Finding Calm in the Chaos: Saffron and Sage, a Holistic Health Club in San Diego

When it comes to our health, it can be easy to reach for the band-aid or a quick fix: medication, alcohol, unhealthy habits, invasive procedures, etc. The list goes on.

This is not the case at Saffron and Sage, a holistic health club, here in San Diego, CA.

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At Saffron and Sage they work to treat the underlying causes to the aliments by connecting their clients with practitioners, practices, and products that help to regain or maintain wellbeing.

They have an extensive list of services including acupuncture, botanical medicine, energy therapy, fire cupping, life coaching, massage therapy, meditative therapy, movement therapy, nutritional therapy, psychotherapy, spiritual direction, and sound therapy. In addition to these services Saffron and Sage offers daily group classes in their beautiful studio. Check out their schedule here. My personal favorite is the Sunday evening breath-work class with Chelcy Pine.

Cristin Smith and Me. Chaos Calmer #2.

Cristin Smith and Me. Chaos Calmer #2.

Please check out my interview with Cristin Smith, Founder and Spiritual Director at Saffron and Sage. In this interview we discuss her personal journey towards wholeness and wellness. And how this experience guided her to launching Saffron and Sage.

Finding Calm in the Chaos: Donation Based Yoga at the Beach with Namasteve

As I roll my yoga mat out on the soft grass I pause for a moment to soak in my current surroundings. Less than 100 feet in front of me are the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean, creating a natural meditative yoga track. The cool damp and salty breeze pairs perfectly with the warm midmorning morning sun. I think to myself, “this is the way to spend my Sunday morning.”

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Am I at a fancy and expensive yoga retreat? No, I’m about a mile away from my home in the neighborhood of Pacific Beach. 

This picturesque location, here in San Diego, is the place to practice yoga. Steve Hubbard, better known as Namasteve offers this donation-based yoga practice every week. An accessible and non-intimidating practice, Namaste, has taught thousands here for the past 12 years. 

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This is not the place to show off your complicated and instagram worthy yoga poses. No, Namasteve’s practice is approachable. He keeps it simple (this does not mean it’s always easy) and meets people where they are. For Steve yoga is about “showing up, letting go of any need to perform, breathing, connecting to your body, and being present.” Anybody can do that. 

The yoga community may seem intimidating to those who have never practiced, however, Namasteve, gathers those from all walks of life. From veteran yogis who have been practicing for years, to first time students, athletes, young, and the old.

Steve’s practical approach and humor, especially during difficult moments in practice, will snap you out of any seriousness. It is fun. 

His trademark “Downward facing doggie!” Is sure to bring a smile to your face and maybe a giggle or two. 

Namasteve (Steve Hubbard) and Me. Chaos Calmer #1.

Namasteve (Steve Hubbard) and Me. Chaos Calmer #1.

Steve considers himself “a normal guy” “I’m not holier than thou.”he told me during our interview. He wants to give other people the opportunity to show up and participate in this valuable practice. 

I hope you were able to check out the interview with Steve above, where we discuss his journey, his experience and how he is bringing Calm to the Chaos here in San Diego.

If you are in the San Diego area and looking for some Calm in the Chaos, check out this donation-based beachside yoga in Pacific Beach!

Tuesdays and Thursdays 9am

Saturday and Sundays at 10am

Can’t make it to yoga? Steve offers access to classes via video. Check out a free 2 week membership here.

For more information: https://www.namasteveyoga.com/On instagram: https://www.instagram.com/namasteveyoga/

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Beyond Me

There are many things in life that are beyond us. Do you find yourself questioning and using your precious energy on situations and circumstances that are unanswerable? How do we deal with all those things in life that are not in our control??

6 Ways to Feel Those Feelings

How much time to you spend tuning into your emotions?

Most of us avoid feeling our feelings because it can hurt. It’s uncomfortable, and sometimes it’s easier to just push everything down and worry about it another day or perhaps never. However, when we push our feelings down, we suffer. Maybe not immediately, but eventually, the continuous pushing down of feelings can also lead to one or all of the following: resentment, reactivity, depression, anxiety, frustration, impatience, physical pain, disease, and unhealthy behaviors (ie: alcohol, drugs, sex, phone, shopping, gambling, amazon prime, gaming, social media, etc.).

From a young age we are taught to hide our feelings. “Stop crying, it’s not that big of a deal.”

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Now in adulthood we have been primed to stifle our feelings.

It’s a sign of weakness to show emotion? Right? NO!

Have you ever been blatantly upset, and someone asks you how you are feeling, and you respond, “I’m fine.”

We see it in the movies all the time. The women is crying, tearful, or perhaps raging around the house, slamming cupboards, and the clueless male character asks the women what is wrong. She clichely replies, “I’m fine.”

The funny thing is that the male character in this scene actually thinks this is the truth. He goes about his business.

Next thing you know the clearly upset woman starts making more of a scene, sniffling, slamming, marching around, glaring, and perhaps mumbling some obscenity. Finally, a breaking point, an argument. What if the emotion the woman was originally feeling was acknowledged and expressed in an intentional manner?

Up until just recently, I was a master at pushing things down, telling myself “everything is fine.” “No big deal.” However, when I did break, my feelings would abruptly emerge out of nowhere, often causing conflict or hurt with those I loved most. In addition to the core emotions I would be feeling (angry, sad, anxious, frustrated), I would be angry or anxious about even having these feelings.

“I shouldn’t be sad.” “I should be grateful for what I have.” “Many people have it worse than I do.” “You’re being ridiculous. Stop this already.”

Feeling our feelings is an important component of owning life and stepping into the driver’s seat. Feelings and emotions are energy, and this energy has to go somewhere.
So how do we do it?

Below are six ways to start feeling your feelings today:

When going through these steps remember, to acknowledge positive emotions too. This practice is not only for negative emotions. It’s important to learn how to feel both.

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  1. Set aside time daily:
    Tune in: How are you feeling? Be still. Take at least 10 minutes of uninterrupted time to tune in. Our feelings are not always obvious. Tuning into any physical sensations can also help pull out those buried feelings. Where are my emotions hiding? (Ie: In my lower back, in my chest and neck area. This tightness.) How have you been sleeping? Insomnia or excessive sleep?

  2. Acknowledge:
    Be honest. Say to yourself, write it down, or say it out loud.
    “Hi anger, I feel you.”

  3. Physically release:
    Cry, scream (I would recommend doing this into pillow, in a closed room, or in your car, so you don’t scare others), a creative exercise (painting, writing, crafting, etc.) and/or movement (run, dance, punching bag, or other physical activity)

  4. Write:
    Give your internal emotions a voice. Writing is a great way to release emotions. Especially if you are extremely angry, our words can get ahead of us and hurt others. Instead write. No filters. Get out the anger, the sadness or other emotions. By the way, this also works with feel-good emotions happiness, love, excitement, etc.

  5. Talk about it:
    Close friends, family members, and ideally professionals are great way to get those feelings out. Sometimes we just need to be heard.

  6. Make changes if necessary/possible:
    Our emotions do not always have a reason, nor do we always need a reason to feel a certain way, however, think about the situations you are putting yourself in, the people you are surrounding yourself with, the way you are taking care of yourself (sleep, nutrition, exercise, meditation, etc), and how you are spending your time. For example, if you are surrounding yourself with people who constantly complain or put you down, you’ll likely want to find a new group to hang around. Make changes as necessary and able.

What about you? How are you feeling your feelings today?

What does it mean to live your truth?

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Think really hard about the person you want to be, the best version of yourself, the anything is possible person you have dreamt to be. That is who you really are. And guess what? That is inside of you right now. Those feelings and emotions that arise when you think of your dreams, visions and goals, it’s not something that just magically appears once x happens. Those feelings are in there, maybe dormant, but it’s in you. And it’s even possible for you to feel some of those feelings right now. And that is part of your truth.

So what are the other parts? It’s living and behaving in a way that is aligned with your values, your dreams, your goals, your personality. It’s showing up as the beautiful and real person you are.

The kicker: it’s not easy. Unfortunately, we can loose site of the ‘truth.’ It’s called distractions, and we are surrounded by them constantly. We are living in a time of information overload. While beneficial in many ways, the advice, influence (aka social media-time trap), and options, can cause us to question our paths and our behaviors.

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With the busyness of life, falling into auto-pilot, doing and living in a way that just happens, and becoming reactive to life, instead of living intentionally, pulls us further and further away from the truth. To give and give, please, and overbook, you may forget about yourself, who you are and what you want. The result is an icky feeling, maybe some resentment, overwhelm, guilt, shame, exhaustion or jealousy.

My goal, however, is to challenge you. Take a step back and figure out who you are. Today I challenge you to start living a life aligned with that real person you are, your authentic identity, and that awesomeness inside you that people deserve to see.  

How? Want more information on how to starting living a life aligned with your truth? Check out the LIVE YOUR TRUTH workshop.

Change Game: Six supportive strategies to guide you through those not so pleasant changes

There are few certainties in life, but change is one of them.

While change is guaranteed, it doesn’t make transitions easy. Whether these changes bring us sadness or joy, they are usually unpredictable and can catch us off guard. As I’ve gotten older, and gathered more responsibilities, I’ve found life to be a series of frequent up and down moments. Financial responsibilities, raising children, health, social life, work, family, relationships, the way I feel about myself, my business, and the list goes on.

Growing up too fast!

Growing up too fast!

When things are going good, my inner voice is quick to remind me of the brevity of the situation,  “This isn’t going to last.” “Things are going to change soon.” “You only have one more day of vacation, better make it count!” “My kids are growing up too fast!”

On the flip side when things aren’t going so good, like when I am doubting myself, my choices, or if I’m in a challenging situation (arguing with my husband, financial strain, loneliness, doubting my career, etc.) my inner critic somehow convinces me that this is the way it is, and this is the way it has to be.

This past week, my inner critic was loud AF. I just couldn’t shake the thought, the fear, that I may end up as ‘the van down by the river’ gal.

I may end up as ‘the van down by the river’ gal.

If you are not familiar let me refresh your memory. Chris Farley. Saturday Night Live. Broken coffee table. Here's a clip if you need a refresher.

But guess what? It’s Thursday night and I’m over it! For this moment that is. I realize thoughts, situations, and plans can change at any moment.

Deep thoughts

Deep thoughts

But that is how life is, and that's how our mind is. Challenges and change, whether internal (fear, doubt, uncertainty), or external (a move, a career change, a loss, a breakup, a divorce, financial stress) are bottom line tough to deal with.

When we are in the midst of a meltdown, whether it’s something ‘big’ or ‘small.’ Know that this will change too because, as I mentioned, CHANGE is CERTAIN.

 This doesn’t mean, however, that we should sit around on the sidelines anxious about the next change. Waiting for things to miraculously be better will likely leave you feeling frustrated, helpless, and victimized.

Someday I’ll make more money….someday I’ll be healthier…someday my relationship will be better…someday my business will take off…someday I’ll enjoy my job…someday I won’t think I’m a loser.

On the other hand, we also can not expect these changes to happen over night, even if we put in the work.
So what to do? Here are six tips to get you started and help guide you through those not so pleasant changes in our life.

Doing the work…

Doing the work…

  1. Accept what is.

    “I just wish that voice would stop tormenting me and putting me down!”

    Do you want to know what your inner critic does with those types of comments? It’s fuel. Those critical thoughts will just get louder. Accept them. “Ok, I hear you, but I don’t have to believe you.” Or take an unpleasant situation for example, “I just wish things would be different.” Or, “If only…”

    You can’t think your way through change. Acceptance is key. Without acceptance it is difficult to move forward.

  2. Think about your choices. Can you change the situation? Can you change your attitude?

    Regarding that pesky inner critic, I can choose to not listen and not believe these thoughts. I can crowd out the negative thoughts with positive ones (think gratitude).

  3. Put those choices into action. We all have choices, and we have the ability to put these choices into action.

    Using my inner critic as the example, I can practice gratitude. What can I appreciate about myself? How can I talk to myself nicer? Affirmations and writing are a great start.

  4. Take care of yourself.

    If you are feeling down, in a funk or dealing with a challenging change, remember to take care of yourself. When you are filled up, you will have a clear and strong mind to overcome the challenging changes in life. Pick your three. Think about three things you can do on a consistent basis and do them. Mine: yoga, green drink and silence/alone time. Also, remember this doesn’t mean you have to do it alone. Asking for help when you need it is part of taking care of yourself too.

  5. Keep doing the work.

    Change will likely not happen over night. Work towards your goals and keep the momentum. Continue to live in the moment, feel your feelings, and show up for yourself and passions.

  6. Practice patience.

    Time will heal. Breathe. My favorite is Dr. Andrew Weils 4-7-8 breathe. And remember change will even change.

How do you deal with change? What practices above resonated with you? We would love to hear from you!

 
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Reaching Your Goals in 2019. Three Guiding Principles to Make This Your Year

“First we create our habits, then our habits create us” -Buddha 

Photo by  Maddi Bazzocco  on  Unsplash

 Resolutions. This. Is. The. Year.  

The year to set the resolutions and actually stick with them. But what makes this year any different from those other years? The other unmet resolutions? Why will this year be different?  

Unfortunately, the odds of sticking with your resolutions throughout the year are not in your favor. According to U.S. News, 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail by February.  

Whether you want to excel in your career, lose weight, exercise more, eat healthier, save more money, or wake up earlier, sticking with this until the end of the year is no easy task.  

So what is the ‘key’ to sticking it out? In my opinion there are three foundational principles necessary in order to reach your New Years Goals: 

1. Forming habits  

2. Training your brain to make those habits stick

3. Supporting your habits

Forming Habits

Why are habits important when it comes to Goals? 

Think about the habits you have now (both good and bad). You likely don’t need to think about these tasks or actions. They come naturally, and you are able to do them on autopilot.

For example, when you get up to go to work, you just do it (unless you are sick or playing hooky). There is no dialogue going on in your head about how or when you will do it. Additionally, that analytical part of your brain isn’t trying to justify or argue why you should or shouldn’t go to work. You just do it. Or what about on the drive to work?  Are you thinking about how you should get there, or what time you should leave? Mostly likely, not, this has become a habit, and it's ingrained in your brain. The neural pathway has been made. Driving to work is easy. You may even zone out and not remember the drive once you get to work. How about making coffee in the morning? Taking a shower? Putting on make-up? Or other daily tasks that have become a habit? These often come with little to no thought. Automatic.  

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When you think about habits, picture a trail that has been formed in a field or perhaps a hiking trail. This is the path you will usually take. It’s already been created and it’s easier to use this path versus going off the trail and making a new path. However, the new path is what you need in order to create the new habits in your brain.  

Training your brain to make those habits stick

The good news is that, yes, its possible to create new habits. Your brain has the ability to change. Also known as neuroplasticity, your brain is able to form new pathways in order to create new habits. So, if you want to create a new habit you have to repeatedly do a task.

For example, if one of your goals is to loose weight, you will need to incorporate some type of exercise into your routine. If exercising is new to you and your routine, it will be difficult to stick with this new activity. Think of it as starting a new trail off to the side. Trekking through 3 foot tall grass, rocks, and possible uphill terrain may not be as enticing as that already made smooth trail to the side.  The first time, the second time, third time, or even the fiftieth time you walk this new path may not be as smooth as the original. But by continually walking the same path over and over again (in this example exercising on a consistent basis), it will soon form a new path as easily traveled as the original. The unfortunate fact, is that the original trail (not working out) still exists and you can easily go back to the old habit and forget about the new trail (your new neural pathway aka your new exercise habit).

According to some sources it takes 3-6 months to form a new habit. What do you do in the meantime, while you are in the process of creating these new habits? How do you stay committed and motivated, so that you can reach your goals?  

Supporting Your Habits

Below are five tips to support you as you work towards your goals this year.

1. Figure out a step by step plan for completing your habits.  

How are you going to fit this into your routine? How will you make time for it? How can you make it a non-negotiable? Put it on your calendar.  

 2. Get accountable. Find a buddy, a partner to keep you accountable.  

This is lower on the totem poll as far as accountability goes, but it’s a start. The problem, is that there is no real objective consequences if you fail. Also, your accountability partner may fall off the wagon, then what? This can work, and is a starting point, but there are better options.  

 3. Invest some money: get more accountable

Join a course, an online program, a gym, a class, a boot camp, etc.  This can be not only motivating, but the monetary component is the extra push to keep you at it.

 4. Hire a coach

Get 1:1 advice, support and accountability by a trained coach. Monetary commitment plus individual accountability is a recipe for success.

 5. Use your senses to stay motivated. 

Visualize what is will feel like, look like, when you achieve your goals. What positive changes will come with your new goal?  

 6. Become the person you want to be today.  

What type of person will you be once you achieve x? What will you do? What will you feel like? Start telling yourself you are already there. For example, who will you be once you loose weight? (you’ll probably be a person who eats healthy foods and exercises regularly, right? So do that now.)  

Please stay tuned to Calm in the Chaos for upcoming events and programs. If you are interested in 1:1 coaching. Please sign up here for a free 50 minute goal setting session.