A Prosperous and Abundant Future Await Those Willing to Breathe Deep 

Take a Closer Look At Your Nervous System and Get Ready For Change

The new year is right around the corner, and just like that, another year of your life has passed. If you are ready to make big leaps in 2023, better review the highs and lows of this past year. How you handled stress and build bridges towards your goals can tell you a lot about where your work is to create a better future. 

A more prosperous and abundant future awaits those who are ready to ask and reflect on questions designed to both challenge you and move your forward with intention. 

If that sounds like you then let’s get to it. 

  • How did you feel emotionally this past year?
  • How was the quality of your thinking? 
  • Were you able to stay focused on what you wanted to see? Or did you spend too much time in anger and regret?
  • What was your relationship with money?
  • Did you see the growth you were hoping for in your personal and professional life?
  • Did you practice self-care? Or were you continually burnt out?

As you reflect on these questions, take note of how they feel in your body. Are any other lingering truths or excuses popping into your thoughts?

Now raise your hand if you’ve felt awkward or uncomfortable asking for your needs to be met over the last year.

My hand is high in the sky! This past year has continued to challenge me at every turn. Every time I made a leap in the right direction I was tested. As though the universe just wanted to make sure I really wanted something to go a certain way. 

These challenges reminded me that change IS challenging! But if you want to keep moving forward and achieve big goals, then you must get ready to be uncomfortable. 

Getting Uncomfortable

If you’re feeling uncomfortable with big and challenging changes in your life, you are not alone. If you feel like your mind is constantly rationalizing you out of your desires, this is normal. 

Getting uncomfortable is a sign that you are pushing through a comfort area. This is good! It means you are ready for growth and opportunity. 

If the questions in your head sound like any of these…

  • They’ll think I’m a fraud
  • I can’t afford to invest in my business
  • I’m asking for too much
  • Do I really need a coach or counselor for my healing?

And if they are coupled with these sensations in your body…

  • Lump in your throat
  • Knot in your stomach
  • Tightness in your chest
  • Shallow breathing

That means you are being pushed to your edge. Your growth edge. This is where…

  • Fear of rejection is met and challenged
  • Guilt from past events are exposed and released
  • Shame you keep hidden is brought to the light and dissolved

These are not feelings any of us wish to have. But it is on the other side of any discomfort that you will see and benefit from growth. 

Listen to Your Body

Your body is constantly giving you signals. Learning to listen to those signals is a great place to start your growth journey. If you’re ready to make the most of this upcoming year, then pay attention to the stories you’ve been telling yourself. You know, the ones that are holding you hostage in a life you don’t even like. 

Your body can tell you if what you are doing at any moment is helping or hurting you. The stories in your head are sending signals to your body that are either working towards building a healthy and beautiful life or keeping you stuck in an old one. 

The real question here is… What is your worth? And are your thoughts worthy of you?

Your Head and Your Nervous System

The stories you tell yourself day after day about what is happening in your life and what is and is not possible don’t actually live in your head. They live in your nervous system. 

Deep within your nervous system is the root of all your stories, and in order to change, you must identify these stories and pull them out from the root. 

Your nervous system houses your emotions and your energy, and it adjusts itself to protect you always. If your stories are constantly fear and lack-driven then your nervous system is reflecting that. This is why your nervous system is a great place to start. 

You can ease your body, and mind by calming your nervous system. 

This doesn’t mean problems will dissolve. But it can mean that how you react to problems will dissolve. Helping you move faster in the direction of the life more worthy of you. 

Let’s imagine what is possible for this upcoming year…

  • Feeling excited to move forward in your business
  • Ready to create more wealth and abundance
  • Spending more quality time with family and friends
  • Getting your finances in order
  • Practicing more self-compassion and health

All of this is available for you now! When you heal the root of your nervous system stories and embody your worth. 

Now is the time to stop running in circles and move into the new year with ease. 

Breathwork is the Ticket!

The simplest way to heal past stories and move into a more abundant and clear future is through breathwork. 

Breathwork helps you attract and manifest your true desires. Taking the time to slow down and consciously breathe energy and life into your body, you begin to realize where you’ve been stuck. Creating an embodied relationship with yourself is vital for transformation. Breathwork can help unlock these blocks, identify the roots of negative stories, and guide you in visualizing a future worthy of you. A total transformation from the inside out. 

Make this year the most abundant yet!

Give breathwork a try and see how it can calm your nervous system in under 5 minutes. Opening you up to see the world and your place in it through a new lens. More clear, more focused, and ready to break through old limiting beliefs. 

Below is a simple 4×4 breathing technique to get you started. 

You are also invited to watch any of my breathing videos on my youtube channel or purchase Breath Mindset, a self-led 4-week online breathing course designed to help move your mindset and breath into coherence. 

4×4 Breathing

  • Be mindful of your posture. Move your back away from any support and plant your feet firmly on the ground.
  • Begin by inhaling through your nose to the count of four. Let the breath come from your belly.
  • Take a slight pause at the top and feel the air move through your body.
  • Exhale fully through the nose to the count of four. Consciously let go of thoughts and toxins that no longer serve you.
  • Take a slight pause at the bottom and feel the stillness in your body
  • Repeat for five cycles.

3 Mindful ways to invite more peace into your busy holiday season

Skip the Stress and Bring More Presence Into Your Life

For so many the holidays are more draining than energizing. By the time January comes around, we are exhausted instead of ready to concur a new year. Why is this? How can you put a little more “merry and bright” into your season as you bounce from place to place creating holiday cheer?

At every turn you are being bombarded with…

  • Holiday movies and commercials
  • Work requests
  • Family obligations
  • Tradition upkeep
  • Decorating and meal planning
  • Shopping for the perfect gift

Unrealistic expectations of what the holidays should be surround us. I cannot think of a single human I know in my 40 years who’s ever received a car with a huge bow on it for Christmas, yet I see the ads year after year that would indicate that this is actually a thing.

One trip down Pinterest lane and I feel completely unqualified to decorate my home. Picture after picture is gorgeous, and every title exclaims easy and quick tips. Translating these images into my messy life can feel exhausting.

Choose Mindfulness instead

What if you decided to skip the stress this year and approached it from a place of mindfulness? 

  • Being more mindful in your conversations, 
  • Being more mindful about your spending, decorating, and gift giving
  • Being more mindful about your time, energy, and values

How much more rejuvenated would you feel if you felt fully present with those you loved?

I know what you’re thinking… Easier said than done, right?

Adopting a “go-with-the-flow” attitude takes work and time, but the payoff is worth it.

  • It helps you observe your perfect imperfections. 
  • It helps you see where your mind is about things. 
  • It helps you better understand the resistance and pull towards certain activities. 
  • It helps you to stop judging holiday experiences and how others approach them with more tolerance, understanding, and acceptance.

Mindfulness is essential for your mental health. And during the holidays we could all use a dose of that. 

Connecting to more peace in your inner world will help us see and connect to more peace and joy in your outer world. 

The key is to identify mindfulness activities that work for you that you can easily refer to when you feel overwhelmed with obligations. Here are 3 Mindful ways to invite more peace into your busy holiday season.

#1 Breathwork

The best antidote I have for overwhelm, anxiety, worry, and exhaustion is breathwork. Simple breathing practices calm my nervous system when my emotions are running high.

Your mind and your breath are like two peas in a pod: whatever one does the other will follow. When you are stressed and anxious your mind starts spinning and your breath becomes shallow and fast. Taking 3-5 rounds of mindful deep, long breaths will help you feel more centered and calm. And you can do this almost anywhere and at any time. It takes less than 5 minutes and you’ll instantly notice the difference.

Here are 3 breathing practices that can regulate your nervous system and help build resilience against stress during the holiday season.

#2 Focus on what feels right 

Every holiday I am so grateful that baking cookies is not a beloved past-time in my family. Don’t get me wrong, I think it sounds lovely, and I sure enjoy being on the receiving end, but I see the stress it creates. With a bazillion things going on it’s hard to find the time for everything, especially when it comes to activities you are doing out of obligation instead of joy.

From the pressure of holiday parties to the perfect gift, maybe it’s time to slow down and ask yourself…

  • Does this really matter to me? 
  • Who am I doing this for? And is that really important or necessary?
  • Do I have the energy to put into this?

Focus on what energizes you instead of drains you. This is how you can avoid holiday burnout. It helps you to show up and be present in a more mindful manner instead of being filled with resentment. 

#3 Unplug

The busier you are the more important this one becomes. It’s challenging in our busy lives to unplug and spend some needed time with yourself. No distractions. 

This means turning off your phone, no radio, no social media, no beeping, no buzzing, no kids, no friends, nothing! Just you.

Get away from the news and go for a walk, or take a bath. Learn to befriend yourself. Treat yourself like the more important person in your life and selfishly spend an hour nourishing that relationship.

Doing this for an hour will help you be more present with others. As the saying goes, you cannot fill from an empty saucer. 

Peace and Calm

These are just 3 examples of ways to build your resilience against holiday stress. There are a ton of options out there and the best ones are the ones that work for you. Find things that help you come back to calm amongst the chaos. For you it might be a trip to the yoga studio, shopping alone, or getting a drink with an old friend. Find your things and make time for them. Treat them as vital because they are, and your mental health is worth it. 

Gain Better Control Over Emotions By Practicing Being Responsive, Rather than Reactive

Moving From a Reactive to a Responsive Mind

Do you ever find yourself getting upset about something completely out of your control?

Do you find yourself ruminating on a small inconvenience and making a situation bigger in your head than it actually is? 

Do you ever catch yourself jumping from one ego-driven thought to the next only to find yourself angry and upset over nothing?

Last week this quote came up in an email I subscribe to…

“Between stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

This resonated with me for a couple of reasons.

  1. Because this principle is at the core of breathwork
  2. Because this is what is practiced by doing ice baths and cold exposure
  3. Because I often catch myself reacting instead of responding

Even with a solid breathwork practice and work with cold exposure, I still find myself having to actively work on this vital statement. 

Over the past week, I have found myself building up an unnecessary story about a situation at work that is nothing more than a minor inconvenience. In the long run, this situation works in my favor in many ways. 

I started a new job less than two weeks ago. One of the things I had mentioned I was anxious about was what to wear because I’ve never had a job where business casual was the attire, and my wardrobe consisted solely of jeans, leggings, and t-shirts. They offered great suggestions to get me going and I went shopping for new work clothes. It was fun! I actually feel a little fancy, and for this low-maintenance babe, it has been quite a treat!

Well, two days ago it was announced that we would be transitioning from our business casual attire to uniform. 

Umm…. What? 

You mean a week after I went out and spent a bunch of time and money updating my wardrobe? Now you tell me I can wear my jeans to work? The very thing I expressed anxiety over last week? 

You couldn’t mention the switchover coming 7 days later? You couldn’t suggest I start with one new pair of pants because change was on the way?

Clearly, I am agitated by the change. But here’s the thing. I actually don’t mind uniforms at all. The idea of not having to think about my clothes is awesome! And I can wear my jeans, so that rules. Bonus and bonus! 

You can feel my frustration in this example; spending time purchasing new clothes that I now have little to no use for and I’ve worn just about all of them once in the last week and a half. Tags are off and it’s a mild inconvenience. When they told us at the all-staff meeting I took it personally. I began to ruminate on how terrible this company was being managed and how poor communication is. 

I realized whoa!

Is this really how I’m going to respond?

And then this quote came through in my email to hit me in the face and remind me of why I do the work that I do. 

I don’t want to react. I don’t feel good getting wrapped into a frenzy over something out of my control–something that I am actually happy about.

Does that sound familiar to you?

Have you ever gotten upset because you weren’t invited to an event you didn’t want to go to?

Do you ever find yourself filling empty space with an argument over nothing in your head? Having imaginary conversations about what you would say to your boss, family member or friend who you are making out to be the bad guy. 

Maybe you’re guilty of complaining about something as silly as the weather. (As though the weather has anything to do with you at all.)

What if instead you learned to accept the flow of life and matched your thinking patterns to a more pliable nature? 

Instead of, It always rains on my day off, you thought, Oh good, we needed this rain.

Viewing your life and surroundings through this lens can have a profound effect on your life.

Moving from Reacting to Responding

This sounds simple, but it’s not always easy. Working on adopting new and healthier ways of thinking sounds simple, but the key is to catch yourself in the moment and make the decision to move from reacting to responding.

Right now, as you read this it seems simple enough, but you’ll find it becomes much harder in the moment. 

Why?

Because your emotions are involved. 

When your thoughts have been triggered into a story about what’s happening in the world around you, you feel it emotionally. You are used to reacting from the ego and your mind becomes busy plotting revenge or feeling sorry for yourself. These triggering emotions are highly addictive AND it’s how you’ve allowed your mind to react for so long that it feels normal and natural. 

Choosing to jump off of a highly charged emotional ego-based story is tough! Your mind will acknowledge that you are creating a fabricated story, but it won’t want to stop. It feels too good. Even if it feels awful, it’s giving you a huge dopamine drip of feelings that validate your ego. 

With practice, you can train your brain to stop the story before it spirals. You can use breathing practices to calm your thoughts and bring you into the present moment. Then you can look at what’s happening in your life and respond from a clear mind. You choose how you want to show up in this moment. 

It does take work at first. After a while, it will become easier and this right thinking will begin to bleed into other areas of your life and more and more positive change will appear all around you. 

Mastering Your Life

In order to become a master of your life you must learn this one skill…

You must be willing to move from a reactive mindset and start showing up in a more responsive way. 

Stop fueling your energy towards stories and events that you can’t change or that have little to nothing to do with you. 

The fastest way to do this is to slow down, connect with your breath, and learn to accept what is.

There is a term used widely in AA meeting that I heard and love; “Acceptance is the key to all things”

Acceptance helps us to surrender to what is and know that it could be no other way. This step alone helps us to respond in more healthy ways. 

The next time you find yourself quickly reacting to new information, jump as fast as you can out of the story you are creating, and start to bring yourself into acceptance with slow mindful breaths deep into your belly. Then from a more focused mind, you can respond accordingly. 

Looking for assistance as you start this process? Join Breath Mindset! This 4-week, self-led course will set you up with all the tools for success!