It’s All Yoga

 

It has been a winter of the deepest self-care and self-reflection. Water has been my savior – salt baths, float therapy and the sweat from my hot yoga practice – I do not take it for granted. 

Ah, the yoga. Where or where would I be without the yoga?? You may or may not know that yoga has been the most transformational tool in my life. Yoga came me in 2004 via my awesome friend Lindsey who worked with me at a restaurant in San Francisco. She was going through a teacher training at the time and needed students to practice with. Back then I had no idea that attending those intimate weekly classes would lead to such profound personal growth. Thus sparked this little yogini’s powerful journey.

I’ve received so many benefits through the practice and study of yoga over the past 13 years, the most profound learning being the embodiment of connectivity. 

Sometimes people ask me why I don’t teach yoga even though I’m a certified YT (and trained by the most amazing teachers at Greenhouse Holistic, my Brooklyn yoga home). I usually reply that Ido teach yoga, however I do not focus on teaching asana (the physical postures). Asana is only one aspect of yoga. In fact, there are eight limbs of yoga and the poses are just one. 

The word Yoga is derived from the Sanskrit root “yuj”, which means to yoke or join. Throughout my journey, I have become fascinated with not only how this practice assists in uniting mind, body and spirit, but about how it’s ALL connected – thoughts, emotions, pleasures, pains, relationships, addictions, medicines, the moon, the earth and stars. The Universe is a beautiful mess of synchronistic energy and we have the utter privilege of fine-tuning the inner workings of our own selves in each moment in order feel more connected to the divine source of ALL. 

This yoga life is pretty sweet, I must say. If you know me well or we’ve had the opportunity to work together, then you know that the focus of my yoga teaching is to zoom in on that beautiful heart chakra of yours and uncover all the things that keep you feeling disconnected from divine source. I aim to shine a moonbeam on every single bit that needs attention and love. That awareness is what ultimately frees you from the restrictions and limitations that hold you separate from your own divinity.

You’re always welcome to contact me to discuss more. In related news, I’m so excited for the next course of study! My best girl and magical creative healer Halley Miglietta and I have just began a six month Energy Work and Psychic Reading program. I can’t wait to share more with you along the way. In the meantime, feel free to reach out or find me at my upcoming events. 

Love and light,

Michelle

5 Ways to Ground, Protect and Clear Your Energy

“When chaos is all around you, the wisest choice is to create peace within you. Your peace shines outward and supports the creation of a new harmony.” – Yung Pueblo

Wow, the world right now! Challenging times on both the collective and individual levels have many feeling mad, confused and depressed. A friend recently posted on Instagram about how angry she is regarding current events and that it’s “not always about choosing love.” I replied that acknowledging her anger yet expressing it wisely IS choosing love. The human experience requires us to feel the whole spectrum of emotions, not only the light and happy feels. When we receive hard news, our reactions can either help the situation at hand or make matters worse. We may not have the power to change other people’s decisions, but we do have the power to maintain our own sense of well being. 

The thing is, we often forget how easily we can absorb the negative energy of others (or dish it out). In fact, some such as myself are highly sensitive and feel the low vibes of others so acutely that we can quite literally feel like we are carrying the weight of the world. So when things get chaotic and emotions run high, it’s important to pay attention to how we are managing our own energy in order to protect ourselves AND contribute to peace on a larger scale. As a reiki energy healing goddess, I’d love to share some tips on how to ground, protect and clear your energy every day.

  1. Center yourself in the a.m. – Oh how I sing from the high hills the benefits of a morning routine! My ME time in the morn is non-negotiable. While my personal routine is fairly lengthy – usually about an hour for breakfast/coffee, meditation, prayer, intentions and oracle cards – yours doesn’t have to be. Even just a few moments of sitting still and focusing on your breath within your body or writing/speaking your intentions can help to ground your energy before you take on the day. Operating from a grounded place throughout the day will help you make wiser choices regarding your self-care, which in turn will improve every area of your life. 
  2. Balance your blood sugar – We could all still use some reminders when it comes to nourishing our bodies in a healthy way. Ditch the processed foods and over-consumption of addictive substances like sugar/caffeine/alcohol. You may think those “foods” give you comfort or help keep you energized throughout the day, but if over-used, they actually dull your spirit, keep you on a blood sugar roller coaster and make you more susceptible of absorbing harmful energy. Make sure you’re stocked up on life-affirming foods and bevs and cook at home more often than you dine out in order to keep your energy clear and grounded. 
  3. Minimize the media – Put the Facebook down and walk away from the Facebook! If you’re constantly glued to social media or the news, please give your sweet being a break from the dang screens. Even if it’s just for a hour at a time, turn off the constant chatter and bring your focus back to your life in the present moment. FB has been especially full of toxic energy lately. Again, you don’t have control over other people’s opinions and choices, but you do have the power to protect your own energy by choosing who, when and how to engage. As a HSP (highly sensitive person), I’ve recently had to draw some clear boundaries with social media usage in order to protect myself and keep the peace. Be mindful of how it’s effecting you and adjust your involvement accordingly.
  4. Check in with your own heart – When you have successfully minimized your media time, you are no longer so concerned with what everyone else is feeling/doing and you can bring your awareness back to who matters most – YOU. May I remind you that it is certainly not selfish to put you first, in fact the world needs you to care about your own heart first and foremost. Allowing yourself to get in touch with your own feelings and express them healthily – via clear communication, journaling, music, art or body movement to name a few ways – releases all the stuck energy that keeps you wound in a tight ball of stress. When you free yourself of those heavier energies, your true inner light will shine through and you’ll positively affect those around you. 
  5. Clear your field – Your aura overlays your physical self and interacts with your mind, body and spirit. It’s like a magnet that picks up foreign, dark vibes everywhere you go. I’ve already discussed a few ways to keep yourself grounded, clear and less susceptible to picking up (or passing on) these types of  energies, but sometimes we need some additional tools to help clear our energy fields. My favorite ways to “cleanse” are meditation, prayer, being in nature (Mama Earth will gladly take your negative energy and recycle it into something beautiful), taking sea salt baths, sound healing, smudging with sage or palo santo, and using crystals and stones. You can find a few of these tools and more at Sunlight of the Spirit on J. Reiki is also a very powerful energy healing modality, so please inquire if you are interested. 

Here’s to you taking great care of your beautiful energy! May you radiate your self-love and peace for all the world to heal. 

Namaste,

Michelle

Heal Your Habits

Good day! I hope your hearts are filled with hope from the powerful energy this weekend. I’m still in awe of all the goddesses who gathered world wide in peace and unity. My personal (enormous) goddess posse cures my life, so it’s beautiful to to see the world get a big dose of divine feminism.  

As the current times call for us to gather and speak up for justice and peace, my mission to help individuals find peace within themselves is stronger than ever. The world needs healing on all levels!

My most recent clients have been coming to me expressing all kinds of physical ailments and emotional turbulences. Many of them also share how they default to those quick senses of satisfaction (as mentioned in my last email) in order to dull or numb painful experiences. 

The real solution to making our lives more manageable is to slow down, pay attention and receive the underlying messages of our bodies and emotions.
 
My unwanted habits are what got me into this whole healing business. I used to consume way to much alcohol and my roughest nights of blackout drinking forced me to make a major life change. I was a hot mess until I finally decided that enough was enough! Once I was able to (finally!) let go of what was not serving my highest and best, the quality of my life improved tremendously. Since then, and throughout my 12-year healing journey, I have acquired many holistic tools for self-awareness that help me sustain a healthy lifestyle.
 
Heal Your Habits is an opportunity to explore how your unwanted behaviors are actually a gift, meeting them with curiosity instead of judging yourself so harshly. Together, we will explore how you can meet yourself with more compassion, awareness, and receive the real underlying messages of our bodies and emotions. By bringing more awareness and light to the darker parts of yourself, you can learn to make more empowering choices for yourself and your life.

I believe the more honest, compassionate and gentle we can be with ourselves, the more peace we radiate out. So let’s keep it kind on the inside first and foremost. 

To learn more about Heal Your Habits, click HERE.  Please feel free to share this info with anyone you think may benefit. 

Love and light, 

Michelle

“The first and best victory is to conquer self.” – Plato

Cultivating Cleanliness in the New Year

Oh 2016, you played so dirty! A year of great loss, environmental degradation, and political corruption – just a few layers of the muck we’ve had to walk through. Many people who I’ve been in contact with have experienced a load of depression, anxiety, exhaustion and disappointment. Not everyone had such a tough time, but many got spattered by the harsh energies this year pelted toward us. 

Personally, I got swept away in the drama of it all.  A broken heart, family illness and the ebbs business and finance were too stressful for me to deal. In addition to my individual woes, all the chaos happening on the collective level completely overwhelmed my sensitive, empathic being. I couldn’t decipher between my own painful feelings and the energy I was absorbing from the world. I found myself saying fuck it to my usual grounding spiritual practices and slipping back into old, unhealthy habits and relationships. I was certainly reminded of how easy it is to ignore and escape my issues rather than responsibly solve them.

Well, surely those quick fixes only work for a short amount of time. The longer we use (and abuse) anything outside of ourselves to numb out or fill the void, the deeper we dive into the vicious cycle of the behavior and the harder it gets to set ourselves free. This goes for any avenue we are looking to escape through, whether it’s food, substances, relationships, or what’s-on-the-screen. 

One my favorite spiritual gurus and astrology extraordinaire, Kaypacha (as well other light leaders), has deemed 2016 “the year of purification”, meaning that what has been lying deep within the collective (un)consciousness is now emerging to be seen and purified. Everything has been rising to the surface in order for us to face our demons with loving grace and to stop limiting the expansion of human awareness. 

In my own experience, I feel very fortunate that my awareness is now keen to the point that I cannot waver too far from my path of truth. A good friend recently said to me “God has you on a short leash. ” So true. Try as I might to return to my old ways, but Source will steer me in the right and light direction soon enough. About a month ago, around Thanksgiving, I woke up out of the illusion of lack and remembered that I am so powerful!  From that point, I started to purge any and all that was not serving my highest and best good – the unwanted behaviors, the toxic relationships and the general self-unworthiness. 

To the demons I came into very close contact with this year: the door to the past is CLOSED, muthafuckas. You shall not pass!! I am emerging into 2017 as a mean, clean, manifesting machine! 

And of course, as always, I am here to help you do the same. I have space for 3 new coaching clients at the beginning of the new year. So if you are as serious as I am about following the path of your highest self, then simply email me to schedule a Discovery Session. I’m happy to support you in letting go of addictions, loving the (seemingly) dark side of yourself, deepening your intuition, creating healthy boundaries and nourishing your mind, body and soul. 

Wishing you a pure and happy new year! 

Love and light, 

Michelle
“There’s no room for demons when you’re self-possessed.”  – Carrie Fisher

Full Moon + Summer Love

 

sun-and-moon-yin-yingHow about a full moon and the longest day of the year to start your  week off powerfully? 

I just got back from a quick trip to the Northern Cali coast with my mom where we sat on the beach for hours witnessing the wild tides of Mother Earth… Universal truth is that all things – seen and unseen – are connected, so the more we can tune in to the cycles of nature, the more in-tune we feel. 

The full moon symbolizes the completion of the cycle, the end of the chapter. It illuminates that which we are ready to let go of. It is a powerful time to release in order to create space for gratitude and love. 

Things to consider with this moon: What’s holding you back from proceeding in a new direction that is more promising for your future? What is the source of your negative programming and which patterns keep repeating?… 

“The supernatural forces of Summer create heat in the Heavens and fire on Earth; they create the heart and the pulse within the body… the color red, the tongue, and the ability to express laughter… they create the bitter flavor, and the emotions of happiness and joy.”  – from the Inner Classic, an ancient text on Chinese medicine, on the major Fire Element correspondence

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the fire element is associated with summer. Fire is symbolic of yang, which means that it is a time of expansion, lightness, creativity and moving outward in nature and in our lives. It can be a fun and carefree season but you also may feel overextended, overworked or even overjoyed. Too much of anything – yes, even joy – causes imbalance in your body, mind and spirit. When the fire element is balanced, the heart is strong and healthy, the mind is calm and sleep is sound.

Since summer is associated with fire, we need to cool down with more water. Fire is yang, which is associated with feelings of aggression, loudness and busyness. Water is yin and plays out as passive, quiet and relaxed moods. When fire and water are properly balanced, our health and vitality flourish. 

Here’s a list of fruits, veggies, and fresh herbs that will help your body adjust its temperature and protect you during the long, hot summer days:

Watermelon, cantaloupe, apricot, lemon, lime, orange, peach, cucumber, celery, snow peas, bok choy, radishes, sprouts, summer squash, zucchini, cabbage, broccoli, seaweed, sprouts, corn, potatoes, lettuce, spinach, chard, watercress, cilantro, dill, and mint.

More tips for staying cool and balanced this season: 

  • Awaken early in the morning and reach to the sun for nourishment.
  • Cook foods lightly, steam or simmer foods as quickly as possible, use little salt and more water.
  • Eat in moderation. Over consumption of any food, especially cooling foods, can lead to indigestion and sluggishness.
  •  Avoid ice-cold drinks and have room-temp water instead. Summer heat combined with too much cold drink & food (ahem, ice cream) weakens the digestive organs. Coldness causes contraction it will hold in the heat. 
  • Drink mint, chamomile and chrysanthemum tea. 
  • Refrain from anger; keep calm and even-tempered.

Hope you stay cool, calm and content this summer!

Love and light, 

Michelle

Expanding Community

67b46c7ab3cdbeec11a3e8de80023206I hope this lovely Spring season is treating you well, friend… 

I’ve been feeling extra grateful lately – for my humble abode, for always being well fed, for the beautiful neighborhood I live in, for my core group of friends & family who support me in a heartbeat, and for the beautiful community I have the privilege of being of service to. 

Speaking of community, it is my intention to grow and expand my services in order to support more people on their journeys to health and happiness. 

Some of my lovely clients & friends have been wanting to share my work with others and refer clients to me, but have expressed that it’s challenging to describe what I do because I help with so many things! (I know, I’m somewhat of a Jane-of-all-holistic-trades). So here’s a more concise description of what I do: 

I help people transform negative lifestyle habits (aka addictions and other unwanted behaviors) into healthy rituals of self-care in order to feel more confident, make meaningful connections, and experience personal contentment. 

In our fast-paced culture, it can be challenging to manage a busy lifestyle. With so much to do, we easily get overwhelmed, confused, burned out, anxious, depressed and irritable. We lose the focus and energy required to properly take care of ourselves and our loved ones. We tend to look for quick senses of satisfaction to escape daily stressors – overeating, overworking, drinking too much alcohol, sugar, TV, social media, sex, excessive shopping, and jam-packing the schedule so that there’s no room for down time. 

The real solution to making our lives more manageable is to slow down, pay attention and receive the underlying messages of our bodies and emotions.

We can’t change until we first identify what we truly need in order to heal. 

I believe in holistic healing. All parts of ourselves – physical, mental, emotional, spiritual – are interconnected and therefore must all be given equal attention and care. Throughout my 11 year healing journey, I have found my own unique path to wellness through many different modalities including holistic nutrition, yoga, meditation and energy work. I’m here to share wisdom and support you in finding your own healthy rhythm of life. 

We are the creators of our own reality. We have the power to make better choices to improve our health and our lives. Let’s elevate our consciousness and vibrations together in order to create all that we need, desire, and deserve. 

Please let me know if you have any questions and feel free to forward this to those who may benefit. Love and light to you! 

Michelle

Basic Body Care + Spring Sale

Hello Spring! 
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The northern hemisphere is officially in bloom and Mama Nature is beckoning us outside to play… Time to get reacquainted with the Earth. 

At the beginning of the year, I had my natal birth chart read by an astrologer. If you’ve never had a chart reading, I highly recommend it. It’s the roadmap of your soul’s intent in this lifetime. My astrology session confirmed so many aspects of myself and opened my eyes to others. One of the fun things I learned in my reading was that I have NO earth planets in my chart. All of the planets at my time of birth are equally balanced in water/air/fire but no earth. This makes SO much sense! No wonder I more easily identify as a spiritual seeking mermaid moon goddess than a creature of land. This also explains that when my life is imbalanced, I tend to feel anxious and ungrounded. It’s all confirmation that my regular body practices such as yoga, meditation and nutrition are very important for me. If I didn’t have such practices to help me root in my body, my ethereal self may easily be swept away into the stars! 

Regardless of how many earth planets you have in your birth chart, we can all benefit from connecting more deeply and lovingly with our sweet earth vessels. Since we are holistic beings, the way you treat your body affects your mental, emotional and spiritual health as well. 

As we welcome the beauty of this brand new season, let’s get down to earth with my top tips for Basic Body Care: 

1) Grocery shop/ Food prep. I am a huge fan of routine and preparation for optimal health. Routine and prep help to ground us in our body practices and reduce stress, anxiety and lack of focus. Take time each week to map out a few meals, get to the store for ingredients, and dedicate a couple of hours to prepping meals in the beginning of the week. This will prevent you from eating out/ eating sporadically since you’ll already have food prepared for the week ahead. You’ll save time and money too. A beautiful client of mine used Cook the Seasons in addition to her coaching program with me and loved it. 

2) Cleanse/ Eat grounding foods. Springtime is a wonderful time for a cleanse. You don’t have to do anything extreme in order to give your body a nice little jumpstart. Check out this post for basic cleansing tips. For additional support in rooting into your body, add more root veggies to your diet like beets, carrots, turnips, parsnips, rutabaga and sweet potatoes. If you find yourself feeling anxious and unfocused, these foods will help ground your energy. 

3) Yoga/ Exercise. Make sure that you are moving that body of yours! Whether it’s going to the gym, a yoga or fitness class, riding a bike, going for a run, or taking a 5-minute dance break, move it. I love moving my body because it gets me out of my (sometimes chaotic) mind and in touch with my breath and body. When I’m able to clear my mind and sweat out any toxins that may keep me feeling stuck or sluggish (mentally/physically), I have way more energy and clarity to both take care of business and find time to be leisurely. I like to map out my yoga classes and workouts for the week ahead (there’s that routine thing again). Yoga is an especially beneficial tool for balancing. From an energetic standpoint, practicing the physical balancing postures consistently will help you find balance in all other areas of your life. 

4) Meditation. Meditation is not only a mindfulness practice but a chance to connect with your body through breath and stillness. Actually, the whole point of yoga (asana, the postures) is to prepare the body for meditation. Tara Brach is among my favorite meditation teachers. Check her website for guided medis and more. 

5) Sleep. A good night’s sleep affects everything from energy to mood to metabolism. Be sure you are sleeping adequately each night. Reduce or eliminate use of electronics close to bedtime. Get on a good sleep schedule. Go to bed/ wake up around the same time each day. I have found that the 11:30pm – 7:30am sleep sched is perfect for my body. I was a vampire in my former life and that was well, an unhealthier time. 

6) Positive self-talk. To improve body image and overall health, please speak to yourself in gentler, more neutral language as you evaluate your body. If it’s a challenge for you to feel good about your body, then speaking kindly to yourself is a must. As you look in the mirror, make it a point to focus on a positive feature and give yourself at least one compliment. Appreciate your body’s natural gifts, talents and abilities. Your body is your temple, treat it as so in all ways especially with your thoughts and words. 

7) Go outside. One of the best ways to get grounded is to simply be in nature. Plant your bare feet in the grass, lay in the sand, hug a tree… Be grateful for all the beauty and wonder that surrounds you. Our earth mama is so nurturing. May we respect and honor her as she heals our bodies, minds and spirits each day. 

To further support you in your health and life practices this Spring, I’d like to introduce my Spring Sale! Check out my offerings below, all are valid until April 15, 2016. Please email me with any inquiries or to schedule a healing session. 

“Every cell in my body is loved.” – Louise Hay affirmation

Much love, 

Michelle 

Spring Sale! 

Holistic Health & Life Coaching Session

I’ll help you get clear on your health & life goals, uncover and release any blocks that are holding you back, and discover exactly what you need in order to experience more freedom and success. 

A single 60-min private session (via phone or in-person)
$110 

(save $15)
 

Reiki Energy Healing Sessions

For stress relief, emotional clearing and relaxation, try Reiki!
For more information on how Reiki might benefit you, click HERE.

60-min in-person $80
45-min distance $60
(save $15)

Oracle Card Reading

A card reading will gently yet effectively provide clarity,
guidance & support for you to become more empowered in your life!

$20 (via phone or in-person)

It’s Time To Lighten Up!

unnamedHappy March!

I hope this finds you very well! I’m sorry I missed you last month. My father had a stroke at the beginning February so my energy was directed toward him for most of the month. It has been quite a journey and at this stage, I’m just really grateful for my family’s support. Needless to say, the incident has been exhausting for all involved but this has brought us together in a significant way. My dad is currently in an acute rehab receiving lots of physical therapy and his recovery is progressing well.

As we all know, sometimes life seems to pull the rug out from underneath us and as challenging as these times can be, they are also the greatest catalysts for healing and growth. For me, regarding this situation with my dad, it has been an opportunity to heal old wounds around the relationship. I have certainly done a lot of work to heal family stuff along my path but there’s always room for more love. Being with my father through this process has opened me up to deeper levels of forgiveness, acceptance, patience and trust. I’m aware that this all happened in order to strengthen the ties between us.

In speaking with clients over the past few weeks, I’ve gathered that painful circumstances and big change has been the name of the game. It seems like the Uni has been giving us the ultimate test! The truth is, we have all attracted these experiences into our lives in order to change ourselves. WE are responsible for all that we see before us. The test is how we manage our own energy in response to what’s going on around us.

As we transition out of the heaviness of winter, how about we make the conscious choice to lighten up a bit, shall we? There are many beneficial tools for shifting your energy in a positive way. Here are 10 suggestions on how to lighten up!

1) Clear the Clutter. Get started on your spring cleaning early and get rid of all the things that are getting in your way. Take out the papers and the trash or you don’t get no spendin’ cash…

2) Swap Clothes. While you’re clearing the clutter, don’t forget to clean out your closet. Spring is already here in California, so we can put the sweaters away and get the sandals out. Otherwise, you can simply fill a bag with clothes you’re no longer thrilled about and give it away. Create space for new spring duds.

3) Eat Clean. If you want to feel lighter in your mind, then stop feeding your body heavy, rich and toxic foods. Three foods you can eliminate immediately in order to lighten up are processed foods (anything in a package really), fried foods and sugar. Focus on eating whole, fresh foods and observe how this affects your mood.

4) Buy Fresh Flowers. Now that your space is nice and clean, brighten it up with some pretty flowers or a new house plant. There’s something so sweet about buying flowers for yourself. It’s an act of self-love.

5) Assess Your Relationships. In order to lighten the load, it’s important to release toxic relationships. My practice with this is to focus on giving my energy to the people who make me feel my best, where the love is reciprocated. Don’t waste your energy giving to those who are shut down and unable to give back.

6) Go for a Long Walk. This has been my new favorite thing, my happy hour. Taking a long walk gets the blood moving and clears the mind. Utilize your walk to think about the things you desire and feel the excitement of manifesting those things all throughout your body.

7) Choose a New Thought. Lighten up by simply (and powerfully) changing your mind. If the usual doubt and negativity creeps in, pause and say “thank you for your concern but I’m choosing to go in a different direction today.” Then replace that thought with either a positive affirmation or an image of what you desire. (You might have to do this a few hundred times a day, but keep doing it)!

8) DANCE! Seriously the best medicine ever. Take a 5 minute dance break at least once a day to raise your frequency. If you know me well, then you know I am singing and dancing to the rap and r&b jams all day, errday!

9) Sit in the Sunshine. Sun = Light. Mmmmm, feels so good.

10) Laugh Your Ass Off. Watch a comedy show or hang with someone who makes you giggle. I laugh the most when I’m with my sister Maren, who’s been making me cry-laugh for 36 years!

I hope this inspires and empowers you to lighten your life! May we have gratitude for the tough times we’re moving through and the tough times we’ve overcome. As we pay loving attention to those darker places within us, we are lead to tremendous healing and happiness. I’m sending you so much sweetness for the month ahead.

Love,
Michelle

Dream Big in 2016

Happy New Year!rsz_6950625693_9755a31cb0_b

I hope you had a wonderful holiday season. As we gracefully move into 2016, it’s the perfect time to hit the reset button and think about what we want in the year ahead. While you may have tried the whole “New Year’s resolutions” thing in the past – which most likely failed because you were being too strict with yourself – I’d like to invite you to try a much more awesome approach to welcoming the new year – DREAM. 

You see, the resolution thing is really no fun. It usually involves some sort of a declaration that you’re going to do this or that or give up something (that you probably enjoy) and when you don’t follow through with your word, you end up feeling guilty, anxious, or frustrated with yourself. Totally counterintuitive to your probable desired feelings. 

So how about trying a little manifestation magic this time around? Instead of setting limitations on yourself, just dream. Sit down with a pen and paper and make a list of what you really want for yourself this year. Think through every detail of what you desire for every area of your life – health and body, career, finances, relationships, and personal desires. Also note how having these things in your life will make you feel. You can be as specific and detailed as you like, but don’t worry about how you’re going to get what you want. The “how” will be done after you get really clear about what’s possible for yourself. 

I did this exercise last year and when I recently reflected on my pages of written dreams, I was surprised at how many things had come to fruition. This is also how I begin every Discovery Session with my clients. My first question is always “What do you want?” And it’s always amazing to see what manifests in their lives after working together for a series of sessions. 

You are more powerful than you know. I encourage you to put some time and thought into what would make you the happiest person alive this year. Know that you are worthy and deserve the very best!

Love, 

Michelle

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” – Marianne Williamson

 

How to Stay Centered in December

 

rsz_december-pictures-2015It’s the most wonderful time of the year! It’s also one of the busiest, right? With the holidays approaching, it can get super hectic with wrapping up school semesters & work-related projects, attending holiday parties, hosting family, traveling, shopping for gifts, cooking and more.  It’s easy to get stressed and overwhelmed with it all if we’re not mindful. It’s also easy to overindulge – with drinking too much, overeating, over-shopping, etc. So how can you stay centered through this busy season (and beyond)?

There are so many self-care tips and tools I suggest to my clients, but I’m just going to share one of the most effective today – mindful eating. You see, the way you do one thing is the way you do everything. So the way that you eat correlates to everything else you do in your life. And since you’re most likely eating at least three times a day, mealtime is the perfect time to practice mindfulness.

Mindfulness is the intentional, accepting and nonjudgmental focus of one’s attention on the emotions, thoughts, and sensations occurring in the present moment. 

Who are you being when you eat? Are you moving at warp speed? Constantly eating on the go? Multi-tasking during the meal? Engaging in gossip? These are all ways in which we feed the stress response, which destroys our metabolism and creates digestive upset.

Stress is the opposite of relaxation. When do we feel stressed? Mostly when we are moving too fast. If you’ve worked for a stronger metabolism (or been trying to lose weight, etc.) but have not achieved success, there’s one basic reason – YOU ARE MOVING TOO FAST! When you’re moving through life too fast you inevitably eat fast, which destroys your metabolism and creates digestive upset. It results in meals eaten under a physiologic stress- response, which diminishes our calorie-burning power.

The slower you eat, the faster you metabolize. The more relaxed you are, the more energy you will have throughout the holiday hustle and bustle. So your task is to do something of great difficulty: slow down and relax!

Here are some suggestions for slowing down at mealtimes: 

  • If you usually eat breakfast in 5 minutes, take 10. If you normally take 10 minutes, take 15.
  • Give yourself at least 30 minutes for lunch and dinner.
  • As best you can, enroll your family, friends and co-workers, in creating more time and relaxation with meals.
  • Find a clean quiet place to eat.
  • Eliminate distractions –  tv, radio, phones.
  • Light a candle or play soft music.
  • Pray or set an intention.
  • Align your posture and take a few deep breaths.
  • Put your utensil down in between bites.
  • Continue to concentrate on chewing.
  • Admire the visual qualities of your food, or close your eyes partially or fully.
  • Stop eating when you’re 80% full so you’re satisfied but not stuffed.
  • After eating say thanks.
  • Sit and talk after your meal.
  • Take a light stroll after your meal.

As you start to become more mindful at mealtimes, I guarantee you’ll also notice yourself being more present in all other areas of your life. I hope this info is helpful for you. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me with questions and comments. Wishing you a beautiful December! 

Love, 

Michelle