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  • Metta Meditation + Things I'm Grateful For

    Metta Meditation + Things I'm Grateful For

    In yoga class last night, 
    The flow was good. Very good.
    But the message was even better.
    And the timing was perfect.
    Brittni led us through a loving-kindness meditation.
    Metta meditation.

    Not familiar?

    The Greater Good Science Center, out of the University of California Berkeley, describes loving-kindess (or "metta") meditation as the simple practice of directing well-wishes towards other people

    And also yourself.

    It's a simple, yet powerful way to feel happier, pump up the positivity, get yourself on a trajectory of growth, feel more connected, and even change the way you approach life! 

    Pretty awesome, eh? 

    How does it work? You simply direct kind, loving feelings to yourself, others (those you love, as well as those you've been feeling tension/negativity towards), and finally, all beings everywhere. It only take a few minutes to do, and it's something anyone can do - including the little ones!

    Check out this awesome video to get a better feel for how this works!

    I'd gone into class feeling some tension about something (doesn't matter what) someone (doesn't matter who) had said earlier this week. And the metta meditation was exactly what I'd needed.

    It left me feeling peace, ease, perspective, compassion, and love for the person who'd been weighing on my mind. It felt like a weight had been lifted: Free from the negativity and the tension. Ready and able to move on. 

    And that's where the gratitude comes in.

    To me, gratitude is like a reality check.
    Yeah, things may be crazy at times.
    Life may feel really hard.
    And it may seem silly to stop and think about what you're grateful for. 

    But I've found that, especially in those most challenging moments, when we take the time to focus on what's good in our lives (love, friendship, being brave, overcoming fear, telling your story, time to listen, being heard, sitting in the sunshine, making a big change, a hug, a hand, doing what's right), something incredible happens.

    A shift.
    And a lightness. 
    And over time, it grows. 


    So I invite you to pause for a moment today.
    Or even a few times today!
    To direct some metta at yourself, the people in your life, and the world. 
    Lord knows we can (all) always use more loving-kindness.

    Maybe even start a list!

    I'll kick things off with 5 big things I'm feeling especially grateful for this morning:

    • Love in my life.
      From family and friends.
      People who lift me up, cheer me on, and genuinely care.
      I am so grateful for you.
    • Community.
      My tribe.
      And there are many, actually.
      This one is forever shifting and expanding.
      But the magic that happens when you connect with people who "get" you is hard to describe. 
      And I am so grateful for this.
    • Meaningful work.
      The opporunity to do soemthing that lights me up and makes me feel alive.
      With food, natural health, self-care, supporting, educating, empowering.
      But most of all: People
      For this I am massively grateful.
    • My Health.
      The ability to breathe clearly, move freely, dance, stretch, run, relax, travel, and snuggle.
      These were not always things I could easily do.
      And I cherish them now more than ever.
    • And even: The Hard Stuff
      Because it's shaped and molded me into who I am today.
      It's an excellent teacher.
      I am stronger, clearer, and more confident in who I am and what I'm capable of because of the challenges.

    And you? What are you thankful for right now?


    Happy Thanksgiving, dear readers!

    Wherever you may find yourselves today,

    May you be happy,
    May you be healthy,
    May you be safe,
    May you be peaceful,
    And may you be at ease.

    Katie
    XO

  • Yogi Tea

    Yogi Tea

    Yogi Tea

    I have a feeling you're going to love making (and sipping) this warming, soothing yogi tea. I first learned how to make yogi tea during Culinary Nutrition School. It's believed to strengthen the immune and nervous systems, energize the body, and calm the mind. I've also read that it helps to purify the blood, lungs, and circulatory systems - and cleanse the liver. It's a warming, spicy blend of cardamom, peppercorns, ginger, clove, and cinnamon, sweetened with a touch of local raw honey.

    Ingredients:
    2 quarts (8 cups) water
    5 sticks cinnamon
    1 tablespoon whole cloves
    1 tablespoon whole cardamom seeds
    1/2 tablespoon whole peppercorns
    1 inch ginger root, freshly sliced
    almond milk, optional
    raw honey, optional

    Instructions:

    • Place all ingredients in a medium-sized pot
    • Simmer for 20-30 minutes
    • Serve alone or with a touch of milk and raw honey

    Note:
    You can simmer much longer (2-3 hours, even) if you like, but 20-30 minutes will do the job.

  • TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING?

    TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING?

    This morning the sun was shining. I wanted to get up, enjoy the morning, take advantage of the day.

    But I couldn't. I was tired. Feeling low on energy. Needing a break. Needing to sleep.

    We've been traveling a lot lately. And work has been a killer. St. Louis two weekends ago. Smoky Mountains the week before. Upstate New York a few days ago. And next week: Southeast Asia. Hospitals, family, friends, road trips, and airports have drained me.

    In a good way. Of course. 

    Time has flown by. In between all this goodness, while I should have been resting, I was working on my website, listening to lectures, and trying to write. I wanted to submit an original piece for a new publication. One I was so excited to have the chance to be a part of. 

    But something was wrong.

    Every time I sat down to write, I fell asleep. 

    Beautiful places, wonderful weather, and ridiculously generous people. It's a lot to be thankful for. Overwhelmingly so. So much to write about. But nothing left to fuel my creative juices.

    Now I'm in recovery mode. I'm focusing on the moment. The present. The now. One thing at a time.

    My brain was fried. I missed the deadline. And I was sad. Super bummed.

    But for now, I know what I need to do.

    Sleep. Drink water. Make green breakfast smoothies. Do yoga. Be with my people. Echinacea, B-12, Ashwagandha. Probiotics. Get my immunity, energy, adrenals, and gut in order. Stop, literally, and smell the flowers. Listen to my favorite music. Appreciate everything. Stay grateful and grounded. Quality over quanitity, right?

    There are so many ways to recover from stress and overwhelm. Sometimes its from a crazy day at work. Sometimes terrible news. Sometimes it's just too much of a good thing - a pretty great problem to have, I must say. I am so grateful.

    Over the next few months, I'll be traveling, graduating from Nutrition School, and working - in the hospital and on my health counseling biz. I can't wait! But I'm keeping a list of all the things that will help me along the way - how I can practice extreme self-care to keep my mind, body, and spirit happy and healthy. 

    What's on your list? Share your favorite and best suggestions below. Let's do this together. XO