As he sat across from me in my office, I could see the energy swirling around his head. (I am also an energy healer.)

My client was in a virtual tornado of thought patterns wreaking havoc on his life. As it pressed upon him, the mental rollercoaster of overthinking, worry and anxiety was obvious.FoodDecisions

Today, we live lives that are non-stop continuous pressure and stress for many people, and most of my clients. They are overworked, overscheduled, overbusy, overtired. The result is not just diminished enjoyment of life, but diminished intelligence, cognitive ability and resilience.

Why do we live this way?

To be blunt, we’re looking for validation, security and a feeling of adequacy. And, sadly, running around to please others (whether that’s the boss, the spouse, the parents, the family, the friends who work just as hard) will NEVER give us those things.

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yogalake4Every year, I tally up my exercise logs from the year.

I don’t track food in any way (never have), but exercise is different.

One of the things I realized this year is:  I have a long history with exercise.

I never thought I’d say that!

It’s amazing because I was once the couch potato queen. I used to HATE exercise, as in hate with a fiery white passion.

But, things change.

And, if you are driving change from an empowered place, change is good!

But I want to talk to those you who are just now, at the beginning of a new year, struggling with the idea of exercise. The many myths about exercise in our culture can actually cause more harm than good when they break down the body, resulting in extreme depletion, fatigue or injury.

Here are a few things I learned as I lost 92 lbs and kept it off for fifteen years:

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One of my friends, who happens to have a great deal of spiritual mastery, was talking with me recently.

As we discussed the amount of incredible busyness, stress and pressure in today’s culture, he said this phrase to me:

 say NO better

 

Say.

No.

Better.

It struck a chord immediately.say no4

Boundaries are a constant topic in coaching as my clients seek to establish safe structure in their relationships, at work and at home with their children and partners.

I’m not exempt from pressure, being a female business owner with a son in college.

My friend was encouraging me to say NO more often, and with more effect.

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This Thanksgiving week, I feel especially grateful for my health and happiness.

Often, when I’m giving a speech or presenting a workshop, I make this statement:

“Today, I’m grateful I struggled with excess weight for thirty years.”

gratitude

It seems I always have at least half an audience who become incredulous at that statement, but, now that I’m on the other side of struggle, it’s quite easy to see the life lessons I learned on my way to success:

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In today’s world, women are stressed, exhausted and waaaaayyyyy too busy.  Is it any surprise excess weight is the result?

When stress hormones run rampant within the body, the addrenal glands are overworked, affecting every gland and organ in the body… and the body is not able to efficiently deal with the toxicity created… fatigue and fat are natural results.

It’s time for a different perspective, especially if you want permanent weight loss.

 

Is this how you gather strength…

cinnamonrolls

 

 

 

so you can take care of everyone else?

MomSon

In the last forty years, women have made tremendous advances in the world, busting down boundaries, raising the glass ceiling, taking more responsibility and wielding more power – and don’t misunderstand me – those are all tremendous accomplishments.

But, there’s a problem.

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Diets almost never promote permanent weight loss, and they can leave behind a damning misperception of how to treat the body.

Diets can leave us with a sense that we should constantly falsely restrict the amount we eat.

AND they can cause binging, which expands the stomach and our sense of fullness.

Here’s the easiest way to measure the amount of food to eat at a given meal – an organic method the yogis use which is simple, requires no utensils, and always “at hand.”

hands

 

Your own hands.  Form a solid joint between the blades (outer edge) of the hands from the tip of the pinkie to the wrist.

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Nothing is better for a human being than change. It enlivens, awakens, empowers. It’s a breeding ground for staying positive. Change for my clients means weight loss, greater health, new or better relationships, enlivening careers, and better leadership of self and others.

No matter what brings them to me, there’s a deeper need. They all seek to feel better, about themselves and the world. We all seek positivity and pleasure in life, whether we are conscious of this or not. If we are unconscious of our basic need to feel good, we often subvert it into addictive behaviors – grabbing bits of pleasure from overeating, overspending, overdrinking, oversexing, or even watching too much TV (where we can laugh but stay disengaged from real life).

Finding a truly positive place and staying there, however, are two different things.

With positivity and pleasure being a natural need of all human beings, why doesn’t it ALWAYS stick around when we find it? It makes sense, once there’s a breakthrough to the positive side of life, to keep the feelings around.

If that happened, you’d see people everywhere like this:

staying-positive

Two things can happen to your positivity.

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Just because the idea of “Conscious Uncoupling” hit the news via a celebrity divorce doesn’t mean it’s not a good idea.  Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin may be making headlines with their divorce, but couples have been creating guilt-free, drama-free transitions that serve their greater good for years.

In 2005, I coached a woman who was avoiding a divorce because she didn’t want to displease friends and family.  Both she and her husband had acknowledged they weren’t interested in continuing the relationship.  They had deep differences and very divergent ideas of their future.  (I tell her story with her permission.)

letgo2

“I’m only avoiding it because I dread the reaction of everyone else.  I dread the trauma.  I fear we’ll be stigmatized as losers.  The truth is, we’re very happy when we are apart.”

“So, what are you going to create from these facts?” I asked her.

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