What If Less really is more?: A Small Good Thing {A Review}

Read full article | 1 Comment

Do you believe that you have to work  60-70+ hours a week, buy all the nice things and have a steady job with a salary (and benefits!) to be fully happy? Got the whole work hard, live hard thing a bit backwards? Feel like you always need to do more, more more?

I sure did. I thought that if I worked really hard, made good money and got a “real job” I’d be all set for life.

Only problem? I was listening to everyone else, except the most important person: myself. Rather than listen to my heart & keep the whole “In think I can” mentality, I allowed others to constantly tell me I “can’t,” I’m crazy and that my big dream, entrepreneurial ways are “not the way to make money.”

But is there more to life than that? I have a tiny voice is my head saying there is… and I’m willing to take the risk and get super vulnerable to find out.

The other week, I gave my notice at my “real” big girl job (with salary and benefits and the whole sha-bang!) to pursue my dreams in working for myself again. The thing is: I loved my job, I adored my coworkers, and on most days I considered myself quite lucky. However, it quickly became my life & I was literally living to work. It’s almost like I was consumed by it, and I just couldn’t put it down.

When I took some time + got real with my emotions, it was clear to me that I had to let go…I had to trust in the universe a little.

I’m not saying there is anything wrong with that way of thinking…more power to the 9-to-5ers and those who’ve found work they truly love! But for me, it just never felt quite right (even when I actually landed my “dream job.”)

During this exciting (and anxiety-ridden!) transition, I was given the opportunity to preview the documentary “A Small Good Thing” by Pamela Tanner Boll.  With tears in my eyes and my heart wide open (aka I was an emotional mess) I decided to pop it on one cozy evening to watch with my husband. After all, what did I have to lose?

Wow. All I can say is wow. Talk about good timing!

The 70-minute film is set in the breathtaking Berkshires, and follows the unique story of five people who have chosen a “simpler” path to life: a yogi, a social work student, a farmer, a community activist, and a beautiful couple raising their family on a farm. It takes you on a journey from start to finish, flashing back and forth between the stories highlighting their personal way of living + “day in the life” sort of speak.

The whole premise of the film is that in a material world where everyone feels the need to follow the “American Dream,” there is indeed another way to do it. (Oh, and make enough money to get by too.) The experts discuss that while our standard of living has improved over the past few decades, unfortunately our happiness levels have indeed plummeted.

My favorite part was the story following a husband and wife duo — Jen and Pete Salinetti — who live on a farm as way to connect with the community + make a living doing it too. Maybe they aren’t millionaires…but they are happy. Maybe their kids don’t have ALL the toys…but they are overflowing with joy + a zest for life. Maybe they don’t shop at Whole Foods and fancy boutiques daily, but they are full with an abundance of love (and farm-fresh food waiting for them at the table). Maybe they don’t work stressful, long hours in an office…but they are changing the world one day at a time.

Maybe less really is more…and there is more meaning to this crazy, beautiful life of ours.

After watching the film, I went to bed feeling incredibly moved, inspired and a sense of comfort. It was almost like a little voice was telling me, “Hey Rach, it’s all going to be OK.” Simply put, those people were “my people” and it totally spoke my language…big time. (Just watch the trailer and you’ll see what I mean!)

I truly don’t know where this next chapter in my life will take me, and I’m slowly becoming more & more OK with that. In the meantime, A Small Good Thing gave me that extra reassurance and boost of confidence.

What I do know for sure: I’ll write a heck of a lot and will probably go ahead and finally self-publish that book that’s been on my vision board for years. Maybe I’ll kick off this new journey with a retreat to Kripalu in the Berkshires to simply get a way + “digital detox.” And there will most definitely be a lot more laughs + love with my husband.

The rest is still uncertain, but I do know I’ll be living hard…and that to me is priceless.

P.S. Want to get your hands (er, eyes) on A Small Good Thing? You’re in luck. It’s playing next weekend Sunday May 31st at the Berkshire International Film Festival. Snag your tickets here! (Trust me, it’s worth the $12 + so much more!)

XoXo,

Rachel…

Gratitude + Thanks: Reflections on 2014

Read full article | 1 Comment

As the holiday season unwinds, I realize I have many gifts to be thankful for — both the physical and the little blessings that are only felt by the heart. But perhaps the greatest gift of all is that of gratitude.

It’s a gift for yourself, and no one can take that away from you.

When you’re feeling particularly low, down or lonely, gratitude may be one of the only things that can pick you right back up. It’s like a gentle nudge of affection, telling you “Hey, it’s all going to be OK.” And with the snap of a finger, your day can take a complete 180 with the simple expression of gratitude. It’s that powerful.

Gratitude forces you to shift your perspective, to stop, pause and appreciate what it is you have to be thankful for. It helps you open up your eyes and honor the present. It fills you up with love. It gives you hope even when hope seems far away.

So as 2014 comes to an end, I’d like to take a moment and reflect upon what it is I have to be grateful for this year, and I urge you to do the same!

1. Marrying my brand new husband and love of my life Jason!

2. Being published in Indie Chick Magazine’s first ever print edition in January of 2014

3. The peace + clarity I feel when stepping onto my yoga mat.

4. Red wine after a long day.

5. Sushi date-nights

6. Having the opportunity to be New Balance’s blogger ambassador for their Girls Night Out campaign during the summer!

7. My one + only sister Krista who was the best maid of honor a gal could ask for

8. Best friends

9. Essential oils

10. Meditation

11. My blog readers + fans + all the kind emails and messages I receive from all of you

12. My mom + dad who stand by me through thick and thin, and pretty much singlehandedly planned our wedding!

13. My job at sweetgreen, especially the incredible people I’ve been blessed to meet along the way!

14. All the beautiful people in our lives, especially those who came out to celebrate our wedding day.

15. Our magical honeymoon to Hawaii

16. Coffee. Enough said.

17. Laughter

18. My man’s tacos, stir-fries, frittatas and roasted chicken

19. My health.

20. Good days + bad days…especially good days but bad days for appreciating the good days even more

21. yogi tea

22. Finding feathers in little secret places as a reminder that my grandmother is looking after me

23. My ability to run… and completing my 4th half marathon this year in Newport

24. My grandparent’s especially Grandma Mary’s pierogies and Grandpa John’s honey + stories

25. mason jars

26. kale

27. Sunshine

28. The Beatles

29. Our first dance to Snow Outside by Dave Matthew’s Band, a moment I will never forget

30. New memories.

31. Old memories

32. Having Jason’s mother Patty there with us to celebrate our wedding day

33. Leg-warmers

34. Gluten free pizza

35. Sharing my love + knowledge of health and wellness with others

36. My body + good food, and the fact that neither controls or upsets me any more

37. Making other people happy

38. The little things

39. Late-night snuggles while catching up on Modern Family, Homeland + Shark Tank

40. Bear hugs

41. My writing

42. CHEESE.

43. Family trips to the condo up north

44. Love that surrounds me daily

45. Happiness, family + all the other beautiful things in life

What are you grateful for this year? Write it down. Say it out loud. Share it. Express your gratitude!

Happiness is all about you (and only you)

Read full article | 11 Comments

One of my favorite quotes (& one that I go back to often) is:

“The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind the scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.”  – Steve Furtick

Think about that for a second, and I mean really truly deeply think about it.

To me, it’s pretty much saying we’d be a whole lot more happy (and confident) if we simply quit comparing so darn much. Take Facebook for example. You’re having a crap day so you decide to go peruse social media (worst decision ever). Within seconds of logging in, you find that Susie just got the job of her dreams, Mary’s about to start her own business (the same business you wished you started 2 years ago), and Lisa lost 15 pounds with that new diet she’s been trying. Oh, and Jane got engaged. Great, well isn’t that just dandy, you think as you pour yourself another glass of red, tears streaming down your face.

But then again what do you expect when you’re comparing your shittiest of shit days to everyone else’s spotlight moments? You’re setting yourself up for the worst.

You see, happiness comes from the inside, and to be happy (I mean truly, genuinely happy) you and only you will ever know how that feels. It’s a feeling. It’s your feeling.

And my happiness does not = your happiness. That’s why when we compare our downs to someone else’s ups, we’re left feeling like crap. Because we’re looking outside of us, rather than the beautiful things that are sitting right before our eyes.

We need to open up our eyes, and look inside.  Easier said than done, I know.

That’s why I’ve decided to sign up for 100 Happy Days, a challenge with yourself to post one thing a day that makes you happy. The best part? It’s a challenge for YOU, and no one else and it can be as private or as public as you want it. One of my favorite “rules” is this: “It’s not a happiness competition or showing off contest. If you try to please/make others jealous via your pictures – you lose without even starting.” BAM!

Bonus: if you make it through all 100 days, they send you a little book full of your happy moments. How cool?

So today, March 2, 2014, I choose to start my 100-day journey to happiness. I’ll be sharing my photos + happy moments on instagram, Facebook and twitter if anyone would like to follow along!

Who would like to join me? It’s happy time!

Xoxo,

Rachel

Do you ever catch yourself comparing you lows with other’s highs? How can you begin to look internally to find true happiness?

A Pact to Myself: On Living More

Read full article | 18 Comments

As you may have noticed, I’ve been a bit quiet on the blog lately. No, it’s not because I’ve forgotten about you all nor love you any less; rather it has to do with a little pact I made with myself a few weeks ago to LIVE more.

Don’t get me wrong – I adore blogging & most definitely feel ALIVE & vibrant when I am writing (more on that in a bit). But there’s a fine line between pleasure writing and the feeling of HAVING to write, and I’ve been working on defining that line and setting some boundaries.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this pact to live MORE, and I think it goes back to my initial 2014 intention of making an impact. In order to truly make my mark, I need to stop trying so hard and start living…more.

Living more means stepping back and allowing life to happen, without focusing so much on the how’s, the what’s and the to dos.

Living more means taking two weeks off from blogging in order to find some mental clarity.

Living more means breaking the rules, “messing up” & not having a plan for everything.

Living more means doing something – anything – every day to bring you closer to your dreams.

Living more means being OK with the fact that your room looks like a pigsty if it in turn means spending precious time with beautiful friends who make you laugh.

Living more means being there (and I mean truly there) for your significant other even if you’re stressed, had an off day or are on a tight deadline.

Living more means asking yourself what your deepest core desires are, and shifting things around to better align yourself with those desires.

Living more means saying no to the things that don’t serve you and yes to the things that challenge you & light you up with passion. (After all, as my boss always says, “What you say no to defines you.”)

Living more means tossing your to-do list, self help book & “rules” and going by what feels right in the moment.

Living more means taking a day for you to do what you want, or going away to Florida with your best friend for 5 days with nothing to do but lay in the sunshine.

Living more means putting on that cute apron and cooking a homemade meal from scratch with no distractions but a glass of Cab & some soft music playing in the background.

In order to live more, you need to stop worrying so much about the “shoulda coulda woulda’s” & the” have to’s” and just be.

In my recent effort to live more during my Florida vacation, I have crafted a new to do list that better suits the way I want to be living, with of course “live more” as #1.

Not your typical to do list, now is it? If you asked me a year ago at the top of my to do list would be to get a fulltime job, make more money, perhaps lose a few pounds, and finally write that book. Sounds pretty darn overwhelming, huh?

I don’t know about you but that kind of to-do list scares the crap out of me & comes with a great deal of pressure. Go after goal, don’t make goal, feel like a complete failure OR go after goal, make goal, feel sorta empty & unsatisfied wanting MORE. The thing is we always want MORE. It’s a lose lose situation.

And so there enters my redefined to-do list.

Writing daily seems much more gratifying (and doable) then “writing a book.” Taking time to unplug sounds more peaceful than getting a better job. Making time for play beats losing 5 pounds any day. And leaving some things up to the universe totally trumps making more money.

Living more is the answer. Stressing & fighting and forcing IT to happen (whatever it may be) is not.

I will continue to share with you little ways I choose to live more as I embark on my new journey, but to start I plan to take a heck of a lot more time for myself & spend a heck if a lot less time on the Internet.

I will still blog, I will still write, I will still coach. but not at the expense of me living my life anything less than the fullest. After all, to be there for others you need to be there for yourself first.

I’ll be perfectly honest with you: I am no expert at living more but I am willing to try, to start somewhere. We all need to start somewhere. That’s what it’s all about after all.

Xoxo,

Rachel

How can you live more? What does living more mean to you? What’s at the top of your re-defined to-do list?

20 Ways to Conquer The Winter Blues

Read full article | 2 Comments

Winter blues got you down? Between colds & flu to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), sometimes you just want to curl up in a dark hole (your bed) and throw yourself a pity party. If feeling bummed out is becoming your daily norm, don’t you fear! You just need some good ol’ fashioned pick-me-ups to get  you back on your Winter A-Game ASAP.

Here are 20 ways to snap out of the winter blues starting right now!

1. Get some sunshine (or a Vitamin D supplement): Yes, it’s true – sunshine really does make you happy! Even though it’s cold out, make it a point to get outside every day so you can soak up some happiness for yourself. Also, check in with your doctor regarding your Vitamin D levels; many of us fellow north-easterners struggle with low levels throughout the winter which can contribute to the sluggishness and general “blah” feeling.

2. Take a Cat Nap: Naps aren’t just for tots, after all! Our bodies need more rest and warmth during the winter, so there’s definitely no shame in taking an afternoon cap nat, that is if it’s not at your office desk! Aim to get enough sleep for your body, and know what works for you.

3. Start Watching a New TV Series: Start watching a feel-good television series with your roomies to heighten your moods! Whether it’s The Bachelor or reruns of Friends, choose something lighthearted that will bring out the giggles. The Boy and I have recently started watching old episodes of The Wonder Years. It’s just as good as it was 15 years ago.

4. Sip On Some Tea: Make yourself a cup of soothing herbal tea to warm you up inside. My wintertime favorites are Ginger, Chamomile and Lavender. I absolutely love Yogi Tea, as their little feel-good messages on the tea bags make my day every time.

5. Meditate on It: Start & end your day with some meditation to get clear about your intentions and feelings. Not quite sure where to start? You’re in luck! My girl Heather Waxman just released her first ever meditation album “Soul Sessions,” offering easy-to-follow guided meditations combined with her lovely voice singing to you. I can’t think of anything better.

Also consider experimenting with essential oils; grapefruit & lemon are especially uplifting!

6.  Know Your Humming Foods: Get to know the foods that make you feel your very best inside & out (those that “hum” to you) and then those foods that make you feel like crap (those that suck from you). What you eat has LOTS to do with how you feel. Learn how to get clear about these foods over on this post here!

7. Find The Exercise That Makes You Shine: Are you dragging your butt to the gym to run on the elliptical every darn night, inside thinking “I hate this!” “Why am I doing this anyway?!” It’s because this particular exercise just isn’t for you. Go ahead & explore ways to move that make you feel your BEST SELF EVER. Maybe it’s rocking out with a zumba dance party. Perhaps it’s developing a yoga practice or trying that barre class for the first time. Whatever it may be, find what works for YOU.

8. Love Yourself: Self-love is the most important kind of love in my book. If you’ve been looking outward to feel love (from other people, places or things), take a step back to look within. How can you love yourself more fully? To start, make a list of the top 10 things you like about yourself. Then keep this list in your purse or by your desk to peak at when you’re feeling particularly low.

9. Pick up a New Hobby: Always wanted to be a photographer? Take out a camera and start taking some photography lessons! Is Martha Stewart your cooking idol? Get out that apron & start baking away, baby! Find a new hobby that both inspires & challenges you, and I assure you’ll start feeling better in no time.

10. Set Your Intention for 2014: If New Year’s resolutions are stressing you out & making you want to punch people in the face, forget ’em! This year, rather than aiming to lose 10 pounds again, set an intention that is near & dear to your heart.

11. Make a Vision Board: Speaking of intentions, if you’re feeling lost & confused in life perhaps you just need to get clearer about your visions. Whip out some old magazines and a large poster board or construction paper and start visioning away. Nothing is off limits! What do you want to see more of in your life? Take a look at my Super-sized Vision Board from 2012.

12. Make a Feel-Good Playlist: Create a feel-good playlist for bluesy days! I love using Spotify to make different “albums” for different days: I have one for chilling out, one for pumping me up and several full of my fave bands. What’s on your list?

13. Hit The Mountains: There’s nothing that makes me feel quite as good as escaping to the mountains & being one with nature. Take a ski trip with your girlfriends, or give snow-shoeing a try on a weekend! Hey, may as well take advantage of this chilly weather while it lasts.

14. Cook Up Some (Healthy) Comfort Food: Whip up some healthy comfort food for you & your loved ones. Think casseroles and crockpot meals! Here’s a list from Greatist of 31 Classic Comfort Food Recipes Made Healthy to get you started. Warm, cozy foods make us feel good inside. There’s no question about it.

15. Host a Game Night: Host a game night at your place. All you need is a little Cranium, Battle of The Sexes, Pictionary, your best friends, and some wine & cheese, and it’s ON!

16. Clear Out Your Closet: Give away old clothes that don’t fit (or don’t fit your style anymore) to make room for the new. Then take yourself on a solo shopping spree, obvi!

17. Plan a Girls Night Out: When was the last time you & your girls went out…just the girls? If it’s been a while, consider planning a girls night out to celebrate your friendship! It can be a night out at the bar, a fancy dinner or even an evening in with good movies and takeout. In February, my girlfriends & I are taking a trip to sunny FL to spend some time on the beach!

18. Step On Your Yoga Mat: Yoga makes you feel better about yourself (inside & out). Do more yoga. Enough said.

19. Heat Things Up In Your Love Life: Does your relationship need a little makeover? Heat things up at home & get those sparks flying again! Kiss more. Love more. Bring on the passion.

20. Amp Up The Self Care: Make sure you are taking time for YOU & taking care of yourself. Self-care is one of the most important pieces to health & wellness. Treat yourself to a massage or simply take 30 minutes a day for you & only you.

Do you suffer from the winter blues? How do you beat ’em?

{Our Story} How The Boy Popped The Question

Read full article | 17 Comments

For those of you who don’t yet know, yesterday something incredibly magical and life-changing happened for me: The Boy & I got engaged. And for those of you who don’t know, The Boy’s real name? Jason. Let’s call him “J.”

And now for the million-dollar question, How did he do it? Well ladies (and gents), I’m about to tell you…

On Friday evening we were out in Rockport celebrating our beautiful friends Ross and Megan’s wedding. While we were dancing (and perhaps after a tad too much wine), J asked me if I’d like to go for a run with him in the morning on the Charles before we took off for his mother’s 60th birthday celebration.

I immediately laughed at him and teased him for suddenly showing such interest in exercise. While he most definitely works out from time to time, usually I’m the one pushing we go on runs together more often. He snapped back at me that it’s only going to be fall for so long and we should take advantage of the weather while we can. So I agreed.

The next morning I woke up exhausted and somewhat hungover. J was no longer in bed, so I went to look for him and found him stretching in the living room. “Ready for our run baby? I already brewed the coffee!’

With eyes half shut and hair in my face, I told him he was crazy and that I’d rather go back to bed. But after a bite to eat and some coffee, suddenly a river run was sounding quite enticing.

So we set out for our Saturday morning run…together…both not feeling 100% but forging through. I noticed when we just crossed over to the Charles that J had his hand in his pocket a couple times & some suspicion set in but I brushed it off and thought, “No way…you’re just over-thinking things again Rachel!”

As we came around the small bridge bringing us closer to the water, J tripped and took a major digger. “Ouch, my ankle!” “Are you OK?” I replied back as I continued to jog in place. And he just kept shouting “My ankle!” Then he said “My wrist, I mean my ankle!”

So I walked a little closer to him, and he grabbed my hands, got down on one knee and told me he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. Then he popped the question…right there in front of my favorite weeping willow tree on the Charles River…overlooking Boston. The city we love. The city that brought us together. He had been waiting to take me to that tree until he proposed.

I said yes.

Runners passing by began shouting and cheering for us as we embraced under my special spot. It was absolutely perfect, more than I ever dreamed of it to be.

The most special part of the story is that he proposed on his mother’s birthday, who for those of you who don’t know has been coping with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease for several years now. This year, her husband (J’s step-father) threw a beautiful party for her to celebrate her 60th birthday among 120+ friends and family.

To be there with her, sharing the beautiful day with so much laughter, love and good food, was more than I could ever ask for.

Feeling so much love & joy right about now.

What Do You Truly Want…and Why?

Read full article | 2 Comments

As I mentioned in yesterday’s newsletter I’ve been doing a lot of soul-searching lately in order to explore my spirituality (especially when it comes to those old money fears that tend to creep up every so often).

I was recently recommended the book “Leveraging the Universe” by Mike Dooley and since I’m always up for a good read I ordered it on Amazon right away. I’ve been reading a few pages every day before bed/whenever I get some down time so I can truly savor it without rushing through.

This morning at the coffee shop I read through the chapter on “Charting your course” and the author had us answer the question, “What do I want?” Not what should you want. Not what should you do. Not what should you be when you grow up. Just what you want / what you truly want to do. Pure and simple.

I honestly had never thought of that question in such a simple way. Instead, I always clog it up with dozens of questions like “But how will I get there?” “But what do you mean?” “Like in real life or fantasy life?” “By when?” In reality, when you push all questions and fears aside, stating what you want really couldn’t get more simple.

I want to have fun while I work.

I want a financially successful & abundant business.

I want to (eventually) marry the love of my life.

I want to feel OK about treating myself to a massage (or one too many trips to Whole Foods) every month.

I want to travel, meet new people & experience the world.

I want to launch a live group program this fall.

I want to publish my e-book by 2014 (hopefully the end of 2013).

I want to inspire women to change & transform their lives for the better.

I want to live happily ever after.

– – –

You see how simple it can be when you really stop & ask yourself what you truly want?

Whenever I meet with a client for the first time, I always ask them what they’d wish for if I could wave a magic wand over their life and give them anything, and I mean anything, they wanted. It’s usually something like “Lose 10 pounds,” “Fall in love,” “Be OK with wearing a bikini in public” or something along those lines.

I then ask the 5 million dollar question, “WHY?” that which always follows with a long pause, some hmms and sometimes even a few tears. You see, getting clear about what you want (i.e. setting an intention) is an important step, don’t get me wrong, but the Why’s are where the big breakthroughs happen.

Do you want to lose 10 pounds or do you want to feel nourished, alive and energized? Do you want to meet Mr. Perfect or do you want to fall in love with yourself? Do you want to rock a bikini in public or do you want to feel sexy & free in your body?

So go ahead and ask yourself what it is you truly want…and then go a little deeper and ask yourself WHY.

Looking to get “unstuck” & fall back in love with your body (inside and out)? Let’s talk! I’d love to schedule a FREE 15-minute Body Love Breakthrough Session with you! Check out my schedule for available appointments.

Book my Body Love Breakthrough Session Now!

The Beauty of Slowing Down

Read full article | 6 Comments

I live a very fast-paced, go-go-go, give it my all, “you can sleep when you’re dead” lifestyle most of the time (as I assume most blossoming entrepreneurs do.) It’s full of passion, excitement, life and color! Staying up late letting the creative juices flow…parking it at coffee shops for the day to hit last-minute deadlines…taking chances…booking meetings…picking up the phone…showing up…saying “Yes.”

I won’t lie: while it’s wildly inspiring and entertaining sometimes it can be plain exhausting. Exhausting to the point of burn out, fatigue and “enough.” Does that mean I’m not cut out for it? Not one bit.

You see, what I realized lately is that you don’t have to pick one or the other: the “play it safe” unplugged life or the fast ‘n’ furious audacious life. Rather, they can play off each other and you can have the best of both worlds. You can create your perfect blend.

How? By slowing down (when you need to). It’s wonderful to live a life full of wild excitement, but if you suddenly get too wrapped up in being “on” all the time, that may be a sign that it’s time for you to slow down, take a break and unwind.

Ever since I created my “Stop Doing List” a few weeks ago, I’ve been able to slow things down while still satisfying my entrepreneurial needs. By doing so, I’ve also kept burnout, stress, frustration and limiting beliefs to a bear minimum as well.

Slowing down does not make you “weak” or lazy. Rather it makes you show up as a more clear-headed, powerful, open-minded, inspired version of YOU. And that’s where the beauty is.

Here are some of my favorite ways to slow down when I catch myself moving too fast:

  • Road trips with The Boy (belting out our fave tunes & letting my hair flow in the wind)
  • Getting away from the city for the weekend (We’re just getting back from a quick trip to Cooperstown, NY to visit The Boy’s family, and we also like to escape to Fisher’s Island to visit my grandparents and New Hampshire to stay at my family’s condo)
  • Cooking a home-made meal & taking my time with it (with an apron on)
  • Sipping on Yogi tea (especially reading my lil fortune)
  • Unplugging…for multiple hours at at time
  • Walking instead of running
  • Enjoying a meal in silence (focusing on the smell, the taste & the texture of the food)
  • Breathing (& sometimes meditating)
  • Putting pen to paper for some good, ol’ fashioned free writing
  • Zoning out to good music with bands like The Shine, Of Monsters and Men, and Ingrid Michaelson
  • Going to bed early & sleeping in
  • Sex & The City Marathons. All night.
  • Treating myself to a facial or massage. Even if it’s a homemade facial & begging The Boy
  • Being with family

What are your favorite ways to slow down?

Monday Inspiration: On Starting Over

Read full article | 4 Comments

I used to think that starting over was impossible — it seemed completely out of my reach.

If I over-indulged for a weekend in college, I’d punish myself for being “bad” and “ruining” my diet by starving myself and stuffing my face with sugar-free, low-cal crap.

And if I made a mistake, chose the wrong path or felt “stuck” in a life I didn’t love, I’d think there was nothing I could do about it. This is just how it is. It’s “too late.”

I now know it’s never too late to start over & create the life you want for yourself. With this new mindset, I’ve left jobs that didn’t feel right to me, let go of a toxic “relationship” that was draining me, broke up with the scale, and released the thoughts “I can’t.”

By doing so, I have found a career path that makes me stay up late at night feeling inspired, I know what real love feels like, I have developed a healthy & fun relationship with food and I now tell myself “I can do it” as much as possible.

You see, it truly is never too late. Your life is like a blank canvas, and it’s always a good time to give it some minor touch ups, add some color or give it a complete makeover.

How can you start over? What will you paint for yourself?

Do You Need to Re-think Your To-Do List?

Read full article | 4 Comments

Last week, I was meeting with one of my clients talking about goals, dreams and all that good stuff. I really like to get deep inside the eyes of my clients to find out what drives, motivates, and really lights them up. When we got to the part where we discussed any blockages or things getting in the way from living the life of her dreams, she simply said “My weight.” In fact, “Lose weight” was at the top of every to-do list she had ever created for herself.

I then asked her what she’d be doing, eating, living, seeing, being if her weight was not a factor in living the life of her dreams. I soon found out that not only was her weight holding her back from being comfortable in her clothing, but it was preventing her from doing things she truly loves like connecting with people on a deeper level, taking zumba classes and being truly happy in her own skin.

That right there was a huge wake up call, one that she needed to see. One that we all need to see every once and a while. So what did I have my client do? I had her re-write this to do list, only there was one catch: she wasn’t allowed to make any of her “to dos” and goals have anything to do with her weight. This took a lot of work…and courage on her part. We often don’t take the time to look within and ask ourselves what we truly want.

After doing this exercise with my client, I myself have been slowly by surely re-thinking my “to dos,” getting rid of the things that annoy & block me, while filling up on the things that make me light up and radiate with passion. Then yesterday I stumbled upon this interview with Danielle Laporte, one of my favorite tell-it-like-it-is motivational gurus.

In the interview, she recommends people to make a “Stop Doing” list. I had to think about this one for a second. And then after 3 seconds, I thought “Brilliant.” While I still have a way to go, here are 7 things I am putting on my “stop doing” list starting now.

1. Stop saying “yes” to people when you really want to say “no.”

2. Stop over-booking, over-working & putting everyone else before “me time.” Time to amp up the self-care baby!

3. Stop playing small & telling myself I am not “good enough.”

4. Stop hiding my amazing, creative ideas. Implement them! Take risks! DO IT!

5. Stop worrying & comparing, start doing & being!

6. Stop getting consumed by social media & block off times for creativity. It’s time to shut down when I say I’ll shut down. Write my ideas with a pen & a notebook.

7. Stop being a people-pleaser. You can’t (and won’t) please everyone. BE YOURSELF!

So there you have it. It’s OK to give yourself permission to stop doing the things that drain you (and suck from you) and start doing the things that make you radiate with passion like a beautiful fireworks show on the fourth of July. Do more of those things.

Do you need to re-think an old to-do list? What’s on your stop doing list?

 
Loading...
Get on my list to receive FREE weekly bursts of healthspiration from yours truly (+ my 10 A-Hah Moments)!