Are You Investing In Your Intimate Time?

The other day I was reading a page from Meditations for Women Who Do Too Much by Anne Wilson Schaef and this gold nugget leaped out at me:

Intimacy with ourselves takes time. We need time for rest, time for walks, time for quiet, and time to    tune in to ourselves. We cannot completely fill up our lives with activities and become intimate with ourselves.

We are in the middle of winter… known in traditional Chinese medicine as the most yin time of year, a time for stillness and introspection. Right now, on the East Coast, and especially here in the mid-Atlantic, it seems Mother Nature is enforcing this wisdom: we just had a blizzard that shut down Maryland and D.C. for a three-day weekend!
So the question is – what do you do about it? A New York Times op-ed by David Dudley had an inspired answer:

The snow cares not for your deadlines, your happy hour plans, your scheduled C-section. It wants only to fall on the ground and lie there. And it wants you to, too.

Needless to say, you should. Unless you’re a plow driver or a parka-clad elected official trying to look essential, one doesn’t pretend to do battle against a blizzard. You submit. Surrender. Hunker down. A snowstorm rewards indolence and punishes the go-getters, which is only one of the many reasons it’s the best natural disaster there is.

And as a Real-Life Superwoman, you’re probably getting cabin fever at the very thought – right? Trust me, I know – the enforced stillness of winter can be a fiercely challenging time for us Superwomen! With our strong yang energy, we are all about doing and getting things done. We don’t have time to slow down and go within. Why would anyone want to do that?

For many years I was resistant to slowing down at winter. I was resistant to allowing space and time to become intimate with the workings of my soul. I felt slowing down meant I was lazy: after all, I had things to do and people to see! And even deeper than that: I was afraid of what I might find if I took the time to just be, without all the doing-doing-doing that defined me in the world. What if I uncovered the thoughts of not feeling enough, the thoughts of anger and resentment toward family and friends because I was the one who always got things done? I was the one who planned things, but what was really going on under all the festivity?

Bottom line – I was afraid to be vulnerable. I was afraid to ask for help. Did you ever see Wonder Woman ask for help?? I was locked in a vicious cycle of insisting I could do it all…while secretly feeling overwhelmed and wanting someone to care for me….and being unable to trust that they would. No wonder I didn’t want to be still and go within!

It’s taken several years – and a lot of inner work and healing – but now, I have learned to appreciate this time of year. I actually look forward to slowing down, to reflecting and releasing what no longer serves me. I spend 30 minutes each day in stillness and the beauty that I have discovered by doing so. Being Intimate with your soul is much more than getting a manicure or pedicure or massage. Now don’t get me wrong – those things are very important! But at the deepest level soul intimacy is about spending quiet time with yourself in the presence of God/The Divine/The Universe, and allowing the true you to emerge.

Yes – the true you, with all the thoughts and feelings, the psychological/spiritual lumps and bumps and warts and wounds, knowing that it is all good. You are whole, perfect and complete, every bit of you.
Take some time this week for intimacy with your soul. When you are still, what do you see about you? I know this can be scary and push you outside your comfort zone, but that is where the magic happens.

Surprisingly, as we become intimate with our own souls, we discover our connection with others and with the Divine. Neither is possible without that deep soul-intimacy.

Tell me – as a Real-Life Superwoman, do you have challenges with stillness and becoming intimate with your soul? I can support you with giving yourself permission to put down that superwoman cape and recognizing your are enough. Schedule a 45 minute strategy session today

Book Session

Experience the Releasing Power of Grandmother Moon!

In the city and suburbs, it’s often hard to see the stars as our grandmothers and great-grandmothers did. But one celestial body that overcomes light pollution is the Moon… as the Native Americans used to call her, Grandmother Moon, who rules the ebb and flow of women’s cycles.

And according to The Oregonian, the coming full moon will be unique for this year:

“The full moon of September, which is called the Harvest Moon, will be the closest and largest full moon of 2015. The moon will not be this close again until the full moon of Nov. 14, 2016. Because it will be eclipsed, you will have to wait until the next night to get the effect of watching a supermoon. Or look for it the night before.”

As a Busy Professional, On The Go Woman, I have found that new and full moon rituals help to keep me focused, grounded and in harmony.

I started adding these to my spiritual practice last year after discovering two amazing mentors,  Anne Ripley and Jana Matthews, author of Manifesting with the Moon.

While these teachers don’t follow any particular spiritual tradition, they have adapted elements of indigenous traditions and New Thought practices to create their unique rituals for manifesting and mind/body/spirit balance.

I have used the suggestions of these two women and have put together my own Full Moon Ritual. According to Anne Ribley, the Full Moon is all about releasing what doesn’t serve…and here is the ritual of release that I have created.

  1. I put a couple of drops of essential oils on my hand. I use an essential oil that has a releasing energy to it. Some essential oils that you can use for this particular full moon are at this time are lime, ginger, and frankincense.Some other oils that you an use at any full moon to help release are lavender, bergamot and roman chamomile. Inhale the aroma, deeply…once…twice…
  2. Write down all the things that no longer serve you, and that you would like to release over the next month. For me it’s usually an aspect of myself I want to release. In the past it’s been the scarcity mindset, worry and overwhelm.
  3. Burn the piece of paper in a fireplace, sink or cast-iron pot….and please make sure you do this safely! The safest way to do this is to take the container outside. I had an incident at the beginning of the year where I wrote down all the things I wanted to release as well as all the things I was angry about. I put it in the fireplace and about 20 minutes later my husband asked why there was so much smoke in the living room. Well – apparently I did not open the vent of the fireplace, and the smoke was filling the entire lower half of our house! It was very symbolic of how my anger lingered on and if I didn’t release it, it would choke me as well as the ones I love.
  4. Light your match, set it to the paper, and say Release or Be Gone as the paper burns.
  5. State what you want to replace it with. I know for me when I release overwhelm I want to replace it with peace and ease.
  6. Surrender the smoke to Spirit, and (only if you’re outside and the fire is safely contained in an unbreakable container) go inside to let the paper burn itself out.

If you’d like to explore established spiritual traditions that include rituals based on earth cycles and astronomical/astrological events, you may want to look into the work of these women:

Blessed be!


Listen to the Lessons of Your Body During National Yoga Month!

One of the lessons I love to share with my clients is the many ways in which our bodies are our teachers. And nothing – but nothing! – has proven this to me more than yoga.

So I am eager to celebrate National Yoga Month by sharing some of the benefits I have experienced through yoga…benefits that you can experience, too!

I remember my first yoga lesson, with its slow, flowing, meditative moves, more than 15 years ago….what a culture shock! I must confess – I did not enjoy it. How could this be exercise, I wondered? Ah well – I was younger in those days, in my twenties, and I was drawn to classes that were fast moving, like aerobic classes. Also when I did inversion poses, like Downward Facing Dog, I felt dizzy. All in all, it wasn’t a great experience, and I wasn’t impressed by my exposure to yoga.

Then, about nine years ago, I discovered hot yoga classes and really stated to appreciate the benefits of this powerful mind/body practice. Most of all, yoga has helped this On The Go Woman to relax and get out of my head and into my body.

During a hot yoga class I would think to myself – what on earth am I doing here? What possessed me to do this to myself – and how am I going to get through it? Yet. I always managed to make it through, and in fact emerged from a hot yoga class feeling energized and clear, as if I’d released deep toxins from my system.

Was it the driven competitiveness of a Superwoman that brought me through each class? Perhaps…but in yoga I learned that it is not about being competitive. Instead, it’s about accepting yourself where you are, without comparing yourself to others in the class. What a powerful lesson, not only for the yoga classroom but also for life…and it was only one of many; for example

me doing yoga


  • Ability to stand solid in Tree Pose relates to the degree of balance you have in your mind and body that day.
  • Resistance to Downward Facing Dog is related to resistance to letting go and enjoying the moment.
  • Challenges in doing a Backbend or Bow Pose (which still challenge me) indicates difficulty in letting go of perfection

What does a Backbend have to do with letting go of perfection? According to Yoga teacher-trainer George Watts, a backbend exposes your chest, leaving your heart vulnerable and open. It demands that you reach deep into your courage, giving up fear and reflexive self-protection and shutdown to stretch more deeply into the pose.  If you try to stay in control while you move into a backbend, your shoulders tense and your chest closes. You just can’t have it both ways! So backbends are a great way for perfectionists to let go, open our chests, and start breathing in self-acceptance, joy, and fun.

Hip-opening poses like the Bound Angle pose and Cow Face pose are great for activating the sacral chakra, as well as helping you to release stuck emotions. Another hip-opening asana, Pigeon Pose, helps to reduce the noise of your thoughts, allowing you to use your silent mind to renew yourself in gratitude and peace.

There are many types of yoga; these are just a few:

  • Hatha Yoga – combines poses with breathing practices. Generally calming and renewing, the best type for beginners.
  • Iyengar Yoga – emphasizes alignment and positioning with supports, and can relieve chronic pain.
  • Vinyasa Yoga (a.k.a. “power yoga” or “weight loss yoga”) – is fast-paced and flowing
  • Bikram Yoga (a.k.a. “hot yoga”) – is practiced in very hot and humid rooms to help practitioners stretch more deeply
  • Ashtanga Yoga builds strength and endurance through a consistent and intense series of poses
  • Kundalini Yoga focuses on calming the mind, awakening the chakras, and renewing the body through movement, mantras, and breathing.
  • Yoga Nidra(a.k.a. “lucid sleeping”) is a deep state of meditative relaxation in which you remain aware of your physical environment.
  • Karma Yoga(a.k.a. “working yoga”) is the practice of making your work a spiritual offering, releasing its benefits rather than keeping them for yourself. It’s the most spiritual – and mundane! – type of yoga, great for a retreat on the job.

Find the type(s) of yoga that suit you and enjoy their many benefits this month!



Get a Fresh Start with New Year, Late Summer Style!

sun in late summerIt’s hard not to experience September as New Year Redux. Sure, it may be missing the champagne, Auld Lang Syne and sparkly ball-dropping hoopla, but there’s all the sense of new beginnings as summer transitions into fall, we return recharged from our summer vacations, and students go back to school.


And who knows – with luck, you may even celebrate the turn of the season with fireworks from Labor Day celebrations!


In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the period between mid-August and Autumn Equinox is a time of transition…a time of harvesting what we’ve planted and planting afresh for a second harvest in the fall.


For me, as a Busy Professional, On The Go Woman, this is a time of year to step back and see where I am regarding my life and business plan. Right now I’m busy tweaking the intentions and milestones I set at the beginning of 2015, so that I can meet my goals at the end of the calendar year.


As you know, I find balance in my busy life by staying in tune with the rhythm of the seasons…and this time of year is associated with the grounding element of Earth.


Ellsara Kling gives some ways to experience that anchoring influence as your schedule ramps up at this time of year…


“During Late Summer, the Early Summer heat is beginning to cool and the earth energy is beginning to prepare for the Fall. Although fruits are prevalent in this season, excessive eating of fruit can lead to excessive dampness later on. Smaller meals are beneficial just now.  It is important to continue to resist the temptation of cold drinks and too much raw foods such as salads.  Remember, the stomach likes warm foods and this is Stomach Season!  Be especially good to your Stomach/Spleen energy now and reap the rewards later”


What are the best foods to eat during late summer? No surprise – the ones that are fresh and locally available at your local Farmer’s Market! These would include cucumbers, tomatoes, summer squash, peppers, okra, corn, eggplant, watermelon, apples, pears, peaches, nectarines, plums, grapes, blackberries, figs, lemons, limes, garlic, chives…and the list goes on…..


A particular favorite food of mine is eggplant, which is in abundance this time of year, and is so wonderfully versatile. You can grill, bake, roast, stew, or sauté it, and its rich flavor and substantial texture stand in nicely for meat, if you’re working on becoming vegetarian.


And the nutritional benefits of eggplant!!! Aside from being rich in fiber, copper, manganese, folate, and the B vitamins, it also contains important phytonutrients and antioxidants such as the potent free radical scavengers nasunin, which protects cell membranes from damage, and chlorogenic acid, which offers anti-cancer, antimicrobial, antiviral, and anti-LDL (bad cholesterol) properties.


I will also share my favorite eggplant recipe


With the deep-summer heat wearing off and cool fall breezes beginning, this is a glorious time of year. Go out and enjoy it!

Find a Whole New Level of Health and Happiness at Your Local Farmers’ Market!

Have you seen them yet – the tents and trucks of farmers’ markets and CSAs popping up all over, in cities, towns and rural communities? They’re one of my favorite signs of summer, promising local produce from local farmers in weekly festivals of food, fun and connection!

If you haven’t discovered farmers’ markets for yourself yet, you may be wondering what this has to do with health and happiness…after all, why does it matter whether you get your veggies or meat direct from a local farmer or from a grocery stand marked “Local?” After all, being an On-the-Go Woman, you’re constantly looking for ways to save time!

I hear you! But as an On-The-Go Woman you especially need nourishment – not just basic nutrients, but nourishment of body, soul, and mind – and there are few better places for nourishing all three levels than at a farmer’s market or CSA.

For one thing – the anonymous farmers supplying those big-box grocery stands won’t answer your questions about how the veggies and cows, pigs, chickens, etc., were raised. They won’t be greeting you by name week after week, learning your favorites, and suggesting new taste experiences fresh out of the fields. They won’t share stories of the challenges and joys of farming, so you can come to know the life of your food before it ever hits your plate.

For me, that’s the best thing about buying direct from the farmers: connection. Food ceases to be a generic shrink-wrapped product and becomes part of a story and a human relationship. Being a part of this connection brings me happiness.

And from a health perspective, of course, there’s a huge difference between just-picked fresh food that grew on a small farm less than 100 miles from your home, and mass-produced food shipped from an agribusiness halfway across the continent, or in another country entirely!

Because the farmers at a market or CSA are likely to have organic , beyond-organic or integrative , or biodynamic operations, their products are loaded with genuine flavor…far from the bland, chemically-edged taste of Big Agriculture’s gassed, irradiated, pesticided, or genetically-modified produce.

But not only that. With a farmer’s market or CSA, you’re eating seasonally – foods that are at their peak here and now, in your area! Because of this, they supply vitamins and minerals that can’t be matched by out-of-season hothouse veggies that were picked before their prime, waxed, sprayed with preservatives, and transported for hundreds or thousands of miles.

In fact, if you tune in and really pay attention, you’ll find that the whole energetic field of this local food is different, brighter, more vibrant!

Speaking from my own experience as an On-The-Go Woman, if you buy food from these local, eco-conscious farmers for a month – or a summer! – you’ll find yourself reaching a new level of wellness. You’ll be connecting in mind, body, and spirit to an earlier, healthier time in our evolution, a time of connection to the earth, to the plants and animals that become our food, and to each other.

This is the way life should be!

You can learn more about the benefits of eating seasonal, locally-grown produce here . And to find the farmers’ markets closest to you, check out Local Harvest .

Please share where your favorite farmer’s market is located and your recent local purchases.

Bon appetit!



Memoirs of An On-The-Go Superwoman

Last week was Women’s Health Week and it got me thinking what are we doing to create the life we want, as wonderful High-Achieving, High-Performing, On-the-Go Superwomen?

Wow – how’s that for a stress-inducing question? We’re all conditioned to want big, measurable results now – to get past all our obstacles and move on to super-efficiency and super-effectiveness. We’re told to “Just Do It” and “Lean In.”

But the truth is – creating a life of wellness, success, ease and flow involves lessons that mesh your mind, body and spirit; they can’t be learned overnight!

I can tell you personally – it is a lifelong journey! Just recently, I integrated what I’ve learned at a whole new level: I’m doing as much as I ever did, but with less struggle and more time for myself. I’m fully focused and aligned with what I want in life, I’m letting go of what doesn’t serve me, I’ve said a great big YES to my goals….and the Universe is supporting my focus and intention as never before!

So I’d like to invite you to de-stress, not di-stress, with a few of the lessons I’ve learned along the way….

Trust in the Universe/the Divine

I grew up in a religious household, but I didn’t really start tapping into my spiritual life at any deep level until I connected with my deep feminine, receiving side. Learning to get out of my own way, to stop struggling and striving, and instead to allow connections, synchronicities, and other miracles to happen – for a high-achieving, high-performing Superwoman with control issues, that’s been a major lesson!

Ask, Believing You Will Receive

A client once told me, “If I don’t demand and insist on getting what I need, nothing will happen.” Oh, did I know how she felt! And as I’ve evolved along this path, simply asking and letting go of the demands and insistence, I’ve started to see…well, things I could only call miracles happening! For example, the first time my husband surprised me by sending flowers to my office rather than the house. There was also the time I entered a Share Your Dream video contest and won over $1000 to pay for one of my nutritional courses…what a thrill!

Stop Trying to Fix the World

Letting go has been another huge lesson: learning to trust that clients – and friends and family – are on their own journeys and they will make the decisions they need to make. This has changed my Discovery consultations profoundly: I start now from the understanding that I can’t singlehandedly “fix” the women who come to me. I don’t have to prove that they need me; I need to listen, learn what they need and offer what I have to give. If they choose to accept what I offer – wonderful, we’ll work together in partnership! If not – that’s fine, too; they know what they need.

Balance Knowledge with Intuition

Like many high-achieving, high-performing Superwomen, I was ferociously well-trained to use my intellect and left-brain knowledge on all problems. The trouble was – intellect alone didn’t always come up with the appropriate answer! When I learned to balance my intellectual knowledge with intuition, I gained access to a level of wisdom I’d never known was available to me.

Let Go of the Addiction to Overwhelm

If someone had told me, years ago, that I was addicted to overwhelm, I would have been outraged. I didn’t ask to be saddled with so many responsibilities, keeping so many balls in the air – and good heavens, if I dropped one, what would people think? And despite this, as fast as I’d finish with one ball, I’d pick up another. I couldn’t stop myself. It wasn’t until a coach asked me what I wanted in life, and I answered, “Peace and Joy” that I realized that I was creating the exact opposite of my deepest desire.

So I started looking: what part of my chronic overwhelm did bring me pleasure? The answer: productivity. And did I need to be overwhelmed to be productive? No! I could fill my time with the work that juices me up, excites me, and then consciously identify the payoff in other projects. The outcome: I’ve freed myself from the addiction to overwhelm. I choose my projects consciously, and I now have guilt-free time for myself!

Let Go of the Need to Please

Where I used to turn myself into a pretzel, surrendering my own knowledge, judgment, and sense of integrity to please others, I finally realized – people are actually OK with my being in alignment with my highest values! And if they’re not – I need to re-examine why they’re in my life. I could be myself, and people would still like and respect me…perhaps even more than they would otherwise. The sense of release and self-validation was mind-boggling!

There is so much more that I could share, so many more “ahas” and deep shifts. They didn’t come all at once, but in steps along the way, over more than 10 years.

The deepest realization that I had just recently, was that in this culture health is not looked at in terms of Being but rather Doing. Problem is – Doing is not transformational, where Being is. For example, when I was at the rock bottom, I had the realization: I no longer want to Be this way! Instead, I want to Be happy, healthy, whole. And out of that vision of Being, I built a plan of Doing that has guided me ever since.

A vision of Being. That’s what can sustain you through all your lifelong journey, step by step, toward total wellness and effortless ease, flow, and grace.

Are you an On The Go Woman who wants to balance your Doing with Being ? Schedule your 60 minute Ditch the worry and stress and get happy AND healthy Discovery Session. Click here to schedule.


Stressed? Release It Naturally

Stressed. Don’t your shoulders tense when you think of the words? Jaw clenches, stomach tightens, your whole body subtly shifts to “Alert” mode. Whether it’s triggered by an argument in your family, a tight deadline, a looming presentation, a traffic jam on the way to the airport, or a dark alley between the parking garage and your destination, stress is one of the inescapables of life.

Sometimes this is OK – even good! Healthy stress, such as preparing for a race, or measuring up to performance reviews, keeps you at the top of your game. But when you’ve been under pressure for weeks, months, or even years (as with adults who have been abused as children), your nervous system, your muscles, your heart and lungs – all of your body systems! – become locked in a chronic stress pattern.

Your body’s response to stress is largely managed by a hormone called cortisol (a.k.a. “the stress hormone”). Cortisol is involved in controlling blood sugar levels, immune responses, anti-inflammatory responses, blood pressure, cardiovascular function, and central nervous system function, among other things.

While cortisol levels fluctuate throughout the day, they also peak when the adrenal glands signal a response to stress. When the stressful situation passes, cortisol levels should return to normal – but if the body has responded to ongoing stress for weeks, months, or years (for example, in adults who were abused as children), cortisol levels never have a chance to fall. And this can be damaging – even deadly – to your health and well-being, leading over time to conditions such as:

  • Brain fog
  • Weight gain
  • Addictive behaviors, from shopping and eating to substance abuse
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Irritability and rage
  • Insomnia
  • Digestive problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease

So what can you do to reduce stress? While I could literally talk for days about self-care tools such as exercise, meditation, sleep – even simply taking a deep breath! – one of the most effective tools I’ve found has been adaptogens. That is, plant-based substances such as herbal teas, tinctures, and supplements that help your body to respond to stress and anxiety, resist fatigue and boost the immune system.

Some of the adaptogens that I personally use most often are:

  • Maca root
  • Holy basil
  • Ashwaghanda
  • Licorice
  • Astralagus
  • Chata, Reishi, and Shiitaki mushrooms

But if you’re interested in using adaptogens to control your stress levels, it’s important to be cautious! Talk with a holistic doctor, nutritionist or nutritional endocrinology  coach about the herb that’s best for your system, and start gently with a small dose for a few days. See how your body responds, and then continue or adjust the dose. Be gentle with yourself during this period and watch changes in your body and mood carefully. Most important, stay in touch with your doctor or wellness coach.

And while we’re talking about do-it-yourself treatment for stress…

One of the ways we’re often tempted to “self-medicate” under stress is through comfort foods such as breads and pastries, chips and cookies, and of course chocolate. Most of these are empty-calorie snacks (which are usually loaded with preservatives and GMOs): they may give you a momentary boost of energy or mood, but a crash is sure to follow!

So, instead of these guilty, harmful pleasures, I’m going to close with a recipe for one of my favorite sweet indulgences….enjoy!

“On The Go” Herbal Treats

Mix wet ingredients in a bowl:

  • 1 cup nut and or seed butter (almond, cashew, and/or sunflower)
  • 2 tbs of unrefined melted coconut oil
  • ½ cup raw honey or vanilla stevia to taste
  • 2 tsp of vanilla extract if you use honey or plain stevia

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl:

  • ½ cup of chopped nuts or seeds ( brazil nuts, almonds, and/or pecans)
  • 1 tsp of sea salt
  • about 1 cup herbal powders (ashwaganda, holy basil, chaga, shilajit, maca, and astragulus)  You can use all of these or a combination of the ones you have; I recently combined all of them! Use about 1 -2 tbs of each herb.
  • ¼  – ½ cup of dried fruit  (goji berries, cherries, raisins, figs, apricots, dates, cranberries )

Combine dry and wet ingredients; mix to the consistency of cookie dough. Divide up the dough and roll into balls.  Roll the balls in cacao or carob powder and/or coconut.

To receive the health benefits of these herbal delights, I recommend eating two a day. You can store these balls in the freezer until ready to use.

Celebrate Women’s Health Week with Radical Self-Care!

I love Women’s Health Week . Just love it. It sounds rather silly, perhaps – but rather than this being a “holiday” that pressures our loved ones into showing their appreciation for us, it’s a time for us to pay attention to the ways we do (or don’t!) take care of ourselves and our wellness. After all, as Mao Zedong said, “Women hold up half the sky.” We can’t carry the weight of the heavens (and our families, and careers, and…..) if we’re spiritually exhausted, emotionally depleted, or physically ill!

So this is a good time to ask: what does it mean to you to be a well woman, and how do you tend to your wellness?

The Women’s Health.Gov web page on National Women’s Health Week makes the following five suggestions:

  • Visit a health care professional to receive regular checkups and preventive screenings.
  • Get active.
  • Eat healthy.
  • Pay attention to mental health, including getting enough sleep and managing stress.
  • Avoid unhealthy behaviors, such as smoking, texting while driving, and not wearing a seatbelt or bicycle helmet.

While I agree 100% with these suggestions, I’d like to add a few thoughts on three of them, and share one or two of my own….

Get Active

“Get active” – that is so much better than saying “Exercise!” Where “exercise” brings to mind “no pain no gain” routines like cross-training, Zumba, or Pilates, “activity” could refer to free-flowing, fun practices like gardening, walking or bicycling, bellydancing, Tai Chi, yoga…the list is endless. If you’re looking for a super-efficient form of activity to fit into a busy schedule, many nutritional and physical fitness experts are recommending “burst” training (Extremely short duration high intensity interval training), which helps your body adapt to stress, burn fat, regulate blood sugar and boost production of Human Growth Hormone.

And there are added, hidden benefits. Doing your physical activity barefoot on the Earth (“Earthing”) helps to activate the root chakra and sacral chakras, release pent-up emotions and keep you grounded and centered (among many other benefits!). Outdoor activity also gives you a good dose of Vitamin D, as well as the mental and spiritual benefits of being in nature.

And all of this is essential to keeping your bones strong, your joints supple, and your heart healthy.

Eat Healthy –

Women’s Health.Gov is singing my song here! I could talk for hours (and often do) about the importance of healthy eating in maintaining wellness. Here are just a few of the key points to remember:

  • Hydrate – drink 1/2 your body weight in ounces of water
  • Tip your diet toward a better pH balance, and reduce inflammation and disease, with more alkaline foods such as lemons, limes, all greens, cruciferous vegetables
  • Try fermented foods such a kimchi and sauerkraut  – they naturally produce more of the “good” probiotic bacteria in your gut, which aids in digestion and helps decrease sugar cravings
  • Reduce your consumption of sugar, caffeine, processed foods and breads/pasta
  • Eat high water content fruits and vegetables – they’re a great source of antioxidants, and keep your skin supple and you your juices flowing
  • Boost your magnesium (thus boosting dopamine production in your brain and helping your body to process estrogen) by adding Swiss chard, spinach, nettle, pumpkin seeds, cashews and almonds to your diet.
  • Boost your calcium while you avoid the side effects of dairy: indulge in green goddess foods such as tahini , spinach and nettle.

Mental Wellness

Did you know that Women’s Health Week comes in the middle of Mental Health Month? It’s a wonderful twofer, reminding us to support not only our physical health, but also the balance of our body/mind/spirit. It’s important to take positive steps toward mental self-care, starting with practices like these:

  • Connecting with supportive, loving people
  • Taking time to play
  • Laughing!
  • Taking part in activities you enjoy
  • Practicing gratitude
  • Connecting with your higher power

Most important – if life is seeming bleak, or you are having difficulty functioning, see a therapist or other mental health care professional! Whether you choose cognitive therapy, medication, or a naturopathic path to relieve your struggle, you do not need to suffer alone. Get help.

Bottom line? Be proactive with self care activities!

As women, we often wind up tending to everyone around us while we neglect ourselves. Women’s Health Week is an important week-long reminder, but we need to bring the lesson home all year long: to make the time to nurture our own wellness with self nourishing activities.

So – start building your self-care habits now! Why not try doing just one of these activities each day…and plan to enjoy them for a lifetime…

  • Turn your plate into an artist’s palette with colorful fresh, local fruits and vegetables
  • Check in with your intuition before agreeing to something

Treat yourself to a massage, pedicure or manicure

  • End a tough day with a soothing salt bath, scented with essential oils
  • Read a challenging or inspirational book
  • Meditate
  • Lastly, remember to breathe.

To your self-care!


The Keys To Love

It’s the most popular myth in the world…that your true love is “out there,” and one day you will discover that person. It’s just a matter of enduring the loneliness and looking in the right places to find him or her. S/he’s your other half, your soulmate, your twin flame…your life until you are united will be incomplete.

It’s the undercurrent of the whole singles scene, every “lonely hearts” bar, and half the world’s popular love songs. And it’s complete baloney.

No, we’re not saying that you’re doomed to a life of solitude, or that you will never find romance – quite the contrary! The myth is that life without romance is a “half-life,” an incomplete life that must be endured; that until you find your “other half,” you cannot live fully.

“Yeah, yeah,” we can hear you saying wearily. “Whitney Houston says that the greatest love is love of yourself (sigh). But that’s not going to put its arms around me in the middle of the night.”

True…however, we believe that a life that’s fulfilled and fulfilling throughout your waking hours leads to greater joy in the long run than a midnight hug to distract you from inner emptiness! And a life with that kind of fulfillment is always the result when you open your heart to love yourself.

“But isn’t that selfish?” you might be asking. Actually, no – sez not only Ms. Houston, but also the world’s greatest spiritual teachers. Jesus, for example, said that the first law was to love God, and the second to love your neighbor as yourself. Not to love only your neighbor (or only yourself for that matter), but to love both, equally.

It’s not about pulling inward to focus on how wonderful you are to the exclusion of all others; it’s about learning to appreciate yourself and your existence as a wonderful, magical part of a wonderful, magical cosmos. To celebrate the fact that you – and everyone and everything around you – are inseparable from an amazing, miraculous creation.

As Albert Einstein said, “There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle, or you can live as if everything is a miracle.” Simply because you are alive, you are part of that miracle.

This is the difference between codependence and love. While you are looking for an “other half” to complete you, seeing yourself as incomplete, you are missing your unfailing connection to the miracle of All That Is. When you enter a relationship in that state of incompleteness, you become dependent upon the other person to fill your need for cosmic connection, subconsciously expecting them to be perfect and limitless in their love. If you’re entering a relationship while seeing yourself as bad or worthless, undeserving of love (your own or anybody else’s), that will show up in your treatment of the other person, and of yourself.

You can see how these issues would be deal-breakers in any relationship!

And when you love others from a place of secure self-love and cosmic connection, you can relate to them with authenticity and trust, accepting them in all that they are, no matter how much like you or different from you they may be. You can forgive their failings, because you aren’t basing your identity and your self-worth on their perfection.

So before you start looking for love from others, learn to affirm and believe that you are a miraculous part of the cosmos, you are lovable and beloved whether or not you have a partner by your side. Just as there is no division between your mind and body, there is no point at which the energy of the cosmos ends and you begin. You’re not separate, you’re not fallen, you’re not lost, you’re not alone. You are connected to everything that exists, and no matter where you are, you have your place within the universe. You only need to recognize it to tap into that energy.

So how do you find that sense of connection? Here are just a few ideas…

  • Go out in the woods, or by the ocean, turn off your mental chatter, and simply focus on feeling all that’s around you…the breezes, the earth, the birds, the light, the fragrances…immerse yourself in your senses, feel yourself as a part of All That Is.
  • Go to your sacred space, light a candle, and call on your Source energy, Higher Power, God/Goddess, Divinity by whatever name. Clear your mind and feel the love and light fill your heart.
  • In your sacred space, after calling on the positive energies of the universe, journal, draw, sing, drum, dance, releasing your spiritual clutter and creating space in your soul for Love.

Isn’t that better than suffering the loneliness of believing that another human being is the Only One who can fulfill you, and you can’t live without him or her?

Balancing Your Emotions Through the Passionate Sacral Chakra

If the first chakra is all about our survival in the material world, the second is about connection — in fact, Caroline Myss calls the second or sacral chakra “the partnership chakra.” Located just below the navel — around womb level for women — this chakra is described in Hindu tradition as the “feminine creative abode,” or the “seat of life.”

It’s also called the “dwelling place of the Self,” writes intuitive healer Anarah, because this chakra not only influences partnership and relationships, but also our groundedness in our own identity: our ability to set boundaries and maintain our personal space. This balance of individuality and partnership is the essence of the sacral chakra’s fluid energy, governing emotions, sensuality, sexuality, intuition and creativity. It also helps us to determine where we want to attach our energy, whether materially, socially, or spiritually.

Ruled by the element of Water, the Sacral chakra is responsible not only for flowing emotions, but also for the organs that process fluids: kidneys, bladder, large intestine. It not only influences your imaginative creativity; it also governs your body’s procreative functions through the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries, as well as cell division and growth.

When your sacral chakra is in balance, you’re confident and at peace within yourself; you come to your relationships with healthy boundaries, a positive self-image, and a keen, grounded “people sense.” You enjoy and nurture your body, and you are comfortable with engaging your creativity, whether you are aiming to conceive a child, a work of art, or a technical project.

When your second chakra is out of balance, on the other hand, your emotional life may be full of challenges like these:

  • Feeling others’ emotions (sometimes overwhelmingly)
  • Losing yourself in your relationships, or hearing others complain that you smother them
  • Projecting your powerful emotions outward to create all kinds of drama in your life, or feeling numbed-out and depressed
  • Clinging to memories, grudges, people, roles, or things

So how can you rebalance your sacral chakra? It’s not as hard as it may seem. Here are a few tips…

Keep your system flowing smoothly with vital nutrients

  • To function at their best, the organs governed by this chakra need water, and plenty of it. So, drink plenty of water — half your weight in ounces of water, or until your pee is clear.
  • Lubricate your system by taking in plenty of oils: almond oil, coconut oil, olive oil, peanut oil, walnut oil, and avocado oil. All of these have different cooking properties; to use them healthily, use this guide
  • Support your brain function, endocrine system and immune system with foods high in essential fatty acids such as dark oily fish – wild caught salmon and tuna, flaxseed meal, and walnuts.
  • Seeds are the beginning of life: keep your energy level strong and steady with seeds such as flax, poppy, pumpkin, sesame, hemp and sunflower.
  • Orange is the color associated with the sacral chakra, and it’s nourished by orange foods – apricots, cantaloupes, kumquats, mandarin oranges, tangerines, oranges, nectarines, papayas, peaches, persimmons, carrots, orange bell peppers, pumpkin, yams

Use essential oils

You can get the benefits of essential oils by using them in a diffuser, in candles, or in your bath (Do not use them in food or drink, and always dilute for safety — see Some oils that balance the sacral chakra are: sandalwood, tangerine, orange, bergamont, rosemary, jasmine, ylang-ylang.

Use semiprecious stones

You can apply stones as an energy treatment by lying down and placing them on your chakras, or keeping them in a pocket or on a necklace as you go about your day. The chakras, which act as energy vortices, channel energy from the stones into the meridians of your body, and finally into your aura.

Here are a few of the stones that can support your sacral chakra (learn more about using stones for chakra balancing here:

Amber – Balances emotions, builds mental clarity, clears negative energy, and releases phobias and fears
Carnelian – Builds emotional balance, positive self image, and perception, as well as creativity, peace, and unity with nature and other people.
Orange calcite — Eases overwhelming emotions of fear, depression, post-traumatic stress, and suicidal thoughts. Restores emotional balance and can boost intuition. Also supports the reproductive, gastrointestinal, and excretory systems, and balances sexual energies.
Red Jasper — Builds Earth connection for emotional and spiritual balance and grounding. Aids clarity and stability in the midst of personal difficulties.
Tiger’s Eye — Builds inner peace and balance; helps to release fear and anxiety. Inspires action, supports discernment and clarity in decision-making, unclouded by emotions.

Other ways to nourish your sacral chakra

Finally, don’t neglect these important techniques:

  • Hip opening exercises and yoga asanas
  • Dancing
  • Visualizing orange — sunsets, terra cotta, pumpkins, fruit — imagine!
  • Setting aside time to do something creative — writing, painting, cooking, singing, doing crafts
  • Journaling about your womb story or sex story
  • Having a womb sauna treatment

Next time we’ll look at the powerful Solar Plexus Chakra — seat of the will and self-determination. Stay tuned!