We all need to channel our inner angel. Open your heart and release the modern day stressors that follow us and separate us from our own inner guardian angels...
Balancing being the primary caregiver and growing a business and writing books is, well... it's tough to say the least.
Identify Your Needs
I've realized lately that I NEED time to be focused and productive. It is the reason I started a business in the first place! But even though I knew that was behind starting a business, I see that the opportunity to do my work in a focused, UNinterrupted environment is really a core need I have... and one having young kids who are only in school part of the day really impedes upon!
I struggle with how best to use my childfree time... do I take care of myself? Do I run errands (that are way easier on my own of course)? Do I try to buckle down and get my work done?
And of course, when I'm talking about just a few hours per day, those hours go FAST!!! Just making sure I exercise take up a third of that time!!! And, exercise, I've come to realize, is also a non-negotiable!!!
Of course as someone who has a lot of ambition for both my family and my business..and my self! It is really hard to take care of all three to the level that I desire.
Oh, especially without cutting into my sleep!!!!!!
Yes, it's complicated.
Observe How Things Affect You
I definitely don't have all the answers. What I find is that I can only do some of those at once.
There are time I cut into my sleep, and then realize that makes me feel shitty.
There are times I quit exercising, and then realize that makes me feel shitty.
There are times I do not focus on work, and then realize that makes me feel shitty
There are time I don't do self care, and then realize that makes me feel shitty!
The best plan I have right now is to let go of the crap I really don't care about - no clean house, no fancy meals - just tried and true recipes, no big parties. (Don't get me wrong... I LOVE PARTIES!!! I just have to put hosting them on hold for a while... I do a pool party once a year in the summer, and that is easy since all everyone does is hang out by the pool, but otherwise, they have been temporarily arrested.)
And then, honestly, I cycle through my other priorities... so I don't ignore one area entirely, I just give it up a little until I need to bring it back.
I walk instead of doing classes (until I crave the strength and yoga).
I work less (until I want to work more).
I eat cheese and crackers and carrots and dip (until I need something more grown up).
I stay up a bit too late (until I get crabby and go to bed earlier).
Well, you get the idea!
And Reality Check...
I know this isn't necessarily the most inspiring approach, but it's the most realistic. Sometimes we just need a reality check. There is so much bullshit out there about how you can have it all...and I think you can. But you can't necessarily have it all at one time, and that's ok.
Enjoy the Ebb and Flow
It's actually one reason why writing my books has been so awesome for me right now! I love the cycle of book writing. I do the writing - that usually comes in bursts of inspiration and the journals are usually written in a week or two! (My longer books sometimes come in several periods of inspiration spread out over time.)
Then, there is a period of handing a lot of work over to others... that feels great! The content is written, and it starts to transform into an actual book with the help of others!
Then the tedious finalization... I look forward to someday outsourcing this, but for now I want to have the final say so I have to be part of the last steps :)
Then... the launch! This gets exciting again and so I'm re-energized!!!
Then... time to rest... before I take on another project :)
This is something I've been thinking about lately.
Old & Sexy?
This is a subject that I've been grappling with. Ever since I had kids I've felt... well, old. I know I'm not really *that* old, but something has changed.
A big part of what I realized was going on is that I am morning my maidenhood... our culture, our society worships being thin... but it also worships youth.
The truth is that I actually thought I was immune to the media messaging. I thought I was "above" worrying about how I looked. But the truth was that I was young, and I was on the lean side naturally. My struggles with weight were short lived, as I was forced to come to terms with my emotional eating a young age.
The truth is that I was not immune AT ALL. In fact, a lot of the messaging was deeply ingrained, and as I near 40, I come face to face with my wrinkles, my squishy, jiggly body (not youthful and taut), and it's really difficult.
What Women Are Feeling As They Reach 40
Sadly, I'm not alone. It feels very lonely to feel sad that you don't meet media's messaging about who you should be. But it's not lonely. In fact it's pretty damn highly populated over here. I speak to woman after woman who deals with these issues, whether it's weight or age or both.
Personally, I have a really high level of awareness around these emotions and thoughts, and I manage them pretty well. And it's still a work in progress! It HAS to be - we are constantly exposed to bullshit in the media that tries to tell us what need to look like!
I work with some of the most amazing women. They are ambitious, manage a full and rich life, and I can tell you many of their amazing achievements... and I can also unfortunately tell you of how they struggle.
Let me share what some of these awesome woman have told me...
I’ve been struggling since my second child... I obsess about how my body looks... not necessarily with my weight...if I lose some weight, I think I’ll feel better... I need a positive outlook. I’m not skinny. I always had a belly... I never felt like I needed to lose weight, but always thought, "A few pounds less and I’d look better and feel better."
The good news is that P.L. also had an amazing sense of gratitude! This was a saving grace that we focused on as her personal strength!
P.L. had a humorous approach to making sure her mindset was top notch:
I don't know if it's feasible; I need mental acceptance, if I can see myself as attractive at size 14, I’ll take it! What's more feasible? Get more in my head and change my outlook... or lose the weight?
With this in mind, she prioritized her goals of body movement and made sure she built up her confidence with daily movement alongside a personal affirmation practice!
We Feel Invisible
Here's one that is so often repeated in nearly the exact same sentiment...
I’m invisible, nobody sees me anymore.
I think almost any woman approach 40 and definitely in her 50s or 60s or beyond has felt this. This is the result of a three fold situation!
1) Men from ages 15-75 pay attention to 25 year old women at disproportionate rates. Not much we can do about that, but they do notice women of all ages, I promise.
I had about a year when I was obsessed with my wrinkles!!! But after my experiment with botox, I was literally EXCITED to get my wrinkles back!!! Haha!
My client P.L. said the same thing:
It's the youth obsession. I would never consider body enhancement... but now I see myself considering it!!!!! Thinking it!!!!
Luckily she knew it was her environment talking and not her real self. She, like me and many of my clients, used mindset work to retrain her brain out of these self harming thoughts and think positive thoughts about earning her wrinkles instead!
2) We stop going putting ourselves out into the world in a way that attracts attention. We aren't dressing the same, we aren't going to the same places, and most of all we aren't putting our energy out there in that way. We're busy, and probably tired. The answer here is deep self care and some time being a bit naughty with fun girlfriends!
E.D. identified this issue for herself:
I have a hard time to carve out time for myself. I don't have much me time... I’m always running out of time; food is the last thing I put on my schedule... water, coffee, toast, I used to eat smoothies in the morning... I don't have time to make it. I don't have time... I need to schedule ten minute to eat something healthy.
What was her answer? This is where my logistical approach to meal planning and preparation (sometimes I call them pre-decisions) was the way to save the day. She treated every day like a work day and was able to prepare her food in advance and start making these changes!
3) We lose our confidence. This is a result of f*cked up societal messaging, but we CAN overcome it, just like P.L. did!!!
I have felt this, and so has A.Y. She said:
I want validation with myself! I want to be happy. It's hard. How I feel strong at work, in my relationship, in my sex life... right now it's not happening...
She really called it out! When we feel bad about ourselves it affects EVERYTHING in our lives! And when we can boost ourselves up into a place of confidence, it also affects everything in our lives... in a good way! Even our problems become more manageable and we are able to act from a place of confidence in crisis.
How Our Inner Goddess Can Help Us
I like to look at our lives through the lens of the inner goddess. In many stories, there is one character (or sometimes several characters) who represent the arc of a woman's life: Baby, child, maiden, mother, grandmother, crone. Most of our adult life happens as maiden, mother, and grandmother.
But unfortunately our media tells us that the only one of those worth celebrating is the maiden. So of course it's a bitter pill to swallow when we leave that phase of our life behind. And it's ok to mourn the loss of your maiden (which happens more with age than actual motherhood, though both can trigger it). But it's not ok to stay in mourning of this transition.
And the truth is that, just like the stories, we actually have all of those inside of us all of our life, it's just that we don't have access to them. But once you've lived the various parts, you can actually tap into them easier. I'll be honest, it's swimming upstream because of how the media portrays women. But it's time.
It's time to embrace the mother and the grandmother. It's time to allow for love, sensuality, and yes even sexuality to belong to a woman at any age! It's time to celebrate our wisdom and our wrinkles as hard earned badges that we can and should be proud of!
Is old the new sexy? I don't know, but it definitely should be!
Do you want some personalized help to channel your inner goddess for balance and wellbeing? Check out my Inner Goddess Habit Coaching!
How getting in touch with your inner queen goddess can help you boost your confidence, lose weight, give up the yoyo approach to health, and make sustainable changes that last!
Get your copy of the "Emotional Eating Detox" guided journal AND get free support videos as well!
Hera in the Myths
Hera is usually represented as somewhat jealous and vengeful. However, it is interesting because she is most often in reaction to her husband having an affair with other goddesses or mortal.... not exactly a fair context to view her in.
Hera knows what she wants. When you channel your inner Hera, you learn to trust yourself and to know what YOU want, too! By becoming more mindful you can learn to trust yourself and build you own inner confidence.
Hera in Your Life
Channelling your inner Hera is the opposite of going on a diet! It is using mindfulness to KNOW what you want, and using mindful eating to make sure you are not using food as a short term fix for other issues.
Hera in Balance
When HERA is IN balance, you can experience both her feminine and masculine power, essentially your own intuition AND your confidence in going for what you want! You know what you want, and you trust yourself. With food, you can APPROPRIATELY enjoy food and indulgences alongside other healthy foods AND good company, and your inner Hera can do her job in peace.
Sign up for the "Emotional Eating Detox," eat the foods you love AND channel your inner Hera!
I wanted to share a few books that I have loved over the years! These are books that I have been going to for years, and keep enjoying them every time. They go right in line with my forthcoming book, The Kitchen Witch, and will inspire you in ritual and cooking alike!
This book gives many specific recipes and instructions on how to make a wide variety of teas, for health and pleasure. I mean who doesn't love tea? (Dude, if you are saying "me," then it might be hard to be friends!)
Healing With Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford
This encyclopedic book on healing is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine. Okay, it may not really have an "inspiring" feel - it's a bit of a tome, but it is SO full of useful information and is like an intro course to healing with whole foods based on the philosophies of health in Chinese Medicine.
The Language of Flowers
This is a very small book, but lists the traditional European meanings of various flowers and plants. It is so fun to read and get inspiration on what the flowers say when you pick them or give them!
The Herbal Healing Deck
I'm obsessed with this deck of oracle cards! I LOVE the artwork and the insights are always helpful. It's been a powerful way for me to connect with plant energy and think about plant spirits and just connect with plants! I'm not much of a green thumb, so I'd rather think of them in their wild habitat! Haha.
The Aromatherapy Handbook
This is the best resource I have found on uses for essential oils. The book details various ways to use essential oils for therapeutic aromatherapy, as well health, cleaning, and gift giving, among others. It is an awesome reference book and makes it so easy to make healthy oils and beauty products.
Alegra Loewenstein is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. By generating these funds - at no cost to you - she can continue to offer free and fun content on her site!
Thanks to everyone who took my survey!
I've removed it from this blog post now, since the survey has closed.
After having kids my hormones have been super out of whack.
I slept poorly (even long after my kids were sleeping through the night), & I had painful periods.
(What a weird word, "period," but I have to admit even though every woman menstruates, I still find talking about it "publicly" is a bit awkward...and when I'm with friends I'm either crass or ridiculously casual!!! Kinda like when I go to my lady parts doc and I wanna say "My puss has been feelin' this." Or "My twat has been doing that." but DUDE, I can't say "PUSS" or "TWAT" to my DOCTOR!!!! SO then I feel obliged to say vagina, which I NEVER use in my regular life, and it's all just so awkward.)
Anyway... It got my thinking about hormones and the role they play in so many people's lives. I love to say that hormones make most of the decisions, and hormones always win.
This is true. Hormones are often why we can't resist sugar/fat/salt. Crazy but true. Stress and junk food both send our hormones on their own little rollercoaster and both end up with cravings that we literally can't resist. That's why willpower has nothing to do with weight loss. Which is why you should take my quiz and find out who is actual culprit!
I am SO grateful I got some amazing help from a naturopath and an herbal remedy that has basically resolved my hormone issues! Yes, sweet sweet sleep is my friend again (for the most part... I still get interrupted more than I like and have hard time going back to sleep after my child asks me to hold his tissue while he blows his nose at 2am... but at least I don't wane up randomly anymore).
But I know that for many women I meet and clients I work with, hormones play a role... and more often than not it is stress hormones. Which is why I'm super excited about my new quiz to help you figure out which of the most common culprits are causing all of YOUR problems! Find out who YOU get to blame!
And then, of course, let me know!!!!!
I read a book years ago, You Can't Buy My Love, that explains how advertising actually creates addiction to seeking love from external sources - the ads we are exposed to over and over every day are carefully designed to make us think products or things will give us love and satisfaction, but instead leave us hungry for more of said objects.
The deeper I go with my coaching clients and my work helping women from emotional eating I can't help but think about the book again... My clients are strong, smart, funny, ambitious, and basically AMAZING women - but these lines of self sabotage still exist despite how incredibly AWESOME these woman are!!! I can relate, because we've ALL been there... every single woman, and maybe every single person... It takes work to let go of the grip, but it can be done, and it is so freeing!
I'm really excited about the quiz I announced last month - don't worry it's fun and even funny, but it does help identify when media/society has inundated our thoughts about ourselves and our lives...
AND my goal is to of course help you say, "Fuck you, ads!" at the same time you say, "Fuck you, cookies!" ;)
I'm talking about Chakras.
The body wisdom I'm talking about is super simple techniques to get in touch with your own body and its wisdom. It's not yoga, even though I went ahead and mentioned chakras finally. There is some overlap in that yoga is definitely based on body wisdom as well. But what I'm showing you here and in my other Body Wisdom videos is much simpler than that. It's just ways ways to feel better and know yourself better, which helps with SO MANY things in life.
I realize chakras have a lot to tell us, but that's not what this particular post is about ;) Chakras capture huge ideas and potential - about abundance, pleasure, and more. But at a minimum, they also just refer to a basic area of the body. So even if the idea of chakras weird you out, just go with it. I'm introducing a way to relax and improve the health of your entire lower abdomen / lower back area...summed up as the sacral chakra :)
Oh yeah, the all important self care. The thing we all sacrifice to take care of other people, to work a little harder on our job, to get ahead a bit faster, or sometimes just to get by. But it really is essential to take care of ourselves. That's what this body wisdom can teach us - simple ways to get in touch and give a bit of care.
Take Me To Bed
Okay, not really, but take this idea to bed. I literally had NO self care and had only excuses when my physical therapist would ask why I didn't do my neck exercises, or whey I stayed up too late working, or why I felt like shit all the time. And then I realized I could do all these amazing self care routines IN BED!!!!! It changed my life.
I stretch laying down; I meditate laying down; I journal laying down... I basically do all my self care laying down!! It's amazing.
And of course... let me know what YOU feel when you give this a try!!!!
Take me to bed with you... for real!!!
And do this simple secret before you go to sleep.
Just kidding. Actually, it's so simple you can watch it and then go to bed after, because the blue light from your screen is bad for your sleep (and likely adds anxiety).
We Are All Stressed
This simple secret is a fantastic antidote for 21st century stress - the stress you feel, your friends feel, your husband/wife/partner feels, your colleagues feel... and sadly almost all of us feel.
While it manifests in different ways - anxiety, depression, general stress, even anger - the chronic demands society puts on us, and our inability to create the community we need to counteract those demands, adds up!
Hold Your Heart
In this simple technique (technique is too complicated(, you literally hold your heart. We all need a bit more nurturing in our lives, and this is a way to give it to yourself.
Add a Twist
You can really amp up the relaxation by adding a simple twist. Turn your knees to the right and hold your heart; turn your knees to the left and hold your fake heart (right side).
Take Me to Bed
This is why I tell people to take these videos to bed!!! They are soooooo simple and relaxing and really help you detach from some of the day before you head off to sleep.
I totally sucked at self care until I started doing my self care in bed!!! All the things I love to do that make me feel great: journaling, reading, stretching, body wisdom, meditation (I do it laying down), self massage, and other things all happen in bed. And frankly, I really never could get them into my life until I figured this secret out!
So while you may not want to actually take your screen to bed (like I said, the light it emits is bad for your sleep), you should take these ideas to bed and give them a try!!!
And of course, let me know when you do!!!
Have a friend who feels anxiety? Be sure to share this video!!!
I help busy, ambitious women connect their food to their desires & overcome emotional eating in a non-judgmental, supportive environment.