Recent Episodes

Why one-size-fits-all approaches to wellness routines may not work for everyone

When you think of meditation, you likely think about someone sitting down on the floor, legs crossed, eyes closed, hands resting on their knees, breathing deeply and looking calm and relaxed.
But what if meditation didn’t have to look that way? What if all of the typical self-care practices could be adapted to what works for you, not what everybody else seems to be doing?

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The typical approach to boundaries – you know, the one that’s all about telling people what you need and then washing your hands of the outcome – might not be serving us as well as we think.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t set boundaries – boundaries themselves are incredibly helpful and necessary if we want to create more calm in our life. 

But how we set the boundary is almost as important as the boundary itself.

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an image of a storm with the words "What to do when you're feeling overwhelmed" written on it

I never used to be the kind of person that would get anxious or overwhelmed. I used to be proud of that and think it was a skill especially when I was working as an ICU Registered Nurse and things were going sideways that day.
Turns out it was dissociation, aka a coping mechanism from trauma.
What can I say, hindsight’s a jerk sometimes.
Now, the truth is I get very anxious, not just my OCD anxiety disorder, but also just generalized anxiety. I think it’s kind of wild sometimes how creative my anxious brain can be, and how clear it can make the most awful, worst-case what-if scenarios feel so possible and so real.
It’s really easy for the anxious part of me to start drumming up feelings of overwhelm because I can convince myself that I’m not able to cope with whatever my anxious brain or perfectionism have built up. But anxiety is just a friend of mine now, welcome to stay here as long as they need.
Overwhelm, though, that’s a red-flag warning sign for me that I’m heading down the road to burnout.

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Hindsight’s a jerk sometimes.
You know, that moment when you look back at an experience and now you see the red flags and the warning signs…
… or the hindsight that makes you aware of what things you could have done differently to prevent life from going as sideways for you as it did.
Of course you didn’t notice all of these things in the moment because…well who knows why?
Over the past five and a bit years of learning how to embrace my chronic illnesses and disability, hindsight has shared seven specific lessons that I wish I knew before all of this started.
Would these things have prevented my body from breaking in the epic way that it did? Maybe. Maybe not.
But either way, these seven things would have made this experience a lot easier, so I wanted to share them with you because I don’t think you need to have a chronic illness or a disability to benefit from these seven skills.

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When people talk about regulating emotions as a highly sensitive person, they often use the pot of water heating up on the stove analogy. In this scenario, by suppressing your emotions it’s like you’re trying to hold down the lid on this boiling pot of water, but eventually the pressure from the steam gets to be too much and it pushes out in a little burst.
I don’t like this analogy though because it seems to only speak to the emotions we typically label as negative. But if we truly want to honour ourselves as a highly sensitive person, then we need to feel all of our emotions.
So instead of thinking of it as a boiling pot of water, I like to think of it as holding onto apples. Find out what I mean in this episode.

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finding the balance between masculinity and femininity

A little while ago, a client of mine shared that they were at odds with themselves because they didn’t feel ‘masculine enough’ and that they operated ‘too much in the feminine’ energy. But at the same time, they didn’t want to be caught up in the culture of toxic masculinity either. They noticed that I had a Yin Yang symbol in one of my tattoos and asked what I thought about the idea of finding a balance between the masculine and the feminine.

Because I believe in the power of words, I told them, “Instead of talking about masculine and feminine, let’s talk about the Inner Warrior and the Inner Poet.”

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how I began decolonizing my yoga practice

Yoga has absolutely changed my life, but not solely from the mat based asana practice. However, when I was first introduced to yoga that’s all I knew it to be! Yoga was where you went to feel calm, stretch and maybe get stronger depending on the class that you signed up for. Only after completing my yoga teacher training and teaching for a while did I encounter the complexities of Westernized yoga, which led me to question my role in perpetuating cultural appropriation. As my beloved practice crashed down around me, I was left to navigate the intersection of spirituality as an atheist, privilege as a disabled white woman, and authenticity in my desire to honor the true essence of yoga. This is a story of evolution, reflection, and the pursuit of truth.

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Letting go of resistance, mental health, human being not a human doing

Have you ever had a moment where it feels like a part of the authentic version of you just fell into place?
I just had another moment like that this past week, and it shifted a lot of things for me. All the way from sudoku and jigsaw puzzles on my phone, to how I view mental health medications for myself.
In a recent session with my therapist, she told me something which I already have heard a thousand times. She said “Remember you’re a human being not a human doing.”
I found it so frustrating because I felt like I was already doing that…
Kind of…
Mostly…
Maybe…
Okay, so not really.

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Three Little Birds - the power of changing anxiety's what if's in to even if's

I’m a few weeks into the Exposure Response Prevention (ERP) for my OCD, which I’ve talked about in the last few posts, so if you’re curious what that’s all about check it out here and here. Basically it’s a way to lean into the anxiety, rather than do something to try and calm it or make it go away.
Turns out this is especially helpful with OCD because my obsessive thoughts only get more and more intense (and creative) the more I try and make the anxiety go away.
It’s been a really interesting learning experience for me for how I manage all of my anxiety, not just the OCD related anxiety, and it really came to a whole new level of clarity for me last week.

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