The intricate link between mind and body reveals itself in myriad ways. As a medical intuitive, I’ve witnessed this connection manifest through my clients’ physical ailments, which often reflect unresolved emotional conflicts. One such example involves a client who came to me with a decades-long struggle with asthma.
In our sessions together, my client’s belief came through that in order to be worthy of love, they must continually strive to be a “good” person. This meant habitually putting others’ needs first, stifling their own desires, and regularly checking in to make sure others were happy. Despite their kindhearted efforts, an underlying feeling persisted that they were never quite good enough.
Asthma can be seen as the body signalling that it is not receiving enough air, mirroring my client’s fear of never getting enough love. Though outwardly gentle and accommodating, internally they felt suffocated by the pressure to earn love and acceptance. Just as their lungs constricted during an asthma attack, their spirit felt constrained by perpetual self-judgment.
Through energy healing techniques, I encouraged my client’s body to release the notion that love must be earned through self-sacrifice. We cleared this belief system and replaced it with the awareness that our only job is to emanate love – to be compassionate and loving towards every person, creature, plant and any other living thing we meet.
It was a simple shift really, but powerful as hell – moving from “I’ll only be loved if I’m good enough” to “I emanate love, so love will find its way to me.” As this new perspective took root, not only did my client’s asthma begin to clear up, but their feeling of unworthiness around love also began to fade.
This shift was simple yet profound – from feeling like we need to do things in order to be good enough to be loved, to realizing that if we emanate love, we will draw love to us. Many of us walk around feeling like we are not enough in some way, believing we need to fix ourselves or be kinder or more loving to deserve affection in return. In fact, the reverse is true – the more we ground ourselves in the awareness that we are deserving of love just as we are, just as much as we were the first day we were born, the more we will feel love flowing to us in all its many forms. When you stop chasing love and start emanating it instead, you’ll draw your soul family to you like moths to a flame.
Like the air we breathe, love surrounds us as our birthright – needing no justification. By realigning with the truth that you are enough, just as you are, and emanating your unique essence through thoughts, words and actions steeped in love – watch the mind-body healing unfold.
How would your life change if from this day forward you believed that your only job was to emanate love? how would it feel to walk through the world this way? how would it feel to receive love from everywhere around you simply for being in this state? I’d love to know what comes up for you when you try this thought experiment!
A few years ago, I moved from the sunny beaches of Southern California to the cool forests of the Pacific Northwest. I know most of you will think that’s crazy, but I’ve found I do better in cooler environments.. Plus I loooove all the plants, water and greenery here. It feeds something in my soul. (Side note – I recently had a Mayan nawales astrological reading and was told I do best in cold forests and by lakes, which confirmed this was a good move for me!)
One of the challenges I knew I would have to face is the long, overcast winter here. It doesn’t get too cold, but we do have many, many months of short days and overcast skies with no sunlight in sight. A friend of mine here recommended this book on the Danish idea of Hyyge and it started me thinking about how to cultivate happiness in winter.
I think that most of us have a wide variety of things to do when the weather is sunny and warm that we associate with happiness. Hiking, swimming, picnicking with friends, going to the park with our dog and more. But what about in winter? Do you have a host of go-to activities that bring you happiness in the winter?
I made it my goal to create such a list of winter joy activities that are easy and cheap. I now make sure that I do at least two of these things each day so that I can avoid the doldrums of winter.
Here’s my list:
- Hot chocolate: Make your own, don’t use the powdered mix, because it’s exactly one-million percent better. I use 2 Tbs Trader Joe’s unsweetened cocoa powder, and mix with 1.5 Tbs sugar and about ¼ cup of any type of milk. Microwave for 30 seconds (just long enough for the milk to get hot) and then stir the sugar and cocoa into the milk. Fill the cup up to the top with milk, add a square or two of dark chocolate, and microwave again for 1-2 minutes, or until it gets to the temperature you like.
- Candles: You can never have enough candles in the winter. I like scented ones that make my whole living room smell of winter goodness like cinnamon, clove, balsam, and fir. I take a trip to Home Goods at the end of Autumn and stock up on enough yummy smelling candles to get me through the winter.
- Fairy or x-mas lights: Oh, the joy that a string of little white lights brings me. I put fairy lights in glass jars, string them up around my windows, and wind them up and around my plant stand. There’s something about those small, white lights that just feels joyful.
- Use your fireplace: If you have a fireplace, use it often! I’ve started lighting fires during the day while I’m doing my healing sessions and it’s so, so cozy. There’s something primal and comforting about the heat, sounds and sights of a fire.
- Mull something: Mulling spices can be added to wine, spirits or apple cider to make a delicious warm winter drink, but sometimes I just put some in water and simmer for a few hours. It makes my whole place smell amazing.
- Blankets, Blankets, Blankets: I have cozy, soft blankets on every chair, couch, and bed in my house. This one from Barefoot Dreams is my favorite but really anything soft and comforting will do. Also, pillows, pillows, pillows – same idea, make it comfy and cozy! Bonus if you have a dog or cat that will cuddle with you under the blanket.
- Intentionally scheduling connection time with friends and family: Research has shown that connecting with others is vitally important for our mental and physical health, but it’s easier in the warmer months to have moments of connection and conversation seamlessly when we’re out and about going about our day. In winter, when we spend more time inside, we need to be intentional about making sure we have those moments of connection and conversation throughout the week. I make sure to be a bit extra when it comes to scheduling phone conversations with friends and making dinner or coffee date plans with friends. I make more of an effort to chat with people in line at the market or at the dog park. Putting effort into connecting with others pays off, as even a small moment of delightful chit chat can make my day.
- Baking and cooking: Yes, I am starting and ending this list with food. I love to bake and cook, but don’t do so as much in the summer when it’s hot. In the winter, warming my house up with something in the oven or with a stew that’s simmering for hours seems like a much better idea. If you’re adventurous, make things from scratch. If not, buy a cake mix, some puff pastry dough, or a par-baked bread and throw it in the oven. (There’s nothing like warm buttered bread from the oven when it’s chilly out.)
I hope this helps spark some ideas for you to help get you through the winter months. And let me know what your winter joy activities are! I’m always looking to expand my list.
In various healing traditions, it’s believed that different parts of our body correspond to diverse emotional states. From the harmonious balance of the Yin and Yang in Chinese medicine to the holistic equilibrium of the three Doshas in Ayurvedic tradition, these ancient teachings have long highlighted the relationship between our physical and emotional selves. Today, let’s delve into the intriguing connection between two parts of our digestive system: the pancreas, often linked to over-planning and undue worry about the future, and the small intestine, associated with discernment – distinguishing what serves us from what doesn’t.
The pancreas, a vital organ, beckons us to the importance of living in the present. Responsible for both releasing essential hormones like insulin or glucagon and secreting digestive enzymes, its optimal functioning requires an acute awareness of the here and now. Yet, for many who are ensnared by the chains of future anxieties or the shadows of the past, the pancreas may act prematurely. Overactive pancreases might release an excess of digestive enzymes or prematurely discharge insulin or glucagon. In contrast, for those grounded in the present, the pancreas astutely observes what is ingested, producing the right balance of digestive enzymes. Similarly, insulin and glucagon production ideally should be a present-moment response to our body’s blood sugar levels.
The small intestine, our body’s center of discernment, can also bear the brunt of excessive worry. Acting as a gatekeeper, it discerns between nutrients to absorb and waste to eliminate. However, when one struggles with personal discernment, the small intestine might falter, leading to issues like inadequate nutrient absorption or even the onset of leaky gut syndrome. Discernment, in essence, is akin to maintaining healthy boundaries. It challenges us to ask: Do we recognize what truly aligns with our essence? Can we assertively decline what doesn’t resonate, making space for what genuinely nourishes our soul?
Our digestive quandaries could be reflections of deeper emotional challenges: excessive worry or an impaired sense of discernment. To begin to heal you must immerse yourself in the present, unhindered by past regrets or future anxieties. As life unfolds, continuously question – is this in harmony with my true self? Should I embrace this or make space for what truly resonates?
And if you find yourself seeking deeper insights into these interconnections, or need guidance to navigate them, don’t hesitate to reach out and book a consult call with me; let’s explore these dimensions together and chart a path to holistic well-being.
The week before last was a really hard one. On top of a very busy week with work and some challenging situations with clients, I found out a friend had passed away and someone else who’s like a father figure to me is declining fast with dementia and probably only has a few months left. By the end of the week, I was fried. I could feel how much I’d pushed my nervous system through to just make it to the weekend and how badly my nervous system needed some space and time to release and come back to a calm, balanced state.
I decided to plan a 2-day nervous system reset over the weekend, and it worked wonders. By the end of the two days, I felt calm, I had more energy reserves, and I had a more balanced perspective on all of the things going on in my life.
I want to share what I did over the course of 2 days to let my nervous system heal and reset. I share this with you knowing that I have a lot of privilege and not everyone can implement these strategies like I did, but I’ll share them in the hopes that you can make a version of this work for you.
Here’s what I did over two days to reset and heal my nervous system.
- Sleep-Centric Day 1: Day 1 was all about sleep. I let myself nap as much as I needed to. I woke up on Saturday around 7:30am, napped from 9-10am, napped from 2-3:30pm, napped from 5-6pm and then went to bed at 10:30pm.
- Meditation-Centric Day 2: Day 2 was all about meditation. I picked one meditation that I love and that feels relaxing and I did it on repeat throughout the day. I woke up and meditated before I even got out of bed. About 2 hours later I did it again. Throughout the rest of the day I meditated whenever it crossed my mind, probably 6 or 7 times throughout the day. I then did it one more time in bed before I went to sleep. Here’s the one I chose: https://youtu.be/XHvtIcaD194?si=FZCS60wAXA6p277b (I do love me some TNH!)
- Digital detox: I put all devices on do not disturb and only checked them once or twice a day. I also avoided TV or other entertainment media. I know that “relaxing” by scrolling social media is actually anything but relaxing for my nervous system. Social media and most entertainment programming are designed to interact with our brains and bodies to activate us and release dopamine and other activating neurotransmitters. I could also tell that I needed a break from communication –every time my phone chimed with a text or email, I could feel the overwhelm rise up in my body. My emotional cup was totally full and even friendly messages felt like too much for me. So, my phone went on DND and got stowed in a drawer so I couldn’t see the screen. If I did see a message, I asked myself if it was something that absolutely couldn’t wait 2 days for a reply. If it was something that did need a reply, I gave myself permission to write as simple and short of a reply as I could, even telling a few people I’d get back to them after the weekend.
- Engage in Joyful Activities: I only did activities that felt good to me. On day one, I did some laundry and picked up around the house a bit. On day two, I walked to the market to get ingredients for one of my favorite things to cook and took my dog to the park. If the thought of doing the activity caused me any feelings of stress or “should” then I didn’t do it, knowing that it would get done at some point, just not now. In between napping, meditating, and doing these few things I mostly read and listened to music, making sure to pick things that felt calming and joyful. Basically, I asked myself, “will this contribute to my peace, cam and joy?” and if the answer wasn’t a whole body “hell yes!”, then it was a no.
- Easy-to-Digest Diet: I ate one easy-to-digest food for the whole time. Digestion takes a ton of energy and our nervous systems are interwoven into our digestive systems. I wanted to make things as easy as possible for my body, so I bought a big bag of organic yellow potatoes and ate boiled potatoes with salt and butter for the whole first day and until dinner the second day, when I made one of my favorite nourishing meals. I also made a point of drinking lots of water throughout the day. This step isn’t for everyone – I tend to have a small appetite and it feels good to do this every now and again, but if this feels like it would be a stressor on your body, don’t do it! Trust your intuition on this one.
Our bodies inherently seek equilibrium, but occasionally we must intentionally afford them the recovery time. This 2-day plan will give your body the space, time and care it needs to do just that. If you decide to try it, I’d love to know your experience!
There is mounting research showing the massive effect on our health of a well-balanced psychosocial ecosystem. A psychosocial ecosystem includes things like our roles, our social connections, and our daily routines. If we are feeling stress or imbalance in any of these areas, it hampers healing, especially of chronic conditions. Let’s look at these three areas and how they impact our health and bodymind.
Our roles are the “parts” we play in our lives. If you think about the credits at the end of a movie where it says “mother” or “bank teller” and then lists the actors’ names, this is like the roles we play in our lives. We all have multiple roles, like “friend”, “daughter”, “co-worker”, “employee”, “crafter”, “film buff” and many more. Each of these roles brings some sort of meaning to our lives and each of them is fulfilling in a different way (some more than others!) The key is to look at where the stress lies. Which of these roles are stressful? Are there any of these roles that we simply hate? If there are roles that are causing you stress or unhappiness, then it’s important to look at how to modify them or get rid of them all together. For example, if being a “daughter” is stressful because your parents are toxic, how can you lessen the time and energy you spend on being with them? How do you lessen the role of “daughter”? However, if a role brings you calm and joy, then look at how you can increase that role in your life. For example, if your favorite part of your job is being a “co-worker”, how can you increase opportunities to interact with others at work?
Social connections are the people we have in our life. This could be family, friends, co-workers, pickleball buddies, online gaming friends, or our favorite waiter at that restaurant we go to – anyone who you know and have some sort of connection to. It’s been shown many times over that the quantity AND quality of these connections is incredibly important for our health. So, even if you don’t feel like you have a ton of good quality relationships right now, you can start chatting with folks at the dog park or in line at the store and even that will have beneficial effects, as the quantity and quality of social interactions are both health-promoting. When you make that connection with another person, even a short interaction, it starts a cascade of healing chemicals in your body that positively affect your nervous system, immune system, mood, and more.
Our bodyminds love routines because they love familiar things. We love to feel the calm predictability of something that we know is going to work out in the same way it did before. Bonus points if we know it’s something that will make us happy or fulfilled. Routines can range from where we drink our morning coffee or tea to what aisles we go down first in the supermarket to our daily yoga or meditation practice. When our routines get thrown off, we often become stressed because we don’t know exactly how things will unfold. So take a look at your daily routines at home and at work. Which ones bring you joy? What is it about them that makes you happy? Can you bring more of that into your life? And if there’s some part of your day that seems to feel chaotic or unpredictable, can you bring a routine to it so that it feels more predictable (and therefore less stressful)?
Where can you make some changes to your roles, social connectivity and routines in your life? Remember to start small and build from there, even small changes can make a big difference over time and we only start making bigger changes by starting small, getting positive feedback, and then wanting more.
What one thing can you change today?
Earlier this week, a video made the rounds on TikTok of Lillie, a 13-year-old getting arrested at an abortion rights protest because she used a megaphone and violated a noise ordinance. The video made a splash not only for the fact the police are arresting 13-year-olds for protesting (Hello, first amendment right to assemble and protest?!) but for Lillie’s mom who was filming and can be heard in the background.
As Lillie’s being taken into custody, we can hear her mom, Lauren, who is following just behind her say, “Lillie don’t resist honey, it’s okay. I got ya. Lillie, you’re okay bug. I got you. Mom’s right behind you!!”
So many of the comments on the video talked about Lauren’s words of support:
The “I’m right behind you” is what broke me 😭😭😭
If that isn’t the most public display of MOM I’ve ever seen. Way to go momma.
The pride in mamas voice and the “I’m right behind you!” Oh my gods 😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭 STAY STRONG BABYYYYYYYY!!! 💪🏾💪🏾💪🏾💪🏾💪🏾✊🏾✊🏾✊🏾
“Just don’t resist” “I’m right behind you” wrecked me 😭😭😓
And I have to admit, this video broke me, too. I’ve watched it a bunch of times in preparation for writing this post and I still find myself in tears each time I watch.
So, what’s going on here?
I’m crying not because she was arrested (in fact, that makes me angry, not sad) it’s the idea of having a mom who would be so supportive and say such reassuring, loving things in a time of crisis.
I never had that, and I know a lot of you never had that too.
I know for me, when I see scenes of moms being loving, kind and supportive, there’s a part of me that’s reminded of my loss. It’s grief for the emotional nutrients I know I needed, but never got. Just like a starving person might break down at the sight of an all-you-can-eat buffet, those of us who had emotional neglect or abuse will also break down at the sight of emotional sustenance.
However, my friends, there’s a way to turn that grief into a powerful tool for healing.
When I see something like this that “breaks me” and find myself crying big time, that’s a signal. It’s a sign – here’s an emotional nutrient that I really need.
This is what I do when I see examples of loving parenting and it makes me cry:
- Sit with the sadness. This is another chance for grief to come up and be acknowledged, so let it come and meet it with tenderness and validation.
- Recognize that this type of emotional care is something you need. Be grateful that you found this out, because now you can give yourself this exact, wonderful type of care.
- Internalize this voice of support. I talk about this in my post on your inner caregiver if you need more info on how to do this. For me, the line, “Mom’s right behind you!!” especially with Lauren’s tone and emotionality was the thing that really hit me hard. I’m adding this to my repertoire of supportive messages and Lillie’s mom is now another one of my inner moms, I can hear her voice saying just this, right when I’m going through something scary and hard.
Once you’ve gathered a few of these inner caregiver voices, they act as powerful tools to use when times are tough. Or even when they’re not, I know we all need to hear “Mom’s right behind you!!” as we go about our lives, because adulting is hard, amiright?