Tag: healthy

Whole Self Love: a new series

WHOLE SELF LOVE: a new series

Oh, Honey- I have some things to say about this little #frenemy right here. It’s been a hot minute since I have shared much publicly about my physical body, and here’s why:

  • Dieting Sucks
  • Talking about dieting is capital B BORING
  • Diet Culture is toxicAF
  • The number on the scale does not determine (nor can it ever measure) my worth

I know this to be True. You probably do as well! (And yet…)

It’s why, for the past 4-5 years, I have made it my personal mission to learn how to Love the body I live in, every damn day. Regardless of my clothing size, weigh-in numbers, age, shape, wrinkles, lumps, flab, rolls, freckles, muscles, strength, etc ad nauseum. I’ve been helped tremendously on my body-positive journey by trailblazers like Jessamyn Stanley (@mynameisjessamyn), Amber Karnes (@amberkarnesofficial), Dianne Bondy (@diannebondyyoga) and most recently Tiana Dodson (@onebeautifulyes) who are all amazing and beautiful.

So, I pose these questions: What if Loving your Whole Self meant loving your entire body? What would it take for you to Love all your parts and welcome them into your Wholeness?

I’m practicing Radical Self Love & normalizing fat bodies, even as I continue to shed some weight & heal what’s hurting inside. I even have been taking a series of rather societally unflattering selfies as part of my whole-self Love medicine and posting them on my Instagram stories. (It feels insanely liberating, btw) I knew that I couldn’t begin to address my health issues without first being willing to really, REALLY Love all of me. Including the parts that weren’t as pretty, the parts that hurt, and the parts that were breaking down.

As of this writing, it’s been 3 weeks since I began a total shift in my relationships with food & exercise. With the help of an interactive app/virtual program I am not just learning about healthier ways to eat and move and less psychologically & emotionally damaging ways to think about those things, but I’m integrating these new habits every damn day that are supporting my whole self. I won’t lie, it’s been some hard word (first week was the worst) but through the effort I am putting in and the support received, I’ve seen and felt some pretty spectacular results, including my first 10+ lbs. shed; increased endurance; a dramatic reduction in pain in my back, knees, and feet; increased strength; no more chest pain or wheezing; no more bloating or food hangovers; fewer mood swings & more sustained energy; improved sleep and almost no more snoring.  All of this Love being poured into my body is coming back to me in these very tangible ways, and I am truly grateful. I am excited to see how much more my body and I can do.

More of this story to come, stay tuned!

Getting My Sexy Back

UPDATE: Since writing this entry in August 2019, I have developed a much healthier & more positive relationship with food, eating, exercise, and caring for my body in general. During the course of my program, I shed over 40 lbs.* (at an average of -2 lbs per week) and watched in amazement as my body composition began to change. I felt such pride at being able to go through my daily activities without feeling exhausted, and I have been delighted to have more physical activity, strength, and endurance become a natural part of my life. More incredibly, I have experienced the release of long-held pain in my body, specifically in my feet, knees, back and chest; released long-held beliefs about my worth being tied to my appearance; and released long-held habits of self-destructive thoughts & actions.

By coupling my mindset work with a refreshed self-care plan, I have discovered JOY in moving my body again, and I have developed a kind of confidence, acceptance and deep Love for the body that I have- lumps, bumps, folds, wrinkles, spots, flabby bits and all. How freeing to realize that I don’t need to look like a Victoria’s Secret model to feel sexy, beautiful, comfortable in my skin (things I never felt when I was an actual lingerie and bikini model).

It is my sincere hope and belief that I will continue to take good care of myself by using the tools that I’ve learned and keep learning. I have a great support system now to lean on when I need to, and I have empowered myself to be in charge of taking care of my Whole-Self… body, mind, and soul.

*No matter how much I stress that the size of my body is not that important, and no matter how much I believe and teach that you don’t have to lose weight before you can love your body- people are still always fascinated by my weight loss and ask me, “How did you do it?” So here it is: I signed up for Noom. If you would like to try their program for yourself, you can click here to use my affiliate link and get yourself 20% off.

Summertime Self-Care Tips

Summertime Self-Care Tips 💖🦋

Do you have a more relaxed work schedule during the summer months? I was so grateful today for the flexibility to go enjoy some “beauty maintenance” (lash fill & mani-pedi!) before joining my sweetheart’s office dinner party tonight.

Self-care is so much deeper than a spa day; it’s really about taking the time to restore what’s on your inside. So, what if you can’t take a day off or even a few hours? Peace and restoration can be had with a quick reset. Give yourself 5, 10, 15 or even 30 mindful minutes to breathe deeply, think some pleasant thoughts, have a power nap, do some stretching/yoga poses, write about one thing you’re grateful for, drink some water, or just sit quietly & eat something nourishing.

Set aside those stressful thoughts for a little while, and give yourself a much-needed break! You’ll come back refreshed and ready to go!

💖🦋

The Bachelorette, Gaslighting, and True Love

Bachelorette Fans: Let’s Discuss 🌹

I think it’s pretty safe to say that we have all experienced (or have had someone close to us experience) falling for someone who is soooo not right for us. Someone who you are so attracted to, knowing full well that there’s just something “off” but you convince yourself that it’s not really a big deal, or justifiable, or somehow you can work through it together for Love. Someone who makes you second guess yourself, twist to conform, dumb down, or dim your light because it’s just too damn bright for them to handle.

I mean, I get it- I personally have given myself away to men like Luke P. in the past, seduced by the pretty packaging while blowing past all of the early red flags until it was too late to pull out of the relationship without a big mess.

In my 20’s -and even in my 30’s- I was so entangled in the drama that I lost myself, my voice, my power, and permanently damaged some friendships and family connections as a result. In more than one such relationship, it nearly cost me my life. The injuries I sustained were physical (some I still carry to this day), but also deeply wounding emotionally and eventually led me to seek professional guidance from a great therapist or two.

So, when I watch shows like The Bachelorette for fun and cheesiness, I can’t ignore the twisty feelings in my gut that come up when watching the Luke P. scenes. I recognize those feelings, because the truth is that our bodies hold our stories- for better or worse. We have a physical response that reflects our past traumatic experiences, reminding us that we don’t want to go through that shame and pain again.

One of the most important messages I can ever share, whether I am speaking to a room full of women, or a classroom of young people, or 1:1 in coaching sessions is this: You don’t have to change or hide your true self to earn true Love.

If you are stuck in a relationship (romantic or otherwise) where you don’t feel like you can really be yourself, I invite you to schedule a chat with me for some personal empowerment coaching. *And especially if you are in a situation that is not safe- call the domestic violence hotline at 1-800-799-7233*

Perfectly Imperfect Summer Smoothie Bowl

Hey Loves! Y’all know that I mostly talk about important healing topics like empowerment, positivity, self-love, body positivity, living a life you love and using your voice. Can’t shut me up about it and that hasn’t changed!

Occasionally I get to share some delicious healthy recipes with you, too.

If you followed me through The Cocoon: Empowered Transformation (my healthy living program for people in bigger bodies) then you already know that I am a big fan of SMOOTHIES. Mmm! So easy and a yummy way to get more fresh fruits and veggies into your awesome bod!  Well, this morning I made a delicious smoothie bowl using some of the goodies from my Imperfect Produce box.

If you aren’t familiar with Imperfect Produce, they are a wonderful organization that is working to fight food waste in America by directly shipping “imperfect” produce- fruits and veggies that have been deemed too ugly, too small, or too much (surplus) for traditional grocery stores to accept- straight to your home with minimal packaging (another environmental win!). PLUS, they donate loads of healthy food to hungry people living in all kinds of shelters.I absolutely love them!

ANYWAYYYYY….

I made this super simple, bright and delicious smoothie bowl for breakfast today and I just have to share it with you. I hope it will inspire you to add some fresh fruits and veggies to your awesome bod and if you can, try Imperfect Produce too! They are not available everywhere, but we can help them to expand and get good, perfectly imperfect foods to our hungry neighbors. Click here to use my affiliate code and if you sign up before the end of August, you can get $20 bucks off.  Win/Win.

 

Here’s my Imperfectly Perfect Summer Smoothie Bowl:

  • Squeeze the juice from 1 orange into your blender
  • Add 1 white nectarine, cut up into chunks (leave the peel on but remove the pit!)
  • Add a tablespoon of plain Greek yogurt
  • Optional: toss in a handful of your favorite leafy greens- spinach, kale, or lettuce, OR try slices of avocado!
  • Blend until smooth, pour into a pretty bowl, and top with a drop of yogurt and some granola, hemp seeds, or chopped nuts.
  • Take a picture and share on Instagram before diving in, or just stir it up and enjoy!

 

The Sometimes Vegetarian

I'm taking a break from eating meat. Initially I thought I would just give up beef, then all red meat, then white meat and seafood. It's a decision that I had been wrestling with for a good while, and knew that I would be able to easily leave meat out of my diet when I was ready, and when my body stopped craving it.

It feels really good. I still very much enjoy fresh eggs (thanks to Buffy and Ethyl, my sweet hens!) and I very much crave dairy, so I'm not ready to let those go. I'm just listening to my body and giving her what she wants & needs. Those wants & needs change over time. (I was a vegetarian for most of my 20's and well into my 30's) And it's fine, and it's okay.

I'm not a born again meatless evangelist who is going to talk down to anyone who loves to eat meat, or to anyone who is just trying to reduce their meat consumption a little without going 100% vegan. Because it actually is possible to eat at either extreme and everywhere in between without being a jerk about it. DO YOU, BOO. Just– Be kind, share yourself, and spread your light. 💖🦋

This quickie breakfast is pan fried broccolini, red potatoes, and an over-medium egg. Delicious, easy, and very satisfying!

#theblessingsbutterfly #empowermentcoach #inspiration #positiveenergy #positivevibes #personalgrowth #vegetarian #reducitarian #bodypositive #healthyeating #wholefood #freshisbest #bekind

Rad Recipes: Spicy Sweet Baked Carrot Chips

I saw these beauties and my heart went pitter-pat! I knew I had to have them. 

I took them home and cleaned them up, sliced into thin rounds, coated them in coconut oil and a mix of spices, then baked them in a hot oven for a few minutes. 

I’m pleased with how they came out, but if you want to make them crunchy-crispy, they need to be sliced paper-thin before baking. (You’ll also want to shorten the oven time unless you like them burnt!) Here’s my super simple recipe:

  • 6 carrots, washed (not peeled) and sliced into thin rounds
  • 2 tbs coconut oil, liquified 
  • Spice Mixture* to taste (I used about a tsp)
  • Sprinkle of salt (I like to fresh grind salt crystals)

Preheat oven to 425F. Meanwhile, coat the carrot coins in the coconut oil and spice mixture in a small bowl; spread carrots in single layer on parchment lined baking sheet and sprinkle with salt (I like to grind a few twists of salt). Bake for 10-15 minutes, checking to make sure they don’t burn. Serve warm for tasty side dish, or let them cool off and enjoy as a snack. So Yummy! 

*Spice Mixture: I used a little smoked paprika, a little ancho chili, and a little habanero chili- all powdered. Probably about a 1/4 tsp of each, more or less. You can play with the ratios to create your perfect blend. 

Stretch Yourself

the blessings butterfly

Stretch Yourself!

Stretch the muscles in your body;

Stretch the limits of your imagination;

Yes Love, S t r e t c h   Y o u r s e l f, and see how far you can grow. Reach a little farther if you can.

Stretch the boundaries of all that you think is possible for you to achieve, and in so stretching you will elevate yourself out of your small space of comfort, where you can harness your furthest goals and ride your wildest dreams!

stretch yourself

 

Look Up, Look Around, Look Within

As you celebrate this coming Earth Day, remember to honor our wonderful earth and all its inhabitants. Send out your Healing Thoughts, meditate on Prayers for Peace, and be open to give and receive Unconditional Love from the deep and endless Source of all Life.

Look Up. Look Around. Look Within! All of the Beauty and Magick of the universe is waiting for your embrace today!

look up

#FridayFeels FLOW

FUN FACT: I’ve worked my whole life on addressing my control-freak tendencies, but for as far as I’ve come in releasing my Kung Fu grip there is always another life lesson for me in the art of letting shit go.

Even though I practice regular “clearing” it is amazing to me how much stuff I still manage to cling to… from trinkets and knick-knacks gathering dust to outdated beliefs that seek to hold me down.

Today, I encourage you to take a step forward with me in releasing, in allowing, in letting go. What is one area of your life where you can Relax and Let Life Flow?

Stop Criticizing Yourself

Behind every harsh self-criticism is a tender soul who just wants to feel supported. You, Dear One, have heard more than your fair share of criticism throughout your life, and it’s time you put a stop to it. Instead of being your own worst critic, become your own biggest ally. Abandon the nit-picking and instead offer yourself the grace you’d gladly give to your very best friend!

I want you to realize that you are no longer bound to impossible standards of perfection, no matter what that nagging voice from the past may say. You, Dear One, were created as whole and beautiful and strong and perfect already. Own it! Heaven looks at you daily and smiles like a proud parent. Release the reigns that you have been holding so tightly to and allow yourself to be free, make mistakes, and simply do the best that you can. After all, self discovery begins when self criticism ends.

 

Stop criticizing yourself