Spirals

Happy Sunday Friends!

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As always, life is getting in the way of finding space to write – it’s hard to get into a routine with all the changes. I try to be the most positive version of myself at all times but it has been really hard as of late. Before the move, before the new job, & before my recent diagnosis (which I will get into), I was in a healthy & comfortable routine which now is slipping through my fingers. I’m reminded of how stressful it felt to commute over an hour each way and how resentful it feels to loose that time. More than that, I’m feeling like there is no time for me & the things I love: cooking, writing, running, meditating, personal practice, & being with my fur baby. I thought I could handle everything and just take it in stride, but sometimes, it feels like I’m spiraling.

To backtrack a bit, I was diagnosed with Neurofibromatosis at the end of June. I have long suspected I had the genetic disorder – when I was about eleven my parents were told I likely I had the disease but the diagnosis didn’t come until two decades later. So now, I have to figure out what’s going on with my body and what it means for my future offspring. I apparently can’t have children naturally & can only go the IVF route if I want to carry my own. Not to sound insensitive to mothers everywhere who’ve gone that route but I never thought it would be me – to be more specific, I’d rather adopt than put myself through the emotional and financial hardship. I’m trying my best not to worry before there is something to worry about but the brain is spiraling.IMG_1592I’m not sharing any of this to garner sympathy, in fact, that is exactly what I don’t want. I am sharing because I feel like we all keep too much shit to ourselves in an effort avoid shame and judgement. I spend a lot of my time trying to put on the face that everyone else wants to see. It is so much easier to disappoint myself than to let others down or make them feel uncomfortable.

What if we all were just a little more honest about everything we’re going through and have had to handle? What if we took down the veil and were vulnerable? It may scare the shit out of me but the more honest I am, the more I can connect with others and feel like I’m not alone.

IMG_1612.jpgBefore the pity party pours in, I had a wonderful time cooking & spending time with friends yesterday (Paella curtesy of my amazing friend Alvaro). I’m reading a bit on the train when I was able to get a seat, & I keep a gratitude journal in an effort to stay grounded and be reminded of the positives. Life can sometimes be a struggle but I am confident the moments of pain, fear, and hardship make the shining moments that much brighter. I don’t want to sugar coat my life, not anymore: I haven’t been lying or sharing ‘alternative facts’ but I don’t share the not so sunny stuff – I won’t do that anymore. Life is messy and I hope y’all are ready for it!

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

 

 

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Wellness Wednesday

Hey There Friends!

IMG_0541Are we all making it over the hump? This week started busy and will end just the same…story of life I guess, right?!? Anyway, since today is the last Wednesday in March this will be the last installment of my sleep series. Since I have covered most of the basics, I thought I would hit one more – the morning routine – waking up in the healthiest way to start your day. 7381063We’re all guilty of hitting the snooze button a few too many times in a desperate attempt to get more sleep, only to end up rushing out the door and jolting your body into a panicked start to the day – no bueno! Below are the five things, no matter what, I do every morning to ensure I have a healthy, happy start to the day.

  1. No Snooze – set your alarm for when your realistically need to get up, and get up. Place your phone or alarm clock far enough away from your bed that you have to physically get up to shut it off.
  2. Drink a tall glass of warm or room temperature water. If you’re a tea or coffee drinker this is the perfect time to start the kettle, french press, pot, whatever…
  3. Clean Routine – whether you like to shower in the morning or not, take time to thoroughly wash your face, neck & check, brush your teeth & hair, as a signal to your body that its time to refresh & restart.
  4. Make your bed and tidy up – I guess this one is a bit of a personal thing but its amazing how much better it feels to come home to a clean and tidy home (or at least bedroom/bathroom).
  5. Keep things quiet & screen free for 30 minutes if possible. With the exception of shutting off your alarm, try to avoid the TV, iPad, computer, and cell phone while you’re getting your day started – the world can wait another 30 minutes.

I hope these and the last few weeks of tips can help you maximize your energy throughout your day & keep you feeling happy/healthy!

 

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

Wellness Wednesday

Happy Hump Day!

FullSizeRender (20) We’re half way through the week and I hit a bit of a road block today. Well, at first I thought it was but then I realized it was just another opportunity to practice…practice putting my ego in check. I had planned to post something else today but after this morning’s experience, I had to make this week’s Wellness Wednesday about putting your ego in check. ww6-1Soooo, I subbed a class for one of our veteran teachers who happens to be leaving at the end of the week. She has quite a loyal following and we’re all very happy for her but sad to see her go…ANYWAY: one of our students came into class this morning, looked at me, and said “you’re teaching?!?!” sighing as I confirmed what seemed to be her greatest disappointment to date. Oh course I immediately made it about myself, texting Phil and my family about how shitty it felt to have a student say that to you right before you have to teach a class. Realizing I obviously needed to get out of that mindset I took a deep breath and told myself, it’s not about you, and really, it wasn’t. This student was looking forward to saying goodbye to her teacher today and that was why she was disappointed NOT because I was teaching…we in fact had an awesome class (her words)!

My point is everyone does this!! We all have these moments where we let our ego and insecurity get the better of us AND its toxic! So love yourself, let things that aren’t about you stop affecting your ability to shine bright, YOU ARE AWESOME!

 

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

Wellness Wednesday

Happy hump day my fellow wellness lovers!

I hope you’re all in the midst of enjoying another wonderful week! Things have been crazy busy around here and I couldn’t be happier about it. Even though things are quite chaotic, it’s all positive and it is all in the name of advancing myself, my career, and my relationships. It’s during times like these when I find it most important to leave a little space – allow for the ability to reflect, breathe and soak in the moment.

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That’s why this week, Wellness Wednesday is dedicated to leaving some space – in your schedule, in your mind, in your heart – for what comes up. When I reflect on where I was about a year ago and where I am today, it is truly unbelievable, except it can’t be because it actually happening 😉 !

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A year ago (a little more if I’m being true to the actual date) I was teaching yoga a few nights a week, as my third job, in the basement of an apartment building in center city. There were about 3-5 people in class and 1 was always Phil 🙂 haha! If you had asked me then whether I’d be teaching full time now I probably would have said no…not for a few years, but here I am!!

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I love what I do for a living and I feel so lucky to share my passion with a room full of students each and every day! It’s really easy to get wrapped up in taking each step that we forget the path from which we came; so remember, leave a little space for what comes up!

 

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

 

Wellness Wednesday

Happy Hump Day Friends!

IMG_0554I am over the moon and so excited for today you have no idea! In a few hours I will be giving my first corporate wellness presentation here in San Francisco. I have been prepping like a mad woman while balancing the family visit and thought it would be fun to share some of the tips I plan to talk about today.IMG_0569Since the target audience is modern business professionals I’ve included 10 tips to energize your day without an energy drink or excessive coffee consumption.

  • Energize your Day
    • Try a mid-day work out to keep energy up and avoid that 3pm slump
    • Have some chocolate! Dark chocolate has caffeine but also cognitive and mood boosting properties from Flavonoids
    • Believe it or not your mom was right: some fresh air will do you some good, so try to get outside for 10-20 minutes.
    • Sit up Straight! Slouching can cause fatigue whereas sitting straight helps comfortably support your frame with less effort (plus it gives you a little confidence boost which is nice)
    • Leave your desk to eat as often as possible – including snacking if you can help it.
      • the body needs to know its ‘fuel time’
    • Opt for complex carbs that break down slowly and keep your blood sugar regulated
      • always drink plenty of water too
    • Try to listen to music at your desk or pump it through the speakers to boost mood, focus and energy
    • Sipping on green tea in the afternoon after your lunch has been known to improve cognitive function, aid digestion, keep you fuller longer, and fuel your body with antioxidants and flavonoids.
    • Chia seeds, especially when paired with water are proven to keep you full and fueled for the day
    • Red is associated with confidence and winning…brighter colors can also keep you more alert and awake.  

I hope you find ways to incorporate one, or some, of these tips to help keep you energized, the healthy way!

 

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

Wellness Wednesday

Happy Hump Day!

We’re mid-way through another wonderful week and I for one am beaming today! There is a lot to be grateful for everyday but today especially because my sister and parents are coming to visit!! That, and things are falling into place more and more with my career and our live’s here in San Francisco.yoga-photography workshop-10 In the coming weeks there are lots of exciting things happening! Everything to come has to do with growing in my career, so I couldn’t be more excited that I have time with some of my family beforehand; which brings me to today’s Wellness Wednesday topic, balance. Work-Life-Balance1When I mean balance, I don’t mean the kind I do on my head or in the picture above 😉 I mean happily and effectively managing all the different aspects of life. I used to get this tunnel vision when it came to the different aspects of my life: I would focus on whatever I wasn’t happy about and figure out a way to fix it or make it bend my way. Sometimes I would succeed but most of the time I wouldn’t and I would end up morwheele unhappy than when things started. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I was really able to make a sift…things just were not working. Now, my focus is on finding time for the little things, working smarter, and allowing myself downtime. I know as life continues and children are added to the picture, things will get even more exciting and the challenge of balancing things out might become more tricky but in the end, its ALL doable. Whatever your priorities in life, you’ve got time for all of them and the stuff you want to do too, it just takes a bit of balance. If you’re not sure where to start, begin by taking 5-10 minutes to be silent, alone, and just see what pops up.

 

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

Wedding Planning Revelations

Hey there friends!

We are leaving for the east coast in less than 10 days and I am itching with anticipation. All the last minute wedding details are coming together little by little and we’re doing our best to stay distracted…there is only so much more we can do from San Francisco, the rest will be waiting for us when we get home. This weekend we’re keeping ourselves busy with a trip to wine country Saturday and a Sunday full of teaching yoga and watching football! sfThis week we’re tackling a few things like getting motion sickness medication for our honeymoon, finalizing menu choices for the rehearsal dinner, confirming travel arrangements, etc… but it’s really important to have a non-wedding planning weekend. Especially with last week’s confession Phil and I both really wanted to shift our perspective…leave the worrying to everyone else, this is our day!!!UTAdmittedly, I kind of feel like a kid playing hooky from school skipping out on all this potential wedding planning time but lets get real, what is the point if you’re not enjoying it…am I right?!?!? We’re entering the home stretch and there is no way we’re gonna do anything but enjoy our wedding day!

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

Wednesday Wedding Confessions

Happy Hump Day Friends!

I hope everyone is making it through the week with a smile on their face! Phil and I sat down to dinner last night and started talking about our favorite topic, the wedding. During the talk of payments, confirmations, timelines, etc.. we both looked at each other without saying a word, we knew what the other was thinking: neither of us are particularly looking forward to our wedding at this point.

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While that might sound terrible to put in writing or say out loud, I believe honesty is the best policy, so I’m not taking it back. Look, the reality is our wedding day will be amazing, and we’re both genuinely looking forward to being man and wife but this whole ‘event’ is just A LOT and we’re drained! There are less than 25 days left until we say ‘I do’ and we still have welcome bags to arrange, seating charts to do, finalizing the gifts for everyone, making sure the timeline for the day of is properly arranged, a marriage license to procure, and at least a dozen other things to get done. w2

We agreed we were not going to allow the wedding to stress us out anymore but now its not even stressful its just exhausting….which I guess is why we feel the way we do. We keep hoping/praying we’re not going to let a trivial detail ruin the day. We are terrified that all this time, money and energy from so many people will somehow/someway get ruined, so instead of being excited for what will be the happiest day of our life, we’re just dreading it. w1

In our heart we know things will work out but we can’t help but feel the way we do! I know there is no way we’re the only couple who’ve felt this way during the wedding planning process, so I wanted to put it out there for anyone who might be feeling the same!

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

Thursday Thoughts

Today officially begins the one month countdown until Phil and I say ‘I Do’ and we’re both so excited! We got a lot of the little details decided over the weekend and we’re moving full steam ahead! We did manage some leisure time too – I love spending casual time with friends, enjoying the outdoors, and sharing delicious food/wine. We had such a great time at Vie playing bocce and tasting the new vintages, rooftop grilling in SOMA with friends, and enjoying the sunshine that we almost didn’t fit in our ride over the Golden Gate Bridge…but I wasn’t going to let that happen!!photoSharing some private time, just Phil and I, that didn’t revolve around work, the wedding, our finances, the future etc.. was so special!! We were able to take in the majesty of the mountains and the sweeping views of San Francisco, which was nothing short of magical…plus, feeling the wind blowing against my face and getting some great cardio didn’t hurt either!SanFran200605-201While it may seem trivial to some, time together is invaluable for us – both as individuals and as a couple. Inner peace is a difficult thing to achieve when you exist in this fast paced world of ours but often its the most important thing we need. Having time to decompress from life’s obligations, and do so with your partner, is one of the best ways I inch closer to that internal state of peace. Maybe for others it’s time alone with a good book, a stroll in the woods, sharing a meal, etc… the possibilities are endless and around every corner, you just have to find yours.

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂

Thursday Thoughts

Hey there friends! Can you believe it’s Thursday already? I feel like this week has flown by but you won’t hear any complaints from this girl, the sooner the weekend is here, the better! As I have shared, the cross country transition has been challenging – exciting but scary and overwhelming too! Phil and I will continue to face hurdles with our transition through the coming months but that is totally okay – we have each other, we’re in a beautiful city with lots to see and explore, we have a roof over our heads, clothing on our backs, food in the fridge, and we’re about to start our lives together…life is good. Now, I can’t say I feel like that all the time but I am working on it, and today, things feel possible!photo-13One area of study during my 200hr teacher training was Philosophy and we spent a fair amount of time looking into the Yamas and the Niyamas – these are basically the don’t and do’s of yoga and they comprise 2 of the 8 limbs of yoga. For me, focusing on one specific Niyama, Santosha or contentment/optimism of self, is helping keep things in perspective. Just like any virtue, Santosha isn’t necessarily something you achieve but rather something you’re constantly striving for/working on throughout your lifetime.photo-14Since it felt like I was in a rut, focusing on negative things for a little while, I wanted to find something that would help bring things back around, and for me it’s this idea of Santosha – this contentment in yourself & your surroundings, this acceptance of others and where you exist in the world is powerful. My goal, is to find Santosha each day, if only briefly, and remind myself that life is good & things are possible!

’til next time, keep smiling! 🙂