Buddhist lesson

I’ve talked quite a bit about one of the first things I did when I began my spiritual healing journey, which was going to Buddhist mediation classes at the Kadampa Center here in New York City. It truly was the most life-changing steps I could have taken.

I went regularly for about 6 months, each time feeling another weight lifted off of my shoulders. I gained so much clarity about what was happening in my life and why. My anger, sadness and hopelessness subsided as each week passed and for once I began to feel in control of my life.

What’s interesting about control is that we so often feel like we’re not in control, so we spend most of our lives fighting to get it back.

One of the breakthroughs I had when attending the Buddhism classes was that I was actually always in control of my life…my emotions, my beliefs, my circumstances, my outcomes.

And you are too! We all are! (Deep breath.)

There are many techniques I’ve learned over the past few years that have allowed me to gain back the control I had let go of for most of my life, but today I want to share with you a powerful Buddhist lesson I learned at the Kadampa Center which helped me start that process.

Maybe you’ve heard this or something similar to it. Maybe you’ve heard me say this statement at other times, because it’s incredibly powerful.

However, the power in any lesson is not in learning it, but applying it.

That’s when we see the proof of its validity.

I’ll always be a skeptic of any idea, but only because I want to experience truth rather than just understand it.

So I began applying this concept to my life. In small ways first and then more consistently to all scenarios.

I would say it to myself when I came across challenges, such as disagreements with friends or family, the New York City subway (one of the best places to test out patience), stress at work, plans that went wrong, getting sick and so on….

And gradually amazing shifts began to happen. I felt calmer, more in control over my emotions, happier, more fulfilled with far less, things that would have normally upset me didn’t affect me at all. In fact I often laughed at things that would have made me cry or get angry. I experienced the truth and power of this truth and I want you to as well.

We create our circumstances by the filters through which we view them. That’s why two people can be present in the exact same situation yet have completely different experiences of them. This will lead to each one feeling different emotions as a result of those experiences. Continue reading


vegan coconut lime pie
Nothing says summer like a delicious citrusy pie and some coconut!
When I found out I was lactose intolerant in my mid-20s, I was bummed to say the least. How was I going to be able to enjoy all the foods I loved? How much food was I going to have to cut out of my vegetarian diet?
vegan coconut lime pie
Looking back, I see this “obstacle” in my life as a blessing. I didn’t want to live a life of deprivation, so instead I took it upon myself to research ingredients and cooking techniques I could use to create the flavors and textures of foods I could no longer eat.
My love affair with cooking began.
vegan coconut lime pie
This vegan coconut lime pie is vegan, gluten-free and oh so indulgent and delicious. It’s fresh, tangy and sweet all at the same time. There is absolutely no baking involved either.
And if you know me, I always try to find a way to get in some greens. Believe it or not, there are some hidden in this recipe, but you wouldn’t even know it! Trust me!

Continue reading


workout motivation

Over the past years I’ve had my fair share of motivated mornings and not so motivated mornings. When I get out of a workout routine, sometimes it can feel like I literally have to rip myself out of bed to go to the gym.

I get how hard it can be to convince yourself to get out of your comfortable, cozy, soft, heavenly bed and go for a run or to a bootcamp class. It hardly sounds like a fair exchange.

But there are some incredibly effective tips and techniques that I’ve implemented over the past few years that have helped me maintain my workout motivation and a steady 5-days a week routine, even when I’m traveling.

I have 30 of these tips (yes 30) that I’m going to share with you today. I’m sharing so many because if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that there is no one-size-fits-all formula for anything, especially not maintaining motivation to workout.

If you really want to create lasting positive changes in your life, you have to be willing to experiment with various techniques to find the ones that work best for you. So pick a few a week and see how they work and then stay as consistent as possible to see if they have staying power.

However, here’s an important note: You may find that one technique works really well for a few weeks, but then wears off. So be proactive and see what others you can implement to keep you on track.

I’ve split these tips up into several sections that will help you stay motivated and inspired before, during and after your workouts.

i want you to get as much staying power as possible and be able to have tools to use at any point along the way to overcome challenges you may experience.

 

OVERALL MINDSET

  • Don’t exercise to lose weight. Exercise to be healthy, love your body and feel good!
  • Surround yourself with inspiration (stories, quotes, images, etc.)
  • Give yourself permission to start slow
  • Let go of results and make the habit the goal
  • Stay active throughout the day, don’t just focus on gym time
  • Choose workouts you enjoy (remember, look for solutions, not excuses!)

NIGHT BEFORE A WORKOUT

  • Get to bed at a reasonable time so you can wake up early
  • Set your intention the night before that you’ll get restful sleep and wake up refreshed
  • Set 2 alarms, preferably one across the room
  • Put your workout clothes out the night before
  • Pack your gym bag the night before
  • Schedule your workouts into your calendar

MORNING

  • Drink a glass of water immediately and do a light stretch to wake your body up
  • Put your workout clothes on immediately when you wake up or before you leave the office
  • Put on some upbeat music BEFORE you workout
  • Set small goals
  • Do a 5-10 minute visualization before your workout of yourself feeling energized, fit and amazing

DURING

  • Create a killer playlist
  • Breathe positive mantras and energy into your body
  • Look for stop and go points as you run
  • Focus on finishing rather than how fast you go (it’s ok to slow down, but don’t give up)

AFTER

  • Give gratitude to your body and yourself
  • Share your progress on social media
  • Link your positive habit with another, by having a healthy post-workout meal
  • Take a moment to pause, stretch and feel into your body

Some more…

  • Hire a trainer
  • Pay for a class or gym membership
  • Find a workout buddy
  • Announce your health journey on social media
  • Buy some new sneakers/workout gear (invest in your health)

What are some of your favorite ways to stay motivated to workout? Share your comments below!

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