How to practice self love daily

How do you start your day?

~Life is an endless process of self discovery~

Self-love is not a trend, it is not something you do when you feel like it.  You don’t just “do self-love” after a break up or after you experience trauma.  Self-love is a life long practice that needs to be added to your every day life. With self-love comes the releasing of negative thoughts and self-criticism by embracing more of a loving and positive acceptance of yourself through forgiveness of yourself and others.

The Universal concept is that our thoughts create our actions and therefore those thoughts dictate the outcome in our lives.  Self-love is a very powerful and necessary practice and critical if you want to have healthy relationships with others.

Self-love is not selfish!

Taking care of and loving ourselves and being a whole, sound and emotionally healthy person allows us to take care of others without it feeling like a burden. If you aren’t taking care of yourself, if you don’t rest and relax your soul, then you will be of no help to others— especially yourself.  You will eventually feel drained and eventually there will be nothing left to give.  You must give to yourself as well as give to others.

Below is a a simple self-love checklist that may seem overwhelming to you at first, however, I promise that if you commit to adding a majority of them into your daily routine or practice as I like to call it, every single day, you’ll see the benefits immediately.

45 Ways to Practice Self-Love

  1. Create a quiet and safe zone in your home (may it be a corner, a closet, or a spare rom and deem it your “space”)
  2. Buy yourself fresh flowers (or cut them from your garden and display them)
  3. Grow a garden of fresh vegetables
  4. Start an exercise routine (yoga, pilates, the gym, take a walk) – increase those endorphins (see Creating a workout routine you can and will stick to)
  5. Read, take a nap, listen to music, sit quietly – please just rest your soul
  6. Buy yourself some new makeup and play with it
  7. Create a daily bucket list and post it
  8. Repeat the following mantra “I love and accept myself”
  9. Make a list of all the things you like about yourself
  10. Create a gratitude journal (see How to start Journaling – Keystone Habit)
  11. Start your day with meditation and yoga
  12. Implement a “treat yourself day” (mine is Friday)
  13. Dress nice, even if you don’t have to, put on those earrings, scarf and lipstick and show the world how beautiful you are
  14. Take a breath between your bites of food and savor the taste
  15. Make yourself a hot cup of coffee or tea and savor each sip
  16. Have a protein or collagen smoothie every morning
  17. Sleep at least 7 hours a day
  18. Say no and be ok with it
  19. Pay it forward, always
  20. Make someone feel good whenever you can
  21. Smile often, even if no one is smiling at you (they may think you are weird but that is ok)
  22. Eat food that is nourishing (put down the boxed food – unless its treat day)
  23. Get a massage and have them use essential oils
  24. Go for a hike or long walk in nature
  25. Be confident (walk and talk with confidence)
  26. Learn something new – dance classes, yoga, tennis lessons, start or join a MeetUp group
  27. Host a ladies night
  28. Call a friend and laugh for hours about nothing (no complaining)
  29. Spend time with your kids before they grow up and move away 😦
  30. Get a new haircut and/or buy some new makeup
  31. Eat chocolate guilt free (maybe on treat day)
  32. When someone offers your a compliment, simply say, “Thank you”
  33. Travel solo
  34. Set a no screen time in your house (dinner, after 9, etc)
  35. Set goals (see Improve your life with these simple Keystone Habits)
  36. Take a day off and do something nice for yourself (go to the gym, coffee shop, shop, meet a friend for lunch, take a walk, sleep)
  37. Self-love mantra: “I am enough. I have enough. I do enough”
  38. Let go of what no longer serves you
  39. Buy a diffuser and infuse essential oils like lavender
  40. Write a letter to yourself and put it away for a year
  41. Host a dinner party
  42. Hire a coach or a counselor (see The real benefits of working with a Life Coach)
  43. Take a hot bath with Epsom salt and lavender (or whatever your favorite oil is)
  44. Make new friends (and remove those toxic ones)
  45. Clean out your closet and donate clothes you no longer wear

The biggest message I have is, be gentle with yourself and always honor where you are at every stage of your Journey.

The best advice I have been given – ever is to ~feel your feelings~

Namaste’

Contact Us if you would like to work with a coach to help you kick start your self-love and self care routine!

How do you start your day?

“Every day we are born again” – Buddha

Over time and by creating daily KeyStone Habits you can learn to transform your life into the one you deserve.  For this, I like to use the term – stepping stones.  Every little step you take brings you one step closer to your new and healthy life.

With stepping stones you literally take each and every day, one step at a time.  It takes self awareness, inspiration, determination and the drive to want to change and the commitment to stay on task (and focused) as you begin your new Journey.  I know, because I have done this work and although there were times I wanted to quit, I am so grateful I didn’t.

It takes 26 days for a habit to become a lifestyle.

There are so many ways to begin making little but impactful changes in your life. Personally I found that starting with a morning routine was the best place to begin my Journey to an emotionally healthy lifestyle.

Thankfully I am a morning person so creating a morning routine was easy as well as exciting for me.  This routine is very important to me as it provides me with much needed structure and it gives me something to look forward to each day as I rise in the morning.  This positive start to my day gets my head in the right place so I am ready to tackle my day with a clear mind and a peaceful soul.

I am grateful for this practice and I continue to alter it to adjust to life’s little changes and challenges.


Below are some”morning ritual” ideas to help you create your own daily practice –

  • Wake up with the sunrise (“early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise” – Benjamin Franklin, famously)
  • Drink a glass of room temperature water (with lemon if you can – fantastic liver cleanse)
  • Intermittent fasting
  • Walk the dog / get on the treadmill (I don’t care how cold or hot it is, get that body moving)
  • Make a collagen smoothie – google smoothie recipes for some awesome ideas
  • Brush your teeth, wash your face, give yourself a mini facial or at least a detox scrub (I have some fantastic organic facial recipes to share)
  • Do at least 20 minutes of yoga stretches or if you are feeling bold do a 30 minute power yoga session 🙂
  • Start an exercise routine
  • Make a hot cup of coffee or tea – drink it slow and savor the flavor 🙂
  • Meditate for at least 5 minutes (download the Simple Habit, Calm or HeadSpace app for an easy guided meditation) – or just sit in silence as you drink your tea/coffee/smoothie
  • Practice grounding and earthing
  • Peruse your garden and cut fresh flowers for your home – assuming you have a garden, if not, steal your neighbors flowers and put them in a vase (LOL, kidding, well, kind of)
  • Write in your journal (express your gratitude, set your goals, write down your worries and let them go) – Don’t know how to journal or where to begin?  start here
  • Read your gratitude list out loud and thank the Universe, God, Buddha, whatever you believe in for another beautiful day in this life
  • Take a hot shower and be in the moment (you can also take a hot bath with Epsom salt and lavender before bed to wash away the day)
  • Get ready for your day (do your hair, put on makeup)
  • Dress to impress (even if you work from home – yoga pants are not pants)
  • If you commute, put on your favorite music or audio book – enjoy the time you have to yourself

Its just as easy and important to create an “evening wind-down ritual” as well (Contact Us for ideas to create your evening ritual).

Until soon!

Namaste

Things I wish I did years ago…

But I am putting them into practice now!  So, better late than not at all.

I could share a long story about why these are critical exercises but I don’t feel that is necessary.  We all have our story and my hope here is to provide guidance to those who need it.

So here we go….

  1. Embrace the difficult – there is power in the pain, strength in the struggle and knowledge you receive from lessons you are meant to learn. My advice: learn your lessons the first time and there will be less struggle.   Struggle = success, strength & progress
  2. Exercise Daily! – if you have been following me or have read any of my blogs you know I believe that exercise is the end all be all to happiness or at least the start of it.  I believe the Journey to happiness starts with giving your body the movement that it needs to release the essential endorphins and get the happiness flowing inside you.  We were NOT made to be sedentary.  Get moving, start exercising TODAY!  Take a walk, get on your treadmill, do some yoga, go to the gym.  Whatever you fancy…do it.
  3. Be Grateful – for every single aspect of your life.  Even the struggle.  Wake up and be grateful you are alive, for your hot cup of coffee, for sunlight, a job that pays you, friends that you spend time with.  There is ALWAYS something to be grateful for.  Gratitude = manifesting more things to be grateful for
  4. Enjoy the simplicity of life – wake up with the sunrise, take a walk in nature, read to your kids, cook a nice meal, make a hot cup of coffee or tea and sit on the deck and just listen to the birds, play in your garden, read a good book, take a walk at sunset and thank the Universe for another day.  It is the simplicity of life that brings us the most happiness, believe it or not.
  5. Keep a Journal or two – I have multiple journals…one for my thoughts, one for my goals, a small one that I carry around with me where I jot down ideas, stories or things I simply want to try.   Journaling is a fabulous way to release the ruminating thoughts that take over your brain.  It is also one of the top Keystone Habits (after exercise).  I journal every morning as part of my morning ritual.
  6. Complain less and appreciate more – if things are hard and you are at your end, instead of complaining, which solves nothing, find solutions.  Make small changes (baby steps), start implementing Keystone Habits, you must do something OR accept what is.  Complaining = negative energy
  7. Don’t settle for less than you deserve – if you are not ready for a relationship, do not start one.  If you are dating and you know the person isn’t right for you…let them go.  Learn how to be with yourself.  Figure out what you want in a person and don’t settle for anything less.  You know what you want, and what you are worth so why settle for anything less?  Settling = cheating yourself out of something amazing
  8. Do not judge others – this was and is still a huge lesson for me.  It’s very easy for us to make a judgment based off an encounter with someone.  However, we don’t know their life story and have no idea what their struggle is.  So we make a judgment about them that is completely unfair.  You do not know where a person has been or what they are going through, so be kind and accept them for who they are and where they are at that moment.
  9. Be kind for no reason – smile at the cashier at Target, maybe she doesn’t smile back or even know why you’re smiling, it doesn’t matter.  Say “good morning” to people as you walk down the street to your office.  Compliment someone’s shoes, hair or hat.  Hold the door or elevator.  Do something nice for someone, you have no idea what a person is going through and you might just make their day.
  10. De-Clutter and simplify – you have read this before, but its true…get rid of clutter, remove all items you no longer use.  If you haven’t touched it in three years and is not a family heirloom and it doesn’t hold sweet memories..toss it!  Downsize, live within your means and surround yourself with things that bring out the best in you.
  11. Practice patience – this is another practice I am working on and I admit I am not very good at but it is something I practice daily.  Patience is a skill that we are not born with, it needs to be developed.  For those of us fire signs 🙂  we tend to have less patience and more energy than most people.  There are those with a more laid back approach to life whereas patience comes a little easier than those of us who take a more aggressive approach to life.  However, patience can be taught, learned and implemented.  It is critical to our success to have patience and trust that the Universe knows exactly what we need and when we need it.
  12. Letting go of the past – I have said it before and I will say it again, the past does not define us and it has no place in our present and our future.  If you have learned your lessons and are on the right path you will no longer need to revisit the past, it has nothing to offer you.  You can remember good moments, but don’t focus on them so much that you are not mindful of the present and especially the now, because this moment really is all any of us have.  So “be here now” should be your mantra…if you find your mind wandering to a memory of the past…honor it and say to yourself “be here now” and move on and focus on that moment, as best you can.  Letting go of the past and being mindful is hard and takes work but your brain can be re-trained to not wander off to the past and get stuck there.  Remember…be here now.
  13. Love yourself – madly and unconditionally.  This is a hard concept for some, I know it was for me.  I didn’t understand it until I started a self-love/self-care ritual and I learned how magical it is to put yourself first and to fall madly in love with yourself.  I have written several articles which have been published in Elephant Journal Magazine (love this magazine) about self-love and taking care of yourself and how to ease anxiety.  Read them at your leisure 🙂

https://www.elephantjournal.com/now/5-simple-grounding-exercises-to-ease-anxiety-the-stress-of-daily-life/ and

https://www.elephantjournal.com/now/how-to-practice-self-love-daily/

I pray a number of these exercises resonate with you.  You don’t need to identify with all of them, but you should find the ones that do resonate with you and put them into practice.

Just do the best you can to be your best self every day and you will start seeing changes and start feeling better about yourself and the choices you are making.

If you would like to work together to focus on these, please contact us.

Namaste

The tapestry of life

Life is this intricate tapestry filled with many different patterns that ultimately take their own unique twists and turns to create the design, as you follow the tapestries threads from the back they look jumbled..tied together and knotted with no real purpose.  However, when you turn the tapestry over, you see exactly what each thread was meant for, the tapestry is telling a story through its design.

Just like a tapestry, life has its unique thread pattern (the Journey) and we aren’t always sure why our Journey takes those crazy and unexpected turns nor are we always prepared for them but somehow we end up adjusting to them as we navigated through life.   Some of these experiences are good, some bad, some straight up hellish, most are eventful and useful, and a majority are not worthy of noting.  Rest assured, there is always a reason for them.  This is the beauty of our Journey, the tapestry of life.

My life has not been a fairy tale story by any means, it has been crazy in more ways than I can ever share.  I can honestly say there were times when I questioned my sanity as well as my decision making and I often wonder how I survived a lot of my experiences.  There are moments where I look back and think, wow, I could have died or why I wasn’t scared?  Hence my deep dive into Spirituality and Buddhism.  I truly believe I belong here and am slowly learning my purpose.

In any event, I was fearless and restless..desperately wanting to experience life (and fear).  I would hop on a train and travel 28 hours away knowing no one was there to get me when I got off the train and having no real plan once the train stopped.  When I met my first husband, I knew him three weeks and moved to Florida with him, without a second thought.  We lived in an all male dorm (he snuck me in), I shared a bathroom with 20+ men from all over the world (so gross) and barely knew my boyfriend.  However as I look back and think…what was I thinking, my next thought is….I am so grateful for that amazing experience.  I have many stories like this…being fearless and restless can put you in some unique situations.

Today, I am 45 and am fearful.  I know too much now.  I respect my life in a much different way than I did before.  Maybe maturity changes us because but I am much more thoughtful when making life choices as I understand that I have much to lose by making bad decisions.  I understand the concept of consequences.

It is now that I look back and think without these stories….what do we have?  Without the crazy “I survived ______” stories or the dreadful dating stories, and the stories of the tough years and financial comebacks, what do we tell when we get older?  However, I have now entered the second half of my life and although I want to create more good stories, I want them to be healthier ones.

I always say…when I am sitting in the nursing home reciting tales of my crazy life I will have some pretty incredible stories to tell.  Stories of love and loss, recklessness, bad choices, great choices, good and bad moments, the people the experiences, even the smells and the sounds….this is really all we have, isn’t it?

So when you go on that bad date or you experience a crazy situation or hurdle through a tough time or significant loss know that this is all part of your story!  Not only are you supposed to learn a lesson from it…you have a very cool story to tell.  Stories of recovery, triumph, loss, happiness, sadness, grief and of course funny and happy stories.

Never settle for mediocre, never take the easy road, do something that makes you feel alive and always tell your story with passion.

Namaste

The real benefits of working with a Life Coach

In my previous blog Why a Life Coach? I provide a simple explanation to the question, why would I need a life coach?

To take this one step further I wanted to share with you the benefits of working with a Life Coach and encourage you to make the choice to work with one, no matter where you are on your Journey.

Life Coaching is an ongoing relationship that can help you to produce positive results in your life, whether the focus is your career, personal or family decisions/issues or both a Life Coaching program can provide you with support and guidance through all of life’s challenges no matter how big or small.

As I mentioned in my previous post Life Coaching is neither counseling or therapy.  I describe Life Coaching as personal and professional guidance to help people move forward and set personal and professional goals that will give them the life they really want but aren’t able to achieve on their own.

As your personal Coach I will show you techniques (tools in the tool box) and simple life strategies to help you as you embark on your Journey to whatever you are looking to achieve.  Whether its healing from trauma, building strength and life skills, choosing a new career path, wanting to start a family, or navigating through the issues of your current life situation, a Life Coach is there for you every step of the way, empowering you to be your best and highest Self.

Think of your Coach as a friend who you spill your guts to, without receiving judgement and unwanted (bad) advice and with a bit more expertise and skill in helping you achieve your goals, whatever those may be.

There are many benefits to hiring a skilled and committed Life Coach:

Clarity (goal setting)

Helping you determine what you want from life (and if you are capable of it) is the first step in this process.

The initial on-boarding process will help me get to know you better which will help us get clear on what you would like to achieve from our coaching sessions.

We will have a series of goal setting sessions which will determine the direction you would like to head in and the speed in which we need to get you there 🙂

Commitment

The most important part of the entire process is your commitment to it.  After goal setting we will put together a step by step plan towards the goals we set which will ultimately get you to your final destination.  How exciting!

However, the only way we will be successful is if you fully commit to the process and plan that we develop.  Without commitment, we have nothing but empty promises and dreams.

Relish in the Opportunity to Focus Solely on Yourself

Life coaching is an incredible opportunity for self-love and self-care which gives us the confidence to go after our dreams.  Life Coaching gives you the permission to think about you and only you , what you want from life and how you are going to get there. This can be a life changing experience, if you allow it to be.

Personal & Professional Development

Life coaching is very challenging and hard work, but it is also rewarding and a lot of fun. Not only will we be building a solid and trusting relationship, but you will be looking at yourself with fresh eyes and pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone which can be very empowering. Life coaching will enhance your personal & professional development and will empower you to push yourself to the next level.  Never settling.

If you are ready to take the next step with coaching, please Contact Us today to set up a free consultation.

In my opinion, everyone should have a Life Coach by their side.  I do 🙂

Discovery through journaling…

Journaling has been an incredible healing and development tool in my life and also for those who have mentored me.  Therapists, coaches and teachers all recommend journaling as a tool for healing from traumatic events as well as for personal development, goal setting, learning and discovering what is holding you back etc.  I fully encourage this practice with friends, family, strangers on planes, and of course with my coaching clients.  If you are seeing a therapist, or a life coach or working with a counselor one of the first things they will recommend you do when you are struggling with life is….buy yourself a journal.  However, you have to be ready to get deep.

When I was in the midst of my “trauma” and trying to bounce back from a horrible life event (the loss of my husband to mental illness, addiction and our ultimate divorce), what helped me take the first steps towards healing was when I started journaling.  There was a point where I did not go anywhere without my journal, seriously, it was like my security blanket.  Through this practice I wrote what I call my “42” list….which literally is the 42 things about my now ex-husband that I dislike. In fact what I learned through journaling is that there wasn’t much I liked about him at all.  It was also through journaling I discovered the level of emotional abuse I had experienced and how lonely and  miserable I was in that marriage despite putting on a completely different front to those around me.  Remember, perception is reality, to a point.

Through journaling I discovered how amazing and free it felt to be able to openly express my thoughts without shame and work through them in my own private world and in my own time.  I also learned how critical those thoughts are when you start the healing process in therapy.  Journaling can take therapy to a whole new level and accelerate the healing process.

Amazing how the thoughts that end up on paper were sitting in your head taking up so much head space.  What a tremendous amount of pressure that is on your mind to hold all that information in there and carry it around, in some cases, forever.  No wonder people have so much anxiety….seeing as though humans are believed to have over 50,000 – 70,000 thoughts a day…how exhausting!

So this article is for those of you who need inspiration to start journaling, today.

Below are some starter journaling topics to get you thinking and writing….which ultimately leads to so much more (see How to start Journaling – Keystone Habit)


  1. Who are you, really?
  2. What person do you put out into the world?
  3. What are you passionate about?
  4. What are the achievements you are most proud of?
  5. What are you most grateful for in life?
  6. What are the most important things to you in life?
  7. How would you describe yourself?
  8. What are your values?
  9. Do you love yourself?
  10. … Why or Why not?
  11. How can you love yourself more today?
  12.  What does it mean to be your highest self?
  13. Look at your life now. Are you living the life of your dreams?
  14. If you have one year left to live what would you do first?
  15. What would you do today if there is no more tomorrow?
  16. What are the biggest things you’ve learned in life to date?
  17. What advice would you give to your younger self?
  18. Who inspires you?
  19. Is there something you’re still holding on to?
  20. What do you need to let go of?
  21. What is taking up too much headspace?
  22. What are your biggest goals and dreams?
  23. What would you do if you cannot fail; if there are no limitations in money, resources, time or networks?
  24. What do you want to achieve 1 year from now?
  25. What limiting beliefs are you holding on to?
  26. What bad habits do you want to break?
  27. Are you living your life to the fullest right now?
  28. What drives you?
  29. How can you change someone’s life for the better today?
  30. Who have been the most influential people in your life?
  31. Are these people enabling you or holding you back?
  32. What is your ideal life partner like?
  33. Are you afraid of of letting others get close to you?
  34. What is one thing you’re going to do differently after reading this article?

Improve your life with these simple Keystone Habits

What are Keystone Habits?

Simply put, they are small changes or habits that people introduce into their daily routines that unintentionally carry over into other aspects of their lives.  (Think wellness.)  They spark a chain reaction of other goods habits and can rapidly alter every aspect your life, in a positive way.

Keystone Habits work because they focus on making a dynamic change in your life by producing a trickle-down effect.  Soon after implementing a habit you will notice more opportunities for self-improvement from the Keystone Habits that you’re forming.

Success with a Keystone Habit happens when you take that first step.

Right now, make a list of all the habits you’d like to develop.  Pay close attention to the ones that can have a ripple-effect in your life. Then focus on these new habits over the next 30 days. You’d be surprised at how this small change can generate many positive outcomes.

Example: you start an exercise plan and after about a week you start feeling amazing, so you start to eat better with less processed foods and drinking more water, which then leads to a better nights sleep, which ultimately leads to a better more positive outlook and more energy, less anxiety, depression, exhaustion, etc.  Make sense?  The key here is to keep going, don’t stop because this is your routine.

As always I suggest starting small (stepping stones) because every thing you do that becomes a habit takes repetition and consistency.  If you start too many rituals or habits at once you will lose focus and burn out.

If you are a morning person, I suggest you start with creating a morning ritual for yourself and in turn if you are an evening person, you can do the same, which I call a wind-down routine.

You can gain ideas from my blogs or simply design your own (google can help you).  If you want a more individualized plan, I can hep you.


Keystone Habits can include:

  1. Family dinner with no electronics – have each member of your family report a WIN for the day sharing something positive that happened to them.
  2. Make your bed every morning
  3. Exercise regularly – yoga, walking, hiking, join a gym
  4. Eat healthier and often – fresh foods, greens
  5. Create daily routines – wake with the sunrise, morning smoothie, yoga, no electronics first thing, walk the dog, read the paper
  6. Add meditation to your morning/evening routine
  7. Goal setting – weekly/monthly/daily
  8. Journal your thoughts, goals and gratitude
  9. Early to bed/early to rise – change your bedtime routine to include meditation, a hot bath and a good book
  10. Read, everything and anything
  11. Set financial goals/budget

Start today and start small.  No excuses.

Until soon!

Namaste’