We are now nearly a week into 2020…
How is it feeling to you so far, my friend?
What is really coming up for me thus far this year is DUALITY.
I keep picturing a calm eye in a storm…
A wheel or gear, simply turning over and over, while the world spirals wildly around it…
There is unarguably a sense of chaos in the world at large right now…
And yet, at the center, is YOU.
You, breathing, feeling, sensing, contemplating…
You, choosing, each moment, how to respond to the energy around you.
Some of you know I recently took a massive journey to Peru with my beloved and some friends of ours to do some deep inner work with one of my Peruvian teachers.
I won’t go into the wilderness of that experience now 😉
But what I want to share is the return journey home…
Ben and I traveled nearly 48 hours…
taking an overnight bus, spending a long day in Lima, then catching a red eye flight back to Los Angeles.
And all that after nearly 3 weeks of plant medicine journeys and lots of traveling and some pretty intense dysentery and gut turmoil!
We finally arrived back at LAX airport and managed to have a super smooth transition through customs, out the door, onto a shuttle and into a Lyft back to our car, parked on the east side of LA outside our friends’ house.
We were so delighted and relieved to climb into our familiar little Prius.
We started the engine, and the sound of an airplane erupted from the formerly quiet vehicle!
Our catalytic converter had been stolen!
(For the second time in LA. Apparently the part contains platinum— easy cash for those bold enough to roam Los Angeles taking the part from the undercarriage of countless unsuspecting Priuses!)
Imagine our reaction in this moment…
Exhausted and depleted, and definitely NOT closer to making the final 2 hour drive to Santa Barbara and our long lost bed!
I clearly recall this moment… even as the reality of what tasks lay before us dawned on me and disappointment lurched in my stomach, I distinctly remember making an immediate decision.
I will NOT sweat this.
I will NOT let this stress me out.
I will NOT fall into despair over the time or money or inconvenience this repair will take.
I will roll with it!
And amazingly, that is what Ben and I did.
Neither of us complained or bitched or moaned.
We heaved some sighs, made some phone calls, and did what needed to be done as swiftly as possible.
Several hours later, after phone calls to AAA, our insurance company, a rental car company, a tow to the nearest Toyota dealership, and an impromptu sushi dinner, we were in a rental car driving home.
This was a huge VICTORY!
It is not easy to remain calm in the midst of frustrating situations that are completely out of your hands.
And yet, they happen!!!
It’s all part of the very intentional curriculum of this Universe-ity.
What I want to share is this takeaway:
It would have been easy (SO easy) to get stressed and anxious and overwhelmed in this situation.
But those reactions never actually help ease our lives!
In fact, they only cause more discomfort, create more friction and bring more of what we don’t want.
This occurrence feels like a great metaphor for January 2020.
Things will break down, and get stolen, and fall apart.
And, things are also so incredibly awesome.
Life is not either fantastic or challenging.
They are not mutually exclusive.
D U A L I T Y.
In the wake of this ‘shitty-but-that’s just life’ moment…
I want to share a few things that I am doing this January to hop over the overwhelm and still get stuff done.
1. 40-day Sadhana (spiritual practice)
Along with my spirit sister Briena Pearl, I began a discipline on January 1st that includes kundalini yoga, breathwork and chanting a mantra. This structure is intended to be carried out over 40 consecutive days. So far, its been amazing to start our day early from this place of spiritual connection and moving my body and my energy.
You can listen to the mantras we’re working with HERE (for dispelling fear and calling in grace and victory) and HERE (for feminine divinity).
2. Embodied Gratitude
While I was in Peru, I learned a daily practice from one of my teachers that completely blew my mind. I think of it as “Practice #1” because it is so basic and foundational.
When I rise from bed in the morning:
I get on my knees, put my forehead to the earth and thank our planet and our mother Earth for this life, for the beauty and majesty and generosity of our home.
Then, I raise my hands to the sky and give thanks to father sky for another day, for the sun and moon, the stars and planets, the universe in which we live.
This foundational practice is literally gratitude embodied.
What would happen if you started every day like that?
3. Purging my filing cabinet
Using New Order by my organizing muse Fay Wolf (I highly recommend this book, y’all!!!), I went through my filing cabinet and purged over 10 pounds of paper clutter. I was able to clear my desk, eliminate piles in my living space, and start the process of creating a new system for reducing ongoing piles of mail and paperwork that, well, pile up!
What an amazing feeling!
What an excellent way to start a new year!
4. Upgrading my digestion
After a trip where I got incredibly ill with a bacterial gut infection (meh), took a round of antibiotics, then launched into an indulgent Christmas vacation, my digestion definitely needs a reboot.
Though I am a health coach, I too struggle with constipation from time to time, probably more often than I want to admit!
That train stops here.
I’m working on a new worksheet for myself to stay accountable and keep track of the many ways I can (and want) to improve my digestion and elimination. As inspiration and reference, I read this article by Dr. Mark Hyman.
Digestion & constipation a struggle for you as well?
Download my free Morning Water Meditation here!
It will help you not only start your day hydrated (crucial for healthy elimination), but will also invite you cultivate gratitude and create ritual… important elements of a stress-free, healthy morning routine!
For those of you feeling a bit overwhelmed this January, I hope this little tale of turmoil and tips to reset are helpful!
Wishing you a blessed and even-keel new year. Don’t forget you can always reach out for support. I’d love to hear where your anxiety and overwhelm is showing up. firstname.lastname@example.org
In love & delight,