The second in the series of videos in my anti-diet manifesto to feed ourselves love and make peace with how we nourish ourselves. Email me for the worksheets.
The second in the series of videos in my anti-diet manifesto to feed ourselves love and make peace with how we nourish ourselves. Email me for the worksheets.
With the new year looming down on me, I found myself ( yes just like so many other people without the 20 years experience that I have) feeding the fears. The fears of ‘not enough’ not thin enough, beautiful enough and on and on it went.
I decided that I would put myself on a certain diet regime and that would guarantee that I would be ‘enough’ Well my lovelies that is not how it works and just in time I recognised the fact that I was coming from a place of fear and rectified my course. Violá Feed Yourself Love was created. A manifesto of sorts to come back to when we have forgotten how perfect we really are with all our inherent imperfections. You are exactly where your meant to be. Feed yourself love, and watch your relationship with food transform. This is the first of 4 videos. Email me for the worksheets (all free)
Single by choice or circumstance, know that love and connection is always available to us.
The sun the moon and the stars are still ours to orbit with.
The pull of the tides ours to travel on.
Keep your heart wide open your boundaries intact, your love clearly visible of all to see shining through our eyes.
Ours is a different story.
Sing your song with pride.
* So I first posted this in 2014 after an almost May to August work bender… I absolutely do not recommend anyone doing anything so bonkers but here’s how I mostly pulled it off and tips that now really do work to keep things sane with it gets crazy!
If you ask someone you bump into in the coffee shop or at the school drop off how their day is you’ll be quite used to hearing people say. Busy. Like busy covers everything somehow.
I caught myself saying it as I rushed from one thing to the next from one appointment to the next, even from fun enjoyable things like dinner with friends I was racing.
Now its likely that if this sounds like you, your what Dr Libby Weaver has coined a ‘rushing woman’ in her book Rushing Womens Syndrome. If you’ve had a treatment with me its at this point I would be talking to you about your Kidney energy and running on your adrenals.
What I did notice is that for me at this particular time I caught myself a good bit of the stress and the rush wasn’t just from the feeling that I had ‘so many things to do’ but from the feeling that I wasn’t actually getting the things I needed done…. and thats because I wasn’t.
I was over-scheduled and underproductive. So if this sounds like you I have a few tips that have really helped.
1. Step away from the coffee pot! I’m serious. Now I’m not going to tell you to stop drinking coffee…. although I may be suggesting that your relationship with it needs re-evaluation. Coffee is as Elmo says a ‘sometimes food’ and if you cant imagine your day being successful with out it (as I have been guilty of) then you may need some relationship counseling!
At the very least please don’t inhale that early morning cup on an empty stomach as its almost impossible to come back from the adrenalin blood sugar roller-coaster if you do. Hint …..its also almost impossible to think clearly and rationally if your brain is not getting an even stream of glucose.
2. If your were a triage nurse in a hospital how would you rate your to do list? The triage nurse is the person in charge of rating all the bleeding moaning and wounded that walk in the door so the most life threatening ailments get dealt with first. Apply this to your daily planner and the jobs that are at the bottom of this list that aren’t really that important you…
3. Delegate them Date them (for another day and time that is more spacious) or you Ditch them… seriously I have found old lists, usually in the bottom of a handbag somewhere with random stuff on the end of a list that has NEVER been done I often cant even remember why it would have warranted being put on the list in the first place. And for those times when you are truly very tightly scheduled and its just the way it is and you chose it that way (oh boy really!) Here’s three things that will get you through.
Mindfulness. You can only be where you are right now. So be there. Your breath will help with this.
So for example when your replying to emails thats all your doing. And breathing slow and steady into your belly to remind your body that there is no need to switch on adrenaline. You aren’t being chased by a saber tooth tiger your doing emails, or getting on board a plane, or treating clients. Thats it. (that thing that you do when your at you computer and you forget to breath, it has a name now, its called screen apnea, breath please people!)
And how do you stay so calm and mindful in that moment, without freaking out thinking fuck! I forgot to call xxxx.
Heres how: As far ahead as is possible and sensible set a day or a couple of days in a week depending on what sort work bender your going into and be Extremely Crazy Efficient. You sit yourself down look at the time frame of the work ahead and you brain storm every single last thing that you are going to need over that time frame for you to be organised on time well fed loved and happy. Everything. Are you going to need new warm socks, yes? well put them on the list right next to the flights and the hotel.
Heading these lists with dates or locations so you do them in order is a great way to start. So on my 30 day non-stop bender I had lists Headed Mudgee, Sydney, Melbourne, Sarah’s Party etc in order of when they were happening and on those list heart shaped post it notes with what I needed to do (I am rather visual!) I eventually sat each of these lists on top of piles of clothing or equipment that was needed for each event so as I got to it I could cross reference anything else I needed to grab as it happened. It’s much easier to sit down and do just the one type of thing and get it all done.
So go through and order everything that needs to be ordered, sourcing gifts booking hotels and flights. Then you know its all done and your not trying to multitask which we know that really doesn’t work. You might choose to have this all digitally organised (I am deeply attached to my post it notes) however you do it, having it all laid out really helps so when your tired and not possibly at your best you know its all waiting there for you. I’m a pretty small operation but this works even better in a bigger set up so you can send it out to your assistants to pick things up without having to hunt around.
Last but almost most importantly is Boundaries. Serious rock your socks boundaries. For this one we kinda need to bring back that triage nurse, where the triage nurse is now in charge of incoming phone calls and email requests for your time and energy. For a relatively short term work bender the answer will quite simply be no. Fullstop. No I’m completely fully booked ( or whatever your preferred term is) until the end of the month. Now the really important thing here is to NOT book yourself up the second your get back from the Bender (as I am affectionately calling it ) ……because then the bender isn’t really over, and truly you need to stop at some point. A good triage nurse will know if its really important eg that amazing meeting with that really fabulous contact you’ve been chasing and then a few other things might need to shuffle. Having said that timing really is everything and sometimes actually, quite often people will be prepared for you not to be available at the drop of a hat and it truly helps to cultivate this in your personal and business relationships. Next week I talk about how you recuperate from your little bender burn out. xx
The only reason for time is so everything doesn’t happen at once – Albert Einstein
What if there wasn’t this pressing gushing racing push of time?
What if I truly believed that there was enough time to get what needed to be done, done?
What if just for a second I didn’t believe the story that I am solely responsible for ensuring the spinning of the planet?
What if in the face of overwhelming biochemical compulsion to run and flee I sloooowwwed down and met myself coming back the other direction?
What if I used all the distractions as a tool for connection …. you know the ones? What if I went all a bit matrixy and just moved at my own pace and all the people that were looking for me would be able to see me more clearly… cause we’re on the same page me and those people… What then?
Is it the fear of missing out?
A Fear of being left behind or being wrong?
Of not being enough, or not being worthy of love?
How can any of these things be true or real or even possible?
To all you beautiful people reading this I offer you these questions, there is no right or wrong answers. Perhaps just be curious with them and see how you feel in response. x
My love letter to Love
I promise you there will be not more dimming my light.
There will no more excuses of changing of minds at the last moment, you have been so patient.
There will be no more settling, no more ‘oh this will do love’ with a little l
There will be no more pretending and facades and hiding your light.
I will love fiercely.
I will love freely.
I will not pretend not to love to so as not to disturb someones comfort.
I will not throw love like a heavy weight designed to anchor and harm.
I will love not with out fear but with it, hand in hand and shine the light for fear to see.
Love, I will let you be boyant and wild and redemptive
Love I understand now that you don’t wait for the right time or the lighting to be correct,
You are the slow steady base line thrumming keeping time, the whistle saying ‘now’ take the leap, and get on with your beautiful life.
With you love there is the strength to find the way.
Love I choose you, with a big L.
I will listen to my heart intelligence, follow the bread crumbs and read the signs.
I will feel my feelings (and it wont always be pretty but they’re mine)
Then comes the whispers in the middle to the night of my gut, my primal intelligence, The Shakti that knowing that says ‘Yes’
Then and only then this beautiful mind of mine, for the logistics, the ‘how’ the how many hammers will I need to build this house?
Do I want a house built on a big L or a little one?
The big L will not be huffed and puffed down, will not tumble when someone chooses to leave or when that deal falls through.
I choose love darling heart.
With every fibre of my being and my choosing has shown me the truth.
That love has been with me all along.
I chose love with a big L.
Whose with me?!
Its been tough.
Its been amazing .
Life has taken you to your edge more than you ever thought possible, the thoughts dreams hopes and fantasies of your youth got gritty and edgy and dirty and you thought and prayed on more than one occasion “Fuq I hope I get through this.”
Yet on the outside you looked for all the world like a woman coping with amazing adversity with grace poise and determination. The option of collapse just wasn’t on the cards there was too much riding on your success.
And even while people complemented you on your ability to get the job done, at home on your own you doubted your very ability to get up and do it all again the next morning.
You read books on self help Echart Toile and Brené Brown have been your bedtime companions, you bought yourself flowers, walked the dog fed your kids and kept the toilet paper stocked up. And Did. It all. Again. The next day.
You were hungry, you still are hungry, craving a desire for nourishment deep in your bones deep in your very soul that wakes you up every day, eyes on the horizon putting one foot in front of the other.
You gratitude prayer is your mantra, its your daily bread and butter whilst you put together that proposal and dream up the next step of your evolution.
Its been tough but the light is getting brighter, YOUR light is getting brighter.But hell it would be great to not have to do it all on your own.
A tribe, A team that has been there too. Has been there in the dark as you watched all that you knew and love vanish and yet you still drew breath.
You danced you swam, you made some very questionable decisions, repeatedly!
You learnt you experience you picked yourself up and fell down another rabbit hole!
Your not happy with the status quo, the mundane you can deal with but settling isn’t part of your vocabulary. Its not that you want lots of attention and ego stroking, just to give yourself the permission to fucking BE all that you are, permission to speak your truth and live your dharma, the role, the story, the magic that only you dear woman can sing into this world. I hear you!
The peak of your youth is just behind you, but you have never felt more at home in your body, more quietly confident, the fire in you is rising, the magic, the sex the power that is yours and only yours is simmering almost ready, you feel it yes?
I’m calling out to you women, high and low, good god I’d love to meet you how I’d love to have you on my team and share my story with you.
To sit around this virtual fireside and support each other and journey together that is my wish, is my heartfelt spiritual directive.
In ancient times we had a place, a collective and a space to weave and share and dream and birth our stories in this world. To laugh and be deliciously wicked and wild. Dear one this is such a space. Come sit and play and laugh and heal.
Healing that will set your world on fire.
From the archives is the post all about the Po. The alchemical spirit of the lungs and how we can incorporate this ancient wisdom of the most primal aspect of ourselves into our modern worlds .
I have all these incredibly intellectual ideas and theories to share on the soma; the physical body, and its responses and how the Po is an expression of the innate wisdom of our cellular bodies. And I”m sure I’ll get to that at some point… there is an endless amount of information I can share from this elemental point of view.
What I am really feeling tonight when I think about the Po is the gentrification of the body and the senses and how thats effecting our health and our relationship with our bodies wellness. Oh is that all… the ‘gentrification’ of the body!!
The Po is experienced through our senses, taste, texture, scent, sight. Its the automatic functions of our bodies like breathing and peristalsis (digestion). Its experienced in that space between our skin (our awareness of where we start and stop) and the outside world. Its the animalistic aspects of our functioning bodies and our psyche.
Its all the bits we have no control over yet constantly inform our likes dislikes and urges.
And as highly functioning modern upright people, we have a few issues with these urges and tastes don’t we? ( This is where the gentrification bit come in ) Our minds and intellect, and our hearts and dreams would have us operating from an almost utopian platform. We have been culturally disciplined to detach and suppress the so called less attractive aspects of our bodies and minds. There is much that still today we wouldn’t dare discuss ‘in public’ . And yet much of these taboo subjects include basic bodily functions that are quite essential to our wellbeing and survival ( think poo and sex ).
So what happens when we suppress the Po and ignore the innate wisdom of our bodies and trust that connection between the body and the mind? Pain and ‘psychosomatic’ symptoms ranging from stress-related skin disorders, eating disorders and chronic undiagnosable pain.
Our bodies only ‘language’ is our nervous system and its through this system that it will try and get its messages across to us. They sound something like this.
“Hey, you up there! ” (patient pause for response) “Hey! We don’t think you should be eating that… (another patient pause) HEY!!!! (huddle together for a brain storm) I know, we’ll create some pain, that’ll do it. (patient pause) Damn it they just took a pain killer….. hmmmm Ok Ok I’ve got it, some red skin that always gets them ok GO!
Ok so this isn’t exactly scientific but you get my point. The bodies wisdom; the innate cellular wisdom, that gut feeling, intuition, or a ‘sense of knowing’, does actually need to be heard occasionally! Or, quite simply there are consequences. Now this doesn’t mean that we have to go all primal and throw out all the other functions. The other spirits have their place.
Ideally they work together. Depending on our own make up and our cultural learnings some are going to be more easily integrated than others. Myself, I live in this visceral world of experiencing life through the Po. I probably give this spirit way too much free rein! What does that look like?
Senses, texture and environment are paramount to the Metal element. There are always scented candles burning and fresh flowers and my house has always been full of animals (lets not mention the bats here ok). I work physically with peoples bodies. I have a bathroom full of more oil and lotions than any one body is ever going to be able to absorb and I spend almost more time in the ocean than on dry land. In winter this is replaced by the bath tub (Tonights blog is proudly bought to you by Embody Bath Salts). Textured cushions, natural fibres, LOTS of colour, really I could go on and on. If this sounds like you and your saying, well thats every modern woman surely, I’ll tell you sadly this is not so.
This genuine external expression of the Po is matched with an internal nourishment and respect of that animal instinct. The ability to ‘check in’ with our bodies and interpret its metaphorical language. This I believe is becoming quite a rare ability as we seek to cover up, pretty up and medicate the aspects of ourselves that we don’t like, don’t ‘fit’ or are fearful of. To bring that full circle and back to the bodies I spend my day working with, this results in disharmony. Disharmony of mind and body expressing its self in pain and inflammation of increasing severity.
As I read this I realise this really is my primary function with my treatments. To work as an interpreter for the body and to translate the pain and inflammation that my clients are experiencing so they might heal themselves. What can you do to nourish your Po? Well, any of the above is great, experiencing your senses, in what ever way is fun for you. (You don’t have to turn it into the extreme sport as I tend to do)
One of the easiest ways is to simply ‘check in’ with you body. When I think this or eat this how do I feel? more or less calm? more or less tight in my shoulders? BREATHE! yep just slowly calmly breathe. You’ll be surprised to find just how often your holding your breathe.
To finish off, here is a quote from one of my favourite books “Five Spirits” that so beautifully articulates the place I wish to take my practice.
By Lorie Eve Dechar. Lantern Books 2006
“When the acupuncture needle penetrates the surface of the skin, there is a moment of silence, an emptiness, a wondering and not knowing. When the metal needle meets the living body, there is a silence, a pause …before the tiny whirlwind spins and the qi redirects its course. For thousands of years, the intentions of healers and patients have met in that single breathless emptiness, that turning point of the soul that is the moment of transformation.
Perhaps, as we open to another form of consciousness, the present silence of our world will become that empty turning point, that breathless moment of change. Perhaps, if one by one we humans reclaim our vision of a living cosmos imbued with intention and intelligence and illuminated by wisdom, we will become like ten thousand silver needles penetrating and healing the body of the earth. Then perhaps , through healing our planet, we will heal ourselves and hear again the songs that the stones of the earth are singing to the clouds of heaven .”
So. This weekend is Valentines Day. And you know what, I am really quite over having my otherwise gorgeous relaxing weekend taken over by some absolutely bullshit holiday or another! Yup I’m not even sugar coating this rant, its straight into it!
You see, as I found myself today launching headlong into another grinch style moment over the upcoming Hallmark occasion, I realised, a little self consciously, that I go on like this a bit lately. As my mind tracked back over Australia Day, New Years Day, Christmas and please-don’t-even-get-me-started-on-things-like-Hens-Parties I saw a real trend happening here.
No, not that I’m a woman of a certain age that is single and gotten her Victoria Secrets in a twist.
That’s not it at all.
Its that I actually dearly love and cherish ritual in my life REAL ritual. Ritual that marks occasions with authenticity and thoughtfulness mindfulness and meaning and yes fun too! I have gotten to a point in my life that I’m finding it harder and harder to play along with occasions that I find honestly, quite distasteful and disrespectful to all involved.
Now I know, a bunch of you are reading this thinking yeah but I bet if she had a delish man in her life showering her with attention this weekend she’d change her tune. Well peeps unless someone gets their act into gear quick smart between now and Sat your going to have to wait a while to see what that metaphorical pudding looks like… um in about a years time. What I can say is that in the beautiful romantic relationships in my past I have enjoyed sharing created rituals. How do you do that I hear you say? Read on gorgeous ones read on!
Lets start with New Years as its the most recent. I usually categorically avoid New Years, I’m not sure why, I think it just feels like there is so much pressure for it to be this evening of epic proportions. I have two caveats here and that involves Sydney Harbour fire works and the New York Times Square dropping of the ball, other than that I’m in bed in time to get up and watch the sunrise.
This year things didn’t go to my control freaky plans but I did enjoy this beautiful new year sunrise and the next night which was the first new moon of the year I created a new year ritual.
For this ritual you will need.
Something to safely burn small pieces of paper in. A pot out in the open or safely in the laundry sink is always a good idea.
Of course I have a cauldron! Then add all your favourite things like candles, tea or your favourite yummy beverage, and a list.
On that list you are writing down all the things you have to thank the previous year for. The gifts and learnings, the fun stuff that you want more of and the tricky stuff that you struggled through and learnt from and are ready to let go. You can write it down like your talking to someone or just list all the words thoughts and pictures down any ol’ how on a piece of paper.
For my New Year Ritual I was home alone, I had my yummy tea, I was working through some new years plans and lists, I had candles burning and beautiful music playing.
The trick with any ritual isn’t that these things actually have magical powers on their own, you see its all about your intention. For me these things set the mood, create the feeling of sacred space and open me up to the possibilities and dreams that are hiding away in my subconscious. If all you have time for is a five minute out loud wish list and blowing out a candle whilst you hide in the bathroom from your 4 year old playing hide and seek. I totally believe that works too!
The wonderful thing about this kind of ritual is that it works for lots of occasions. I did it to mark the new calendar year on the new moon. You could easily do it as friends of mine did for the Chinese New Year. Anniversaries and Birthdays are another beautiful time to re-asses and let go of the old and invite in the new!
So once you have that list all written out its time to set it on fire!
Now seriously, do I have to remind you to put the kids and the cats and curtains and the expensive silk highly flammable things away… far far away? I do? Ok go sort that stuff out then come back.
Now you set it on fire in the cauldron (big pot) and visualise your dreams and burdens streaming away into the ether to be filed in the appropriate cosmic filing cabinet as it goes up in smoke. Easy Peasy!
So whilst your working out how to apply this to our own lives, here are 5 sure fire ways to feel loved up and romanced with or without a romantic partner, this weekend or any other. Of course I have assigned them according to the elements.
Metal – Give the gift of an occasion to yourself. Carve out time to read that book or watch your favourite film. Enjoy some time in nature or visit your local art gallery.
Fire – Use Candles or scents to create a sensory experience in your home. Light candles for yourself and make an occasion of your evening meal. (ahem and yes put your phone away!)
Water- Run a bath to nurture yourself
Earth – Create a beautiful meal full of greens and beautiful flavours to nourish your senses.
Wood – Get sweaty and expressive and turn your fave tunes up nice and loud and dance like no-one is watching!!
In the last few weeks there have been quite a few beautiful opportunities to create and enjoy ritual in my world I believe its something I will do more of Here is the link to the gorgeous MelJanePhotography’s Blog. She was the photography for our friend Jodies’ pre wedding ritual. Jodie aptly titled it ‘Secret Womens Business’ I had been calling it ‘its not a hens party’ You’ll see my cauldron in full swing in her photo above. It was truly such a beautiful night. It was a complete honour to help organise and I really didn’t realise until it was all happening just how special an event it was going to turn out to be. We all left feeling full up and nourished in a way that only happens when women get together and celebrate and love each other.
That is my kind of Valentines Day!
Oh and the Unicorn in Boyfriend Town? Well I also used the above ritual to invite a new man into my life….. I’ll let you know how that gets on as news comes to hand!
Over the Christmas period last year the retreat where I practice was closed down for two whole weeks and for the first time in years I planned to do absolutely nothing with it! In fact I planned what turned out to be the best holiday EVER; my very first Staycation! (And road test all those tips I give out as a health and life coach)
Here’s the five things you need to know to have your very own homestay holiday in paradise!
1. Set up an auto responder for your email. Nope your not even going to think about answering all that mail, your giving your brain a rest!
2. Do the biggest grocery shop EVER. Have 3 of everything in the pantry ready to go should you feel like cooking up a gourmet storm or inviting your besties over for something spesh… you don’t grocery shop on holiday do you. No.
So why should you on Staycation?
I’m even thinking having delicious nourishing food ordered in.
Imagine relaxing all day then opening the fridge to these beautiful dinners!
Staycation meets at home health retreat Hells YES!
3. Go Viral with your use of the word staycation. This way everyone knows that your actually on holiday and leaves you the hell alone. (if this is infact what you want, I’m a card carrying introvert here!)
People wouldn’t ask you to babysit whilst your on holiday in Bali.. no of course not and not while your on staycation either thank you very much!
4. Get a plan. You can change it easily but this maps out the key things you want to include and means that you wont get caught up with hmmmm maybe I’ll just quickly clean the blinds today. No sorry blinds I have a date with the art gallery. Done!
5. Having a staycation on your own? Well this doesn’t mean that you rule out romance. Romance yourself gorgeous! Candle lit dinners. Dress up for breakfast. Spend the whole day in bed. Watch the sun set on the beach.
Let me know how you get on with you own Staycation!