area of our lives. That isn’t a judgement, because I have done it. I empathize and it makes my heart sad for those that feel stuck. It’s a terrible feeling. But we have a choice. We always will. Our freewill can never be taken from us. We deserve more. We deserve to break free from the chains we lock ourselves into. We deserve the best of our hearts desires.

I’m also noticing another general theme of this year, which seems to have carried over from last year, is letting go of what no longer serves our highest good (this ties into the ending of significant relationships). I realize that this is probably an underlying, life-long theme for anyone on a spiritual/self-betterment journey because the nature of being self-aware. But. It’s definitely amped up! *wipes sweat from brow* I have been thrown what feels like a steady flow of opportunities to practice what I know, and to let go of all the shit that isn’t doing me any good any more. Many of those that I have talked to recently have said the same. Maybe you are as well?

I am thankful for these opportunities, because on the other side of the spectrum of emotions and clearing I have been doing, I know I am and have been making room for the really sweet, juicy, awesome stuff. I’ve had some really great things happen this year so far. But I’m also tired and it hasn’t been easy. I’m over trying to let on that everything is okay all of the time. I was guilty of this in my earlier days in my spiritual journey, in part because I was in a funk and wanted to feel good, so I made my initial commitment pure positive focus. I felt I needed that to get out of the darker place I was in and it helped. We can only do that for so long, until it becomes emotional bypassing a.k.a. not dealing with our stuff, which is not in our best interest. I also thought that if I admitted to my struggles (to either myself or others) that it made me a hyprocrite and that I wasn’t walking the talk of the (stereotypical) spiritual person we’re conditioned to believe that walks around farting rainbows, frolicking about, oozing nothing but positive vibes. Amen to letting that shit go! 🙂 I resisted the human part of me, the one that feels everything so deeply – positive and negative emotions – which ironically is one of the same as the spiritual part of me. There is no separation. What’s most important is what we do in the times that we’re not okay.

So lots and lots of self-care these days/months. I encourage you to keep yourself on the top of your priority list, and ask yourself often, ‘What would someone who loves themselves do?’ That may mean letting yourself have a good cry – you know the kind I’m talking about – the bring you to your knees kind of cry. Maybe a spa day, or sleeping in is exactly what you need. It could mean going to the gym or saying no to plans with friends and staying home for the night. It could mean having that conversation with a loved that’s been weighing heavy on your heart. It could also mean having one too many glasses of wine, and letting loose on the dance floor until 3 a.m. You know what is best for you (despite what we are conditioned to believe). Having clear boundaries, and not over-committing has really helped me keep my head above the water, and not just a bit but enough where I can see the horizon.

I’m more than ready for the global shift into this new wave of consciousness to sweep the planet! But in the mean time, while the 3D stuff continues to make it’s way out kicking and screaming, I need to remind myself often to be easy on myself, and on others too. To remember that everyone, myself included, is going through something. To know that when all the layers are pulled back, each of us comes from the same beautiful Energy Source – call it what you want – God, Universe, Source – it matters not.

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p.s. they are only mistakes if we refuse to find the lesson in the pain. 😉 It’s there. Some times we have to dig deep.

I dedicate tonight’s post to all of you going through a hard time right now. I want you to know that you are loved and that it’s okay if you don’t feel okay. Better days are ahead. I know this because you’ve survived the worst of the ones you didn’t think you would. You are not alone. Keep being your bad ass self, even if you don’t feel like your truest self. Find your tribe, love them hard, but love yourself even more (yes, this is possible and I recommend this book, Shadows Before Dawn by Teal Swan, for practical tools to help get you there). I recommend it as it is the only book I have come across and read so far that actually gives practical tools on how to get there. We know we need to love ourselves, but we need to know the HOW.

Deep bow in appreciation for your humanity. It’s not easy coming here doing this human thing; it takes courage. So keep that chin up, Souldier, I See You and you got this!

Big love to you.
S.

 

Uncategorized

I’m Back!

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Now that I have your attention and hopefully made you laugh, I have good news to share. If you’ve been following my Facebook page, you may have read that I have been without a laptop since the beginning of the year, which made blogging anything of length difficult and far too time consuming. Good news is I now have a laptop with the fastest internet I’ve ever had and I will be posting on here again more often!! *happy dance*

I feel like there’s so much I want to share with all of you and I’m not sure on where I’m going to start. I’ll do what I always do and allow divine inspiration to guide me.

If there’s anything you want to me to discuss, please let me know in the comments below.

It’s way past my bedtime, but I had to share my excitement, so until next time, be easy.

Big love,
S.

For The Soul · Health/Well Being

A Reminder In Times Like This

Today, this beautiful instrumental song has been on repeat. It feels emotional; a letting go of sorts of what no longer serves. It touches my soul so I wanted to share with you. Listen with me…

It doesn’t take much digging around to see that times are intense. There’s so much going on globally, it can be overwhelming. An uncertainty of where to look and what to focus on. I believe we are on the cusp of great change. I belief that this isn’t going to be an easy shift, but it is a necessary shift.

This song and current times have reminded me of the importance of self-care, more now than ever. We need to make sure that we are taking care of ourselves, emotionally, physically, and mentally, so that we not only can live the best life, but so that we can be ready for what is to come. We’re ready. We’re capable. We’re worthy. Worthy of so much more than what our current systems have to offer us. For this reason, I am so excited for what is on the other side of this, what often appears as, madness.

Letting go has been an on going theme in my life for some time now. I think this is something that we never really stop doing once we get a taste of what it’s like to let go of what no longer serves us. There’s a lightness that comes, a breathe of fresh air, and a freedom that can only be felt. It can be scary to let go of the known; there’s no doubt about that. Some times, it is painful. But on the other side of that, in my experience, it’s been more painful to hang onto the things that aren’t serving me than it has been to let them go.

Letting go is only one part of my self-care routine. Letting go creates a space for more things to come in. So that is where the fun begins, adding in those goodies. My self-care varies from day to day, but there are some things that are NEEDS on my list. These are things I know I need to have in my routine in order to stay centered and feeling good. My main priority above all else is yoga. I plan my evenings after work around my yoga schedule. So yes, that means dinner plans with friends, grocery shopping etc. come after. It can wait.

The better I feel, the better I have to give to those I love. I deserve the best version of me, as does those that have relationships with me. I have felt what it’s like to not have myself very high on my priority list; that didn’t feel good. And once I was reminded of how good it felt when I was taking care of me, I promised myself I’d make it my job to make sure that nothing stood in my way of my self-care.

A little something, just for you, every day will go a long way. That rhymed! 🙂 It’s time we, as a society, stop the glorification of busy. Slow down. Breathe. Prioritize. And remember that we are in control of our schedules. You are worthy of time just for you. Every.Single.Day. No excuses; just do it and you will be grateful you did.

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With Love,
S.

Health/Well Being · Thoughts

An Abrupt Reminder From The Universe

Here’s a little observation I’ve made, or should I say have been reminded of this week – if you ignore the taps on the shoulder by the Universe when it is trying to tell you something, those reminders will eventually become a ton of bricks falling onto you and we’ll be forced to pay attention to the message.

3 days ago, I was enjoying a beautiful, gentle yoga session under the pear tree at my dad’s in the country. It really doesn’t get much better than an outdoor yoga session – Am I right? We went about our day and played around on the inner tubes in the river, after having a photo shoot on the hay bails. It was so much fun. But here comes the ton of bricks. I’m not sure exactly what has triggered this, but I have been in an immense amount of low back pain since. I spent the rest of that day having a hard time walking and doing every day tasks, hunched over like I have some pregnancy swag going on.

I thought I was on the mend when I went to bed last night; I was feeling much better than when this first started. But I woke this morning at 4 a.m. because I tried to roll over and my back was in so much pain. I have never experience pain like this. It took every ounce of my energy to get out of bed to get some pain relieving cream. I broke down in tears and felt like I was partially paralysed. I sat for 5 1/2 hours to get a tattoo done and that was less painful than this. Back pain is no joke.

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Happened and it’s a lie. FML. Haha!

This has been a mentally tough for me as well and I am active 4 days out of the week and I really miss working out. But I understand that my body is asking for a rest. I understand that I have missed the signs somehow that the universe was trying to tell me to rest. So I am focusing on this – that it is time to rest. There’s still the old part of me that I am working on clearing, that thinks that my efforts of getting in shape will be reversed now that I am essentially tied to a chair or laying on my back until I heal. But the bigger part of me know that I will be in worse shape, if I do not listen to my body.

I am also in deep appreciation for that my body can do and does do on a daily basis.I feel so fortunate to have great health. Having an injured back affects so many things since our core line and spine is at the centre of our being where all of our motions stem from. For example, try wiping your butt without twisting your back and only moving your arm. Yep, I went there. We get creative when we have to. 🙂 I’m doing my best to find some humour in this so it does not dampen my spirits too much, as I would like to enjoy the last few days of vacation before going back to work in a few days.

Moral of my story (rant) and why I wanted to share this experience with all of you, as this has been a very obvious reminder about the importance of listening to the signs and symptoms our life presents to us, so we can avoid as much pain and suffering as possible. We’re never going to get rid of the adversities in our lives. This is where we grow and evolve into better versions of ourselves. But we can certainly make it a lot easier on ourselves along our journeys. When we ignore the subtleties, we will be presented with more and more obvious (and often more painful) experiences until we pay attention. This isn’t some form of punishment. This is the Law of Attraction at work and the universe is just responding to your vibration. I still have no idea what signs I missed, and that’s okay too. Going forward, I will be more diligent to hone my acute awareness skills so I don’t find myself here again.

I am going to amp up my self-care routine and get myself back in action, mentally and physically, when my body tells me it’s okay to.

Be easy,
S.

Health/Well Being · Thoughts

What Do I Do? More In-Depth Look At My Health and Wellness Journey

Last night, I posted on my personal Facebook page my excitement and proud moment of how I’ve lost a total of 11 pounds and a handful of inches in the last 2 months. A dear friend asked me for some motivation and healthy eating tips, and what I do for physical exercise. I started to write a novel in the comments, but I’ve decided to write about it on here instead in case I can help any other folks as well. Thank you for the inspiration, Jenna!

I will caution though that this isn’t a one-size-fits-all journey and that I am by no means an expert. I’m simply a woman who got tired of my outside self not matching my inside self. I am a woman who got tired of living most of my life never fully loving my body. I am a woman who was tired of feeling uncomfortable in my own skin and often feeling the need to hide behind my clothes. I got tired, had a pity party for myself, and then got angry and said “enough is enough!” after this experience. As painful as that experience was, I am so thankful for it. It’s given me motivation that I hadn’t felt for years.

Everyone of us is so uniquely different and what works for me isn’t necessarily going to work for anyone else. It’s about trial and error and discovering what works and the willingness to change things as needed. Our bodies will adapt and will require more or less of certain things and we need to be flexible.

My focus has been on creating a healthy lifestyle that consists of maintainable habits that I can carry with me the rest of my life. All other times, I focused on “needing to lose weight,” which stemmed from a “I’m not good enough” vibe. I was often left feeling deprived and that I was punishing myself for carrying extra weight. In my experience, the body doesn’t respond optimally if we we’re coming from that place. I’ve focused a lot on loving myself, and not just my external self, and I’ve noticed that I crave exercise and movement, and healthy foods. Our bodies know what it needs in terms of movement and food and I’ve learned to trust it. I learned that I deserve to feel and look my very best.

More specifically, I do 90 minute yoga classes 2 times a week, and lift weights another 2 times a week. Sometimes this works out to being 4 workouts in a row, other weeks, I have a rest day after 2 days of exercise. The latter usually makes me feel better. Prior to the last 2 months, I was doing strictly yoga 3 – 5 times a week for over a year and not getting the physical results I wanted so I added weight training (Body Pump Classes at Goodlife Fitness). Yoga will always be part of my life – because it’s so much more than exercise – it connects the mind, body and spirit. It’s literally part of who I am.

Most important part in terms of exercise is that I LOVE it! I already said how much I love yoga but I love lifting weights. I feel badass, powerful, strong, and I love seeing how each week I can lift more and more. I love seeing the definition it’s starting to give certain areas of my body. Hear me roar!! 🙂

Yes, I’m talking to you!!
In terms of healthy eating, I’m a strict vegetarian and I follow an intermittent fasting cycle every day. My eating window is 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. The research I’ve done says that is really effective for weight loss and I believe that we really don’t need to be eating all day long. Digestion requires a serious amount of energy and I like the idea of giving my body a break, so I thought I’d give it a try and it’s been successful. I’m quite strict on this time frame. If I’m hungry before noon, I’ll eat and just keep my window to the 8 hours. A few times where I have eaten past my window and I didn’t get ample amount of time to digest before hitting the sack, I slept awful and woke up feeling like I had a hangover.
intermittent-fastingI use the Fitnesspal app on my phone to log my food, exercise, and progress, which has been very helpful! I’ve heard good things about other apps, so I’m not promoting this specific one, it’s just the only one I’ve used. It’s really helpful to keep me accountable. I’m not on any kind of diet – I just eat healthy foods, while having a treat periodically and not feeling guilty about it. Let’s be honest, some stuff that isn’t so good for us tastes really good and I’m not going to deprive myself of that experience. I do notice though that I crave those foods less and less, and food with a lot of salt and sugar have become really noticeable to me and I don’t enjoy them like I used to. I’ve read our taste buds become rewired when we change our eating habits and I’ve noticed that in myself as well.

I don’t have a specific meal plan – I eat what I like and when I’m hungry (within my window) and stick to my caloric intake according to my Fitnesspal app. I stick to water, and every now and again I’ll have fruit juice – which is only maybe a few times a year.

I don’t strive for perfection in any of this and neither should you. I’m repeating myself when I say this, but the most important piece of “advice” I can give to someone who doesn’t know where to start is find an activity you love and do it often, eat foods that you like and know are healthy, and be good to yourself. This shouldn’t be complicated. Don’t hold yourself to expectations that you know are unrealistic in the long-run. ENJOY the process and your body will respond accordingly. There’s a huge energetic/mental aspect to all of this. If you hate what you’re doing and eating, stop it right now. Your body will respond much more positively and quickly if you enjoy the process. I speak from personal experience and from my understanding of how energy and thoughts works.

As cliche as this sounds, life is about enjoying the journey so what is the point if you’re hating every minute of it? Yes, it’s a challenge to get started, but it feels so good once you do. I still get my ass kicked in the gym and at the yoga studio [and if I eat cheesecake like I did yesterday for my birthday (I felt sick afterwards)], but I still do it because I know I’m worth every bit of time I spend taking care of me. I also have much more to give my loved ones when I take care of me. Life happens outside of our comfort zones. After all, you’re only given one permanent home to live in so why not make it as strong, vibrant, healthy, beautiful and glowing as possible?  You deserve nothing less than the best. I know this because you’re alive. It is your divinely given right.

With love,
S.

I’d love to hear from you; please feel free to post in the comments below. xo