With the holidays fast approaching, self care it vital!

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Download my self care kit here!

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection”

 – Buddha

To you give until you feel exhausted? To put everyone else first? Do you feel tired and drained? Long for a vacation but will settle for a day with no responsibilities? Then perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate your commitment to yourself.  Do you take time for you? Have a self-care ritual? Do you put yourself first by loving you?

STOP take a moment.  What does love look like to you? Is it pain and hurt? Is it peace and happiness? If it’s pain, hurt and other difficult emotions, what do you want love to look like? More like peace and happiness? Take time to reflect on how love feels and how you want love to feel.  It’s okay if your first definition of love is based on an old script.  We often base our notions of love from when we were children.  Some of us, did not have the best childhoods, so our definition of love can be skewed because we experienced love as not something pleasant but something painful and scary.  Now, is your time to take back your definition of love.  Regardless of where your first experiences of love came from, good or bad.  This is your time to define love how you want to define it.  This is love your way.  NOW. Take this new definition of self-love with you and apply it to yourself care ritual.

Self-love is loving yourself unconditionally.  Being your biggest supporter and alley. Putting yourself first.

Self-care is acts of love to nurture and honor yourself, your soul, as well as, to replenish and rejuvenate yourself.

I am a huge component of self-love and self-care.  I advocate for it all the time.  Because taking care of you is the most important thing you can do for yourself.  Because if you aren’t your best you can’t help others be their best.  If you aren’t taking care of you, your quality of life suffers.  I truly believe everyone is meant to and deserves to live life to their fullest potential, sharing their beauty and gifts with the world.  You can’t do this if your definition of love is based off an old script or you don’t care for yourself.  And self-care is not selfishness.  This word has gotten a bad rap.  I have a beautiful friend who uses the word selfish for self-care because she is putting herself first.  Selfish and greed and not caring are not synonymous. You deserve to be selfish when it comes to your livelihood.

I want you to really truly love yourself and care for yourself. Not just go through the motions.  I hear it all the time, “I got a massage this week.  I got my nails done. I went to the gym. I ate healthy.” I get it, you try.  You really do.  And these are all wonderful ways to take care of yourself. However, they can reach a deeper level.  When you look at the intention behind the massage, the nails, the gym, eating healthy.  Is it because you are told that to feel good you need self-care? Many of us, just go through the motions and then wonder why our self-care isn’t working.  Because self-care is the art of loving yourself.  Meeting yourself where you are and giving yourself what you need, by honoring yourself. When you are cold you don’t go outside and stand in the snow, no, you get a warm blanket or put on a sweater.  That is what self-care is all about.

Keys to self-care:

1.     Intention: What is the purpose of yourself care.  What service is it providing you?  Self-care is a tool to nurture your soul.  To connect to you.  To honor and love you.  What do you need today? Start here.  The intention for self-care is to give you what you need moment by moment.

2.     Permission: Give yourself permission to give yourself what you need.  To ask for what you need.  You matter.  And deserve to feel fabulous.

3.     Honoring: Honor yourself and what you need.  Don’t down play it or second guess it.  How often have you needed a nap and instead pushed through feeling exhausted and taken advantage of?  Take your nap, you’ll feel better and perform better.

4.     Ritual: Create a ritual around self-care.  Make it a habit. Check in with yourself daily.  What do you need today?  How can you honor you today? How can you make yourself care a sacred ritual that honors and fulfills you on a soul level?

Remember self-care is the act of self-love.  You deserve your love more than anyone else!  When you love you, life gets better. 

What is your favorite self-care rituals?  If you are struggling with self-love or care, please contact me, I’d love to help. 

Falling into Fall

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I love the fall!  Changing leaves, cooler weather, scary movies, Halloween, sweaters, knee high socks, hot cups of tea and coffee.  The chill in the air that causes us to embrace our inner warmth.  However, fall can be a difficult time, as the days shorten and become cooler, we have less warmth and light in which to play.  This is a time to turn inward, to follow our own light. 

There is an ebb and flow.

Demeter (Persephone's mother) and Sedna are two goddesses that illuminate our ability to embrace our inner winter. 

When Hades tricked Persephone to join him in the underworld, Demeter, goddess of harvest (she is the one who brought fertile lands to the world.)   fell into the deep depression, mourning the loss of her daughter.  Not only did Demeter fall into depression but the land as well.  Nothing grew and the land became barren.  She embraced her sadness, she allowed herself to weep.  When her daughter returned she rejoiced left her world of retreat and once again the land was fertile, Growth flourished. 

Sedna's story is tragic one.  She was picky and could not decide on a suitor, this frustrated her father to no end.  Until finally they were tricked by a bird (dressed as a human).  The bird took Sedna and when she discovered the truth, she called to her father her rescue her.  Well, the bird did not like that and while Sedna and her father where trying to flee by boat, the bird called to his friends and they began to attack the boat.  Sedna's father fearing for his own life, tossed her overboard.  She clutched to the side of the boat, so he chopped off her fingers, she grabbed a hold again and so he chopped off her hands.  Sedna sank to the bottom of the ocean.  Her fingers and hands became the sea animals.  It is said that she controls the sea animals available for hunters and fisherman.  She is also queen of the souls.  She reminds us that out of tragedy and darkness comes life and rebirth.

 

Make time to honor your inner process.

Meditate on how you are like Demeter or Sedna. On what is going on in your life. What needs to be healed. Where you are growing.

Journal. Write about your life. What you struggle with. Your pains, sorrows, joys and happiness.

Pay attention to your dreams.  Our dreams is how our subconscious mind communicates with our conscious mind. What are you processing in your sleep?

Spend time in nature. Notice the changing landscape. Watch the wildlife. Feel the difference in the air. Experience the outdoors with your five senses. 

Take time to dive into your shadows. 

The Art of Using your Dreams for Guidance

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Dreams are our portal to our souls.  Dreams can provide massive insight into our lives.  You might not realize it but while you are dreaming, your dreams are answering the questions you pounder and ask while you are awake. Often times in the language of the subconscious, but with some practice you'll be decoding your dreams and receiving the guidance you asked for. 

How do your dreams guide you?

1.     Help you solve a problem. Our dreams play out what is going on in our lives.  Sometimes the dream is just processing the daily events and other times the dream is guiding you.  Look for clues in your dreams.  

2.     Provide you with insight into your fears. We often push our fears aside because we don’t like working with them. When you work with your fears, you set yourself free.  Our dreams play on our fears.  When you see your fears come to life in your dreams, you have the power to dissolve them.

3.     Help you with your creativity. The abstractness of dreams can be a creativity catalyst.  Sit with the abstractness, allow the images to become your muses.

4.     Connect you to your guides and ancestors. Our dreams are a place where our guides and ancestors come to visit.  Listen to the advice you receive while you are dreaming.

5.     Give you a look at your shadow. Your shadow is the part of you push away.  Our shadow can be found in what we dislike in others.  Shadow loves dreams because it can come forward and be seen. 

Use the tips below to start to decode your dreams, as well as, print of this handy dream interpretation play sheet.

Before you go to bed, state your intention, “Tonight I want insight into_____”

When you wake write down your dream and then...

Tell the dream using your five senses, as well as, your feelings.

Don't reach for the dream guide book or web page just yet. Take time to free associate different images for your own personal meaning.  Then you can look up the universal meanings and see if they apply to your dream, enhancing the message. 

Happy Dreaming!

Self Care Tips

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Self care is vital to your wellbeing.  Taking time for yourself can rejuvenate you, as well as, help you to feel better and experience more joy!

Here are some self care ideas.  Explore, have fun, and try to do at least one a day! (Want to print it out? Click here).

Move your body-

movement not only helps you reconnect to yourself, but sweating can release endorphins, improving your mood.  Here are some ways you can get moving:

·         Yoga

·         Dance- by yourself or with others, you might even take a dance class

·         Run/jog/walk

·         Play with your kids

·         Play with your pets

·         Do a workout video

·         Go to the gym

·         Hola hoop

Sometimes you might find that you just need to reconnect to yourself and take some much needed you time

·         Take a hot bath

·         Get a massage

·         Get a mani or pedi

·         Read a book

·         Slowly and mindfully drink a cup of tea or coffee, really savoring it

·         Meditate

          Listen to music

          sing

·         Take slow deep breathes four counts in four counts out, see if you can make it past ten

·         Watch the sunset/sunrise

·         Sit in nature

·         Go to a museum and sit with a favorite piece of art

·         What’s your favorite way to reconnect to yourself?

You might need to laugh, when we laugh we instantly feel better and lighter

·         Watch something funny

·         Read something funny

·         Try some yoga laughter

·         Go to a comedy club

·         What’s your favorite way to bring laughter into your life?

You might need nature. 

Nature helps us to feel grounded and connected.

·         Go for a walk outside

·         Visit a park

·         Go to the mountains

·         Sit by a stream

·         Go to the beach

·         Go for a hike

Supportive people

Let’s not forget our friends and family.  Having a supportive group of people that know you and love you is vital to your healing and mental health.  Having at least one person you can turn to is fabulous.  Sometimes, we just need to talk it out, get it out, share it and release it. 

You know what is best for you and what feels right in the moment.  If you are still struggling with strong emotions that feel overwhelming reach out to someone who can help.  Your therapist, a trusted friend or family member.  You do not have to go through this on your own.  You have people that love support you and want to see you healthy, happy and living life to your fullest!

Your mission and manifesto

Often times in life, we feel lost, lacking direction or as if we are wandering without purpose.  As humans, we like to have purpose, focus and direction. A personal mission statement and manifesto can provide you with all of that and more.  Your personal mission statement can become your compass.  And your manifesto your map. They can be your light in the darkness. It can be a reminder of what you want to accomplish and who you are.

To help, I've created this PDF

We often create New Year resolutions and many people create their personal mission statement and/or manifesto at the same time.  However, I feel fall is perfect time to relook at, revamp, create or recreate both or one or the other. The fall tends to be a time of inward reflection and introspection.  A wonderful time to delve into you and what you are all about.

When creating your personal mission statement, ask yourself:

            What’s your legacy? How do you want to be remembered?

            What are you values and morals? What do you stand for? What is important to you? Are

            there codes you live by?

            How do you want people to describe you when you aren’t around?

            What you want in life? What are your goals?

Take your time.  Write it. Leave it. Go back to it. Sleep on it. Meditate about it. Check in with your support team.  Check in with your guides. Check your Akashic records. Find inspiration on the web, in books and in nature.

Here's an example of my personal mission statement:

  

  

A wonderful addition to your mission statement is a personal manifesto.  Your manifesto can focus more on your goals and what you really want in life. Tap into the emotion.  This is how you experience life.  How you want to feel. The goodness you spread in the world.

Questions to ask:

            How do I want to feel?

            How do I want to be seen?

            What do I have to offer and give?

            How do I want to experience life?

            What do I want to create?

Here's an example of my manifesto:

Remember, your mission statement is the end destination; your manifesto is the map.

Now put this where you can see them every day.  Decorate them.  Collage them. Put them on your vision board. Celebrate them.  Share them. Celebrate them. You can share yours with me on social media @forwardkindheart on Facebook and Instagram. I’d love to hear and see what you create.