self compassion

Five 5-minute Self Care Practices

pregnancy (1).png

Self care is all the rage and for good reason.


We are craving more time spend in “being” mode and less time spent “doing.”


Things like burnout (which is now an official condition), adrenal fatigue, nervous breakdown, anxiety, depression, and more stress related issues, have been on the dramatic increase for years now. We know that stress contributes to pretty much EVERY SINGLE chronic issue out there. I don’t think there is any real argument for the idea that our the health of our physical body is not connected to our mental and emotional health.


We all know it’s true.


But what can you do? Our lives are busy, demanding and seem to go going so fast it can feel like “if only I could just catch up, then I could focus on managing my stress better.”


Listen! this is the truth. There is ALWAYS the same amount of time. It’s not something you will EVER have more of. You will always have the same amount of hours in the day, and what you decide is important and deserves the precious minutes or hours of your days is what you spend those minutes doing.


So if you feel overly stressed, busy and swamped, take a look at where you’re spending your time because that is what you value.


Are you ready to make a change? Here are five 5 minute self care practices to take the power back today.


  1. Walk out the door, step outside and take 5 deep breaths.

  2. Apply 2 drops Breathe essential oil to your chest, rub your palms together and cup around your nose and mouth and inhale deeply and close your eyes.

  3. Find a 5 minute mediation on insight timer that you like. Listen to it anytime you need 5 minutes of self care.

  4. Go to the bathroom and wash your face. (I LOVE this luxurious, non toxic and affordable face wash).

  5. Get on all fours and do cat cow pose and pigeon pose (2 minutes doing cat-cow pose and 1 minute on each side in pigeon pose).


That’s it. You’re on your way to reclaiming your power and taking better care of yourself.


You Are the Master of Your Mind

Untitled design (2).png
“The mind was made to bless.” - A Course in Miracles.



I got a message from an audience member of mine talking about her struggle with disordered eating.

She asked me why her mind was so irrational. Why when she knew she should stop restricting, she just couldn’t get the self-negating thoughts about her looks & how much/what she was eating, to go away.

She asked, "How come my mind is so irrational? When will these thoughts stop?"

The not so sexy answer is.. the thoughts won’t stop, but you are SO much more than your thoughts. And as you put your thoughts/feelings back in their place (in the backseat, not the driver’s seat)...they start to matter less & less.

The goal can never be to get the thoughts to go away or stop, the goal always have to be disengaging from the thoughts & identifying with the part of you that is soo much more. That space in your heart that is full of mystery & expansion & knowing.

Your mind/thoughts/feelings can be your servants. Not your master. Identifying with & remembering the master in you is the work.. as you do that the thoughts relax & go where they should, toward blessing the world around you.

Our minds were not made to be constantly coming up with the worst case scenario. But unfortunately most of us have put them in charge of our lives & that is WAY out of our mind’s job description, so that’s how it copes.

The worry & the fear. The mental anguish. The irrational thoughts. Guard constantly up. Always looking for the next blow.

Let it go. 
Let the part of you that knows come forward & lead. Those pesky little thoughts will go from your worst enemy to your best friend when released from their unwarranted responsibility of keeping you safe.

As we decide to stop identifying with our mind/thoughts/feelings we discover the master quietly waiting in the background, in the stillness of our own hearts.

Let go.
Get quiet.
Spend time with yourself.
I’m with you.

Shame is Not a Motivational Speaker

blog.png

t’s kinda crazy how we think using shame is going to motivate us into “staying in line.”

When you want someone else to do something for you.. do you “shame” them?

I hope not. When I’m asking a favor of someone or I want to motivate someone to do something I generally find something to compliment about them (authentically of course) or assure them how powerful/strong/smart/resilient they are.

It works so much better to treat people with kindness. 

So.. if we want ourselves to make a change, why don’t we “butter” ourselves up a bit?

Why don’t we assure ourselves how loved, loving and lovable we are?

Shame makes us shrink. It makes us scared, fearful, and downtrodden.

Love makes us blossom & expand.

When we speak #onlylove to ourselves we start to see the incredible amount of potential we have to create the changes we want to see in our lives and the world.

Shame is not a motivational speaker and you can never get more love through fear, threats, or misery.

Only Love creates more love.

So give up self-shaming right here and right now. I'm with you. 

Are you ready for a new way to deal with compulsive unhealthy eating? Check out the free training going on right now to discover my 3 step process for stopping unhealthy eating patterns through self-love, not self-shame. --> https://livetrainingnow.com/clara-wisner/free-training

The Myth of "Doing It All"

superwoman.png

Sometimes we feel like we should be able to do it all.

We have this sense that “everyone else” is doing more than we are;. That we’ll somehow “fall behind” if we don’t go a thousand miles a minute.

Better “keep up”!

We have this idea that we should be able to eat “clean” all the time, workout (hard) every day, take care of our families, be chronically sleep deprived and still function well, be successful, make lots of money, have lots of things, have awesome relationships with our parents & have close knit circle of friends... the list goes on.

No wonder we all feel so f*cking tired.

Of course we can’t do all that.

News flash! We can have EVERYTHING our hearts desire, but we’ve better take care of ourselves during the process of getting it, or else what’s the point?

The world needs the best version of you, you can be. The world needs your rested, cared for, & FULL self.

Self-care is not selfish. It’s one of the best things you can do for other people. Letting yourself rest, have downtime, and eat as much as you want, is a gift to yourself and the people around you most. 

When we don't allow yourself to dream, value your inner guidance system, pay attention to what your body is calling for, our relationships suffer. There is no doubt. Our relationships thrive when we are thriving. 

I’m so over women feeling like they have to wear all the hats. Feeling like their dreams require them to sacrifice. Feeling that they need to do all the things and look good doing it.

We don’t.

There will always be phases of intensity when we talk about building dreams, but that doesn’t mean you don’t deserve to let yourself ENJOY every moment of it.

So go ahead.
Give into the pleasure of the moment.
Relish an extra hour in bed; I promise the world won’t collapse and you won’t get fired.
Eat another piece of pizza.

One thing I just did: mark a day off on your calendar as “a personal day” and do absolutely nothing else but recuperate & lounge.

What are you going to do to take care of yourself today?

Non-Toxic Living

sparklingwaterblog.png

If you saw my recent posts on social media you know I’ve deemed the month of May “non-toxic living” month. On instagram (@revolutionarylifestyle) and in my free facebook group (Self Love Community) I’ve been posting daily videos on how to detox your life and why you’d want to. All these tips are real life, practical things that I actually do. I’m also doing a pretty kick ass giveaway (free stuff!). Get all the details and follow along via facebook or instagram

 

Today on the blog I want to talk about non-toxic living and self love. We tend to separate the physical from the mental/emotional and separate the mental/emotional from the spiritual, but if you read my stuff, you know it’s kind of my thing to address all four of these aspects at the same time. I truly believe we can’t really talk about physical health without addressing mental and emotional health, and we can’t talk about mental and emotional health without talking about spiritual health. 

So what would using non toxic cleaning products have to do with our spiritual health, you wonder? 

Well… everything. 

 

We are incredibly intricate and unfathomably complicated beings. The way our cells function is affected by the vibrational environment our bodies are currently in. As I wrote about last week, we are not victims of our energetic environment, but we can take responsibility for giving our cells the easiest time of it. We also must understand that we are inextricably linked to the Earth and when we hurt or endanger the Earth we also hurt and endanger ourselves. 

When we shift into the paradigm of self-love we start to care deeply about what we put inside our bodies, what we put on the outside of our bodies, what we surround ourselves with, and the health of our precious Earth. The difference between selfishness and self-love is vast, and one of the most notable differences, is the fact that self-love has no limits and expands to include the entire Earth, whereas selfishness and materialism is limited and tends to hurt the Earth.  And this is how living a non toxic lifestyle, taking our own health into our hands, respecting the Earth, and self-love all tie together. 

 

There are variations when it comes to toxicity, as with all things. For example, red dye #40 is a known carcinogen and petroleum based substance, but 15 million pounds of it are used each year in our food. This is something we know for sure we should all be avoiding. But then there are things like artificial flavorings that can be perfectly harmless or toxic depending on what they are made from. Europe has banned 1,300 cosmetic chemicals and the US has banned 11. So there’s all sorts of opinions. There are variations in toxicity and we all have the responsibility to take on this process of learning about toxins and decide what we, at our particular phase of life and capacity, can prioritize. Choose your battles wisely. 

 

But.. a quote that I come back to again and again is, “How we do one thing is how we do all things.” 

I know that this quote can sound unfair, or unrealistic, but it can also be a relieving and simplifying idea to build your life around. 

When I allow my food to be toxic, my thoughts will become toxic, my emotions and my spiritual connection will be blocked. So why don’t I choose to leave out toxicity and focus on natural, whole, from the Earth, for the Earth, food (aka organic). Why don’t I decide to not support companies that make toxic cosmetic products and harm my mother Earth and create my own facial oils from certified pure therapeutic grade oils or buy products from companies that have similar values as me? Why don’t I buy the biodegradable, fragrance-free laundry and dishwashing soap so that there isn’t a disconnect between the way I treat my body and the way I treat the Earth? 

These are really small, little shifts, and in the grand scheme of things they may not make all that much of a difference when we talk about global impact. But how you do one thing is how you do all things, and when you treat your body well, you start to see your mental capacity for goodness expand. When your mental capacity for goodness expands, your emotions lighten up, and your purpose becomes more and more clear. 

So let’s all get on board with this non-toxic living month and start to detoxify our bodies, our minds, our feelings, and our spiritual connection. 

If you’re with me, comment below, join the facebook group, or follow along on instagram. Can’t wait to hear from you. 

I Don't Play That Game

selfdoubtblog.png

This week I’ve had a lot of self doubt appear.

If you’re an entrepreneur you probably know this feeling well. That little voice that says, “what if you’re crazy?” “what if you don’t have what it takes to do what you’re doing?” “You’re not as good as everyone else,” and on and on. 

If you’re not an entrepreneur I’m willing to bet a million bucks you’ve experienced self-doubt in some other form. Self-doubt always rears it’s ugly head when we’re trying to change something or do something out of the ordinary. Maybe you’ve questioned whether or not you’re ever going to find a partner after a breakup or the 100th bad date. “You’re going to end up alone.” Maybe you’ve heard the voice when you wanted to reach a certain health or lifestyle goal. “You’re not thin and bendy enough to do yoga!” 

I think you get the point. It’s ain’t pretty. 

So.. that’s what’s been happening to me this week and I want to share a new practice that has helped me to disengage from the self doubt, make myself feel better, and move forward.

This practice is very simple. Here it is, when you hear that voice of self-doubt, state to yourself, “No, I don’t play that game.” 

selfdoubtmeme.jpg

When the voice says, “Your thighs are so big you’re never going to be taken seriously as a health and wellness coach.” You say right back, “No, I don’t play that game.” I don’t play the game where the way my body looks gets to make me feel bad or unworthy of what I want. I play the game where my body is precious, sacred, and beautiful, and also where I am SO much more than my body.

When the voice says, “You’re crazy to think that you could make $12,000 a month passively. Maybe some people can do it, but YOU never could.” I say right back, “I don’t play that game.” I play the game where the world is abundant, amazing, and earning a beautiful living is possible, easy, and simple.

When the voice says, “This is too hard. You better quit.” You say, “Nope. I don’t play that game.” I play the game that allows what is to be the way it is. I don’t resist any experience that is placed in front of me because I know life is always happening for me, not to me. I always can find a thought that feels good. I’m always preparing myself to be ready for the best possible thing to happen to me.

I play the games that I want to play. Not the ones that society sometimes seems to have forced upon me. 

When we disengage from the “game”, we simply refuse to engage with the thought patterns that hold us back from whatever we want to do; and we’ll see we never had to play those games in the first place. 

This doesn’t mean that the voice or the fears completely go away forever. It just means they become background noise instead of the main chorus. And with practice you’ll be able to unhook from ‘the games’ faster and with more ease.

Freedom is yours. It’s a choice in each moment. Don’t forget that. Using this mantra allows us to remember we can choose to disengage and get on with our awesomeness. 

 

 

Surrender and Ease: the Key to True Success

surrenderblog.png

Success and fulfillment are different, but they both require surrender. 

When we think of success we normally think of material things; a nice car, a big house, money, vacations, etc. But, when we think about fulfillment we normally think of something deeper. A job well done. A purpose met. A connection. Fulfillment is spiritual, where as success is more material. 

When we talk about either success or fulfillment we tend to refer to our profession or career. A career can definitely create success, but it also can bring a lot of fulfillment or un-fulfillment.

A lot of times when we talk about the success of our business ventures or careers, our health and wellness, or the fulfillment of our life's purpose we talk about all the “hard work” involved; all the struggle and pain we've had to endure or the time we had to “put in” to be where we are now. 

But right here; right now, I’m going to totally and completely disagree with this notion of necessary struggle; because in my life; I’ve always had the biggest breakthroughs, the most success and fulfillment when I let go; when I surrender. When I let things align. When I stop “trying” so damn hard all the time.

On some level we all tend to believe we don’t deserve good things to happen to us; that we need to or should be required to work super hard for all we desire.

But the truth is; the moment we focus on aligning with what feels good and let the rest go; is when true fulfillment happens.

THAT is when life gets good. 

You are good enough to have all you want.

You are deserving of all your desires.

You have permission to want what you want.

But don’t let the fact that you might not have it all right now make you play the victim.

The truth is you already have it all anyway. The truth is your true success and all the fulfillment you're looking for is already in your own heart. You've just got to re-member it. 

So I’m going to go totally against the grain and say that you will find true success and fulfillment when you let things be EASY.

When you find pleasure and joy in the work; not by banging your head against a wall and hustling until you squeeze the life out of your adrenals.

Life is meant to be fun, wild, and enjoyable.

Your work is your purpose; and that comes easily.

Stop the resistance. Make the choice. Stretch your heart open to fit whatever is happening inside of it.

Your only job is to breathe into whatever is happening right now; and appreciate it.

I’m with you.

Letting Go of the Past and the Future to Enjoy the Present

Presence.png

"Start anew, again & again. Every moment of our lives we can start anew." - Pema

You don’t have to believe the story of yesterday.

The stories of our past have a certain momentum that can be challenging to bring to a halt. 

But... 

All it takes is awareness. 

A simple momentary choice to see right now differently. 

To know that every moment is chance to start again. 

Let’s choose a new story, one that we’re excited about & in love with, right now in the present moment. 

My work this week (or let’s be honest; the work of my life) has been in the vein of learning how to not know where the path leads exactly, but walk down it anyway. And to not make assumptions about that path because of past experiences. 

To not be super consumed in the place I’m going before I get there. Or the place I was just standing.

To stay open along the way and keep moving forward. 

To meet the people and experiences that cross my path with love and curiosity; not view them as obstacles in the way of where I’m going or plaster them with expectations. 

The way I’ve learned to ‘be’ in the world is to be kind of like a bulldozer. 

I see where I’m going and I just charge ahead. 

Single minded. 

I won't say it hasn't worked for me in some respects.  

I bless the lessons, gifts, and massive amount of drive it has given me. 

But I’m ready for a softer existence. 

I’m craving more flow. 

A way of being that is more like a river. 

No hurry. 

No rush. 

No urgency. 

Swift in parts. 

Slow and heavy in others. 

I always know where I’m going. 

I’ll get there as sure as the river leads to the ocean. 

Releasing control and trusting the process so that I can enjoy what happens along the way. 

Sometimes we need more drive. 

Sometimes we need more flow. 

Sometimes we need to remember that we are here to enjoy life. To thank the every day, ordinary moments. 

Right now I’m choosing the beauty of letting go, and allowing each moment to start afresh. 

What about you?

5 Self-Care Practices That Are Working For Me Right Now

blog5things.png

I've been feeling pretty dang good, so good that I thought I would share my nonnegotiable self-care practices that are working for me right now, because I feel like I'm on to something... ; ) 


1. Drinking warm lemon water with a pinch of sea salt right when I wake up


This is an oldie, but a goodie.

It is my go-to advice. If you're a client of mine, I know you've heard this. If you're a friend of mine, I know you've heard this. If you're anyone that has ever stood near me, you've probably hear this... 

Here's why... 
There are four pillars of physical health in my mind: 

  1. Hydration 
  2. Sleep 
  3. nutritious food 
  4. Stress management 

We live in the real world though and it’s not very likely that you’re going to be able to do all of these perfectly all of them time. 

But when we have these four pillars in mind we can make sure we focus on what we can, when one isn't doable. 

This means, that when I know I’m going to be extra stressed or not going to be able to get as much sleep as I know would be best for me, I’ll up the hydration and I’ll up the nutritious food. Or when I’m traveling and I know I won’t be able to eat as well as normal, I’ll make sure I’m doing my stress management and drinking lots of water. 


Starting your day off with a large glass of water is one way to make sure you’re always getting a head start on the hydration. If you do the added lemon (I do the juice from half a lemon) then it helps with detox as well as kick starts your digestion. If you do the warm water, it just makes it a little easier for your body to absorb. Drink the water before coffee and you’re golden. 


2. Writing down 3 things I’m grateful for every day


Gratitude is literally the antidote to almost everything. 

If we can bring ourselves back to gratitude for what we have, we keep our vibe high and our minds focused on all the good things in our lives. If you read my stuff, you know that I’m all for accepting and loving those “negative” emotions, but dwelling on the bad in your life never made anyone feel good. 

Gratitude sets you free. 

Makes you feel good. 

Even in the most trying situations. 


I have a special little notebook I carry around with me and every morning I start my day by writing down 3 things I’m grateful for. 

Sometimes it’s as simple as, “I am grateful for my pillow,” and other days it’s bigger, “I’m grateful for my purpose.” 

The other awesome side effect of actually writing them down and making a habit of writing them down, is that throughout your day you’re looking for things to be grateful for and this keeps your thoughts and mind expecting the best. 
You’re asking yourself throughout the day, “What can I be grateful for today?”

Magic. 



3. Dancing every evening. (hey! Dancing DEFINITELY counts as self-care) 


This is something that is relatively new and seems kind of comical to actually have on my “to do” list. But here’s why I made it a nonnegotiable. 

First off, we all need more fun and play in our lives and dancing is freaking fun for me. It ALWAYS cheers me up. 

The second reason for my new dancing obsession is that I found I was getting really stuck in my head all day. All our professional work these days is very mental, cerebral, and that can make us disregard our bodies which leads to feelings of distraction, spacey-ness, feelings of disconnection and a decrease in our ability to be aroused and have sexual desire.


Dancing gives me that playful feeling and allows me to connect back into my body, allowing me to be more sexual, sensual and experience more pleasure. All good things! 



4. Check-Ins on the New Moon and on the Full Moon


I love the idea of cycles. 

We are cyclical beings. Especially as women. 

We need to remember that there is a time for planning; a time for resting and recuperating; and a time for doing.

 Our society tends to be very productivity and “doing” oriented and it’s not serving us well. People are stressed out, experiencing high levels of depression and anxiety, dis-ease. 

Connecting into our cyclical nature allows us to connect back in to nature, cycles, and gives us permission and regular intervals to reevaluate and take inventory and tap into what we need. 

The new moon ritual or check in is based around planting new seeds and intentions for the moon cycle to come. It’s a time for setting goals, getting clear about what I want, and how I am going to get it. 

The full moon ritual or check in is based around evaluation and shedding what doesn’t serve. It’s a time to be honest with ourselves about what is and isn’t working and create the space to allow what is not working to fall away and make space for something new. 

These new moon and full moon “rituals” typically are just an hour or so in the evening of the day of new moon and the day of the full moon.

It goes like this: My husband and I gather, put on some nice relaxing music, light a candle and a bundle of sage, and go through our check-in worksheets (linked below). 

We simply discuss and share what we wrote. Nothing more than that. 

This has also had a great unexpected side effect of providing time for my husband and I to connect on the state of our relationship and communicate on deeper levels than we’re normally prompted to do in every day life.

Life can get so “go, go, go” that a month can easily go by without us checking in with our families and our loved ones. These rituals have allowed us to carve out that time to check in with ourselves and each other. Priceless. 

Download my New Moon and Full Moon Ritual worksheets here


5. Using Essential Oils throughout the day


So essential oils are becoming a deep, deep love of mine, and you'll definitely be hearing a lot more about them. 

They have the ability to change your mood in an instant. They have the ability to change the entire feel of a room. 


I’ve started using them throughout my day in so many ways and they’ve literally changed so much about how I experience frustration, exhaustion, food cravings, mediation, sickness.. the list goes on. 

To keep it as brief as possible, here’s my typical daily essential oils routine: 

  • wake up, put water in the diffuser with wild orange and peppermint (hello bright shiny morning vibes!) 
  • during my morning meditation practice I’ll use rose, jasmine, or frankincense to ground me and clear my chakras. 
  • Apply the hormone balancing Clary Calm blend to my lower abdomen to keep hormones balanced and healthy throughout stressful days. 
  • Use passion blend throughout the workday when I’m feeling uninspired or sluggish. 
  • Diffuse balance, serenity, citrus bliss, elevation blend (all sorts! I can’t really say exactly what I use) throughout the day in my office to keep me feeling like I’m in a spa… ; ) 
  • Use on guard when I’m sick, imortelle on my face for anti-aging benefits, rosemary in my shampoo, deep blue with sore muscles, breathe when I do yoga.. Ok this is just crazy, but you get the point. It’s ALL THE TIME.
  • 30 min before bed I always start the bedroom diffuser with something relaxing like lavender and cedar wood or roman chamomile. 


**Interested in getting some medicinal grade essential oils? I am an essential oils educator and wellness advocate with doTERRA essential oils and would love to chat with you about how to use oils to address areas of your life where you need some self-care. Email me at revolutionaryhelpdesk@gmail.com to schedule a phone call. 

Ok, so those are 5 self-care practices that are working for me right now...

Now let me know, what's working for you? 

What I Know for Sure

Iknowforsure.png

1. I am Supported

I know that we live in a benevolent universe. I know that every single thing that happens to you, to me, to everyone is part of something that is supporting us through a journey of learning to love more deeply, more comprehensively, and more totally. 

I know shitty things happen. I know painful things happen. I know experiences and people can be unfair, overwhelming, and seemingly hopeless. But I also know that when we feel the burn of hurt, it’s the exact opportunity to give in, to crack open, to say, “I don’t know the answers,” and let ourselves be guided by this Universal support. It’s simple, but not always easy. 

2. Self-Love is the Always the Answer

Out of every single person in the world, I am the only one who knows what it feels like to be me.  I am the only person who hears how I hear, who sees how I see, who loves the way I love, who experiences sadness in my way, who understands joy the way I’m meant to. I am, was and will be, with myself. It’s the one thing I can always guarantee. If I don’t love me, I’m in a very difficult situation. 

When we put our happiness, worthiness, or valuation in someone or something else, we are saying something else matters more than our own sovereignty. When we say to ourselves consciously or unconsciously, “For me to be happy, I need him to love me,” or “I’ll really be myself when I lose these last 10 pounds,” we are literally saying someone or something else has control over how much we are worth, how much we deserve, and how much we have. 

It doesn’t matter how much love you get from other people. It doesn’t matter what your body looks like or how many pretty, awesome, expensive things you have. If you don’t love yourself, it’s all just a guise, a false front. Self-love, loving ourselves honestly and fully, is the key to having a fulfilling life. It’s the key to everything I care about and want to care about. 

3. I am Responsible for EVERYTHING that Happens to Me

(See last week’s blog post about the differences between responsibility, fault, and blame for more clarification.)

This is the most empowering statement I can think of. Living in this space is the space where miracles happen. It is where we take control of our lives, our fates, and our happiness. 

People always rally against this idea though.They want to say, “but what about when my husband cheated on me?” or “what about when my dad died in a car wreck?” Yes, these awful things happen, and they hurt and they are not your fault. But you do get to decide what you do with it. You do get to decide how you react. You do get to decide how you see what’s left after the bomb drops. 

4. Where There is Fear There is Power (or Real Vulnerability Makes Us Invulnerable)

This will be it’s own blog post someday I’m sure. But I know that true power lies in being exactly who you are. Being exactly who you are means no hiding, no pretending, and no covering up. The paradox is that only when we become completely vulnerable, do we become invulnerable because there is nothing else to figure out. Every place we feel fear it’s because there is a part of ourselves we haven’t totally integrated. As we become a fully integrated, self-realized human being, we realize we held the power all along. 

 

We are bigger, braver and kinder than we could ever imagine. Remember that. 

 

Only Love, 

 

Clara 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Healing Power of Anger

healingpowerofanger.png

As a lot of women and men out there this week I’m sure, I’ve been thinking a lot about the #metoo phenomenon. The sheer amount of social media posts from friends, family members, online influencers, etc who have posted this message of solidarity against the objectification of women, doesn’t exactly surprise me but it has definitely required me to sit with some unpleasant emotions of sadness, outrage, hopelessness and anger. 

When our world is swept up into a movement like this there are always so many voices, wise and unwise, true and untrue, so many subtleties that go unaddressed or are spoken about to the point nonsense. I would never want to assume I understand or know more than I do about the uniqueness of every woman’s deeply personal experience of degradation or injustice. 

But, there are some things I do know for sure: I know that I have personally, on many levels, been harassed, exploited, and used by men. I know that I feel and carry with me the unspeakable wounds inflicted on my precious body and my sisters’ bodies and minds every day consciously and unconsciously. I know that when we humans hurt each other we are not just hurting the other person, we are hurting ourselves. We cannot give without receiving, and we cannot hurt without being hurt. I know that women have been raped, abused and mistreated for lifetimes and that this weighs on each and every one of our souls. 

I also know that to truly heal we must brave the sea of despair. We must look at the Truth of the abuse square in the face, and step into the darkness beyond it. That is why, I know for sure that outrage is part of the healing process. I know that for us to truly heal, as a society and as individuals, we must allow the cleansing power of our anger to wash over us, and give us the inner light to navigate the unknown territory of forgiveness. 

Anger reminds us of the Truth of our worth. To recover from being violated, personally and collectively, we must use the alchemical fire of anger to transform the hurt and pain into power. We use anger to realize and take action towards reclaiming our power, without apology. It gives us the power to sail on that sea of hopeless and trust that there is another shore, a better shore. If you feel sad, shocked, abused, mistreated, properly channeled outrage is the power that moves you through. 

As Bethany Webster said so perfectly: “Do what so few dare to do: Give your anger a safe, empathic space to be fully, completely felt.  Harness it, listen to it. Anger has so many gifts. Not indiscriminate, projected anger, but the energy of outrage, felt and placed where it truly belongs. Collective female outrage is a nectar that this world needs.” 

So be brave. Feel the anger. This is what healing feels like. 

Advice for When the Darkness Creeps In

darkness.png

I've been feeling majorly down in the dumps. A bout of traveling sickness (the unglamorous side of traveling!!) and a realization that some things in my business are going to have to change, had me moping around and in a dark headspace.

So, as I've been known to do, I picked up a pen, closed my eyes, descended into the Sanctuary of my Heart and channeled my Higher Self for some advice. I'm sharing this because I thought it might reach someone else in a time of need.

This is what She ( I ) said:

Hey my Sister,

I know what it feels like when darkness creeps into your bones
I'm familiar with that heaviness
That lethargy
That weariness

When the fight seems too exhausting
Too big
Overwhelming
Too much still undone
Remember I've been there
I Still go there..

The darkness is in me too
The darkness is part of us
When we are Whole we don't get to leave parts of us behind

We say to the darkness, "come in, sit at the table."

I'm not here to sugar coat things
To tell you, "do this and you'll be happy forever!" 
I'm here to be a voice for Love. 
Real, unconditional, all-empowering: L O V E

And Love does not discriminate. 
It doesn't judge. 
You are just as worthy of Love when you are in the throughs of negativity as you are when you're positive
You are Loved when you are at worst & no less than when you are at your best.

So remember, when the darkness comes, we are in this together. You could never screw this up.

5 Ways to Love Yourself

howtoloveyourself.png

I believe that self-love is THE MOST IMPORTANT THING. Like in the world. Like always and forever.

Ok, strong statements, I know, but hear me out… 

Out of every single person in the world, I am the only one who knows what it feels like to be me.  I am the only person who hears how I hear, who sees how I see, who loves the way I love, who experiences sadness in my way, who understands joy the way I’m meant to. I am, was and will be, with myself. It’s the one thing I can guarantee. If I don’t love me, I’m in a very difficult situation. And all this goes for you. 

When we put our happiness, worthiness, valuation in someone or something else, we are saying something else matters more than our own sovereignty. When we say to ourselves consciously or unconsciously, “For me to be happy, I need him to love me,” or “I’ll really be myself when I lose these last 10 pounds,” we are literally saying someone or something else has control over how much we are worth, how much we deserve, and how much we have. 

It doesn’t matter how much love you get from other people. It doesn’t matter what your body looks like or how many pretty, awesome, expensive things you have. If you don’t love yourself, it’s all just a guise, a false front. The core of happiness isn’t there. 

I have the incredible privilege to talk about, practice, and explore self-love every day. It is my soul obsession. It’s my purpose. Not because I think I am doing the world a service (although, I certainly hope I am!) but because it’s what I want to do, and I love and trust myself fully so I follow the urge. Simple as that. 

I’m currently traveling around the world, exploring self-love practices and spiritual theories and slowly compiling it all into a book about self-love. I work with clients all over the world as a self-love guide, walking beside women, whispering to their hearts as I can, so that they can wake up to their own inner well-spring of love. 

Here’s the Truth that I know: If we don’t need external validation, we’re much more inclined to follow our hearts. And if we all followed that precious, holy space called our heart more often we would be kinder, more loving, and less afraid. 

Here are 5 ways to love yourself, today, right now, this week, whenever you’re ready to start. These are by no means the only ways. You get to decide the ways that work for you because you are a powerful and sovereign being with all the answers inside of you, but in case you need some help, a little information, may these 5 points be a guide. 

  1. Spend time with yourself, honestly, without distractions. This isn’t “treat yo’self” stuff like pedicures and massages (although those are definitely good forms of self-care and can be part of self-love). This could be meditation. This could just be sitting on your couch facing bravely whatever comes up when it’s quiet and you’re alone, and actually feeling it. You can’t fall in love with someone if you don’t spend time alone with them. Spend time alone with yourself. 
  2. Get really clear on what you want. Down to every last detail. You are worthy of whatever your heart desires. Spend the time to figure out what that is. You can do this as a grand whole, or you can do this for each little situation. What do you want when it comes to your love life? What do you want for dinner tonight? Get clear on all of it. You can’t get somewhere if you don’t know where you’re going, the more details, the better. 
  3. Stay in your body. Embodiment is powerful. Our bodies are precious, sacred, and holy. For us to be present we must be able to stand powerfully and confidently in our own bodies. I have so much more to say about this (it’s an entire section in my book, maybe more), but this is the basis: stay in your body. Feel it. Be it. Revere it for the awesome treasure it is. 
  4. Use your voice. This can mean different things for different people. It could be singing or chanting. It could be standing up for yourself in a situation where you’ve been walked all over or disregarded. It could be giving someone a compliment or telling them you love them. Use your voice. It’s powerful and needed.
  5. Trust your instincts. Stop second guessing yourself. Don’t ask why you want what you want. You can trust yourself. It’s OK if you mess up. It’s OK if you don’t get it right. You’ll still have you. At some point, you have to take the leap of faith and Trust that heart of yours. Break up with the guy. Quit the job. Go travel to that place. Take the course. Share your heart. Change up your diet. Stop talking to that lady who always makes you feel inadequate. Give in to the pull. Let things fall away. Start small if you need to, but practice makes perfect and to practice trusting your True self, you’ve got to start. 

I’ve created an online program, revolutionize your life: 21-weeks to self-love, that was birthed out of this beautiful obsession with self-love, my personal journey, and my walking alongside clients. This program puts all of this experience with self-love into a comprehensive and intentional process that allows you to enter the sanctuary of your own heart. A place you have within you, always. A place that never judges, never punishes, and is never not there. 

If you are feeling the resonance with this self-love activation and you know that you want to start making self-love a priority, I invite you to check out the program information and see where it takes you. 

I’m offering the readers of the piece a special code: SAVE500, which will save you $500 when entered in the coupon code space during the check out process (valid for one week).  

Only Love, 

Clara 

What to Do When You Feel Out of Control

explosion.png

I’ve been having one of those weeks where I’m feeling a little lost, a little out of control. I've been traveling for so long and now that I've finally got a significant amount of time in one place everything feels like it's going slow motion. Personally, there's been a slowing down. A refocusing. It's the feeling of a season change. Turning inward. It's melancholy, in a comforting way. 

In the greater world, there are so many things happening right now that feel out of control too. The flooding in Texas and the path of hurricane Irma. The earthquake centered in Mexico, of which the aftershocks woke me up in my bed in Guatemala last night (the date I’m writing this is 9/8/2017, just in case you're reading this later). The last two weeks I was visiting family in Montana and the wild fires left my clothes and hair smelling like a campfire for days. The smoke burning my lungs and darkening the sky.

To say all this in a way that lacks description but also encompasses the entirety I'm feeling is: It's a lot. A very easy time to fall into fear and depression. And when we feel like this, lost, overwhelmed and hopeless it can be really easy and comfortable to fall into the known mindsets of worry, scarcity, distrust, and lack. 

But, I made a decision a long time ago that I wanted to live a life from the other side of those constricting thought patterns.

I live a life that leaves room for the melancholy, hopelessness, and sadness but isn’t defined by them. I made a decision to be a person who Trusts. Even when it feels like I’m floating off into space without any anchor, I Trust that it’s what I need. To feel alone. To feel sad. All feelings are gifts, little guides, brining me home. 

Even when I feel like I’m spinning out of control, I am committed to releasing my grip even further, because who says spinning is bad anyway? Self-love is allowing the feelings, no judgment because we respect ourselves enough to know have feelings for a reason, to guide us towards what we need.  

I want to live in a world where qualities like trust, acceptance, joy, space, allowance, are the default. Where challenges are seen as learning experiences that sharpen our minds, strengthen our characters, and stretch our hearts. Where we see difficult emotions as a sign that we need to do the difficult work of slowing down, turning inward, and giving ourselves space. And how to do we make changes in the world? We “be the change we would like to see,” as Ghandi says.  

So in the midst of a challenge of feeling out of control, let’s not harden our shells, or tighten our grip, but let the change come. Let’s focus on what we CAN do, not what feels impossible. Let’s focus on what is being washed away and let go. Let’s realize that for all new seeds to germinate and bloom there must a period of sowing. 

So let the change come. 

Let the falling away happen. 

Hold the change that's happening like a delicate flower in the palm of your hand, with tenderness, with respect, with love, until it's ready to be released. 

You are always more than enough. I believe you. You can let whatever difficult change is happening to you right now, happen. You can let the world hold you. Soften into it. Blur around the edges. Be swept away. 

As we meet our challenges with love, allowance, and tenderness, we meet ourselves with the same qualities, and self-love changes our lives and we change the world. 

How to Use the Eclipse for Your Own Good

Snip20170818_14.png

Have you been feeling that eclipse energy? 

Maybe you’ve been feeling a little on edge? A little more emotional than normal?

A solar eclipse creates pressure. Necessary pressure, in our inner life as well as in outer society. A pressure that births new beginnings and change. This same pressure, pushes up old patterns, beliefs and sometimes, ugliness to the surface, to be healed and let go of. 

As Sonia and Sabrina Choquette say, ““A solar eclipse creates pressure to our inner and outer worlds. Scientifically, the solar eclipse creates a higher atmospheric pressure called the Atlas’s Effect. Pendulums behave differently as our air pressure is slightly elevated. Historically a solar eclipse has had a profound emotional and psychological effects on human beings. Astrologically speaking, a solar eclipse energy will trigger many of our subconscious fears as it awakens our souls' growth.” 

Yesterday (8/17/2017) I was feeling kind of off. The only way I can describe it was it felt like I was kind of humming inside my body. Nothing that would stop me from going about my daily routine, but a slight humming. Kind of how you feel after chanting, or a deep meditation or an awesome yoga class. 

I’ve had this feeling before. It’s a familiar kind of ‘off’, and pretty enjoyable really, but it is normally accompanied by something unpleasant or a period of forced introspection. I’ve come to view this humming feeling as an invitation to accept a “leveling up.” It’s the way my body lets me know, “OK. We’re going to rework some things, and it’s might have to get real.”I guess I think of it as my physical form is being invited into or to use a new frequency, a higher vibration. 

And today (8/18/2017)… I am sick. It's a shaky, achy, headache-y, kind of sickness. My whole body hurts and it is definitely making me stop my daily routine. I’m writing this in bed while lying down. It feels like being dizzy or carsick. Almost like this new frequency, I’m being invited into is giving me motion sickness. 

If this idea of “frequency” and “vibration” is new to you, I know this might sound kind of cray-cray. In the words of my husband, “Personally, I don’t connect with the idea that a solar eclipse has anything to do with someone feeling sick.” (do you see what he did there? He’s such a good communicator : ) ). 

That’s OK. I understand that sometimes these things are beyond the realm of understanding and/or belief for some people, but my point with this story is that we can use the extra pressure in our atmosphere and inner worlds for positive change if we chose to. Freedom is in the choice. This energy, pressure, event can give us a little extra push to make the choice to let go. To heal. To release. To change. 

Maybe you are super tuned into this high-pressure energetic time and you’ve got your sage bundles, crystals, journaled intentions, essential oils and meditation cushion all ready for the eclipse. Or maybe you have entirely different ways to celebrate it. Cool. It’s all good. 

Either way, right now, I invite you to get a little introspective about the last few weeks. Have you felt more intense than normal? Maybe sad, upset, angry, frustrated, sick? There have been some outrageous and ugly things happening in the world, but these horrendous acts have also been met with a huge upheaval of kindness, love, and life-affirming action. Have you been swept up in that? Do you feel the intensity? 

So what do we do with this intensity? This extra emotional charge? 

We hear the invitation to slow down. We start or restart our meditation/contemplative practice, or add a few more minutes on each day or second meditation. We hear the invitation to check in with our internal world and make sure that we’re on a path that brings us joy. We allow the feelings to come up without judgment so that they may be processed and let go. If we get sick we see the message in the sickness, “Slow down. Take care of yourself. Rest.” Maybe we go to a special yoga class. 

You may find that it’s more likely for you to have deep conversations with people during this pressed time. We can open ourselves up to totally new and previously unimaginable solutions to problems. We break down some of the self-imposed conditions and experience fuller and more complete joy. 

I invite you to use this extra energy in the cosmos and in you to “level up.” To experience greater and greater clarity. To allow the time and space that it takes to rearrange your inner world with the knowledge that when we’re open to healing our inner world, we heal our outer world as well. Send your roots down deep, so that you can rise up strong. It may be a bumpy ride. But, this is what healing looks like. 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Love Yourself When You Don't Deserve It

Snip20170715_24.png

This is something that I don't really want to share, but I am sharing it anyway because I think it's of utmost importance for me to be real. For me to be honest, even about things that make me look like I don't have it together (secret: I don't! Never have.)

I've also been thinking along the lines the Rumi quote, "Forget safety. Live where you fear to live. Destroy your reputation. Be notorious." And Danielle LaPorte's quote, "Risk being very, very misunderstood." 

I don't want for people to see my dark side. I don't want people to think I've done wrong. It's not safe. It's not reputable.

But... 

I think it's important that people see the way that life brings me to my knees (because we're probably on our knees together) as well as to see how (when we choose to see it that way) Life hands us opportunities over and over again to bring love where there was no love before, sometimes in the most painful ways. 

I'm hoping some will relate to this and find some comfort, and that's why it's worth being vulnerable, open and honest. 

As I wrote this it also felt so incredibly healing for me. Like a weight being lifted. So I also write and share this for me. Because I don't want to cover up. I don't want to lie. I want my inner world to line up with my outer world even if that means destroying my reputation a little bit. 

"For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn't understand growth, it could look like complete destruction." - Cynthia Occelli 

I messed up pretty bad recently. 

It hurt people. People I know and people I don't know. 

It made me look like a phony. It made me look like I don't stand strong in what I preach. 

It feels awful. 

There are parts of me that want to crawl into a hole. 

This isn't the first time something like this has happened in my life. I've lied. I've cheated. I've hurt people. 

Sometimes we do things that our higher selves would never, ever do.

Now, the question is always: why?

Why do we do things we know are wrong?

Why would we semi-knowingly do something we know has the potential to hurt a person/people?

In the case of my recent experience, I did it because I didn't take the time to stop and feel. Looking back on it, it was really an act of desperation. I got caught up in the deluded story of egoic ambition, 'lack' of time and just straight up carelessness. It felt wrong the whole time but I couldn't be bothered to notice that feeling. I had stuff that needed to get done! So I got it done. 

When we ignore our gut instincts, don't pay attention to the subtle clues, and fall into unconscious patterns we're bound to do things that don't align with our soul. 

I want to be clear about something: I am not a bad person. I am very, very committed to my work and my journey. I may have done many things in my life I am not proud of, but my heart is pure and it longs for belonging and love. I may be confused about how to get those things at times, and my ego may do things that seem obviously wrong to the rational observer, but I know it is all done with the intention of getting love and belonging. 

I believe the same is true for everyone on this planet.

As the Way of Mastery says: "Self-honesty is the greatest act of love." And I am only being honest with myself. 

I preach compassion and forgiveness but what happens when I'm the one who so desperately needs compassion and forgiveness? What about when I want so badly for the person I hurt to see my true heart and how sorry I am, but I hurt them so they're not interested? Guilt. Guilt happens. Overwhelming-gut-wrenching-heart-breaking guilt. 

Now, guilt can be constructive. It can give us a feeling in the moment that lets us know to never do that thing we just did again. When we've done wrong, we need to be aware of it. 

But, as Danielle LaPorte says, "If you can muster some tenderness for yourself when you think you’re at your worst—at precisely the time when you think you deserve criticism or punishment––then you’re on the way to stable self-esteem."

If you did something wrong, own it. Apologize. Do what you can to make amends. In this particular situation, I took complete responsibility. I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning doing what I could to fix it. I expressed deep regret. I felt that guilt in the moment. And, I can honestly say it's changed me. I feel grateful for and humbled by the experience.  

Feeling the constructive guilt in the moment teaches our psyche not to do that again. But, we can't follow the story of the guilt ('I'm a bad person', 'I don't deserve love', etc) just FEEL the guilt. Is it a tightness in my chest? A gut punch? Notice the feeling. Make note of it, allow it. 

If we lie, cheat, steal, break promises, commitments, act like an asshole, it's so easy for us to fall into the self-loathing hole or we could get super defensive because we want to make excuses to make it hurt less or we could try to numb ourselves to the pain of it all with various distractions: eating, drinking, obsessing about the situation and how it could have gone differently. But this does nothing for us and nothing for the person/people we may have hurt or affected with our bad behavior. It just breaks us down. 

I'm so tempted to berate myself, feel sorry for myself, be totally depressed in a marinade of shame, and, honestly, I've given in to this a bit. 

But.... I can feel the part of me knows that this lesson will serve me. This part of me prays my suffering will be of service to the world in some way. And this part is getting stronger and stronger with each screw-up. And that's where the gratitude for a painful situation comes from. From knowing that each time I mess up, I get to bring love to a place where there has not been love before, and therefore increase the love in my life. 

"Immediate compassion for your missteps gives you the strength to take the next best step." - Danielle LaPorte

This part of me knew that I shouldn't have lied about the thing I lied about, but it also, in the background, knew that although this lesson would be painful, it would clear space for something better to take root. As Glennon Doyle Melton says, "First the pain, then the rising." This thing had to play out so that I can be where I am now, writing this piece and pouring love into a part of me that wasn't loved before. 

This experience solidifies my commitment to only doing what feels right, even if what feels right doesn't make sense in the "real" world. This experience makes so clear the ridiculousness of egoic ambition and acting out of a need for external praise. 

Sometimes the gunk, the darkness, the kept-underneath-the-rug must come to the surface to be healed. And that can look awful, messy, and a whole lot like your fault. But, it must come into the Light for it be let go. 

Whatever I did or have done, it is forgivable, but I am the only one who has to do the forgiving, other peoples' forgiveness is their own journey, which can be the hardest part of all. 

So into the Light with it all. To get through this, I'll give myself heaping doses of tenderness when I can, and when I can't, I'll pray that my suffering is of service. (Danielle LaPorte again!) 

To anyone out there struggling to forgive themselves for something they did, I'm with you. But I want you to know, no matter what it is: You have a pure heart. You can get through this and learn the lesson and become stronger for it. You are loved. You are loving. You are lovable, forever.