828-333-5087
Hydration’s Role in Healing

Hydration’s Role in Healing

Water affects every system in the body.

When we see muscle tissue that’s slow to heal –or the healing mechanism doesn’t spark in the body quite as well– often the culprit is dehydration.

 

Water helps keep the the muscles pliable. The muscle has a more difficult time healing itself after treatment if the person is not properly hydrated. If your body is well-hydrated before acupuncture the healing potential is heightened. It usually takes 2-3 days to become fluid. Many of us are chronically dehydrated.

Water helps keep the blood alive and healthy. Without water the blood gets sticky.

The body’s tissues are what holds the water in the body. The way to get the water into the tissues – here’s the secret: Drink a bunch of water and then stretch. If you sit still it will go right through you, if you move it will go into the the soft tissue of the body – the muscles and the fascia.

If the fascia is dry, the conductivity and communication in the body is hampered.

Whenever you have enough water in the fascia system – the connective tissue– the body can work more efficiently at immunity, tissue healing (muscle repair), oxygenation, brain function, and heart health to name a few.

Hydration goals: Drink half your body weight in ounces per day – for example 140lbs = 70 ounces water per day.

The quality of water is important. Taste and cleanliness are paramount  (no chlorine or fluoride) opt for local spring water.

Drink mindfully,  good water.

Read more about healthy hydration techniques in article 4 Ways to Make the Most Out of Water.

The Master Tonic for Immune Support

The Master Tonic for Immune Support

The Master Tonic: Your Homemade Antiviral, Antibacterial, Anti-Inflammatory Powerhouse.

Now is the time to make this simple but powerful antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory remedy for the coming cold and flu season. It is known most commonly by the name “Master Tonic” and it is very easy to make.

 

This homemade medicine is an anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-parasitic remedy that you can make in your own kitchen. We made it  this month so that we are ready to keep our immune system strong when the season (and weather) changes.

This works as a preventative ally, keeping your immune system strong and it also works to help rally your immune system if a cold or flu strikes.

Remember: It’s best to use fresh,organic ingredients whenever possible. Especially, when making medicine.

Below are the health benefits of each ingredient. You will find the recipe at the bottom of the page.

The Health Benefits of Horseradish Root

  • Antibacterial
  • Antiviral
  • A natural Antibiotic
  • Anti-parasitic
  • Anti-anemic 
  • Helps relieve bronchitis and cough
  • Strengthens the immune system
  • Stimulates the production of white blood cells
  • High levels Vitamin C

The Health Benefits of Garlic

Best used in its raw or fermented form

  • Natural Antibiotic
  • Anti-fungal
  • Anti-inflammatory 
  • Antioxidant
  • Rich in phytoncides-such as allicin – helping  cure infections at a faster rate.

It’s best to chop the garlic and wait 15 minutes prior to utilizing/ eating/ cooking. This allows the health-giving enzyme reaction of garlic to occur. 

The Health Benefits of Tumeric Root

Curcumin is an incredible compound found in turmeric. It works synergistically with Black pepper which increases it’s bioavailability in the blood.

  • anti-inflammatory
  • Antibiotic
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antiviral- helps fight influenza
  • Protects the immune system 

Curcumin has become popular and effective anti-inflammatory but even more so it has played an important supportive role in the treatment of cancer

The Health Benefits of Ginger Root

Ginger is a widely recognized medicinal root across many cultures for thousands of years.

  • Powerful Anti- inflammatiory
  • Reduces pain
  • Helps alleviate gastrointestinal distress
  • Helps eliminate intestinal gas
  • Soothes the intestinal tract
  • Recent studies have shown promising reports of Ginger’s anti-cancer properties

The Health Benefits of Onion

  • Sulfur-rich assisting the body to detoxify
  • Anti-carcenogenic
  • Heart disease prevention
  • Immune bosting
  • DNA protection

The Health Benefits of Hot Peppers

  • Rich in capsaicin which protects cells against cancer
  • Regulate blood sugar
  • Anti-Inflammatory
  • Stimulate blood flow – helps relieve congestion associated with cold and sinus infections.

In this recipe we’ve used Jalepeño peppers because they were growing in our garden. However, Unripe green habaneros contain more Vitamin C than a serving of citrus fruit.

The Health Benefits of Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Antioxidant
  • Antimicrobial 
  • Probiotic -rich promoting a healthy intestinal tract
  • Boosts the immune system

Master Tonic

Make this Anti-Viral, Anti-bacterial tonic for home use. 

Keyword Cold, Flu, Health, immune, Master Tonic
Prep Time 30 minutes
Author Nicole Johnson, CHHC

Ingredients

  • 1 Part Fresh Horseradish Root
  • 1 Part Fresh Garlic diced
  • 1 Part Fresh Tumeric Root (or powdered turmeric if not available)
  • 1 Part Fresh Ginger Root
  • 1 Part Onions chopped then add to food processor
  • 1 Part Hot Peppers (jalapeño or other) diced with gloves on
  • 1-2 Parts Raw Unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 9 grinds Fresh Ground Pepper (works synergistically with tumeric)

Instructions

  1. Grate, dice or add to food processor each ingredient at a time and add to jar. 

  2. Fill mason jars of your choice 3/4 of the way full. 

  3. Add in Apple Cider Vinegar to the top.

  4. Cover with lids (if using metal lids add parchment paper so the vinegar does not react with the metal lids.

  5. Store in a place out of the sun. Shaking gently once per day  for two weeks, and then filter the Master Tonic mixture through a clean piece of cheese cloth or other, bottle and label.

  6. Can be stored in the pantry indefinitely.

  7. Take 1 or 2 ounces a day during cold and flu season, You can add raw organic honey if desired. Swish and then swallow. Don’t dilute with water.

    The dosage for the Master Tonic is 1 or 2 ounces, two or more times daily. 

    For an infection, 1 or 2 ounces taken 5-6 times a day will be suffcient. It can be used during pregnancies, is safe for children (use smaller dosesand maybe a dropper full with added honey). This is a non-toxic food.

How We Prepare and Hold the Treatment Space

How We Prepare and Hold the Treatment Space

Entering the treatment space is similar to entering a martial arts dojo and an old growth forest.

 

In a dojo, we enter with reverence and respect.

 We leave our prejudices and preconceived notions outside.

When we are open to possibility, nothing is impossible. 

Trust, integrity, and curiosity are values that are held in highest regard. 

We operate from Precautionary Principle – we protect the most vulnerable among us.* 

Each time we enter a dojo, we agree to leave the outside world behind. 

In the treatment space, we do the same:

Each time we enter, we leave the outside world behind. We invite you to do the same. This is your time, a time for healing. And you are the healer.

Chad applies moxa to an acupuncture point to bring warmth to the body

It’s how we enter an old growth forest.

We allow the sounds, peace and beauty to work on us. To infuse us with vitality, to refresh us, replenish us. We take this time for ourselves. We take this time to experience true healing.

 

We invite you to leave a fixed mindset at the door:

Please silence your cell phone and  leave religion and politics at the door. We are here to discuss you and your wellness goals. 

We welcome you with a growth mindset of unlimited possibility. This is your time. Welcome. 


How to Prepare for your Acupuncture treatment:

1. Avoid Caffeine 3 hours prior to your treatment. 

2. Be sure to eat before your treatment.

3. *Please wear a mask.

4. Drink plenty of water.

5. Practice deep breathing.

 

Breathing Technique: Creating a simple practice that you know by rote can help maintain lower stress levels, relieve anxiety and boost the immune system. This is helpful to start the day, practice 20 minutes or so before your treatment, or right before bed. Try this simple yet powerful 60% breathing technique.

Getting adequate, rest, hydration and supporting your stress response will go a long way in helping you heal. 

We're Here to Help. 828-668-5322

Call our office to find out more or schedule your appointment online.

Tune into Spring, the Wood Element, and Heal Anger

Tune into Spring, the Wood Element, and Heal Anger

Spring is the element of WOOD and the color GREEN.

The ancient Taoists (Prounounced “dao-ists”) looked to nature to understand the human body, mind and spirit. They were philosophers and we need to be clear, Taoism is not a religion. When we tune into the movement of the seasons, we reconnect with and maintain our vitality. Just as with our circadian rhythms, our seasonal rhythms affect our health. Eating with the seasons is an excellent foundation to thriving health.

Spring- Wood – Green, Liver,
Liver out of balance = Anger
Liver in balance = Flow

In Spring, Yang is Rising

Let’s look around, what do you see? Trees starting to leaf out, flowers begining their bloom, greens pushing up? This is YANG rising. This is the start of the great in-breath – the height of which is the heat and outward orientation of summer. Yang is rising, the rivers are flowing, the birds are chirping and making nests, we all come out of hibernation.

The LIVER is the organ associated with spring. If our liver is in balance we experience free flow of qi (energy, emotions). If our liver needs some support, we may be quick to anger, snap at loved ones, or experience a low slow simmer of anger. Also, referred to Liver Qi Stagnation. I suffered with this for years. It’s true. Part of this is constitutional, meaning I have a tendency towards this, my family has a tendency, essentially – lots of – um- venting. Living in the south has been a balm to my constitution. I deeply enjoy – and have learned from- the kindness and generosity of spirit I have met in this region.

One of the solutions to opening up the free flow of liver qi is to take an aimless walk. This is for real, and it works wonders at opening up the free flow of liver qi. There is also a wonderful Chinese Medicine herbal formula called, Free and Easy Wanderer. Also, very helpful. These work wonders in conjunction with acupuncture which will support your liver and it’s reflexes. Feel free to ask us more about these remedies.

Healing Foods

Foods to add in to your diet are – Greens, Greens, Greens. Greens impart, light, flexible energy to us. Bitter Greens and herbs, support the liver directly. Dandelion, Broccoli Rabe, and Nettles are especially helpful. Chickweed is growing abundantly, add this to your salads or smoothies. When working with the more bitter greens, please be sure to have them with plenty of healthy fat, it cuts the bitterness and adds a nutritional punch. Health fats would include  Avocado oil, coconut oil, ghee, grass fed butter, and for those who tolerate it- bacon fat. A wonderful tincture to support the liver is Milk Thistle.

But truly, any greens- the fresher the better. These new greens that sprout up are here to help us clear away stagnation. Here is a fantastic Nettles Pesto recipe that I love to make with Fresh Nettles every spring. I usually do a green juice cleanse and my spirit and my body feel lighter and more upbeat.

Helpful Stones

A wonderful stone for this time of year that would support the free flow of liver qi is Amazonite. Known by the ancients as “Heaven flowing into the river stone.” It is calm, tranquil and supports us.

Here are some other thoughts to help us tune into the beauty of Spring.

  • Young plants
  • Spring fever- is Yang Rising
  • Moved by nature – Emotions, awakening
  • Nature sings, puts on a show
  • Slough away the old, the dense
  • Joyousness and Cheer
  • Tending to the garden can bring joy and connection

As we align our hearts with Nature, we arrive more deeply into balance.

Interested in Acupuncture or Health Coaching? We're Here to Help. Schedule Now.

 or Call our office 828-333-5087​ to discuss your options.

Four Ways to Reduce Anxiety and Get a Better Night’s Sleep

Four Ways to Reduce Anxiety and Get a Better Night’s Sleep

In the clinic we’re seeing more and more people who are experiencing anxiety. Some have it during the day and others find they are waking during sleep. These times carry a great deal of stress for the body, mind, and spirit. Here are four ways to reduce anxiety and get a better night’s sleep.

Catnip Tea with Honey:

Catnip is a gentle nervine to humans and is know to promote restful sleep and release nervous tension. The honey supports the liver and it’s functions during the sleep cycle.

Milky Oats Tincture:

Milky Oats aids with chronic stress, replenishes the nervous system, and boosts mood and energy levels. Taken during the day to calm the nerves system down and take the  jangled edges off of the nerves.

CBD or CBD with Melatonin:

This supplement is an excellent sleep aid and supports the immune system as well. Inquire in the clinic.

Regular Mindfulness Practice:

Creating a simple practice that you know by rote can help maintain lower stress levels, relieve anxiety and boost the immune system. This is helpful to start the day, practice for 5 mins or less mid day, right before bed and can be most especially helpful when waking up at night with anxiety. Try this simple yet powerful 60% breathing technique.

 

We're Here to Help. 828-333-5087

Call our office to find out more or schedule your appointment online.

Three Essential Components to Staying Conscious, Mindful, and at Ease

Three Essential Components to Staying Conscious, Mindful, and at Ease

We are living through stressful times. It’s time we elevate our lifestyle to incorporate a foundation of health that will keep us healthy, grounded, and centered in our everyday lives. If we follow this three basic practices, we can come back to center as we navigate through our everyday experiences. If we get triggered, we can come back to center. With a simple daily practice we can bring these into our everyday lives helping to keep us healthy, our immune system ,strong and our spirit resilient. It’s what we need in these times.

The three essential components to staying conscious, mindful and at ease are 

  1. Breathing
  2. Hydration
  3. Sleep

Breath Deep, from the Belly

The breath is the Organizing Principle. Proper breathing allows the body to extract Qi (Chi) from the air just as we extract nutrients from food. When we practice mindful breathing we connect the brain and the heart with the kidneys and all the organs can communicate. We feed our life force.  Now more than ever, we need to recognize the shift from self-care to essential practice. 

A Simple Way to Begin.

  1. At night before sleep, while resting in bed, place one hand on the belly and one hand on the heart. 
  2. Take a deep cleansing breath and  exhale strong. We are ready to begin, 
  3. With your hands still in place, breathe in slowly into the abdomen, feel the belly rise. Inhale to 60% capacity. 
  4. Exhale long and slow. The exhale should be double the length of the in-breath. (Want to know why? In stretching we stretch deeper, we release on the exhale. In Martial Arts we kick or punch on the exhale. The action or the release happens on the exhale.)

As you practice nightly, you allow your body to come into the Parasympathetic state (rest & digest). This was considered self-care prior to 2020 and it is now essential. 

You can also watch this Video: Qi Gong Breathing: 7 Minutes to calm body and mind

Welcome, Good Water

Proper Hydration is critical for all of the functions of the body. When dehydrated, the fibers of the muscle look like a dry lake bed. They lose their conductivity. This makes pain feel worse and can hinder or delay recovery. Even if sub-clinical, dehydration can cause muscle pain and tightness. Even if you drink water regularly,  you can become dehydrated.

How much should I drink?

Everyone’s hydration’s needs are different. But here is a general idea from what The Mayo Clinic recommends:

Around 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men

Around 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for womenAn easy way to get your water in is to pre-fill your bottles of water for the day and make your way through them. Often we need electrolytes as well so as not to over tax the kidneys. Always be sure to drink clean, purified water without chlorine or fluoride. 

Rest Deeply

Now, more than ever we need adequate sleep. Life is stressful in a macro way, not just a micro way as it used to be. We are all affected by what’s happening in the collective, we need to sleep, to rest and to recharge our body, mind and spirit. Everyone’s sleep needs are different. Some need 8 hours, some need 10 hours. Experiment and see what helps you feel well-rested in the morning. 

See what bedtime works best for you. Often climbing into bed by 10pm allows for deeper rest even if reading for 20 minutes. For a good night’s rest, be sure that all cell phones are off and out of the room. Turn off the wifi in your home. Disengage from electronics, news and other stressful events 30min to 1hr before rest. Try some gentle yoga stretching with the lights low, drink some warm decaffeinated tea, practice deep breathing and then rest and repair. 

If you’d like support with a breath work daily practice, learning more about hydration or help with better sleep. Call us, we can help.

We're Here to Help. Schedule Now.

 or Call our office 828-333-5087​ to discuss your options.

Holiday Gift Preview

Holiday Gift Preview

Packaged Treatments with Products – Great for loved ones, someone new to acupuncture, or yourself!

We’ve been working hard to create quality value-added gifts for you and your loved ones this holiday season. In the coming days we will be officially rolling these out.

We are finalizing all the details right now – please contact us to get on the pre-sale alert list.

+ Back Pain / Back Health +

Support for chronic and acute back pain.

Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Herbal Bath Soak, Pain Cream, Plasters/patches, *Add-on Treatments Optional

 

+ Computer User Rescue +

At the computer all day? Come and get some overdue treatment support for eyes, head, neck, shoulders, brain and body.

Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Magnets for daily treatment, Shungite, Free and easy wanderer herbal formula, * Add-on Treatments Optional

+ Stress Less * Sleep More +

Need Some Serious Self Care? Now you can Stress Less and Sleep More

Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Sleep Supportive herbs, Rose Hydrosol, Lavender Essential oil, Lavender Chamomile Tea from Asheville Tea Co, *Add on Treatments Available

 

+ Cold, Flu, and Immune Support +

Come in for a deep immune boosting session and get everything to support yourself and family at home.

Includes: 90 min Treatment Session*, Home Moxa Set, Skin Brush, Gan Mao Ling Herbal Formula, Cold/flu tea, * Add-on Treatments Optional

Foot Pain Cure

Got foot pain? Arch issues? Plantar Fasciitis? Toes run amok? Come in and get support for your foot pain.

Includes 90 Treatment Session*, Silver Ball Foot Magnets, Foot soak – Sinew Relaxing Zheng Gu, * Add-on Treatments Optional

+ Chinese Medicine First Aid Kit +

Curated by Chad, this on the go kit has everything you need – take it camping, hiking, traveling and more. Details soon.

Gift Cards

Customize your own design or purchase a take home card in the clinic -these are available to purchase for any amount right now.

We're Here to Help. Schedule Now.

 or Call our office 828-333-5087​ to discuss your options.

Give Yourself a Break and Support Your Adrenals

Give Yourself a Break and Support Your Adrenals

It’s been a rough few years and we have all been -to varying degrees- in fight or flight. This raises cortisol and puts extra strain on the Adrenal Glands.

Here are some quick tips to support your healthy body and its myriad of functions:

  • Get plenty of rest – 8-10 hours of sleep, embrace naps, and scheduled downtime.
  • Hydrate – have you tuned into your water lately? Drink high quality H2O and plenty of it.
  • Support your Kidneys (the Adrenals and Kidneys are best friends) – do this by doing the above, drinking bone broth or vegan mineral broth, keeping warm, being chill.
  • Moxa & Acupuncture support the Kidneys and Adrenal function – they are the deepest layer, they are in charge of the will and in relationship to the heart spirit as well. A moxa and acupuncture treatment can support better sleep (goodbye insomnia), relieve anxiety, and support the body in keeping the parasympathetic response.

What is your stress level on a scale of 1-10?

Sometimes the first step is to realize you are operating at a high level of stress. Some folks feel like they are at a 4 when they’re really at an 11 on scale of 1 to 10. Take a moment to tune in and assess where you really are. Are there activities or habits you can let go of?

We are here to support you. Call to schedule an acupuncture treatment or a health coaching phone session.

 

We're Here to Help. Schedule Now.

 or Call our office 828-333-5087​ to discuss your options.

Rawkos! A Fun and Healthy Travel Food.

Rawkos! A Fun and Healthy Travel Food.

Here’s a healthy, tasty recipe that will bring into you in the summer mode. This is a popular favorite from our Seasonal Cleanse. It’s great food to travel with and requires NO COOKING. Rejoice the Rawko!  It’s like a taco but it’s raw – not raw meat – raw foods (means no cooking, more enzymes, more energy, packed with flavor). We’ll admit, it can be a bit of an odd concept at first but once you try them, you may just be pleasantly surprised.

 

 

Make the Wraps

  • 1 Bunch of collard greens* There is a misunderstanding that collards are bitter, not so! Pair them with a protein and a fat and eat them raw and your will be forever changed.
  • Rinse and de-stem – leaving 2 halves (depends on how many people are eating– figure 2-3 wraps per person)
  • Pat those dry

Sweet Cucumber Salsa

  • 1 apple – peeled, cored, diced
  • 1 cucumber – peeled, seeded, diced
  • 1 medium sweet yellow onion – diced
  • Parsley and/or cilantro – washed and diced
  • A few pinches of Himalayan or Celtic sea salt (these are quality high mineral salts)
  • Fresh squeezed lemon
  • Add all ingredients together, then add in salt and lemon – make sure it really gets on that onion! Toss, let sit.

Rawko “meat”

Why the non-meat tacos – er- rawkos? Because they are delicious. Because raw foods pack an amazing amount of energy and vitality, and because everyone loves new and exciting foods that make them feel good with no negative repercussions.  So here you go:

  • 1 -2 cups of raw organic walnuts (again, depending on how many people you are feeding)
  • 2-6 TBS of gluten free tamari (go easy on this — it can get real salty quick)
  • Add to a high speed blender or food processor and blend it up

Making Rawkos

  • Lay your collard wrap on a flat surface
  • Spread 1-2 tsp of the rawko “meat” onto the wrap length-wise
  • Add some salsa (this offsets the heavy flavor of the walnuts nicely)
  • Here, I added some sunflower sprouts for some more green and texture
  • Roll up and enjoy.

You can pre-roll these and eat them on a car ride — or pack the ingredients separately and take to go and assemble on site. Enjoy!

4 Ways to Make the Most Out of Water

4 Ways to Make the Most Out of Water

What is the best way to Hydrate? There are a lot of differing opinions out there (much like with food) and many of them are sound and good. So how do you know which is best for you?

The Answer: You have to tune in and find out.  Here are a few quick tips on the best way to make the most out of drinking your water.

1. Drink 2-4 cups with lemon upon waking.

When we sleep, our bodies are very busy repairing and detoxing. When we awaken, we are actually quite dehydrated. When you wake up squeeze a wedge of lemon into a glass of water and drink it. The lemon helps cleanse your liver and flush out toxins as the water hydrates you. My Nana used to do this every morning. It’s a terrific way to start hydrating and getting in your glasses of water. Then drink a tall glass of water.

2. Don’t drink water while you eat.

When we chew, we release digestive enzymes –digestion begins in the mouth. If we down water with our food, we dilute our digestive juices and hamper, digestion and absorption. Wait 20-30 minutes before or after you eat to drink your water — in between meals.

3. Drink throughout the day, and stop a few hours before bed.

Start first thing in the morning. Drink water when you’re hungry instead of reaching for a snack right away. See if water can quench your perceived hunger. Timing differs for everyone, find your optimum stopping point so that you may have a full night’s rest without waking for trips to the bathroom.

4. How much?

While it’s important to hydrate, how much water depends on what you’re eating. If you’re diet is rich with raw fruits and vegetables, you’ll find you need less water. If you eat a lot of cooked foods (the water cooks out) you’ll require more water by the glass. It’s important for you to be the judge. In the winter we tend to drink less water.  A basic rule of thumb is the drink half your body weight in ounces. Example: 140lbs = 70 ounces of water per day.  Keep in mind, too much water drinking can tax the kidneys.

Not enough water can cause dehydration, increased appetite, dry skin, hair, brittle nails, sluggishness, constipation and whole host of other things. There are many health professionals that believe the root of illness and disease is chronic dehydration. Our job is to tune into our unique body to find out what it needs. 

When I follow the steps above, I stay regular (who doesn’t want that?), my skin looks great, my energy flows, and I feel good. I do however, have to make a conscious effort to hydrate, the habit comes and goes for me. What about you?

Test out steps 1 -3 for a week and let us know what you find out. How much water are you drinking now? What are your water drinking goals?

Read about Hydration’s Role in Healing.

3-Steps to Make Real Change Without New Year’s Resolutions

3-Steps to Make Real Change Without New Year’s Resolutions

So, 2020, eh? With all of the restrictions and constrictions we’ve been experiencing this year, let’s be sure to be even more loving to ourselves than ever before. Winter is a time of going inward, of being in the deep recesses of pre-creation, the place of potential, the place of darkness, the womb of possibility – before the seeds get planted. It’s a time of dormancy, of quiet, of stillness. We reside now deep within the kidneys, the place of our essence.

This is a good time for REFLECTION

Resolutions are abrupt, sometimes harsh, often with fearful, judgmental, guilt-induced roots. Resolutions are willful, aggressive and single-minded (often setting us up for a backlash).

Reflection is based in awareness, it is open, observational, gentle, expansive and unlimited.

One of the things that we’ve learned about profound and lasting personal transformation is that the temptation to speed along and make swift, hacking changes, doesn’t stick. If you’re ready for it, the ride is longer, deeper and ultimately more rewarding.

This takes different tools. The fun part is, these tools are creative and they run counter to the speed, end-gaming and competitive energy that for so long has run rampant in our collective culture. NOW –brought to you by the big slow down of 2020– we are already somewhat naturally more slowed. This is a place for gratitude to live.

As a soothing concept for our child, we have often provided the parable of the transformation from caterpillar to butterfly. In 2019, we were the caterpillar. Currently, we are in the liminal space – the primordial goo of undoing and recreating. The liminal space is ripe with possibility, it is transformation itself. This cannot be rushed, But it can be leaned into. It’s been long, but we need a bit more time, let us not rush it as it cannot be rushed.

Often, our greatest challenge is in our “inner work.” Why do we get stuck? Why do we sabotage ourselves? Why do we hold ourselves up to such high standards? Are you your own worst critic?

If 2020 has shed a light on anything, it is that NOW is the time to heal ourselves. It’s time for us to emerge and feel powerful without shame. It’s time to stop playing small.

We may not be able to control the pandemic but we can affect personal change. The turn of the New Year is a good time to reflect, release, and dream big. It is NOT a time to feel guilty, or redouble our efforts and make resolutions (also known as more rules).

Prior to March 2020, many of us suffered from subtle levels of stress, anxiety, perfectionism and fear, much of it we could not put a name to.  Have you been able to see where your shadows are? Have you discovered new priorities?

How do we co-create personal change that is expansive and effective? How do we leap from where we are now, to where we’d like to be?

Try this simple technique to close out the old and bring in the new.

Step1 : Reflect. Take a few moments before the old year ends and the new one sweeps in and simply reflect. Grab a journal or piece of paper and take a few moments to just sit and gaze. How was your year? Yes, there are the overt traumas and challenges of the collective and personal journey this year – but do you have any silver linings?

What was really wonderful? What would you like to shed- that no longer serves you?

  • Make a heading at the top of the page and call it “Reflections on 2020”

  • Now list out “What I would love to keep”

  • Then list out “ What I am Ready to Let Go of”

 

Step 2: Dream your future open. Clear out the future by being in the present. Sit quietly for 5  to 10 minutes, relax and do the work of it. Imagine that you can shed all that doesn’t work in your life. Gather it  and simply compost it into the earth. Now… think about 2021. It’s clean, fresh, unencumbered. What do you want to place there? What do you want to occur?

  • On a NEW page start with the Heading, “Visioning and Creating 2021″

  • Be free, open, and expansive. Use what you’d love to keep and expand upon it until it feels good to you.

  • Some really enjoy the process of creating a Vision Board.

Really see it. Claim it. Draw it. Write it.  Paint it. Sing it. Drum it. Create it into being.

Step 3: Be creative and play. We are creators (you know, we make life…)  so create! You don’t have to be a formal artist… just do something to let the energy flow. What might set your heart or spirit free—even for 20 minutes?

Get into the FLOW state. Color, draw, finger paint, do an interpretive dance, make a silly hat, make something.  Seal your intentions with creative flow.  Thank yourself and go and enjoy the rest of your day.

Remember, you are the conductor of the complex melody of your life. You are a being with power beyond measure.  Use your power of reflection and awareness to create.

Have a beautiful celebration to close out 2020 and Happy New Year – welcoming in health, vitality, and possibility in 2021!