Want to optimize your relationship? My hubby, Brian, and I created a class with 10 of our favorite Big Ideas on how to do that –starting with a definition of love then looking at the difference between falling in vs. standing in love and then some nuts and bolts Ideas on how to rock it!
Here’s an intro video for our Love 101 class! 🙂 You can get access to the Class + Workbook + Meditation in our $10.00 a month membership: https://brianjohnson.me/love
I loved my time offline and I also made some big distinctions on what my year is all about!
One of the biggest ones was to create guided meditations and affirmations and also teach with my husband in his Optimize membership program.
We are releasing 2 classes a month and the first class is how to have thegreatest year ever! Here’s a quick intro:
I created a guided meditation and an affirmations track for the members and here is a PDF with the top big ideas from the class: Greatest Year Ever 101 Poster
We just filmed a Love 101 class together and we’ll be sharing it in February to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Here’s a snapshot of that one.
And…I will also be teaching a bunch of other classes in the membership like Mommahood 101 and Rock Your Goddess Life 101 andNutrition 101.
Oh, and I am also launching a podcast called: Momma Goddesson iTunes in the next 2 months. I will let you know when it’s live! 🙂
My theme for this year is Simplicity and Depth! I’m simplifying my life even more and going deep. Deep love, deep rest, deep work, deep play! And, my biggest creative intention this year…my one thing is to get pregnant again. Happy dances! So, everything I do will be in alignment with my greatest desire for 2016. 🙂
I’d love to hear what your year is all about! What’s your one thing? What’s your theme? Sending you lots of love and awesomeness!!
I will be offline from December 19th until January 4th. I will complete the year with stillness, calm and restoration. I am intending to reset my body and mind and gain more clarity on my biggest intentions for 2016. I have lots of fun plans but wanting to “be” with them more and go deeper in order to feel what resonates the most on a soul level.
During the next 2 weeks I plan to go at an even slower pace, sleep more, be more mindful, do less reading and writing and more meditating and resting. I’m still following my Brain & Body Optimization Game too. My sole intention is to care for my family and rejuvenate as much as possible. A Momma style staycation. 🙂
I share more about why I’ve chosen to do this in the video below:
Here are the resources that I talked about in the video:
Vipassana meditation – 10 day silent meditation. No talking, no writing, no reading. You meditate for 10 hours a day, sleep, walk and eat. That’s it. It’s intense and amazing! I am going to do a super modified version of this. 😉
Amen Clinics – We did a brain scan + QEEG with Daniel Amen and he saw some ways I could optimize and heal my brain even more. Love his work!
Neurofeedback– I am doing this to help balance out my left and right hemispheres. The QEEG actually showed that my brain is doing pretty well with one spot on the right hemisphere that needs a little bit more love.
EMDR therapy – This helps people “heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences”. Daniel Amen noticed some subtle things on my brain scan that could have been from emotional upset. He recommended I do it, so I am doing some sessions.
Alrighty…I am off! Kinda nervous (hehe). But, I also know it’s going to be awesome! 🙂
I sometimes feel the bubbling of impatience as I mother. I observe myself and other parents wrestling with this desire to hurry up and get our little people to go where we want them to go. Children move at a slower rhythm and our prodding and pushing can disrupt their natural flow.
When I feel into the natural pace of children and then adults, there is a huge disparity between the two. This can cause a lack of harmony which usually results in unnecessary struggle. I don’t believe we need to force or coerce our children to do daily tasks. I see it as a partnership. I often ask myself how I would want to be treated.
For example: let’s say I am fully engaged in something I love like writing, reading or exercising. I am in my flow and someone comes up and jumps into my bliss and says: Hurry up. Let’s go. We are leaving right now to go do (fill in the blank). It would feel jarring and disorienting. Why would this be any different for our children? Yet, we expect them to just go with our pace and tempo.
One of the best pieces of parenting wisdom I’ve received was from the late Magda Gerber; her recommendation was one simple word: Wait! Silently repeating it to ourselves if needed. Wait…Wait… Wait... When we make a request…pause, wait, and give our children space to process. When we feel the urge to push our children to do something like put their pajamas on, change their diaper or brush their teeth. Remember to wait.
Create more space in your mind and your life so you can give the gift of spaciousness. A natural flow will emerge, even if it feels counterintuitive. There can be a concern that by giving them more space they’ll never actually do what we are asking, but that hasn’t been my experience. Usually, I am astonished at how just a few minutes of patience can create so much more peace.
This may sound easy but it’s a monumental task to feel the rise of frustration and choose to wait and breathe. This doesn’t mean we are permissive with our parenting and let them do whatever they want whenever they want to do it. It just means giving more time and presence in order for them to move from their center.
Our role as parents is to create a safe haven for our children to thrive and also hold strong boundaries so they learn how to be a collaborator within the family. Treating them with respect and love and trusting that just because they are smaller and their brains aren’t fully formed that they understand, because they do. Their knowing may not always be an intellectual understanding. Most of the time (especially when they are young) this knowing is an energetic transmission.
The mother sets the tone, rhythm and culture for the family. We must be centered and attuned so we can create a flow that works for everyone. Sometimes this means there are time constraints we must honor in order to create harmony within the whole. This may upset our children’s desire for play and exploration which may include upset and tears.
This doesn’t mean something’s wrong. It just means we need to hold more loving space for them as they integrate the emotions that are arising. We all have these emotions and children just express them more fully and outwardly than we do. If we can hold space and allow their emotions to flow like a river they will move right through them.
It’s a constant dance. It’s vital for us, as mothers, to honor our desires and also our children’s. When these desires conflict (as they often can), I usually get down on my knees or pick my son up so we can connect eye to eye. Then, I say: I see that you want this and I want this. Let’s make a deal.
We talk about creative ways we can both get our needs met. Some days this goes smoother than others and sometimes we need to re-negotiate deals again and again. The simple practice of slowing down enough to listen, connect and be in relationship with my child makes such a big difference.
The reality is that children go slower than adults. They explore, they’re curious and ask questions, they see and experience the world with completely different eyes. If we are going to authentically connect we must tune into their level of absorption and focus…their enthusiasm for the ordinary. This isn’t easy for most of us.
Our culturally conditioned adult minds tend to move faster. Much faster and disembodied. Life is a full embodied experience for children — mind, body and spirit. So-called grown ups can tend to be distracted with future thinking about what’s next, where we need to go, what needs to get done.
I continually play with the rise of hurriedness I feel sometimes. This urge to hurry up. When I notice myself projecting into the future while I am at the park with my son or thinking about the dinner I still need to make, or wanting to be doing something more interesting, etc. I stop the mental chatter and ask myself to come back to the present.
I inquire into how can I sink more into this moment so that I can find the joy right where I stand. I ask: How can I be fully engaged with my child? Learn from him? He knows presence way better than I do. In many ways in the pursuit of adulthood I’ve unlearned the simple joys of living. Being with him helps me settle back into my natural soul pace.
The art of motherhood fascinates me. It’s a completely different pace and reality than most of the world. I wonder if this is why it can feel so challenging to be a modern mom? The email, the iPhones, the technology moves at the pace of electricity. Children don’t.
Our relationships don’t move in this way. They need space to explore and to feel and to rest in order to flourish. There is a rush we feel when we work, or are engaged with adults because most of the time the vibe is higher and faster. It feels more in sync with our racing minds. If we want to experience joyful parenting we can’t try to operate our home in the same way we would if were leading a meeting, managing a business, or trying to get 100 things done in a day.
There are days I wish for more excitement in my daily life. More burst of electricity and less of the mundane. Then, I step back and see. I see that motherhood is calling me deeper into myself and deeper into life. Which is what my soul wants more than anything. I want to live deeper. I want to feel more. I want to experience more. I want to feel the pulse of life running through my veins. This takes patience and practice. It’s not glamorous and it can be challenging. But, what could more powerful than returning to my natural essence?
Motherhood is changing me in ways I could’ve never imagined. I am grateful because it’s calling me home in a way I’ve been desiring for a long time. I just didn’t think it would look like this. I thought it would be more graceful and more easeful with more sparkles and joy. Not there aren’t a lot of those moments…because there are. But it’s…well, a whole lot harder than I envisioned.
I imagine it’s easier for some. But, for me it’s been a deconstruction phase where I’ve challenged my beliefs about time, love, joy and success. I continually choose to create the sacred in the ordinary again and again and again.
This has opened up space for a whole new re-invention of self that I wasn’t even aware existed. I could have missed this call for transformation but I’ve done my best to stay present to what’s real and true for me. Even during those times I wish things felt easier I hear the emergence of my true self whispering to keep on…there’s more unfolding you just can’t see it right now.
It’s all a work in progress. I am no zen priestess but I am slowly learning there is no need to hurry. I can sit for a bit longer. I can rest in the moment a bit longer. I can enjoy the sun on my face and feel the joy in my heart as I watch my son completely and fully be himself.
Why would I want to hurry this? My desire and practice is to be passionately present and engaged and connected. My son is my teacher on this one. His natural pace and essence is guiding me to a place I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have experienced if I wasn’t his mother.
The hardest part of stepping into motherhood was the feeling that I lost some of my spark, my creativity, my freedom. Now, I smile (most days) because I know that’s not true. I am finding an even more authentic voice and spark and an internal freedom. Transformation takes time, persistence, diligence and a willingness to see the light even as we navigate the unknown. And, motherhood is the definition of flux.
May I be present to the magic that is always unfolding. May I trust in the flow of life. May I rest in the joy that is always available. May I be engaged and present. May I be willing to slow down and go at a completely difference pace than the collective. May I move from a place of rest, ease and grace. May I continue to honor the sacred duty of being a mother.
Here’s a little free flow blissitation to support you in resting today:
For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
I am becoming a lover of simple things. This is new within the last 5+ years, and more so since becoming a mother. I used to be pretty driven, always focusing on the future, dreaming bigger and higher and wanting to be and do more. I still have those desires but they aren’t at the forefront as much. Simplicity is.
I’ve experienced again and again it’s the little things that give me true joy. They aren’t usually about money, recognition, status or numbers of any kind. If I can stop long enough to breathe and settle into the moment there is so much wonder and delight…a richness that is hard to describe. These pauses help slow down the racing mind that can be consumed with time and getting it all done and a tendency to rush from one thing to the next.
The practice is to unbusy my mind and fully engaged in sensory awareness. This bestows so much more daily grace. These pauses of celebration inspire an unhurried life. I like this. To truly acknowledge the power of the moment. The abundance of the sun shining on my face as a new day begins, seeing my child laugh, having the freedom and resources to make healthy meals, taking leisurely walks playing and exploring, listening to a heart felt song, connecting with my family, being present to my life and all the magic that is unfolding. The bigness in the simple things is my central focus these days.
This can’t be captured on facebook or twitter or in a bank account, for this is a visceral experience captured in our hearts and bodies in a very tangible way. It’s a way of inhabiting our lives, realizing there is no “getting there”, “arriving”, or “having it all figured out”. This. Is. It. Our life journey…in all it’s colors, dimensions, textures and flavors. It’s the collection of simple things that come together to weave our precious individual stories.
We must limit the noise in our heads and our lives and be willing to slow down enough so that we can actually embrace these moments. Otherwise we miss them. The simple magical moments require attention, presence and recognition. When you feel one. Stop. Smile. Feel it in your body. Listen to the vibration of life happening all around you. Rest and delight in that particular snapshot of time.
I believe the deep breaths, the sun, the water, tuning into my senses, the wonder around me and the little moments of joy can lighten and soften the occasional feelings of overwhelm and overload. Trusting that our life is unfolding with divine perfection. Resting in that place.
Resting our minds and our bodies even while we get things done. There can be a peace, a flow even in the midst of the mess. Life is messy. There will always be toys and dishes to clean up, and things to get done. As long as we are breathing there will be details that need tending.
The listening and resting helps. It’s where we hear the call for expansion…the call for a deeper authentic life. The simplicity gently guides us with grace, love, and enthusiasm. How can we dance with the big and the small with utmost respect and importance? Boldly saying yes to it all! Yes to our lives!
Last night as we transitioned from dinner to bedtime rituals I paused looking at the kitchen before turning off the light. My husband had graciously done the dishes. There were a few things that weren’t cleaned up. A few glasses, supplement bottles, and some dishes drying next to the sink. With the eyes of perfection I would’ve wished that it was cleaner. With the eyes of beauty I saw life. I saw our lives.
These little things we do every day make up our lives. They are yes, just glasses/dishes/bottles on the counter, but they were used by people I love. I smiled and thought yes, this is my life. It’s not sterile and perfect, but it’s mine.
There is magic in our day to day lives. The simplicity of most of our days sculpt our life stories. These divine tasks mold our character. The miracles may not seem big but they are, for if we only feel deeper we will see the love. We get to choose how we will weave our myth. Why not choose one of magic and miracles right where we stand?
There may be thoughts that it’s not enough. We can look at what is happening in the world and think we must do more and be more. But, as Byron Katie advised in a workshop I attended a few months ago: we must save ourselves first. This is how we change the world. Be the change we want to see. What world do we want to live in and create? It starts with us.
Even if we think our little space in the universe can’t really change the world. It can and it is. Because our choices are changing us, changing our families and therefore our communities and world. Our presence impacts the world. We must start where we are and let spirit/god/life move through us it guides us to our next adventure. It’s that simple. Today I honor the magic and bigness in the simple things. This is what’s calling me. What’s calling you?
Shame is the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging – something we’ve experienced, done, or failed to do makes us unworthy of connection.
I’m chatting with my Mom on the phone. I love my Mom, she’s my best friend. She proceeds to tell me 2 family members have recently made comments that my son’s shirt had stains on it and that his hair was matted. I felt the initial heat rise, wanting to get nit picky. I instead launched into why I don’t agree and then started justifying (or protecting) myself from these comments.
My pep talk went something like this: Hello, he’s a boy! He gets dirty and sometime spills on his shirts. And…he has longer hair and it’s not matted. I use a detangler and try to comb them out and yet, still in the morning they are back. Could I do it better? Of course and I’m not too concerned with a few stains and snarls. I make all of our food, I gave birth naturally, he’s never sick. So there!
Ah! I felt a bit better. My Mom patiently listened to me. Then I finished with: There is only so much time in a day and I am more interested in my child eating healthy food and moving as much as he can. Not looking picture perfect all the time. Plus, I think we are both rockin’ it and ain’t no snarls and stains gonna get me down!
Note: My kid does take baths and washes his hair (haha). I personally think his hair is awesome with a few snarls and all. And..sometimes I spill things on my shirt….and don’t brush my hair everyday. So…it’s clearly not top on my list of priorities.;)
I got off the phone still feeling slightly triggered. I glanced at the kitchen sink that had dishes in it from yesterday’s cooking. I found it odd that I was upset about it now. Because just this morning I actually danced around the island listening and singing to All About That Bass, celebrating my life and feeling good even though the kitchen was a mess. I knew I’d clean it today but as I stood there with agitation…I felt a hit of what?? Shame!? Is shame lurking behind the scenes right now I wondered…
I dug a little deeper. I realized this is a part of me I keep integrating (+ accepting) more and more. I’m not interested in interior design or fashion. It’s not my thing. It never has been. Currently, I am more comfortable in yoga clothes, vibrams with my hair pulled up (usually not brushed). It feels easy and functional to do the things I’ve deemed most important like moving my body. If I was all dressed up in restricted clothes I might not move as much as I do now…but, I digress (that’s a whole other post).
Occasionally, a voice pipes up telling me I should care more about home design and what I wear. I get inspired for like a minute to do something about it and then I realize I don’t currently want to invest my time and energy into that. I am clear on what lights my fire and that’s not it. I’d rather read a book, go for a walk or take a nap. 🙂
While it seems our culture is all about photoshop, perfection, makeup and looking like a celebrity; I am all about wearing less makeup, getting down the truth of who I am and being more real and authentic and not having to look picture perfect in order to be worthy. I’ve tried the other path and it never felt like it fit.
For many years I slept with a futon on the floor. As long as I had my journal, books and good healthy food in my home I was golden. I could probably wear the same outfit every single day for a month (or year) and it wouldn’t negatively effect my sense of aliveness or creativity. My “makeup” consists of moisturizer, boom that I use on my cheeks and lips, mascara and occasionally natural mineral makeup and some eye liner. That’s 5 products. I love the simplicity.
I realize it’s not an either/or choice…and there’s no one right camp. The only camp I am interested in is the one that truly resonates for me and my willingness to own it more and more. And…I can totally appreciate the opposite perspective as well, it’s just not my current interest. We all have our own style, flava and season of expression so there’s room for all of our divine uniqueness.
So…after a few minutes of excavating through my thoughts and emotions. I walked to the park pushing my son in the stroller and I had the thought: I am actually an interior designer. My designer skills are more oriented towards the interior landscape of consciousness. The feeling/emotional/mental/spiritual realms of life design.
It can be so easy to focus on the “spots” where we aren’t the strongest and let that outshine our true greatness. I’m talking figuratively and metaphorically here. I do believe we need to be aware of stains and spots but not allow them to take center stage.
We need to have a clear sense of who are and embrace it fully and lean into our strengths. There’s not doubt our weaknesses can diminish our shine so it’s important we don’t let let them kick the joy out. But there is only one main stage. Who’s voice is that gonna be? Hopefully our highest self.
Yet there was more…I pondered…What’s underneath my trigger? I’m well aware that we aren’t the most “fashionable” family ever. I am also well aware that I am *really* proud of myself for the mother I am. I gave birth naturally at home and I’ve done my best to give him the most loving and nourishing home life as possible – from the nutrition, to RIE, to reading and studying and my deep commitment to being an awesome parent. Shame can’t take that away from me.
But, there was still an urge to say: Screw you and throw some criticisms their way. But, is that really what I want? Does this really matter? What would I say about these two family members if today was there last day? I wouldn’t criticize. I would celebrate all their awesomeness. So, why waste time doing it now? I don’t want to fight back, blame or justify myself. I just want to be myself.
Criticism doesn’t support me in who I know myself to be. It doesn’t elevate it belittles. There’s a feeling of relief and righteousness when I criticize someone. But, what’s really hiding behind the criticism is my hurt and a feelings sense that I’m not being seen for all the good I am actually doing and for who I truly am.
Wait a second how the heck did I get to this place. It was just a short little chat with my Mom about hair and stains. No big deal. Oh, how shame weaves a powerful web of illusion.
In the big scheme of life this is petty stuff. And, yet if not addressed can ruin our days, years, lives if we don’t investigate. So I take a few deep breathes and ask how I can grow? What can I learn here?
I think about what I love and appreciate about these 2 family members. I can find a lot of good and gratitude if I am willing to step out of irritation. Then, I think about the things I love an appreciate about myself. Who I am and all the ways I’ve grown and changed over the years and how I am getting better and better every day.
I look at the “comments” objectively and look for the kernel of truth with a growth mindset. Can I work on my son’s snarls more? Yes, of course I can. Can I be more aware of stains and change his shirts more often throughout the day? Yes, I can. This doesn’t mean I will always choose to do it. But, I can. I have that choice.
I can also work on the snarls of criticism and blame in my mind and scrub some of the self limiting stains from my consciousness as well. We all have limiting mental drama in our minds that could use a bit more attention and elbow grease to clean up the clutter that blocks our power.
I also can see how both of these family members have an amazing talent with organization and cleaning. This is their strong suit. I can learn from them. It is no secret that this hasn’t been one of mine. I’ve already improved so much over the years and I keep refining my systems and habits to get even better. Everything can be for our growth.
If we can step far enough back and question, meditate, and see the bigger picture then all the so-called criticisms can be used to our advantage, for our transformation. When we point our finger at someone there is always more fingers pointing back at us. Which means we have more work to do. This is actually exciting when we can do it from a place of love, kindness and awareness. Listen with curiosity to our shame because it’s always calling us to come home to our essence.
We all have our strengths and weaknesses. Don’t let the snarls, stains and shame get you down. See the growth opportunity and seize it. Use criticism to catapult you to the next level. Don’t swim in a shame storm, it does no good. We are all doing the best we can and we can also do better. The criticisms, frustration, and anger can lead us to a more fulfilled life. We are all splendidly imperfect. See the beauty in it all. It’s there.
Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive. Howard Thurman
Affirmation: I feel enthusiastic, energized, radiant, powerful, and joyful!
* 7:30 bulletproof decaff coffee w/cacao powder/coconut milk/mct oil/stevia
* 10:00 power smoothie (homemade almond milk, steamed spinach, blueberries, maca, stevia leaf, collagen)
* 12:30 handful of plaintain chips (planned on a juice but the place was closed)
* 3:00 chicken dipped in primal kitchen mayo (love this stuff)
* 6:00 butternut squash soup with sauteed chard and ground beef topped with avocado + few bites of a persimmon
Movement:5 minute walk at 6:15 w/ E to walk the doggie + 20 minute strength workout (pretty light but did get heart rate up) +10 minute walk + 10 minute walk + 10 minute family walk
Meditation: 20 minutes + 45 minute napitation and listened to this 4 minute Blissitation: Power Strength & Courage:
Book Love: I recently finished these books: The Loving Diet. This one’s about going beyond paleo into the heart of what ails you. I really loved it because it’s about choosing to love yourself and life no matter what your physical ailments are. Jessica, the author, focuses on the autoimmune protocol in her practice but she also brings a lovely heart centered approach to healing that I really dig.
Kale and Coffee. I’ve known about Kevin Gianni (The Renegade) for years. His book is all about his journey to finding health, happiness, and longevity. I enjoyed reading his story because I was pretty intense (like him) with the vegan (high raw) diet. I appreciated his honesty, courage and willingness to explore all avenues of health to see what works best for his body even when it challenged what he believed to be true.
Notes from a Blue Bike. It’s another memoir all about the the art of living intentionally in a chaotic world. Tsh is a wife and a mother to 3 kids. I love reading about how other mothers are creating their desired lives. It takes courage to create sacred boundaries in order to live the lives we most want. She’s a great writer and it was a fun to travel around the world through her eyes.
Body Goodness:I’ve been slowly getting off the bulletproof coffee. I liked the potential health and longevity theory but I didn’t notice any big benefits. And, I feel like a green smoothie/juice would probably be a better choice for me. Happy I tried it though.
Dr. Amen gave me some Serotonin Mood Support to help optimize my brain from what he saw on my brain scans mostly my limbic system being a bit overactive and signs of some trauma (from the last year with mold, our dog being killed and our best friend’s death). I think I notice a difference. I start my moon cycle in the next few days and I don’t feel the slight irritability + heightened emotional sensitivity that can come up for me at this time. Go serotonin boost! 🙂
Mind/Heart Goodness: I am inspired to simplify even more and to keep refining my essentials and rockin’ the simple habits that add the most power and joy to my daily life. I get *really* excited about a lot of habits and things I want to do and can tend to want to do them all (now!). 🙂
I’m bringing in my focus and only picking a few. This feels a bit challenging but I also know I will master more habits in the long run doing it this way. The question that is at the forefront of my mind is: What is most important now?What will have the greatest impact on my life today, next month, next year? What would it look/feel like if I did these habits every day? Simple wins and creating sustainable success!
Gratitude & Appreciation: I am grateful for the blue sky and clouds. They seem extraordinarily beautiful today as we walked and played outside. I am grateful for the abundance of yummy fruits and vegetables we have access to every week. I am grateful for books. Every day so much gratitude for books and the awesome people who wrote them! I am grateful for all the sweet little interactions we have with people around town. I am grateful for everyone who helped built the new park by our house. I am grateful for the Internet and all the amazing people I’ve met because of it, including my husband! I am grateful for the life and family we’ve created together.