Monday, April 21, 2014

Kick Start: Excite Your Spirit


Ah... Rumi wisdom:

“There is a community of the spirit. Join it, and feel the delight of walking in the noisy street, and being the noise. Drink all your passion, and be a disgrace. Close both eyes to see with the other eye. Open your hands, if you want to be held. Sit down in this circle. Quit acting like a wolf, and feel the shepherd’s love filling you. At night, your beloved wanders. Don’t accept consolations. Close your mouth against food. Taste the lover’s mouth in yours. You moan, “She left me.”"He left me.” Twenty more will come. Be empty of worrying. Think of who created thought! Why do you stay in prison when the door is so wide open? Move outside the tangle of fear-thinking. Live in silence. Flow down and down in always widening rings of being.”

Let's talk passion + excitement: What lights you up? What are you forever day-dreaming about? When do you feel your most radiant? Most electric? Wildly ALIVE? Share your top three dreams that, once achieved, you know you will have really lived this life.

KA-POW! GO B-I-G in the comments and amp up the energy on your dreams!
Beyond excited to get to know this part of who you are x


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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Are You Holding Onto Anger?


The other day, I woke up in a bit of a funk. Something was off. My mind was in another world, my emotions were ultra-sensitive, and I wanted to be left alone. I was like a ticking time bomb of emotion, and was set off. I over-analysed, let my emotions take hold of me, and then there I was, in a full-blown argument.

Before I knew it, I was filled with anger.

My body was swirling in a sea of emotion, and I couldn't get a grip on anything. It felt like out of nowhere I was hit with a ton of bricks and calming myself down was an impossible feat. Everything was one massive struggle.

The smallest thing set me off and I projected the emotions I woke up with onto my husband, creating an argument over something completely insignificant. I tried to pull myself together, because what the hell was wrong with me?! but as soon as he walked out the door, I cried. Not just any cry, but I really, really let it all out. The full-on sobbing, gasping for air, ugly cry.

And you know what? In that moment, I didn't dive into a story over why I was upset, I didn't sit with my anger, letting it stew and grow. I didn't retrace what happened or search for answers over why I felt the way that I did. I cried for the sake of crying, because I needed to. I let it all out because I knew there was something inside of me that needed to be released.

Even when I felt like I could 'pull it together' and 'suck it up', I cried some more.

When my tears ran dry, I sat there, surrounded by tissues, with the weight lifted from my shoulders.

I felt my inner voice tug at my heart, "This is where the work begins." And I rolled out my mat for a Kundalini yoga class, specifically designed to help release inner anger and remove the inner conflicts that sap us of our vitality and sense of self. Yep, sounds about right.

Powerful breathwork, vigorous body movement, profound energy release, deep meditation...
Often we think that experiencing strong emotion means there's something fundamentally wrong with us or that being sensitive means that we're weak. That couldn't be further from the truth. It's how we view our emotions that's backwards.

When your body is shaking from anger or your lips are quivering from sadness, it's simply a build up of energy that needs to be released. Bottling it up, turning a blind eye, and shoving it away only creates havoc over time as it bubbles to the surface. Diving into the depths of the why and how of negative emotion by picking it apart only results in even more frustration and despair. It's best to release and let go.

Let go of the burden you've been carrying with you and let the tears stream down your face, let the words flow recklessly onto the page, move your body with intention...

In this place of vulnerability, fear rears its ugly head and it can feel like we're going to be swallowed up whole by how we're feeling. It won't. I'm not going to bullshit you and tell you it feels good, because it doesn't, but the alternative of not feeling is way, way worse. Suppressed feelings act like energy blocks that prevent you from living authentically, and accessing the true nature of who you are.

What I will tell you is this - the release, the sublime feeling in letting go of what you've been holding onto and damn-near white-knuckling, is euphoric. It's transcendent. It brings you back home to yourself.

Just... feel.

In all honesty, for me, putting on a mask, hiding my emotions, and "toughening it out" became second-nature, and it's in the practice of breaking free of that habit that I've found true solace.

It's my hope that you received some value from this post, and if this resonated with you, I'd love for you to share your insights in the comments and let me know how this spoke to you. (And of course, feel free to share around the web using the buttons below. Thank you so, so much x)

Monday, April 14, 2014

Kick Start: Seek Truth (New Desktop Wallpaper For You!)


Often we place our gaze outside our windows, hoping for better days.

A grand adventure, a career that lights us up, a relationship that makes us weak in the knees...

We want that new pair of shoes, to get the degree, upgrade our computer, lose the weight, sign for the mortgage, make the deal, hit that target, get x amount of followers, thousands of page views, sign on the dotted line... then we'll be happy. Then we'll feel like we've really made it.

We seek external approval to validate ourselves. Our success. Our worth.

Then one day, you're there but you realize what you thought you wanted wasn't what you wanted at all. The goals, the due dates, the 5 year plans - all the chasing, pushing, striving... what was that for?

Feeling how you want to feel, discovering who you were born to be, living how you want to live doesn't come from discovering something 'out there'... it comes from being courageous enough to explore within.

Creating a life you love is an inside job.

Be brave. Be vulnerable. Seek truth.

TELL ME: What would it feel like to ditch the limiting belief of "I'll be happy when I... (get the guy/ get hired for the job/ achieve_____/ buy ______/ learn _____)? What would it feel like to choose happiness and be grateful right now? For fun, share three small things you could do this week! Can't wait to chat in the comments.


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Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Books That'll Inspire: 21 Radical Reads

Getting lost in a good read for hours on end.

Endless wisdom, unwavering support, soulful musings...

Ah-HA! moments a plenty.

It's no secret that digging my nose into a book is a favourite of mine. There's something so incredibly powerful and potent about the written word. Books - and I'm talking great books that will motivate, inspire, uplift, and quite possibly change your life.

I've compiled the best of my bookshelf - some of my absolute favourites (mostly of the non-fiction variety) that have inspired me when I've felt lost, shifted my mindset, opened my eyes, inspired and supported me - in hopes that it will serve as a great resource for you to bookmark and come back to whenever you need something new to dig into.

Enjoy + Happy Reading! (And comment with some of your own favourites! I might be a bit of a book hoarder.)

SELF-EMPOWERMENT + TRANSFORMATION


The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer
Profound. Expanding. Transformational. Cracks you wide-open, in the best possible ways. I'm endlessly recommending this to loved ones. It will change your life.

The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte
Soulful. Inspiring. Supportive. Unmasks your deepest desires right before your eyes and dives into the depths of who we are and how we want to live. Danielle just... gets it. In her own words, "This is about liberation. And pleasure. And self-determination. This is about doing much less proving, and way more living."

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
Dive into the profound and moving lessons taught by this classic that needs a spot on everyone's bookshelves.


A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle
This spiritual manifesto will open your eyes in a completely new way, awakening the presence of awareness that lives inside all of us. Shedding light on our ego - the inner saboteur - and how to create space around those thoughts so we can live fuller, more joyful lives.

“You do not become good by trying to be good, but by finding the goodness that is already within you, and allowing that goodness to emerge. But it can only emerge if something fundamental changes in your state of consciousness.”

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Powerful teachings on living in the now (and what that means) and how we are the creators of our lives.

Heart Thoughts by Louise Hay
A stunning and beautifully illustrated book that's perfect for a quick pick-me-up when you need it. Soul-hugging affirmations on the spot by  - keep this one nearby. One of my favourites:

"Release the emotional attachment
to beliefs from the past
so that they don't hurt you in the present.
If you live fully in the moment,
you cannot be hurt by the past,
no matter what it was."


The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
Simple + actionable wisdom that will touch, move, and inspire.

Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain
Timeless meditations and affirmations that guide you and put the reins in your hands so you can (actively) create the life you truly want to live.

The Dark Side of the Light Chasers by Debbie Ford
Game-changer. Raw. Honest. Soul-stirring. Read all your affirmations but yearning to dive deeper? Are there a few skeletons in your closet or are you holding onto limiting beliefs that you just can't shake? The teachings that Debbie Ford brought into the world are like none other. Spirituality isn't just about accepting the 'pretty parts' in our lives, it's accepting our darkness too.

WRITING + CREATIVITY


Writing Down The Bones by Natalie Goldberg
As Natalie Goldberg says, "Writing is the act of discovery."
This one's for all the writers (or aspiring writers) - chock-full of both clear lessons and exercises guaranteed to get your creative juices flowing.

Writing Down Your Soul by Janet Conner
Looking to cultivate a journalling practice in your own life? Discover just how powerful it can be for your life.

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
Looking for that swift kick to get shit done? Turn pro with this fierce read. It's that good.

PRODUCTIVITY + ENTREPRENEURSHIP 


Eat That Frog by Brian Tracy
Simple but powerful nuggets information to beat procrastination, once and for all.

Start With Why by Simon Sinek
Everyone knows what they do, but do they know why they do it? A concept that will leave you thinking, "How didn't I think of that?" that you'll want to implement, straight away. (Also - watch this.)

Making Ideas Happen by Scott Belsky
Consider yourself spontaneous and creative? Have you set aside any elements of structure, organization, and time-management? While the words may not be ground-breaking, it hammers down the notion of one thing (and how to do it): if you want to make ideas happen, you have to take action.


The Dip: When to Quit (And When To Stick) by Seth Godin
Practical. Potent. The truth about quitting: "Winners quit fast, quit often, and quit without guilt." So, when should you?

The Firestarter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte
The ultimate guide to creating your purposeful, inspired, passionate success. In her own words, "The Fire Starter Sessions is the permission slip you’ve been waiting for – to fully want what you want and go for it, to expand your consciousness and your cash flow, to up the ante on your dreams, to be incredibly generous with your love."

168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam
For the people who proclaim, "I don't have enough time."


MEMOIR + NOVELS


Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed
Gripping. Wildly inspiring. Cheryl's own experience on the PCT (Pacific Crest Trail) will not only have you turning page after page, but wanderlusting over your next great adventure and lacing up your hiking boots in no time.

Love with a Chance of Drowning by Torre DeRoche
Utterly gripping. Torre words read like poetry in this true story about falling for a man with big dreams and sailing down an adventure of a lifetime. With a mix of soul-bearing + hilarity + "you just couldn't make this stuff up!" moments, you'll be hooked.

Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed
Raw. Honest. Touching. Wise. Compassionate. So very real. Sugar - once-anonymous advice columnist has now been revealed as Cheryl Strayed - offers up real-world advice for anything and everything that life throws us. It will leave you feeling endlessly supported, tears streaming down your face, and fiercely understood. I zipped through this breathtaking novel in no time, hardly ever setting it down.

OVER TO YOU: What books top your list of must-reads?

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