10 Ways to Have A Stress-Free Day

Statistics show the most successful people in the world are folks who optimize their days from the moment they awaken. Life offers us plenty of challenges.  Meeting them when we are tired, drained and stressed can make them feel impossible to manage.  Here are some of my favorite practices for keeping stress at bay.


Sitting quietly for 5-10 minutes before you start your morning routine can set the tone for your day.  You can meditate or do some simple breath work before rising.

(Pro-Tip: Avoid your smart phone and hold off on checking your email or social media. It can wait.)

Fact: Science has proven time and time again that your morning routine sets the rhythm for the rest of your day.


Take a few moments to do a daily affirmation or think good thoughts about your day or others. Visualizing your day going smoothly and easily will also help establish a positive outlook.

(Pro-Tip: Visualize yourself from the current moment, living the best version for this particular day.  Make it as vivid and detailed as possible.  Incorporate feelings of joy, happiness, excitement and gratitude).


Within the first 30 minutes of waking up, perform a quick exercise routine. The goal here is not “fitness”, instead it’s to increase energy and stimulate your mind to elevate mental performance for the day. Furthermore, this quick routine will help release serotonin (happy hormones) during a time where you likely used to produce cortisol (stress hormones). Shockingly, science says if you do this for just 5 days, your body will begin to identify mornings with joy rather than tension and anxiety.


Instead of wolfing down whatever’s closest and most convenient, give yourself enough time to to prepare and notice what your food looks like, tastes like, smells like and feels like.  Your digestive system will thank you.


Taking a few deep inhales and exhales can help to manages feelings of stress and anxiety during the day.

(Pro Tip: Learn Ujayi breath, it’s power stress relief tool.  Here’s how.)


Drink Me by Morgan Sessions

Staying hydrated with with water and herbal teas is a very kind act of self love and will boost your health and happiness.

The link between water and stress reduction is well documented. All of our organs, including our brains, need water to function properly. If you’re dehydrated, your body isn’t running well — and that can lead to stress.


Many of us sit for long periods of time at our workplaces and this can lead to tension and tightness in our necks, lower back and hip flexors.

Moving, standing up and doing some simple yoga exercises at your desk can help relieve tension and help you refocus on your tasks.


Eat the elephant one bite at a time. We may get overwhelmed from time to time and have numerous tasks and responsibilities at hand.  Plan accordingly, break everything down into small, manageable steps.


Driving Why Kei

We often set ourselves to auto-pilot while we navigate our commutes or our walks.  Be aware, turn off your phone and if you have a long commute, consider doing it in silence to let your brain have a break or put on soft soothing music.  Classical is a favorite of mine.

If you’re on foot,  lift your head up and don’t bury your face in your phone.  It’s a great way to avoid being hit by a car or accidentally falling into a sink hole.


When you arrive home, allow yourself to transition from work-mode to home life.  It’s important to shift gears and let the day go both physically and emotionally.



What was the best part of your day? Before you drift off to sleep, write down at least three things that went well and that you’re grateful for.  It’s a wonderful way to conclude your day.



“The end is not when things are done, it’s when they change into something new.” 

This isn’t a new idea, but it happened to be the perfect piece of information to influence my awareness at the exact moment I read it.  I’m always collecting bits of information where they meet me, in order to inform my personal sense of balance in the world.  Mind you, I’m not allowing my personal center to be swayed by outside influences, but I am adjusting my balance depending on the energies that surround me.

The idea that change is always happening and cultivating a solid core to navigate change with has been on my mind this week. The past eight days have been a whirlwind of peak career and personal highs, devastating loss and the uncertainty of the unknown.

Here is a little glimpse into the energetic weather in my life from last week:  I taught a fantastic intuition workshop to a group of wonderful people, (which was the culmination of months of hard work); I connected to and solidified a business partnership and several new friendships, attended the funeral of a friend, hung out with a few famous folks at a swanky Hollywood party, learned of the death of another lifelong friend, and on top of it all, am prepping to move house.  To say that it feels overwhelming is an understatement.

At my core, I’m absolutely okay.  I’m doing the tight rope walk of the Two of Pentacles, spinning my plates and not looking down, because finally,  I have stepped into the comfort of knowing that everything I need will be provided for in exactly the right moment.  The resources, comfort, clarity and connections I need to carry on will be provided as long as I am in tune enough with myself and life to recognize them when they arrive.

As the quote above says, endings are transformations.  We can embrace the freedom of change instead of clinging to the old and familiar in an effort to keep ourselves safe.  Change isn’t going to stop, so instead of getting dragged behind it’s inevitable occurrence, why not welcome it as a part of the natural order of things?

I acknowledge that losing a loved one is a profound change and that this post is not intended to address that kind of grief.  To try to do that here would be a disservice.  My aim is to explore the idea that change is ever present and can be more positive than we are conditioned to believe.

I know I write about letting go of the things that don’t serve our highest good pretty often, and this past week with the Libra full moon and the Sun in Taurus conjunct Uranus is the perfect environment to explore that deeply. 

What worn out ideas and dynamics can we let go of in order to flow more effortlessly in life? What ideas and attitudes can we embrace this week in order to live in tune with what comes and goes?  Can you stop fighting the “what is” and embrace it, knowing full well that we hold the key to our daily realities?

If I can help you see what’s coming in, and navigate it, please book a personal reading here: .  I would love to offer you some loving support to embrace the changes that are coming your way.

Always with you on the journey,


Living the Dream


Have you ever found yourself so deep in a funk, that low-level misery has become your new normal?  Perhaps the responsibilities of day to day living have taken you far away from the life you dreamed of as a hopeful student.  Maybe you’re not even sure what your dreams are anymore.  The disconnect between living lives we love vs. the lives we believe will bring us security is commonplace.

Last night, driving home from teaching yoga, I dropped in on my best friend.  She and her kids had just finished dinner and were in wind down mode in preparation for bedtime.  She, like me, is a single Mom and we have bonded through this shared experience.

We got to talking about what was going on in our lives, when in response to a work  dilemma she was telling me about, I asked her the question:  “What do YOU want?”  She looked at me blankly and said:  “I don’t know…” Her brow furrowed as she struggled to answer me.  I followed up with “What would you do if money were not an issue?”

My bestie is a highly educated artist, who creates beautiful things and delicious meals with an effortlessness that I only dream of having.  She is also one of the most fiscally responsible and hard working people I know. She believes however, that she will always be stuck slaving away at a day job that doesn’t come close to using her talents or fulfilling her dreams.  She exists in a place of moderate stability and financial comfort, while her soul aches for a deeper connection to the artistic pursuits she held in her heart as a younger woman.  Most of the time, her inner thoughts, ideas and feelings get tucked away because of the busy-ness of her daily life. Like so many of us, she has come to believe that the current reality of her life is the only reality possible.

Sometimes our ruts and routines become calcified because they seem safer than taking a risk and exploring new ways of thinking, making a living or being in relationship.

I asked her to remember the dreams she had for herself as a younger person, and to become crystal clear on the life she would live if she didn’t have to clock in and out every day.  We often avoid this kind of clarity, because it can be painful to realize we’re robbing ourselves of joy in exchange for what we think will bring us security.

I’m not advocating irresponsibility on a whim, I just know that in order to create the life of your dreams you have to have an idea of what it would look like.   You must be intimately familiar with what kind of life you’d lead if you had all the money you could want or need.  Then, you must carve out time in your current schedule to devote to those pursuits every single day.  Wake up early or go to bed later. Cut out time wasters like social media or television and instead devote that time to taking steps towards living your dream.

If you have no idea how to do that,  I recommend beginning with the end in mind and working backward. Break your end goal down into small steps that you can work on every day.  Your self-esteem will increase and you’ll feel more connected to your dreams if you’re actually working towards them daily.

If you do this, there will come a day in the not too distant future when you’ll be able to decide if you are ready to make the leap from your “day job” to your “dream job”. It may not happen overnight,  it may even take years, (that part is solely determined by you).  The most important thing is that you take the first step.  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr said:  “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”

Disregard the perfectionistic voice in your head that says you can’t and just get going. The plan you start out with might not be the plan that ultimately gets you where you want to be, because your plans may change as you change.  It will, however, get you out of the starting gate and on the path to greater happiness.

Make a commitment to explore new ways of thinking about what’s possible for yourself.  Beliefs are just thoughts, and thoughts can be changed (as long as you are willing to make the changes). The truth is that almost anything you desire is possible. What are you willing to give of yourself in order to create the life of your dreams? I assure you,  you can create lasting and profound change in your life by devoting just minutes a day towards your goal.

What’s your dream?  What steps can you take today to begin your journey towards living the life your soul craves?  All progress starts with taking that first step.

As always, I’m with you on the journey.

Why Develop Your Intuition?

Does it seem that you lack solutions to the issues and obstacles standing in the way of what you want to achieve?

I’d like you to feel what life might be like for you if: you no longer feel frazzled; you connect easily with potential new clients, employers, first dates, and in deeply satisfying ways with romantic partners, family and friends. You have instant access to solutions for life’s challenges, and you can navigate them with more ease and clarity. 

Society floods us with a constant stream of input and information, but we don’t always need more information to function optimally in life; we need the right information.

It’s too easy to miss the intuitive hits that come through because we’re constantly staring at our screens in information overload. That’s where intuition comes in.  

Research shows using your prefrontal cortex (the region of the brain that regulates thought in both short-term and long-term decision making) is not as effective as intuition for complex decision making.  People who go with their gut feelings and intuition are more likely to find successful outcomes to tough decisions.

To help you go from feeling stuck and overwhelmed to clear, cool and confident, I’ve created an experience based, transformational, and highly personal workshop, where you will be empowered to explore and experience the art of intuition in a more powerful, confident way.

  • Solve problems and make decisions with ease.
  • Recognize and maximize opportunities.
  • Connect with friends and loved ones more deeply.
  • Navigate job interviews, social interactions and dating with more clarity and confidence.
  • Feel confident and comfortable no matter what life throws at you.
  • Open yourself to new possibilities.

During this hands on experience, you will learn about and participate in time tested, practical tools that allow you to access, and listen more effectively to your inner voice without doubting yourself. You will learn to discern the difference between “wishful thinking”,  emotional static (from yourself and others) and reliable, actionable intuitive guidance that helps you connect, grow, and flourish in your life.

The intuition exercises I have designed focus on reading people, communication, relationships, love, success and abundance.

My aim is to demystify and deconstruct the intuitive journey, so that more of us feel confident in listening and using the strong and powerful voice that comes from deep within.

If you, or someone you know would like to navigate life with more confidence, clarity and connectedness, please join me for this game changing workshop.

I look forward to a day of exploration and discovery together!

Register Here: INTUITION WORKSHOP 4/14/19

Ain’t No April Fool

Happy April!

One of my favorite divination tools is the tarot and today is the perfect day to talk about the first card in the deck, The Fool card. The Fool card has a deeper significance than merely trickster, (or April Fool’s prankster) energy. In medieval courts, the court jester was someone who was not expected to follow the same rules as others. He could observe and poke fun. This makes the Fool unpredictable and full of surprises. He reminds us of the unlimited potential and spontaneity inherent in every moment. There is a sense that anything goes – nothing is certain and everything is unfamiliar, but exhilaratingly so.

The Fool represents the unlimited potential of the human spirit and the complete faith that life is good. The fool is no fool, but does embrace whatever life brings. His open mind, simplicity of motives and sheer exuberance leave no room for doubt or fear to creep into his thoughts. He trusts fully in his instincts and rushes forward with the imagination, creativity and innate wisdom of a child.

In readings, the Fool can signal a new beginning or unexpected change of direction – one that will guide you onto a path of adventure, wonder and personal growth. He also reminds you to keep your faith and trust your natural responses. If you are facing a decision or moment of doubt, the Fool tells you to believe in yourself and follow your heart no matter how crazy or foolish your impulses may seem.

Occasionally the Fool can signal that you’re pushing too far, too fast and that you may be acting in an unrealistic or irresponsible manner. Feeling and behaving like you’re 18 years old again might irritate the people closest to you, especially if it involves taking a risk that shocks them. The Fool is indifferent to criticism and plunges ahead without regard for consequences. All things are possible when you trust and follow your instincts.

The Fool card brings newness: jobs, travel, adventure. A sense of enthusiasm that is both infectious and beneficial to all who experience it. It is the embodiment of the idea that life is immediate and living completely in the now. It also represents financial increase and the perfect faith that financial, no matter what happens, it’s going to be okay.

If you’ve been challenged by an ongoing health issue, the Fool card is a the harbinger of improvement, remission and finding exactly the solution to recover via alternative medicine, a new treatment or even a spiritual awakening. It can also predict being forgetful or accident prone, so watch where you’re walking.

When the Fool makes it’s way into a tarot spread, you may be inspired to sample multiple spiritual traditions or rituals like dream analysis, past life exploration, tantric practices, music, sweat lodges, fasting, drugs, out-of-body experiences. The point is the experience and exploration of yourself on your quest to find a deeper understanding of who you are and what you believe.

Today is the perfect day to step into the energy of the Fool. Live in the moment, let go of expectations, trust the flow, stay open, expand your horizons, live in joy, accept your choices, be true to yourself and trust in your heart’s desire. (Just be careful not to bang your kneecap on the coffee table).

As always, I adore you and I’m with you on this magnificent, foolish journey.

Intuition, Skeptics & Science

Many folks out there are under or mis-informed when it comes to the truth about intuition and about what  I do when I provide a reading for my clients.  What images come to mind when you hear the words psychic or clairvoyant?  A gypsy with a scarf over her head, staring into a crystal ball? Or perhaps someone more modern, like Alison DuBois who was the model for the television series “Medium”?

In my experience doing this work since 2008,  I’ve observed a fair amount of skepticism, by those who don’t believe in the idea that we all possess an inner GPS that guides us through our lives; and that all “so-called” psychic mediums, clairvoyants, tarot card readers and astrologers prey on their clients and rely on cold reading skills and subjective validation.  In response to that attitude, I offer this: for a year and a half I worked for a San Francisco think tank doing predictive work with specific outcomes with an accuracy rate of 83%, which negates any reliance on cold reading or subjective validation. (83% is an amazing statistic, anything over 50% was considered highly psychic).

I’d also like to offer the idea that clairvoyance/psychic ability/intuition  is not a gift for the chosen few. Everyone who has the capacity to quiet the mind and tune in can access intuition.  My colleagues and I are not the only source of this information, though I did work hard to develop the skills necessary to use my intuition.  Prior to doing this work professionally, I studied and practiced  to become more in touch with the part of my consciousness where intuition resides.

Science posits that intuition’s origin is in our limbic brain or reptilian part of our brain. Psychology Today published an article titled “The Science of Intuition” where Kelly Turner Ph.D states that:  “Our intuition often knows what’s best for us even when our thinking minds do not understand yet what’s going on. That’s because intuition operates from the part of our brain that developed at a time when hidden dangers could jump out at us at any moment – such as a tiger hiding behind bushes.  This part of our brain became highly skilled at sensing immediate danger as well as places of safety.  However, because most of us now live a relatively safe, day-to-day existence, that part of our brain is not triggered very often, and when it is, we are not familiar with it, so we tend to ignore its messages.  However, we all still have that part of our brain and some of my patients have learned how to use it to their advantage.”

Tuning into and using our innate intuitive senses can positively affect our daily lives,  by informing our decision making and relating skills.  We make hundreds of choices daily, using the most/all of the senses that we have, and intuition is just one of them.  Often times our intuitive sense knows the right answer long before our rational minds do and we call that a “gut” feeling.  Our intuition often works faster and provides great hypothetical answers that our rational minds can then research and quantify.  In most cases, the answers and ideas that our intuition offers us turn out to be the best options in a given situation.

That’s part of the information that I provide to my clients in order to help them solve real-life issues, in addition to helping them tune in to their own intuitive sense.  Why not use all information available to us and enhance our cognitive toolkits?

Would you like to learn how to use your intuition consciously instead of just experiencing it randomly?  Click here to learn how:Intuition Workshop





Know what you know.

Greetings friends!  Please join us for an amazing, heart opening, life focusing day of intuition exploration and learning.  I have teamed up with my new best friend and business mentor Rob Barnett to bring you a workshop that will help you use your own intuitive senses in a powerful way in your real life on a daily basis.

Click here for details and registration: INTUITION WORKSHOP APRIL 14, 2019

My own intuition teacher, Laura Day helped me learn that the most successful people use their intuition consciously for their continued and constant benefit.  Wouldn’t you love to be able to have your fingers on every answer you needed in times of uncertainty or transition?

We are all highly intuitive; but have you ever longed to command your intuition consciously, instead of just experiencing it at random?

Your intuition is an operating system, always running in the background:

“I should have trusted my gut.”

“I knew what was really going on but I didn’t say anything.”

“I wanted it so badly but I still walked away.”

It’s almost a cliche; the telephone rings and you intuitively know who it is before answering. You think of a friend and bump into them at the market.  You pull down an aisle at Target just in time for the first parking space to open up.  Intuition often shows up this way, as a fleeting insight we’ll probably dismiss as coincidence, or write off as “just imagination.” But as Albert Einstein once said, “Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.”

In its effort to protect you, to keep you alive and safe, your brain can keep you from speaking up or getting what you truly want if you don’t know how to listen beyond your rationalizations. When you face an uncomfortable decision, your brain will spontaneously give you a fabulously credible rationalization for avoiding possible failure, embarrassment, or even minor discomfort.

As humans, we are master rationalizers.

First, we tend to compartmentalize problems into two options, yes or no, do it or don’t, with the choice often being the easier way out.

Second, we ignore what our heart and gut are telling us. There are 100 million neurons and every class of neurotransmitter in your gut used to process external stimuli and send signals to your brain. Your heart also receives input and sends out signals. The brain translates these signals so we can make decisions and act. It also edits, censures, and resists some of the data it receives especially if emotions are triggered.

We all have intuition but we don’t consciously listen to it, trusting only what appears to be rational in our often irrational mind. 

Science tells us that only 20 percent of the brain’s gray matter is used for conscious thoughts, while 80 percent is dedicated to non-conscious thoughts.

You can harness the intuitive voice inside yourself that has guided life’s greatest thinkers, artists and business owners. 

History’s most influential people were not any different from you, aside from one major thing: they knew how to tap into their intuition. They knew how to connect with the inner voice. The same voice that you have inside of you right now, waiting for you to answer its calling.

Your intuitive ability started growing when you were no bigger than pinky nail, and it still exists right now, waiting within you to be utilized.  What’s more, your intuition is calling out to you all the time, inviting you to connect to it because it knows what’s best for you.  It can help guide your questions, thoughts, and decisions and is waiting for you to tune in.

You might recognize when your inner voice speaks to you by the way you immediately feel completely empowered, connected and fully relaxed, no matter what your environment or surroundings are.  This feeling doesn’t have to be temporary! When you learn to harness your intuitive voice you can access this place wherever and whenever you need it.

Using your intuition consciously allows you to:


End a life of reactionary responses to external demands, and stress. Guide yourself to better moments — from the small things that matter such as getting a better parking spot, to life-changing new connections.


Reconnect with your spiritual source and let the abundant healing energies flow from you to all those you meet, love and care about.


Strengthen your once quiet voice to one of great power. Fully connect with the people around you and grow your levels of empathy far greater than what you thought possible.


Navigate through any obstacle on your path. Tune in with your psychic ability, and generate creative solutions to any problem you face — build bridges and opportunities where only struggle existed before.


Live an authentic life full of purpose. Listen to your highest and most authentic self, so you can live a heartfelt life.

You can use your inner voice consciously to create a happier, more abundant, connected life!  Come learn how on Sunday, April 14th, 2019.

As always, I’m with you on the journey.



Cultivate Your Intuition


Greetings Tribe!

Rob Barnett of Barnett Media and I have partnered to offer you a life inspiring workshop!

Rob Barnett Media: Video 193 – Intuitive Workshop in LA, Sunday 4/14 (4:16)

Life is Noisy

Intuition requires the ability to tune in.  Often, social media, the news cycle and the “normal” external pressures we cope with daily create a constant static.  Static that drowns out the frequency of your intuition.  This causes you to make decisions with your head based on what you think is logical, instead of digging deeper into what feels right in your gut.  When you learn how to quiet the noise of daily life, you will be able to tune into the wisdom of your inner voice and consciously use your intuition.

Intuition is Always Available

“I should have trusted my gut.”

“I knew what was really going on, but I didn’t say anything.”

“I wanted it so badly, but I still walked away.”

It’s almost a cliche; the telephone rings and you intuitively know who it is before answering.  You think of a friend and bump into them at Trader Joe’s.  You pull down an aisle at Target just in time for the first parking space to open up.  Intuition often shows up this way, as a fleeting insight we’ll probably dismiss as coincidence, or write off as “just imagination.”  But as Albert Einstein once said, “Imagination is everything.  It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.”

Learn How

You can harness the intuitive voice inside yourself that has guided life’s greatest thinkers, artists, and business owners. The workshop includes interactive instruction, including how to:

Access calm and ease.  Stop living in constant commotion, external demand, and stress. You’ll learn to guide yourself  — from the small things that matter such as getting a better parking spot, to life-changing new connections.

Activate your empathic sense to cultivate a greater connection with all those you meet, love and care about.

Strengthen your personal power and clarity.

Navigate obstacles on your path. Tune into situations with your intuitive ability, and generate creative solutions to any problem you face.  Build bridges and opportunities where only struggle existed before.

Live an authentic life full of purpose. Recognize the messages your intuition is sending to you and take advantage of them to create a life you don’t want to escape from.

What: Intuition Development Workshop

When: Sunday, April 14th, 2019

Register here:  Intuition Workshop


Spiritual Survival Strategies

The current political landscape often plunges me into perpetual state of emotional reactivity, angst and low level depression.  I frequently feel helpless and despondent after reading the news or social media posts about the latest atrocity committed against people of color, immigrants, our environment, and animals by forces that seem both uncontrollable and undeterred by common decency or regard for life.

I was looking for guidance (for myself) today about how to cope and didn’t find very much.  So I  wanted to offer some of my coping skills for keeping sane while existing in the current state of America.  It’s brief and general,  but I hope it it might be of service.

1. Take action.  The best way I know to make myself feel less helpless is to take action. Donate to or volunteer for organizations dedicated to the cause you’re interested in helping.  Contact your government representatives.  VOTE. We can only affect change when we make our voices heard. Other ways to help?  Step in when you see a POC or immigrant being harassed in the grocery store on the street or public transport.  Talk to them.  Offer assistance.  If you are white, don’t accept racist behavior in your white family or friends.  Educate them, challenge the status quo.  It’s up to people who have privilege to use it to help those that don’t. 

2.  Take a break from social media.  While responding to the latest outrage might feel good, it’s only momentarily soul-satisfying; and doesn’t really accomplish much in the long run.  Trump is probably going to say or do something every day that will cause a negative emotional response for many of us. We can’t allow ourselves to get stuck in a perpetual state of stress and emotional arousal and still function well in our lives.

3.  Instead – get grounded.  Become present.  Feel all the feelings that come up and allow them to pass, but find a safe space that supports you in doing so.  Time with friends and loved ones, cuddling pets, yoga, meditation, gardening and playing sports are helpful.

4.  Watch something uplifting or funny.  Laughter has the power to heal, comfort us and bring us back into our bodies and the present.  Bonus points if it’s Seth Meyers sending up the political landscape the way only he can.

5. Focus on making your corner of the world what you want it to be.  So much of what’s happening in the political landscape is a result of a lack of understanding and compassion.  We pass neighbors and don’t interact.  We get angry in traffic and flip that jerk the bird… etcetera, etcetera. When we fill the spaces we occupy with love, it has lasting and profound effects.  Being connected to your immediate community is a great way to fight otherness.

6.  Visualize the world you WANT to live in, instead of just focusing on how messed up it all is right now. Negative thoughts rob us of the wonderful things currently surrounding us. They take over and spill like ink into our thoughts.  Focus on the good.  Spend time consciously directing your thoughts in positive, or solution oriented ways.  Abraham-Hicks says that 17 seconds of pure thought is the ignition point of manifesting. If you hold a thought for 17 seconds, you set in motion that manifestation. The purpose behind this rule is to get you to think purely for 17 seconds, and to have that desire become stronger until it reaches 68 seconds.  So, instead of just ruminating in the energy of how terrible the current presidential administration is, let’s start using our collective consciousness to visualize a much better future.  If we all join together we can create change.

Please share the ways you pull yourself up out of the muck when the current state of things gets you down. I’m sending you love. We’re all in this together.  

Kondo that Sh@%!

If you’re on the internet at all, you’ve probably heard of Glennon Doyle and her wonderful organization “Momastery”.  I am a fan and follower of hers on Instagram, and was recently inspired by a post with the hashtag: “Kondo That Sh@#”.  If you don’t know what she means by that phrase please click: “Marie Kondo“.  (You’re welcome). These women are bringing us what we know on a gut level we need, but don’t always pay attention to in our busy lives.

Glennon suggests that we apply Kondo’s methods to our inner life as well as the pile of concert t-shirts we have squirreled away in a remote corner of the closet.  Previously, if you had asked me whether it’s possible to neatly fold our emotional lives into tidy, aesthetically pleasing piles I would probably have rolled my eyes at you and laughed at your adorably naive fantasy.  (Secretly though, I really want to be able to do that to my life and relationships too).

I mean, come on, wouldn’t it be wonderful to be able to organize our emotions and open a drawer to select the appropriate and joy sparking response to a situation?  As an empath who has had to learn to temper her responses to stimuli, it sounds fantastic!  I feel and sometimes speak before I think a response through.  However, I’m not sure that’s exactly what Glennon intended, plus, it feels a little “Stepford Wives”.

I think she meant that we get to choose what we allow into our daily experience, and that is something that is both realistic and possible.  Curating what we allow into our hearts and minds isn’t just doable, it’s crucial for self-care.  I’m not saying that we must only let in things and experiences that spark joy – because that would make life one dimensional and ultimately boring and stagnant.  I am saying that we should choose experiences that feel more gentle, authentic and kind.

If you’re not sure whether you need to make any changes, here’s a pop quiz:  when you wake up in the morning, do you feel a crushing sense of dread?  Are you grumpy, neutral, or happy to awaken to another day?  If you wake up grumpy or dreading the day, it’s possible that you might benefit from making some changes.

“That’s really easy for you to say, but I still have to get up and go to my crappy job so that I can pay the bills and feed my kids.”  Yes, you absolutely do, and tiny perception changes can make that task entirely more tolerable.  It might seem tough to believe but stick with me.

The most liberating idea I ever learned was that everything we think, feel and believe will be reflected back to us in our daily lives.  Sometimes it’s a terrifying realization, because if our lives are not what we want them to be, it can feel like adding insult to injury.  “Whaddya mean, my life is tough and it’s MY fault?!”  It’s really hard to take responsibility for creating what we experience, especially if it’s not particularly wonderful. The fantastic news is that what created the reality to begin with was just a thought, and you can change your thoughts.

This philosophy is not a magic bullet, and it’s not going to affect instant change, but it also doesn’t take very long either.  For practical matters though – there is action to take in the moment, like applying a spiritual tourniquet in order to deal with the currently crappy reality we have to face while we make the internal changes.  If you’re having a rough Monday morning and you’re looking for a way to ease yourself into a better mood, I have a few tricks up my sleeve to share with you.

One I love is faking a smile.  Science has shown that the mere act of smiling can lift your mood, lower stress, boost your immune system and possibly even prolong your life.  I know it sounds backwards, but science has shown that our bodies respond to the physical act of smiling because your brain registers the muscle movement and produces feel-good hormones in response. The fact is, as Dr. Isha Gupta a neurologist from IGEA Brain and Spine explains, a smile spurs a chemical reaction in the brain, releasing certain hormones including dopamine and serotonin. “Dopamine increases our feelings of happiness. Serotonin release is associated with reduced stress. Low levels of serotonin are associated with depression and aggression,” says Dr. Gupta. “Low levels of dopamine are also associated with depression.”

You can actually trick your brain into thinking that you’re happy and then spur actual happiness. Forcing a fake smile can actually legitimately reduce stress and lower your heart rate. Let that sink in.  If you’re not at least a little bit excited about how rad that is, I may need to check your pulse.

Please, please, please do not think I’m suggesting that you hide, stuff or otherwise sublimate your real feelings.  Quite the contrary.  I want you to own, feel and explore them with me, with a therapist or with your best friend over wine and yummy food. (I suggest doing the latter on a pile of warm laundry with freshly baked bread and French butter). Sometimes life demands that we show up and face the day, and tips like this one can help us make it through a tiny bit easier.

Other mood-enhancing hacks include inhaling orange essential oil, looking at the color green, buying ourselves some flowers or having a cuddle with a beloved pet.  Try any and all of them if and see if they work for you.

The underlying goal is that we create lives we don’t want (or need) to escape from. The surest way I know of doing that is managing our perceptions, both about what is true and what is possible. Thoughts and words create our future experiences.  If you’re not sure how, you may consider examining what you feel and believe, in order to identify the ways in which your internal narrative doesn’t help facilitate the life you actually want to be living.

Not sure how? I can help.  Find me at 12Listen for a reading and we’ll get you on your way.

As always, I’m with you on the journey.