Monday, June 23, 2014

" Rise ... "

I used to be afraid of giving up
The road was just too tough
Out here on my own
My path was so alone

But now I see clearly
Everything within me
Is reaching up to the sky
I can see the world with open eyes

You can't let it pass you
Just take hold and grasp it
Now's the time to take a chance

And together we'll rise
We'll rise
Together we can do anything

~ McClain Sisters ~ Rise ~ 

There is a great deal of conversation regarding yeast, nutritional yeast that is, in vegan lifestyles.  But not all yeast is good yeast, so it is important to learn about the beneficial bacteria and the affects on our digestion and immune system.

Candida albicans, also known as a pathogenic yeast.  This single cell organism is found growing throughout our bloodstream and organs.  It is a cause for much of the inflammation that disrupts bodily functions.  And like all yeasts, it thrives on sugars that are abundant in the modern western diet.  And while it feasts on these sugars, it also drains your body of essential nutrients.

Different Types of Yeast
  • Bakers Yeast – A live yeast that is typically purchased in packets or in a compressed brick
  • Brewers Yeast – A live yeast used in the brewing of alcoholic beverages like beer (or other malt beverages)
  • Nutritional Yeast – Nutritional yeast is no-longer alive. It has similar nutrients and amino acids but no sugar content. It has a taste similar to cheese which is why vegetarians commonly use nutritional yeast flakes in recipes to make vegan cheeses, on pizza, or sprinkled over pasta or popcorn.
  • Candida Yeast – The bad yeast that thrives in our body.

Most raw vegans use nutritional yeast because it provides a good source of B vitamins.  But what really IS nutritional yeast??  Well, some studies claim that it is a neurotoxin, a GMO product, a disguised MSG, added synthetic vitamins, and flavor enhancers.  As well that it contains Free Glutamate Acid which is the same neurotoxin compound as mono sodium glutamate (MSG).  They disguise the true identity of MSG with fancy names.

As well, in various books there are beliefs that nutritional yeast, bakers yeast and brewers yeast are not well tolerated and can contribute to the over growth of yeast infections and candida in the body.  This can wreck havoc particularly with those living with chronic ill-nesses or dis-eases.

Yet you don’t have to completely cut out yeast as it can be beneficial and does occur naturally as a part of the normal flora in our digestive system.  So keep it in check ... if you are susceptible to yeast, choose gluten-free foods, natural sweeteners and foods that have a much less dramatic impact on your glycemic index / sugar levels.

Always check with your preferred health-care provider 
to assist you in optimum foods for optimum health.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

" Deserve ... "

Ooh, yeah, yeah, well, well, well
Do you mind if I tell the truth for a second y'all? ...
I don't like it but I know, I gotta trust you
It ain't cool 'cause I know, it's true
For me to ask you, who the hell you trying to impress?
For you to laugh it off like it ain't nothing
I know it's something maybe just maybe
But we do the same shit
~ Tank ~ Deserve ~

All you want is a little honesty ... a little truthfulness.  Perhaps too much to ask from some.  Yet what hurts more is not the lying, but that they didn’t think you deserved the truth.  Yeah ... that ones hurts deep, real DEEP.
So again, the lesson is being served (enter crazy scream sound effect) .... to find out who you can count on again ... and to find out who you can’t count on ... to find out if you are a priority ... or if you are a second thought ... to find out if their lives are so busy ... or find out they just don’t have time for you.  And it is not about “expecting” things to crap out, or paranoia ... it is about treating each other with respect, love and trust.  Ahhhhhh yes ... TRUST, the kicker ... you can win some but you sure can loose some.  So perhaps they didn’t trust you ENOUGH ... so then what is the foundation of your relationship?
Ranting, raving, bitching and complaining ... not worth the time.  Therapy?  Well that is what blogging is for, an outlet, a means to express.  So I find myself asking the question AGAIN... what do YOU think you deserve?  Sitting in zen meditation, grateful for the stillness which allows for answers to arise ... and they always do.  
You know your worth, you know who you are, nothing and no one defines you ...

Loud and clear.  Then why the suffering?  why the sadness?  why the tears?  because the lesson is being served AGAIN.  WTF ... AGAIN!!  Clearing away the ego-based negative energy ... I ask myself, what is there for me to learn this time?  what did I miss the last time?  where is the gift?  where is the blessing?  

I am open and I am ready to receive the message ...
Yes, there is always a message.  Or a sign.  Waiting and wondering for it.  I know the insight will present itself, when it needs to.  So I sit with this, discomfort et al, and know that I need to get out of my own way.  Let it unfold as it will.  Let it happen as it will.  It doesn’t require your assistance.  It doesn’t require your approval.  
I get it, it makes sense ... but it doesn’t make it any harder ... 

Allowing myself to feel all the emotions that come with it.  I let them come and go.  I make efforts not to grasp.  Not to attach.  Not to get a hold of ... but to allow them to be as they are.  Just stepping out of the way ... at times feels like losing control, but then control of what, with so much uncertainty what is real and what is an illusion?
Yet, I thought it was real ... and at a time, it probably was ... but we change and accepting you are just an option is the first step.  The empowerment comes with what you DO with it.  Not being a doormat, not making excuses for others.  
Rather live by example ... beautiful mantra and hard to apply ... but trying.  And even still, shit happens ... and this is one of those times.  So this too shall pass, because it always does.  Turning it around to gratitude and being thankful for the revelation, to know where and whom to focus energy and time on.  
Assuming that the relationship will recover is someone else making an ass of themselves.  Forgiveness is always available  ... and so are memories.  People ALWAYS remember how you treat them, not what you DO for them.  A good reminder and perhaps a new mantra to adopt going forward because a half truth is still a full lie.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

" Shut Up ... "

It seems like everyday I make mistakes
I just can't get it right
It's like I'm the one you love to hate
But not today
So shut up, shut up, shut up
Don't want to hear it
Get out, get out, get out
Get out of my way
Step up, step up, step up
You'll never stop me
Nothing you say today
Is gonna bring me down ...
~ Simple Plan ~ Shut Up ~

How do you accomplish a personal goal?  ... by thinking about it, dreaming about it, obsessing about it ... but what about shutting up about it?  Yeah, didn’t expect that one right?  
We’ve all been there ... we talk about our big, challenging, amazing goal ... it is fun, feels awesome to bask in the glow of people who admire you for wanting to take it on.  It can almost feel like you’ve already accomplished the goal.  But you haven’t and are probably less likely to because when your ego inflates when concerned about what people are thinking, you are less motivated to actually complete the goal.  

And yes, I know this first hand ...
This may not make a whole lot of sense.  We share our intentions to receive support and further motivation.  Our need for certainty makes us declare those intentions even if we have not yet become those things ... so where is our sense of identity when nothing is certain?

Focus solely on the work ... the rest will happen
" .personal satisfaction of achievement is infinitely sweeter than public acclaim "

In all that we do, we will face doubt.  There is always a starting point and there is always a struggle.  This is what makes it a journey, an adventure ... life.  Shut up and keep going, I often tell myself.  So many times that I’ve lost count.  mental note ... when in doubt, ask yourself, what would your life look like if you didn’t give up so easily? What separates those who keep going from those who give up?

“judge not before you judge yourself”

And as for those that tell think you won’t amount up to much anyhow ... does it really matter what they think?  Remember, they are usually the ones ranting and raving about themselves, selfies and other social media play-by-play status updates.  You have to wonder if the amount of time dedicated to the aforementioned was actually directed towards a goal, so much would get done!  
Practice what you preach and live by example ... and watch the magic unfold.

Friday, June 13, 2014

" This Routine … "

I've seen a thousand thoughtless faces today
A thousand i saw yesterday
It's our ignorance that keeps us up to pace
It's our tvs that keep us smiling

And all the world's money won't buy you freedom,
Diamond rings don't save lives
How can a man ever be free
Half the world is sleeping now in front of tvs
And the other half is crying to the night sky
Is this why we were born?
I say f*ck this routine
~ The Broadways ~ This Routine ~

Life is a routine and routine is resistance to wonder, according to Abraham Joshua Heschel, who was one of the leading American Rabbis, theologians, and social activists of the 20th century. 

Do you feel your routine is an issue  
Do you just get use to & learn to accept which limits in how you see things?  
Do you feel you’ve lost a sense of wonder in our world?

live the dream to become the dream

Whoa! heavy questions right off the bat ... but something to think about ... as this is something I am struggling with at the moment.  Not the sense of wonder, excitement and curiosity ... I continue to put in the WORK to be present in that space ... it is hearing from the others ... “it doesn’t matter, who cares, we’ve always done it this way, i won’t work anyhow ...”

And no surprise right ... we’ve ALL been there ... discouraged, depressed and defeated.  But we are not trees.  We can move.  We can change.  We can create ... IF we choose to break out of what “isn’t working” we make that space.

Accepting who you are and believing nothing is changeable is lethal.  All to often we attempt to change our situation without looking at the root cause ... ourselves.  You can make a difference in your life if you change the way you interact with the world.

I hope that others begin with visualizing their hopes and dreams ~ this harnesses the power within and creates new pathways and routines.  I hope that they play out new scenarios in their minds and lives as they prepare for the moments when a new found confidence is crucial.  

Life really is about breaking out of your routine and comfort zone … 
allowing life to unfold … and remaining open to the possibilities.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

" Unfold … "

It doesn't lessen my hope
You know our time and all
Oh let it unfold
I won't leave it untold

The feeling goes on and on and on
You tell me things you've never said
Oh, the illusions getting old
I would have given you it all ...

The feeling goes on and on and on

~ The Xx ~ Unfold ~ 

Unfold ... allowing things to unfold is about noticing what is, as it is, in its absolute perfection by surrendering our personal need to control things.  When everything in form falls away, we realize this is who we are.  By simplifying life itself with no effort to do, just pure being ... 

Oddly, with all the efforts we put into resisting life, we actually miss it.  We get caught in the should be’s and might have been’s that only support anxiety and regret.  

But if we at the same time, realize that here is LIFE ... perfect as it is ... effortlessly unfolding ... if we put aside the fight with what is and just ... notice.

Personally, by letting go of my self-berating and story-telling, I have opened my heart and mind instead to ... what is present, what do I know to be true, where is the gift, where is the compassion ... and guess what showed up ... LOVE.

And what is LOVE? .... Love is almost always defined through our parents, how they interacted with one another and with us.  The imprint of these interactions are often unconscious, yet they are ever present in our day to day lives.  So we play out these same patterns all our lives.

 ... but what if we become aware of what is running our unconscious that is resisting to what is and resulting in suffering ... 

Simply ask yourself ... Are you generous, open and compassionate to yourself? Are you unavailable, thinking only of yourself and withholding love unless it is proven worthy or your expectations have been met?

Allowing things to just unfold requires you to have faith ... real FAITH ... in the uncertainty ... dropping judgement, dropping expectations.  Nothing is how we perceive it, nor is it possible for our perceptions to be accurate, because our past experiences and our judgements are always influencing what we perceive.  Therefore, if you can release the ideas you have created around yourself and others, you can be free of the drama within your life.

Love is evolving and unfolding all around us ... it naturally feeds our soul and evolves our consciousness.  By focusing on the GIVING of LOVE and not on the receiving of necessary needs and controlling expectations, we can BE.  And when we can BE and let life unfold, we give unconditionally of our heart and let love flow freely

Monday, June 9, 2014

" Yin &Yang … "

It's got some words and a beat to it
Don't you ask me to stop wanting it
Don't ask me to stop needing it
It's just the Yin & the Yang

Call it Zen or call it Buddha
Inner peace ...
That's just the Yin & the Yang of it

In from the cold, show me ecstasy
Just let the tears roll on out of me
Know what it's like to love
And like to be loved

~ Adam Ant ~ Yin & Yang ~ 

The concept of Yin and Yang recently came up with my doc.  We discussed how important it was for me to balance my yin energy with my yang energy ... via physical activity.  This lead me to look into what each provides and what exercise can support this middle way.

Yin and Yang represents all forms of polarity ... Originally, Yang was simply whatever was clearly visible, illuminated by the sun and Yin was whatever was hard to see, in the shade.  Yang/Yin is the foundation for ancient Asian concepts of body/spirit, a physical, observable, “material world” and an unseen “spiritual” dimension.

And polarity comes from change.  The recognition of change, as a concept related to polarity, leads to the concept of a cycle of becoming with the two polar forces never quite coming together.  Hence, the circular form of the primal beginning t'ai chi t'u (the famous yin-yang symbol).  The yin-yang symbol represents dark and light, cold and hot, soft and hard, feminine and masculine.  

Simply speaking, in regards to working your body, yoga, stretching and sun-saluting to your heart charkra’s are yin activities ... running and lifting weights are yang activities.  Isolation in either groups of activity has their limitations.  The body responds best to a balance between yin and yang activities. 

Think of it this way ... the yin-style exerciser prefers a cup of chamomile tea whereas the yang-style exerciser prefers a triple espresso.  And each has their purpose ... stimulation or relaxations ... winding up or calming down. 


Internal focus

Mind-body consciousness
Calming, focusing, relaxing
Often slow and methodical
Builds coordination, balance, precision of movement
Broad focus on sensation and awareness of body in space
Focus on respect for the body, healing, injury prevention and recovery
Meditative, goal-less practice


External focus

Physically intense
Exciting, energizing
Often fast and forceful
Builds muscle mass, strength, stamina, endurance, power
Narrow focus on activity and individual muscle groups
Focus on effort; acceptance of pain and some risk
Goal-oriented, concentrated task

Too much yang involves extreme bodybuilding, fad diets and some high intensity time training.  Too much yin involves lack of outward intensity and can leave you ill prepared for certain athletic demands.  Again, this can happen … so the blending of the two worlds is always ideal and some integrative exercise programs combine the mind-body awareness ... serenity, resilience and strength.

 often a shift in perception is all that it takes  

Whether you are drawn to the intensity of yang or the calm and focus of yin, satisfaction can result from combining both.  The physical skill and control developed through yin training is enhanced by the force and power of yang training, and vice versa.  All forms of activity can provide a blend of athleticism, flexibility and isometric strength.  And the activity you choose may matter less than the way you practice it.  Mindful practices are classically a yin practice but can be infused with more intensity and force to support your yang practice.  

Personally speaking, weight lifting can induce a meditative state of clarity similar to my yoga practice ... only if I ask myself ... “are you present in it?”

Monday, June 2, 2014

" Frustrate … "

I want to scream
Clenched fist, ground teeth
A bad dream, feeling so mean
Stumble across my piece ...

Quiver the index, sweat between the skin and the steel
All of the sudden it feels so real
The bang, the smoke, the blood ... 
A release to stay insane
~ Flotsam and Jetsam ~ Frustrate ~

Frustration can get the best of anyone ... and it happens when we are trying to do something in our own strength that we cannot do.

It can happen when we feel like we are in a rut ... a dead-end job, in survival mode, in a toxic relationship ... all while being unhappy achieving none of your goals or dreams.  As we age, we start to reflect, and if we feel like we have not much to show for it ... frustration sets in.

Let go or be dragged ...

Frustration brings on a mixture of anger and sadness as a result of interactions with people, events or circumstances.  How we react and our emotional response determines our level of frustration, when things don’t go according to plan. In other words, we don’t get what we want.

Let’s get some perspective ... are your current problems and issues of major consequence in the long run?  Ask yourself if it will even matter 5 or 10 years from now  Personally, my frustrations were an excuse to prevent me from achieving my goals and living my life to the fullest.  I was unrealistic and impatient.  I was full of pride, narcissism & ego and then there was a major shift ...

I started to count my blessings and appreciate what I have in my life rather than worry about what I didn’t have.  

I started to become clear about what I wanted in my life and who I wanted in my life.

I started to speak my truth and follow my path, even if it is alone.

And it is easy to slip back into old patterns, old scripts and old ways.  But it is how easily we get ourselves out of that place ... how easily we “unstuck” ourselves.

frustration and confidence are both within my control, 
but only one will help me achieve the life I crave.