Monica B’s Entrepreneur Story

Monica B’s Entrepreneur Story

I am thrilled and honored to be a featured guest on Jan McCarthy’s Entrepreneurial Voice podcast.

In this episode, I share my story of how and WHY I took the leap from the corporate world to begin my career 100% as an Ayurvedic teacher and healer. It was a long road — 8.5 years before I actually made the leap! I hope it sparks a little inspiration for whatever is your dharma (life’s work), so you keep moving toward that dream with bravery, optimism, tenacity, and passion! xo

Below are several platforms for you to listen and look for “Monica Bloom” in the list.

iTunes

Stitcher

Soundcloud

iHeart Radio

What balances vatas and pittas in kapha season?

This question stemming from several of you!

“What balances vatas and pittas in kapha season?”

Overall, vatas and pittas are going to be balanced by kapha season. Happy day!

I quickly made this crude little chart (it shows up reversed in the video), but in very simple terms, these are how the qualities shake out in kapha season.

 

In general vatas and pittas will be balanced by kapha season. In Ayurveda we talk a lot about the qualities and we use the opposite qualities to stay balanced.

Kapha qualities are: cold, wet, heavy, static (non-moving) and dull.

Vata qualities are: cold, dry, light, mobile, and rough.

All vata qualities except COLD are opposite of kapha which means, kapha will balance vata for the most part. However, vatas need to stay warm in their environment, body and diet in spring.

Pitta qualities are: hot, slightly-oily (a little wet), light, smooth, mobile and sharp.

All pitta qualities except wet are opposite of kapha which means, kapha will also balance pitta for the most part! However, anything too humid, wet, or oily will not suit pitta in spring. They should favor the dry qualities in their environment, body and diet.

In a nutshell, vatas and pittas should feel quite awesome in spring. If you are a kapha, learn more on how to balance your mind, body and spirit with this kapha seasonal bloom.

Much more learnings on my YouTube channel and Facebook page too.

XOXO!

 

 

6 tips to help kapha declutter

Kapha declutter

Muy importante! 

Those over-filled closets, basements, garages and storage spaces need attention! Kaphas, be mindful that one of the best things for you is to clear the clutter.  You see, kaphas are the glue emotionally, physically and…materialistically. They like to keep stuff, like, forever if they could. However, this clingy energy bogs them down which is the last thing kapha needs.

Kapha needs more space, lightness, and flow. When we have posessions that are all piled up, we can’t even see what we own, much less enjoy what we have.

A good bi-yearly cleanse of nooks, crannies and closets followed by a trip to the donation station will bring joy and lightness to their lives. For any kaphas having a hard time parting with “stuff” it might be easier to swallow when you know you’ll be giving it to someone else who will love it. Kaphas are very generous and will gladly help those in need, so this could be an easy sell to tell yourself ;)

Detaching is a challenge for kapha. Even emotionally, they can become overbearing, possessive and get depressed if their feelings get hurt too severely. It’s just hard for them to detach sometimes. Kaphas can also hold grudges which will weigh them down preventing their lustrous beauty to shine through.

Here are 6 tips to help kaphas declutter:

  1. Music! Kaphas, put on dancey, happy tunes while decluttering. I created a kapha playlist here. You’ll love it.
  2. Appreciate the mess. We will make a big mess before things get more clean. It might feel terrible but just keep going. Make a mess knowing it’s the only way to get clearance (Clarence. Who got that joke?!).
  3. 3 Piles Only. Keepers, Garbage, Donations. No maybes piles because that can get folded in to garbage bags and put somewhere else.
  4. Don’t reminisce. Don’t get stuck flipping through the beloved scrapbook or photo album. You’ll lose time. Just say, “Keeper pile!” and move on. Reward yourself afterward and look through the memories when the cleaning is done.
  5. Set a timer. Maybe you only have 30 minutes to dedicated to cleaning today. GREAT! Put on the playlist and/or timer and go fast as you can. Or, sock away 3 hours and get it all done at once. Either way, a timer is awesome.
  6. Reward! Plan something FUN to do when it’s over. You can keep your eyes on that prize while digging your way out of clutter. MAN what a great day. Decluttering AND a reward. You’ll sleep like a happy baby.

Vatas and pittas can use this too, but this is not usually a problem for them. Pittas are neat n’ tidy by nature because they love to organize. Vatas tend to throw stuff away and then wish they hadn’t. Ha!

If kaphas can forgive, detach, and let go, they will feel light on their feet — in their hearts, minds, and spirits too.

5 Kapha lifestyle tips

Hooray! We’re in the thick of spring, or in Ayurveda we say, “It’s kapha season!” Kapha is the energy of lubrication and structure – and it’s elements are water and earth. In spring, kapha is the overarching energy in nature and therefore it governs us. We have to adjust according to nature since we are a small piece of nature.

For more information on kapha dosha and kapha season, I created an 18-page Kapha Seasonal Bloom which you can download right here. I know you’ll just love it.

Below are 5 Kapha Lifestyle Tips to staying balanced in spring: 

1) Get moving and sweat. Releasing water through sweat is one of the ways we remove waste and stagnation. Sweating also increases our digestive fire which is responsible for digesting and assimilating our food.

2) Get rid of things. This is the perfect time of year to turn our closets upside-down and toss out what no longer inspires us. Kaphas are sticky by nature so while they want to hold on to things, it’s not balancing for them — it will make them feel heavier. Creating space and air in their physical dwelling will make them instantly happy and light.

3) Donate. For any kaphas having a hard time parting with “stuff” it might be easier to swallow when you know you’ll be giving it to someone else who will love it.

4) Forgive. Let go of any grudges or heavy emotions you are carrying around. They might not even be yours to carry! Heavy or negative emotions can accumulate and weigh you down both energetically and physically. Perform a ritual to say, “Thank you for the lessons, goodbye.” and release it.

5) Dress up! As we emerge from gray winter, spring enlivens us with color! Put away the sweats and toss on a pretty skirt, bright shoes or jewelry that makes you happy. Nature is already a step ahead of you with limey-colored new leaves, purple, pink and white flowers and tangerine sunsets!

How to stay committed to Ayurvedic practice

I feel so much better when I wake up, dry brush, do 10 vigorous Sun Salutes, take some deep breaths, drink a glass of lemon water and the do some pleasure reading or journaling before jumping into my crazy busy day.  I have done it, I know it feels good.  But 97% of the time I decided to sleep longer and then end up in the standard mad dash of a morning. Any ideas on convincing myself to commit to myself?

How to stay committed to Ayurvedic practice

Raise hands, anybody else feel like this?! Maybe not with her exact habits, but how many of you out there KNOW you feel better when you follow through right action in your health habits? Yeah! A lot of us! And yet, for some reason we stop doing them. I think ALL of us can relate! We are human and we fall out of practice and there is always opportunity to start again. However let’s also remember, the goal is not to keep re-starting — the goal is to keep improving for the long term.

In the video below, I answer her question, “How do I stay committed to my Ayurvedic practice.” Let’s be okay with change. Let’s be okay with some difficulty. It is the only way we can improve! I hope this helps inspire you and keep you adhering to life practices that you know work for you! XO

2017 Kapha Seasonal Bloom

Kapha Seasonal Bloom graphic. An Ayurvedic guide to late winter and spring health

Woohoo! 2017 Kapha Seasonal Bloom is ready for ya! Download your copy today to enjoy and learn all about kapha dosha, kapha people, and kapha season.

Those of you who live in cold climates could not be happier to see kapha enter in! Tulip and daffodil leaves start poking up through the snow, limey green buds pop up on the trees, snow and rain does this lovely dance which makes…slush. Ha! But it’s good! Nature is thawing and creation is happening. The brisk, bitter, and dry cold from vata season begins to soften and mellow to welcome the life and freshness of spring.

We begin daydreaming about vacation and are excited to plan some R&R. Our bodies crave warmth as we eye up the sundresses and flip flops at Target — and maybe smell the sunscreen just for fun! Inspiration to buy new stuff and throw out half of the uninspiring things that we currently own does not feel like an impulse as much as it feels like a necessity. We have an overall sense of renewal, creation, and happiness. And finally, we might feel like slowing down to enjoy the ride a bit more and maybe take the long way home. Sauntering never felt so good. YAY! Kapha is here!

Imbalancing for KAPHA: Yogurt, ice cream, cheeses, heavy comfort foods, fried foods, red meat, fish, salts, sugars. A sedentary lifestyle. Having too much stuff. Eating large portions late in the evening. Carrying old, negative emotions, grief or sadness.

Balancing for KAPHA: Vegetarian or vegan diet, apples, pears, berries, lentils and dahls, brothy and spicy soups, barley, rice, rice noodles. Zumba or dance class with a buddy. Clear out cluttered spaces. Saying no. Expressing your desires. Release old emotions that don’t serve you. Skip dinner at least once a week. Citrus scents. Bright colored clothes. Get outside once a day and walk. Uplifting beauty, such as a vase of flowers.

For more KAPHA, sign up for the Kapha LIVE Webinar. April 13 11am PST.

For so much more on kapha dosha and kapha season, enjoy the free download of the 2017 Kapha Seasonal Bloom. And! If it has served you, share it!! It takes a village to share Ayurveda (it really does! Way back 5,000 years ago, they did the same!) in an effort for ALL of us to live abetter. So, if you benefited from it, do me a favor and share this with 3 people, especially your beloved kaphas.

Kapha Seasonal Bloom inside spreads

2017 Kapha Playlist

2017 Kapha Playlist graphic

 

2017 Kapha Playlist!

In Ayurveda, sound is therapy because use the 5 senses as vehicles for healing. One those senses is hearing and we provide good sound for ears to influence the mind, which influences the physical body. I don’t have to tell you that music is highly influential on our mood, but you might not know that it’s actually an Ayurvedic therapy. To promote healing for kapha season (spring!), I created the 2017 Kapha Playlist! This bouncy, dancey, booty-shakin’, kapha-balancing playlist is full of upbeat jams to inspire kapha to get moving and have fun doing it! You might also like to download the 2017 Kapha Seasonal Bloom as a compliment, although I don’t recommend reading and listening at the same time! One, because our body-mind can actually get imbalanced when trying to absorb information from reading (see) and listening (hear) at the same time — we just can’t focus on both simultaneously. And two, because this kapha playlist is NOT reading music – they are total jams! If you try to read and listen at the same time…good luck keeping your feet and booty still! ;) Enjoy!

What IS Ayurveda?

I’ve been writing about Ayurveda for 8.5 years now and have watched it grow rapidly. I’d like to take a step back for a second and answer the question, “What is Ayurveda?”

When I started heymonicab.com in 2008, I would say, “I study and teach Ayurveda” and nobody had a clue what I was talking about. But now I say, “I teach Ayurveda! Have you heard of it?” They say, “Yes! I’ve heard of it.” I respond with, “Do you know what it is?” And they usually say something like, “Mehhh, kinda? No, not really…” This funny looking word has gone from something nobody knew about to something that people now recognize. It’s not quite so foreign anymore!

This is where I come in. If people are able to recognize it now, they’re ready for more information. I created this video to answer the question, “What is Ayurveda?” to give the newbies a broad idea of what it’s all about. Enjoy!

3 Ayurvedic Tips to Help Overcome Emotional Eating

Answering a fantastic question from one of you who wants to know if I have any advice on how to overcome emotional eating. It’s a complex question with complex answers that will be different for each of us! But I do have 3 great tips on how to uncover what the emotional eating might be all about AND how to bring more “higher food” into your life. I hope this inspires, moves some obstacles and inspires new way of thinking about food and your life. You got this!

 

4 Ayurvedic tips for an unreliable schedule

Question from Jessica: “Hey Monica B., How do I follow the daily routine when I’ve got an inconsistent night work schedule?”
I got answers!

And, for any of you out there who deal with other obstacles in your schedule, these tips can be applied to you too.

Enjoy!

Lead with Your Heart

You’ve heard the phrase, lead with your heart. Maybe your yoga teacher has said this to you at some point? Leading with the heart ensures proper posture and opens the heart chakra.

Of course you know I am not just talking about yoga asanas when I say “Lead with Your Heart.” Your passion, compassion, and life’s purpose live there. Our hearts will not fail us. When we get goosebumps, a shot of inspiration, a burst of passion, or a feeling of bliss in absolute stillness, that is the heart. If we follow those ideas, people, places, situations, which make us feel that good, there is no doubt we are doing the right thing.

See, the head knows too much and can easily get confused or push us to do something based on wrong intention. For example, just like that yoga pose, if we lead with our heads, we are likely to be hunched over and out of proper form. Maybe our heads told us we must touch those toes! So big deal, we’ve touched the toes, but we are in a hunchy, non-oxygenated, strained little mess. However…if we lead with our heart, the spine stays straight, heart is open, head is awake, eyes are bright, shoulders are dropped, breath (prana!) flows, and we find ourselves in this beautiful, easy pose. Everything is in harmony and at peace.

What a lovely place to be in. The secret is, we can do that all the time and with everything. Lead with your heart and the rest of life will fall neatly into place. Namaste, friends.

Vata and Vegan Diet

Answering a question from one of you, “I’m a vata but also vegan and I’ve read that Ayurveda says vatas should not be vegan. What do you say, Monica B?”

What we share affects the mind

An excerpt from my book In Your Elements:

To balance out life’s traumas, let us protect and grow our minds…what we share can either send a sparkle of happiness or a ding of awfulness. Let us share gifts of wonder, amazement, delight, love, compassion, and humor. Let us tell stories that inspire and make us smarter. Let us cheer each other on for overcoming seemingly impossible obstacles. Let us celebrate how people succeed at doing their very best with what they have.

3 Ayurvedic Post-Cleanse Do’s and Dont’s

We finished our community kitchari cleanse yesterday and I gotta say, I am SO proud of you!! As we begin eating normally again, you should know about these 3 Ayurvedic post-cleanse do’s and dont’s. Just because the cleanse is over does not mean it’s over! We need a transition period to keep our agni strong. No dumping fried chicken, french fries and hot fudge sundaes into our bellies to celebrate that we did a cleanse ;) Nope. That’s not the way. Check out these tips below.

I’ll be doing MUCH more video on YouTube in 2017 and beyond so be sure to follow my HeyMonicaB channel so you don’t miss a post.
XO!

How to Make Kitchari

Answering your questions and prepping for our 3-day kitchari cleanse, here is my video on how to make kitchari. We can use it any time we need a reset in the body or mind. If you’d like to join over 200+ of us doing kitchari cleanse, sign up here for free!

Kitchari Cleanse

Hey Guys!

I’m doing a LIVE kitchari cleanse Saturday January 14th thru Monday January 16th. The event is FREE. If you can’t make it those dates, register anyway because I’ll leave the recordings up through January 31st :) More info below and I hope to see you there!

WHAT IS A KITCHARI CLEANSE?

A kitchari (KIT-cha-ree) cleanse is a mono diet for 3-7 days to nourish, lightly remove toxins, reset the digestive system, and clear the mind. Kitchari is the go-to Ayurvedic fix when our mind, body, and/or emotions need to hit the reset button!

Wait, what is kitchari, exactly? Kitchari is a traditional Indian dish made of digestive spices, basmati rice, mung dahl and veggies of your choice.

What the cleanse entails: Eating a mono-diet of kitchari for 3 days. You can sip herbal teas between meals. A piece of fruit as a snack is ok if you are very hungry. Take life slower than normal. Easy reading, limit screens (tv, computer, mobile), spend time outside, light exercise, journal.

How will it benefit me? In Ayurveda, kitchari is a considered a pure food. It helps clear toxins, optimizes digestion and clears our mind. We may find that digestive heaviness, bloating, indigestion and constipation will go away. Cloudiness of mind, confusion, uncertainty, or indecisiveness will open to clarity. Negative emotions lighten and dissipate.

The combination of spices work directly on agni and the digestive tract, which helps gather and expel any old, unused, unneeded food stuffs. It also helps burn off ama (toxins) — yay!

A few days of eating this pure food will turn your mind easy, peaceful, and clear.

Come join me on kicking off 2017 with a CLEAR mind and body!! XO! Monica B.

8 Tips for a positive and memorable holiday

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!

Holiday is totally underway.

Everybody will digest the holidays differently. Some people start counting down the days in September. Others are a hot mess of frantic disorganization. Some long for nostalgia as others strive to make this the best holiday ever. Some people get outta dodge and go vacation (that will be us). Some peeps spend Christmas Day on the beach because it’s summer (Hi, southern hemisphere folks! *waving*).

Whatever holiday means to you, I encourage you to…create a story. Don’t wait to be entertained. Don’t wait for something good to happen. Don’t wait for someone to feed you. CREATE it. Create memories. Be the spark! Light it! Show up and be 100% present. You know that saying, “With bells on!” HECK YES! Put yo’ energetic bells on! Be the person with the best hugs. The first to offer the hostess a hand. Use your eyes to fully connect. And for goodness sakes put down the smart phone (unless you are taking pictures)!

OR.
Perhaps you are taking a personal day of downtime and reflection. Not everything has to be a party. Some of my favorite and most memorable days are when I was quiet. Sit in a hot tub (that will be me). Enjoy a quiet day in nature. Breathe in crispy air and let your butt plunk right down in the snow — might as well go all the way back and make a snow angel while you’re at it. Stroll that beach (can you make a sand angel?). Savor that sunset. 

Whatever you’re doing, create a story. You make imprints in your life every single day, so let’s pay more attention. Move and speak with intention. Let’s be ALIVE.

8 TIPS for a positive and memorable holiday:

Don’t complain. Make a conscious effort not to get trapped into complaining, even if others are doing it. It tanks the energy and brings the crap to the forefront. You don’t want the crap. Instead, talk/think about what you are grateful or hopeful for. Keep your energy positive and pure. Bring the energy up.

Ask them. Before talking about yourself, ask how others are and be specific. Inquire and care. Take time to listen and learn something about them. This is what enriches relationships. 

Hold your rose. If certain people are hard to be around on holiday, hold a gigantic invisible rose in front of you (any color! with glitter, sure!). Let any intense words and negative energy fall into the pedals of the rose. That way, you listen, but you don’t absorb what they are dishing out.

Let go of expectations. Don’t think about the holidays of yesteryear or what you want this one to be. Forget all that because neither exists. We so often set ourselves up to feel crummy because of the story we made up in our minds. Instead, embrace the present. Enter with full joy and love and you will create something even better than you could expect!

Get enough sleep. Not enough sleep creates a vata increase and mood swings. Get enough zz’s so you can bring your most present and chipper self! 

Extra water. I know you. You’ll probably have a coffee or cocktail or both (that will be me), which causes dehydration. So start drinking extra water (not on a full stomach) now and throughout all of holiday. Along with lack of sleep, not enough water can cause moodiness, low energy, sluggishness and constipation (which makes anyone cranky. 

Take alone time. No matter what’s on your schedule for holiday, take some alone time. If you are on vacation with your partner or spouse, you still need alone time. It is the perfect time for reflection and rest before jumping into the new year.

Get creative. Ask yourself this question, “What is 1 thing I can do to bring LIFE into today?” And get creative about it. How can you delight or inspire yourself? Others? Try a new recipe? Walk a new path on your hike? Buy fresh flowers? Endless things you can do, but bring a little magic. Bring a little sparkle. That is what creates the memories.

 

No matter what you do for holiday, ENJOY it to the fullest. Create a memory. Create a story.

Wishing you SO much joy, love, and laughter.Til the new year…
Love,
Monica B.

Ayurvedic Coloring Book

Introducing, A Blooming Ayurvedic Coloring Book!

There’s nothing like it and it’s perfect for holiday. Makes a great office gift, teacher gift, or a throw a yoga studio coloring party! Life is your creation and so is your art.

 

Thanksgiving Gratitude

In my Ayurvedic Thanksgiving tips, I suggest writing out a gratitude list. Well hey! You can use this pretty little 2-page freebie printout, the Thanksgiving Gratitude Tree :)

It would make a great accessory to a hostess gift or print out a bunch for your gathering and everyone can fill out their trees. A Thanksgiving Gratitude party! That’s what it’s all about afterall, right?

Page 1 – fill out the circles
Page 2 – explain WHY you are grateful for what’s in the circles.

Thanksgiving Gratitude Tree 2016

dload_orange_button

However you use it the most important part is to connect to what you’ve been blessed with and WHY. Life is incredible. We will receive no greater gift. Even in the most challenging times, we are gaining perspective and wisdom. And we can be grateful for the path. Even if we are feeling a little powerless, gratitude for the struggle is a powerful message, “Thank you for the challenges because it is making me wiser, stronger and teaching me things I would not have learned otherwise. I accept and am grateful for my path.”

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

Love,
Monica B.

 

Vata Empathy

empathy

Empathy.
How does a vata express empathy? Vatas are a total split on the spectrum — either insensitive or hyper-sensitive. Other people’s feelings might not register on their radar at all (me, me, me). Or, vatas can be rocked to the core by another person’s pain because they feel SO much empathy.

Practice healthy empathy by listening, offering help and following through with it (if you are not going to follow through, don’t offer). But don’t letting someone else’s struggle consume your thoughts and emotions. Instead, send a blessing like this, “I send you blessings that all will be well soon and you learn the lessons needed to evolve.” Then let it go like a sparkly mylar balloon in the blue sky. Their struggle is not yours to keep.

This little insight couldn’t fit in the 14-page seasonal guide, Vata Seasonal Bloom. Let’s use our empathy in this world, just not so much that it takes us down.