Monday, July 25, 2016


Yesterday I found out that a friend of mine joined "The Club". This is not a club that meets weekly to have drinks and play cards, this is not a club with dues, or officers. No, this is a club that nobody wants to belong to. It's the club of broken hearts and betrayal.
Because I am a student and teacher of philosophy I spend a lot of time pondering things. Yesterday when I heard the news my heart hurt. It often takes being in the club to want to be around other people in the club. People in the club are often sad and vulnerable and angry, especially in the beginning, and in the middle and not as often a few years later. Not exactly good times for the most part. The sucky thing about being in the club as a veteran is that you know there isn't much you can do but say "I'm sorry Honey, I love you and it really sucks".  It just has to play out.

When I heard the news about this I immediately thought of the Kleshas and how for thousands of years wise people have known and tried to help us understand our suffering. When I am faced with a tough situation that brings suffering I ask myself "What Klesha applies to this situation?" If it's pain from a fight with my partner it may be all five, however primarily I may realize that my first pain seems to be from my attachment to my partner and my fear of losing my partner and the life we have and the life I thought we would have in the future. Then as I go through them I can recognize and start to deconstruct my pain and in doing so one by one I begin to process my pain. 
Though no one wants to belong to the club of betrayal, or the club of having a terminal illness, or a chronic illness, a disabled child, etc... often times we have no say. The universe puts us in these situations and you have no choice but to deal with it.
The silver lining is this, finding other people in the club that you can talk to and process with who offer you love and support can be very healing. They have walked the path and often you will find love in the most unexpected places.

And at the end of the day what matters is love. Not necessarily romantic love but the love from a friend, the love of self , the love a kind stranger, the love of your animals, children, family, and so on. Regardless of how much you hurt try to find your club members and get the love and support you need. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Nuts about Healthy Living 

For National Men's Health Month the folks at challeneged me to share some tips and this graphic with our readers.Since I teach holistic health I thought this tied in good with the work I do.
I recently accepted a position as a Stress Management Specialist in a Medical Wellness Clinic. We promote holistic healthy living to heal disease. Now not only do we promote it we teach it and it's been proven to work.
 The fact is we are multifaceted human beings and just like the legs on a chair if one leg is broken then the chair is out of balance. It has been scientifically proven that lifestyle has a direct link to your overall health and can even reverse and heal many illnesses.

So what does Holistic Healthcare look like:

1. Eat a plant based diet. If you eat animal products then try to reduce how much you eat. Little changes can start to make a big difference. Things like nuts and seeds are a great way to get plant based protein. Start with one healthy meal a day and add nuts as one of your snacks, go to for more ideas.

2. Get proper sleep, rest and meditate. Meditation changes your brain and can help your nervous system quite down so you can sleep better. One little trick I do is take the timer and set it for 5 to 15 minutes and mediate. There are many resources online to help you meditate. One very simple way is to sit comfortably and close your eyes and see what comes up, when thoughts or feeling arise then name them, such as "That is a doing thought, that is an angry thought" then allow that thought to float away like a cloud. This teaches you to become a witness observer of your thoughts which can help train your brain to control runaway anxiety. You learn you are not your thoughts.
Also eat more nuts as they have tryptophan and melatonin that help aid with sleep.

3. Get proper exercise. Try for twenty to thirty minutes a day. If this sounds like a lot to you then set small achievable goals. Often I will just tell myself I have time to walk 10 minutes on the treadmill. Find something fun to do and keep doing it. For me it's yoga and walking. Yoga stretches your lungs, massages your heart, helps circulation to drain lymph and bring oxygen to your organs and muscles.
And eating nuts helps you get the protein you need to build lean muscles.

4. Think Positive and find Community.  Find something positive everyday that you can focus on. Some ideas are to get a Pinterest account and find inspirational quotes to read. Hang out with positive people. Be mindful of your words and try to spend one whole day only saying positive things. My grandma used to tell me "If  you don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all." Do things that connect you to others be it volunteering at the Humane Society, going to a spiritual center, or going to yoga class. We need community and support to be healthy, research has proven this.
The magnesium and zinc in nuts and seeds is also been shown to help with depression.

5. Proper Breathing. We come into this world on an inhale and we leave this world on an exhale. Our bodies take in oxygen when we inhale and expel carbon dioxide when we exhale. We can control our blood pressure and our nervous system simply by learning some simple breathing techniques. Here is an easy one. Sit or stand tall. Inhale and lift your arms out to the sides and up above your head with your arms in line with your ears, fully expand your lungs as you do this. Pause at the end of the inhale. As you exhale close your arms back down like big wings and bring your hands together at the center of your chest as if you were going to pray. Repeat two more times. This stretches your lungs, massages your heart and calms your nervous system. I teach this method to all my clients and students. It's the one thing they all tell me they do when I ask about their practice. It will change your life. You can do it without hands when you want to be inconspicuous.

Have a beautiful day and take care of you!