Friday, August 30, 2013

Comfort is a Killer


noun: comfort
a state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint.

things that contribute to physical ease and well-being.

prosperity and the pleasant lifestyle secured by it.

synonyms: ease, relaxation, repose, serenity, tranquil

It is in our nature as humans to seek comfort, to shy away from the things that displease or make us feel uneasy. In the winter, we seek the comfort of warmth, and in the summer, a respite under a shady tree.  During times of sorrow we seek the comfort of trusted friends and family. Comfort is needed sometimes for survival, but it can be insidious in nature when we are not careful. We are conditioned to seek ease and flow in our lives to steer clear of things that hurt, but it is the need for comfort that can create the very dis-ease that we seek to avoid. 

My life has been comfortable to say the least: outright cozy and plush! But through a series of lessons in this master class called Life, I have learned that in seeking comfort and ease, I have often hindered myself from enormous growth. In my experience, during times when I allow myself to feel uneasy, I flourish the most. The choice to bend and stretch past my current capacity has often created amazing opportunities and rewards. Much like the strengthening of sinews pushed beyond their comfort zone, a new world of ability is opened when we allow ourselves the gift of discomfort. Discomfort is a gift that brings unrealized potential to all those who melt into its sticky, icky messiness. It's in the being in it that our power is realized.

There is a saying that I often think of when I go about my daily activities, be they small or large: "How you do anything is how you do everything." The lesson of this quote became clear to me while working out the other day. I was doing an exercise called a plank and had maintained the posture for my usual average time. (If you're unfamiliar with the plank exercise, it's essentially holding yourself in the top part of a push up.) It doesn't seem like much, but after a minute or two, it is killer! I was looking at my stopwatch, and as I was rounding the time when my muscles would usually give out, I noticed myself already preparing to get out of position. I was ready to give up at my usual point of discomfort. Well, I was feeling ballsy on this particular day and decided to hold out past my usual time; to my amazement, I lasted far beyond my usual record! This experience brought about a few thoughts. The first was: "Holy crap, I'm pretty much a super hero!" and the second: "How often have I chosen to give up just before creating a new personal best in other areas of my life?" 

If how you do anything is how you do everything, there must be countless times where things got uncomfortable, and instead of easing into the discomfort, I let go instead. Comfort is a killer, because it murders potential. What I was letting go of was not uneasiness or pain, but actually a chance to be a better version of my current self. With the insight gained from this particular experience, I've chosen to commit myself to getting uncomfortable as often as possible. The deliciousness that awaits on the other side of the creepy, crawly uneasiness is far too wonderful to pass up! 

So I ask, where in your life have you become a little too cozy? What things have you left unsaid or what opportunities have you left untaken? Stretch beyond your normal. What I hope for you, dear reader, is to have a life full of uncomfortable moments. I wish for you to be pushed beyond your personal best on a daily basis. Create miracles in your every action by going beyond what's easy. Comment below and share one way you plan to get uncomfortable. 


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Just Breathe

Breathing is something we've been doing on auto-pilot since the day we were born. There is no need to think about it we just do it. There is, I'm finding a wonderful power in breathing consciously. Take a moment and pay attention to your breathe. Are you taking little baby sips of air or are you bathing your lungs with oxygen from deep full breaths? 

Try a round of conscious breathing the next time you feel a bit off or disconnected:
Close your eyes, put one hand on your belly and the other on your heart. Take a deep breath in through your nose bringing the air in down into your belly. You should feel your belly extend with your inhale. When you feel that you can't take in any more air take an additional sip of air to fill your lungs to capacity.  Breathe out through your nose, breathing out every drop of air in you lungs. When you feel that you can't exhale anymore exhale just a bit more. Repeat this 3x and you are sure to press the reset button on your day. ENJOY!


Sunday, August 5, 2012

This Moment Is All There Is: A Reminder


 Be present. 
Be here. 
 NOW is the only thing there is. 
All is perfect. All is well. 
Enjoy THIS moment.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

I Don't Like Sushi and Other Life Changing Revelations

I went to one of my favorite little neighborhood restaurants today and ordered a Spicy Salmon Rice bowl. I was pretty excited about my lunch, because this place has pretty amazing food, but for some reason my intution told me not to get the Salmon bowl. "Not get the Salmon bowl? That's an odd request!" I blurted back to the little voice in my head. Don't worry, as this little spat between self and self stayed in my head. I proceeded to order the Salmon bowl anyway. I sat down and waited for my sure to be tasty meal to be served to me. Fast forward a few moments and the server set a yummy looking bowl in front me. I grabbed my fork to take a bite, and within the a few seconds of my first chews, I realized, "Hey, I don't like sushi!"

You might think, "Big whoop, what's the life changing realization in that?" Well, let me tell you: I've probably been eating sushi and variations of it for about 15 years. I had it for the first time in high school with a friend. We thought we were being sophisticated and cool by enjoying such a culinary delight. I'm sure I've eaten sushi at least a hundred times between then and now, so what made this time different? I'm betting on my new-found commitment to be more authentically my SELF. I'm growing toward a place of true unfiltered self-expression, and these seemingly small epiphanies happen often. My lunch today reminded me of the things big and small I do or don't do because of what other people may think of me. I became aware of things I like because everyone else likes them. It's a bit hilarious that I'd been walking around with a food preference that my high school self acquired just because it was the "cool" thing to do. And it's absurd that I had been eating something that in hindsight I never really enjoyed. This little insight came packaged in a bowl of spicy salmon and rice. My aversion to raw fish gave me the priceless gift of self awareness.

What I hope this little peek into my food preferences does for you is bring an awareness into your life of the places big and small where you are not being your true self. Are you eating a food you don't really like, but eat it anyway because it's trendy? Do you work at a place that crushes your spirit because it's a good job with benefits? Are you not doing something you've always dreamed of because others might not approve? What are the areas in your life where that little voice in your head suggests another choice, but you often ignore it? My challenge for you ~ a double dog dare if you will ~ is to take heed the next time that voice whispers what may seem like an odd request. I am learning more and more that it has a rate of one hundred percent accuracy. The moments I listen to it I'm more than glad I did, be it about what's for lunch, or if a job is right for me or not. My wish for you is that today you make a commitment to be unapologetically YOU in all areas of your life! I'll keep you posted as to my journey in doing so; let me know what's going on for you in the comments section.


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Epicurean Adventures

 Is there anything better than a meal made from the freshest ingredients with your own two hands? I don't think so. That is why one of my favorite luxuries is a home cooked meal brimming with organic and local ingredients. I love going to the farmers market to see what lights a spark of culinary creativity in me. Sometimes I draw a bit of a blank but, one of my favorite websites always comes to the rescue. YumUniverse is the brainchild of Heather Crosby and is full of plant based yumminess. I always feel amazing after eating one of her recipes. My body loves me for it indeed.

Check out one of my favorite go to recipes from her site.
 Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Vegetable Lasagna « « YumUniverse™ YumUniverse™
This Vegetable Lasagna pictured above is mind blowing to say the least. I like to remix it with what's in season and looks tempting at my local farmers market. I encourage you to do the same.

You'll get to know me as the blog grows and you will see that I'm very curious in nature.
So, I've got a question for you my lovely:
What foods make your mouth and your belly happy?
I'm talking about the sinfully delicious things that have the added perk of flooding your body with nutrition.

 I hope you can come up with a food or recipe or two that does that for you if not check out YumUniverse and go on an epicurean expedition of your own. Please feel free to share your finding in the comments below.

 Remember Wellness is your birthright not a luxury. Gift yourself with food you love that loves you back!


Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Monday, July 30, 2012

A lesson from Louboutin

  There is a spiritual teacher named Bashar, who often speaks of following your highest excitement as a source for spiritual growth. This has been a thorn in my side, as I never saw many of the things that bring me joy as benefiting the planet in a very impactful way. But I recently came upon a quote that was a bit of a light bulb moment for me:
“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” ~ Howard Thurman
  These words resonated with my heart and were a partial inspiration for the creation of this blog. Another inspiration was Monsieur Christian Louboutin. Being a lover of beautiful things and shoes like many women, I find his shoes drool worthy to say the least! The man himself is an inspiration and example of what your life can become when you let your inner child take the lead. Below, you will find an interview with Monsieur Louboutin and I hope it inspires you like it inspired me.
  My question for you is: What is it that you love? What is your highest excitement? How can you bring that joy into the world? Could you imagine living on a planet that was full of people following their joy? I can, and the thought of it makes my heart burst with delight!

  I leave you with this thought. The next time you are out shopping and see something luxurious that you'd like to own but think may be a little too extravagant, remember Mr. Louboutin and know that the beautiful shoe, bag, dress, car was created out of someone's joy and highest excitement!


Welcome to the land of Conscious Opulence.

I'm a lover of spiritual growth and the finer things in life. For some time, I thought that the spiritual and material worlds could not exist in harmony. The purpose of this blog is to prove that they can. Often, I thought I was somehow less of a spiritual person because I liked nice things. I believe now that that couldn't be farther from the truth. I strive for a life of non-attachment while enjoying beauty in all its forms. What you can expect from this lifestyle blog are tips for living a life of Conscious Opulence. I hope to inspire you to live a life full of wellness, growth, and luxury with health and beauty tips, recipes, and peeks into my own journey of spiritual growth and much more!