Tuesday, May 20, 2014

What Happens After "The Cleanse" and Why I Love my Job

I am a “self help junkie” but even I get into a slump.  Many who know me know that I can go into “geek mode”, hibernation… where I get obsessed with a project and sit on the computer researching and reading and typing to the point that I forget mundane things like getting dressed, showers, food, cleaning the house, etc. Can anyone else relate to this?  This is the beauty and downfall from working from home.  Thank God, that some of my clients still come to my home office, otherwise I would have little incentive to clean it…I kid you not!

So what happens after the cleanse?  What happens when you have all of this newfound energy?  When we've released that extra weight and heaviness that no longer serves us.  We are coming out of hibernation mode and are ready for the springtime and yes... spring-cleaning! When what at first appears impossible suddenly seems possible! 

Anything we ignore, mind you, builds up.  What we resist persists, proven by the mold in my refrigerator!  Everyone has been asking me, "When will you have another workshop, another cooking class, or another group in your home?"  Sounds fun and exciting to me until I look at the neglect I've caused and immediately feel overwhelmed.

This is where my cleanse and my job comes to play.  One of my clients came to pick up sprouts this weekend, I made her my green energy soup and suddenly she was daring enough and energized enough to look in my pantry….She happens to be a professional organizer and started giving me my own medicine right back at me!  We started to clear the clutter, which got me motivated to clean a little more on Sunday, a tiny bit more on Monday and this morning, before work, I tackled the almighty refrigerator!  She gave me the little push, a little coaching, a few tips to do little “digestible bites” at a time…sound familiar?  Exactly what I needed to clear the air so that I can complete my summer newsletter, which you will see before the end of the month!

The most miraculous part of this is that what seemed utterly painful to me, really wasn't that bad and was kind of meditative, just like my clients tell me food prep becomes.  Reminds me of the movie Karate Kid…”wax on, wax off, wax on, wax off”.  Will this be my new yoga?  My moving meditation?  LOL & Doubtful!  Still nothing is more fun than yoga dance!

What will you do today with your newfound energy?  What has been weighing you down? 

Please comment below then go to www.carpediemwellness.org to download my free App.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

What do YOU want for Mother's Day?

My husband asked me what I want for Mother's Day.  This is always a tough question for me.  I’ve spent my life caring for others, my first career as a Registered Nurse and then a young mother raising four children.  As women, mothers and caretakers we are conditioned to put others needs first before our own.  Many of us come from puritan backgrounds and taught to always be selfless and accommodating to others needs.  We were taught to fit in, to play well together in the sandbox and to not compete.   But we also live in a competitive capitalistic society with high expectations, particularly if you are from Washington DC.  If you are like me, then you may have an innate competitive nature, maybe one of your strengths is ambition and competition.  If your learned belief is not to outshine others, to play well in the sandbox, you may work well collaboratively while internalizing that competitive spirit.  How many of us are more critical of ourselves than others?  How many of us hold higher expectations of ourselves than we do others?  Being born a twin, in a family of several generations of twins, competition was frowned upon.  If you want to fit in, you must be average; otherwise you risk being verbose and or vain, both shameful characteristics.  I learned to love competition on the tennis court and yet paradoxically noticed how if I started to win by too much of a margin, I would instinctively back off, let the other person win a few games so that we could both feel good and have fun together.  Also interesting to note is that I lost a couple of partners when I didn’t do this.  One friend said she wouldn’t play with me again until she got better, which so confused me.  Wasn’t that the point, to play with someone better so that you could improve your game? How do you get better if you don’t put yourself out there and play? Sports and competition teach us a lot about others and ourselves. 

Someone called me Super Woman yesterday.  I’ve been told before that I had the biggest case of “Super Woman Complex” ever seen.  You see as women, we often internalize that competitive spirit and strive for an unrealistic goal of perfection.  We have to look good, act good, our homes have to be spotless, we have to always be kind, loving, compassionate and giving, with a smile on our face.   We buy the perfect gifts and serve the perfect meals at family celebrations and then wonder why we have a migraine headache and our exhausted when we should be happy and grateful for all that we have.  Yet we ignore our own needs until the pain in the neck or the back or the head gets so big that we have to stop, usually with a cold pack and in bed. 

When asked, what do you want for Mother’s Day, I used to always say, I want everyone to be healthy and happy.   What I didn’t realize was that as a Mother, I had to set the example.  If I was healthy and happy then my children, family and friends were more likely to be healthy and happy.  In fact, I’ve had to learn that I can and must break the puritanical pattern if I want my children and grandchildren to thrive.  Sacrificing the self can not only cause “dis-ease” in the body (as the body tries to send us messages to stop, slow down and treat ourselves well), but it causes sadness, resentment and negative energy and pain to those around us too.   

The antidote, the secret sauce is that self-love and self-compassion allows for self-healing, not only for us but for others too!

It’s really taken me years to truly understand this.  It’s taken a road to recovery with my children and myself to learn this.  I now understand the profound difference between the words caretaker and caregiver.  I now understand that we either react out of fear or respond out of love.   Often my actions were fueled by fear of not being good enough or not fitting in, instead of motivated by what would make me feel better.   I now understand that self-care and self-compassion really is the most loving thing that you can do not only for yourself but also for your family and your friends.  That when you give to yourself first, when you are your best first, then you have more to give to others and you attract others to you.  You attract those who want what you have, which are ultimately more joy, more peace and more love. 

So I wish today for all Mothers a very Happy Mothers Day, one that is filled with celebration and acknowledgement of your love and your actions and the gifts that you have given to others.  Most importantly, I wish for all Mothers the ability to really answer, “What do YOU want for Mother's Day?"  Will we love ourselves today as we love our children?  Will we speak kindly and softly to ourselves and recognize and hush the harsh critic inside?

If you are challenged with this, will you schedule a Discovery Call with me so that we can discuss how coaching or yoga dance or the free Carpe Diem App might be a guide or support tool for you?   Go to my website, www.carpediemwellness.org and download my app and/ or join me on Monday morning in Vienna Virginia at 10am for a fun joyful Yoga Dance class.

Happy Mothers Day and Carpe Diem, seize the day because we only have this moment and this day to live life to its fullest.

With Love & Gratitude,