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Have I mentioned how freaking happy I’ve been lately? If you follow me on Instagram, this may already have been apparent to you. I am a smile-ear-to-ear grateful for everything these days person. I wish I could put this into a how-to manual for the negative-energy-sucking-non-aware people.

Does anyone know my story?
Does anyone know what I’m about to go through?
Probably not.

I have 3 DUI’s…..I am 9 months sober today and grateful for my life. I have trial in a week and a half and am looking at about 4 months in jail minimum…..with a miracle, it could be less but that is what I am looking at. I figured you all should know in case I drop off the face of the internet for a bit hehe. I could cry about my future and play the victim card a while longer but what the hell would that do for me?

In my entire unhealthy drinking/living career, I am grateful that I managed to get out from all of this without hurting myself or another. Today I get to be alive. People ask why I run so much, why I’m always in the mountains, why I do so much yoga and why am I never able to relax?
Well now you know…what’s the point of living if you can’t enjoy it? Imagine you’re going to jail in a few weeks…what would you do today?
What would you do tomorrow?

Imagine if you looked into your future and didn’t see the freedom that you have today…
WHAT WOULD YOU DO DIFFERENTLY?

Now imagine you’re not like me and don’t have to go to jail.
Look at how you live your life and think to yourself…why am I not living a more free, fulfilling life?
Why am I living in this small boring box, going to work feeling shitty about how much I hate my job, how much this hangover hurts, why do I stay with a lover who doesn’t connect with me?

Why do I allow myself to play small?
Why don’t I truly embrace my life?

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I’m reading this amazing book by Danielle LaPorte called The Desire Map. It talks about rather than create a goal list, a bucket list, a 1, 5 and 10 year plan, why not create a Desire List?
Sometimes we make lofty goals and sometimes life happens and changes us from ever getting to some of those goals….we feel sorry for ourselves and we sometimes forget our lists all together. She comes at goal setting from a whole different angle in which she says create a desire list.
HOW DO YOU WANT TO FEEL?…..in your ideal life I’m asking you this now…how do you want to FEEL?

Here is my list for the current time:

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Now she says stick that somewhere and look at it everyday, add to it, start over, get creative with it. Now look at that list, and really dissect the list…think of things that make you feel those feelings….

Now do something everyday that makes you feel some of those feelings…now do them every day. Soon enough the things you do everyday that make you feel those ideal feelings end up shaping the path to your ideal life.

On an end note, nothing makes me happier than doing the best I can with what I have. Enjoying the people I have in my life. Enjoying the freedom I have today, and when I face my hardest times, I will treat is as a meditation, a life lesson, to help others see the greatness in their life while they can. We think our lives can be so hard sometimes even when nothing really is that hard…..remember that life is about perspective and why waste it by looking at the negative side of everything.

1377388_376622242440463_262925_nCreate SPACE by letting go.

Something I’ve never really been good about is showing weakness. My perfectionistic obsessiveness always brought me to a place of pushing to be perfect when I really just needed to relax…

 

Sometimes in life we need to take it easy. Anything we push in life surely will go away in one way or another. In my case, its battling this tendonitis. It started a year ago in my left wrist. I was jumping into handstands, crow, anything upside down. I still do these things but at that point in my life I was aggressively pushing the pain out of my mind and thinking it would go away in time. I am 27 years old and to this day (knock on wood) I’ve never broken a bone, I’ve never sprained anything and really never been hurt. Anything I have ever done has served me well and anything that hurts always went away. Time sure has changed, because I’m starting to really feel pain if I work too hard in one form of exercise…I wake up in back/shoulder pain once and awhile and realize I am no longer invincible like my ego thought I was.

 

My tendonitis got worse….I went to teacher training and spent the whole training working against myself with this wrist problem. When I got home from training, it got so bad that I finally went to a hand therapist. I didn’t feel things were really helping since It was just in a brace for months so I took up acupuncture. I also felt that that only helped lesson the pain for a short while. Keep in mind through all this I was still getting upside down on my mat and not modifying for shit.

 

Finally we tried natural injections and within a month, everything was gone. Woohooooo. It’s been about 4 or 5 months now with a good wrist.

 

Now my tendonitis is back and it’s in my shoulder, around my rotator cuff and down my upper arm. I couldn’t sleep for days and it felt like constant aching. I went to my chiropractor and acupuncture doc again and we are working through this.

 

I am also doing a 30 day yoga challenge this month.

ohhhhh the power of an addictive crazy person. Things are different now though…I have been to 6 classes in the last 5 days and have mixed in Bikram, Yin and in my normal power classes, I’m dropping my knees in chatarunga and not getting upside down. As much as I have mini panic attacks when I’m holding a chair pose prayer twist and the teacher says we can jump into side-crow if that’s in our practice, I stay still…I know now that my ego has brought me injury, and my ego will continue to try to give me injury but only if i let it.

So I learn to let go…

Quiet the ego down that tells me I will not be a good teacher if I cant do EVERYTHING.

It’s so important to be aware of how we treat our bodies and we have to mentally check in with our intentions. In my case, I had the intention of looking good. I came to my mat to prove to everyone in the room that I could follow all the teachers orders in grace. But that’s pure bullshit now isn’t it? No one gives a flying care what you do on your mat. They also don’t care what you do in your life. Everything is all up in our heads to try and wear this special mask when we are all not that special.

When we injure ourselves and continue to ignore what our bodies are trying to tell us, which is to relax and lay off a little, we cause further pain.

 

We need to use yoga to free our ego. Become whole. Become quiet. We come together to share the energy of breathing and moving and living…but coming to yoga to show off your damn gymnastics skills, especially on injury will only burn you out. This month I’m learning to be gentle with my body and mind….because I want this mind and body to last longer than my shitty ego sometimes:)

 

So create space. let it go….let go the need to be so much more than you are. be happy with yourself because you are already perfect.

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This week has been a relaxing one so far. I had the chance to see Bryan Kest for my second time and take his master class. As usual, it was amazing. His outlook on life is inspiring and just having the chance to listen to him speak about life and speak about yoga is something that would benefit everyone in order to live a better, more authentic life.

 

I wish I could have recorded his entire talking portion of the class because everything was noteworthy. He talked about how we make yoga SHIT. We bring our shit into yoga and we make it into shit. We bring in our insecurities with our bodies, we bring in our competitive nature and perfectionism issues. We make it shit. We come into yoga wanting to lose a certain amount of weight or get a yoga body because we are unhappy with the way we are. He said YOGA thinks you’re perfect and beautiful just as you are…

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He talked about how the point of yoga is to gain enlightenment. It’s coming into class and opening our bodies and creating balance. Anything in life that we force, or overwork….wears out the fastest. If we go into class and the teacher says to do something, we don’t have to do it exactly as he/she says, we must listen to our bodies and modify as necessary. Your teacher doesn’t care how fancy you get and handstands won’t promise you a healthy body. The key is balance.

 

He discussed the idea of buying a used car….what kind of car do we want to buy? Even if its an older car, what kind of car do we want?…..We want that gently used car from the old lady in Pasadena. WHY you ask? because that old car in Pasadena is in a location with no humidity and no rust….taken care of by a lady that probably follows the speed limit and takes care of it. The last car we want to buy is one from a taxi driver in New York City. See the difference?

He uses this as an analogy for our bodies. The better we take care of our bodies, without force and with gentle moderation…will last the longest. The body we pound and overuse and not let rest will wear down quickly.

 

He said so many things to write down… so with this blog entry I didn’t exactly care where it went format-wise….it’s more a free-write of what I remember from my experience.

 

Something else that he mentioned was gratitude. We must always be grateful. When we come from a place of always always thinking “I’ll be happy when….” then we’ll never fricken be happy. We will always get something then once we have it we’ll move on to the next thing we think will create happiness for ourselves. We must come from a place of “I am happy. I am grateful for…”

 

One part that i could really relate to was addiction. He discussed the addict who stops the substance he/she is addicted to. There is this space of stress and boredom and a flow of emotions but once we get through that, there is serenity. It’s so very true. To be happy JUST THE WAY THINGS ARE is key. As an addict myself, I have gone through this, and it’s the best thing that has ever happened in my life. I am grateful for simplicity. I am grateful spending time alone with myself without the need to feel incomplete. When we get to this peacefulness….we develop serenity.

 

There was so much more but if you ever get a chance to check him out, you should. After his lecture we had a great practice filled with laughs, F-bombs and smiles. I have been so grateful for my life. I even signed up for Art of Assisting here in April and I can’t wait. This is another teacher training program through Baron Baptiste. I am grateful and excited for my life to unfold.

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I’m back I’m back!!! Feels like it’s been so long! I have had a broken computer forever…I have updated a few times from my cell and iPad but nothing compares to writing on my laptop. Sometimes over the last couple weeks, I would be daydreaming about what I wanted to write about and then when I thought about it more…the thought of doing it all via phone sounded too exhausting…my thoughts move much too fast for my measly phone. Anyway I finally got off my ass and took my Mac to the Apple store and found out it was a lot easier to fix than expected…go figure.

Anyway! A lot has happened since last time I updated!  Last month I had seen Rachel Brathen for the master class and it was amazingggg. Since then I have really worked on my arm balances. I also signed up for Bryan Kest’s master class for the 18th of this month! I can’t wait to see him again, I saw him a year ago and he is fantastic!

 

Things that have happened since:

  • I turned 27!…Holy crap.
  • I turned 6 months sober.
  • I hiked.
  • I yogaaad.
  • I ran.
  • AND OUR SEAHAWKS WON THE SUPERBOWLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!

 

Let’s start with my birthday. I am officially 27…When I was a little girl, I imagined that by the age of twenty-seven, I would be married with a child, living in a house that I owned and working a 9-5 job. My life is quite the opposite and I’m learning to accept it. I officially gave up trying to control everything this year. I can’t control you, I can’t control the future, I can’t control anything other than my actions…I have my side of the street to clean and that is what I’ve committed to this year. A year of bettering one’s self to the point of beaming happiness…a commitment that allows me to be completely present and content with this moment…right here right now. No one else EVER truly cares what you do and where you are in your life. Most people are always so focused on themselves that if we actually spend time trying to be someone or do certain things just to seem impressive, just to seem “normal”….well we are setting ourselves up for failure. I have come a long way since 26 and I wouldn’t change it in any way.

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So what did I do for my birthday? Well I went to a drag show with my best girlfriends of course! Haha I have never seen a drag show and its been on my bucket list! It was heaps of fun and all COMPLETELY SOBER:)

 

 

Thats brings me to my sobriety…woohoo I made it 6 months! It actually went by really fast. It’s amazing how happy I have been since I quit. Well it was really hard at first with the transition and the whole idea of “having to actually feel everything” but once you get past your fears and your ego…there is this space. A space of freedom…and that is where I am right now. I am at a place where I have the ability to be happy in every form because I let go of holding on to the one thing holding me back…and that was my alcohol problem…Anyway it feels great and I feel a lot more healthy!

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Another thing I’ve done since my last post is hike of course…heres a picture of me at Poo Poo Point! I’m coming back here sometime soon to go paragliding! 

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Here are a couple pictures from my yoga lately:

first attempt at headstand with lotus variation

first attempt at headstand with lotus variation

Brian and my first attempt at acro yoga!

Brian and my first attempt at acro yoga!

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day of the superbowl....our hawks killed it!

day of the superbowl….our hawks killed it!

And some excellent shots from my runs:

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7 mile run along the waterfront in Seattle

7 mile run along the waterfront in Seattle

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Yesterday morning I woke up, laced my shoes and got over to Greenlake to do a little run. One lap around feeling that crisp air and then proceeded to a second lap because one just wasn’t enough. I am reading Chi Marathon right now so the entire run I was adjusting my stride, adjusting my shoulders, trying to land light on the balls of my feet,trying to breathe deeply in and out through my nose, and trying to stay present. It’s funny how on that first mile everything in your body speaks to you.

Your ankles ache a little
Your knees are confused why you ran so soon from the last run.
Your fingers start to numb a little wondering why you forgot your gloves, again.
Your shoulders tense up and you have to force relaxation.
You have to breathedeeply to all that pain and remember that half of ll this is exaggerated in your mind.
After that first mile you get to a clearing…your legs no longer hurt and your breathing becomes relaxed. You kind of forget that you are running. You begin to notice the trees, notice the families of ducks that all have a purpose, notice the changing clouds and the changing sun. You notice the runners on their second lap with you, you notice the new runners and realize that we are all here together.
We all have this common love for finding ourselves within our runs.
When I run, I am at peace. I lose all the stress of my life, of my day when I am out there.
I need to work on this in my actual reality. I need to see my life and live it the way I do on a run…with grace and a clear mind without worry of the past or future.
Since the new year has begun, I have fallen into stress eating, low motivation, unwilling to go to yoga daily and just want to lay in bed and read. I think it’s because I feel a tad stuck, I still don’t know my fate for the next few months, all my yoga friends are going to level one training in Utah this April and I desperately want to go, my best friend might be moving to Houston in August and I have crazy abandonment issues rising when everyone around me is moving forward while I am staying in the same place. I know this is just my ego getting the best of me and I must get over it…for now I will just keep running….and hopefully someday I can live my dreams and teach yoga and travel this beautiful earth at the same time.

 

 

 

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I can’t believe January is right around the corner. I am ready to start that fresh page on January 1st to a life transformation.

2013 was great but my mistake really set back my entire reality. The first half of the year I really pushed for my goals, then when my setback happened, I pushed harder. What was great about this year was getting deep into my yoga practice and completing Baron Baptiste level 1 in Sedona, Arizona this past June. It was my biggest resolution of the year and completing it was life changing. I made so many amazing friendships and worked on becoming a more authentic human being.

Through all of this there was a small piece skewing any possibility of true change and that was my alcoholism. It’s not the picture you may be painting in your mind of me not being able to stop drinking and constantly drunk, it’s that I barely drank and when I did, I’d completely blackout or make a bad decision that ruined any progress of moving forward in life. Anyway enough about that, it’s now the past but I bring it up to explain the reason 2014 will be much better….it will be because I am now sober and have no plan on returning back to drinking.

With a sober mind, we bring true authenticity. Think about it, when we were children we were wild with imagination, the possibilities were endless, everyone was our friend and we could have fun doing anything, anywhere. Flash-Forward to today where we don’t know how to even look people in the eye, we see our friends over social media a million times more than face-to-face, we work and stress out leading to wine in the evening to calm us down or help us sleep, we meet our friends for “happy hour” or go out to the clubs on the weekends to have fun. We don’t know how to live with ourselves, meet romantic mates without having a drink, and our vacations are basically binge-drinking havens…why even bother buying a plane ticket somewhere you’ll only remember by all your Instagram photos!?

I kid you…that was just my story, many of you are sane non-alcoholics but if that sounds like you, we are alike.

2014 will be tough for reasons I can’t go into, but it will be worth it. A new day, a new month, a new year we create the possibility to be more authentic and happy. We have the ability to stop living our sedentary lives and move more, run more, be more. We have the ability to eat healthy food and cook our own meals. We can treat our body like it matters and treat our life like we appreciate living.

It’s quite simple.
You don’t need to make lofty resolutions to lose a million pounds and workout everyday at the gym, you just need to make the resolution to JUST SHOW UP.
They say 90% of creating a new habit is just showing up. That is the hardest part about facing our goals because we are lazy and can’t get our feet out the door.
In yoga just show up, you don’t have to rock every practice, you can just get on your mat and lay in savasana the whole class and that is more effort than anything.
With running, put your shoes on and get out the door…you can walk today. You can do the same and walk tomorrow. In time you will eventually want to run. And if you can’t, just show up to try.

It’s that simple. 2014, make the effort to show up for your life and your goals and that will make all the difference in your progress.

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It’s around 12am the night after Christmas and realize how disconnected I am from my blog. My computer stopped working a couple weeks ago and I kind of just said, “to hell with it!”. I absolutely hate updating my blog via iPhone because my words get jumbled with spelling errors so forgive me now.

It’s Christmas. A whole year has already gone by. On Sunday, I will have 5 months sober and then it’s already the new year! Holy smokes time sure does fly by.

I have had so many experiences this year that have completely changed my life. I live from a place of gratitude these days and I live from a place of content. I no longer feel the need to wish things were different, wish people were different and wish my life would have gone a better route. I no longer feel the need to lose weight…I’ve almost grown out of this blog and sometimes want to start fresh with a different point of view. It’s funny how the moment we stop suffocating the need to be different, change actually occurs. We strangle people into trying to be people they are not, relationships they are not…we try so damn hard to find the perfect diet, we spend hours in a gym trying to emphasis the person we want to become, or the person we think we are.

Life will hand us so much,
A lot of it we truly cannot control.
All we can do is be our true authentic selves.

All we should do is embrace our passion, and if we don’t know what that is yet, we should make effort to discover it. We need to dive into our fears of all forms, experience things outside our comfort zone and be more open minded. The one thing I am working on most currently is the ability to be vulnerable. Being vulnerable for me is possibly one of the hardest things to do because I have crazy abandonment issues. I fear pain and if I can control feeling it, I do. But without vulnerability we aren’t really being authentic, we are lying to ourselves and to others by walking around with walls all around us.

Another thing is that a year ago I never thought my happy medium would be that I am a sober pescatarian that believes in running and yoga over all other forms. Sure I do more than that, but my mind used to think giving up meat was stupid, and quitting alcohol forever was unrealistic. A year ago I realize I was a lot more closed-minded. I didn’t share my real feelings, I clung to diet pills, and my self image was plummeted and all I had was this blog to show accountability to change.

Well I’ve changed alright…and I never want to go back. All I want from life is the ability to actually live it, fully. I want to face my soon-to-be challenges with grace, and once I get through that I want a BIGGER game plan. I want to really do something different and possibly get out of this country…but all shall be revealed in time:) life changes so fast…and this past year has taught me that I can handle a whole lot more…but now, with grace.

 

Day 12: Write Letters to Everyone You LOVE!

Day 13: Shh!!! It’s a Secret

Day 14: Feed the Homeless

 

Let’s start with day 12: Write letters to Everyone I Love:

This little challenge ended up being long and time consuming. The only reason I decided to do it was to challenge my communication skills. Too often we replace face-to-face or pen to paper time with texting, the computer, and well basically everything has gone tech-based. How booooring and how anti-social. Before this challenge I realize I’m one of the most antisocial people I know! I blame Seattle. We tuck ourselves indoors and don’t go outside for about 9 months out of the year and are passive aggressive isolators.

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Okay I’m kidding…but I do have communication issues. I am a sober little thing going through my 12-step process and I’m on step 4 right now. We have to list all of our fears and explain why they are our fears. We have to write everyone we resent and why….and then recognize where OUR part is in everything. At the end of this process I have realized that I have abandonment issues and care too much what others think of me. I now see that my lack of intimacy or close relationships with people is based on being too afraid to be myself in fear of not being liked. Wow that’s a lot to actually take in isn’t it? I know that if any of you try this challenge, you will notice the same if you truly get honest with yourself.

So I spent the time, I wrote letters to the people I love…and it feels great to get all that love on paper to show people how much they truly mean to me. I will be delivering all of them soon.

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Day 13: Shh!! It’s a Secret…

If I were to tell you EVERY challenge of this month, I may be in trouble. This day’s challenge was good enough to happen; yet too personal to tell the whole 5 of you that read this blog. Let’s just say I was holding on to my past a little too much…sometimes when we get sober we have to throw away all the things that remind us of the substance…or in some cases, the substance itself. This was accomplished when cleaning out my closet yesterday and its good to wash my hands of it. End of story;).

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Day 14: Feed the Homeless

“The plain truth is that you must start giving before you start receiving. This is the nature of the Universe we live in”-Yogi Bhajan

Today my friend Jess and I spent the day giving. We made 25 different little notes and taped them to burgers and went around downtown Seattle. We thought about a soup kitchen volunteer idea but we felt this was more creative doing our own thing. Some streets are a little scary so it kind of took us a long time walking the streets…we expected to have a lot more people but basically we just gave the burgers to anyone picking out of garbage cans, or anyone with a sign. Some people had no idea what we were doing….they looked a little out of it, some people made no indication that we were even in front of them, and some told us they love us over and over again and smiled. Either way I have never done that before and it made me feel good to help others. I am grateful to have Jess who is willing to do all these things with me! Here are some pictures:

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I’m writing this from my horrible iPhone so sorry if there are typos. Yesterday was day 11 and I felt it was the perfect day to really self-reflect.

it’s so easy to be negative. It’s common to look in the mirror and only see what needs to be ‘fixed’. It’s easy to look at everyone else in envy and only see what you lack. Sometimes the biggest challenge is the green grass theory. The grass is not always greener on the other side, it’s green where you water it. It takes a long time for me to think of everything that is good about myself, let alone share it. But I believe it’s only when we love and appreciate the person that’s staring back at us in the mirror each day that we can truly be content, happy and free.

(this post is part of a challenge I’m doing where I go 30 days of November doing something that scares me, challenges me, or just is outside of my comfort zone, you can view the start of this here: 30 Days of Embracing YES )1389278_126980964139126_1081981302_n

“. . .sometimes one feels freer speaking to a stranger than to people one knows. Why is that?”

“Probably because a stranger sees us the way we are, not as he wishes to think we are.”

Carlos Ruiz Zafón

You’re probably wondering why I combined these days but shocker I didn’t succeed on the 6th. On the 6th I started off the day with a dear friend going over a list of fears and resentments. We in detail talked about my fears and how to let them go. I would have wrote a post about it because it is challenging….talking about fears and listing actual resentments down on paper. So often we stuff away our problems and tie them away in the back of our memories where they can be suppressed and brought up in different ways in our future. I would have write about it more but this whole write every day thing is getting hard. I don’t want to bore you people with my everyday journaling. It is although nice being held accountable for this fear challenge. I feel like it’s opening me up a lot.

This morning my challenge was to go to coffee with a stranger! I think that being able to be open and honest with strangers is very important. There is a relief in being exactly who you are and not being uncomfortable by hiding your true self. I met Kielie at yoga and I remember her from a year ago. She always wore these health coach tank tops and I would see her everyday and wonder what kind of coaching she did….back when I used to be completely distracted by peoples outfits a year ago in yoga. Anyway I’ve never talked to her before and she hasn’t been to the studio in forever but started going again a month or so ago and then I met her randomly and found out she does these free outdoor workouts on Mondays and Saturdays so we suggested we do “coffee with a stranger” since I was doing this challenge. It was a good time and easy to talk probably because we have lots in common (health, yoga). It’s good to get out of your comfort zone and meet new people. Being safe in our little social cocoons is something I need to work on, and today I faced one of my fears.

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