If you find yourself needing a few minutes to reconnect to yourself, to feel grounded and to feel empowered, take a few minutes to sit down, quiet down and simply breathe. You’ll be amazed at the shift you feel once you’re done.
You’re worthy of these 15 minutes.
Breath work may not be for you if you have the following conditions:
High Blood Pressure (not controlled with medication)
Cardiovascular disease including angina, previous heart attack or stroke.
Diagnosis of aneurysm in the brain or abdomen
Uncontrolled thyroid conditions and diabetes
Asthma – if asthmatic, your inhaler nearby during the session.
Prior diagnosis of bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or previous psychiatric condition.
Hospitalization for any psychiatric condition or emotional crisis within the last 10 years.
Any other medical, psychiatric or physical conditions which would impair or affect ability to engage in any activities that involve intense physical and/or emotional release.
This list is not all inclusive and it’s generally recommended that if you have a question about a condition you may have that is not listed, that you consult a physician before beginning breathwork.
If you have or have had any of the listed conditions, it is strongly recommended you consult a physician before beginning breath work.
Before I completed a breathwork session, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I have tried meditation in the past, and it just wasn’t for me. Let’s just say I have a monkey mind, and during a five-minute meditation session, I thought more about my day and to-do list than actually meditating. So, when I discovered breathwork, I expected something similar… boy, was I wrong.
Here is what you can expect when you do a breathwork session:
Movement of energy: anxiety, stress, depression, and overwhelm are all types of energy in the body. With breathwork, through strong and deep breathing, you have the ability to activate, reset and unblock the mind, energy and emotional systems. With this, you have the ability to bring the anxiety from your head and shift it into energy in your body. You have the ability to not only activate the energy that is inside of you, but realize the power you have within you.
Emotional release: with the use of your breath, you have the power to heal from trauma, childhood wounds, limiting beliefs and anxiety/depression. With the use of your breath you can unlock, cleanse, energize and harmonize the body, mind and emotional systems. Emotions coming to the surface, whether that be sadness, anger, happiness or peace, are emotions being released and are all part of the process of resetting the emotional system.
Sensations: that’s right, expect to feel tingly sensations. I will go more into this next week when I talk about the physical changes that are going on within your body during a breathwork session, but just know that if you feel tingling in your hands, legs, chest, stomach, lips etc., this is normal. Some also experience tetany: cramping of the hands, which is also normal due to the physiological changes going on in the body. You may also feel cold or hot, so make sure you have a blanket nearby, if needed.
Meditative state: I have never been one to be able to go into a meditative state until breathwork. While in a meditative state you have the ability to activate your third eye, harmonize, calm and balance the subtle layers of your being, as well as rediscover your true self.
Breathwork has been an impactful, spiritual and life-changing modality for me. I know that if you give it a chance, it can be this and so much more for you. If you ever have any questions or want to reach out to me, please click below on the email tab – I’d love to hear from you!
Did you know that you have the power to heal yourself? Yes, you! You have the power within you to heal yourself from stress, anxiety, overwhelm and ailments.
For so long we’ve been shown and told that in order to heal, we must take medication or we must seek something outside of ourselves; when in reality, we have everything we need within us. It comes down to something so simple, so natural and so essential to our existence: our breath.
Take a minute, sit back and recognize how you are currently breathing. Are you breathing into your belly or your chest? Is your breath long and slow? Or short and fast? Are you holding your breath? Is it irregular? Do you breathe in through your nose or your mouth?
Anxiety, stress, or overwhelm is simply energy in our body. If we can learn to regulate our breath, we can learn to regulate and shift from our sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) to our parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest).
When our bodies are in a constant state of stress our blood is typically acidic due to the increase in CO2 in our body. The increase in the CO2 in our body is due to our poor breathing habits. When our blood is acidic, it is an optimal environment for disease.
Over the next month, I will be writing all about breath work: how it has made a massive impact on my life, overcoming my limiting beliefs and healing my childhood wounds. How it can optimize your health in regard to your immunity, respiratory and cardiovascular health, as well as mental health. How it can have an impact on how you pursue your days; one breath at a time.
That’s right, I am a certified breath work instructor and it’s time to show you the positive impact your breath can have on YOU.
It’s time to start healing ourselves, from the inside out? You in? Let’s go!
In January, I was asked to speak on Code 321’s podcast, a podcast directed towards first responders. During the podcast, Nick Carson and I took a deep dive into negative emotions, the bad habits that often accompany the negative emotions and how they can have a massive impact on not only our life, but of the lives of the individual’s we love. Take a listen for some quick tips on how to recognize your unhealthy habits, identify the trigger attached to the unhealthy habits and how to shift them.
“I don’t know where to start. I always do this, I start something and then I quit…What’s the point?”
The point is, it CAN be better than this. You CAN be grateful for what you have, and still want more. You CAN have dreams while remaining humble. You can focus on yourself and your health when the world feels unsteady.
5-weeks to get you started. 5-weeks to kick-start your journey.
With a registered nurse and certified health coach offering you support, accountability, education and insight through workbooks and weekly meetings, you have the ability to set yourself up for success towards achieving your goals.
During this 5-week program, you will:
explore and pursue uncharted territory; looking at triggers, limiting beliefs and overcoming these barriers that shield you from connecting with your true self.
identify your goals, implement daily habits, and create a daily routine for success.
identify patterns when it comes to your nutrition and physical activity and implement changes to optimize your health.
Are you ready?
The perfect moment to start is right now. Let’s step on this path towards wellness together.
I can only speak from experience. I can only share with you the things that I do to maintain stability when it comes to the stress, overwhelm and sometimes chaos of the holidays. When it comes to maintaining my health: mental, emotional and physical during a very special time of year, it’s about consistency. I consistently pursue the habits that I have pursued all year that have served me well.
Movement – I came to a realization when I lived out in San Francisco, circa 2010/2011. It was Christmas morning, my family was on the East Coast and the only plan I had that day was to work. Needless to say, I was feeling a little down. Until I realized and thought, ‘why don’t I do something I love doing.’ So, I laced up my shoes and hit the streets of San Francisco in the warm West Coast air and had an amazing Christmas morning run. Never before have I ‘worked out’ on a holiday. Prior to this day, my mindset around ‘working out’ on a holiday was, ‘well it’s a holiday, why would I kick my ass on a day that is meant for rest and celebration.’ On this day in San Francisco, I realized and thought, ‘why wouldn’t I do something I love on one of my favorite days of the year?!’ It was this day that completely shifted my perspective about moving my body on any and all holidays. Obviously, moving my body is not always fun. Sometimes it’s frustrating, upsetting, angering or just downright boring BUT EVERY TIME I am done moving my body, I feel grateful that I did it. I encourage you, even on the holiday, even around the holidays, continue to move your body. My assumption is that although it may be hard to put on those shoes you will feel empowered when you’re done!
Nutrition – 2020 has been a big year in regard to my nutrition and how it can impact my mental, emotional and physical health. In May/June of this year, I found myself slipping into another postpartum depression. It was scary, unsettling and very challenging for me and my family. When I spoke with my doctor, he discussed anti-depressant medications with me, supplements and shifting some of my day-to-day routines. I refused to go on medication again for the depression because of the experience I had with medications previously. So I opted to look at my lifestyle and make some significant changes. One of those significant changes was my nutrition. Since June, my family and I have been eating 85-90% plant-based diet and what I will say is this: my anxiety is hardly there. My depression is gone. My energy has improved. My focus is better. My evening brain fog is also better. I’m not saying this is the answer for everyone, however I am saying that what we put into our bodies: processed food, refined sugar, dairy, meat, fried foods, alcohol, medications etc. all have a SIGNIFICANT impact on the way we feel. During the holidays, the way in which I will focus on my nutrition is to continue with this new way of eating with flexibility and I advise you to do the same. Continue your good eating habits throughout the holidays with some flexibility. Yes, I will eat the turkey, stuffing, my mom’s homemade rolls and dessert, but the next day, I will be right back on my plan that helps me feel my best, because if I can feel good, I can show up well for all the people and things in my life.
Sleep – This is NOT the first time I have talked about sleep – it’s crucial to our health. It impacts almost every tissue in our body and impacts growth and stress hormones, our immune system, appetite, breathing, blood pressure and cardiovascular health. During the holidays, make sure you’re getting adequate sleep, at least 7-9 hours per night. And if you have a bedtime routine, stay consistent with it. Continue to go to bed and wake up at the same time as you have been, especially if it helps you to feel good! This consistency will keep you on track.
These are a few of my recommendations about maintaining your mental health during the holidays and any other time of the year. You can’t be healthy if your mind isn’t healthy. Take care of you and the rest will fall into place.
I’m sure you’ve heard it before and maybe you have even experienced it before; you’ve committed to your wellness, optimizing your health and shifting your trajectory towards chronic illness, and then suddenly nothing seems to be shifting. You’re feeling more fatigued and with little energy. Your blood work stops improving or your weight loss hits a plateau. It happens more often than not. Here are some reasons for it: the body adapts to the training/changes, people stop following their nutrition or fitness plans after a few months, and/or the metabolism slows down if a person loses weight quickly. Here are a few ways you can kickstart things again:
Log your food – Tedious? Yes, but necessary for mindful eating. Just do it. 🙂
Increase exercise frequency or intensity – If you’ve been stuck on a cardio kick, implement some weight training. If you’ve been performing only weight training, implement 15-30 minutes per day of cardiovascular exercise that you enjoy. Consider increasing the number of repetitions, increasing the weight or increasing the number of exercises completed in a given timeframe.
Assess your sleep – Sleep is KEY when it comes to our health. Sleep keeps our heart healthy, reduces our risk for obesity, and strengthens our immune system. The goal is 7-9 hours per night, with the same bedtime and wakeup time each day.
Manage your stress – Consider deep breathing, meditation, music or any other stress management interventions that you can implement to calm you down when you’re revving up. Being in a state of chronic stress can impact hormonal changes that lead to an increased appetite. Stress can stimulate gherlin, an appetite enhancer and reduce the sensitivity of leptin, an appetite suppressant. Stress can literally shut of the signals to your brain about when to stop eating.
Bring on the fiber – Research shows that many people in the United States eat only half of the daily recommended amount of fiber. Implement small changes: add an additional fruit or vegetable each day for benefits such as: reduced inflammation, lower cholesterol, blood sugar control, plus bowel regularity!
Any lull in progress can be discouraging. However, it can also be an opportunity for continued growth, adaptation and progression. Barriers will come and go – choose to see them as opportunities vs. obstacles.
Last week, we looked at this idea that the partner/mate we choose, resembles both the positive and negative traits in our caregivers when we were children. We identified that we are attracted to our partners when it comes to them having both the positive and negative traits of our childhood caregivers, because our old brain is seeking reparation from our childhood wounds. We choose someone that has the ability to help heal our childhood wounds or hurt/worsen these wounds.
According to Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt, authors of Getting the Love you Want, the following are tactful tools to help you heal childhood wounds, optimize communication and connection with your partner, and to be in a loving, safe relationship.
Narrowing your Exits – often times partners tend to fall into a habit of “avoiding each other.” Whether it be through staying late at the office, scrolling social media, watching tv, reading romance novels etc., these habits are considered “exits.” And often times have become a typical scene for a couple because of anger and fear. Anger because of wish fulfillment – you’ve set up an expectation that your partner will fill the void of your childhood wound and fear because you see them, subconsciously as an enemy – “any person…who is perceived by the old brain to be a source of need gratification and then appears to be withholding that gratification is cataloged as a source of pain, and pain raises the specter of death.” The recommendation is this: narrow your exits gradually. Eliminate one of your exits, the easiest to eliminate and use that extra time to work on putting your feelings/emotions into words and communicating with your partner.
Imago Dialogue – developing a new way of communicating with your partner, knowing your partner, connecting with your partner and developing a conscious partnership broken down into three steps. First and foremost, before entering into this type of conversation, ensure that it’s an appropriate time for both individuals.
Mirroring – a sender will make a statement. The receiver of the statement with restate the sentence word-for-word or paraphrase and then ask if the message was received correctly. Then the receiver of the message can state, “is there more about that?” This gives the sender an opportunity to elaborate, if needed.
Validating – this is an opportunity to affirm the internal logic of each other’s remark, “what you’re saying makes sense to me. I can see how you were thinking and why you would think that way.”
Empathizing – “’ to feel as one with.’ When you and your partner are empathic with each other, you are as emotionally close as two people can be.
Caring Behaviors – this concept takes into account each partner writing down lists of ways their partners can please them. Not only does this eliminate the idea that our partners can read our minds, but it also allows your partner to know exactly what you want. When developing the list and setting number goals for the day/week, this takes out the tit-for-tat mentality. “Most relationships are run like a commodities market, with loving behaviors the coin in trade. But this kind of “love” does not sit well with the old brain. If John rubs Martha’s shoulders in the hope that she will let him spend the day going fishing, a built-in sensor in Martha’s head goes: Look out! Price tag attached. There is no reason to feel good about this gift, because I’ll have to pay for it later.’ Unconsciously, she rejects John’s attentions, because she knows that they were designed for his benefit, not hers.”
These are just some of the useful ways you can develop a compassionate and exceptional relationship.
When it comes to watching our words, the things we say, the way in which we say them and the impact our words can have on others, can be detrimental. And the thing about our words, especially the hurtful ones, typically come from a place of our own hurt; our own wound. Watch your words, you and your partner are worthy of healing.
Check out the book: Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt
I want to preface this email by saying this: if you are a parent to a young child, don’t freak out, my assumption is that you’re doing the best that you can; just keep doing that. If you are a parent to an adult child, don’t freak out, my assumption is that you did the best that you could; they will heal.
If you are reading this, I want you to read it with your childhood in mind. This is not about blame, this is about allowing space between your actions and reactions today and assessing why you act and do the things you do, especially when it comes to your partner.
Research shows that the person you are most likely to fall in love with is someone who has both the positive and negative traits of your parents. Your old brain is seeking reparation from someone who resembles the very people who were the source of most of your childhood challenges. The reason the unconscious is trying to resurrect the past is not a matter of habit or blind compulsion, but of a compelling need to heal old childhood wounds. (Take a minute to think of your partner and how this person could be similar to your parents).
Many children experience a rupture in their connection with their caregivers. For whatever reason, their caregiver failed to satisfy their basic needs for safety, affection and/or stability.
Being raised, we were taught, told and shown that there were certain thoughts and feelings that were appropriate, certain natural behaviors that we had to extinguish and certain talents and aptitudes we had to deny. We observed the choices our “parents made, the freedoms and pleasures they allowed themselves, the talents they develop, the abilities they ignored and the rules they followed…’This is how we live. This is how to get through life.’” These early childhood observations and teachings play a significant role in mate selection and is often a hidden source of tension in married life.
When you choose a partner or a mate and decide to get married, the primary expectation (subconsciously/unconsciously) is that your partner is going to love and care for you the way your parents never did. We enter our love relationship with emotional scars from our childhood and we unknowingly choose partners who resemble our caregivers. The unconscious selection process has brought together two people who can either hurt each other or heal each other, depending on their willingness to grow and change.
Fraud says that when we start to receive the love we long for from our partner, we experience pleasure and fear. We enjoy the way our partner is expressing love, while simultaneously feeling undeserving of it. Subconsciously, we feel we don’t deserve it; a part of us believes that in accepting the positive behavior, we are violating a powerful taboo. We are violating a limiting belief that we’ve held on to most of our life.
When we receive the love we so deeply desire, we eventually find a way to deny it: picking a fight, shutting down, expressing criticism etc.. We deny it because of these subconscious feelings and thoughts that we don’t deserve it. It is in this moment that we have the opportunity to start to heal our childhood wounds or enhance and strengthen them.
With that being said, many of our repetitious, emotional criticisms of our partner are disguised statements of our own unmet needs! Those criticisms of our partner may actually help us identify our lost self.
I am breaking this email into two weeks because there’s so much depth to it and a lot to unpack. Most of this information is from the classic book: Getting the Love you Want by Harville Hendrix. Next week we’ll explore ways to heal your childhood wound through your relationship with your partner.
I took this ‘stay home, stay safe’ time as an opportunity to create something new – a five week virtual program! This five week program is designed to help you build awareness, be more mindful and pursue your days with more intentionality. It is up to you to recognize that you can stick to anything you set your mind to and succeed. What do you think, do you want to dedicate five weeks to becoming a more intentional version of yourself? Let me know!