NEW CLASS ALERT: Introducing SoulFit Every Tues/Fri from 8:15-9:15a
@ Soul Tree Yoga, Simpson Studio | 422 E Simpson St, Lafayette CO
*Begins Fri, Aug 2nd
This class will quickly become your favorite safe AND strengthening full body workout. Fueled by functional movements, mindful breathing, and body awareness – you will leave feeling empowered and much stronger – physically, mentally, and emotionally. You will be coached to push yourself safely to the edge of your fitness abilities, and grow as a Yogi on or off your mat. SoulFit is driven by movements that support Yogis feeling stronger and safer in their practice, including moderate intensity interval training and a variety of exercises (weights and other equipment may be included!). Expect to optimize your health, uplift your mood, increase your metabolic rate, and improve your overall stamina. Add some smiles and sweat into the mix, and you have your complete 60-min SoulFit workout (including your warm up and cool down!). Tennis/Running shoes highly recommend. All levels of fitness are welcome!
$15 Drop-in, Punch-Passes, and Soul Tree Memberships Accepted!
Check out this video here to learn more about SoulFit.
I am SO excited to be introducing this crucial and fundamental class to my students. Interval training and functional movements are essential to improve overall health and fitness, and I have experienced their results personally in my practice and in my life over the last several years! This is why I created SoulFit. SoulFit gives you something that yoga alone simply cannot; it feeds and strengthens your physical body, mental self, and touches your soul so that you can empower and complement how you feel in your every day Earthly life. Feeling strong and safe while MOVING through life, on or off your mat, is imperative to lower your risk of injury, increase your longevity, and improve your enjoyment of it all along the way! Give yourself a MINDFUL power-and-confidence-boost along with your yoga practice, and try out this awesome new class with me!
Your belly is the space between your chest and your pelvis. Your pelvis begins where your belly ends as the lower portion of the trunk of the human body. Your abdomen (otherwise known as the “belly” or “gut”) is home to your digestive organs. Your pelvis (otherwise known as the “hips”) is home to your reproductive organs. These areas together hold great influence over the functions and systems of the connected Body and Mind.
We know there are millions of neurons in the gut that directly influence our mood, behavior, and perceivable experiences. This mesh of neurons is called the enteric nervous system (ENS) and can operate largely on its own, independent from the brain or spinal cord. Because of this, the gut (ENS) is frequently referred to as the “second brain”.
The gut is also home to bacteria and other mircroorganisms intrinsic to our health and our susceptibility to disease. To encourage a healthy and balanced gut flora, it is essential (but sometimes not the most convenient) to eat a wholesome, clean diet. If we have a “happy” gut with a healthy array of bacteria – our overall mood, health, and vitality will correlate and reflect that. If we do not, we will surely feel the residue of an unhappy belly throughout the web of ourBody and Mind. A belly without diverse bacteria may cause a long list of digestive issues, autoimmune disorders, pain conditions, skin irritations, nutrient malabsorption, and may even affect the brain with fatigue, depression, anxiety, mood/behavioral disorders, and more.
We feel feedback and sensations (satiation, bloat, hunger, pain, anxiety, etc.) in our gut in response to the quality and amount of food we eat or don’t eat; we also feel sensations because of a variety of external stimuli. We may remember experiencing a “gut response” to a specific event or situation in the past – a “gut response” that was subtle or perhaps significant and created an inner feeling orpresence in the belly. The “gut response” may show up as butterflies, knots, turning upside down, or even just feeling really relaxed and calmed. The belly and the brain are constantly communicating in this way with each other mostly through the intelligent pathway of the vagus nerve, which carries the parasympathetic response to vital organs and muscles in the Body. Basic ways to strengthen and improve this connection involve yoga, deep breathing, “cold blasting”, and maintaining a healthy gut flora.
The same general concept goes for the pelvis, as well. Women will be affected by the enjoyment of their menstrual cycles just as much as both men and women will be affected by the health and regularity of their bowel movements. It is important for men and woman alike to hold a neutral pelvis while performing daily activities (instead of tilting too far forward arching the low back or tilting too far backward slouching the spine) because it acts as the foundation. The everyday alignment of the pelvis will directly impact the sensations in the hips, back, and neck. I predict we would experience lower pain and discomfort of these areas if we practiced and embodied a natural, neutral alignment.
We have all experienced how the difference of pain to pleasure in these areas impact our overall well-being and Life satisfaction.
So…what does all of this mean?
We have spoken about the Body/Mind relating to the Belly/Pelvis, but what about the connection to Spirit? Energetically, I see the seam where the belly meets the pelvis as the central point of gravity in the human body, where the essential connection to Mother Earthbelow is first established and harnessed within. We can feel and cultivate how connected we are with the Earth through the spaces in the belly, the pelvis, and even stemming further down into the legs and the feet. In my yoga classes and workshops, I always speak to the pelvis, the pelvic floor, the pelvic bowl, the belly, the core, the legs, and the feet to increase our inner-awareness of these parts by activating them and also by consciously groundingthe energy down.
If we are too tight or restricted in our Belly/Pelvis, we will not only have a hard time grounding down energetically, but we will also physically through difficulties eliminating waste. We may also suffer from fulfillment sexually if we are too restricted or blocked in this area; in severe cases, this may even show up as abdominal pain or pelvic pain.
It is natural in some occasions for the body to hold onto heavy amounts of stress, trauma, and tucked-down-and-away-never-to-be-felt-again emotions in the Belly and Pelvis. These emotional blocks have direct influence over our physical health.
Alternatively, if we aretoo open or loosein our belly/pelvis, we may feel quite sluggish or lazy. We may also feel unable to engage our core and our pelvic floor properly; this may lead physically to incontinence and energetically/emotionally to over-consuming sexual urges or food cravings.
It is also natural to have desires.
But, for optimal health and healing, balance is a necessity.
In Tantric traditions, your belly and pelvis inhabit the first 2 Chakras (energy centers) of your body. Your 1st Chakra (Root Chakra) is in your pelvis (located at the base of the spine in the perineum) and is your place of stability and safety. Your 2nd Chakra (Sacral Chakra) is in between your lower abdomen and lower back (located a few inches under the belly button) and is your place of sexuality, emotions, and desires. The element that relates to the Root Chakra is Earth (grounded, strong, solid), and the element that relates to the Sacral Chakra is Water(fluid, flowing, flexible).
You can feel how fundamental these two centers of the body are in order for us to continue to heal and evolve and grow.
So…how do I embody a healthy, balanced Belly & Pelvis?
You must first learn how to engage AND release these areas.
I find it is so important for humans to learn how to use the muscles of their core/pelvis and then learn how to let them go. You can experiment yourself with these actions through specific exercises to engage, then perform meditations/massages to release – feeling the polarity of these two extremes and resting somewhere in the everyday neutral, soft but strong.
I find it is also very important to seek out energetic and spiritual support to help find balance and healing from either extreme.
Everything that shows up physically has a spiritual correlation.
Shamanically, I treat and encourage the healing of the spiritual illness – the root of the illness at the very subtle layers of Self.
For those of you who know me personally, know that I am deeply connected to this area of the body because of my own in-depth experiences and healing journey. The unveiling of pelvic pain and its many layers has played a big part of my Soul Path and Soul Purpose since day 1. It has bestowed infinite wisdom on me that I would not have received otherwise. It has opened doors and propelled me on a vast and humble path of being in service to Spirit, the Greatest Good, and the Highest Truth.
I feel blessed to even write this today.
Your Belly and your Pelvis together hold ancient, primal wisdom that once unlocked, can impact the trajectory of your Life – of your Health, of your Healing, and of your entire Well-being!
Aho – So be it! <3
With Love Always,
Surrender to Soul Wellness
Owner, Yoga Teacher, Chef, Shamanic Energy Healer
For more access to: tools that aid in the Health, Healing, and Richness of your LifeORmore information onIntuitive Divine Love Healings (in person or long distance), visit my website here.
You can easily bless your home (or any space) through your thoughts, words, and actions.
STEP ONE: Begin at your front door or the entrance to your space. As you walk in, look around and start to mindfully walk the perimeter of the room, slowly making your way through each part of your home.
STEP TWO: Gaze at your space with the feeling and the thoughts you wish to reflect onto your space – peace, comfort, safety, healing, etc. (You may choose to carry your favorite crystal or burn your favorite herb or wood as you do this.) Invite an inner feeling of Love and hold the clear intention to Bless in your heart center.
STEP THREE: Sounds are a powerful tool that create our reality. Words, songs, and incantations can be a promising way to deliver a potent Blessing. Here is an incantation I have used that is quite simple but effective: “Bless this house. Bless this home. Heal this house. Heal this home. Love this house. Love this home.” You may repeat this as many times as you feel called as you walk around each room, being sure to walk the edges and corners. You may also replace the words house/home with space/place or any other word(s) that feels right. It may feel right for you to touch certain objects in your space, or move your hands in an organic magical way as you repeat the incantation. I would recommend repeating the incantation at least 3 times all the way through out loud with conviction, certainty, and feeling.
STEP FOUR: Once you have made it through the entire space, return to the center of the space or to the center of your home. Close your eyes and breathe for several moments into this Blessing that you have bestowed into your space. Thank yourself, and notice what you feel. Record any experience or reaction as you feel called to.
I hope you are enjoying this healing, dark time of year as the sun shines less and the moon shines more.
I used to really dislike winter…you know…the cold, the lack of sun, the longer nights. But recently, I have found the sheer beauty and comfort in being home cozy, rested, reflective, and mostly in the dark.
The photo above was taken just as the season was changing to fall…I am in Rocky Mountain National State Park surrounded by mountain air, water, sunshine, and rock. I love this image because it beautifully shows the balance between light and dark, and also because there is an awesome orb glowing with the color of my Lifeforce – bright blue! 😀
The seasons are a great example of the entire spectrum available to us in the Universe. We have spring/summer (the light side) and fall/winter (the dark side). For most of my life, I was labeling or judging the dark (winter) as “less-than” instead of viewing it as an equal part of the greater whole.
The distinction between light and dark can be compared to many oppositions and reflections that are parts of one total whole….good and bad, self and other, earth and universe… there are an infinite amount of examples. When we open our perceptions to see the totality of each experienced spectrum, we also open to the beauty and the healing in each and every part. One gives definition to the other. We know there would be no light without dark, no good without bad, no self without other, and no earth without the universe.
Through our perception do we actually create each experience we have.
Through our perception do we actually create the Universe.
And the Universe always responds.
Shamanically, it is believed that we actually dream the world into being. I first learned this from teacher Sandra Ingerman. We dream the world into being through our thoughts, beliefs, actions, and perceptions. Because we are all a part of the Universe, we are all co-creating this world together. Individually, we have our personalized belief systems for which we base our own perceptions and actions around. And yes, surely some overlap with the “collective” as well. The “collective” is defined by me as being the Universal “way” dreamed into all of our beings by centuries of programmed beliefs, actions, and behaviors of mankind.
When the veil of illusion lifts away, when you begin to SEE the truth of your reality – things actually become a bit lighter and certainly clearer! We consciously begin to understand our most in depth under-the-surface workings, our unique code to how we function and perceive reality. You can call this getting to know our subconscious or unconscious Self. And, we actually build the foundation for our Life through our subconscious and unconscious Self – these parts we are mostly unfamiliar with.
We certainly dream our world into being through our deepest parts such as these…
Give yourself a moment to look within yourself for your answers:
With awareness, gaze around you…shift your perspective so that you may be able to SEE the whole…then ask yourself…
How does my home space reflect me, both in feeling (vibe) and appearance (cleanliness & organization)?
How does my work reflect me?
How do the actions I have taken reflect me?
How does my experience of yesterday reflect me?
How does my attitude about tomorrow reflect me today?
How am I thinking, feeling, acting and how does that reflect this perceivable moment right now?
Our perception and perspective begins with us, always.
We create our Life because we are Life!
We create our experience because we are the Creation!
We are Creation itself as it witnesses itself!
We are a unique and valued part of the whole of the Universe.
So often in today’s society we have completely lost our personal relationship to the food we eat. More specifically, we have lost our connection and lost our gratitude for how our food is grown, where it is grown, how it travels to us, and most of the time even how it is cooked before we eat it. Generally speaking, food as we know it exists only right before it enters our mouths. ☹
There is DEEP healing in not only how we interact and respect our food, in not only the quality of the food we choose to eat, in not only how our food was grown, but in the ENTIRE process of eating. For most of us, that is the shopping, preparing, cooking, eating, cleaning cycle that occurs when we touch, infuse, and respect our food by preparing it ourselves.
We become humbled by this process, because you are right – it is far from “convenient” in today’s world. Although, convenience and health can be two opposing things. Maybe for some of us, we are able to have our own gardens and grow our own food, or buy from a local farmer. This year, I have harvested cucumbers, romaine, green leaf, watermelon, zucchini, squash, herbs, and more!
There is something really profound about caring for your food as it grows before it even hits your fridge.
But, we are really blessed either way.
We have a surplus of grocery stores around us carrying healthy & organic produce, meat, and anything we could possibly need or even want. I do not have to grow all my own food because there are plenty of talented organic farmers around doing that for me (thankfully). I can literally walk to a grocery store from my house and buy clean, nutrient-dense food. How awesome is that!
As the season’s shift, it is a beautiful time to slow it down, check in, and pay attention to the small joys in our Earth life – like preparing or truly enjoying a delicious meal. The turn of the seasons is a beautiful time to honor the fall harvest – whatever you are harvesting (however subtle it may be).
And no matter the season, the food we choose to put into our bodies as fuel is directly related to our level of health and our potential level of health. You have probably heard the saying “You are either fighting or feeding disease with every bite”. I realize this can be quite overwhelming because we are habitual creatures, and it may be hard to break those habits. BUT, there are 4 simple principles I teach so that you can improve the quality of the food you eat AND improve your relationship to the food you eat as well.
4 Simple Ways to Improve Your Health:
Cut back on processed foods (foods in the middle of the grocery isles – anything boxed, packaged, etc.). Most of these foods have no nutritional content, and they are filled with sugars, grains, artificial flavors & colorings, preservatives, GMOs, and more icky ingredients. Be sure to check the nutrition label for sneaky ingredients that could feed disease.
Cut back on gluten, dairy, and refined sugars & fats. Simply put, these will absolutely correlate with the levels of inflammation and toxicity in your body. Plus, nowadays there are amazing healthy alternatives.
Have respect for your food! Honor where it’s been before it hits your plate – it matters. Taking a moment before you eat at a restaurant or at home to offer your thanks and your love to the food can completely shift how your body will digest and metabolize it. This is specifically important if you do not buy, touch, cook, or connect in some way to your food before you eat it. Your intention is everything!
Have compassion! Be kind to yourself. The beauty is in the process…
CONTEMPLATE or JOURNAL:
Am I connecting with the food I eat? Am I honoring my food? Am I honoring my health?
How can I improve my connection to my food?
What are 1 or 2 simple changes I can make that will help me honor my food more authentically?
What is a personal, reasonable goal for my own Conscious Eating in a year from now?
Conscious Eating Meditation
Eat a meal with wholehearted, conscious awareness.
Sounds simple, right?
You can find the right time to do this no matter where you are. Trust that you will know when is the “right time”.
Give yourself permission to set aside the everyday worries of your world.
Give yourself permission to let go of the grasps of the mind. Let go of the mind’s tendencies to attach, resist, or judge; and instead, simply allow yourself to experience the present moment in your body. This is important: Put aside all distractions (tv, phone, radio, etc). You will not need them.
Allow yourself to become immersed in the sensations of eating. Indulge in the smell of your food. Taste the flavors as they interact with each other in your mouth. Feel the changing textures as you chew and swallow. Let this be a full body experience. Allow your body to experience the experience of eating with gratitude, with love, and with presence. Allow every bite to dive you deeper into the magic of eating consciously.
Notice what shifts; notice what comes up; notice what evolves; notice how you feel when you finish.
Please reach out with comments, questions, or if I can support you in any way through your journey of Conscious Eating. Many Blessings.
I’d say it’s officially SPRING – with maybe even a touch of summer (at least here in CO :P). Perhaps you feel the increase of energy that goes along with this change of season. I know I am! For me, it tends to manifest as an extra chatty mind or busy “to-do” lists. This could (and probably will!) show up in a different way for you. Regardless of how this propulsion into a warm, active season is revealing in your life, we could all invite in a little less “DO” & a little more “BE”. We can then find our own unique balance of these two energies (DO & BE) as they merge in our everyday life. These last few weeks have brought me back to this simple, but profound practice.
So – what is the difference between doing vs. being?
Doing is the action you take in the world. We are doing when we turn a thought or belief into our physical reality by action. Mowing the lawn, tending to the garden, driving our car, working at the office, preparing our dinner, etc. – these are all actions we “DO” – can you feel into the energy of doing?
Being naturally occurs when we are completely present – when our entire awareness is rooted in our body (not in our thinking mind!). We are being when we experience every sensation, every emotion, every action, even every stream of thought as the experience unfolds, fully immersed in that very moment. It is actually impossible to “BE” when we are in our mental space, having conversations within our own mind – spiraling thoughts around & around. Being requires us to feel, not to think. Practicing yoga, talking a walk out in nature, listening to waves crash on the beach, eating a meal without distraction, meditating peacefully, etc. – these are all experiences for which we “BE” – can you feel into the energy of being?
Now – we are humans functioning in a present-day society. We have lives to life & things to do. But, we also have the ability to gift ourselves with each experience as it occurs, moment by moment. It IS possible to be fully present & aware as we go about our daily tasks. It is also possible to (if we need to) pencil in time slots so that we can BE – go for a walk, practice yoga, or whatever else is suitable for you! I know – it seems simple as written text but is much more challenging to invite in as a part of our reality. That is why it is a practice, always ?.
Start to contemplate: Ask yourself how you can incorporate more being during this shift into activity. Then ask yourself how you can be in all that you do. Maybe journal about it, chat with a friend, or write a comment & let me know how it’s going!
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