Wellness Wednesday: Sometimes you gotta make it work…

Peace Soulstars,

Let’s admit that we can all do better when it comes to diet.  This list of alkaline superfoods is just a helpful reminder that there are options when it comes to health!  By now,  most of us should know that healthy doesn’t mean boring and bland.   It’s mind over matter.  If you think it than it shall be.  It starts with changing your perception of food.

I get side eyes from time to time whenever I share some of my new discoveries like bee pollen for instance.  It looks odd to some and like nothing they want to put in their mouths but it is known for being one of the best superfoods out here.  Alone bee pollen does not taste good at all to me but when I add it to a bowl of coconut yogurt, fruit and granola topped with cacao nibs, it’s the bomb!

I make it work for me.  Mix those not-so-good-by-themselves foods with what you do like.  Make it work!  Don’t overwhelm yourself either. Pace yourself. At the end of the day,  you have to ask yourself:  Is this food feeding or fighting dis-ease?

Remember dis-ease cannot thrive in an alkaline body.  Don’t stress though.  Healthy doesn’t have to be stressful either.  If it’s stressful you just may need to take a different approach to find what works for you.  It’s that simple.

Love and light,

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Self Care Friday: We become what we do…

Peace Soulstars,

Let’s talk about something that has changed my life since 2013 and taught me the importance of self care…Yoga.  My first official yoga class was in 2013.  It was bikram yoga also known as “hot yoga”.  The name in and of itself is a bit intimidating when you haven’t experienced hot yoga before.  I was having a rough day and a friend of mine texted me about going to hot yoga class with her.

A part of me didn’t feel like it because I was in a horrible mood.  The other part had been curious about taking an actual yoga class with other people of all levels. I had done yoga at home for years but never took a class.  It was more about convenience I guess.

When my friend asked me to come to class with her, I had just taken my social work licensure exam and failed it.  I felt terrible but didn’t need to.  It was only a test.  All I know is that I told my husband about my invite to yoga and he encouraged me to go despite how I felt.  So, I went.  It was one of the best decisions I made for myself.

I remember at the beginning of the class while we were in child’s pose focusing on the breath I thought to myself “This is awesome.”…Just from breathing alone.  The instructor said the words which were music to my soul “Let go of all of the shit from this week”.  I needed to hear that and I did.  I began to learn the art of letting go that day and it felt amazing.

I had done yoga before but there was something different about this time.  I did yoga for “fitness” before but this time I had a reason beyond getting the poses right.  I got on the mat not for physical exercise but for my spirit. Later, I learned that it’s called yoga flow for a reason.  It starts with awareness, the breath, spirit, mind and the body follows.

My spirits were low and needed uplifting.  My peace of mind was shook by an external conditions and I allowed that to happen.  I learned that my peace of mind is not contingent upon passing a test or how others perceive me or any other extenuating circumstances.  I cannot control what goes on outside of myself but I can control what goes on within me.

I proceeded to fall in love with yoga and kept it up for almost a year two to three times a week.  Once I discovered pure barre I alternated between yoga and barre.  Nothing ever felt like yoga though. Nothing ever compared.

Fast forward to today.  I’ve been practicing yoga at home about three or more days a week.  Recently I participated in a challenge (twelve days of yoga) which motivated me to practice daily even if only for ten minutes.  The benefits are endless and the little improvements you notice as days progress are profound.  Sometimes I do yoga twice a day(morning and evening) depending.

Over the years,  I always kept yoga in my routine along with other forms of body work (exercise).  So, I would do yoga once or twice a week at home along with pure barre which I had done for a few years (2013-2015).  It was great.  I love pure barre too but nothing was like yoga.  Yoga is soul work when you fully embrace it.

Prior to starting yoga, I thought it was about fitness but had a mindful component to it.  It’s actually the other way around and more.  Yoga means “union”.   We could get into sanskrit terms but for now I’ll keep it simple.  Mind, body, and spirit become aligned when you become yoga.  They unite.

When you break down the many aspects of mind, body, spirit there are many other components within.  We don’t “do” yoga, we become yoga.  When we become it, our soul is illuminated.  Everything else falls into place.  You may not be into yoga which is fine but I am.

Books like The Bhagavad Gita by Eknath Easwaran (although there are many translations available) and Osho’s Mind, Body, Balancing as well as others have all increased my interest in yoga. I’ve begun diving deeper beyond the surface of how yoga is presented in western culture.  Oh, India how I would love to come experience you full circle….One day.

Just be mindful that movement is necessary.  Stagnant energy that doesn’t get released finds places to hide within.  If that stagnant energy doesn’t get shaken up regularly, it can eventually develop into physical ailments and conditions making you sick.  We become what we do, so choose wisely.

Love and light,

 

 

 

Updates

Peace Soulstars,

Hello to all of you beautiful people.  Unfortunately, once again I’ve managed to let time pass without blogging regularly.  Thanks to computer issues (damn Mac chargers are the worst!) and of course…life, I was unable to blog like I wanted to.  I could’ve done so from my phone which isn’t a bad idea. I may start doing that sometimes but it’s not the same.  Although, I have to be honest in saying that I think I bit off a little more than I could chew.  I went from more of free flow blogging to daily blogging which was good information but ultimately became too much for me to keep up with.  It wasn’t my style to just blog for the sake of blogging.  When that happens it becomes less authentic and more contrived.  The latter doesn’t resonate with me at all. Needless to say, from now on I’ll be blogging more regularly.

I  have so much to share from all things spirituality to some great recipes using foods that increase your vibration and of course mental health.  I’ve discovered some meditation techniques that work for pain reduction and anxiety especially a good one for menstrual pain.  Oh, and I haven’t updated you on how I was able to heal myself from an ovarian cyst that I was diagnosed with late last year.  Yoga, meditation, diet and just overall lifestyle changes work wonders!

The more I read, open my mind to new ways of thinking and appreciate different perspectives the more I learn.  I cannot wait to share what I’ve learned with you.  You can also check me out on instagram (check the side bar for that link).  I check in with random thoughts and thought provoking info regularly on the gram.

Be on the look out for new posts this week!

Love&Light,

 

Superfood Wednesdays: Mushrooms!

mushrooms2

Health Benefits of Mushrooms

  • Lowers elevated cholesterol levels
  • Improves bone density
  • Regulates insulin levels
  • Helps lower blood pressure
  • Improves immune function
  • High in iron, antioxidants, Vitamins B2, B3, and D
  • Contributes to body’s alkalinity

Peace Soulstars,

Mushrooms are a fave of mine as noted in the previous post.  If you’re not a fan you may want to skip this post altogether unless you’re feeling adventurous.  If not, no worries.  Everything ain’t for everybody.  So, I decided to discuss the health benefits of the star of Tuesday’s recipe.  Portobello Mushrooms.  I believe different types have different properties but I’m just speaking about mushrooms in general today.  They’re fresh on my mind because I’ve been using them frequently.

I wanted to share the wealth of knowledge I’m acquiring about different foods and their health benefits.  At the end of the day what we eat is either contributing to or preventing disease.  Not sure about you but I’m all about prevention.  I’m not about that conventional medicine life nor am I a fan of always being in the doctor’s office.  With that said as pictured above mushrooms have quite the resume in the healthy department.  The simple fact that it strengthens the immune system and is an alkaline food is good enough for me because the more alkaline your body is the less susceptible to developing disease you are.  Not only are mushrooms healthy but they are so versatile.

mushroom-fritatta
Pictured: Fritatta with mushrooms
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Pictured: Mushroom pesto pizza with sauteed kale
warm-mushroom-salad
Pictured: Warm mushroom salad

I love them in and with just about anything during anytime of the day.  Mushrooms can be incorporated in every meal.  I’ve had them in my breakfast frittatas and omelets, for lunch in salads or stir fry and for dinner as I have made a pesto mushroom pizza with kale.  The possibilities are endless! Enjoy exploring new ways to incorporate this superfood into your lifestyle.  If you have any tips or other ways you incorporate mushrooms into your meals please share the love in the comments!

Love and Light,

9k=-1

 

Meditation…My Most Important Lessons

“Meditation is emptying your mind completely of all belief, ideology, concept, thought.  Only in an empty mind when there is no dust left on the mirror truth reflects.” ~Osho

Peace Soulstars,

The above quote is from “The Book of Wisdom” by Osho which I have yet to finish because it’s filled with so much wisdom that I have to pace myself.  I take notes in the margins and everything.  I highly recommend it.  Many may find this “mindless” concept of meditation questionable.  It has even become quite controversial but just like with any other information you take it as just that.  It is information.  Use it how you see fit.  What is truth to one is not truth to the other.

Meditation is all in what you make it out to be.  It does not always have to consist of you sitting “mindlessly” in lotus position while deep breathing.  For example, this past weekend my meditation consisted of creating my vision board (finally).  Most of the time I  do sit in lotus position while deep breathing as I let the thoughts that enter my mind pass like clouds in the sky.  My understanding is that it is okay to have thoughts while meditating.  It is what the mind does.  The key is not letting the thoughts control your feelings and/or distract you from your peace of mind.  Also, have fun!  Meditating should not be stressful.  It defeats the purpose if it is.

I’ve meditated off and on in the past but my most successful experience with meditating began when I used the app Headspace.  I did the free 10 minute daily sessions which helped me understand what I was doing, why, and how to begin.  From there, I began meditating on my own and found that I was able to meditate for 10 minutes without a timer or other guidance.  This intrigued me as I found that the mind truly is more powerful than we give it credit.  It was nonstop from then on which led me to learn how to meditate in other ways besides sitting still.  Though I do enjoy sitting still and find it very effective.

In the months that I have been practicing daily meditation for at least 15- 20 minutes (sometimes longer) here are a few lessons I’ve learned:

  • There are many creative, effective ways to meditate.  Do not just stick to one method
  • You can meditate anywhere when you really get the hang of it
  • Learning to let my thoughts come and go without reacting to them helped me resist feeling (letting thoughts control you)
  • I was able to tune out the physical state (sounds, distractions, tension/pains in the body) by focusing on the breath and breathing  causing me to relax
  • It is okay to lose focus at times as thoughts take you off track but what’s important is that you bring your awareness back to the breath

I’ll be sharing some of my experiences with meditation.  I think many of you will find it interesting how I learned to take life to a whole other level by learning how to connect with my spiritual self.  I hope you find this helpful in establishing a meditation practice of your own.  Remember, everyone is different with different needs and starting from different points in their journey.  When you understand that, you’ll be able to reap the full benefits of meditation.

Love and Light,

9k=-1