What do you want to stop doing?

Hello friends!

I am getting ready for my trip to the mountain this weekend so things are crazy (to say the least). I wasn’t sure if I would have time to write about this week’s burning question but I wanted to give it a shot. This week’s inquiry:

What do you want to stop doing?

Now, I could have definitely written about some heavy stuff I want to stop doing in my life, but since last week was a deep topic, I figured this week could be more on a practical (but still really important) tip.

I want to stop spending so much time online.

Ok, wow I just said it, I actually put it out there! Does that mean my computer is going to explode in my face, or that the online coven of powerful internet goddess will blacklist me forever? Probably not, but admitting that I spend too much time online is really tough for me so bear with me. What started as a fun distraction from work and school has seriously drained WAY too much of my time, leaving me feeling like I just wasted three hours of my life.

Now don’t get me wrong, the internet is one of the most amazing things in the world. For real. It has connected me with fantastic people, enriched my academic experience, given me a incredible political education and has allowed me to share my life, identity and space in this world.

But it has also sucked tons of my time away from more important endeavors. It has hypnotized me into reading/looking at/blankly staring at articles, pictures, tumblrs, facebook statuses and other things that don’t satisfy me at my core. How much time can one spend on Google Reader before everything starts looking the same? How many recipes can you browse before you are so overwhelmed, you end up not cooking anything at all? How many articles on inspiration and motivation can you read before you forget the most important part – actually applying those things to your real life.

And that’s just the thing. While I appreciate all of the beauty, fun and inspiration the online world(s) give me, I lose the beauty, fun and inspiration of my offline world in the process. Spending hours reading travel blogs while never using that time to hop on a bus and see where it takes me bothers me and makes me sad. And while I won’t ever stop reading blogs, or saving beautiful images to my desktop, I want to take that energy and effort away from the isolated experience of me and the computer and into the universal community experience of shared moments with others and with nature.

Once a month, for the three days I am up in the mountains of Santa Cruz, I am completely offline. No twitter updates, no Facebook statuses, not even a single e-mail. And you know what? It is a time of complete joy. Without the temptation/obligation of being connected to everything and everyone, I am free to enjoy what really matters to me: catching the sunrise, hiking in the forest, sacred song and spending time connecting to like-minded community. I am allowed to be completely immersed in the world, without the internet zapping my energy.

So that is what I want to stop doing. Stop spending so much time in the online world and more time in the offline one. I am implementing “switch-off sundays” again and I have installed Leech Block as a step toward spending less time on the computer. Eventually, I want to be off the computer every weekend but we’re taking baby steps over here.

What is your relationship to the online world? And what would you like to get rid of?

 

The Burning Question: What Boat Do You Need to Burn?

Hi readers, I thought I would branch out a little bit and share in Danielle LaPorte’s “the burning question” series. Every once in a while, she sends out a question for us all to reflect on and share.

This week’s question: WHAT BOAT DO YOU NEED TO BURN?

A ton of stuff came up while reading this post. All were things that have served me in the past, but no longer do. And while I could write about a bunch of them, I know we don’t have that much time so here is one that has been feeling really icky for quite some time:

BEING NICE TO EVERYONE, ALL THE TIME.

I was raised to be a “nice” girl, to always be polite and smile often. To never show my feelings of disagreement or (especially) of anger. My insecurities through adolescence made me believe that if I wasn’t nice to everyone all of the time, no one would like me. I wouldn’t have lots of friends and I wouldn’t be validated. Many of those limiting beliefs have been carried with me, across the country and across a decade. I now find myself smiling when I don’t feel like it, laughing at jokes that I don’t think are funny and not speaking up for myself as often as I would like. I keep a lot of my feelings to myself (or to my husband and kitty, who get an earful), even when I know I need to let them out. Being a kapha to the core, most people can pick up on my loving nature. And don’t get me wrong, 95% of the time I am that super compassionate, motherly, caring and gentle woman. It’s just the 5% leftover that gets left behind, hidden away for a more “appropriate” time that kills me.

Of course, there is no right or wrong time/place for your emotions. And although being sweet, passive and accommodating has made socializing and creating relationships easy, I know it hasn’t attracted the right kinds of folks into my life. I can easily think of half a dozen toxic relationships I have had in the past (uh, hello “best friend” who bailed on my bridal shower and couldn’t even call?) and even further issues of all-around yuckiness that have consistently resurfaced from me not always speaking my truth.

The thing is, I DO like being a nice person. I get along with folks really well and I am one of the most laid back people I know. But when something is bothering me, someone is getting on my nerves, or I just know that something isn’t resonating right, I need to burn that “nice or bust” boat and just speak from the heart.

It won’t always be easy. But I will be sharing my authentic self, for better or worse. I need to let go of that boat which no longer serves me and make space for 100 percent of who I truly am.

So, it’s your turn: what boat do you need to burn?

motivational mondays!

happy monday friends!

i am here alone with the kitty while my husband is at a meeting so do you know what that means? first season of the office on netflix!

here is some awesomeness for your week:

the strange and interesting people at high existence posted a great article on 50 life secrets and tips including: memorize something everyday, develop the ability to forgive and do what you love…this list is great!

this young mandolin player from india creates such beautiful melodies.

this rice pudding recipe comes from the highly-anticipated website (well, at least for us vegan nerds) xgfx! xgfx is an awesome site of vegan AND gluten free community and has not only a great collection of recipes but forums and other ways of connecting. yes!

and i will leave you with this cruel summer mixtape that got me through cleaning the house today. enjoy!

*magical image by ryan mcginley.

motivational mondays!

happy monday friends!

today was a busy and productive day and i am about to fall asleep on my laptop. but before i do, here are some things floating around the interweb that caught my fancy this week…

 

poppy and leo have posted a great april mixtape. i listened to it this weekend while writing some articles and it was so relaxing.

 

this chickpea, spinach and tomato soup recipe from my beloved herbivoracious looks amazing! i can’t wait to try it this week.

 

one green planet featured one of my favorite bloggers bonzai aphrodite talking about the basics on feeding your vegan baby. this is awesome and there needs to be more of this in our online health community!

 

and i will leave you with a beautiful poem by the brilliant jen lemen:

 

Love Will Find You Out

It’s okay to fall apart.
You don’t have to know the answers.
All those pieces you’ve been holding for so long while you raced around your life looking for the last roll of scotch tape, go ahead, let them fall.
Let them fall.
Every last piece.

It’s okay to scramble.
You don’t have to be calm now.
All those plans you’ve been stringing together like a macaroni necklace in kindergarten–
every last one is beautiful, so beautiful, so go ahead.
Keep grabbing at everything you ever wanted and always feared you’d never have.
Every last beautiful dream.

It’s okay to hope against hope.
This is not a time to be reasonable or rational.
Run, run as fast as you can against the tide that is crashing down now.
When the last wave sweeps over you
and every hope has been dashed
You will still be here, right here
and you will not be sorry you tried to make all your sorrows disappear.

It’s okay to cry.
Even if you are a man. Even if you are a mother. Even if you feel each tear
as an accusation against your strength, your resolve, your natural equilibrium.
Cry in the car. Cry in the shower.
Cry in bed when no one is listening or looking.
Cry when you kiss the kids goodbye for school.
Cry when you do the dishes.
Berate yourself for not being able to get it together
and then cry anyway.
How else will you know you lived, if not for these tears
reminding you were not made of metal, wood or steel
after all?

It’s okay to be lost.
Throw away the map. Leave the keys in the car.
Get out and walk.
Forget about everything you ever knew.
Crumple up those directions and move now from memory
The memory of your heart
The memory of your breath
The memory of that one time you laughed so hard you cried
The memory of that one kiss, the one that left you longing
to be loved for ever and ever.

At the end of your unraveling,
you will look down and see your own feet
that have carried you so, so far
and you will decide for once that it is okay
to sit down
to rest
to hold out your hands
to lift up your head
to open your heart
to the possibility that you were never alone after all
not for one minute

That Love was right there
in her terrible silence
not quite sure how to say it so you would believe her
that you were a thing of rare beauty on the earth
That She still has your macaroni necklace
That She’s been following you around,
making maps of all the places you’ve been lost,
so you’d know how to get back when the time came
to put it all to rest.

Go ahead, be disappointed.
Nothing turned out how you hoped.
Sit under a tree and tell me the whole of it
and I won’t say a word.
I won’t say a single word.

This is the secret nobody knows.
All these days Love carried my heart in her heart.
I was her favorite, even as I cried,
and now I am sitting under her tree
listening to you
the way she listened to me
while I swore she was never ever there.

It’s okay to feel lonely.
At the end of your wanderings
when there is no more scotch tape
and you can’t find your macaroni necklace of dreams anywhere
your heart will trace an unpredictable path
to this place and you will have just enough courage
to let Love tell you the terrible beautiful truth
of how loved you were
and how even now, at the end of everything
it’s not too late.

 

 

mindful media: elizabeth gilbert on nurturing creativity

hello readers!

sorry we didn’t have a motivational mondays post this week, i just got back from my herbal intensive weekend (which i still have to tell you all about!) and things have been hectic. my husband got a new job this week so i am trying to get used to the schedule and responsibilities that are changing.

anyway, i watched this talk from elizabeth gilbert on nurturing creativity and it really resonated with me. if you don’t know who elizabeth is, she wrote the now ridiculously famous book eat pray love and the more recent book on marriage committed. she discusses the pitfalls that creative people encounter and how to release yourself from that stress. i love the way she describes the creative process, that it is divinity that flows through you and not something disjointed that you only created yourself.  it is a truly inspiring talk!

motivational mondays are here!

hello all,

well, this weekend was wonderful, with lots of dancing, laughing and prayer but i am now in a slump with achy bones, the remnants of my cold still lingering and a bout of the blues.

so i thought that since monday is usually the day reserved for dread and gloom, i would start sharing inspirations from the past week.

videos, articles, poems…anything and everything that gets us moving and shaking! because we all need a little push on mondays, right?

 

this week i have some awesomeness to share:

 

this video is from yogamint (which is a great website and is worth checking out) and features two of my favorite things: vegan truffles and meditation!

 

mark bittman, a seasoned food critic and author, presented this talk on the environmental consequences of meat production and consumption and what is wrong with the way we eat. he is clear and concise and packs the last century of the history of food in only a few minutes!

 

and last but not least, the amazing goddess leonie from goddess guidebook has shared her first podcast! she includes an affirmation and a short meditation.

 

i hope this new series will make your week better, brighter and more full of joy!