lifestyle

Things I Learned in 2014

I know it’s not over yet, but I couldn’t help to reminisce and share 🙂

Less is more.
As in clothing. Only buy what you absolutely love and look’s great on you. Not that shirt that looks ok and you might wear once in the next two years. I’m all about the French ideals of the 10 piece wardrobe. I might not go that far, 10 pieces seems very unrealistic for me, but I’ve dramatically cut back.

Just start!
Worrying about what might happen is a complete waste of time. Just do it. Just start. Somehow make it work. Go to the blank canvas without expectations, without caring if things get messy and without worrying if the end result is ugly. Just start.

Drink the coffee.  So what if your friend’s yoga teacher’s holistic nutrition coach says coffee is bad for you. I give you permission to drink it, because it’s damn good and you like it. And you cannot imagine your morning without it. Only say no to coffee when you’re on a cleanse, the rest of the month go for it if you wanna!

coffee

Speaking of coffee….Mornings can be delightful.
I’ve spent nearly my whole life dreading mornings. Now, I don’t mind them at all and in fact quite enjoy my little morning rituals.  I’ve even created a no-filler, to the point guide for everyone to find magical mornings.

Taking on new hobbies is confidence boosting. 
Like dancing.  
Learning to ballroom dance has had a tremendous impact on my life. I adore ballroom dance now and am looking forward to learning the art of the Argentine Tango in the future! I hope to spend the rest of my life dancing.

dance

No matter what you fear the outcome might be, if you aren’t voicing your feelings (1) no one will know and nothing will change (2) you’ll be doing more harm than good. Speak your truth.

I love the summer. My whole life I’ve spent in love with winter but this year I am finding the winter too harsh for my skin and bones.  I spent my summer weekends soaking up the salt air at the beach as much as my schedule allowed for it and I loved every second of it.

Treat everything like an experiment so you can never fail, you can only revise and re-try!

During my time in Nicaragua I really learned to waste less.  They didn’t have the means to buy a new chair the day theirs broke, they would fix it themselves. They didn’t have a trash truck coming to their house each week, they had to burn it. Everything was fixed, reused, repurposed or burned in the village we stayed in.

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Pursue what excites you. It seems silly and like DUH, but I don’t think I really got it until this year. The things that give me energy, make my heart beat faster, those are the things I need to be doing more of in my life.

It’s ok to say no to an event. If you don’t want to go to something, then don’t! Why suffer through it. Do what you want to do.

Finding your personal style is fun.  I’ve never been into fashion at all. I’m the type that will be 5 of the same shirt in different shades of black and grey. But this year, more so this month, I’ve been reading more about fashion and trying to find my own unique style. Perhaps it’s because I’m getting closer to 30 or perhaps it’s because I’m ready for a change but fashion is actually fun.

What did you learn this year?  Make a list and feel free to share! It can be enjoyable to go back through the year and reminisce some big aha moments.

lifestyle

What’s Your Hypothesis?

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Experiment

What’s the first thing that pops into your head when you hear the word experiment? Maybe middle school science class?

I live my life based on experiments. In a way that nearly everything I do is an experiment.

I do this based on two reasons:

  1. If it is an experiment, there is no such thing as failure. Outcomes of experiments are not based on winning or failing, they are based on conclusions. Once you have a conclusion, you can compare it to your hypothesis and then from there suggest ways to better the experiment. So every time I do an experiment, failure is never a possibility, my only choice is to look at the process and find ways to either improve it or let go of it and move on.
  2. If I mess up mid-way and veer off of my intended path it doesn’t mean that the whole thing is over. It gives me a chance to reevaluate the reasons I am doing something and motivate myself to get back onto track. It’s not an all or nothing process. Error will happen and that is ok.

The month of August I created a #ReBagIt Challenge and invited all of my Facebook friends to join.  This experiment was to see if we could go a whole month without using plastic bags from stores. This brought attention to our overuse and waste of plastic bags and personally brought attention to how much I purchase on a weekly basis. The beginning was fairly easy; “I don’t need a bag” was all I really had to say. There were times I wouldn’t even remember until the cashier had already bagged everything. At which point I would kindly tell them I don’t need a bag and explain why. Times also happened when I down right completely forgot until the bags were in my car. What I learned from this experiment was that I buy way to much stuff and I have a horrible memory even in relation to things that are important to me. Going forward, I will try to find creative ways to remember things and also remind myself to buy less.

I am also currently doing a 30 Day No Drinking Experiment. Now, when I first decided to do this (19 days ago) I didn’t really have any clear goals, reasons or even a number of days that I wanted to do it for. In a moment of BBQ-outdoor-summer-weather-weakness, day 15 I had a glass of champagne. I don’t even want to call it a weakness because that ‘error’ was what helped me get clear on my no drinking experiment. So, it took be until day 15, post champagne, to get solid on my goals and affirm my 30 days as the number I wanted to do. I’ll keep you posted on the results come day 30! But this was a great way for me to learn that I need clear, solid goals and reasons why. I need a hypothesis.

Experiments can be used for anything. Work, relationships, lifestyle changes.

  • Curious how something works, experiment it.
  • Want to do something you are nervous about, experiment it.

I’ve created a guide for you to plan out your experiments with. Use it, share it, love it, and let the experimenting begin!

Get your Soul Experiments Guide here!

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lifestyle

Who are you benefiting?

Everything we do affects someone else on some level.

Even if we don’t mean for it to. Even if we think it will.

When you start something new, can you ask yourself what this will do for you and what this will do for the world? If you are starting a project and it only benefits you, chances are it will not be sustainable long term. If it only benefits the world and will leave you drained, then again chances are it will not be sustainable. But when you can find something that benefits and supports you and the world then you have a keeper.

Driving down the road, you pop in a piece of gum in your mouth and have two choices of what you can do with the wrapper. Choice A being to throw it out the window and Choice B being to put it in your cup holder and throw it in the trash when you exit your car. There are positive and negatives to both choices. Choice A allows for convenience to you, it’s easy to roll down your window and throw the trash out; it’s one less thing you have to do in the future. So yes, it is a benefit for you in the short term, but is it a benefit for the world? Heck-to-the-no. Choice B allows for a cleaner environment, less trash on the streets and an overall benefit to the world. Though it is not really convenient for you, it provides a clean environment for you to live in which will greatly reduce stress and anxiety as well as improve relaxation and tranquility.

Choice B:

Benefits the world? Check!

Benefits you? Check!

Really that was an extremely basic example but do you get my point now?

Every action you take, every plan you make, every goal you decide to conquer needs to benefit not only you but also the world. Because in the end, what benefits the world will also benefit you.

Soul Action: Ask yourself how and why this will benefit you and then how and why this will benefit the world.

lifestyle

My Story

I became passionate about detoxing but it wasn’t a stroll in the park.

I hit a wall in my life…more like I hit the couch… Stressed, overweight, under nourished and in need of a major life re-vamp.  I had just had two back-to-back shoulder surgeries, was out of work (Bored!), and unable to be active so I turned to baking and cooking AND eating.  Fast food, nachos, burgers, the heart-attack-waiting-to-happen kind of foods.  I gained 30 pounds, had absolute horrible acne and felt depressed, bored, irritable and just plain “blah”.  I started yoga after my shoulder surgeries to help ease the pain (which it did) but I also learned more about my SOUL and what it was actually craving (physically and mentally).  I knew I needed to change because I couldn’t deal with gaining one more pound!  I was also pretty exhausted, tired and wanted energy and passion.

I browsed through yoga websites daily and started teaching myself how to eat properly.  I learned what kale was, how to make yummy green smoothies and that beets are actually pretty darn delish!  As I started walking (running) towards a more clean diet the weight started coming off and my energy started rising.

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Blah to SOULful

What really pushed me over the kale loving edge was when I stumbled my way into a three-day detox.  L-O-V-E at first glance.  I learned a lot from the detox, about myself, my eating habits and how to bring what I learned into my everyday lifestyle.  When people think detox or cleanse, they tend to think of removing but that is not the case AT ALL.  It’s a simple formula really.  Subtract the evil, add the wonderful.  Think nourish not strip. My detox started with food and each time I detoxed I added more of my own wellness ideas and tips into it which made my experience a total wellness detox — mind, body and SOUL.  This was important for me, I needed the WHOLE PACKAGE.

Today, I am proud to say I have lost over 25 pounds!  Not only have I lost weight, I am more energized, focused, confident and HAPPY.  I have completed several 5k’s, a 10 mile Broad Street Run and a sprint Triathlon, all while enjoying cupcake every now and then.  I was able to find balance (had to find balance) because I never want to give up the comfort foods that I do enjoy.

My goal is to help EVERYONE find their perfect balance.  Achieve their greatest goals.  Feel confident, happy and PROUD of who they are and to realize that a healthy life is all about finding balance in the mind, body and SOUL.

To learn more about the 21 Day be SOULful Program head over HERE