Posts tagged paying attention
7 Paths to Essential Self-Care

*Note: in honor of International Self-Care Day, here is a new and improved version of an earlier post. 

As a coach I’m always looking for good metaphors to help make sense of things we humans keep tripping over or bumping into. For instance all know that in case of an emergency, we need to secure our own oxygen masks before we try and help others. If we can't breathe then we are useless to everyone - including ourselves. Daily living in the 21st century can feel relentless and stressful and often keeps our adrenals running so high that our bodies think they are in an actual, ongoing emergency and that ain’t good. What’s a girl to do? For starters, embrace new ways turning down the stress and amping up the self-care. Self-care is not selfish. It’s the metaphorical oxygen mask. Here are 7 ways you can you can add in more self care, without breaking the bank or even breaking a sweat (mostly).

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Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Lately I've been thinking about what's real and what's perceived. We all know that many of the things we see on social media are chosen or curated to get the ultimate response. And while sometimes we feel inspired, connected or amused, lots of times we get triggered into "compare and despair" and end up feeling like our lives, our bodies and our selves are somehow lacking. We keep scrolling through, trying to shake off the feeling, forgetting that we're seeing only only a part of a story, not the big picture. It's not a whole truth. 

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9 reasons why you need to take Yourself on a wellness retreat

I am leading my Yes, THIS! Wellness Retreat again in October with my friend and colleague Dr. Louise Rose and I would love for you to join us. It's on the Oregon Coast (so beautiful in the fall!) and it's the PERFECT place to engage in some exquisite self-care.  If you've never taken yourself on a retreat before (and even if you have) I urge you to consider this one

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Self-Compassion is Cool

Has this ever happened to you? You're late for an appointment and looking for parking. You end up driving right by a prime spot in front of your destination because there's a car on your tail and you feel bad about abruptly stopping, so you decide to drive around the block and go back for the spot but when you get there someone else has already grabbed it. This happened to me last week and my first reaction was to say to myself (using the unkind voice that lives in my mind), "Lisa, you idiot! You should have taken the spot when you first saw it." But lately I've been training myself to notice that unkind voice and what it's saying so I caught the thought pretty quickly. I consciously switched my inner dialogue and told myself "Lisa, it's OK.  You are not an idiot. I love you." I immediately started to feel better.

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Notes on turning 50

A couple of years ago, with the big 5-0 on my horizon, I found myself in a bit of a meltdown. On paper my life was pretty awesome. I was married to a great guy, had 2 healthy, reasonably well-adjusted teenagers, I was living in an old craftsman house in a city that I loved and working from home with hours that I chose myself. I was healthy, had an active social calendar and regular trips to NY & LA. But as I got closer to that big birthday I started feeling lost. 50 sounded so BIG. So old. So middle aged. It was doing my head in.

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Why self-care is more important that ever right now.

No mater what your beliefs are, it's impossible to avoid seeing that this country is in the middle of some crazier than usual bullsh*t. It's really easy to get sucked into a sinkhole of anxiety, frustration and anger, and while sometimes those feelings can ultimately inspire action and change, they need to be balanced with some radical self-care or they will burn you out. 

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What Are You Really Hungry For?

I've been going through some stressful things of late and haven't been paying as much attention as I normally do to the way I've been eating. As a result I've gained a few pounds, my clothes are tight and I'm generally dragging. It made me think about what I'm feeling (or avoiding feeling) when I don't eat mindfully. It made me question what I am really hungry for right now. 

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5 Easy Ways to Get Ready For Fall

It's the middle of August and the middle of an "extreme heat warning" here in Seattle. Super hot summers are a relatively new thing in this town so lots of old houses like mine do not have central AC.  It's usually right around now that I start daydreaming about the cooler temps of fall and that fresh-start, back-to-school feeling I love. So, in the spirit of September's approach, I put together 5 easy ways to get ready for fall that I think you will love - even though they do not include having a pumpkin spice latte! 

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Same old, Same old?

Here's a fun fact about turning 50 (or 43 or 47 or any age after 40 really…): stuff you have done all your life can suddenly stop working the way it always has. That's right - you think you've got something wired and just like that it either explodes or just starts fizzling out. Then you're like, "WTF? I'm waking up at 3 AM? I've always slept a solid 8 hours a night", or " Hello? I've gained 10 pounds and I have not done one single thing different in the past 6 months."  Welcome to the wonderful world of aging and perimenopause.

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The 5 Paths to Essential Self-Care

As a coach I am always looking for good metaphors to help make sense of things we humans keep tripping over or bumping into. One of my favorites comes courtesy of the airline industry. We all know that in case of an emergency, we need to secure our own oxygen masks before we try and help others. If we can't breathe then we are useless to everyone - including ourselves. This is a great metaphor for real life! Daily living in the 21st century can feel relentless and stressful and often keeps our adrenals running as if we are in a constant state of emergency.

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Give Me a Break

People have their own preferences about how they like to stay informed on news and current events. My mom likes the evening news and makes a point of turning on NBC with Lester Holt every night at 6:30 PM. My husband checks his favorite blogs while he has his coffee and rarely misses a chance to watch Meet The Press on Sunday mornings. I listen to NPR when I'm cooking dinner and often use that time to check in with the world and see what's up.

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Hooked On A Feeling

Last Monday I was deep in procrastination mode. By 9:45 I had already checked Facebook 11 times, answered every possible email, folded some random laundry, checked all my favorite blogs and researched the health benefits of hemp seeds. So I started cleaning out my desk. I began sorting through the tons of important stuff (aka 'crap') that gets stuck in there. Among the artifacts inside: 4 old wallets, an ancient asthma inhaler, a 1st generation iphone, expired coupons to the hardware store and an old list I'd written on a piece of notebook paper. Remarkably the paper had survived major moves through 3 cities and 25 years. It was a list of all the things I hoped for when I "grew up".

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I Thought I Lost You

When I was pregnant with my first child, it was kind of a miracle. There was a lot of counting, waiting, praying and modern medical technique involved. But it also felt like I had, at last, been accepted into an exclusive club. I thought I would finally be "complete." I would be the woman I already was - only better. I was going to kick ass at this mothering gig.

I was wrong.

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Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

As picky as I am about my morning coffee (locally roasted, fair trade, made in a French press with plenty of organic half & half) the ritual of drinking it in my quiet kitchen is something I look forward to every day.

In fact, I kind of have a crush on creating little rituals, fun traditions and regular routines. I like knowing that there are certain things I can depend on no matter what's happening in my world. I have no idea what the calendar year will bring but every May for the last 19 years I have a potluck birthday party at Golden Gardens beach. My week may be bonkers but I know that every Friday afternoon I will remember how to breathe again at my favorite Restorative yoga class. Routine feels like an anchor in a shifting sea. The waves will come but I can find some steadiness in their midst.

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Here in My Car

What is it about being in a car that inspires meaningful conversation?

People tend to open up and spill when they are in a car. Some of the most interesting conversations I can remember have happened in cars. Like the time when my son was 4 years old asked me, "Mom, what's the name of that grown-up in the sky again"?  "You mean God?  "Yes! Is Mother Nature God's wife?"

Then there was the time in the car when he was in 3rd grade. He and his friend were talking about a kid in their class who told them that if they googled the "f word" they could see pictures…. (silent scream, mad dash from the driveway to check the parental controls on the computer).  

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Deciding to Pay Attention

I don’t know about you, but when I was a kid I often had teachers and other grown-ups tell me to stop whatever it was that I was doing in order to “pay attention."

It’s always been a challenge. But these days I am finding that it was good advice – although maybe not in the exact way they meant it at the time. Paying Attention (aka Noticing or Being Mindful) has changed my life. Paying Attentionseems so easy. Paying Attention is taught in Kindergarten. And Paying Attention is actually free. But “easy” is a subjective word. A cook might think that it's “easy” to whip up a pot of vegetable soup from memory but until you start doing it and then doing it some more it might not be so “easy.”

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