Hibernation Transformation

Mar 23, 2015

photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Hello!  How have you been?  I’ve been hibernating. Contemplating. Germinating. Transformating?  Like the plants and the animals do through the winter. Like the caterpillar does in a chrysalis.

And now spring is here and there is so much to share! An upcoming retreat, a bunch of workshops, the return of the Spring Detox Series, and more…

Since I began sending Nutricia’s Nusletter almost 10 years ago, a lot has happened. As in, so much that sometimes I can’t wrap my head around it. After going to health coaching school, I transitioned out of my full-time acting career, got a masters degree in herbal medicine, became an urban farmer and an urban bicyclist, started a line of herbal body products, became a yoga teacher, moved house 5 times, had some serious financial and spiritual crises, got my nutrition license, and did a lot of soul searching.

With so much change, and so many new learnings and identities to integrate, I got a bit overwhelmed. So the past 6 months have been about going inwards, to get some clarity on who I am, what I do, and what my ideal life looks like. To be honest, it wasn’t a deliberate stepping away – mostly I just felt exhausted and confused. That made it a challenge to send out an informative and supportive newsletter.  So, I did not write.

This winter, I began working with a life coach to help me find clarity and direction. (Sarah is fantastic and I highly recommend her!) As the snow melts, the longer days return, and spring begins to make itself known, I’m emerging from my hibernation with a new commitment to the things I love, and a renewed excitement for sharing them with you. I look forward to exploring the cycles of the earth and of the human body through herbalism, nutrition, and yoga, with a big splash of creativity – I’m returning to the theatre as well, performing in two upcoming plays.

Thanks for sticking with me. Perhaps the past 10 years have been particularly adventurous (a.k.a. turbulent) for you as well? (If you like astrology, we can discuss the Uranus-Pluto square, which has been going on for years and is only just wrapping up its influence over us all.) I hope you’ll find the time you need to transition to the next phase of your journey.

Please do let me know how this newsletter can serve you. What areas of holistic health make you curious or confused? Do you want recipes?  Tools?  Herbal secrets?  What? Drop me a line.

And I hope you can join me for a workshop or event very soon.

Top Ten: Practices For Grounding And Clarity

Here are some practical, simple steps for the days (or years) when too many ideas, too much energy, so much chaos is whirling around inside your head. The Buddhists call that “monkey mind” and it comes along with being human, by the way.

  1. Journal:write it down to get it out of your head. Here’s a free handout on journaling: [link expired, sorry]
  2. Meditate:simply sit for 2 minutes or more, and notice your breath. It helps me to count my inhale, and then make my exhale twice as long.
  3. Make a collage/ vision board:what images bring you a sense of joy and expansion? A Pinterest board works, too!
  4. Get wet:(maybe my favorite!) A shower can be a “do-over” for your day; a bath can force you to sit still for a few minutes, at least.
  5. Walk in nature:no computer screen, no cell phone, no cars.
  6. Hum/ tone/ chant:my friend singer Jai-Jagdeesh says, “the sound of your own voice is profoundly healing – to you.” You can hum one note and feel the vibrations in your body. You can play with sounds and notes. If you are a fan of yoga chanting, Krishna Das will be in DC next week. (I’ll be there.)
  7. Massage your feet with oil:in the Ayurvedic tradition, sesame oil is particularly grounding, but if you don’t have any, use whatever you have (yes, olive oil from the kitchen counts). Your feet are full of reflexology points and nerve endings; they’re considered the most sacred part of you in some spiritual traditions; they connect you to the earth, usually; and taking time to breathe and nurture your body connects you back to your core.
  8. Exchange active listening:perhaps you have a mentor/ coach/ healer/ loved one who listens deeply to you; if not, set up structure with someone you trust. Partner A gets to talk, uninterrupted, for 5 minutes. Followup/ clarifying questions from Partner B are allowed. Then you switch.
  9. Take a time-out:if a walk in nature isn’t an option, I take a time-out. Not a nap, but a break from sensory input. Pull the covers over your head and breathe for a little while.
  10. Notice how a statement feels in your body:if you are trying to find clarity about a specific issue, try out your options. Make a statement out loud, such as “I live in Paris,” or “I sold my house in Chicago.” Make note – do you feel a sense of peace and expansion? Or a sense of overwhelm? Experiment. Take notes. Breathe.

What grounds you and/or gives you clarity? Let me know.