Choose wisely my friends…

I saw this picture today and was totally struck by the truth behind it!  You are the things you feed your mind, soul, and body. 

The exciting/scary thing behind this idea is that it is your choice!  Which means it is in your control. Which means you can elevate yourself to new heights (yay) or anchor yourself where you are (boo). 

So, if you’re feeling stuck or stagnant… make the conscious choice to feed your body, mind, and soul good vibes (tastes like Nutella). 

Expansion and Contraction

I thoroughly enjoy deep diving into heart felt topics and soul shedding ideas… and I also enjoy the numbness of watching reality TV with a glass of wine and entertaining not a single deep thought.

I find that the more I know, the more weight I sometimes put on myself to DO something with that knowledge.  The more tips, tricks, insights, nuggets of knowledge that rock my world… the more I feel like I’m not doing ENOUGH with that knowledge.  What a funny place to be in sometimes.

It’s like the knowledge is taking the deepest breath, filling my lungs with ideas of magic and wonderment… and then holding it… Waiting for my outside world to start moving forward with the momentum of this knowledge like the wind behind the sails.  Only I don’t physically move forward with the changes fast enough to keep my lungs from starting to burn from holding all these magically delicious ideas just a tad too long.

Since starting a real deep dive journey into learning more about myself, I’ve had this constant tug of war between expansion (growth, learning, enlightenment) and contraction (the mind and bodies desire to keep the status quo and reject change).  I get so excited about the new things, and then want to put them into immediate action.

My fear is that if I don’t immediately act on these awesome revelations I have… that it will all just slip away and I will continue moving along in the same groove of life that I’ve already carved out for myself.  Which is a beautiful groove… but there are bigger and more expansive grooves that I’d like to explore in this life.  One where I’m badass-ier, kind-er, honest-er, and true-er to the beautiful soul that is “me” that is occupying this body during this life.

I don’t know that I have the answer to this, but I do know that I spend a lot of time giving myself permission to just chill the f*ck out and take a breath.

So cheers to internal growth, and also cheers to cutting ourselves a break when we feel like we have no fricken’ clue what to do with the excess growth sometimes!  Finally, cheers to doing the best we can with what we know right now.

A little levity for your Wednesday

Yesterday I went to the local chiropractor.  I was inspired to do this because a dear friend (and chiropractor) at a recent Cancun retreat was kind enough to adjust my neck several times while on vacation.  If you’ve never seen a neck being adjusted – imagine any zombie movie you know when the hero/heroin grabs the zombie by the face and snaps their neck.  Then insert yourself as the zombie and the chiropractor as the hero… but in a happy turn of events you survive the neck adjustment… and feel amazing on top of it.

Anyways, I wanted to continue getting adjusted (physically) and decided to seek out the local chiro in my area.  She adjusted my neck in a different manner, using a syringe looking thing with a pencil eraser on the end of it that just made this cute little popping sound.  This… is less impressive than the neck snap maneuver so I was totally not sure it would do anything.  While she was at it she adjusted my lower back mentioning that it was a little out and that it could be having an impact on my digestion… again using the magic popping pencil eraser.

Fast forward to a few hours later in the evening, my neck was SO tender and sore and my stomach was very upset.  I can’t say for sure that it was totally due to the magic pencil eraser tool or not, but regardless it was very uncomfortable.  So after taking Tylenol… and ibuprofen… I went to bed hoping that sleep would take away my aches.  I also might have farted when I got into bed.  When my husband got into bed I smelled what I am SURE was the aroma of a dead animal.  I proceeded to scold him for the next 10 minutes about not “cutting it off” before he got into bed.  He kept swearing it wasn’t his fart, but mine.  Which was NOT possible.  That kind of smell does not come out of my body.

Fast forward again to a bit later when I am in the kitchen getting some more water and tums for my belly… and I fart again… and then it occurs to me (aka hits me in the olfactory) that it WAS in fact the smell of death coming out of my very own body.  I was mortified and equally in awe that my body could make anything that smelled like that.  I did finally tell my husband that it was in fact my butt that was the offender, not his… and he graciously accepted my apology for so adamantly accusing him of the crime.  Then I told him it wasn’t my fault at all, but definitely the adjustment from the chiropractor.  It must have stirred something up.  Again, I can’t prove that for a fact, but it makes me more comfortable than any other explanation of how my body produced something so offensive.

Today all my systems seem to be functioning as expected so I’m assuming that the worst has passed.  I do have another appointment on Friday and I’m equal parts interested and terrified about what will come out of that visit.  Literally.

So, in between all the enlightenment and growth that I try to let in to each of my days… sometimes normal old flatulence gets in there too… and makes for a good story.

Moral of the story: Careful what all your physical and emotional adjustments stir up… you might be surprised!!

Positivity Takes Practice

I discovered years ago that your attitude and outlook on life greatly depends on what you spend your energy on.  This might seem like a totally obvious statement, and I would agree, but would argue that it is something that is so obvious… it’s easy to overlook.

I discovered that how I spent my spare time greatly influenced my mood.  I mean even the silly things like the conversations I chose to have, the images I chose to look at via Pinterest/Instagram/Google searches, the books I read, the movies I watched, and most importantly how I talked to myself as well.

If I spent my energy telling myself stories about how retched the world was, how evil my friends were, how the universe conspired against me… OF COURSE I then walked around with my tin foil hat and gun set to stun.  Any action that happened around me was seen through this Darth Vader type lens I was wearing.  You were either with me, or against me.  How DRAINING it was.  I spent more time conspiring than inspiring, which just equals a big fat waste of time.

So, I started spending my time with people who I aspired to be like, the kind of people that sent out that vibe of ease and acceptance of the world.  I started doing hobbies that tapped into my creativity and made me feel good about myself. I started assuming the best, and stopped the bullshit stories.  Okay, well… maybe I’m a good story teller, so I still circle a bit in fantastical fucked up stories… but in general catch myself and stop it before it can seriously alter my mood for the day.

This choice of how / who / when / what to spend my energy on… has been a game changer for me.  As I get older, I only find better ways to spend my energy.  It’s like, the more efficient I get at being positive, the more energy I have available to me to do cool shit!!  It’s a very rewarding system.  However, it is still a act that takes practice. Daily conscious practice to be positive.  CHOSE to spend my time in a way that best puts me in the path of my dreams and aspirations.  Because, I’m really hoping to continue to grow, change, and be more awesome every day/week/year of my life… and I can’t imagine doing that if I’m leaking negative energy all over the place.

So, cheers to positivity.  May it be a happy practice that everyone can incorporate into their daily lives.  I personally find that laughter, good souls, wine, cheese, and chocolate can be gateways into positivity… in case you are struggling to find it.

My Aunt, myself and my Grandmother.  A couple people who know how to radiate positivity and love.

My Aunt, myself and my Grandmother. A couple people who know how to radiate positivity and love.

Don’t worry, no one else knows what the f*ck they are doing either. 

One of the best tidbits of advice I got was given to me by my cousin Carmen 15 years ago while I was first navigating the corporate world and figuring out which jobs I was “qualified” for.

She told me that no one knows exactly how to do a job they are applying for. Also, how boring would that be. I promise that the other people in this world that are doing the thing you want to do, didn’t know how to do it when they started. 

The people who end up with their next ‘big gig’ have faith in themselves and their abilities that they will figure it out.

This little tidbit has gotten me through so many new adventures in my life that seemed scary at first. I just focus on what I want, the resources I have, and ALWAYS keep my communication skills and personal development as top priorities. The exact “how’s” just come with time. 

So – grasshopper – go for the promotion, better job, dream vacation, first date, sell the house, start the new hobby or whatever it is that you have been yearning to do… but have convinced yourself you can’t. 

Because… why not you? Why not now?

And just remember, no one else knows what the fuck they are doing either. 

‘Soul’er Panel

I was thinking today about how in order to “shine your light” onto the world, other people, etc. that you would need to actually have the light available within you to shine.  Kind of like a flashlight needing batteries or a solar yard light needing the sun.

I love this thought because so many people think that taking time for themselves (personal development, self-care, time alone, massages, etc) is a selfish act.  However, when you think of it as a necessary step in order to have the fuel/battery/power to give to others… it then becomes a necessary step in being a more altruistic person.

I personally love taking time for myself and strengthening my mental and emotional fortitude.  I love growth, a good challenge, and helping others do those same things.  If I don’t take time to grow personally, I don’t have the ammunition to help others do the same.  One of the most rewarding moments I have is when a little tidbit of information or a certain meditation practice that touched my soul, helps someone else wade through their shit when I share it.

So just imagine that your soul needs refueling just like anything else in order to be the best version of yourself. Then sit down and think about what makes you feel like you are at your best… and do it.  Do it often.  Self-care is soul-charging.

International Inspiration, growth, and sunburn. 

My first clue that I was heading back to real life was actually having to pay for my morning banana and water. After spending 5 days at an all inclusive resort in Cancun, Mexico where the water was handed out like candy at Halloween (as long as it was bottled, didn’t want to pull a Charlotte) and the food was abundant, it seemed natural to have a residual desire to just pick something up and walk away with it (a case of the sticky fingers). I left the resort feeling like royalty and I guess it takes a while to shake that off. Clearly the people at the Cancun airport aren’t aware of my recent royal status. I’m returning home with a couple additional tangible things. 

  • A healthy sunburn, despite my best Midwest attempts at multiple sunscreen applications. 
  • A pink and tan corona cowboy hat (this will make sense when I touch down in Wisconsin later where autumn is in full swing, but made total sense at the time of purchase poolside). 
  • A wooden carved turtle. Very delicate with intricate designs on the shell. I’m imaging that a local spent a good deal of time and poured love into making it. But for four American dollars, it could also be a oriental trading trinket as well. I will choose to believe the former. 

I also carry with me a few tokens and gifts from the other ladies of the retreat. Which, hands down are my most treasured additions. 

The other “stuff” I bring home is the intangible, the things only I can see and acknowledge… and thankfully don’t add weight to my luggage. The emotional, mental, spiritual, soul and waistline growth (again – all inclusive resort). The promise of hope and sensation of being about 17% more badass than when I landed here five days ago. 

There were a total of 18 in our little tribe at this retreat. Two fearless guides throughout the process and 16 other fearless women who eagerly and awesomely followed in every footstep… even if they couldn’t quite see where it would lead. 
The 16 of us grasshoppers came with open hearts, minds and sun sunscreen. We laughed, we cried, we sang, we danced, we crafted, we made promises to ourselves, we held hands, hugged, shared stories and sometimes shared silence. When all that was done, we shared dessert. 

If you are trying to visualize what this tribe of women might look like, go to Pinterest or Instagram and search for “tribe” or “friend goals”. Then, add more humans to that picture, vary the ages, races, economic means and body sizes. 

Once you have this group of women in your mind, strip them of their earlthy descriptions and just imagine 16 souls that decided to take the leap from stranger to soul sister. 16 souls that carved time out from their family, friends, hobbies and careers to invest in themselves and really dig into some deep shit. Imagine therapy without the couch, more magic, homework and then add chocolate. 

How did I even get into this beautiful cluster of growth?  One word: Cancun. I’d like to pretend my intentions were noble. That I signed up knowing that I had all this pent up possibility and purpose just waiting to be unleashed from my fingertips. But no. I saw pictures of super happy women, on the beach, having a wonderful time (and margaritas)… and I wanted in on that hot action. 

Imagine my surprise when I really started digging into the program and found out there would be work. Home work. Soul work. Tribe work. Booty work (jk… but there was dancing). I didn’t know I’d be holding the hands, secrets, fears and aspirations of these beautiful women throughout this process.. and then holding mine. Make no mistake, I definitely thought long and hard about it… then thought, “fuck it… what’s the worst that can happen?  I go to Cancun, meet some cool chicks, and maybe even become a better person???” I’ve signed up for worse things in the past. 

So… eight and a half months later with two retreats, many phone calls, and a few breakthrough and breakdowns in my rear view mirror, the question is… would I do it again?  Absofuckinglutely. I feel more spiritually flexible, I believe in a little more magic, and definitely have found a softness and kindness towards myself that I didn’t know before. This new kindness has allowed me to really feel that softness towards all the women in the world. Which has lead to more genuine interactions. More conversations rooted in integrity. A little less bull shit and a lot more fun. 

In summary – if you get the chance to do something that will make you feel wildly uncomfortable, question your core beliefs, and maybe go somewhere tropical with people who will be strangers when it all begins… 


And send me an invite. 

Peace out.