Protecting yourselves from other people’s energy: How I cope as an empath.

As an empath, I tend to take on other people’s energies as if it was my own. I can feel drained and exhausted after being around so many other people at once. For a stay at home mother of three children I can attest to how overwhelming even a simple playdate at a children’s play centre can be. Children screaming and crying, parents yelling,  loud noises of toys hitting the floor, the smell of dirty diapers can be all to much to handle some days. It is important to me to protect myself from taking on other people’s energies for my own holistic wellbeing. It has taken me years to learn what works best for me. There are things I do to prepare before going out to big events where I know it will be loud and chaotic. There are also things I have learned to do when coming home from these group gatherings to help guide me back into balance.

How to prepare yourself before going out:

There are a few things I will do to help myself prepare for dealing with high amounts of incoming energies, and possible even negative ones.

  • When I am going to an event I know may triggers stress for me I like to do a quick meditation, and some deep breathing exercises to help calm and centre my mind. I like to do this to ground myself before I enter into a more high energy situation.
  • After I feel centred I like to have a plan and be prepared. I plan the least stressful route to the event and back. As an empath I find freeways can be overwhelming with all the lights, traffic and movement so I have found if I make a plan ahead of time I am more likely to enter into an event more calm.
  • I sometimes find it helpful to imagine myself at the event.When focusing your energy into visualizing a positive experience you place that energy into a pure intention. This will create a state being within yourself that is calm, content and focused. This will help set the stage for a more enjoyable experience at said event or situation. If you are attuned to reiki you can send yourself healing energy as well.
  • Lastly I love to wear or carry crystals on me. Crystals can offer uplighting energy and can aid in helping to repel any negative energies from others around you.IMG_2007

What to do when you can’t handle the energies but you can’t leave the event:

A couple of little things you can do when you are in a situation where you feel you are overwhelmed with negative energies or even just bombarded with too much energies is to remove yourself temporarily from the situation.

  • Doing a quick meditation in the bathroom can seem odd but taking a “time out” to do some deep breathing exercises (my favourite is nadi shodhana prayanama, or alternate nostral breathing technique) can calm the mind and focus your energy into bringing yourself back into balance.
  • Self talk can help in disconnecting yourself from the situation or person that is overwhelming. When I’m around an extremely high energetic person that talks really fast and uses loud gestures I tend to walk away feeling anxious. This is a perfect example of how you can carry other people’s energy without necessarily realizing it. Recognizing that it is not your energy and releasing it can lighten your energy field. Remember it is not your burden to carry.
  • Another great suggestion that was shared with me recently was to carry a bottle of  cleansing aromatherapy spray in your bag or purse. If you begin to feel  overwhelmed with energies, go to your car, or the bathroom to take a break and spray yourself with this cleansing spray. This is very similar idea to “saging” yourself. You can use essential oils such as sage, lavender, and/or any other essential oils you enjoy.IMG_2402

What to do when you have done everything you could think of and you still come home feeling drained:

Despite my best efforts of protecting myself from other’s energies I still tend to come home nine times out of ten feeling some what drained. I always need some down time to collect my thoughts and swift through any residual emotions that may be surrounding me.

  • One way you can cleanse yourself of any negativity is do an activity you love to do, like going for a walk, practicing yoga or going for a bike ride. Do anything that makes you feel great and brings up your personal vibration. This helps to set your mind in a positive space increasing your feel-good hormones which will help to shift your emotions.
  • Use the elements to ground and cleanse yourself. You can have bath or shower to wash away the energy. You can ground yourself in the earth by going into to nature, gardening or walking barefoot on the ground.
  • Saging yourself and/or burning aromatherapies or candles can cleanse the space and your aura.
  • Meditation or even just sitting in a silence can do miracles when trying to reset yourself.
  • Journaling can also be helpful when learning what works best for you or how you can handling certain situations more effectively. By writing these things down you can better understand how you cope best in certain situations and maybe what events are ok to opt out of. Sometimes we think we will offend others if we don’t do what they may expect us to do but honouring ourselves and what we are comfortable doing is essential for maintaining good holistic wellbeing.

For some of us with this “gift” it can feel like a curse at times, but the more we understand our unique challenges the easier it becomes to find joy in the chaos we sometimes feel. I feel it’s important to be open and honest and share these challenges you experience with your friends and loved ones. This can help them understand why you may need to do certain things like go for a “time-out” walk away from the crowds or have a quiet bath when you get home to reset. There are many ways to find holistic balance. Make sure to be patient and compassionate with yourself as you discover what works best for you.

 

 

 

Learning how to love our “sensitivities” as an empath

Some of us experience the world very differently. Sounds, smells, and noises can bring on feelings of anxiety. Crowds can be draining and overwhelming on the best of days. We tend to take in all the energies around us and experience them as if they were our own. At times it can feel like we are carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders. This is what it means to be an empath.

As a child I would often feel things I couldn’t explain. I grew up in a family of six people, three of which where loud, energetic brothers. Though I loved them all, I remember the noises of the household would leave this heavy energy behind that often left me feeling drained. As a child I naturally found places to go to that would help me to centre myself and cope with the overwhelming amounts of stimuli I was feeling. I would escape to my grandmother’s house or retreat into my bedroom to sit in silence as I grounded myself.  I always found it strange that no one else seemed to struggle with these issues the same way I did. Over time this state of being became normal to me and I learned to accept that I was a bit different.

It was later on in life that I really started to notice how much I struggled with this. Moving to the big city at the age of 19 was paralyzing for me. There was a huge part of me that wanted to experience the beautiful diversity and culture that a city has to offer and the other apart of me was drowning in anxiety. I spent years living in this high state of suffering. Everyday I experienced physical pain that came from the stress of overstimulation. My stomach was always in knots, constantly sick and experiencing muscle pains and physical fatigue.  More often then not I would come home feeling drained from my day as if I absorbed the energies from all the people around me. As many empaths do, I began to shut out the world as a means of coping. I slowly started to make sense of all these feelings and I learned that I am an extremely sensitive person, so much so that I could feel emotional and even physical pains from others.

After reading more about this I began to see that there was a way I could turn what I always perceived to be a negative trait into embracing it as an amazing gift. This was such a new concept for me. I always felt being an empath was a sign of weakness. In our culture we are always told to be tough and not let anything bother us. Being raised in a society that sees emotional release as a weakness, it can be a challenge to begin to see our “sensitivity” as a gift. I learned through self exploration and understanding of who I am that I began to feel empowered by this new sense of self awareness. That I can choose to see my challenges as a hinderance or I can choose to see it as way to connect to others. My ability to feel other people’s pain gives me an opportunity to help others.

IMG_4682

 

Do not let your struggles define you, whatever they may be. Use your new found understanding of these challenges to empower you to help aid others on their journey. I once heard someone say when trying to search for the meaning of your life, go back to the place of personal pain and struggle. It is through experiencing those struggles that we can learn to rise above them and can begin to help others through sharing the lessons we have learned. We become a living example of what human strength, commitment and persistent can bring. My struggles makes me human, raw and real. My strength and persistence to overcome them makes me a warrior. Become a warrior of your personal truth where your own unique challenges become your gifts to the world.

Learning to live a life of gratitude

It can be hard to find things to be grateful for when experiencing bouts of misfortune. It can sometimes feel like life is throwing you one challenge after another. How do you find the positive side of things in situations like job loss or death in the family when all you feel is sadness, grief or stress? It’s not an easy task to learn how to do this but it can be done. It can be challenging when learning how to live a life of gratitude and may feel even a little “fake” at first, but once you cultivate this daily practice into your life you will never go back. It changes your outlook on the yourself and the world around you. It’s amazing how easily it can spread into all aspects of your life. When I started practicing daily gratitude I couldn’t deny the huge positive impact it had. These are some of the ways I have brought mindfulness and daily gratitude into my life.

  1. Daily gratitude started for me by placing an intention before my daily yoga practice. After my yoga practice I would sit in meditation and take time to thank my body for the strength it had to carry me through my asanas. I would thank my mind and spirit for staying focused and bringing calm into my practice. This expression of gratitude can be done with any exercise you may enjoy. Take the time to be in the moment and enjoy the activity you are doing, then make sure to take the time to thank your body for all it does for you.
  2. I would always start my morning in the bathroom as do most people, brushing my teeth and getting myself ready for the day. I always have sticky notes on my mirror that have sayings or mantras written on them. Every morning as I get ready for my day I read them. When I feel that a mantra is no longer serving me I take it down and write a new one. This is a great way to start my day off with positive affirmations and cultivating daily gratitude.
  3. There are days that are just so perfect you want to hold on to the beauty that occurred in that moment. In these moments I have a special jar that we fill with little notes that we write what we are thankful for on. I encourage my children and husband to add to it anytime we’ve had a particularly amazing day. Its not a set thing I do everyday but I do it weekly or whenever I feel the need to record a special event. At the end of the year we plan to go through all the sticky note and reflect back on all that things we have to be grateful for.
  4. We as a family have integrated a weekly gratitude meeting, where we check in with everyone on what parts of their day or week they have really enjoyed. During “gratitude” we often practice yoga poses together, do a short mediation, work with calm breathing techniques and sometimes if I feel they may benefit from reiki, I will do energy work on them. This is a fun time where we allow ourselves time to connect with each as a family.
  5. Journaling is another way I practice gratitude. I obviously love to write, so much so it has become a wonderful creative outlet for me to express myself in an authentic and positive way. Art and music are other examples of how we can express ourselves through stunning paintings, beautiful poems, or powerful music.
  6. One of the things I do daily is work on bringing my awareness into the moment. Throughout each day I practice seeing the world with my eyes wide open. When I see a beautiful flower, or notice how much I’m enjoying the warmth of the sun I express it vocally. If I encounter a friendly stranger that offers kind words or a a caring gesture I acknowledge that moment and I express how thankful I am. By voicing my positive experiences it helps to bring it to light. Once you express an event in a positive way the vibrations leave your body and you can feel the positive energy flowing. When you share your experience with others people they in turn end up sharing their positive experiences with you. It becomes this beautiful transfer of positive energy.
  7. Daily mediation is so important to maintaining a level of gratitude. When we stop and connect back to ourselves, and sit in silence, we have a moment to appreciate the beauty that exists around and in us. When we allow ourselves the space to let go of all the pressures, we can create a space of authenticity and purity. We remember the simplicity of who we are and why we are here.
  8. Last but not least you must be wondering, what about the times when everything is crumbing and you can’t see the horizon? Yes I have been there, many, many times. In these moments its especially important to practice gratitude. This helps shift your awareness from all that is horrible to all that is going perfectly as it should, because really isn’t it all that way we choose to see it? When ever facing a challenge I always ask myself what is the lesson here? Am I needing to be more mindful, or compassionate to others or myself? Am I struggling because I need to learn to let go something? After self reflections I can begin to see that there are reasons for everything. And in this awareness I often come to a place within myself that expresses how fortunate I am in many other ways. Take a moment to ground yourself in your personal truth, remember all the beauty that exist within you and around you and realize that no matter what, everything is ok. Everything is going to be just fine.

IMG_1320

 

 

Moving past the sins of our fathers, to a place where love prevails.

While I was attending my mediation teacher training program, I was quite fascinated with how many overlaps there are in the core beliefs of various spiritual teaching as well as religious groups. The teacher we had was explaining how the differences in all of these teaching really came down to different terminology being used. At the end of the day we are all striving for that connection to the divine.

This viewpoint was refreshing and exactly what I have always believed. We ARE all one. We are all spiritual beings having a physical experience on this earth. When we strip away our outer skin we are all the same underneath. We tend to define ourselves by the jobs we have, the people we surround ourselves with, the houses or properties we own. We let the colour of our skin, what we eat, what belief system we follow define us to suffocating restrictions. The truth is when we strip away everything we THINK defines who we are we realize we are all beautiful souls on our unique journey. So if this is true why do we find time and time again our society focusing on putting up walls between us because of our perceived differences? One of the things I enjoyed most about my course was the diversity in that room. So many women from varying backgrounds coming together to find this peaceful common ground. All of us working towards helping others and UNITING through acts of unconditional love.

When I was at my course we got to practice walking meditation. This was a type of mediation that was new to me. It’s a meditation of mindfulness where you learned how to detach from the world around you, while still being mindful with every step you take. Not holding on to any emotions but watching the mind, and with no judgement observing the world around you. So there I was walking outside listening to the traffic that passed by but not clinging to the energy it left behind. Slowly pacing along the fresh green, spring grass, noticing how crunchy, yet soft it felt under the souls of my feet. I came to a place of stillness and I crouched down to sit on the side of a hill. I placed my hands in the grass, mindfully noticing the sensations without reaching for a explanation. I sat in the warmth of sun as my eye began to wander to an ant I noticed in the grass right in front of me. This ant was climbing up a blade of grass and down the other side he kept repeating this action with every blade of grass he came to. He was slowly moving closer to my feet and hands. In this moment of awareness I realized that the ant doesn’t know the difference between me and the blades of grass. He doesn’t know where the grass ended and I began. I was the blade of grass and the grass was me. In that moment I knew that I belonged. I knew that we ALL belong. We are ALL these blades of grass woven together. Each of us a beautiful mass of energy and spirit. WE are all divine creations of infinite love.

IMG_0831

Every day we have these amazing opportunities to spread love and strip away these belief systems that no longer serve the higher good. We have a chance to create a world that is better than the one we inherited. We have a chance to bring up this next generation with higher levels of awareness where they know that acts of hate only bring more hate and that the way to true liberation is through love.  Isn’t it time we move past the sins of our fathers? This world doesn’t need more prejudice, discrimination, sexism, or racism. We ARE better than that. We can DO better. We can BE better. Equality comes with mutual respect for one and all.

Namaste~ I honour the place in you that is the same in me. I honour in you where the whole universe resides. I honour the place in you that is the same in me. WE are but ONE.

What makes your soul sing?

What makes your soul sing? What fills you with so much joy that you can’t imagine being anywhere else but right in that moment? When you are so engulfed with inner peace, everything feels just as it should, perfect. This isn’t the high you feel when you buy a new shirt or a new vehicle. Or the excitement of going on a trip somewhere remote and tropical. This is a joy that is unexplainable. Being completely immersed in an activity that puts you into a place of active meditation. Finding what makes you feel so alive that you dance in delight is key to discovering a place of balance between the pressures of our everyday life and the peace that lives within us.

IMG_1717 (1)

 

There are many activities I couldn’t imagine living without. Gardening, meditation, biking, and connecting with nature to name a few. But the most impactful daily practice that has changed my life has been yoga. I was introduced to yoga as a teenager and practiced on and off for those earlier years. Yoga became more consistent during the later years of my 20s and continuing on to my early 30s. Yoga has grounded and supported me through the most difficult times in my life. It also provided me with a beautiful blank canvas to write my own story and express myself freely. Yoga is an expression of my soul. As a painter speaking through their paintings, postures are an expression of where I am in that moment. Moving from one asana to the next, just as a painter moves their brush across the canvas, I follow the lines within myself, mixing in the vibrancy of creativity, love, peace, and spirituality. This daily practice brings me back to my truth. The moment I roll out my mat, all judgements leave me. My ego is silenced, and I go to a place inside myself of comfort, and familiarity. I know every movement as if it was as natural as my breath. Following alongside, the energy guides me and softens away any stress. I enter a place of active mediation. I am safe and secure. I am at home. A place where I can rejuvenate and energize or reflect and contemplate life’s challenges. It’s where I can laugh and at the same time feel safe to cry and release. This is the only place in this world I can naturally and authentically be myself.

IMG_1791

 

 

What is your place of release? Is it expressing yourself through music as you let go of life’s stresses while you sing from your heart? Do you find comfort in connecting with nature by growing your own garden and watching with delight as your seedlings emerge into beautiful fruit bearing plants? Whatever it may be for you there is so much value in finding an activity that brings you true happiness and so much joy that all concepts of time are lost and a sense of tranquility takes over. We need to have those places of healthy escape. Somewhere that is for us alone. This is where we can allow ourselves to release all judgements, and accept ourselves for who we really are in that moment. Allow yourself time to discover what makes your soul sing. When you find it be sure to embrace the beauty that grows inside from enjoying something uniquely yours. That is the only place where freedom truly exists.

Weight loss: The bigger picture

I started to struggle with my weight while experiencing huge fluctuations during my child-bearing years. Dealing with pregnancy weight, hormone imbalances, and postpartum depression, I couldn’t seem to find an internal balance. It was just over a year ago that I vowed to change the negative outlook I had on my body and my life. After going through a very difficult time, my life felt out of control. I had an unhealthy relationship with food which lead to an eating disorder. I was drinking alcohol to numb the grief I was experiencing and I felt lost under a blanket of depression. I knew this wasn’t the person I was deep down inside, nor was it the person I wanted to be. I made a promise to myself that I was going clean up the mess in my life. There were many valuable lessons I learned as I started to peel back the layers of pain I buried myself under. I learned that lasting change happens when we change our perception and live from a place of authenticity and personal truth. The more I pulled back these layers of personal heartache the more I could see a balanced and holistic way of living. I started to see that I had to change my lifestyle and it was going to take time and patience. These are the ways I found healing which lead to not only weight loss but to me finding my truth and releasing myself from old wounds that kept me trapped.

IMG_3816   IMG_1386

 

1)STRESS- No one seems to talk about how much stress can prevent weight loss and actually cause weight gain. Stress hormones that are out of balance can throw any hopes of weight loss right out the window. Not only do we experience stress in our everyday lives, we then add unnecessary pressure to ourselves while we try so desperately to lose weight. We worry about counting calories, and calculating macros while struggling to figure out whether we should be high-carb, low-fat, or low-fat and high-carb. Well I’m here to say all that stressing only make things worse. I eventually threw out all the diet books, guidelines, scales and stopped worrying about whether I was doing this “weight loss thing” right. Finding ways to help me keep me stress levels low was so important while I was losing weight. I found stress relief in practing daily meditation and yoga. I know its hard but find healthy ways to relieve your stress and help you relax. Be patient and trust yourself in the journey you are on. Rememeber to take it one day at a time.

2)ALCOHOL- I loved my glass of wine at night so much so that I felt I needed it to wind down after a crazy day. I thought I could lose weight by eating healthy and exercising while still have my wine in the evenings. It didn’t take long to learn that it wasn’t possible to have both. Not only is there tons of sugar in alcohol, but it causes water weight retention, mood swings and imbalances in your hormones. I lost weight when I quit drinking. My mind became clearer, my moods and hormones balanced out and I became healthier.

3)HORMONES- Stress hormones, female hormones, hormones while breastfeeding or after having a baby. There are many ways of balancing hormones, but most important thing to remember is to be patient. It take time after having a baby or stopping breast feeding for things to settle. It took me two and half years after having each of my children to start to see my body balance out.

4)CLEANSING- Cleansing the mind of the garbage we tell ourselves about ourselves. Cleansing our bodies by exploring anything from a juicing cleanse, to raw food cleanse, to vegan cleanse, to just cutting out sugar and processed foods cleanse, whatever floats your boat. Cleansing is SO important. We live in a world where we are always absorbing toxins from the air we breathe to the junk food we eat. We have to take breaks and allow our bodies a chance to heal and rejuvenate.

5)CLEAN EATING- Enjoy your food and the process of creating new types of meals. Sometimes it can be hard to retrain your taste buds to crave vegetables and whole foods, especially when you may not be accustomed to them. But the more you eat this way the more you miss it when you have junk food. I still allow myself to eat foods that I wouldn’t consider “clean” from time to time but my body ALWAYS lets me know. For me, this is no longer worth it, especially when I have access to so many amazing whole foods recipes that taste just as yummy. I find the cleaner I eat the more my body craves and thrives on the high nutrition. There is no special diet to follow just eat what has been provided by mother earth for centuries. Make fruits, vegetables, nuts and seed your main focus.

6)FOOD SENSITIVITIES- Mine are, eggs, gluten, and dairy. When I eat them I retain water weight and my digestion is sluggish. I feel like poop quite literally. I’m not energized to exercise or doing anything. My mind just isn’t in it. If this is you, I would start with a food elimination diet to see if you are sensitive to certain food. When I stopped eating the foods that bothered me the weight fell off pretty effortlessly.

7)DIGESTION- If your digestion is not working like mine wasn’t your body can’t function at its best. Your immune system starts in your stomach so taking care of that is SO important for weight loss and overall health. Take probiotics, fermented foods, and lots of raw “living” fresh fruits and veggies. All of these things have natural enzymes, and fibre in them that can help regulate your digestion.

8)MINDSET-You have to heal the mind. You can’t succeed if your are constantly telling yourself that you are fat, you are lazy, you are ugly. ALL that negative self talk has got to go! Know and believe you are going to succeed and achieve your goals. Know that you are beautiful in the process. Don’t just focus on weight loss but focus on becoming healthier and changing the way you see and feel about yourself. Learn how to love yourself and enjoy the process of creating the person you want to be. Journaling, mediation, and daily affirmations are a few ways to help you work through your challenges and increase the amount positive energy into your daily life.

9)HEALING YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH FOOD- This was a BIG one for me. As I healed my relationship with food, the less I felt a need to binge and purge. It has been a healing journey that has taken time but I am learning to see my weaknesses when they arise and catch them before they get out of control.

IMG_9933

Raw vegan tacos

Life is process of healing, growth, and self discovery. Weight loss shouldn’t be about the number on the scale. It should be about finding holistic health that is in perfect balance for YOU. As mentioned above, weight loss for me wasn’t a diet, it was about changing my mindset, my relationship with food, and dealing with pain that I was hiding from. When I started to heal from ALL those issues I naturally moved to a place of balance while finding a healthy weight that was right for me. Alway remember to love yourself in whatever part of your journey you are on. We are all beautiful beings. We are all divine creations of love. So love yourself through the whole journey and remember that health is the most important thing. A healthy mind, body and soul. All three need to be in balance to achieve holistic healing.

 

Stress: How to deal with it holistically

We have all gone through times in our life that have brought about periods of struggle. When we go through these moments we tend to go back to the old crutches that may not be the healthiest for our overall health. We may reach for that bucket of ice-cream and eat it while watching an uninspiring movie that just ends up leaving us more depressed and frustrated with our current situation. Many of these coping methods that we have grown accustom to lower our internal vibration, bringing on more negative energy. I have experienced this in my life more times than I would like to admit. Everything from Postpartum Depression, job loss, illness and even death in our family.

The only way I have found holistic healing is to see the pain as a whole system. You have to understand the depths of where the pain is coming from to truly be able to treat it holistically. It’s like an empty garden. It needs hard work, nourishment, sunshine, seeds, water and loving attention. Only then will you begin to see the fruit of your labour. In life you have to face the mountain of dirt to work through it; to mould it into something beautiful. I have cultivated many tools to help me during those difficult times and support my overall health on a day to day basis. These are my tools in my holistic tool kit.

1) I enjoy exercising and moving my body. I do yoga, run on the treadmill, bike, and walk to name a few of my interests. Do whatever You enjoy. It doesn’t have to be hard, just something to get you moving out that stagnate depressed energy, and bring up the “feel good” hormones.

2) I eat a well balanced diet full of lots of raw ” living” foods ( fruits/veggies and organic/local when possible) and lots of fluids. I thoroughly enjoy my herbal tea tonics. It helps to soothe away any stress.

3) I love massage, acupuncture, chiropractor, and energy work such as reiki or healing touch. These have been shown to be extremely helpful in releasing toxins that build up in our systems due to stress. It helps relax my mind and body.

4) I enjoy spending time in nature whenever I can: I’ll hug a tree, go for a walk barefoot, sit in the sun, go swimming in the lake, or just sit outside and breath in the fresh air. I love to do anything that brings me closer to the amazing healing energy the earth provides us with.

5) I make sure to take vitamins and mineral. Our food is shipped from all of the world, picked unripe and sprayed. Food isn’t as nutritious as it used to be so I make sure to supplement is a conscious and healthy way.

6) Do your research and educate yourself on the benefits of using topical or internal therapies such as epson salt baths, aromatherapy, homeopathic, herbs, vitamin therapy incorporating superfoods, and tinctures in to your daily or weekly practices. I have used these throughout the years for various aliments and to help aid in stress release. Find what works for you.

7)  I meditate and express gratitude daily. Spending time focusing your energy on all the things that bring joy into your life can improve your mood, your outlook on life and lightens the soul. Taking time to just be still and at peace even if for only five mins a day can dramatically improve your moods.

8) I set goals for myself weekly and monthly. Whether it’s personal, fitness, or business do something that brings you happiness. Focusing on your goals can help you appreciate the growth and changes that can be seen over time.

9) I get out with friends and family. I love my alone time but I enjoy the beautiful energy that comes from surrounding myself with people I love that lift me up. Laugh and enjoy the company of your tribe of people.

10) I practice visualization, self talk, self work and affirmations. I have also enjoyed learning about the quantum mechanics of healing. It is so fascinating how effective healing can be through the mind, and power of thought.

12) My most important realization is the need for SELF LOVE. Learn to love yourself even when you are not feeling your best. Don’t be so hard on yourself. We all have our seasons in life that bring about challenges.  There is nothing ” wrong” with you and these feeling will pass as do the seasons.

IMG_6302

 

 

An open letter to light workers, healers and optimists; Never give up, the world needs your light

As John Lennon sang, “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us and the world will be as one.” I am that dreamer. As a child walking with my parents down the streets of Winnipeg, we would encounter homeless people. I would often wonder to myself, why do these people have nowhere to go? I committed myself to this idea that if I ever was a millionaire I would build apartment buildings to house these people. I would cook for them and help them get back on their feet. I know that at the tender age of six I didn’t fully grasp the extent of their situation, but I did understand something profound. I understood that the world didn’t have to be this way. That there had be a better way to co-exist and live in harmony.

Many times in my life I have been told I am idealistic. People would often tell me that world peace could never exist. That life was hard, and something you just survived. I’m not going to lie, it was hard finding the strength to stay positive when the world around me seemed to be lost in these preconceived notions that suffering was normal and even acceptable. There has been many times in my life that I lost hope. When I was in my 20s this sense of hopelessness was at it’s peak. I was deeply saddened and angry with all that was going on this world. I felt I couldn’t do anything about it, so why bother? Thoughts of negativity would swirl in my head, “Why try? I’m fighting a losing battle. No one cares anyways.” After years of living this way I created a space inside myself of such sadness, grief, and depression. The feelings of helplessness and hopeless was unbearable to live with. I knew that if I continued to live this way I was going to end up killing the very essence of who I am. Despite my struggles I knew I couldn’t deny what was my truth. I wanted to be that light for anyone in need. I wanted to inspire, and help others in any way I could. I wanted to share new ways of living and experiencing the world with a deeper sense of purpose. I wanted to live my life fighting for something instead of standing for nothing. I AM a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.

IMG_0093

The world needs more people out there that are inspiring change. Not just change on a personal level, but change on a global level. We need more doers, dreamers and believers. More light workers, healers and optimists. Don’t give up because there are things in the world around you that can discourage positivity. Don’t give up because you may be seen as different, or idealistic. Don’t give up because you were told that life is hard and you should accept what you know isn’t right. Don’t settle with being ordinary, be amazing. Be that light, if only for that one person, in that one moment. Continue to change the world around you one loving gesture at a time. Never give up, the world needs your light.

Cleansing: My holistic approach

About four times a year I find myself feeling a strong urge to cleanse my body, mind and soul. I take time to reflect on all the things I have accomplished and express gratitude for them. It is also a time to contemplate on the things in my life that may no longer be serving my higher self. I give myself the permission to take time to go inward to find clear directions on where I want to go in my life. I cleanse my mind of any negative self talk, judgments, and criticism I believe to be true about myself. I let go of old negative habits that have found their way back into my daily life and I replace these old programs with uplighting and positive affirmations.

For many centuries people have done cleanses. It has been practiced in many religions throughout history as a way to help people reconnect back to their spirituality. In nature, animals fast during times of stress, sickness or injury. We as humans naturally find ourselves cleansing our bodies whenever we get sick. Children are a great example of this. They intuitively know when there bodies need a rest to restore it’s self. Cleansing is a great way to check in with yourself and take time to nurture your whole being.

img_0350.jpg

Green Juice

The ways I choose to cleanse my body, mind and soul are:

  1. DIET: I always simplify my diet and exclude as much high vibrational foods as possible, those being fruits and vegetables, organic and local when possible. I eat a vegan plant-based diet which consists of mostly raw, unprocessed foods, although I will admit, I am not perfect and do enjoy the occasional vegan junk food. Even though I choose to eat a very clean diet I find it beneficial to take breaks and do a juice/smoothie cleanse followed by a transition period that is filled with lots of raw fruits and veggies. I have chronic stomach issues and tend to carry lots of stress in my belly. This way of cleansing helps me to release any excess tension I’m holding on to and gives my digestive system time to restore itself. The amazing benefits I notice are better sleep, cleaner skin, better recovery after my yoga practice, regular digestion and more energy just to name a few of the physical benefits. The spiritual benefits are quite profound and harder to explain. Anyone who has done an extended cleanse may understand what I’m referring to. For me, the best way I can explain the spiritual aspects of a cleanse are a new refreshing sense of clarity, a deeper connection to my higher self, nature, and the world around me.
  2. SELF DISCOVERY: During this cleansing period I always spend lots of time practicing daily meditation and personal reflection. I journal everyday and record how I’m feeling. I recognize and let go of any past traumas or negative self talk that may come to the surface during this healing time.
  3. EXERCISE: I enjoy light activities such as daily yoga, going for walks, or bike rides–anything to get the stagnant energy moving out of me.
  4. NATURE: I spend time grounding myself in nature by tending to my garden, sitting in the sun, hugging the trees, or doing really anything that makes my feel connected to the world around me.
  5. NATURAL AIDS: Some things that aid in releasing toxins out of my system, whether that is physical toxins or emotional toxins are aromatherapy, salt baths, dry brushing, drinking herbal teas, getting plenty of sleep and replenishing my body with fermented drinks and lots and lots of water.
  6. ENJOYING THE JOURNEY: Lastly, I ENJOY the process. Whether it be a 100% raw food cleanse for a month or a 7 day juice cleanse, or 10 day smoothie cleanse, I do what is right for ME. I enjoy the time I give myself to relax, reflect, restore, release and rebuild.
IMG_4862

Mediterranean style inspired vegan salad

Whatever cleansing you choose to do I strongly suggest you find what works for you and resonates with your personal needs. It could be anything from letting go of a toxic relationship to reevaluating your own damaging thought patterns. It could be as simply as cutting out junk food and processed sugars because it is beginning to have ill effects on your health. Holistic cleansing is not a quick fix to any given problem. It is instead a way to reconnect to your truth by taking time to love yourself on the journey and heal from the inside out. If you choose to make drastic changes to your diet or do a juice cleanse always do your research and consider seeking advice from a medical professional. Always make sure to go about whatever changes you’re making in your life in a holistic, healing way.

Freeing ourselves from societal labels

Have you ever sat back and pondered why we live under certain labels and expectations? We were born into a world that, depending on the generation, has certain standards that dictate to us who we should be and how we are expected to preform. Why do we struggle to release ourselves from these pressures? Is it because we are afraid of judgment from our peers? Or is it the fear of loneliness that may come from not feeling accepted by what other see as the “norm”? Perhaps, it is because we are raised to accept, without question the social conditioning, traditions, and views of the world that has been passed down to us through belief system that no longer serve a purpose? When we conform ourselves to these ideologies we can lose the essence of who we really are. We can find ourselves caged in any dogmas, with restrictions that are so narrow we find there is little to no freedom to express ourselves fully or authentically.

It can be intimating to stand up against the masses to challenge and question societal standards. One of the hardest labels I struggled to navigate was the one of “mother.”  To be honest, when I became a mother for the first time I had no idea what I was doing. I was drowning in a list of things I thought I should or shouldn’t do. Pressures from every angle made me feel like I was walking on a bed of egg shells all the time. One person would suggest I breastfed for a year but not longer or it was deemed inappropriate. Another would say,  “Don’t use cloth diapers it’s disgusting .” And don’t get me start on the vaccination debate. I felt so much pressure under this new title of “mom” that I lost the true essence of who I was. These new expectations brought with them unattainable standards. A new mom at 23, I felt lost and confused. It took me years before I finally threw up my arms up in the air in a gesture of defeat and accepted I was no label. I was just me and that was going to have to do. As my confidence grew I decided to do things differently. It took twice the amount of time to rediscover myself as it took to lose myself in the first place: it’s so easy to lose ourselves in darkness, after surrendering our authenticity and individuality.

IMG_9119

We have all felt pressures under various labels of parent, spouse, or specific gender. Freeing ourselves from these constraints can be scary but more so, empowering. I believe the more authentic you are the more others appreciate your truth. ” March to the beat of your own drum.” as the quote goes. Find the strength and confidence to be yourself and let your truth shine through. It is when we free ourselves that we find a place of pure intention. A place free of judgements and stereotypes. A place where we are allowed to blossom into the person we are meant to be. Isn’t it time we all allow ourselves the permission to follow our OWN true path?