Sunday, February 12, 2017

How to live without sugar - 10 tips

Living without sugar is still a daily challenge for me. I've covered this topic often because going sugar free helps me so much, but it SO isn't easy, so I hope these posts help you, too. Especially around Valentine's Day. But let's face it, every month of the year has at least one holiday that's infused with sugar.

A February free of... - 2/1/17
Raw, vegan lifestyle isn't just for crazies anymore - 3/11/16

30 days of "no" sugar - successes and challenges, and moving forward - 2/9/16

30 days of sugar free: Kicking the Addiction - 1/28/16

30 days Sugar Free: Switching date sugar - 1/11/16

Committing to 30 days without sugar - YOU will hold me to it - 1/10/16

Partying with a restrictive diet - yes, it can be done! - 3/24/12

Healthy Living 2: Healthy Eating - 8/5/10

Healthy Living 1 - Read the Label - 7/28/10

Bottom line, I know I feel exponentially better without it - sugar gives me headaches, tummy aches, joint aches, throat aches, and fatigue.
And I know that if I go without it, I no longer crave it. And now that I've done this many times I definitely don't crave it even when I'm "off the wagon" like I used to - donuts, gummy bears, coffee with cream and sugar, sodas. But still the occasional sugar sneaks into my diet if I'm not vigilant - and it's mostly when I forget to read the label or go back to something I know I don't need. Or walk by the chocolate aisle when my hormones are spiked (which is rare, but it happens).

Once I go 3 days without it, I lose the habit of needing a chocolate treat after dinner (which keeps me from sleeping soundly anyway, so why bother). Once I go a week, I've practically forgotten all about it. And once I go 21 days, my taste buds have all regenerated and any small amount of sugar makes one bite feel like an entire funnel cake flooding to my brain.

Honestly, if you haven't tried it, do. It'll change the way you look at life. 21 days without sugar - GO!

But we're human. I mean, come on. When I commit to a month of sugar free, I have to set myself up for success and pull out all the stops to help me block something that might derail me.

Here are 10 tips to removing sugar from your bloodstream, one date at a time: 

1. Tell everyone, especially your family. This will act as an accountability system first and foremost, but also I find that telling my husband what I'm doing is paramount. "Don't bring any of that junk home!"  Yeah, surprise chocolate bars aren't good.

2. Stock up! Stock the fridge with berries, fruit, healthy snacks, and especially dates and date sugar - it's not real sugar, it's just called that because we Americans are addicted to the stuff. It's finely ground date powder, and it works in recipes just like sugar. I only use it when I'm making something for a party - because I don't want to feel left out of the dessert course. [grin]

3. Read every label. As stated above, it's hiding. In your ketchup, granola, yogurt. And learn the aliases - high fructose corn syrup, dried cane syrup, invert sugar, molasses, sucrose (or any word ending in "-ose"), brown rice syrup, honey, and maple syrup are all sugars that will affect your body poorly.

4. Try unsweetened. If you drink tea, non dairy milk, 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

10 things I learned in 1997, and the 20 years it took me since then to truly learn them

I was in a book store in Oregon, about to embark on a journey across land and sea, when a book fell off the shelf and dropped to my feet. I looked around to see if someone had pushed it - the shelves were the old school library kind, where books were backed up against each other on metal shelves between narrow aisles. But no one was there. I was 23 and a little jumpy. I bent down to pick up the green book and read its unsuspecting, all-text cover. "The Celestine Prophesy," it read. Hmm, prophesy, I thought, that's cool. But what's a Celestine Prophesy? 

So I flipped it over and read the summary of a man on a journey to find an ancient manuscript. It felt somehow connected to the journey I was embarking on. I wasn't headed to South America, but it didn't matter, I had been delving into the depths of myself with my first metaphysical teacher for a year and was ready to dive further. I was headed to Scotland, and it was cold and dark and raining there. Perfect conditions for reading.

I bought the book. Little did I know it would become the syllabus for my life.

If only I'd taken those 10 celestine insights to heart and lived them like a code, I might not have needed the following two decades for them to sink in. (But where would be the fun in that?) The shift I went through that year in Glasgow, commencing with the celestine insights, affected my mind so profoundly, that I wrote my 3rd book of poems based on it, including one that summed up the insights:

What I learned from James Redfield's Celestine Prophesy in 1997:

1. Talk to strangers. 
Carl Jung's Synchronicity Theory suggests that there are no coincidences. That every connection has a purpose, a meaning, and a message. So taking that to heart, I began to talk to strangers - something that I was warned against growing up. It took me 20 years to get here, but now I know that every stranger on the plane next to me has a message, a connection, and a purpose. So I talk to them.

2. Know your history. 
If you don't, you'll likely repeat it - and the worst parts of it to boot. I loved studying genealogy early on, but what I didn't realize back then was how deeply connected to it I was. This circles back around in insights 4 and 6.

3. Get into the woods. Often.
We have the same xylem and phloem that plants do - our energy ebbs and flows, and is intrinsically connected to everything. This is the quantum field. We gain much more than oxygen from plants, and vise versa. We are connected on a deep level, and the more we notice the beauty and magic of nature, the brighter and lighter we become.

4. Release your story. 
We are programmed from birth to use one of Jung's four core personality dramas to gain energy from each other. These four dramas play off of each other, and the instant we learn to let them go - to release our "story" - we begin to draw energy from the true source, and begin to step into our natural joy. Otherwise known as "let go, and let God."

5. Love is the answer. 
After we've let go of our story, we can begin to have compassion for everyone else's. Instead of taking someone's traffic violation as a personal offense, we can think, "wow they must be having a bad day," and send them some love. What we put out comes back to us ten-fold. So put out love.

6. Clear the past, and all for a reason. (A two-for-one) 
Connecting this to #2 and #4, clearing your drama even further by letting go of what has transpired - the past is behind you, leave it there - and start to get curious about what is the real reason you chose the parents and family you were born to. How have all of those dramas made you into the person you've become? And why?

7. Engage the flow. 
Learn the true meaning of flow. Go with the flow. Allow the flow. Surrender. All of these things mean, on a deep level, to follow the breadcrumbs that the universe sends you. Combine this with #1 and you're golden. Synchronicity + Surrender = Success.

8. Raise the bar (vibration).
Using #3 to tap into nature, and #7 to allow the flow, your energy and vibration can maintain a constant, higher state, that you can in turn then help others raise their vibration. Be the positive force in the room. Connect to your higher self and do what you came here to do. Uplift.

9. Study Agape. 
When you focus on the world's beauty and light, you begin to live in a state of awe - or agape: true, one love. This is connection to source. It can be synonymous with enlightenment. Chase the rainbow.

10. Live full out.
The first time I heard that line it gave me the vision of full-throttle, pedal to the medal. And now I know that's not quite right. "Living full out" is using up every minute of every day like it's your last, but not to the point of destruction - to the point of fulfillment. Fuel your engine right so it'll run all day and sleep all night. Give back to humanity not so you'll be remembered, but because you can. Live with intention and BE the lighthouse so lost ships can find their way.

It's these 10 insights that Redfield's taught me that have put me on a course to teaching this to others. Tomorrow starts the 5th year that I've taught Manifesting with Synchronicity, based on the Celestine Prophesy, and I feel honored to facilitate his message, helping others find their way. It is in this way that I have learned to LIVE Synchronously. With nature, with my path, with my soul circle of friends and family.

Be the light. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

A February free of...

Welcome February! I am embarking on a month with the theme of free. I have tried gluten free. Dairy free. Grain free. Sugar free. Alcohol free. Caffeine free. But I rarely try them all at once - I like the old adage "everything in moderation," although there are times when I do adopt all of that. At once. For months. I know, that's crazy talk. But I felt amazing. I was pain free. Insomnia free. Worry free.

So now is that time again. After the holidays, and then another month of "I'm kind of being good" with my diet (not the weight loss kind of diet, but my clean eating regime) while on the road, I figured February was a good (short) month to get back on track.

I am committing to cutting all of those things out, while adding in a daily workout of any kind (from just walking to cross country skiing), a morning and midday smoothie with my Complete protein
Today's smoothie:
Pumpkin, cranberry, soymilk,
flax, hemp seeds, and Complete
powder, a dinner prior to 6pm with mostly vegetables, 90 ounces of water, a daily reflection (journal, meditation, yoga), and asleep by 10pm.

The root of this practice comes from our company's commitment to health, and Dr. Mitra Ray's creation of the Transform 30 program. The millennials condensed that to a 10 day version (Shred10), and our health coach team commits to one Shred10 per month. This always helps me stay on track because I know I'm getting at least 10 days a month with a good system. If you want a group to join and start some healthy habits with, comment below. Our mission is to #takehealthyback with our #healthylivingrevolution, because we're sick and tired of seeing people sick and tired.

I know personally when I commit to this healthy regimen I feel so much more alive and ready to take on the world! I hope this inspires you to do the same!