Warning! Are you becoming the Hermit Empath?

“Mom.  Name the friends you hang out with.”  Sigh.  I have friends, but I am a grown woman and I like my alone time.  It is a familiar conversation in my house.  For highly sensitive people, sometimes it is very hard to be around large crowds of people, noises, and anyone who might be trying to hide things.  So that pretty much is everyone, right?

Let me explain.  We all hide things to a certain degree, of course.  However, if you are an empath, you pick up on so much more.  <<< If you aren’t sure, I liked to my first article on my experiences. Anyway, here is an example of something that might happen to me.  Someone sends me a text or a message.  It seems like an ordinary message, but behind it I feel the reason they sent it and can tell that there are ulterior motives and/or strings attached.  I decide whether or not I want to answer and how to answer as I know that there is something else coming.  Maybe this sounds a bit woo-woo to you, but it really happens.  Another example, someone says something in conversation that seems innocent to others.  I look around at a gathering and see if anyone else believes what they just said and people are buying it.  I am in disbelief because I feel the lie…and it makes me uncomfortable so I usually change the subject if it is a group of people or I just decide that it’s time to leave.

Final example on this…you go to social media and you see a series of clues that someone you know has put out there, but it’s like you have x-ray vision and no one in your circle does.  You casually mention that so and so seems to be really upset and you think maybe they need to talk about it or something along those lines, and suddenly you are starting gossip when the truth is, you were really just concerned.  This is the one that makes me upset because people are like how do you know?  What did you hear?  What do you know?  Erm.  I just felt it.  So perhaps you back away slowly from this because my, that escalated quickly.  Thus the makings for the empath hermit.

3 Social Tips for the Empath:

  1. Get centered before you go out to any event.  What does that mean anyway?  Put both feet flat on the ground (barefoot) and if you are sitting sit up straighter through the spine.  Shrug your shoulders up towards your ears, but then relax them back down as if you are shrugging, but opening up the heart area.  In my Head|Heart|Health Club, I teach these steps in a series of videos relating to yoga and connecting to the body.  So now I want you to place one hand on your stomach area above your navel.  I want you to take a deep breath in and then hold at the top and then release the breath feeling your hand rise and fall.  Do this for a round of three.  This helps get you steady, especially if you suffer from anxiety, and this breath technique is available to you at all times should you need it.  You might feel like you need to deep breathe to connect to your energy more than someone’s at a party or event as a reminder that your feelings are still there and you can then snap back into your own body.  This is very effective.
  2. Dress for the event.  Visualization and physical reminders help as well.  You might want to wear pink to remind yourself to imagine a bubble of love.  For someone not familiar with this practice, it is easy to get caught up in these bad feelings, and feel miserable for knowing things.  As we practice “bubbling up” we can visualize a bubble of pink surrounding our physical body and carrying it with us into the crowd.  As many people are quick to point out the negatives of humanity, you are going to remind yourself that there is good out there as well, and carry that feeling with you in the bubble.  Think of it as Harry Potter’s Patronus…”a projection of your most positive feelings”, and only you know that it’s there.  If you like to wear a necklace or bracelet with a word or charm on it to remind you of that, go for it.  I actually wear a bracelet with the word gratitude.
  3. Do work prior to going out and when you come home.  Here comes the part that I teach my club, talk about on my page during my live chats, and do myself daily.  I journal and I do the work.  I work through all of the feelings, and I have learned to tell immediately what is mine and what is not.  I protect myself from the negative energy of others through a combination of yoga, journaling, meditation/prayer, and more.  It has really helped me over the years take back what is my energy and sift through what might be a negative feeling that merged with mine.  For very specific instructions, videos, tutorials, breathwork, and over 30 journal prompts designed specifically for the empath, check out my guide for your soul.  <<<

The work that I have done on myself and others has helped me become more aware of how I navigate the world.  I could have saved myself loads of pain over the years if I had realized what was happening earlier in my life, but the good thing is that now that I know, I am able to get out more and make better friendships and connections than I did prior to learning how to control my highly sensitive emotions.

Raise Your Energy Right Now With These 3 Tips!

3 tips to raise energyI know you feel it too.  Some wonky, stagnant, possibly influenced by Mercury Retrograde, weird vibes.  The downdraft of negative energy is flowing around your T.V., other people, and your cell phone.  Anytime you see a headline of something negative, you feel yourself being pulled down.  Every click-baity headline designed to grab your energy is doing just that.

It is more vital than ever to surround yourself by those types of energies you really want to attract and protect yourself from the ones you wish you could repel.  So how exactly do we repel the bad stuff?

We raise our energy!

We work each and every day to detoxify our heads, hearts and improve our overall health by clearing ourselves of the energetic gunk that is trying to drag us down.  Our programming, our limiting beliefs, and much more that feels “heavy” and not in true alignment with who we want to be has got to be shed like a snake skin.

Great!  How do we do this?

  1. Stop.  Drop.  And meditate or sit in easy pose (sukhasana).  I am going to give you a tip from my Club this month.  I knew that people would need support during this time, so I wanted to introduce easy and accessible yoga poses to my Head|Heart|Health Club.  I want you to begin your practice seated…anywhere, but outside in the sun is great as well.  Close your eyes and feel the earth beneath you.  Feel every part of your body and visualize the earth supporting you.  You are at peace.  Take a deep breath in through your nose and as you let out a long exhale, feel your feet, legs and pelvis releasing a bit further into the ground.  As you begin to surrender to the pose, notice how you feel without resistance.  The spine naturally feels better and more light.  The crown of the head is nice and level.  You feel a good connection to the ground beneath you and you are at ease.  Thus easy pose has already helped stabilize your mood.
  2. Express gratitude for the world around you.  Do not spend this time yearning for the things you do not have.  Instead, appreciate the good in your life and it will come back to you ten-fold.  This practice begins to increase the abundance in life and I have personally noticed a huge shift upon repeating my 30 day Gratitude Journal exercises.  If you need more support on this, feel free to visit my E-book link.  The science of being thankful for what we already have in our lives was the true basis of how I learned to heal what I once perceived as a broken body.  Shifting my perspective to what I could do versus what I could not do continues to help me through life as well as through my yoga practice.  I am so very grateful that I can move again without crying because I can remember a time when this was one of the hardest things I ever did.  Making it from the bed to the bathroom.  Little by little, that practice of waking up and saying thank you with each step healed my soul.
  3. Learn to eat more mindfully.  This one can be a difficult task for lots of people.  I am teaching in my Club this month that eating Mindfully does not mean starvation.  It simply means being more aware of what certain types of food do to your moods, how you feel after you eat, and what actually makes you feel amazing versus what makes you feel regret and guilt.  Mindful eating also involves higher vibrational foods such as clean eating.  One ingredient good ole’ vegetables, fruits, nuts, and other things you can actually pronounce.  As well as upping the water intake daily.  It really can be that simple to start raising your vibration and blocking the energy drain.

I hope you enjoyed these tips today and if you want more information on anything that I teach, please see my brand new online portal.  When you click I need support, it takes you to read about the Club and what we have to offer you!

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7 Brilliant Ways to Get Rid of Stress

I bet that you didn’t want to start your week off the way it happened.  But there it is.  Nothing you can do about it.  You forgot a major timeline…or you got sick and missed an important meeting.  Whatever it is, it has you feeling stressed and it’s only the start of your work week.  Because you are stressed out, you start to feel anxious as well.  Which then leads into all sorts of scenarios in your head.  You know your boss is looking at you funny.  What?  Why is everyone in the workroom laughing except they got quiet when you walked in?  Ack.  Your boss thinks you are an idiot.  Chances are, none of these things are true.  But what if they are?  Really?

7 Brilliant Ways to Get Rid of Stress

 

  1. Stop taking things so personally.  Maybe, just maybe, the people in the workroom were laughing at the fact that they were about to surprise you with a party.  Okay, it could happen.  But even if they were laughing at you, who cares?  Yes, you do.  I know that.  Now think about this, this is not a reflection of your actions.  It is a reflection of theirs.  Be polite.  Be professional.  Move on.
  2. Stay in the present moment.  Don’t create a story or a situation that was never there to begin with because that’s how you become your biggest enemy.  I know that you might feel stress creeping up so what if you shifted your attention out of worst case scenario mode and went back to the task at hand?  Always allow your thoughts to pass by, inspect them, and carry on with the present moment.  Here is my friend’s article on releasing anger with her affirmations.
  3. Work out and move your body!  I was doing research for the new yoga flow that I am creating for a workshop, and it said that one of the top ways to remove and release stress was through yoga.  Of course that doesn’t surprise me, so see my previous articles on 3 simple exercises to keep you fit or 10 yoga tips for beginners.
  4. Spend time with your loved ones.  Sometimes, when it’s quitting time, it’s best to quit and go on home.  Your work will be there.  You only have one life and this isn’t a test.  Play some loud music on the way home that you love, unwind, and by the time you get home, try very hard to stay in the present moment there too.
  5. Unplug and unwind.  This one is really hard.  I know it.  it has proven to be difficult for me as well.  I am very thankful for our family vacations away from people…and things…in the mountains.  With literally no service.  No tech.  No T.V.  I know right?  Sounds amazing.
  6. Find your quiet place.  Which brings me to this one, and I know you are thinking you can’t find time to do this, but find time to meditate, journal, take a bath, or do something that you can really focus on in peace and quiet.  Yes, even you new moms can do this!  You really need to make this part of your routine.
  7. Prepare for your next day.  We always all get ready by picking out our clothes, and not having to rush.  Take a minute to do a list of things before you leave the office, home office, school, etc, and when you get in, it will be there to focus you.  That way, you leave it there where it belongs.  Don’t take it home with you.  You can find balance in your work and life.  This leads you on a better path to wellness!

Still feel like you need help?  Sign up for my 4 Weeks to Wellness course OR get help in a closed support group.

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Top 10 yoga tips for beginners.

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Starting a yoga practice?  Read on.

If you are reading this because you are about to start a new yoga practice, welcome.  Before you run out and buy a new mat, have a look at a few of my suggestions.  I have been “practicing” yoga for years, but until this year, I was not serious about my practice…if that makes sense.  I am completing my 200 hour Vinyasa yoga teacher training in June, and I wanted to pass on some tips that can really motivate and help you stick to your practice.

  1. Buy a good mat.  If you are looking for a yoga mat, there are literally thousands out there.  Before you buy one, see if you can use the ones at the studio to get comfortable with them, then ask what thickness or brand they use.  I prefer a thicker mat, like this one << unless you like hot yoga, and I have this one.
  2. Find a good studio.  If you are uncomfortable when you go there the first time, give it another chance.  If you are not comfortable again, try another studio.  You want the vibe of the studio to be completely welcoming.  They should show you around, tell you where things are located, and basically be helpful from the moment you walk in.  My studio is awesome about that.  It really is the little things that mean a great deal to me.
  3. Respect your body’s knowledge.  If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.  Don’t be afraid to tell the teacher before class if a particular area is causing you some discomfort.  That way the teacher will know ahead of time and can give you a few modifications.
  4. Don’t compare yourself to others.  This might seem like a no brainer, but sadly, it’s not.  You constantly have to re-align yourself to focus on you and you alone.  What Mr. Yoga Guru at the front of the class can do has no bearing on your life whatsoever.  Great, he can fold in half like a pretzel and then stand up with his hands.  Enjoy the moments that you have with your progress.  Where you are is very important.  It’s the start of a great practice. 
  5. Buy comfortable, not see through, clothes.  Please don’t feel you have to clothe yourself in head to toe designer yoga wear.  But at the same time, do a quick mirror check to make sure it’s not thin as tracing paper when you bend over.  As lovely as your under garments might be, heck as lovely as mine might be, I prefer my underoos to stay hidden.  I don’t spend a lot, but I make sure my tank tops stay in place and my leggings are not sheer. Note: I use the Yoga Club.  Seriously.  You can’t go wrong with how cool the clothes are, and a box comes to you for 60% off retail!!
  6. Don’t take yourself too seriously.  My friends would say this is pretty easy for me, but if you step out of a pose, or erm fall off the surf board during SurfSet, as long as you aren’t hurt, just smile and get back up.  We are lifelong learners and it’s important to find an inner sense of humor with this process.
  7. Breathe.  Sometimes, I feel like I am breathing the loudest in the room.  I take the phrase “ocean breath” seriously when my teachers taught me how to breathe.  It has steadied my entire practice.  Ujjayi breath is a 3 part breath and I find it very calming.  Whatever kind of breathing you use, just remember to listen for your breath as you steady yourself.
  8. Make your practice a habit.  If you make a regular practice of yoga at least three times a week, it will be more beneficial to you in the long run.  You will become more flexible as the weeks progress and you will be able to flow into the poses without thinking about it.  You can even do 15 minutes of Sun Salutations at home in the mornings. 
  9. Communicate with your teacher.  Stay after class for a second if you think you didn’t catch just how to do a pose or if something didn’t feel right.  You can ask them to watch you do downward facing dog for a minute and ask them to go over the most important tips for really getting into that pose.  It seems so simple, but if you don’t press into the knuckle mounds of your hand evenly you might walk away with sore wrists.  Take the time to ask.  It’s really okay.  You can also read my pin about how to avoid wrist pain.
  10. Don’t rush.  Take time to really slow down for yoga.  Be present.  Stay for Savasana…the resting time.  Focus on your breathing.  Check in with your body.  And of course, it’s fine to congratulate yourself for doing the best that you can.  You did it!  Repeat Namaste when your teacher says it at the end as a form of respectful closing to thank your teacher for sharing their energy with you. 

Yoga Sutras

 

 

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The Law of Pure Potentiality…

I need to clear up some common misconceptions.  Yoga is a practice.  Not a religion.  Just like how Buddhism is a way of life…a practice or philosophy.  If you come from another religion or way of life can you take these philosophies with you back to your religion or way of life?  Yes.  But people fear what they do not know or understand.  So they are afraid to go deeper into the world of “stillness”.  Therein lies the problem.  At the beginning of my yoga practice yesterday, the teacher said “Be still, and know that I am God.”  When we are practicing our stillness…or just being, we are closer to who we are really meant to be.

This is where Deepak Chopra’s The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success come into my practice.  One of the absolute hardest steps for me to apply to my life is to take time each day just being silent.  Some people who know me are laughing…my parents I’m sure.  But what this really means is that I have to work at just being.  That seems like such a small thing…to just be.  To sit alone in silent meditation actually means that you clear your mind.  As thoughts come and go you focus on the moments between the thoughts.  Not the thought itself.  Pretty soon you are focusing on those in between moments for even longer and one day, you will come to realize that your thoughts have finally stilled.

And therein lies my problem.  One thought produces one more like it, then it spirals, and so on and so forth.  So I am working on this ability to carry stillness with me.  Chopra writes “Through silence, through meditation, and through non-judgement, you will access the first law, the Law of Pure Potentiality.”  Many times people say “Oh I’m not judging…but blah, blah, blah.”  If you have to say you are not judging, here’s a hint, you might be.  But that’s okay for now.  Work on letting that thought go and focusing on something positive you learned from that situation.  If your mind is constantly on re-wind and you are judge, jury and executioner of your thoughts and you can’t let the negative go from a situation, you need meditation in your life.  You know it costs less than therapy…it does.

Here is an introduction for you to watch:

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Restorative Yoga…finding my place

Coming to yoga from a place of pain…Aimee’s perspective:

I was afraid my body was not ready for this class.  In fact, after taking the beginner yoga class, I waited weeks before coming back in to give it another go.  You see, the ego whispers to me “That was too hard, you must give up now.”  It is coming from a place of pain.  Pain I have lived with for the last 5 years since developing the symptoms and ultimately the diagnosis of fibromyalgia.  But last night on my mat, as I held the pose for a little bit longer, my mind tried to scream at me again to register and focus on my pain.  I then shushed it, and focused on my breathing instead.  And guess what happened?  It worked.

What is restorative yoga anyway?  Basically it’s the best thing ever for your body if you are new to yoga and trying to come at it from a place of pain and/or needing healing postures.  Click the above link to find out more.

Three weeks ago as I was getting ready to take the first class, an acquaintance called me, but I said I had to go get ready for yoga.  She asked if she could go; however, she is not known for her patience, so I explained this was not like traditional yoga.  She said she was fine with it…haha.  We arrived and were told to get bolsters, a blanket, a block and a belt.  She kept asking me questions about what we were going to do.  I did mention I had not taken this class before.  Throughout class, she fidgeted.  She whispered.  She twitched.  She complained under her breath.  I was NOT happy.  Yoga is MY place for peace.  If you invite yourself to come with me, you need to respect that this is already hard for me, and I like to relax.

At the end, oh the end, I was mortified.  Tea was served, and I dearly love hot tea.  As it was being passed out, fidgety gal loudly says WHAT IS IT?  I stared at her.  It’s tea.  Well, what kind??  I need to know.  No you don’t.  Be quiet and drink the tea before I lose my calm on you and go off all Scorpio style in this nice place.  She then got out her PHONE.  Yes, her phone, and proceeds to play on it.  NUMBER one rule of yoga is there are NO cell phones in yoga.  Everyone knows this.  Everyone.  Except her.

Unfortunately, I left restorative yoga more tense than I should have.  I allowed another person’s behavior and energy to seep into my space.  I don’t have time for that in my life.  I just don’t.  So I went blessedly alone the next week.  And again last night.  What I learned was that each week, Lauren works on a different part of the body in the poses.  If I had given up because of my mind, body, or embarrassment of the above, I would not have known that.  I am working hard on shifting my focus.  There are things we can’t control, but when you get to your mat, control what you can.  Slow down you mind, focus on the breath, drop the chatter in your head, and let the others melt away.  It is your journey and yours alone.  No one can do this for you.

I truly appreciate this class as it feels like it goes at your own pace.  Some of us use more bolsters, blankets, or props to get in the pose and get the best benefits.  It does not matter.  This is truly a class to teach you to slow down.  Namaste.

 

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Transcendental Tuesday…

Practicing Trancendental Meditation is said to be a good way to relieve stress.  The TM technique involves the use of a sound or mantra and is practiced for 15–20 minutes twice per day.  For example, let’s say you are dealing with people who just don’t get “it”.  Whatever it is.  You can close your eyes while speaking to them and begin your meditation.  I had to do this today when speaking with someone who deals with medical things.  I had to explain that genetic conditions such as mine do not have magical “cures”…that basically that’s why the gene was inherited.  If it did have a cure, I think I’d know about it by now as I would love to stop having pints of my blood taken every 6 months.  So, in order to deal with this yet again, I had to go to my happy place.  My place where my mantra was “Don’t slap the stupid people. Ohmmmmm.  They can’t help it.  Ohmmmmmm.  They don’t know any better.  Ohmmmm.”  Repeat.

I have had to go to this place often in the last 17 years.  When I then had to call the next doctor’s office to schedule my phlebotomy, the nurse said they needed to do more blood work.  I said, no actually, you don’t.  I just had blood work done, and the doctor told me if I was experiencing problems to call back and make a phlebotomy appointment.  So, here I am experiencing “problems”, calling you to get things straight.  Well, this went on for a while because she insisted he said I had to have more blood work done before I could have my pint taken.  I calmly explained that it appeared I was breaking out in porphyria bumps and that most people with hereditary hemochromatosis don’t have the two fold warning system like I do to let them know it is time for the vampire visit.

By the time I was done with this, I had worked myself up again.  I called my husband and my mom to vent because it’s either that or throw things…or cry.  Which gets me absolutely no where.  Then I am reminded of other people who are worse off and I feel bad about getting upset, but it can’t be helped.  I thought back to my earlier conversation with a lady I just met.  Her daughter has one of my conditions, fibromyalgia, and can’t work, get out of bed some days or drive a car.  I am one of those people who really tries to think of other people when I feel bad.  I really do.  It makes me want to push harder to show these people that life can be lived.  There is hope.  There is a way out of this, and we just have to believe.  Sometimes, we are going to have to put up with the “stupid” things in our lives.  Whatever that is.  Irritants, things that challenge us.  Make us feel frustrated, mad, or ready to throw in the towel. Push past that to the other side.  You can do it.

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