Tag Archive | confidence


What is it about demolition? This is what’s going on next to my home. I was almost late for work this morning as I watched the house next door being torn down, staring in fascination as the excavator made the walls seem as flimsy as paper. This house has been an eyesore as long as I’ve been here, not even worth fixing. I don’t know what happened to the old lady who lived here. I used to hear her TV on at all hours of the night, hear her calling to the stray cats she fed. Perhaps she moved to someplace where she is now being taken care of, or perhaps she died.

We received the notification that they are building something new. I’ve watched each day the trucks drive by, a tree cut down, port-o-potty put in place. Today, this is what I saw. Tonight, I can see the light in the window of the next house over. The space where the house was lovelier than the house that used to live there.

I love to watch buildings come down, when it’s done on purpose and safely. There’s some pleasure in the destruction, especially when it’s run-down and ugly, no longer useful. I  see the space and wonder what will be built in it’s place. I dream a little bit about what I’d build there, if I had unlimited resources.

Not so much the destruction of my own patterns, habits, ways of being that are no longer serving me. No. Not when it’s personal. That demolition is rarely done on purpose or safely. Despite the ugliness, the un-usefulness, despite the old ways of being actually blocking me from progress, rarely do I dismantle them peacefully or the first time I’m told. I resist that shit until the walls are falling down around me, until the painful, shitty thing has happened AGAIN. Until it seems I’ve failed. In the same way. Again.

I hold my own patterns, the stories I’ve been telling myself my whole life, close to me, as if they are a security blanket. They are all I know. I don’t know who I am without them. So, I keep repeating them.

I have dreams. I can see something more beautiful for my life. I can see my purpose, I can see joy, I can see love.  But when it comes time to demolish the security of my old ways of being, I don’t believe that I have the resources to build what I dream. I can’t see how much lovelier the space than the worn-out building.

Until the Universe comes in with the excavator. Little by little, decisions not made by me force me to change my plans. Little by little, my comfortable life feels not so comfortable. Decisions I’ve made turn out more challenging than I thought they’d be. Plans I had for the way everything would play out don’t play out that way. Time and time again, it feels like my world is crumbling, falling down around me. It’s not as satisfying as watching the building come down.

Until I’ve had enough. Until I’m finally sick of my own shit. That’s what it takes when you’re stubborn.

This time, I’ll make the decision myself to change. It’s going to happen anyway; this time I’ll be the architect. I’ll drive the excavator, with faith in the passenger seat. I surrender.

I see the beauty in the space I’ve created for myself. Without my stories, I have a clean slate. I can see a light in the window in the house on the other side. And everywhere I turn, grace.

Wake up, Wild Child

We all have a wildness in us, a beast wanting to break free. This is our true nature, our very core. This wildness does not care about fitting in or what the neighbors think. She doesn’t care about etiquette or rules. She doesn’t need to get along. She lives by the rules of her own heart: survival, compassion, love. She is a fierce protector, a sensual goddess, mother, lover, creator of life. Her moods sway with the tide. She is one with the earth and the sea, the sun and the moon, the stars in the sky.

StrengthOur inner wild woman believes in fairies and elves, unicorns and happy endings. She believes that love will always find a way. She is both psychic and scientist, adventurer and dreamer.

She is light and darkness, human and divine. She is everything we are and everything we can be.

How often do we keep her locked away? She is not to come out in public. She has been shushed and prettied up, seen and not heard. She has been taught to keep herself small, make room for others, don’t get too big for your britches. That’s not real, nobody cares, be a good girl, now.

She learned to be quiet, to make herself invisible. She conformed to expectations and put her wild self to sleep.

You can still see the wildness in her eyes that sparkle when she’s happy. When she dances in joy. When she is in love. When she feels safe, she’ll let her wildness play, she sparkles in the sunlight.

Wake up wild child! The world is calling you now. We need your wisdom, we need your sparkle.

We know you’re scared, you must trust us now. It is your time. You’ve been hushed and shushed and told you’re not enough, but it’s time you know the truth.

You are perfect in your wildness. You are enough, right now, exactly as you are. You have everything you need. It’s time to come out now, bring your light into the darkness. We need all of you.

And her heart filled with love as she shed all pretense. She brushed off expectation, washed off the dull exterior of what she thought was normal, and she sparkled. She raised her voice and sang to the world the truth that she knew. She let her light shine as big as it was, a beacon to those who had lost all hope. She embraced her darkness and let her moods shift with the moon and the tides. She is one with the wildness inside her, she lives by the rules of her own heart, she follows the light of her soul.

She is woman, brave and true. She is you.

What’s with the pink hair?

I’ve always been fairly conservative in how I dress, my hair and makeup. But when my mom got the first turquoise strip in her white hair, I started thinking: I could do that, but I would do pink.

I’ve spent a lot of my life trying to fit in, trying to please everyone. The one who was up for anything, easy going, wanting peace, wanting to be liked by everybody. I went through life worried about what other people would think. I either was who I thought everybody wanted me to be or I did not speak. I felt so different from everybody else, I was afraid of not fitting in.

You can imagine how well that worked out for me, how happy that made me. I’m not sure that I made too many other people happy, either, not really. I don’t think I was very good at being somebody else.

I’ve come to realize that my old story about not being able to maintain any weight loss, about gaining the weight in the first place, is about not feeling safe in the world around me, not feeling safe to be all of who I really am. The extra weight a protective layer between me and the world. In fact, my whole weight loss journey, this time around, has really been about being who I really am, accepting all of me, and showing who I am to the world. It’s about following my light and shining my light. It’s about stepping out of my comfort zone to do what brings me joy, peace, purpose; it’s about expanding my comfort zone so that I feel safe in the world being all of who I am.

What I’ve learned is that I’m much better and more successful at being myself than trying to be someone I think others want me to be. It’s a lot easier, too. I’m not really counting or caring so much how many people like me and how many don’t. I do know that I am more and more in situations where I am accepted and loved exactly as I am. My comfort zone is expanding. I’m living each day more fully. I am happier, overall, than I’ve ever been.

Julie AnnSo, back to the pink hair. It was finally time. I’ve been going through some stuff for a few weeks, not stuff happening to me, but releasing old shit and having a tough time keeping my vibration high. I needed a pick-me-up, and getting my hair done has always been a mood lifter. Not wanting to cut my hair or change the style, coloring it magenta was the logical next choice. While I felt like it would take some courage leading up to it, when the time finally came, it was easy. I thought it might feel dramatic, but it really feels natural, the fun part of myself, right up front. (Remember the mullet, business in the front, party in the back? Party is in the front this time.)

Because this is me.

Day 12: You Are Beautiful

I’m talking about body image and beauty. Doing these videos for 30 days has really triggered some of my self image crap, as you might imagine, looking at myself in the video every day. It’s actually been a healing exercise. People aren’t seeing ONLY your physical being when the look at you. They’re seeing all that you are, and you are beautiful exactly the way you are. You are radiant when you are authentically you, doing what gives you joy, sharing your passion. Shine your light, Gorgeous!

It’s not just that I gave up sugar

For many of us, losing weight is much more an emotional and spiritual journey than a physical one. We’ve come to a point where we’ve spent our entire adult lives, or longer, obsessed with food and not eating and feeling hungry, both physically and emotionally. Diets no longer work. We’re tired of feeling like everything delicious is fattening, we’ve come to hate the gym, and we’re making decisions based on hating our bodies. We’ve been punishing ourselves and we’ve had enough.

I came to this point a couple of years ago and decided to stop dieting. No more counting calories, no more boring hours at the gym. I was going to eat healthy most of the time and learn to accept myself as I was. I was going to do the emotional work and see what happened with my health and weight. Furthermore, I was going to stop letting my weight keep me from going out and doing things I enjoyed.

I wish I could say I instantly started loosing weight, but I didn’t. I can say that I did the self improvement work, the emotional work, and I got a lot happier. I stopped obsessing about food and I stopped beating myself up over every dessert. I learned how to be happy with who I am. The time I used to spend dreaming of my next meal, I spent getting to know myself. I started listening to the wisdom of my own body. Instead of listening to what other people/organizations/books were telling me to eat, I paid attention to what made me feel good and what made me feel bad.

And then the desire to lose weight came back to the forefront. It had never really left, but I didn’t pay attention to it. My body said no to a detox or cleanse. I couldn’t face the modified fast. I was already eating pretty healthy. So, I surrendered and put it into God’s hands. I asked my angels and spirit guides for help.

And, finally, I started taking my own medicine.

One more, feeling bad about a number of things, I sat down and decided that I was going to spend the day in radical self-love. Any negative messages would be replaced with love. For that day, I would accept all of who I was and everything I did. Any time I thought about it, I would consciously fill my body with the energy of the feeling you get when you love someone, and it would be for myself.

It was a really great day.

It was also the day I realized that I was eating more sugar than I realized and I gave it up. Just like that. Nope, not going to have it anymore. (note that I am a total sugar addict and any previous attempts to give it up have resulted in a somewhat unpleasant detoxification process) It was the day I started losing weight again.

When I’m asked how I lost the weight, I say I gave up sugar. But it was much more than that.

My day of self-love turned into 2 days, then a week. I started a process of releasing, letting go of any energy that wasn’t serving me. I let go of who I am NOT and embraced who I am. I looked not only at what I like about myself, but also about what I don’t like, and I accepted and loved all of it.

Here’s the point of why I’m telling this story. It’s not just that I gave up sugar. I started with self-love and acceptance and I no longer had to hide. Because so many of us are hiding who we are beneath what we perceive to be a protective layer of fat. And it doesn’t serve us. But when we let go of the beliefs that we have to be perfect to be lovable, when we stop trying to fit in, when we let our own unique and beautiful light shine, we can also release what is toxic in our physical bodies.

I have a lot more to say on this and there is more to my story. I will tell it as I am able.

We’re friends, my body and I

and i said to my body. softly. ‘i want to be your friend.’ it took a long breath. and replied ‘i have been waiting my whole life for this.’ ~Nayyirah Waheed

For how long have I not been a friend to my body? Criticizing her, hating her, wishing she was I want to be your friendsomething else. A chubby child and somewhat taller than average girl. A reader, a thinker, not an athlete. I learned early on that my body was not “right,” and the path to happiness was raw vegetables, rice cakes, and hours at the gym (a path I rarely followed).

When I started college, the “freshman 15” was closer to 30 and there started my relationship with dieting, a 20+ year dysfunctional relationship. Weight Watchers, Atkins, South Beach, counting calories, hours at the gym, I even ran for a few years. At one point, my personal trainer had me on a 1000 calorie diet, which I stayed on for all of two days.

If you’ve never dieted or worried about your weight, here’s what dieting feels like: being hungry all the time, always being obsessed with your next meal, and hating yourself every time you eat chocolate. Sounds like fun, right?

With each diet, I was sure I had the magic formula and I would lose the weight and keep it off. And every time, I gained the weight back.

Until finally, I had enough. Enough punishing my body. Enough hating myself. Enough criticism. Enough restrictions.

Enough of other people, people who do not live in my body, telling me what not to eat.

“and I said to my body softly, ‘I want to be your friend.'”

For every person who has lost weight and gained it back, there is either a physiological, emotional, and/or energetic reason for the extra weight. And for each person, the reason is unique. Any diet that focuses only on behavior modification without addressing those reasons will most likely not work in the long run, which is why the diet industry is multi-million dollar industry.

Not to mention the adverse affect of GMOs (genetically modified organism) and huge increase of sugar in our diets. Sugar, by the way, is highly addictive, and it’s hidden in a LOT of foods – start reading labels and you’ll see.

I could get on my soap box about what society and the media have done to our self-confidence and body image, but I’ll leave that for another day and get back to my story.

When I decided to befriend my body, to love her the way she is, I knew I had a journey of emotional healing ahead of me. All of the energy I had been putting into counting calories, I put into meditation, energy work, journaling, getting to know myself.

I started listening to the wisdom of my body, I asked her what kind of nutrients she wanted to keep going. The more I listened, the more she spoke. She does not feel well on wheat gluten or dairy, which is not easy. Despite the popularity of vegetarian and vegan lifestyles, she needs animal protein to stay healthy. Every day, every meal, she has different needs for what kind and how much food will make her work at optimal level.

The human body is meant to move, so I found better ways than spending hours on a treadmill. This body loves to walk and to dance, so we do more of that.

Our relationship – my body, mind, and spirit – is evolving. Sometimes the mind or spirit decide on a pizza and ice cream. My body has a reaction and I apologize and we move on.

I have not yet magically started shedding pounds, but I’ve stopped worrying about it so much. I’ve accepted that this is one of the lessons I’ve come to earth to learn. We’ve come a long way to a more loving relationship.

We’re friends, my body and I.