Happy International Day of Yoga

How did you celebrate International Day of Yoga?

My community offered free yoga classes all day at the pedestrian bridge overlooking the Wabash River today.

I was so happy to greet the morning, sharing Sun Salutations with others.

To Your Health!

~V

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Grow through what you go through.

When something (bad, unexpected, concerning etc) happens, you always have the choice to either let it define and/or destroy you or you can let it strengthen you.

Sometimes things out of our control that we can not change, end up changing us. 


To Your Health!

~V

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For going out, I found, was really going in.

I’ve always loved that quote by John Muir. 

Today, some news effected me greatly. I was feeling down, and defeated and just an overall sense of gloom – it’s easy to say we’ll accept the things we can not change but, actually accepting…

I knew I couldn’t just sit and dwell. I needed to connect with my highest self by being in nature and with my gentle friend, Bear.


Our walk in the woods along the Wabash river gave me time to pause and reflect – to breathe in deeply and listen to my inner voice, trust the direction I’m going and, stay true to my path. 
To Your Health!

~V

victoriapardue.com

It’s All About ME! *Self Care * Tips To Take It Beyond Mothers Day

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How much time do you set aside for self care? While studying to become a Holistic Health Coach at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition ,self care was one of the first topics we discussed. Yes, even before we went into the details of nutrition, fitness and more.

I’m dedicated to being mindful of Primary Food as part of my lifestyle, which focuses on Quality Relationships, Physical Activity, Career Satifaction, and a Spiritual Practice as core elements to overall wellbeing. All four equal self care.

What’s self care, you ask? To me, it means taking the time to do things that are good for your body, mind and spirit. Because, it’s true, if you’re not happy & healthy on the inside, you are definitely not going to be happy & healthy on the outside. It’s just how it works!

Some of My Favorite Ways to Practice Self Care

Deep Breathing, Meditation, Prayer

Set aside a quiet space, and time in your day where you can sit in silence and tune inward. Deep breathing and focused concentration slow down the brain waves and make them more organized. This helps us to have presence, peace of mind and a practice of gratitude. If giving thanks is part of your practice, your inner light will shine!!

Sleep, Sleep, and more Sleep!

Sleep makes you feel better, but its importance goes way beyond just boosting your mood or banishing under-eye circles.
Adequate sleep is a key part of a healthy lifestyle, and can benefit your heart, weight, mind, and more.

Eat Nutrient Rich Foods

This does not mean adhering to a strict or unchanging “diet”. It means eating in a conscious, simple way that is also more broadly varied. Try experimenting with fresh and colorful fruits and vegetables for a feel-good, clean meal.
The foods you eat become your blood, affecting the quality of your cells, tissues, organs, and your mind

Hydration

It’s no surprise that drinking enough water affects your health. Backache, headache, fatigue, and digestive problems are all linked to dehydration. Understanding the significance of proper hydration will help to advance your health.

Move Your Body

Involve your whole body. Ditch the gym and exercise outside in the fresh air whenever possible. Stretching and deep breathing are vital for health.Walking, swimming, bicycling, and gardening are excellent.Meditative exercises such as yoga or tai chi are both gentle and effective.

Spend Your Time and Energy with Supportive People

Limit and cut toxic relations. Explore forgiveness. If something is not working, it’s time to change directions. One of the biggest lessons I learned was that trying to make something happen is counterproductive. A rejection is just a re-direction in life. Whether that is a job or relationship or anything for that matter, something even better is on the way. Believe that, and surround yourself with others who do too!
When I make loved and trusted ones a priority, I deepen my ability to surrender and let go of things/people that my heart isn’t aligned with. Spending time with positive people allows you to give and receive *vital for wellbeing!

Loving Touch,Massage,Orgasm

That’s right, I said it! I mean it too. You know that old adage, an apple a day?Well it applies here too. As long as you feel safe, empowered, loved, respected, and sexy. Besides increasing a strong body/mind/spirit connection, we benefit from touch, massage, loving connections, and especially orgasm on the physical, spiritual and emotional level.
Every loving couple should enjoy the rejuvenating effect of sensuality and sexuality – all of which affects marriage, commitment,emotions, diet,career,and social life etc…
Those who want cookies and ice cream all too often may be craving a different type of sweetness. We can eat an awful lot of green leafy veggies and not get anywhere near the healing effects that come from having great sex!

Use A Health Coach

Why could you benefit from a Health Coach? Making changes necessary to support your health can be a challenge – making them last can be even more difficult.
I work with busy men, women and families to achieve and/or advance health and wellbeing goals by providing do-able practices. I’m here to energize, promote, and council you to reach and maintain meaningful changes in diet and lifestyle.
Visit my Contact/Services page

I also recommend reading this article Why Self Care Isn’t Selfish to get more comfortable with idea of self care.

Ahhhh, simplicity! Give your body what it wants – Good Food, Good Water, Good Air, Good Exercise, Respect and Love.

To Your Health!
~V

To Err Is Human, To Forgive Is Divine * Mediation * LET GO Toxic Ties – Find Your Path To Forgiveness

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It has been said, “To err is human, to forgive is divine.”

There is great truth to this and with Easter upon us, it brings up a potpourri of thoughts, feelings, and images, depending upon your belief and upbringing.

This time of year when Spring temperatures encourage colorful sprouts to push through the soil, it’s a reminder to me that rebirth and renewal are happening now – right before our eyes. Easter means different things to different people.

For me it is a season of hope, renewal and rebirth. It is a season of new beginnings, and a time to refocus and readjust our lives. In addition, this time of year is also a reminder that in order for new things to be born, old things must die. Death and rebirth.

This is a spiritual thing that can only be understood in the deepest part of our inner beings. And that brings me to reflect on forgiveness.

Forgiveness, it’s root, is really about judgment.

We either feel victimized – wronged somehow by another, or vis-à-vis, someone feels an injustice brought on by us. It can get personal. It can feel like our values are threatened. It doesn’t feel good. It down right hurts and It Is NO GOOD For You!

Soooo, what to do? How do you FORGIVE in a situation when you’re not very likely to reconcile or receive an apology.?
Maybe not ever.

The inability to really forgive is often due to a false concept that “forgetting is forgiving”. Forgetting is NOT forgiving. To be sure, if we forgive we will forget as a result. But the reverse is not true: forgetting is not forgiving–it is denial.

If we attempt to achieve false forgiveness by deliberately putting out of mind the offense, we might be fooling ourselves and others that we have forgiven. But all of the emotions and hurt are still there – only held back by force of will that keeps one in denial.
But then we see “that person” again and all the bitterness and pain rise up again within us. Or, in the off moment -when such mental confusions cannot be maintained – we catch ourselves feeling vengeful or angry, then we really see just how deep and effective this sort of forgiveness is.

The Bible wisely teaches; Jn 2:9 (Wey) Any one who professes to be in the light and yet hates his brother is still in darkness.

Denial is merely a delusion: flimsy, fake, and shallow.

Forgiveness is real: solid and deep. It is not an avoiding of the truth, but a dealing with it squarely, however painful.

Man’s Search For Meaning author, Viktor Frankle’s prompt regarding forgiveness,” Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom” gives us the confidence that we do have a chance at inner reconciliation. We hear all the time, and we know already that to forgive we should “Let go” , “Move on” , “Find peace” , etc… and that is true, But HOW exactly ?!?!

I don’t have THE answer – sorry- but, I can share what I’ve learned (through trial and error) as I explore forgiveness.

It’s a process.

It’s about self-care/loving yourself.

It improves your life.

Here is a meditation, recommended by my Yoga Instructor and friend of nearly 20 years, Mary Arnold – it helped me move on, and forgive a toxic situation.

Cutting Ties photo courtesy of Kibru Senbetta  www.facebook.com/kibrusenbettastudio
Cutting Ties
photo courtesy of Kibru Senbetta
http://www.facebook.com/kibrusenbettastudio

I call upon the Holy Spirit (or whatever “source” you wish to call strength from) to cut, loosen, and let go of all psychic ties and karmic bonds between myself and _____________.

These ties are now lovingly Cut, Blessed, Lifted, Healed, Released, and completely Let Go….layer by layer.

Thank You God. And so it is.

To Your Health!

~V

Nature-deficit disorder: a reduced awareness and diminished ability for adults and children to find meaning in the life around them, due to a reduced amount of interaction with the natural environment.

Shades State Park, Indiana
Shades State Park, Indiana

I know you’ve heard it before, “Fresh air will do you good”? But it now also makes sense scientifically. A surge of studies strongly suggest evidence that we can be happier, healthier, and smarter if we weave more nature into our lives.

Studies are proving a link between the outside and your insides, and that the best mind-body medicine is right beyond your front door.

For millions of years, humans depended on nature for just about everything, including food, shelter, and the regulation of sleep cycles, says M. Sanjayan, Ph.D., lead scientist for The Nature Conservancy. “Nature guided us in a very direct way,” he says. “But in the past thousand years, that started shifting; in the past 50, it has really shifted. And that the sudden absence of nature from our lives could throw our well-being way off-kilter.” In fact, the modern way of living, complete with loads of sitting and indoor time, has given rise to poorer health.

Other research suggests that rising rates of allergies and autoimmune disorders might be caused, in part, by less exposure to healthy bacteria found in nature. Still more science has linked reduced exposure to nature to higher risk for obesity, cancer, heart disease, anxiety, and depression.

Basically, going outside has become an option. It’s not an option. It’s a non-negotiable. A cure for stress – not to mention a host of other ailments – might lie a simple walk.

Recently a Women’s Health survey, “Health Benefits of Nature,” found that (women) who felt too stressed were more likely than non-frazzled women to spend a free day curled up on the couch. Worse, when stressed women actively try to relax: 54 percent plunk themselves in front of the TV, 44 percent eat, and 31 percent have a glass of wine; only 26 percent head out for a walk in the park.

The “Health Benefits of Nature” survey, mentioned above also revealed that “Most women already understand that nature is good for health” and 73 percent wish they could spend more time outside. The surveys notes the mounting excuses as: Women are too intimidated by too-hot or too-cold weather (53 percent), too busy (44 percent), or too comfortable hanging out at home (22 percent).

Women aren’t exclusive to a rise in stress and poor health symptoms due to lack of time outdoors. For more on “Nature Deficiency” and the effects on our children and youth, check out this National Geographic interview with Richard Louv, the author of the bestsellers Last Child in the Woods (2005) and The Nature Principle (2011) at
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/06/130628-richard-louv-nature-deficit-disorder-health-environment/

I can’t stress enough, Nature is a powerful protector of your body and mind! You can start small;

•Sit outside for 10 minutes a day – no excuses here! Even better, meditate outdoors for 10-20 minutes.

•Hang up your car keys – If you can walk instead to run an errand, do it

•Schedule catch-ups around walks – Wine bars are so tempting. But for a fun change schedule dates and catch ups with friends around walks or activities outdoors.

•Build it into your kids routine – at our house we have technology free time, we go on day hikes, fish, camp or swim in our nearby creek. Get out there and play with your kids too! Climb trees, get dirty, be a big kid.

•Plant a garden – Whether it is in pots or in the ground get out there and get some plants growing.

•Eat outside – Obviously this is easiest in summer but if you can cook a healthy homemade meal, light a few candles and create a romantic connection outdoors with your partner. A win-win!

Kind of makes you want to get outside, like, immediately. Right?

~V

Is Money The Root Of All Evil? What’s Your Relationship With Abundance?

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Let’s face it: money is the thing that stresses us out the most! The Bible teaching “The love of money is the root of all sorts of injurious things” – 1 Timothy 6:10 is a commonly accepted attitude. While I agree that the myth that money buys happiness and security is deceptive, we also have to care for ourselves and our family. And we do deserve happiness and comfort. An unhealthy view of money can lead to a scarcity (negative) mentality. The scarcity mentality makes you feel like there isn’t enough to go around.

We have to have money to live and the truth is, how you approach money – your attitude on abundance – matters a great deal. It affects the quality of other relationships in your life too.

It’s important to be clear on your ideas about money so that you do not create blocks for yourself.

So how do you begin to shift from scarcity to abundance?

It’s not about making more; it’s about appreciating what you have. Shifting your relationship with money from contentious to loving will help reduce stress, and allow abundance to come into your life.

Start by asking yourself;

1. What are your earliest memories of money?

2. What were/are your parents’ views of money?

3. What do you enjoy about money?

4.What difficulty do you have around money?

I am offering to you, the Mantras (phrases of intention) I’m working with to begin to shift mind and heart – my attitude about money.

When spending:

• I release this money into the world, knowing that it will come back to me.
• There is more where this came from.
• I am supporting my community with this money, and I am also supported by it.
•I let this go and trust that I have all I need.

When receiving:

•I am thankful for this money, and I am grateful that it does not define me.
•I am grateful for all that I have and for this gift that will provide for me.
•I receive this as a gift, and appreciate all it’s value.
•I trust that I am provided with what I need.

Let go of a troubled past or attitude about money. Make time to form a healthy, balanced relationship with money by recognizing that you can and do have abundance and wealth.

~V

*Photo courtesy of Kibru Senbetta Studio
http://www.facebook.com/kibrusenbettastudio
http://www.flicker.com/photos/kibrusbrainfood/

*BLENDED* Forgiveness,Moving On,Letting Go, and Ho’oponopono (hop a wa wa WHAT!?!?)