A Decor Story (Or the Magic of a Deadline)

I love my "new" bathroom

I love my “new” bathroom

Have you ever planned something, invested in it, thought about it, wanted it – and then just never took the time to do it? Because, well, there were other things to do – ones that were more vital (to other people), ones that were easier (reading that book), ones that you “should” do first. I’m here to tell you this can go on for a long time, in this decor story…about 5 years.

But I’m not going to beat myself up, much. I just try to allow myself to be aware of the choices I make and why. I find it ironic that suddenly, in one weekend, I got a project done (with my sweetie’s help, of course) that I put off for years. It’s hilarious really! But that is the magic of a deadline. I just came up with reasons to put off the joy of redecorating a room and enjoying the outcome until I needed to do it for someone else. (Hey, it’s super helpful to know what motivates you, yes?) I’m moving soon and selling my house so my upgrade now is in the hope of pleasing a buyer.

But, what if I considered allowing myself to be more motivated by my own desires and enjoyment. What if I scheduled the work, and planned it, and then actually did it? What if I put my desire for a beautiful home first (and didn’t live with an ugly, outdated bathroom for 5 years…)? Sounds decadent – right?

I think this is a lesson many of us could learn – despite all of the beautiful homes on Pinterest, in design magazines, and on cable shows – do you have the home of your dreams? And just so you understand – I think the home you’re in now can be the home of your dreams – it doesn’t have to be a mansion or a villa in Italy (though, go for it, if that’s what you truly desire!). I think you can have a version of what you want now – regardless. The main thing is that it feels like you, feels like home, feels the way you want it to feel, and supports the life you want to live.

My bath redecoration took two of us most of one day and part of another – a totally worth it expenditure of time. It was also inexpensive financially. I painted, bought a new cabinet, 2 towel racks, and a light fixture. The rest of what I used were things I already had around the house. That small investment yielded a room I enjoy so much more! It also gave me incentive to get rid of toiletries and things I never really use to streamline my bathroom storage. And I really hope the new owners of this house enjoy the pretty, updated space as much as I do!

I’m definitely keeping this lesson in mind as I move into my new home. In fact, I’m visiting there today to line up some help and take measurements so I can plan, and invest, and give myself a deadline to make this the space I want to live in, and love my life in, for the next phase of my journey.

Do you have a space you’ve put off making yours, making lovely, making useful? How can you remedy that and create a dream come true? I hope you’re inspired to do something important, create a deadline –  just for you!

Love, Cheryl

Here are before and after pictures:

Before-ish, at the beginning of the process

Before-ish, at the beginning of the process

 

A very messy work in progress

A very messy work in progress

 

I removed the old cabinet over the toilet and added a picture from another room instead. Pretty and much less clutter!

I removed the old cabinet over the toilet and added a picture from another room instead. Pretty and much less clutter!

The sink area with a new light and medicine cabinet/mirror unit.

The sink area with a new light and medicine cabinet/mirror unit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aphrodite: Goddess of the Month

Aphrodite {Goddess of Love, Beauty, and Self-Worth}

Image by Morgan Sessions

This is my first Goddess of the Month post and it came about by accident – as some of the most delicious things do. I’ve been used to receiving a Goddess Reading from the amazing and wise Amy Palko (and I highly recommend them! You can sign up here). This month it didn’t come and I found I really missed my monthly guide. The readings are insightful; and they give me an idea of areas in my life, or in myself, to look for more inspiration or learning that is really relevant to my life right now. So, I decided to choose a goddess (all by myself) and access my own intuition to see what she has to tell me. I used my trusty Goddess Oracle cards (by Amy Sophia Marashinsky), drew a goddess card and wrote about what Aphrodite meant to me, and what I felt she wanted me to know more about this month.

Below is the result. I decided to share it here – in case you’re looking for some goddess guidance, or a new (fun!) practice for accessing your deeper self. Or you just might want to answer the questions at the end – they’re important ones to visit now and again to help you sustain love for your life and remember to take joy in it!

Aphrodite (or Venus) was born of the sky and the sea. Her beauty and allure are undeniable. She is a goddess of Love and Beauty, she rules Compassion and Passion. She is one of the top players in Greek mythology. Originally a Mediterranean Mother Goddess, she was later was added to the Greek pantheon. The Greeks “demoted” her and married her to Hephaestus, arguably the least favored, loved, or respected god of all. Love married to craft, to engineering, to the God of the Forge; Beauty united with the Beast. It tells you a bit about how the Greeks perceived Aphrodite’s kind of Love, the dark and the light of it. Unsatisfied with her husband, she was constantly having trysts with other gods – most notably with Ares/Mars the God of War. Love and War, they don’t play well together, but they have a passionate relationship according to the ancient Greek mind.

I also looked at the way astrology sees Venus (the Roman version of Aphrodite). Along with beauty and love she rules self-value, the money you make for yourself, life balance, art, relationships, your connection to your inherent gifts, the social graces, and romance. This is no silly, jealous woman. She brings energy to the parts of life that must be attended to so you can enjoy it and connect meaningfully with others.

She can seem a bit capricious, but she’s having fun and wants you to as well. Love is serious, but it is also playful; it is necessary, but also desired; it is delicious, but may seem to open you to pain. It’s about that opening though, the allowing of love (even if it may be painful), that brings joy, and zest, and value to life.  It’s about seeing the value in yourself, loving yourself. It’s about sex, and flirting, and pleasure. It’s about creativity and making a beautiful life. It’s about supporting yourself well, in many ways, including financially.

What is love? And beauty? What does balance look like to you? What makes a good relationship? A perfect home? Can you see Beauty and the Beast in yourself? How do they play out in your life? Do you have compassion for both?  How do you express your creativity? When do you play? Do you flirt (with others, with life, with love)? How do you feel about your finances? Do you support yourself in ways that make life feel delightful?

These are questions Aphrodite asks. Answer them for yourself. These questions have the ability to open our eyes to the most amazing life we desire to live, and offer ways to make adjustments (slight, huge…) so we can make it happen now.

Sending Love!

Cheryl

Seasonal Shifts (or Love the One You’re With)

garden shop amanas

A sign in my favorite garden shop in Amana, Iowa

I’m still swooning to the smell of newly mown grass.

Still enjoying my summer “uniform” of black tank and wedge sandals with shorts or a skirt.

Still loving Harley rides for ice cream treats.

Still wanting to lounge on my porch of a morning sipping iced tea and communing with my garden and its many visitors (squirrels, rabbits, birds, etc.). Delightful!

But…

The cicadas are singing – loudly.

The corn is turning golden brown, and goldenrod blooms on roadsides.

Days are shorter.

School has begun.

The garden markets are bursting with mums.

These are certain signs that a change of season is coming soon. Delicious Autumn! I love it! But the change of season from Summer to Autumn is always a little bittersweet. “Summer is ending and Winter is coming!” yells the Lacky Lucy in my brain. And, truly, I love Winter too – brilliant, crisp, blue and white days! It’s just that around here it tends to overstay its welcome by about 2 months.

What is a goddess to do? Well, I plan to revel in the late summer joys! A time of year that is a melting pot of two lovely seasons – it can only be good. I’ll take each lovely day as it comes and enjoy the gifts of each one. I’ve actually written that down on a piece of paper and posted it where I can see it – because, you know, I tend to forget. I’ll make sure to spend time in my garden, take walks, pick flowers, have a BBQ party, wear my sandals as long as possible, and spend time on my porch.

And regardless of the day or season I’m going to remember to love the one I’m with!

Wishing you a delightful seasonal transformation!

With Love,

Cheryl

 

A Song in My Head

Image by Clem Onojeghuo

I’ve always had songs in my head – you know those songs that get stuck, for whatever reason, and can drive you almost mad? Yeah, you too? Well, I used to think they were just an annoyance, and then as I learned more about how my subconscious (sub in here higher self, inner guide, God, etc.) communicated with me I began to think there might be information there for me. The question many times though was: “What information?” Because sometimes these songs aren’t obviously of help. Two days ago the song in my head was “Everyone Else is an Asshole” by Reel Big Fish, it took a bit of discovery to figure that message out I can tell you! The thing is I’ve had some really rich discoveries by following the thread begun by the music in my head, it’s been such a help – and lots of fun.

The aforementioned song was pretty useful really. I’ve always enjoyed its funny, tongue-in-cheek approach to suggesting that if you think everyone around you is an asshole perhaps you should look at yourself first. So, of course, I looked at that. For the most part I don’t think people are assholes, I usually like them and try not to judge, but the truth is I can definitely still use more work on this. And sometimes I can be an asshole myself. It helps me to be aware of that. But the larger message seemed to me to be twofold: First, humor is a fabulous way to get out of that grumpy, judgmental place – if you can see the humor in a situation you’ve stepped outside and have a bigger, clearer view. And it’s fun! The second message is that what you see outside is also what’s inside – and that refers not only to people who appear to be assholes but those who are beautiful, who are successful, kind, rich, etc. What you’re seeing outside is what is inside you too. And you can be sure there are people who are seeing their beauty, their kindness, and even, perhaps, their own assholiness reflected in you. It’s a great lesson to remember because it helps you find the truth of a situation.

“As above, so below, as within, so without, as the universe, so the soul…”  Hermes Trismegistus

If you’re interested in getting more from that annoying song in your head here are a few ways I use to tease out the meaning. See how they work for you. (And if you are feeling brave the “song” is below. Note, there is profanity – obviously, so please don’t listen if you’ll be offended):

  • First I focus on the specific lyrics and tune that repeat in my head to see if there is an obvious message for me there. Consider how you feel when you hear it. Does it bring back a memory? Does it make you want to move your body? Is the tempo slow, zippy, danceable? What energy does it have? Does it remind you of something or someone? If so, how? I usually write in my journal about this – partly because I can access my intuition easier that way and partly because then I can remember it an hour later – (really, steel trap!) This may be all you do and it’s very helpful on its own.
  • Next, if I’m still not sure, or want to know more, I like to look up the lyrics. This can be tricky if you can’t recall enough to find the song and songwriter/performer, but there are such amazing search engines for this now. Google it and you’ll probably be lucky. Reading the lyrics can often help you figure out more about the meaning for you. Today the song in my head was “We Built This City” by Starship and the meaning wasn’t completely clear for me until I read the full lyrics and got a better sense of the message of the song. Then I considered how that related to me and my life and there it was – some great information for me! I realized I can benefit from remembering what I build my own “city” on (what my foundation is). It’s really key for me to be true to that right now.
  • Next, I might look for the video – this is one of my favorite parts, especially if there’s a good video of the song – my faves are old MTV videos and live performances. You really experience the energy of the song from the performance of it and that can be an eye-opener. Sometimes I think my subconscious just wants me to lighten up and sends me a song with a great, funny, or nostalgic video to help me gain perspective on life.
  • With each type of exploration take a moment to check-in to how you feel, what the message might be – it can be very simple. I’ve had messages to slow down, to laugh, to pay attention to my money, etc. The message will be helpful and kind – even when suggesting that you just may need to look at how you judge other people.
  • If you want to carry this further you can write the message down where you can see it, memorize it, say it out loud to yourself, or just listen to the song a few times today. Allow it to inform you as the day goes on.

In my monthly newsletters I share a song that has been in my head lately, and news and tips for a life of delight. If you aren’t on my email list you can sign up here.

Lots of Love, and Happy August!!

Cheryl

Everyone Else is an Asshole

Road Trip to a Farm {and Why I Love Airbnb}

The happy pigs in the woods who ran to visit us each time we left the cottage.

The happy pigs in the woods who ran to visit us each time we left the cottage.

This week my sweetheart and I took a little trip. It was absolutely required because we were both a bit…frazzled, grumpy, sleepy, and in need of a new scene. If you’ve read any of my road trip posts you’ll know I believe road trips are essential to good soul health. Plus they’re fun and illuminating. I generally learn something good – even if it’s only the best place to get barbecued ribs.

This trip was our fourth Airbnb destination. Have you used Airbnb? It’s fabulous! When I realized we were going to become very miserable and virtually ineffective if we didn’t have a break (and soon) we made a list of our needs. It’s always good to have at least a basic idea of what you need/want from a road trip – makes it easier to get it! We wanted something quiet, private, near a wood, and not too far away. I began looking at the usual places I think of for wooded, private stays – state parks. There are beautiful parks in Iowa and some have charming cabins, but they wanted at least a 7 day stay and that wasn’t possible just now. Then I remembered Airbnb and almost immediately found a sweet little cottage on a hobby farm near miles of groomed trails. It was also near a few towns I’d missed checking out in my many Iowa road trips, just in case I wanted someone to cook for me! And perhaps a bit of browsing therapy.

One of the best things about using Airbnb is the people you get to connect with. Right after booking online I got a message from Penny that we were welcome at Honeybee Cottage at Star’s Hollow…delicious, yes? We arrived a bit, um, well I was a bit lit, because we had stopped in Waverly, IA at The Fainting Goat for an amazing craft beer (Dragons’ Milk – amazing and lethal!) and their delicious chorizo-laden queso fundido dip with naan bread. Penny and her family met us upon arrival and then she took us for a golf cart tour of her beautiful little farm.

Our cottage was very sweet and perfect for lounging and napping – which was just what I wanted to do! It was also a great place to unplug because there was absolutely no internet connection (no, not even 1X on my phone). It was lovely not checking the weather or looking up the myriad things you think you need to look up, but really, you don’t. My sweetheart, Rich, hiked and came back with a small souvenir of poison ivy. I napped, and read, and drew, and lazed about in a completely fabulous way.

We did go to Cedar Falls one day for an early lunch and there Rich discovered some of the best ribs he’s ever had at The Noble Oak. Naturally, I found a couple of vintage shops to peruse. At the delightfully (and so aptly) named Little Prairie Girl I found a fantastic 1940’s Dorothy Morgan tablecloth to add to my collection. I’ve been collecting vintage table cloths and aprons since the 80’s, before anyone cared about “vintage” much. I have old suitcases filled with them and I use them every day – so much fun!

Every road trip I take brings some insight about life, or work. This one was full of learning (again) that surrender is a truly blissful state. The weather stinks? Oh well, I can enjoy my mini vacation regardless. No phone signal? Well, yay!! Simple food is the best – no need to cook at all. I don’t need to “accomplish” anything, I can just be lazy. (Don’t tell me you don’t go on vacation thinking you’ll finally learn how to use all of the features on your camera, or read that book about how to earn money on eBay. OK it could just be me…) I really relaxed, and now I’m on fire, back in my little office and doing what I love with verve and delight. That is what road trips are for…refreshment.

And so I wish for you a delightful trip out of the everyday – even if it’s just to a new place around the corner, a favorite park, or the nearest country road. Get out and love life!

Enjoy! Cheryl

PS I can highly recommend any place I’ve mentioned here, and if you visit Penny be sure to tell her Cheryl says “HI!”

 

Road trip to Star's Hollow

Road trip to Star’s Hollow

25 Fun Summertime Things To Do

Road trip!

Road trip!

Here are 25 ways to enjoy the season and make the most of it while it’s still here!

  • Take a road trip – what have you been wanting to see? Go see it! Or just take a drive on a beautiful country road – no hurry, no worries.
  • Treat yourself to a big, beautiful, fragrant flower bouquet from a local farmer.
  • Pick flowers from your garden to display in your home or at your desk.
  • Go hiking in the forest or by a lake, enjoy the fresh air and being in nature.
  • Take a leisurely walk in your neighborhood or a favorite part of town. Stroll. Loiter.
  • Discover a new coffee shop and linger.
  • Try a new ice-cream flavor, compare ice cream shops and choose a favorite, or learn to make ice cream at home.
  • Visit a farmers market, buy fresh local produce and amazing art, talk to the vendors about their products/passion.
  • Relax on the porch: snooze, read, sip iced tea, write, chat with a friend, enjoy the world of your yard/neighborhood…or do nothing at all.
  • Watch the sun set.
  • Watch fireflies light up the night.
  • Play badminton or croquet, start a basketball game, play kick the can. (Does anyone remember how to play kick the can? Here’s a link with the “rules” and other fun games too.)
  • Go swimming at a local beach or pool.
  • Look up bike trails and take a ride in a new-to-you area of your town or county.
  • Dine alfresco (on your porch – put up string lights, set up a speaker, use candles & flowers to decorate the table – or go to a local restaurant with a great outdoor patio, ahhh, romance!).
  • Take a photography walk and snap some pictures to recall summertime all year round.
  • Look at the stars, learn the constellations if you don’t know them; if you, do teach someone else.
  • Look for fun local events you want to attend (baseball game, outdoor concert, nature walk, lecture on the stars, etc.) – schedule at least one per month and enjoy!
  • Visit a public garden or butterfly habitat.
  • Dance in the moonlight.
  • Tie dye shirts in bright colors with the kids (outside is a great place to do this!) and wear them when you visit the zoo or the amusement park – the better to find each other.
  • Paint outside: or color, draw, play with clay – make a mess!
  • Drive with the windows open, belting out songs from your past (or that “classic rock” station you love). Add friends and this is like being 16 again.
  • Act like you’re on vacation. Or take a vacation at home, whether it’s a weekend or a full week: shift your schedule like you would for a vacation (sleep in, stay up later), pursue vacation type activities (like reading in a deck chair, doing a jigsaw puzzle, taking naps, checking out the local sites, golfing, etc.) eat vacation type foods, relax, hire someone to come clean the house (before and after your home vacation, or in the middle), unplug, let yourself be out of your regular routine and regular activities, don’t do house projects now (you can always plan another long weekend or week to do that) – it’s time to relax and enjoy the season!
  • Make a list of what you love about summer and then be sure to take time to enjoy those things, those feelings, while the glorious summertime is here!

Go forth and love the season you’re in! I hope it’s beautiful. I’d love to hear about your favorite summertime pursuits. Write a comment or drop me a line.

Hugs,

Cheryl

More Word Play for Q3

My Blooming Trumpet Vine

My Blooming Trumpet Vine

I’ve been enjoying my Word this year more than ever before! I’ve been much more connected, and interestingly for the first time I’ve seen my Word in a more complete way – one that tests my ideas about what’s “good” and what’s “too much”.

My Word is “Flourishing”, and it’s a bigger and stronger word than I ever expected. This isn’t a word that plays small! But as I observe how the word is playing out in my life I can certainly see that I’ve played small, and also what my feelings are about too much. It has been pretty fascinating and so eye-opening. I say I want plenty, a lot, abundance! But then I get uncomfortable with “too much”, and that’s a vibe I don’t want to continue! So, I’ve been learning to welcome too much and to “prune” it when I need to, with the understanding that will bring me even more of what I need, but with some life enhancing boundaries included.

Some very real evidence of this is my trumpet vine which basically took over my entire front porch and made the front door practically unusable – that plant is flourishing, let me tell you! So, I applied some judicious pruning (boundaries) – it’s still abundant, burgeoning, and growing like mad – but now it’s also flowering for the first time since I planted it 3 years ago. More flourishing in a delightful way.

So, one idea for getting in touch with your Word this quarter is to see how it’s showing up in your world in signs and symbols. I saw that trumpet vine as a sign of flourishing and learning to accept BIG growth, but also to know how to set some boundaries so that I can still move freely. You can take pictures of the signs and symbols you find and/or write about them. I’ll be doing both for July in my Year Book.

Here are more ideas for playing with your Word:

  • Mid-year is a great time to assess what you’ve done over the past 6 months and celebrate it all! Look at your accomplishments, do they reflect the influence of the Word you chose for the year? Are there any lessons here for you? How does it feel to be living your Word this way? Write about this and keep it with the rest of your Word practices for the year. It’s also a great time to look over the practices you’ve done with your Word so far this year and reflect on what you’ve discovered.
  • I suggested a vision board and vision cards in the previous Word of the Year posts, but this takes that a step further. I created a vision board for June using the phrase “My greatest desires and joys help me to Flourish, these are….” And then I used my intuition to pull images and words and create a vision board. I used what I learned from that to make small cards to tell what flourishing is like for me each day (see image below), then I placed them in my Year Book where I can access that wisdom easily. This has been amazingly delicious and helps me to remember what a flourishing life is all about! I tend to get locked in on something and just push through in misery when that is absolutely not necessary. How about you? Do you forget the things that make life grand in the rush of daily life? This is a great time to reinvigorate daily fun and joy!
My Year Book page: My Greatest Desires and Joys Help me to Flourish!

My Year Book page: My Greatest Desires and Joys Help me to Flourish!

  • I’m going to create “oracle” cards for Flourishing. I’ll used all I’ve learned about it as I’ve played with my Word this year then paint, draw, collage, photograph etc. images to make cards that express these lessons and ideas. I’ll write a paragraph on the back about what it means to draw this card in response to a question. I’ve never done anything remotely like this and it may turn out just horrible, but I’m so excited to try! I’ll share mine, and if you do this please share yours too.

Living with one chosen word for a year is a profound way to grow, learn, and have fun with a focus that takes you in a direction you really want to go. May these ideas for getting to know your Word better be of help. Happy Mid-year! And I hope you’re having fun with your Word, and in your delightful life.

Love, Cheryl

PS: Here are the other Word of the Year posts – Quarter 1, 2016 and Quarter 2, 2016

Amazing Women and the Work They Do

Image by Tegan Mierle

When I began training as a life coach I entered an alternate universe – one I had been hoping and dreaming of for a long time. It was a land of honesty, grace, love, and a desire to be of help to the world.It included amazing people (mostly women) who had not let the drama, misery, pain or mistakes in their lives to deflate them, but allowed these experiences to hone them, teach them, and give them something to share to help others. These women are brave, kind, highly ethical, openly spiritual, and delightfully fun! I have been graced with their beautiful offerings, and observed how they practice the art of business in a new way that gives me hope for all of us, and our future. I’m sharing with you here some of these women and their work in the world. Perhaps you’ll find a perfect fit for what you need right now to empower your flourishing life!

Amy Palko is a gorgeous Scotswoman who knows her goddesses and is a true heart-centered business owner. She’s an artist, poet, and teacher, and so much more. Find her here:http://www.amypalko.com/  She is doing her Summer Solstice Selkie Petition – a beautiful and truly unique offering – very soon. Sign up here;  http://www.amypalko.com/2016-summer-solstice-selkie-petition/

Lauren Miranda Gilbert is a truly intuitive, witty, and practical astrologer and life coach. She combines tarot, astrology, and coaching to help clients access the deep knowing that heals. Her website is available here: http://www.laurenmiranda.com/

Jamie Ridler is just delightful! She has videos from her studio at YouTube, lots of delicious classes and offerings at her site, and a newsletter I appreciate each week. I have no idea how she does all she does but she’s always smiling! I love her Full Moon Dreamboard workshops.

Cathy O’Brien is a beautiful person with a beautiful mission. She offers Reiki for animals and their people for healing, peace, and wellness. She also leads amazing Healing Circles in the SF Bay area for endangered animals and the planet. Her website is here: http://www.heartsandpawsanimalhealing.com/

Mary Lunnen is a gentle soul and a pleasure to know. She offers Rediscovery Coaching and Rediscovery Cards to help you with life’s struggles. She also holds Dare to Blossom workshops Cornwall. You can access a free session with her here: http://www.daretoblossom.co.uk/rediscovery/rediscovery-coaching

Emily Kristofferson is an amazing business coach! She has a lovely approach, and so many tools and ideas to help you with your business. Connect with her here: http://emilykristofferson.com/

Jeanette Maw is a the LOA coach in my world. I love her wisdom, verve, and willingness to put it out there! You can work with her at her website , from there you can access her blog, Good Vibes University and more! There is just so much here to read and ways to connect with others interested in LOA – it’s an amazing resource.

I was just recently introduced to Randi Buckley, but anyone who has a Viking Woman workshop is in my tribe! She’s known for her fabulous work in creating Healthy Boundaries for Kind People. Access her website here: http://www.randibuckley.com/

I hope you enjoy learning more about these amazing women and are inspired by them, as I am. It’s a gorgeous world that includes people and offerings like these!

Blessings and Love,

Cheryl (PS, I’ll be on vacation until June 20th, but I’ll return with the Solstice!)

Feel Peaceful Now

Image by Cheryl Haezebroeck at theintrepidgoddess,com

This is a quick practice to maintain peace, or to introduce it into a trying day. It’s simple, only requires a bit of attention, and you can do it over and over (in fact, I recommend using it as needed). Here we go…It’s so simple I feel a bit silly sharing it! But it does work, and the more you do it the more you realize you can have an effect on how you feel and how you take the things that come up in life.

Peace in All Things Practice:

  • Breathe in slowly and completely, exhale the same way. Allow yourself to stop and look inward, at yourself.
  • Drop your shoulders (I know they’re up around your ears  – mine too!).
  • Smile, or grin. Feel the lovely energy this washes through your body and mind. Ahhhh!
  • Love where you are right now. In this very moment let yourself appreciate yourself, what’s happening, what you have, who you are with, etc. Let it all be OK, and more than OK, for this moment
  • Rinse & Repeat as needed.

It can seem hard sometimes to do this in the swirl and pulse of the day, but practice makes it easier and more effective. Introducing this still time into your life has all sorts of benefits from greater mental clarity and focus to more calm and happy vibes. I especially use it when I know it’ll be a hectic day, and I know it will go much better if I take the time to check in with myself and allow love and appreciation to bubble up. You may already have a practice like this that you use – if so, just think of this as a gentle reminder to use it and care for yourself in the thick of things.

Wishing you a glorious and peaceful day! I’d love hearing your experience, and if this works for you or if you have another practice that you use to access peace.

Love, Cheryl

Exercise, Weight Loss & Growth

Sassy, right-sized me

I went to a retail palace this weekend and found myself stunned! I was trying on a new color of my favorite jeans, in the same comfortable size I have in my closet right now, but these were, well, unpleasantly tight. Like miserably tight. So, thinking it was just that style, I tried on shorts in that size (my size!!) from the same brand. Um, also tight. Because I’ve decided to never again purchase tight clothing because I’m planning to lose weight “someday”, I tried on the next size larger. And they were perfect. Here’s a reasonable facsimile of my mental Mongol Horde’s response (see this post about the Horde): “Ack!! You went UP a size!! All the exercising we’ve been doing, the eating well…What the heck! What have we been denying ourselves sugar for? You’re so fat!”

I had a chance in that dressing room, in that moment, to choose fear or love, panic or peace. I’m pretty proud of myself, because I chose peace. I chose to love myself regardless of my jean size and unplanned growth. And yet, in truth, it still hurt a bit. If I got bigger when I was trying to get smaller…WHY was I NOT eating PIE?

The next morning I got up and exercised anyway, dong a routine I hadn’t for a while, and noticed it was a lot easier now. Then I weighed myself and I’d lost a few pounds. My blood pressure was excellent. If being in better shape, healthier, and losing a few pounds is how I GROW up a size – then I’ll be at peace with that. And now and then I’ll probably have pie too!

We’re all works in progress. I’m always growing and expanding in a variety of ways. Sometimes I’m shrinking, or releasing, or retreating instead. It’s all good! As I learned from the incredible Martha Beck, adding “and that’s OK” to the end of a sentence can be the difference between peace and agony.

So….I’m growing and changing, and that is absolutely OK. I can love that.

Love,

Cheryl