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Big life transitions challenge us to review our lives and assess whether we are on our path. Whether you are going through a divorce or separating from a relationship, the level of grief and loss can be traumatic, depleting and debilitating. You have the choice to move through this challenging life event quickly or slowly. And you have the choice to stay in the same patterning that got you here, or to change it so that the next phase in your life is more fulfilling and joyful. Get the support you need. You aren’t alone in this.

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Recent Blog Posts

The Power of NO – Setting healthy boundaries

Setting healthy boundaries after a breakup has taken on a new definition. With social media and modern technology, it seems like making a clean break is an impossible task. It’s all about how you do it that matters. We’ll explore how the power of “NO” is more important than ever when you want to forget and get on with your life. Why you can’t let go As I look back on my 20-year marriage and all of the signals that I ignored, it makes me wonder why I lasted so long. There were good times, of course, but the overall theme of badness was all pervasive. I found my answer just last year, with my annual astrology check-in. I tried a new astrologer for a different perspective, and that’s what I got. He told me that I made a deal when I got married. Bingo! That I did. I wanted children, and I knew on a subconscious level that my ex would be the one to give me healthy ones while providing a certain amount of financial security. Not much, but enough. The astrologer also told me that I did this at my peril. That was true. I made a big sacrifice to my financial wellbeing, as we all do on some level when we bring children into this world. But after a specific time, I had options to leave but didn’t. Why? The astrologer told me that I was a masochist. Bingo again! My therapist will concur that I didn’t have healthy boundaries. When you ignore the signs Why did I stay in the marriage when it was so bad? I would justify behavior and ignore my feelings. I would say things like;” It isn’t all that bad” and “I have invested all these years, why would I quit now.” And it didn’t help when my parents and society just reinforced these beliefs that I should suffer regardless. “For better or for worse” or “You made your bed.” The best one came from my father, my fellow masochist, bless his soul. He said, “Would you divorce your children?” Gosh! No wonder I had no sense of my boundaries. This thinking continued to affect my decisions with all future lovers after my divorce. How to stop the ambiguity I had a relationship that lasted only four months, but it took over a year later to finally cut all cords. And recently, two years later, I received a text from this lover, letting me know that he was thinking of me (submarining!). Deleting him from all accounts and my contacts didn’t seem to work. And he isn’t the only one. I am continually getting little “check-in” texts from previous relationships that were a definite “NO Thank you.” Perhaps I wasn’t clear enough in my language back then? Was I unconsciously saying “yes”? Did my body language say something different? In “The Endless Breakup” article in Psychology today, Lisa A. Phillips describes the common practices of ghosting to orbiting and submarining in the online dating world. She explores how avoiding a breakup is easy, but only serves to keep us in anxiety and self-doubt with these practices. She goes on to explain the most interesting observation about this new generation, which is that although there’s a push for more clarity of responsibility in sexual relations, that we are clinging to ambiguity in our romantic relationships. Hmmm. True that! Her advice for “A GOOD END” is to have a relationship exit interview. Brilliant! This way, you can limit the emotional torment that goes along with the ambiguity (is she/he coming back?) of a breakup. You have an opportunity to be kind and clear since you are in a stable state of mind and avoid the lashing out and “words that can’t be taken back.” And a breakup interview makes it clear that it is going to take place and allows everyone involved to start the “moving on” process. There is clarity with this ending. But what about before this? How do you get clear that we should be ending it? When the body says NO Like in Gabor Mate’s book – ‘When The Body Says No”, we tend to ignore what our body is saying to us when we are in discomfort. He focuses on significant illnesses that appear after the body has been given warning signs for years. We can follow this philosophy for all disruptive matters of our lives, including a breakup. Our body tells us when something isn’t right with a partner or lover. It tells us with small signals at first, such as headaches or allergies or backaches or chest issues. These are all signs that our immune system is compromised and this points to stress as the instigator. You have to ask yourself; What’s stressful in your relationship right now? In energy practice, the pain area is indicative of the mental emotion. For example, if you have lower back pains. The low back connects to the Root Chakra, which represents our foundation and connection to our tribe, stability, and feeling grounded. Anything to do with our back informs us of a past issue, and lower back pain represents financial security. The same goes for the stomach or belly pains. This area also connected to the Root Chakra and the Sacral Chakra (partner, creativity, masculine and feminine balance). IBS and other gut issues can indicate a disharmony in those areas of your life. But it also is indicative of fear. When you follow the signals, you land on the answer. Paying attention to your body is vital for all decisions and most importantly, with our romantic relationships. It’s these relationships that hurt the most when they don’t work out. This is where healthy boundaries really matter. Ways to set healthy boundaries The first step we have to recognize when we know it’s time to leave, (but you’re talking yourself out of it) is: Be mindful of your energy exchange. What I mean by this is; check your energy level.

How Sugar Destroys Your Sex Life

Studies show how sugar destroys your sex life. We now know that sugar is an issue in our society. The amount we consume is responsible for many common autoimmune diseases like diabetes and metabolic syndrome and others.  But what we don’t know is how our consumption of sugar has severe repercussions on our ability to have deep, meaningful connections, fantastic sex, and, on our love life as a whole. Sugar has been around for a long time; since the 1700s. Trade of “white gold” was incredibly significant to the development of the world as we know it. But now, we are reassessing the importance of our record high consumption. According to the Harvard College Global Health Review, it’s the first time in our history that “chronic non-communicable diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes pose a greater health burden worldwide than do infectious diseases…” Too much sugar destroys our ability to have great sex. The connection between sugar and how it affects our pleasure center in our brain is the same process as when we have sex. Too much sugar destroys your sex life. Let me get a little sciencey for a minute and explain how the brain works when we are having sex. Do you know that “cloud nine” feeling reported by many during sex? It’s when the nerves send messages to the brain’s pleasure center or reward circuit. The sexual arousal felt in the body floods the brain with a surge of neurochemicals, which are chemical messengers that forge emotions, feelings of attachment, and even love. The level of pleasure is contingent on the release of these chemicals that can be used to measure the intensity of your sexual climax. The areas of the brain impacted by sexual arousal include the: Nucleus Accubens Ventral tegmental area (VTA) Hippocampus Amygdala Pituitary Prefrontal Cortex HOW IT WORKS Nucleus Accubens – Controls the release of dopamine Ventral tegmental area (VTA) – releases dopamine Hippocampus – releases memories, pleasant ones Amygdala – regulates emotions Pituitary – produces a feeling of bonding and releases oxytocin Prefrontal Cortex – releases the good feels of dopamine and oxytocin When we are attracted to someone, the brain’s chemicals kick in, and we think to ourselves, YES, we like this person. YES, we want to have sex with them. YES, we want to bond and connect on a deeper level. These hormones impact the way our bodies behave, and influence our minds and thus our perception of reality and our ability to pick our mates wisely. OUR BRAIN CHEMICALS ON SEX Four neurotransmitter rule: 1. DOPAMINE Is the driver. It creates the pleasure high, the fireworks, our reward. The expectation of dopamine drives our mind to control our body to do things. You think you wanted a coffee to perk yourself up, but in fact, it was a dopamine cycle that kicked in to make your body get up and find a coffee to sate the dopamine expectation. You can think of dopamine as the “Gotta have it!” neurochemical, whatever “it” is. It’s the “craving” signal. The more dopamine you release and the more your reward circuit is activated, the more you want or crave something. It’s responsible for addiction, that excitement when you see a beautiful person. 2. SEROTONIN Serotonin is serenity, ecstasy, and the state of grace. It is a lingering pleasure sensation we get that is less intense than dopamine, but a powerful driver for our behaviors. Serotonin is about feeling good, really good. It’s the bliss you feel after an orgasm. Or the extended sexual ecstasy you achieve, when you become adept at Tantric practices. The serotonin serenity also occurs when you meditate. 3. OXYTOCIN This is the bonding agent, the cuddle chemical. It makes us want to connect, physically with another person. And once connected, you want to stay connected. It’s considered the “bonding” neurochemical. Super crucial for our health and wellbeing. Oxytocin can be easily fabricated, just with close contact with another human being (or a pet). That’s why we like to be in communities and gather in groups. Only twenty seconds of hug contact, even with a stranger, can dramatically boost levels of oxytocin. 2.VASOPRESSIN This one is for the males and isn’t that common in females. It is the protection drug and kicks in to support feelings of possession and desire. It’s what we like to imagine as the knight in shining armor scenario and helps our male lovers come to our protection if there is a threat of being taken by another knight. THE CONNECTION TO SUGAR When we are having sex, our brain’s chemicals get activated like this: Two minutes before we orgasm, the brain centers associated with reward are activated. These areas also get triggered when we eat or drink. Shortly before orgasm, other brain regions are activated, such as the cortex that receives sensory messages of touch from all over the body. And the last brain area to be activated was the hypothalamus, the control center that regulates temperature, hunger, thirst, and fatigue. Our neurotransmitters are being activated everywhere, shooting off like fireworks in the brain. Remember the reward neurotransmitter, dopamine? Well, when we eat sugar, this chemical gets over activated and puts us in an addiction cycle, wanting more, eating more, etc. And each time we need more to get that reward we want (sugar or sex). Eventually, just the anticipating of sex and orgasm is enough to trigger the flood of dopamine into your brain. This works the same for sugar. We achieve full-blown addiction once the reward is satisfied. Dopamine blunts the brain because it has been flooded with dopamine as we thought about eating or watching porn. This is how sugar destroys your sex life. We want to get that rush of chemicals faster and don’t want to wait or have the patience it takes to forge a deep, meaningful, healthy bond. We’ve become used to having easy access to sex at every turn. Porn used to be taboo, and

Resurrection – How I Rebuilt My Life

There were times when I thought that phase of my life would never end. My separation process lasted 5 years and seemed like an eternity. I lived in a perpetual state of not knowing what would happen next. I held my breath, bracing for the next gut-wrenching blow to a wound already open and festering. Emotional purgatory is what I used to call it. I longed to reclaim my life. I prayed for a resurrection. Was I in grief, trauma, or warrior mode? All three more like it.  How far down the rabbit hole did I have to go to get to the truth? Where was that light at the end of the tunnel everyone spoke about? Waiting. Holding on. Until finally, one day, it arrived. Just like that. All the pain, terror, fear, bracing for the worst was gone. I looked to Maya Angelou… You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may trod me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I’ll rise. Like a breath of fresh air, stillness, and then a bright sunny day, the judge proclaimed it over. A clean slate, empty pages in my new book. One life was now over. How do I move forward? What’s my next step? It’s so easy to fall back into the old ways. It’s familiar, even comfortable in the discomfort. I would say to myself: “But do you really want to go backward after coming so far to where you are now? All that breath-holding and bracing and focusing on a positive outcome. Now you have it. Don’t squander it.” Finding your new foothold comes with a new set of fears. What if I fuck it up again? What if I’m really not good enough for this new life? What are the new rules? Where is the manual? Here it is… 1. Release Take time to reflect, to heal, to grieve. Find a calm place. This is essential to reclaiming your new life. Resist the old patterns. Stop yourself from reaching for the easy way out. The only way out is to go deep within. The more you commit to your healing, commit to really feeling your feelings, then you will release them more easily. Dive deep to really feel it and then let it go. 2. Rebuild Just like a new building starts with a strong foundation, so too should you start from your substructure. Patch up the cracks and erase those old stories that don’t make any sense now. Rebuild those retaining walls by finding your new boundaries. Rewrite your story. Discovering why you ended up broken up is super essential to eliminating the chances of it ever happening again. Fix your foundation. 3. Reclaim When you are clear on what you don’t want, then you become clear on what you do want. All the things you lost are gone. But now nothing is stopping you. Clarity, calmness and now claiming it. You are free to choose everything in your new life. Does my sexiness upset you? Does it come as a surprise That I dance like I’ve got diamonds At the meeting of my thighs? Life can be a messy, twisty, bendy, stomach in your throat rollercoaster ride. But not now. Now you’ve come through the fire, a little scorched, but your skin is more resilient having felt the burn. You can now focus and resolve to build a better life. A life with unconditional love, acceptance, ease, and a ton of abundance. Nothing is stopping you. You and only you have the power to resurrect your life. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear I rise Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise I rise I rise. Thank you Maya. ox

How to Eat Your Way to Happiness

One of the first things to go when we’re in heartbreak is our diet. We will do anything to feel better, and that includes eating all the foods we know are bad for us. But if you make some small adjustments to your diet, you can eat your way to happiness. I did it. My go-to feel better food is sugar. I now know that it’s an addiction, but back then, all I could do to feel better was dive into sugary food, the chai latte’s, the occasional dark chocolate (that’s supposed to be good right?). I would binge on desserts before I ate food. I would eat cake and cookies late at night. I would convince myself that dried fruit was a healthy snack but found out that they are like candy. Then I would throw the occasional salad in there somewhere to convince myself I was eating healthily. Why do we do it? We do it to numb. The feelings of sadness are sometimes too much, and all we want to do is not feel bad. Some of the more common numbing foods include: – red wine – chocolate – ice cream – cookies – sugary drinks – creamy hot drinks We also do this because we want to feel happy again. Our feel-good neurotransmitters tend to decline when we are in heartbreak grief. Neurotransmitters such as oxytocin, serotonin, dopamine help us feel good but are also crucial for keeping us healthy. Producing these feel-good chemicals is vital to our wellbeing. The foods listed above give us a quick fix good feeling with the sugar intake. But this over time can cause severe problems and more importantly it can repel the love you so need. Eating sugar of any kind leads to blood sugar imbalance. Low blood sugar can cause a drastic change in your mood. When your blood sugar drops, you become hungry, irritable, lack concentration, and you start to crave carbs to increase your serotonin production. And the vicious cycle repeats. HOW TO AVOID SUGAR ADDICTION: Start your day with 20 grams of protein. Protein slows down the rate of sugar absorption in the blood, and this ensures your body gets what it needs in a balanced way. Eat something every few hours to avoid any spikes in blood sugar levels. Eat some protein with each meal and snack. Reduce or eliminate sugary drinks and snacks. Replace the “white” stuff (white bread, white pasta, white rice) with whole grains. WHY ARE PROBIOTICS SO IMPORTANT? Probiotics help our gut microbiome stay balanced. We have good bacteria and, harmful bacteria which our body is continually trying to keep things in balance. And probiotics aid our gut by promoting this balance. More importantly, there is tons of research to show that our gut health dictates our mental health. We now know that 80% of our neurotransmitters form in the gut. So, if we are eating foods that create an imbalance of harmful bacteria (such as Candidiasis) via sugary foods, we guarantee a low production of our happy neurotransmitters, ensuring that we’ll continue to feel unhappy. But when we eat foods that promote good bacteria and eat probiotic food and supporting supplements, you help your gut produce those happy neurotransmitters. FOODS THAT PROMOTE GOOD BACTERIA: Greek yogurt kefir sourdough bread kimchi miso sauerkraut chutneys kombucha probiotic supplements Eating foods high in sugar is something we all do more often than you think. It has become an epidemic because we are all in heartbreak to some degree. Sugar is the greatest quick fix addiction that our society has. But over time, it can cause more harm leading to serious health issues, as we see with diabetes. To avoid this, start eating foods that are guaranteed to make you feel good. By practicing good eating habits and picking those foods that promote a healthy gut, you will produce more of those happy neurotransmitters. And that’s how you eat your way to happiness. xo