Archive for the ‘Connection’ category

5 Easy Ways to Tune into your Body

August 26, 2009

Hi all,

As I mentioned in previous posts, Tuning into your body is a great way to become aware of the present moment.  However many people do not know what it takes to really tune in.

In my last post, I identified the breath as a great way to connect with your body. Along with the breath I would like to offer you 5 Easy ways to tune in

The Breath – Taking 3 deep intentional breaths deep into your base of your lungs.

1) Notice sensations running through your hands and feet.  Feel the warmth, the tingling that may be present

2) Focus your attention to the back of your throat.  Do you feel warmth, tightness, openness, emotion that is just sitting there.

3) Focus your attention to your solar plexus – half way between the belly button and the rib cage.  Do you feel warmth, butterflies, openness, tightness

4) Focus your attention to your face – Do you feel tension in your jaw, do you squint your eyes, relax your tongue in your mouth.

5) Focus your attention to your neck and shoulders.  Release any tension you may feel, drop your shoulders, do shoulder rolls.  What sensations do you notice there?

Take another deep breath in to through your nose for the count of 5 and out through your mouth for the count of 5.

These 5 easy steps help you to tune into your body in a sequential manner. Take the opportunity throughout your day to check in with yourself.  What are you feeling in this moment?  Taking this time will help you become more aware of what is happening for your body!

Blog with you later

Gerrianne

Are You Living the Life You Want

August 21, 2009

What does your ideal life look like?  If you were to carry on living your life like you are today, will you feel fulfilled and satisfied in 1 year, 5 years, 10 years?  What is getting in the way of you living the life you want?  What is your relationship like with yourself?  These are some of the questions that I ask my clients when they come in and see me. Many people feel dissatisfied with their life as they know it, yet feel powerless at changing it.

The exercise of looking at how you are currently living your life and how disconnected you are from what you want can be quite eye opening.  Many of my clients blame excessive demands from work, family, and other expectations as the reason why they are off track.  Others will cite their own habits and beliefs as the culprit.  Regardless of what the reasons are, many people are unhappy in their lives.

How are you doing with these questions?  Do you feel on track and excited about the direction your life is going or do you feel disconnected and out of touch with yourself and what you want?  Before you can change anything in your life, you need to develop awareness of what is not working for you.

Awareness begins with developing a healthier, closer relationship with you. This relationship can be nurtured through tuning into the four ways that your body speaks to you: your physical body, your mind, your emotions and your self.

Your physical body:  How does your physical body communicate with you?  With sensations such as hunger, thirst, pain, fatigue and others your body lets you know when it physically needs some attention.  Do you listen to your physical body when it needs something or do you put it off until you have more time to deal with the need?

Your mind:  Sometimes called the “ego”, your mind reminds you of rules, expectations and norms of behavior that “should” be followed. It is also referred to as mental intelligence, knowledge and reason.  The mind shows up in self-talk and is often quite critical in how it speaks to you.   “You should have done this, you could have done that,” etc.  Becoming aware of your inner critic is very helpful in developing a healthier relationship with yourself

Your emotions: Emotions are what make you human and often occur below the surface of your consciousness. Feelings of sadness, frustration, anger, joy, excitement and others can create sensations in your body that often go unnoticed.   When you become aware of and name the emotions that you are feeling, you can learn effective ways of dealing with them.  Often times, when we are under stress, our lives are ruled by our emotions and we become more reactionary rather than approaching the situation from a calm perspective

Your self: This is the voice of the inner you.  The “you” that may not be heard because your mind or emotions take over.

    The key to developing a healthier relationship with yourself is to become aware of all of these voices and noticing which one you give priority to. What are the messages you are getting from your physical body, your mind, your emotions and your self?  Do you give yourself permission to listen to and act on what is right for you?

    Remember, as you venture forth on your journey through life, be gentle on yourself.  It is only with awareness that you can change anything.  It is through reflecting on how you are living your life, telling yourself the truth and being with yourself in the present moment that allows you to discover another beautiful layer of you.

    Blog with you later.

    Gerrianne

    Conscious Eating

    July 9, 2009

    I woke up this morning and realized I have been in a bit of a fog.  I have been working hard getting content developed for my new website being launched in August, writing newsletters, recording podcasts etc.  I have been getting an amazing amount done but yet somehow I have been feeling a little disconnected.

    One of the sure ways I know that I am disconnected with me is when I  eat unconsciously

    I have had several meals lately in front of the computer or standing at the kitchen counter.  There have been times in the past week where I have eaten my entire meal without realizing it and I have not tasted a thing. Last night, I made a bowl of popcorn and added lots of butter and proceeded to eat the whole thing in record time while watching TV.  I could not believe it when I noticed it was all done. I went to bed not feeling great.  When I woke up this morning I really woke up i.e. became conscious of my disconnection to myself.

    What do I really want – I want to have a great relationship with my body and make a conscious decision when I eat to be in relationship with the food I am eating, be conscious of the act of eating and know that I am eating foods that are the best for me

    In this moment: What can I do right now – Breathe and be gentle on myself.  I want to acknowledge what I have been doing well – I have been eating gluten free for the past three weeks without difficulty, I am drinking more water, I stopped eating those potatoes the other night (that does not happen often), and I have cut back on caffeine. There have been many other positive things as well.

    In this moment: What do I notice?  – I notice that when I recognize my eating is not what I would like it to be, I start to beat myself up and notice all that I don’t do.  However, when I start to list what I do well, I acknowledge myself,  and feel more connected with my humanness.  Many of my eating habits are just that, habits that I am changing over time.  What I do know is that I am much more conscious of what I am eating and when I am eating than I have ever been before

    For years, my relationship with food was very unhealthy.  I would always be on the lookout for pastries, breads, desserts etc. and I realized I would go to food to stuff my feelings and avoid being real.  I would either be in overload with food or would deny myself what I wanted.  I was obsessed with my weight and focused on what I should not eat vs what I wanted to eat. When I look back on the way I used to be with food and how I am now (most of the time), I see how far I have come in my quest to eat more consciously.  As I shed my old habits, and shift my beliefs about my relationship with food, I am amazed how much better I feel.

    The biggest part of conscious eating is relationship with yourself. Spend time in appreciation of your body and all it does for you. Nurture it and be kind. After all, it has taken you this far and you need it to be there for the duration.

    Take care all and I will blog with you later.

    Gerrianne

    Good morning Body!!!

    June 29, 2009

    How many days do you jump (or stumble) out of bed, thinking about what you have to get done in one/two or three hours from NOW?  You head into the shower and the list of things you need to do is running like a ticker tape through your head.  From there, you grab your coffee, read the paper, feed the dog, get the kids up and out the door and before you know it you are in the car, heading off to work and you are wondering how you got there.

    If you can relate to this scenario you are not alone. Thousands of people each and every day operate by remote control, going through the same routine morning after morning.  Do you ever stop and say – “Good morning” to your body. Think about it, our body gets us out of bed, processes all of the lists we need to complete in the day, digests our food, beats our heart, breathes air into our lungs, activates our muscles, maneuvers us throughout the day as well as thousands of other activities.  Yet somehow with all of this great work our body does for us, we neglect it, don’t listen to it and actually abuse it.  Is it any wonder our bodies are breaking down.

    Lately I have started to pay attention to the relationship I have with my body.  I have known for years that I do not feel great when I eat and drink certain things yet, I consume them anyway.  I know how much better I feel when I stretch in the morning, meditate, do some exercise, etc. yet, I find other things to do instead.

    What I have come to realize is that if our friends treated us like we treat our bodies, we would have ditched our friends long ago.  Think about it.  If your friend said, “I don’t care that you don’t like it when I do this, I am going to do it anyway” or “I don’t care that you feel better when I do this, I don’t have time to do that as other things are much more important”.  How would you feel?  Would you stick around? No wonder our bodies are protesting and breaking down.

    The purpose of this blog is not to make you feel guilty.  There is way too much of that in the world and guilt is just our minds way of making us feel bad.  So what can you do to start to build a better relationship with your body.

    Take a deep breath

    Notice the sensations that are running through your body

    Take another deep breath

    Feel your body in this moment in time

    Take another deep breath

    Say hi! to your body and say thank you!

    My hope is that when you read this you begin to develop awareness of your body and how amazing it is. There may be days when you are angry and frustrated at it because it is not there for you the way you need.  On other days, you may be scared that you have neglected it for too long and now are suffering the consequences and cannot undo the damage.  And on other days, you may wonder how come your body is still there for you, even though you have always taken it for granted.  Think of your body as your friend and ask yourself how you would treat a friend?  If you have been out of relationship with it, ask yourself, what can I do NOW to begin to rebuild my relationship with my body.

    Remember: The breath is the most underutilized tool we have to connect us with our body. Use it daily and use it often.  Let me know how you do.

    Blog with you later,

    Gerrianne

    Telling yourself the truth

    June 11, 2009

    I just had the opportunity to read a great blog about limiting beliefs by Kim de Young of Metromom.  It is worthwhile reading for any of you who know that your subconscious beliefs get in the way of moving forward.  She has a great way of sharing her insights. http://metromom.com/MetromomBlog/2009/06/10/women-entrepreneurs-are-limiting-beliefs-holding-you-back/

    Some of the most amazing growth periods in my life and in my business have been because I have taken the time to look at my life, tell myself the truth about how I feel and take some action steps to help me get to where I want to go.  That having been said, sometimes I have to admit, I just don’t want to take a look. Even more than that, I may take a look but I don’t want to tell myself the truth about how I feel. Deep down however, when I do not tell myself the truth, I know that I am kidding myself and eventually it will all catch up with me.

    Today, I want you to ask yourself just one question – In this moment – how do I feel about my life. You may be happy, content, peaceful, excited and energized. I hope so.

    However, for many people this is not how they feel about their life.  Many people are sad, angry, scared, frustrated or any other negative emotion.  If this is the case

    Take an intentional breath

    Name that feeling – it helps to name the emotion – angry, sad, scared

    Ask yourself – what can I do about this RIGHT NOW

    You may want to go outside catch a breath of fresh air, walk around the block,

    You may need to Blow off some steam

    Tell yourself the truth

    Take action

    Take another deep intentional breath

    Let me know how you do and if you have any questions.

    Blog with you later

    Gerrianne

    Celebrate, Celebrate and Celebrate some more

    June 8, 2009

    Do you give yourself permission to celebrate? We all know about the traditional celebrations of birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, graduations and even funerals where there is a celebration of a person’s life.  What about the rest of the time?  Do you only celebrate when there is a formal event to commemorate?  Do you ever celebrate and acknowledge the gift that you are, the accomplishments that you have made, the dreams you have conquered?

    It can be challenging to celebrate.  I know there are times when I have made a list of things I want to get done in a day, worked hard and achieved 80% of what I intended to only to berate myself for not accomplishing 100% and more.  Sound familiar?  The answer is probably YES. How unfair is that!!! You beat yourself up because you did not get it ALL done but get no acknowledgement for doing 80%.

    So my question to you is!!!  When are you enough? When is what you do enough?  Who is setting the yardstick by which you measure yourself?  My goal in writing this blog is to help you recognize how hard you are on yourself, what standards you expect to achieve and how little credit you give to yourself for what you do achieve.  If we only look at what we did not do, how will we ever recognize how hard we work and celebrate who we are.

    Take 3 deep intentional breaths

    Identify simple achievable, realistic goals for what you want to accomplish today

    Set the intention for how you want to feel while working on your goals

    e.g. focused, clear, efficient

    Set priorities

    Break your day and goals into small timed segments

    Set the intention before you begin each segment

    Breathe deeply and intentionally at the beginning of each segment

    Get to work

    Take an intentional breath at the end of the segment

    CELEBRATE WHAT YOU DID

    If you did not get all that you wanted done in that segment, go back to the steps above and identify simple, achievable realistic goals on how you want to accomplish the remainder of your goal.

    ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS – CELEBRATE WHAT YOU DID DO

    Let me know how you celebrate.  How hard is it? What commitment do you want to make about celebrating?

    Take care all and I will blog with you later this week.

    Gerrianne

    What Legacy Will You Leave?

    June 5, 2009

    This past weekend, we attended the funeral for a colleague and friend of my husband.  I had met him a couple of times over the years and I knew his wife casually.  It was a sad day.  He left behind a wife and two young children as well as a whole community of family and friends.  As I sat in the church listening to the words spoken about this man, I was reminded of Stephen Covey’s “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” when he suggests “we begin with the end in mind”.  What legacy do you want to leave behind? This man had lived life fully, he played hard, worked hard and loved his family deeply which was evident in all of the tributes paid to him in that full church. I imagine he would be pleased with how he was remembered.

    This past year, I have seen first hand how cancer has affected 5 people whom I am close to.  Two of these people have done well with their treatments and are back to life as before, a little wiser and more aware of the fragility of life.   Two of these people are still struggling with their disease and are holding steadfast for healthy outcomes.  My thoughts, prayers and intentions are with them.  The fifth succumbed to their disease after 20 years of living with cancer.  Life throws us many challenges and from these we grow.

    What about you?  Where are you in your life?  Are you living your life in integrity with the legacy you want to leave behind?  What is important to you? These questions are not the kind that you can just rattle off the answers to while driving the kids to soccer or off the side of your desk.  These are soul searching questions that require some time and commitment to answer. For my 5 friends, they have had a wake up call to let them know about their own mortality.  Yet for many others, they are living their lives as if they will never die.  What about you?

    So my challenge to you is:

    Take the time to get connected with you.

    Go for a walk or sit quietly in nature and dedicate time to answer these questions,

    Reflect on your life,

    Ask yourself – how do I want to be remembered by my family, friends, colleagues and associates?

    Am I living my life the way I want to live my life.

    If not, what do I want to change?

    Take care and I will blog with you next week.

    Gerrianne