Archive for December, 2017

Vision boards, meditation, mantras, visualization, raising your vibration, crystal healing—we hear about using these techniques to change our lives for the better all the time. But I believe the missing X-factor for most people is self-love. Whether you are trying to find an ideal romantic partner, increase your financial abundance, launch your dream career, or improve your health, working on loving yourself more—right now as you are—is the most powerful thing you can do to improve your life.

As a professional intuitive I’m paid to help people discover what’s holding them back from living at their highest potential. These are some of the tips I share with clients to help them increase self-love and experience a positive shift. This shift may be only subtle at first, but in time working on self-love will create dynamic, lasting results:

1. Forgive yourself for something.

The angels and guides I work with in sessions with clients have told me that the way we treat others is a mirror reflection of how we treat ourselves. If you find yourself cold and judgmental lately with others, you are most likely being cold and judgmental with yourself. When we judge ourselves for past mistakes, we actually perpetuate the energy of that mistake and get trapped. This makes it much harder to move forward and make healthier choices.

Self-love action step: Pick something big (like staying in a toxic relationship too long) and something small (like wishing you’d tried harder to win a plum opportunity in your career)—and work on forgiving yourself for both. Imagine that this happened not to you but to a friend you love very much who is too hard on themselves. What soothing, loving, uplifting balm would you pour into their wound?

We are all capable of far more than we realize.

2. Quit playing small.

What you think you are capable of can have a direct effect on what shows up in your life. Playing small often means settling—for a job you’ve outgrown, a relationship that’s holding you back, a town you don’t want to live in, or maybe even a lunch you don’t want to eat! Sometimes we have to ride out a challenging situation like a job we really want to move on from. Yet the fuller your self-love tank, the quicker you will be able to change or at least improve your circumstances.

Self-love action step: Stop blaming or shaming yourself for your circumstances. Life can be really, really tough. If you’re reading this article, it means you have survived a lot! Think back on a time you pulled off something spectacular you never thought you could. When you have a moment, get out your journal and write down some of your greatest hits, or the occasions when you made your own miracle or really got to shine. We are all capable of far more than we realize.

3. Ask for what you need.

Many times in a session with a client I’ll be told by my angels and guides that the client’s throat chakra is tight. This means they are having trouble expressing their emotions and their needs. Often people do not express their needs because they are afraid their needs will not be met. But self-love is about honoring your needs by expressing them, no matter the outcome. Often simply admitting what we think we need to ourselves and others has the magical effect of bringing us what we truly need.

Self-love action step: Ask for what you think you need from a person this week, whether it’s asking a partner or roommate to help out more with chores or asking your boss to work one day from home. This should have an empowering effect, no matter the answer! Now ask the universe for something—light a candle and say a prayer or make a wish. Then watch for what shows up in your life this week. Asking the universe for things is a powerful act of free will and how we co-create our lives! The best part is the universe is always listening.

Photo: Lane Smith

4. Prioritize what’s important to you.

Do you ever feel as if you are marching in someone else’s parade? Unfortunately, people really will take as much as you are willing to give—at home, at work, in the larger world—until you set a boundary. This can take courage. If you’ve had a novel kicking around your head for a few years, make Saturday afternoons your sacred time to work on it—when no one is allowed to disturb you. Want to improve your health? Make a special trip to the store and buy the ingredients for the Whole30 diet. If the rest of your family wants to eat differently for the next month, that’s their choice.

Self-love action step: Find a quiet moment with your favorite cup of warm deliciousness, and write down your five top priorities for 2018. Five is a powerful number of change and action. Expect some pushback from people in your life on a few of these priorities when you start implementing changes. Stand your ground but also be ready to compromise.

5. Find out who wounded your self-love.

You probably have some subconscious programming placed in your head by loved ones or culture that is hurting your ability to love yourself more. Subconscious blocks can be tricky to uncover. But once you do, healing them can be absolutely transformative.

Self-love action step: The next time you are doing something repetitive that does not involve intellectual activity—like exercising or cleaning the house—ask your higher self, “What is my biggest subconscious block to self-love?” Once you feel your way to an answer, ask who put this idea that you are not good enough or smart enough or attractive enough in your head. Knowing where the information came from will really help you release this block.

6. Practice consistent self-care.

Self-love is a “show-me-don’t-tell-me” proposition. Take your supplements, get enough rest, laugh, and hang out with loved ones to increase self-love. This is a backdoor way to increase your confidence and the feeling of deserving more.

Self-love action step: Your own intuition knows what you truly need. The next time you feel the nudge to grab a kombucha or mineral water on your way into the office instead of your usual cup of joe, act on this impulse of self-love. Focusing on basic self-care should help curb self-sabotaging tendencies.

7. Observe your thoughts.

Persistent negative thoughts, my angels and guides have told me, are like a virus. And when these thoughts are directed at ourselves (“I can’t believe I did that!” or “What must he think of me?”), it can really wound and distort our self-perception.

Self-love action step: Fake it until you make it and feed your system with nourishing thoughts like, “My heart is always in the right place”; “I can give myself a pass on this one”; “I have something unique and special to offer the world”; or, my personal favorite, “I deserve the best!” Just like your body responds positively to being fed healthy food, your mind and emotions will respond positively to being fed healthy thoughts. This can affect the actions you take, the energy you give off, and what shows up in your life.



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Photo: @erikabloompilates

Exercise is a known mood-booster. It’s a healthy way to achieve long-term balance, get your blood flowing, increase oxygen levels, open up the heart, and lower stress. Instead of reaching for short-term fixes like sweets or a glass of wine, try exercise: It improves your mood in the now and going forward.

This series of moves combines inversions, chest openers, and stretches to the flight-or-fight muscles and fast-paced exercises to help boost mood all day long. Focus on finding deep and continuous diaphragmatic breath (allowing the space around the ribs to expand as you breathe in and fall back down as you breathe out) as you move through the exercises, for even more mood boosting. Diaphragmatic breathing helps to lower cortisol by aiding the cleansing of the adrenals.

You can do this series once a day or whenever you’re feeling like you need a pick-me-up.

1. Swimming.

Begin lying on your stomach with your arms extended overhead by your ears. Float your chest up into a long arch. Reach your arms and legs out to lift them off the floor while keeping your belly deepening in and up. Slowly begin to flutter the arms and legs like you are swimming. Inhale for four beats, then exhale for four beats for a total of 12 breaths.

2. Double-leg kick.

Begin lying on your stomach with your hands clasped behind your midback. Bend both knees to kick your heels toward your sitz bones. Keep the fronts of your hips pressed to the mat. Extend your legs straight as you reach your arms back and lengthen your upper spine into an arch. Turn the head to one side as you lower, alternating head turns with each rep. Perform eight times.

3. Telescope arms.

Lie on your right side with your arms extended forward on the mat at shoulder height. Slowly draw the left fingers along the right arm and across the collarbone to come in to a twist with your upper body. Let your gaze follow the left arm as it unfurls on to the mat to create a wide-open chest. Take deep, full, opening breaths.

4. Leg beats/ab scissors.

Start in a chair position with your hands behind your head. Lengthen your head, neck, and shoulders into an abdominal curl. Extend your legs outward to a 45-degree angle, or as low as you can keep your deep core connected and spine in neutral. Keeping the knees straight and the legs turned out, cross your thighs over each other in alternating beats 10 times. Repeat the set three times.

5. Dolphin.

Start in a forearm plank with your belly button pulled into your spine. Fold at the hips to reach your sitz bones up toward the ceiling to come into an up stretch position. Feel the length between your head to your tail. Allow your heels to drop to the floor for a calf stretch. Engage your abdominals to return to a forearm plank. Repeat eight times.


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Photo: Cameron Whitman

If you’re feeling a bit more stuffed than you’d like, don’t fear—even registered dietitians sometimes overindulge! The difference? When they do it, they have an arsenal of weapons to fight off the bloated, sluggish feeling.  We reached out to steal their secrets.

Raw fruits and veggies.

Raw fruits and veggies! I make a point to limit anything packaged over the holidays since my meals tend to be less than perfect. You can find me snacking on a cold apple or sugar snap peas around the holidays!

Lisa Hayim, R.D., founder of The Well Necessities

Yogurts with berries and nuts.

If I’ve just had an indulgent night, instead of waking up miserable and full of regret, I wake up and set myself up for success with a clean, healthy breakfast. My go-to is Plain Siggi’s Yogurt with berries, raw nuts, and some high-fiber cereal. Skipping meals is never a good idea and is an unhealthy mental way to cope with indulgence. Not only does this breakfast give me the fiber, protein, and healthy fat I need, but it also helps me refocus my palate and mind to have a healthy day ahead!

Allison Aaron, R.D., founder of Nutrition Curator

A green smoothie.

A green smoothie! The combination of fruits, leafy greens, avocado, and other whole-food ingredients makes me feel instantly nourished, refreshed, and helps to detoxify my system. I also love to add in energy-boosting ingredients like matcha green tea powder and collagen protein.

—Cristal Sczebel, CHN, founder of Nutrition in the Kitch

I love my spa smoothie! This smoothie recipe contains lemons, greens, and cucumber, not only is it refreshing, but it detoxifies, decreases water retention and gets your right back on track first thing the morning after a big meal.

Kelly LeVeque, CHN, best-selling author and mbg class instructor

Fresh ginger tea.

I like to drink a strong, fresh ginger tea. It feels really warming from the inside—and it is! It helps boost metabolism and digestion. It feels instantly grounding and helps bring me back to balance when it’s getting particularly busy.

Kimberly Snyder, founder of the Beauty Detox diet and mbg class instructor

There is nothing more resetting to me than a kick of ginger. It wakes up all of my senses. If I am really feeling pokey, I will make beet-based juice with a boatload of ginger.

Kimberly Evans, R.D., founder of Whole Health Nutrition


Photo: Keilidh Ewan

Citrus. A plain bowl of a cut-up grapefruit or blood orange or even a little clementine out of the peel! It’s hydrating, which is helpful in winter (and with the abundant alcohol), refreshing, and super simple after lots of complex and typically starchy dishes.

Carlene Thomas, R.D., founder of Healthfully Ever After and Next Great Nutritionist winner


Water! Most indulgent meals are also pretty salty meals, so drinking a lot of water that night and the next day helps to cleanse the body and decrease bloating. Even though it sounds counterintuitive to consume more water to get rid of bloat (or water retention), it’s actually the best way to flush everything out of the system and start to feel healthier.

—Sammi Haber, R.D., founder of Nutrition Works NY and Next Great Nutritionistwinner

Bone broth.

I have to say a good mug of salted broth is my instant “feel-good” food. As someone with Celiac disease, the holidays mean risking sketchy ingredients that could possibly contain gluten. Broth’s healing power on the guts is perfect for making me feel my best.

Diana Rodgers, R.D., founder of Sustainable Dish


My favorite thing to instantly feel healthier is spirulina—that blue-green algae that has a host of health benefits including antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and protein. This powder is easy to throw into a smoothie and makes me feel confident that I’m getting the vitamins I need, especially when I’m in the midst of the holiday buffet season.

Leah Silberman, R.D., founder of Tovita Nutrition

Herbal tea.

Herbal tea. I don’t go anywhere during the holidays without herbal tea of some kind. When I drink herbal tea after indulging in too much holiday food, I automatically feel less bloated and more balanced from the inside out.

Kim Suddeath, R.D., founder of Unrefined RD

Lemon water.

During the busy holiday season, I always reach for a cup of honey and ginger warm lemon water to feel instantly healthier during this busy time of year. At a time when sugar and salt consumption is at an all-time high, I like to help my digestive system perform at its best with plenty of water plus the anti-inflammatory benefits of ginger and honey.

—Emily Kyle, R.D., founder of Emily Kyle Nutrition


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