Category Archives: Energy Shifting

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

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

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.

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!

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

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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

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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. 

Keep it FUN.

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Taking to Root

Hey! You know those life changes you’re putting into play? First, congratulations, you’re DOIN it!! Second, you might not see results just yet but keep working at it day by day. It takes a little time for the sun and the rain to sprout that little seed before we see it peek above the soil. Keep going! *waving pom pons* And a little Toad the Wet Sprocket is always good.

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Pitta Seasonal Bloom 2016

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Pitta season is in full swing — it’s SUMMER time! Summer means sun, summer rain, sweat, swimming pools, popsicles, watermelon, bare feet, vacation, sun hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, and…go find shade! There is so much to look forward to and I’m excited to share my Pitta Seasonal Bloom download with you!

Why is seasonal balance important in Ayurveda? Remember our Ayurvedic foundation, “like increases like.” Which means when the elements/doshas are dominant in us AND in nature, they can overflow and create imbalance in us. When we are imbalanced we start to feel like crud and if we feel like crud for too long, eventually we will notice physical ailments in our bodies or minds. SO! The goal in Ayurveda is to avoid feeling like crud and live optimally by staying in harmony with nature instead of working against it.

Pitta seasonal bloom has loads of diet & lifestyle tips for your mind, body and spirit. Here’s to a happy and healthy summer! *clink!*

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Energetic Hangover

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I’m intuitive and also like a sponge in that I absorb energy from others. I have real empathy for what other people experience and get overwhelmed very quickly. Is this a typical vata quality or is it more complicated than that?

Empathy…vatas don’t “carry” other people’s emotions like a kapha will, but vatas are super receptive (subtle quality) and can pick up on subtle energies. And they are easily bothered by it. Therefore, they are easily affected by other people because they are easily influenced. Yeah? So maybe not so much empathy (that is kapha) but influenced and affected by others’ emotions which can make a vata feel powerless (weak) and anxious (worry about future).

When other peoples’ negative energy is swirling around you, the key is to hold your own energetic space. Otherwise you could end up with an energetic hangover or, as someone once told me, “their vibrational soup.” To avoid hangovers and soup, here are a couple ideas on how to listen without absorbing somebody else’s sludge:

Idea 1: I like to visualize a BRIGHT pink light over the top of my head,  almost like an umbrella or jelly fish or shower cap. And it dumps/glows pink light on me – and as it goes down, it severs ALL ties and strings to anyone who is holding my energy. Then I visualize an opening in the top of my head where I let light in. Light pours in the opening and it builds my energy/glow back up from my toes all the way up through the top of my head until I am full of my own energy. You can practice this every evening or whenever you feel you need it. Dang, I wish I could draw that! Maybe that’s a painting waiting to happen, hey?

Idea 2: You can also visualize a GIANT rose (pick your favorite color! maybe it even sparkles) in front of you. Giant! Like big enough to cover your whole bod. And as people complain to you, let their complaints fall into the rose petals so it doesn’t get to you. Listen while they talk of course, but use the rose as a barrier.

Overall, – Let them go through whatever they are going through, but it does not have to turn into your energy. Give them a silent blessing that they make it through their struggle, lessons learned and a bright outcome. Something like so, “This is part of their path, not mine. I don’t have to absorb it. Blessings and love to them, I know they will figure it out and be better for it.”

Let me know if this helps! Or share this with someone else you think who might need it. xo!

 

When Change Happens

*inhale* Last night I found out that another dear friend of mine is moving cross country. I was IM’ing a coworker this morning and these little words came out of me. Hoping this reaches anyone riding that line of embracing change as it kicks their ass. *exhale*

 

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Your mark in the world will disappear

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This is for all of you who overachieve, bust your ass on a daily basis, or feel pulled in several directions. If days/weeks/months fly by without even realizing how you’ve spent your time, life is too short for that!! Recent perspective shifts have changed my life — I hope this inspires. Love, Monica B.

Backstory: Since I was 20 years old, I’ve been trying to figure out how much stuff I can cram into a day. Because you know, I was supposed work my ass off in order to climb the corporate ladder. And then I would make good money (forget about being an artist! You’ll starve.) to buy a house and save for 401k and my children’s college funds. And frankly, I also wanted to make a mark in the world! Cause we’re supposed to, or something!! Well jeez, that’s a lot of stuff to think about, so I figured I better get crackin’ early. Because of those early beliefs, I’ve never had just one job. For 20 years I have consistently had a full time day job and a part time job, always. At one point I was working from 4:50am until 8:00pm. And yes, I had terrible vata aggravation — for years I never stopped moving. It’s felt like a constant chase.

2012 until recently: I had a 2.5 hour daily commute and a stressful, what felt like round-the-clock job managing a team of eight. I didn’t even like that job, yet all my time was spent doing it because I believed I had to in order to be “successful.” I consistently came home crabby and sad. My reprieve was my family and my book.

Ten days after I launched my beautiful book as part of my personal mission to “make millions of people healthy and happy,” (<–there’s that whole ‘mark in the world’ thing) my dog Blossom died. My heart broke. Everything stopped. My first thought was, “She left too soon. I should have taken her to the park more.”

Instant perspective change: Spend time doing what I love as much as possible. 

A few months later, we went to L.A. and saw a dinosaur exhibit at the museum. Dinosaur bones are 65 million years old. Do you know how flippin’ old that is?! Crazy old! Then I started thinking that dinosaurs probably were competing for territory. Some were probably squabbling over shelter or food. Some wanted to be the best dinosaur, ever! Maybe they had names or addresses. Maybe they built stuff. Maybe one was a saint. I bet some dinosaurs busted their ass to climb the corporate dinosaur ladder, only to arrive there disappointed. I’m sure T-Rex thought he was making his mark in the world. And then, *WHAM!* Meteors hit the earth and they all died. And that’s it. WTFruit?! Millions of years and they are wiped out just like that. They can be summed up in one sentence, “Dinosaurs once roamed the earth.” My stomach pitted when I realized that. What the heck have I been doing all these years and for whom? Cause…I just wanna laugh and paint!

More perspective: I will eventually become unknown or forgotten, so I can ease up on the over-achieving thing. 

Today: Since “more parks” and “dinosaur bones,” (my new mantras) I have chosen a different route. I no longer manage people. I work from home more often. I moved into a design & creative director role where I design all day long! My boss (she’s awesome) and teammates know that my life’s work is Ayurveda and in the near future, it will become my full time job. I started taking violin lessons again. I began cooking more. I hang with friends more. I spend more time outside. I started painting old trucks (I’m obsessed with old trucks but didn’t think they exactly “go” with Ayurveda. But since dinosaur bones, who cares! I’ll paint trucks if I want to). I am now centering my focus into delighting and inspiring people (you!) with whomever wants to join me. As a result of my new route, I AM HAVING SO MUCH FUUUUUN! I LOVE MY DAYS!!

So. If you knew that someday you will be completely forgotten, how would you live differently? If the only reason you are ‘busting your ass’ is to ‘make a mark in the world’, you are missing the point. Life is to be enjoyed. Marks in the world are not permanent. Dinosaurs die.

Whatever it is you do, enjoy your every day. You will find that marks or waves you desire to create will only come when you extract your best, most authentic self and have fun sharing your gifts. Life is short and marks in the world are not permanent anyway — just make your every day awesome. LOVE YOU with my BIG FUZZY HEART!!

If you want to support what I’m doing with Ayurveda and bringing MORE life goodies out there, grab a copy (and hold on tight, life is a wonderful ride!) of my book and spread the word on Amazon with a review! Xoxo!Buy_book_here

Bit o’ Wisdom {55}

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Take an every day vacation

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You just got back from a wonderful vacation and after 2 days back in daily life, you’ve already lost your bliss and relaxation. What the Fruit?! Well truth is, life is long and vacation is not. So, let’s learn how to bring joyful aspects of vacation to our every day — daily enjoyment is what life is all about. While taking time to luxuriate might seem impossible (or makes you roll your eyes), it’s not. It just requires a little prioritization and focus. We work hard — we all deserve to take an every day vacation.

What do we do on vacation that we don’t do daily?
{we don’t work • we spend more time outdoors  • we have the luxury of time • we see beautiful things • we eat yummy, fresh food • we listen to different music • we get extra sleep}

So let’s bring these to life.

7  enjoyments to take an every day vacation:

1) Work. In general, I believe most of us like to work as long we are doing something we enjoy. We like to produce, create, think, and watch things grow based on our efforts. Remember we are getting paid – holy flip! – to do what we love to do, daily. Now, for those who really hate the ol’ jobby job, switch jobs if you can. If that’s not possible, then realize the job now serves a purpose and will pay for necessities and things you enjoy, while you seek/create the job you love.

2) Time outdoors. On vacation we spend time outdoors and even exercise outdoors. At home, we might hit the gym, workout class, or jump on the treadmill in the basement. Notice those are all indoors? As beings of nature, nature revitalizes us. We feel amazing in nature because it’s our home. Get outside, daily! Even 20 minutes will do wonders.

3) Luxury of time. How can we get more time into the day? We can’t. Time is time. But we can use the time we have, better. Instead of noodling online, put on sneakers and power walk for 30 minutes. Instead of complaining to a coworker, go outside, find a bench, sit n’ breathe. Wake up early, enjoying the twilight into sunrise while you light a candle and journal intentions for the day (no complaining in your journal — rainbows and sunshine).

4) Beautiful things. How can we bring in more beauty to the daily-daily? Flowers on the table. Beautiful, transportive photos at home or work. New dangle earrings, a mala bracelet or sparkly crystal. Can you work by a window? Can you get a natural light lamp? Himalayan salt lamps are awesome. What do you see on vacation that you could bring to your every day?

5) Eat fresh, yummy foods.  You are the one choosin’ your groceries so…choose ones that make you feel amazing! Does mango make you feel like life is easy? Get it. Avocado make you feel spoiled? Do it. An afternoon chai latte? Have it and savor. Hand-made pasta? Take some extra time on a Saturday and make it. Thai food your fav? Get a Thai cookbook and commit 1 recipe to memory.

6) Happy music we normally don’t listen to. Pandora, Spotify, Google Music (formerly Songza). All of these give us world music at our fingertips. Some of my favorite transportive music stations on Pandora are: “Wes Anderson” (makes me feel like I’m pedaling around Paris with flowers and bread), “Tycho” and “Washed Out” (makes me feel like I’m on a hazy beach in SoCal), “Nightmares on Wax” is another easy chill mix, “1901” makes me want to dance. Google Music is also super fun where you choose songs based on your mood or how you want to feel.

7) Getting extra sleep. No you can’t sleep in daily like you can on vacation, but there’s an easy fix. Go to bed earlier. Spend 1 week going to bed at 8pm or 9pm and see how fantastic you feel. Use this when needed. When I was writing my book, I would stay up mega-late 2-3 nights in a row and then balance with 2 nights of going to bed at 8pm.

Whattaya think? Are you inspired? What other ideas do you have – do share!

If we spent more time enjoying each day and less of a focus trying to escape it, we would feel nourished and enriched, every single day. That is the good life, my friends. Finally, please enjoy my favorite little story about the Mexican Fisherman and The Investment Banker. Love!

6 Ayurvedic Tips to Balance the Time Change

Time_change

Oh man, our clocks changed! Just as we got used to the glow of the sun waking us, it’s pitch black again when the alarm goes off. The reward is a longer day, which, “Hooray for daylight!” but the time change can still throw us off. Time change in Ayurveda affects vata because, well, we’ve made a fast change. *Poof* just like that, we gained an “extra hour.” It can take some of us weeks to adjust but hopefully the tips below will help you slide back nicely into nature’s rhythm quickly.

6 Ayurvedic tips to balance the time change

1. Wake up before sunrise. Ha! Easy enough to do now, ’cause you kind of have no choice. My point is, just because it’s dark at 6:00 a.m., don’t go hittin’ the snooze until the sun comes up. We already know waking up during vata time (before sunrise) gives us a daily boost because as we rise in the energy of movement. So keep doing that! Yes it’s dark, but you’ll have more energy than if you pull the covers over your head until sunrise. Not only is sunrise kapha time and therefore slow time, but you’ll be late for work (pssst, ’cause work still starts at the same time).

2. Cook at home, with fresh ingredients. As always in Ayurveda we strive to put the best foods in our bodies, always. During the time change, it’s especially important. Best is to make sure foods are made at home with fresh ingredients including plenty of fruits and veg. Not too much dairy!

food ideas!
• Instead of Chinese take out, make fried rice at home, use extra veggies and less soy sauce (salt).
• Instead of delivery pizza, pick up some pre-made pizza dough (Trader Joe’s has it), brush some olive oil onto the crust (bonus if you want to infuse the oil with garlic) or a little sauce. Add a wee, thin layer of cheese. Then load up the crust with all your favorite vegetables like kale, zucchini, peppers, whatever you love.
• Do I even need to tell you a nice batch of kitchari will help set you straight?
• Instead of sit-down Mexican, grab all the supplies including beans, meat (if you choose), avocado (yes please!), peppers, corn tortillas (bonus if you make them yourself), rice, fresh cilantro and all the fixin’s. You will have far less salt and sugar in what you make at home. I advise skipping the taco seasoning and make your own mix with cumin, chili powder, and other spices.Or, a little salt & pepper is all you might need. Choose the fresh-made salsa in the produce isle instead of the room-temp stuff in the chip isle. Below is a pic of my dinner last night: homemade spanish rice, homemade tortillas, avocado, bell peppers, cilantro and hot sauce. mm!

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3. Limit salts & processed sugars. Tons of excess salts and sugars lurk in foods especially from chain-restaurants, pre-packaged foods or frozen foods. Eating those foods at any time can make it extremely challenging to wake up in the morning (cue the, “I’ve feel like I’ve been hit with a baseball bat” wake-up). Salt holds water and creates heat so it’s great for vata-types in winter, but no bueno for kapha season. So again, keep foods as veggied and fruitied and grainy-ed as you can! Fresh fresh!

4. Oil Massage! “Yeah yeah, Monica B. You and your oil massages.” Dude, but since time change is a vata change and we calm vata directly through the skin, now is a perfect time not to slack on oil massages. Plus your skin will feel like a baby! Trust me.

5. Water. Drink plenty of it — not too cold and no ice (vata-imbalancing). You might be drawn to choosing extra coffee or stimulants to keep your peeky eyes awake since you got up early, but try not to have any more (if any) than you normally would. Choose extra water since water flows…it will help you go with the flow

6. Normal bed time. It’s only been one day since the time change, so you might still look at the clock at 10:00 p.m. and think, “Pah, it’s really only 9:00…I can stay up for another hour.” No, it’s really 10:00 p.m. ;) So get your lil’ booty to sleep on time so you can wake up in the dark easier (hehe).

7. So Hum. As you prepare for sleep, lay in your right side and do “so hum” mantra and meditation for a minimum of 10 minutes. If you fall asleep before you’re done with the 10 minutes, bonus!

If you adhere to these things for 3-5 days in a row, you won’t even notice the time change, I promise.
Hint: You can use these same tips for air travel!
Double Hint: You can do these things daily and change your entire life! <—10% off with code 6ZE83B8R thru 3-31-16.

XOXO!

Bit o’ Wisdom {53}

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A Moment for Reflecting

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On the 11th day of Ayurveda my spirit gave to me

A MOMENT FOR REFLECTING

Psst…the holidays are over. Happy New Year! Phew, we made it. Today might be the first day in a while that you’ve had nothing “to do.” It’s a great day for relaxing — you know like fuzzy jammies, the parade of roses, new slippers on thine feet — and appreciating what was awesome in 2015. It’s also a good day for reflecting on things that were not awesome in 2015 — things we might want to leave behind that no longer serve us.

I am a firm believer that before we can move onto something new and fresh, we have to give thanks and release the past. That way we can move forward cleansed, refreshed, with lessons learned and build upon something new for this year.

So! In celebration of the new year, first I have some questions for you from 2015. It’s good to write these down in a little journal or wherever makes you happy. You can save them or put them ablaze in the fireplace — whatever inspires you.

RELFECTING ON 2015

Make a list, as long as you want, of what you were most grateful for in 2015.
What were your 3 most favorite moments or accomplishments?
What were some of your biggest challenges?
What were the most impactful lessons learned (take these with you)?
What can you absolutely leave behind (don’t need it, leave them)?
Do you have a rant for 2015? Write it all out…get it out of your system…go ahead.

This will essentially “cleanse” your 2015 energy to start 2016 anew.

And the rest of em…

10 Appreciating simple things
9 Phew, I found my grounding
8 Time and space for breathing
I might be over-spending
6 E-gads I’m overeating
5 Oops, too many cocktails!
4 Wisdom for right choices

3 Staying in the present
2 A path for evolving
AND
1 Permission for my authenticity

Appreciating Simple Things

On the 10th day of Ayurveda my spirit gave to me

APPRECIATING SIMPLE THINGS.

 

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Oh boy! It’s been busy, hey? Travel, family, friends, food, drinks, gifts — there are so many things happening at once that we blink and Christmas is over. By now we might be calming down from the flurry of all we had been getting ready for for weeks.

When it’s all over there is pause, quiet. After our recent busy-ness, we might find ourselves gravitating to a space of finally appreciating the small things. We might spend an entire day lounging around to enjoy our new gifts or watching mindless movies. Or, maybe we reflect on an impromptu conversation that turned out awesome, a new discovery about a loved one to help deepen our connection, or maybe simple foods as a contrast to abundant rich food over the past couple days.

Personally, I am enjoying these simple things: sinking in to my new feng shui book, having nothing I “must” to do, no time constraints, and looking forward to watching a Packer game today with my dear friend.

Your turn! What simple things are you enjoying now that Christmas is over?

Sing it back down….

9 Phew, I found my grounding
8 Time and space for breathing
I might be over-spending
6 E-gads I’m overeating
5 Oops, too many cocktails!
4 Wisdom for right choices

3 Staying in the present
2 A path for evolving
AND
1 Permission for my authenticity

Phew, I found my grounding

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On the 9th day of Ayurveda my spirit gave to me,

PHEW, I FOUND MY GROUNDING.
Phew! Breathing actually works, hey? The power of staying still and breathing is super underrated. I mean, we live in a a world that keeps us addicted to busy-ness. We try to move as fast as possible to accomplish as much as we can with the least amount of effort. This speed and lack of adherence creates increased vata for everyone as we become totally ungrounded. By the way, putting in effort is also underrated. Books do not get written without effort…just sayin.
Here’s something to remember: When we stop, the world actually doesn’t! The world will keep spinning even if we slow down or stop. Slowing down is necessary. If we keep grounded and consistent our daily practices of good breath, quality food, heartfelt love, sound sleep, and putting in good effort work, that’s enough in a day.
My favorite quote is “There is more strength in surrender than there is in forging ahead.”  So this holiday and in the new year ahead, let’s sloooow down and ground.