Walking Toward the Light!

Moving Energy from Fear to Love

Fear is hardwired into modern society. From the time we are walking, we have been told no roughly 400 times a day! This alone sets our brain up to live in a way of fear. Most of us don’t even know that there is another way to live. 

You can choose to live your life from a place of love and you don’t need to wait for a disaster to hit to do it. Health scares are among the top reasons people chose to live differently, but you don’t need to wait for a health crisis to revolutionize your life. 

Take control of your life before tragedy hits 

Wake up and stop walking the path of fear. If you are staying in a job or hanging on to a relationship out of fear I am pleading with you to stop. 

I understand why you’re doing it, but we all know where these roads lead.

What lights you up? Not what you think should light you up. Many of us choose a career or a partner because of fear, and we are never taught anything different.

I was at the park last week and a little girl was showing her mom a stick arrangement she had made in the mud. Her mom was taking a picture of her daughter next to it when the little girl proclaimed with a twirl, “I’m going to be an artist!”

The mom, without hesitation, responded, “Not unless you’re married to a doctor honey. You don’t want to be poor do you?”

Even as I write this I’m getting teary-eyed. What if the next Picasso just got buried in that mud. A part of my heart did. A part of all of us does. 

  • When you were first called ugly your thoughts on comparison started. 
  • When you were first told you were fat, body dysmorphia began. 
  • When you were first called dumb, you began to question your self-worth.

Even the mom, who wants the best for her little girl, is placing her fears onto her daughter. 

But there is another way! 

The fear you feel about being alone, or unloved, or not enough can be transformed into something beautiful by choosing to walk the path of love. 

  • You don’t have to push your body too hard at the gym to punish yourself for eating unhealthy the day before.
  • You don’t have to stay in that toxic relationship because it’s going to be hard to leave and risk being alone.
  • You don’t have to put up with an unhealthy work environment because the money is good.
  • You don’t have to sacrifice your happiness out of fear. 

All of the things you’re currently doing out of fear can go away when you decide to change the energy around them. When you decide to transform your mind to a new philosophy and move from fear to love, the energy you carry around things will change.

It starts with awareness.

Once you are aware of your fear-based thoughts the energy around them begins to change. Once acknowledged, it is no longer hidden away in the dark. Light brings a different energy and sometimes becoming aware is the transformation. 

Other times, it takes more work. 

Awareness is the first key. But the thing with awareness is that once you are aware of a problem you must make the choice to do something about it. This is where so many people give up. Choosing to take ownership of our lives is challenging. It’s easy to live a small miserable life. Just look around, we all do it in some ways and we reflect it in each other. 

We tell each other stories like…

  • Relationships are hard
  • I don’t get along with women/men
  • At least I have a job
  • I earned this cheesecake

Only you can hold yourself accountable. 

As Seth Godin likes to say, “Putting yourself on the hook.”

Part of changing your energy around fear is choosing something different than the day before. This is where things get sticky. 

It’s time to own your role in your current circumstance and choose a different path. This might look like switching your internal dialog to…

  • I choose to eat healthy because I love my body.
  • I choose to accept my family for who they are because I love them and trust them to walk their own path towards love.
  • I choose to get up early and meditate because it clears my head for a busy day.
  • I choose to wait for Mr. Right instead of settling for the wrong person. 

Take Back Your Power

No one is going to go to the gym or eat healthy for you. You must choose to walk the path to self-love and begin these healthy rituals on your own. It will take some work, but once you see how good you can feel it will get easier. 

Now that you feel better you start to look back and wonder why you ever let yourself feel so bad. Energy attracts energy, so the road of fear you were walking comes to a crossroads with love and now you can start living in this new path. The way you were meant to live; in love. 

A whole new world will open up to you once you decide that you are worth living in alignment with love. Love is our natural state. Just look at any baby and you can see the trust and love. They don’t question the way they look, or their intelligence, they just live in the energy of love and let their needs be met. 

You can too. 

Sure being an adult takes more than crying to get our needs met, but that’s the joy. Taking responsibility can feel overwhelming but how do you feel now? Is living in fear serving you? Or are you just surviving? What energy are you bringing into your life? And what energy would you like to attract? 

You have the power in you to make that shift now! And it begins with awareness. Meet me on the path to love. There are others here, like us, encouraging and helpful and unlearning their fear-based mindset so we can light up the world together. 

Finding Joy in the Mundane

Everyday Solutions to Create a More Joyful Life

Finding joy is something we all want more of in our lives. From day to day it’s easy to find ourselves falling into a routine that no longer excites us. Driving the same route to work day after day gets boring and mundane. We forget to observe the beautiful arching birch trees that line our path or even notice the mountain range that peeks out on a nice sunny day. By taking time to notice these simple pleasures you have the power to turn the mundane into the extraordinary. 

Here are 5 ways you can use your ordinary routine to find joy.

  1. Stop Waiting to be Happy

Sometimes it seems as though we are waiting for something to be happy about. We forget that every moment is an opportunity to be happy. 

Negative thoughts breed more negative thoughts, so we begin to replace joy with anger. 

We all know that person who can be in a room full of laughter and be pissed off in the corner. You might even try to include this person and they just attempt to bring you down with their negative take on the situation. They have decided that they need a reason to be happy. How can they possibly be happy when…

  • They have back pain
  • Their marriage fell apart
  • They have cancer
  • They lost their job

Whatever negative thoughts they focus on quite literally steal their happiness; they’re unaware of all the joy that surrounds them.

We’ve all been guilty of this on some level. We’ve let our ego keep us focused on what we don’t have. But the reality is that you can begin to feel happier, more productive, and successful right now just by focusing on what you do have. Your thinking changes your perspective which is awesome! It means you can start creating joy in your life right now just by deciding to.

  1. Appreciate the Little Things

My honey-bunny cooks dinner for me almost every night. It’s not something that has ever been discussed or talked about. He’s just the family cook. After 13 years together I’ve gotten used to being spoiled and forget how nice it is that I don’t need to think about dinner night after night. He carries that burden for us. I will note that both he and I enjoy his cooking much more than we like mine, but that doesn’t mean his seamless effort should go without thanks. 

Maybe you too are enjoying the efforts of someone lightening your load. Or maybe it’s taking time to appreciate all of the conveniences of modern-day life –Things that are done for us without us even realizing. 

  • Doors slide open for you as you approach
  • Traffic lights keep us running on a smooth schedule
  • Your cell phone carries all the information you could ever need
  • Your refrigerator that keeps your food from spoiling
  • Hot water when you take a shower

Start a list of the little things in your life that deserve appreciation and start thanking people and things for helping support you through this journey.

  1. Take Care of Yourself

I don’t know what it is about self-care that people are so resistant to. The guilt that comes along with a spa day is sometimes more stressful than worth it. The fact of the matter is that when you take care of yourself you have more to give out to those around you. Motivational speaker Lisa Nichols has a quote I love… 

“Your job is to fill your own cup, so it overflows. Then you can serve others, joyfully, from your saucer”

The idea is to fill your own cup first.

If you struggle with self-care I suggest making a list of all the things you have to do and then deciding what on the list is major and what is minor. Then you can clear space in your mind for indulging in an afternoon off instead of spending the whole time thinking about the laundry or cleaning the bathroom. 

  1. Don’t Worry so Much

I know this is a tough one. How can you stop yourself from worrying about all the things? Practice, that’s how. If you’re stuck in traffic and keep looking from the road to the time and with each passing minute you’re worried about how late you will be to work, or dinner, or the kids’ activities, you can’t help but worry. In an era of cell phones, you can let people know you’re running late. 

It really is that simple. 

What tends to happen though is even after you’ve let everyone know what’s happening you are still fixated on getting there on time. 

What if you start training yourself to give over to the moment? 

Calls have been made and you will arrive when you arrive. Imagine yourself showing up calm and ready instead of late and frazzled. If you start to train yourself to worry less you will find yourself worrying less. Then when you’re running late you can know this is not a personal reflection on who you are as a person, but a circumstance you are in. 

  1. Practice Breathwork!

A daily practice of functional breathing is simple…not easy. Taking 5 minutes to sit yourself down and focus on nothing but your breath helps pull your mind out of the body. This offers you a break from the daily lists and scenarios that swirl around in your head. For 5 minutes you have the opportunity to just feel your body expand and contract. 

In five minutes you can turn your whole day around. By rebalancing your nervous system you are able to remain calm and in the flow of life even when things get hectic. And when you are coming from a calm place it’s easier to notice the joy that surrounds you. It also helps you build a better relationship with your body and intuition. 

When life feels mundane, learn to look for joy. True happiness lies here in our everyday experiences. 

I’m not suggesting that every moment needs to be happy and joyful, but I am saying that joy surrounds you at any given moment. 

Even when life feels like a pressure cooker there are lessons to be learned and reasons to find joy. It’s all a matter of how we choose to view the situation. 

I hope this list offers you an opening to joy the next time you find yourself stuck in the endless mundane of your everyday life. 

Breaking the Habit of Hesitation

Release the Idea of Needing Motivation, and Start Taking Action Today!

Many aspiring entrepreneurs constantly live in a state of limbo. They have great ideas, but they’re not quite sure if they should pursue them or not because it could be too risky. The thought of taking the leap into something new is paralyzing to some people– and for good reason! It can be an intimidating task, which is why I’m here to tell you that there’s no need to hesitate anymore. 

You don’t have to keep waiting around for someone else to invest in your idea; just take action and start making things happen. If you’re uncomfortable then you are on the right track. If this sounds like you then this blog post is perfect because it’s time we break the habit of hesitation once and for all.

It’s easy to look at someone you admire who has success and start to believe that they possess something you don’t. That success came easy to them or that they are full of motivation. You’ve bought into this idea that at some point you too will have the courage and confidence to pursue your dreams. 

You know how it goes… 

  • Once I have more money I will do it.
  • Once I lose weight I will start.
  • Once the kids are out of the house I can focus on myself.
  • Once I get that promotion things will change.

These hesitations are keeping you stuck. I know because I’ve been there too, and I know that someday will never come unless you decide to make it happen. 

Right now.

Where you are.

With what you have.

Begin Today!

I have a lifelong friend who is such an inspiration. She’s a single mom who started her custom clothing line while living in a 500 square-foot studio apartment. She’d always wanted to go for it, but the time was never right. Stuck at home with an infant and in a place of needing to figure it out, she went all in. 

Today she has a successful clothing line making custom clothes exclusively for the wives, girlfriends, parents, and children of professional athletes. A niche industry that caters to helping family members stand out in the stadium on game day. 

She created a market out of need and found success when she let hesitation go. 

She was not confident when she was setting up her printer between the baby’s crib and the small kitchen surface she had. But she decided to go for it and it completely changed her life. 

Hesitation Brings Doubt

Somewhere along the line, we decided it was more comfortable to stay stuck dreaming about our future lives than actually taking the steps to create that dream life. We started relying on the voice of hesitation. Our brains are designed to protect us from danger and anything unknown is a potential threat. Hesitation is our reasoning mind thinking it’s keeping us safe. But in order to start that business, be that partner, follow that dream, you are going to have to spend a little time in uncertainty.

Mel Robbin’s book, “The 5 Second Rule”, talks about this. She says it’s responsible for changing the course of her life. She says “If you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it.” She suggests when you have an idea you give yourself 5 seconds to act on it. Literally doing a 5-4-3-2-1 countdown to propel you into action. 

When you think about all the things you’re going to do tomorrow it’s easy. Your mind is motivated to say…

  • I’m going to get up early and meditate tomorrow
  • I’m going to start eating healthily tomorrow
  • I’m starting my gym routine tomorrow
  • I’m starting to put pen to paper on my book tomorrow

And you really mean it! You’re seriously ready. But then the next day you just aren’t motivated to do it. You’ve already hesitated on the idea, what’s one more day? You can always start tomorrow. And it’s true, you can always start tomorrow, but if you’re waiting for motivation or courage, or confidence to get started then you will never begin.

As amazing as your ideas are, nothing happens if you don’t get yourself up and moving. 

You’re never going to feel like doing the scary stuff–the stuff that requires learning new skills that intimidate you like taking control of your finances or learning the dynamics of solid SEO skills. You will always only feel motivated to do the things that are easy and that feel good. But I’m sorry to tell you that is not the way to success. 

Successful people show up and do the work even when they aren’t motivated or sure what will happen. They understand that it’s more important to be consistent than to be motivated or confident. They just keep on keepin on.

Breathwork for Hesitation

When you feel a strong urge to move on something and hesitate, your brain starts to rationalize all the reasons why you are right for hesitating. You can train yourself to act by utilizing Mel Robbins 5 Second rule, or you can turn to your breath. 

Whenever I have a big decision to make I sit down on my mat and breathe. I ask for clarity and do alternate nostril breathing, balancing out the two hemispheres of my brain so I can get in tune with my inner knowing. Using that knowledge–that gut feeling that my heart is leading me to do–I can easily begin down a road without hesitation. Now having a foundation of trust within my heart. 

Intuitively I always know which way I want to go, but when I hesitate doubt will have me sitting in limbo for far too long. Alternate nostril breathing has helped push that mind-chatter out, leaving me clear and concise on the direction I need to go. 

Alternate Nostril Breathing

  • Find a comfortable seat on a meditation pillow.
  • Be sure you are sitting with a nice straight spine, shoulders rolled back and down, with your chin slightly tucked. 
  • Close your eyes and begin to focus on your breath.
  • Ask yourself: Why am I hesitating on this decision?
  • Place your right hand in a pranayama mudra (fancy hand placement) by tucking your first two fingers into the palm of your hand, allowing the ring and pinky to remain as straight as possible. 
  • Bring your right thumb up to plug your right nostril and inhale for 4 seconds starting through the left nostril only. 
  • Use your ring and pinky figures to pinch the left nostril as you hold your breath.
  • Release your thumb from the right side and exhale for 4 seconds. 
  • Stay here and inhale into your right nostril for 4 seconds.
  • Pinch your thumb to your right nostril while holding your breath.
  • Release your ring and pinky fingers and exhale 4 seconds out of your left nostril.
  • You have completed 1 full round. 
  • Repeat these steps for 5-10 more rounds to find balance and clarity.

However you decide to work on your habit of hesitation is fine. We all have different ways of moving into clarity. The reality is that there is more information in this world and choices to be made than you have time for. So decide what is the right path for you and then get out of your way so you can do the work. 

Doubt will always be there, but it doesn’t need to be behind the wheel. Take control of your life by moving into a place of action and see how quickly things begin to change. 

I’d love to hear from you! Let me know how alternate nostril breathing is working for your decision-making or what other tips and tricks you use to help beat the hesitation within you. 

Shifting Your Lens Towards Gratitude

A Month-Long Approach in Focusing on the Positive

It’s natural of us to get wrapped into the messiness of life. The stress of our everyday routine can be overwhelming and often demanding of our attention. November is the national month of gratitude, perfect as we gear up for Thanksgiving and all the chaos of the holidays. A perfect time to reflect on all that the year has given us. Gratitude invites us back to the present moment. An offering of peace that is found in the simple pleasure of the present moment. For it is in the present moment that we are whole. 

Practicing gratitude is an offering to ourselves and a blessing to those around us. It helps us see the world through gentle eyes and with an open heart. Bringing in new perspectives of the churning thoughts that consume our every day and revealing a fresh take on old lingering problems. 

Struggle and Heartbreak

We all go through times of struggle and heartbreak. Yet even in those low moments, we can find something to be grateful for. You must decide to see the good. A practice of deep gratitude doesn’t cancel out what’s challenging in our lives, but it does help us see the good. It’s all about the lens we focus on. 

It’s easy in today’s world to see how divided we’ve become. Almost every issue we hear about on the news is polarized by strong opinions. Us vs. them is the current mindset, and we have become used to a society that pulls others down instead of lifting others up. 

One of the great sages of our time, Fred Rogers, reminds us… 

“Imagine what real neighborhoods would be like if each of us offered, as a matter of course, just one kind word to another person.”

When you offer a kind thought, word, or deed out into the world it lifts us all up. 

  • You are lifted by the practice of doing.
  • Others are lifted in the gift of being seen, hear, felt, loved.

A practice in gratitude raises your energy. Others begin to take note and say…”What are they doing differently? And how can I create that in my own life.”

The Secret to Happiness

Skeptics everywhere like to put simple things like gratitude aside. Turning their focus towards more complex formulas needed towards building a happy life. Some will even argue that taking a pill is the answer to a more balanced fulfilled life. Yet study after study has shown a link between well-being and gratitude. 

It’s important for all of us to remember that the stories and situations in our lives are just that. Stories. We determine the weight to which we give them. More often than not the weight of the world isn’t on our shoulders, but in our minds. 

Gratitude shifts us out of those spirals, and into more balanced practices. Shifting your lens is sometimes all it takes to help you out of an uncomfortable situation. 

Author, Gretchen Rubin proves this in her book, “The Happiness Project”. In it, she takes you with her on a journey through a year into daily practices designed to generate more happiness in her life. What did she find? That as energy shifts, more abundance appeared in her life. Simple things like singing in the morning, a gratitude journal, and being more present in the daily moments turned her into a New York Times Bestselling Author. 

My Gratitude Offering

As I embark on this new journey of bringing my breath coach business online, I decided to jump on the Gratitude bandwagon this November by offering a weekly talk about gratitude. Each Thursday at 7pm I will go live on Facebook. For 20 minutes we will dive into that week’s topic for grace and pair it with a breathing practice linked to a gratitude mantra. 

Join me on Breath Mindset on November 4th, 11th, 18th, and 25th (Yes, on Thanksgiving) at 7pm. Listen, Breathe, ask questions, and raise your energy through the power of gratitude. 

Topics to be discussed

Week 1 – Thank you!

Giving thanks is what gratitude is all about. In the first week of lives, we will have a short chat about the power of saying thank you. You will leave with a list of “easy for you” opportunities to say thank you and we will pair it with a quick breathing exercise in thanks.

Week 2 – Everyday Life

Because so much of our daily routines are done automatically we might be looking over the brilliance of the view from our backyard, or the hot water in our showers. This week we will talk about finding gratitude in our everyday routines and ways to help keep us present in the mundane. 

Week 3 – Laughter

We are busy and with all that running around we forget to enjoy the moments. One of the fastest ways to find yourself immersed in a moment is through laughter. When was the last time you belly laughed? Perhaps you’re taking things too seriously and need to utilize that laughter lens to help you lighten up. Week 3 we will chat tools and tips towards bringing a sense of play into your daily routine.

Week 4 – Family

On Thanksgiving Day we will talk about family. The family you’re with, the family you’ve lost, and the family you could do without. Every family is a mixed bag of comfort and irritation. This week we will breathe through some shifts to make time with family the most enjoyable, even when Aunt Sue and Grandma Ray engage in their yearly holiday blow-out. 

Join the Conversation

Whether you can join me live, or prefer to watch the replays, November is a great time to reflect on all we have to be grateful for. For instance, being able to chat with readers like you from all over the globe. Thank you internet!

You are one Pinterest search away from an endless stream of gratitude challenges. Join in and become an observer in your own experience. Even if it feels silly, engage in a new way of thinking or develop your practice even more. 

Now more than ever a kind word and an open heart are needed. 

Drop me a message and share what you are doing to bring gratitude into your life. 

How You Become Addicted to a Life You Don’t Even Like

You know that friend who is constantly complaining about her partner? Or that coworker who always points out what is wrong with management? Always complaining, but never doing anything about it. Do you ever wonder why they put up with all the hassle? It could be that they have become addicted to their problems. We see it so often: people addicted to a life they don’t even like.

We are constantly living by a set of daily rituals: things we do every day that trigger different emotional responses within us. We have conditioned ourselves into the state of our lives. When you decide to change the way you feel about something it threatens a whole host of responses you’ve been relying on for years. This is challenging and takes work that many of us have decided is too hard. Many would rather stay trapped in a life or situation they don’t even like and that often lead to major health concerns. 

Dr. Joe Dispenza is one of my favorites. In his book, “Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself”, he goes into the science behind our bodies being the subconscious mind. The idea is that all of our thoughts and memories are stored in the body. So the thoughts you think signal the body in different ways, creating emotions and reactions related to those memories. Essentially, those negative thoughts create a negative reality. 

In order to change the life you live you must change your thoughts by breaking down old belief patterns. 

This is tricky. We store memories because they have an effect on us. Sometimes going as far back as childhood trauma. Memories and reactions are stored to help keep us safe. And, sometimes they keep us looped into negative thinking patterns. 

All of us have been through some sort of trauma in our lives. These scars literally change the way our brains work. The good news here is that the brain is pliable. Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to modify its connections to rewire itself. Meaning you can reprogram your thoughts and beliefs into the life of your dreams. Knowing this, why is it that so many would choose to stay stuck in a life they don’t even like?

The Devil You Know

Our identity is at stake when we change. Change means taking responsibility for ourselves. Change is uncomfortable. Our human nature is to mold in with our environment. If complaining has been your way, then who are you without it? And when you are programmed to see the negative how can you evolve into seeing inspiration?

All of this means taking a look at how you’ve played a role in where you currently are in your life. It’s choosing to no longer be a victim to your current circumstances and quit the blame game. 

  • It’s not what your partner is doing to you. 
  • It’s not that your boss hates you. 
  • It’s not the break up that left you high and dry.
  • It’s not your family.
  • It’s not your finances.

It’s deciding to own what you can change instead of continuing to focus on what you don’t want.

Thoughts Become Things

If you are constantly complaining about your life then you start to look for signs in the world that prove your thoughts are right. Your body has a reaction and the emotional triggers are hit. The trick is to start to generate new thoughts in line with where you want your life to go. Just scroll social media and you will find everyone proofing that their beliefs on a subject are correct based on an article or shared post. We look for these confirmations and then get a hit of dopamine when it is reflected. 

Knowing this, wouldn’t it be more beneficial to focus on things you do want to show up in your life? Can you imagine the shifts that would begin to take place if you started acting like you loved your life? What if you spoke only positively about your partner? How would that change your life?

Dr. Joe talks in the book about how our body doesn’t know the difference between a thought you’re having and what’s actually happening. Think about it…Have you ever played out a scenario in your head with so much emotion that you got angry? Or started crying? Your body experiences that as though that event was actually happening. 

If you are constantly playing out a scenario that happened last week, last month, last year, 5-10 years ago, your body doesn’t know that it’s not physically happening. Your body assumes that this mind-induced trauma is happening now and fires off the same wiring that is keeping you stuck, and mad, and frustrated with your current life. 

Remember that the brain is pliable though. It can be molded into observing the changes you wish to see. 

This means that right now you can begin to think yourself into a life you love. 

You just need to start showing up differently in your life. Begin to visualize your life as something you love. Why not love your life? What do you have to lose? 

At first, it will feel forced or fake, and that’s okay. Your body is just not used to these new experiences and thoughts. You might find yourself sliding back into a negative conversation about a coworker because that is the familiar past. But the past is past, and every time you notice this happening and redirect your energy back to the life you love, it’s a win. Soon you will begin to fire new networks in your brain that signal and connect you to a more positive state of being. 

More Than Just Positive Thinking

This is hard work and it takes more than just thinking positively. You must commit to change and refuse to be a victim of your own life. As Dr. Joe likes to say, “Moving from thinking, to doing, to being.” Simply act on your positive thoughts into action in order for your life to become what you want it to be. 

Thinking negatively makes you feel depressed and worthless. Your set of old patterns has you stuck doing activities or hanging out with people who you have outgrown or who are unhealthy. You are caught in your own routine of thoughts and feelings and this perpetuates the same reality you have been complaining about. You must choose different thoughts and then be ready to act on them. 

I know this is super scary. So take it slow. Begin with observing your thoughts. Where does your mind go naturally in any situation? Take note and then reflect on how it feels in your body. Ask yourself if there might be another way to look at it. 

Once you get this down it’s time to align your thoughts with the way you want to feel. Your thoughts and feelings must align in order for this to work. For instance, let’s say you are headed to Thanksgiving dinner and you just know your cousin is going to say something to set you off. You expect it. So naturally when it happens boom! You are triggered and the old patterns move along.

Now imagine you are headed to Thanksgiving dinner and you focus your thoughts on how nice it was to see your cousin. You can visualize the two of you laughing or hugging or connecting in the way you want to connect. Then when they start in on the old pattern you are aware of your trigger and can choose to not react. Perhaps even laughing at the comment. Agreeing “Yes I can be like that sometimes.” What a difference that would make. You cannot change the people around you, but you can change how you choose to react to them. 

Conditioning

Life is full of ups and downs and things are always going to come up that are uncomfortable. If you decide you want to thrive in challenging moments, you have to do the work now so you are prepared. It’s daily choices that create your conditioning. You can decide to not let external realities determine your internal state. 

You can begin to condition the body to support ideas, emotions, feelings, and events that you want to see in your life. At this very moment, you can choose to be grateful despite your chronic back pain. Start associating your thoughts and feelings with the life of your dreams. You can train your mind into expecting good things to happen and feeling them now in your body. Remember, the body doesn’t know the difference between a thought or a real event. And what you send out is what you get back. 

Whether you believe you can or can’t you are right

Whatever is coming up in your life is something you are perpetuating by your thoughts. 

  • Are you always short on cash?
  • Are you always in dead-end relationships?
  • Are you always late?
  • Do you always miss the fun?

It doesn’t have to be that way. You can overcome your programming by continuing to tell the brain how you want to feel. When you find yourself in these old loops, start testing your new skill out, and don’t stop until it feels right and natural in your body.

  • I always have enough
  • My relationships fill me with love
  • I have perfect timing
  • The fun happens when I’m around

It’s the principle of cause and effect. As you think about how you want to feel…you begin to feel the way you think. You are a magnet. And you are attracting to yourself all the things you are constantly thinking about. So stop telling yourself that you are lazy, dumb, depressed, and start acting how you want to feel. 

We can’t think greater than we feel

So stop conditioning yourself into the role of a victim. If you stay there too long your body is going to react. The longer you dwell in self-pity the harder it will be to change. If you need help, get it. Then start owning your life, and step into a life that you love. 

The Connection Between Breathwork & Cold Exposure

Reset Your Nervous System by Doing This Chilling Practice

If you’re paying attention to the breathwork community at all then you’ve no doubt heard of Wim Hof. Better known as the Ice Man, this multiple world record winner has a passion for life and turned his own healing into a powerful method used around the world today. 

If you’re looking for a simple and effective way to boost your immune system, then look no further than this chilling therapy technique. 

The Wim Hof Method (WHM) uses cold exposure to trigger your sympathetic nervous system. Then you use your breath to calm it back into a parasympathetic state. While your mind races your blood slows. The temperature drop in the body puts your nervous system on high alert; focusing on your breath, you learn to control the experience. Once out of the cold your body starts pushing blood out to the extremities and inflammation is reduced. 

The release of adrenalin has been a huge draw for admirers worldwide who are also finding relief from auto-immune disorders, inflammation, injury, and blood circulation. 

An experience that sounds uncomfortable becomes euphoric through your own self-regulation. 

Controlling your core temperature and your breath helps drop you out of the constant mind-chatter we find ourselves in and into our bodies that we are all so disconnected from. 

Why You Should Do It

By exposing yourself to this extreme discomfort for a short amount of time other things begin to shift inside. 

  • You find that using your breath to calm yourself under this immediate threat helps you strengthen your ability to handle stressful situations. 
  • You find your endurance and patience are more accessible through breathwork used to calm the mind. 
  • You find your body temperature is more regulated and that a sudden shift in temperature doesn’t feel so scary anymore. 

The results: more energy and lower stress the natural way. Something pharmaceutical companies don’t want you to hear, but it’s true. Popping a pill for discomfort in our mind and body is sometimes necessary and helpful, but if you’re looking for long-term support– the more natural way– this approach helps you connect to a deeper mind-body connection. Drugs separate us from our bodies. They don’t take away the pain, they disconnect you from it. This detachment only leads to more detachment and more pain down the road. 

A year ago I finally took the leap. After months of avoiding The Hof-Man, thinking no way and that he was too macho for my taste, I gave in and I haven’t looked back since. 

You might be wondering, What does the WHM look like? Here’s a simple breakdown of what to expect. 

Breathing

1. Get comfortable – you can either perform the method in a seated or lying position. If you’re new to breathwork I recommend lying down. Be sure your head is flat, with no pillow or support so you can breathe fully.

2. Perform 30-50 deep breaths. Inhale and exhale through the mouth. Inhale as far as possible, and then release the air without exhaling fully. Don’t take a pause between the inhales and the exhales. This might cause a tingling sensation; that’s normal.

3. After the last deep inhale, exhale all the air out and hold your breath with no air in your lungs, for 1 minute, or until you experience the gasp reflex. 

4. Take a deep breath, inhaling fully, and hold your breath again, but this time only for 15-30 seconds.

5. Repeat the first four steps 2-4 times.

6. After that you will return to your normal breath and start meditating on it. Try for at least five minutes focusing your attention on your breath. 

Cold Therapy

Your breath is now warmed up and you are ready to go. 

You can start training at home in your shower. I like to get in and get the water going at a comfortable temp first. Then I go from cold to hot for 20 seconds each. At least 3 rounds. 

You are in control here so you can start with just exposing a leg at a time, then your arms, and build up to full immersion. 

Or you can just go for it.

I am not great at cold showers and prefer the full immersion of an ice bath or a nice alpine lake. This version doesn’t allow for any cheating on my part and I’m all in. 

You will most likely find the initial shock to cause some hyperventilation to occur. Here’s where you focus back on deep breaths. Allow your body to shake and concentrate on calming your core. 

It takes practice to get out of your head, but the deeper your breath the calmer your mind will become. 

By doing this you are strengthening the small muscles around your veins. When these muscles are working your heart doesn’t have to work as hard to pump blood around your body. 

We all know that our true character comes through in times of stress and discomfort. And we humans do not like to be exposed and vulnerable, yet it is inevitable for growth to accrue. The WHM is one way to train yourself to be ready for these life stressors and help you to grow with more ease because you are comfortable in the discomfort.

The renewed sense of empowerment you get every time you get out of the cold is also good for your self-esteem. Again and again, you prove that you can do hard things, and stay in control when things get tough. 

I suggest heading over to youtube and check out one of Wim’s videos. He is dynamic and crazy, and you can’t help but love the guy. 

Give it a go, and when you’re ready to try an ice bath let me know and I’ll put you on my waiting list for my next Breath, Mindset, & Cold Exposure Workshop.

Note: for safety, don’t perform this technique while driving or in the bath (or anywhere else you might pass out). Also, consult a doctor if you’re pregnant or have another medical condition, to check if this approach is suitable.

Change Your Breath, Change Your Mindset

Change the way you see the world one breath at a time.

From your first breath when you are born, to your last exhale when you leave this world, you are habitually breathing. It happens automatically and without thought. But what happens when you become aware of your breath? 

There are profound healing effects that can take place when you move to a conscious practice of breathing. 

  • You begin to see patterns 
  • You begin to release blockages
  • You begin to find more clarity of thought
  • You feel more in touch with yourself and your surroundings
  • You nourish your body from the inside
  • You increase blood flow
  • You calm the nervous system

Your breath is an amazing and under-utilized power that we are all born with. Taking small steps daily to consciously connect to that source can change your whole perspective. 

Change Your Breath, Change Your Mindset

Most of us, most of the time, are walking around breathing fast and shallow. Thus our thoughts and actions become short and shallow. Why? Because where the breath goes the mind flows.

When you are breathing shallow it’s much easier to be triggered by your surroundings. Think about the last time you were sad, mad, or angry with someone. Feel it in your body. What happens? Your chest tightens and you can feel your breath pump fast and shallow. This is natural. This is what naturally happens in these high-intensity states. The problem is many of us are living in this state all the time. 

Slowing your breath down by consciously taking deeper inhales and longer exhales creates an immediate shift internally. This is why when a child is on the verge of a breakdown we calmly guide them to breathe. Why? Because this slows the mind. Your breath and your mind are like two peas in a pod. 

2 Peas in a Pod

Let’s think about this. When your mind starts to spin into a negative thought pattern your heart rate goes up and your breathing gets more short. Hence, your breath simply follows orders from the brain. And it works the other way too! When you notice that you are in a negative spiral you can, at that moment, make a conscious effort to slow your breath. Instantly your brain will take the queue and slow down too. Once you understand this it’s easy to start to see the link between your breathing patterns and your mindset.

Mindset and the Breath

Breathwork is the gateway to meditation. Whether or not you are someone who meditates or is interested in meditation you most likely have some thoughts built around it. Perhaps you think it’s hard or that you don’t have time for it. You can say the same for breathwork. It’s so easy that it’s hard to remember to take time to dedicate to it. This is where mindset begins. You can begin by dedicating 5 minutes a day to sitting and consciously noticing your breath. 

That’s it. 

Five minutes.

Let your whole mind be in tune with only your inhales and your exhales. 

Soon you will find that you’re craving more than 5 minutes because you will start to notice things shifting inside of you. 

  • Your outside world will begin to reflect on situations in a much broader and clearer way. 
  • You will feel less like a victim to your circumstances and your mindset of life and your connection to it will be altered. 
  • You will notice addictive thoughts and behaviors and use breathwork as a tool to break free from those habits. 
  • You will create space for change to occur that leads you to insights you couldn’t see before. 

We all have a certain amount of trauma we carry around and we all hold a certain amount of shame around that trauma. Your mindset around these situations can be altered by breathing through the pain buried in your body because of it. Once light has been shown to it, you can begin unlayering that pain and shame. 

When you actively change your breathing patterns so too are you changing your thought patterns. 

Mindset work comes naturally when you are consciously breathing. In this type of meditation, your breath reveals to you your triggers and ways to set through them to heal. 

Release

Our thought patterns are shaped by every experience we have. As we age we see examples of our thoughts reflected back to us in all our relationships. We are wired to pick up and see things that mesh with our deep-rooted beliefs. This can be great, but it can also be toxic. 

For instance, if your Mother didn’t show you love as a child, you would have a deep rooted feeling around Moms being distant or unloving. Then, throughout your life, you would pick up on examples of this everywhere you went. Your mind would be completely closed off from the thousand of models that suggested otherwise. 

Breathwork helps break through these hard anchored thought patterns. They are uncomfortable at times, as all growth is, but your mindset will begin to alter and you will start to notice examples of loving mothers all around you. 

This kind of mindset work can only happen when you make the effort to do the work. Breathwork is just one way to walk that path. 

Spirituality and Love

Insights found while consciously breathing help you to see and maintain a healthy love for yourself and your body. This is the ultimate key to finding your true self. Once on that path, your mindset will be your spiritual teacher. You will begin to notice that every time you get up from a breath session that you have new clarity and insight. You might even find yourself linking up with new opportunities and people that before you hadn’t even noticed were there. 

The world is in a funky spot and people everywhere are struggling. Disconnected from each other and ultimately from themselves. We are on so many prescription drugs that numb us from our minds and bodies. It’s hard to find healing in a world like that. 

Using your breath to release old ways of thinking allows your mind to tap into something more authentic within yourself. 

Mindset and Clarity

Slowing your breath and your mind is not only good for your mental health, but it helps you find clarity in your thoughts as well. The deeper you breathe the deeper your awareness becomes. This helps you to be more present in a stressful situation without the risk of a freakout. Clarity helps remind you that we are all connected through our breath. That you can alter someone’s energy by slowing your breath or give in to their energy by raising your breath. The choice really is yours. Because of the high-stress world we live in it’s easy to think that brain fog is normal and anger is just something we all experience. But breathwork helps you to tune into something greater. Something more profound and much more energizing. 

Breath is your life force. As your breath becomes deeper and centered so to will your thoughts. Your mindset can be altered to create powerful positive changes in your life and the lives of those around you, and you hold the tools inside of you to make it happen.

Decide Who You Want To Be, And Then Become The Person Who Does That

How Mindset & Routine control your life.

You have big dreams. You know you are capable of achieving those dreams. You’ve played them out 100 times in your head. If you only had more time, more money. You think this would surely be yours if only you lived in a different time or place. Surely your dreams would be a reality if you didn’t have to go to that job you hate that eats up all your precious time. 

The realities are you dreams can become your future life is you could just get out of your own way. Bogged down by excuses, routine, daily life, laziness, or worse, “they won’t let me”. 

Gurl! I am here to tell you to stop that negative self talk. It’s doing no one any good. All a negative outlook is providing is the comfort of staying put in a life you aren’t 100 percent happy with. 

How do I know?

Because I have a list of my own self defeating habits.

The Goal is to break free from the habits that make your daily life and establish a new routine. After all, our mindset and daily routines control what we really get in life.        

Could it possibly be that fear is holding you back? Or laziness? Maybe you’re a procrastinator, a busy maker, or suffer from analysis paralysis. 

Whatever it is that keeps you tied to living a life designed from your past thoughts and behaviors, today we are going to talk about simple steps you can take starting now to step into the life of your future dreams.        

Fear

We all deal with fear in some way or another. Let’s face it, most of us sit around and let fear control our lives so much that we end up living a life of protective walls guarded by anxiety.

Here is a list of some common fears we all deal with on some level.

  • What if I fail?
  • What if I’m rejected?
  • What if I look bad?
  • What will others think?
  • What if “they” laugh at me?
  • What if I look stupid?
  • I don’t have enough time
  • I don’t have enough money
  • I don’t know the right people

And let’s not forget the I’m nots

  • I’m not qualified
  • I’m not smart
  • I’m not attractive
  • I’m not old enough
  • I’m not young enough
  • I’m not fit enough                 

What I see here is a whole lot of “I’m not enough”. Go ahead, add your own fears to this list. Family fears, social fears, work fears, money fears. 

We all have them. Lurking around waiting for us to step outside our comfort zone. Them Blam-O! They rear their ugly heads.  

What if you took those fears and turned them into a positive? 

For instance, now that you’ve identified your fears, think about what the opposite of those fears would look like.

I’m not smart enough, is huge! but what if you redirected the thought to be something more positive. “I’m learning about my craft, and everyday I feel more qualified to do the work.”

Change, “I’m so tired after working all day to have any energy to pursue my art.” to “I love that I can use my time at work to learn about the online skills I’ll use once my art is online.”

Clearly you need to take the time to re-direct these statements. Make them affirmations. Then post them somewhere you can see them daily. 

Do it Now! I’ll wait.

Remember fear is just energy. And energy can be shifted. It may feel silly or forced or untrue at first, but if you continue to reframe, you will start to feel that energy change within yourself.

The Grass is Greener

Let me tell you what I know about grass. It’s not always greener on the other side. It’s greener where you water it. If you waste your time checking out your neighbors yard and how great it looks instead of focusing your attention on your own yard then yay, their yard will be greener. 

Start taking care of your own yard. Pretty soon you’ll notice you have something in common with the neighbors yard. A conversation will naturally start. Tricks will be traded. The value of both your homes curb appeal with increase, you will be learning as you grow.

In a nutshell, clean up your own backyard. The grass will be greener when you do. 

Take care of all the little things. These add up to the big things. break it down into sections and start plugging away.

Here’s a list of small things you can do everyday that will save you time, money, mental power so you can focus on the important stuff. 

  • Make your bed
  • Take a shower
  • Get dressed
  • Brush your teeth and your hair.
  • Silence your phone
  • Limit your social media scrolling
  • Clean your home.
  • De-clutter

Seems silly? Maybe, but it’s the little things we do to take care of our outer environment that affect our inner environment. Small steps equals big changes.

Baby Steps

Establish a morning routine. Make it one that doesn’t include jumping on your phone first thing in the morning. When you do this you are diving head first into the troubles of the world, and reminding yourself of who you were yesterday. Your algorithm is set up to reflect the person you have been. Not the person you are becoming. 

If this seems impossible to you, then take the time and clean up your feed. Only like and click on positive things and images that will lead you to more of those thoughts and feelings. Dump the voices of negative dividing news links and stories. Make your scrolling a pleasant one.

Start writing down 3 things you will do everyday to lead you into the direction of your dreams. Break them down into baby steps so they don’t overwhelm you. Do these things first thing in the morning so they don’t linger all day. Or plan out what time you will work on them so you don’t continue to put off what’s important.

This will help establish a morning routine that is designed to move you forward.

Simple Not Easy

Note that I said these are simple tasks you can set into motion right now. I did not say easy. This is why it’s important to break the big steps into small ones. 

Making your bed sounds simple enough, but if it’s not a part of your normal daily routine, then it may take some brain power at first. I use this example because there are a ton of studies, stemming from the Marines, that suggest that doing this sets up the vibe of your whole day. Look into it here.

We are all in a state of uncertainty right now as we are quarantined at home. What a great opportunity to establish your new mindset and morning routine. You aren’t going anywhere (please don’t go anywhere), and you have the time. I understand how nice sweats, Netflix, sleeping in can be, but is it helping you reach your dreams? 

Use this time wisely. Get ahead now in your efforts. It’s a great opportunity the world just gave you. You can shine, or scroll. You decide.