Well Rounded

Balance

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying that life is all about finding a balance.  I’ve struggled with the thought of this forever, thinking that if I work hard, play nice, stay healthy, and make the money that I need, that everything should fall into place as it should, I’d be happy, and my life would be balanced

yogaLAB / thekarmaconceptblog

Finding Balance In Life // Life Wheel

But creating a balanced life takes work, and especially, it takes awareness.  Without realizing what’s abundant, what’s weak, or what’s completely missing, we’re just set towards a bumpy road.

I’ve learned the hard way that focusing only on physical things (work, school, physical health) will drive a person to sickness. It has seemed that if something is going really great in life, sooner or later another aspect starts deteriorating. Personally, I start to focus so much on the happiness and fulfillment of the good areas that I don’t nourish the other realms; the areas that may not be holding up so well and the areas that need some attention.

Regarding my own health, it started declining when I thought my career was moving forward at a great speed, and my body was stronger that it ever had been.  I had just moved to a new city and I was so excited to be finishing my degree, working in my field of study, and teaching yoga. Several months into this fulfillment phase, I started feeling like I was blowing out my mind/body/spirit connection.  I started getting chronically fatigued, physically sick for weeks at a time, and finding my body becoming sensitive to certain foods.  I thought I had everything figured out around me, but really I was just hiding from the areas that weren’t so bountiful, and not really considering my whole picture.

Being around naturopathic doctors and holistic health counselors has taught me to look at the bigger picture.  By studying your life in all aspects and taking small steps to improve what is running low, it’s easy to boost your overall health.

conjourneo life wheel // thekarmaconceptblog

The Life Wheel is something health counselors have used for years, and some versions even date back to ancient Buddhism.  I like to use the site Cojourneo to analyze where I am in my holistic health circle and see what needs improving.  This site also gives you tips to boosting what is low, and management sources for each category.  I’ve posted my own circle above, and plan to update it here quarterly, as a way to look back to see where I have improved and hold myself accountable to my own personal changes.

Although these aspects can change on a weekly or daily basis, I think it’s good to see where you have come from and where you are going with your own health and happiness. You might be surprised and inspired to start taking steps to a more balanced life.

Once your through and have your wheel in front of you, view each area like spokes on a bicycle.  If this wheel were on your bike would it be wobbly? Or is it pretty well balanced and just lacking adequate inflation?  The goal is to create a round circle first, so your bike can ride smoothly and then begin filling the circle in so the whole wheel is colorful, centered, and makes your bike easy to ride.

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It’s not about finding balance, but creating balance in your life.

What does your circle look like? What areas do you need help improving? What ideas do you have to create more balance in your life?

Namaste,
Leah

A Natural Beauty

Happy National Day of Love, folks!

In honor of Valentines Day, I’m heading back to the roots of New Years intent of self-love. I believe it’s important to at least take one day out of the week to treat yourself and spend some quality time relaxing with the most important person in your life, YOU.

Since partaking on this health journey, I’ve not only changed my food habits, but also my beauty routine.  Just like conventional food, the products you wash your hair with, rub on your face, and clean with are made using harsh chemicals that should honestly be banned.  If you’ve been having ongoing health concerns, take a look at your medicine cabinet and shower products.  If you can’t pronounce an ingredient AND have no idea what it is, it could be affecting your body internally.   (Check out how toxic your current cosmetics are in The Cosmetic Database.)

My favorite act of self-love is a detox bath.  I’ve made it a routine in my weekly schedule, and it was even recommended by my naturopathic doctor.  Below are some products I use consistently, free from chemicals and twisted ingredients.

Health Favorites

1/ Dry Skin Brush: One of my favorite products, this is used before your shower or bath.  It has a plethora of benefits, mainly becoming popular for removing cellulite, as well as to stimulate circulation, tone muscles, and eliminate clogged pores. (It also preps my legs for a cleaner shave.) Always start at your feet, and use long strokes up the body towards the heart.

Detox Bath Soak: Since the skin is the largest organ used for detoxing the body, this soak does it all in one sitting.  This San Francisco based company has many different blends of salts, catering to whatever your needs are.

Aztec Healing Clay:  I have used almost every face wash on the market and this has battled my skin problems better than anything I have ever used.  When blended with apple cider vinegar and brushed on the skin, it hardens within 15 minutes to create smaller pores, less blackheads, and overall more appealing skin tone.  Use right before you get in your detox bath, to get double the internal cleansing benefits.

Norwex Cloths: Want to stop using face wash altogether?!  These microfiber cloths are infused with silver thread, creating an antibacterial cloth when activated by water.  These get rid of my makeup better than anything topical I have used, and cleanse way better than chemical laden washes.  These make it easier to travel; I don’t have to have an extra bottle in my bag!  Definitely a must have.  They are sold by independent distributors, so find someone near you and help out a small, local business.  (They also carry household-cleaning clothes, check out this video…)

Essential Oils:  These can be used for just about anything, but I love adding them to my bath water.  My favorites are lavender for relaxing at night, and a sandalwood/vetiver mixture for morning time.

Treat yourself, Heal Yourself, and Love Yourself.

Try Mary’s Self-Love Meditation today as well. This is one of my favorites.

 

What natural products do you use in your daily beauty routines? Also, what are some essential oils that are must-haves around the home?  I’m looking to expand my collection. Thanks!

Much Love,
Leah

A Meditative Mindfulness

A Meditative Mind

Happy Friday!

With the end of the workweek approaching, I think we all look forward to the relaxing aspect the weekend traditionally offers, right?  I say traditionally because many folks aren’t so available to enjoy these days like they were designed.  I hope you’re one of the lucky ones, yet I can almost guarantee you’re sitting there, rolling your eyes, thinking “relaxing??? Is this lady crazy??? My weekends are for errands, forgotten chores, side jobs and everything in between…”

After attending a yoga class that included chanting and live music, my friend Alex asked if I had my own meditative practice.  I told her I didn’t have one, and honestly had never been able to really “get into it”, besides during my yoga teacher training. I’ve always wanted to be one of those people who found quiet peace in the morning that translated through the day but just hadn’t figured out what worked for me.

She told me to check out Meditation Oasis, and even sat with me for a healing meditation.  We were across from each other on the ground; legs crossed, and slowly sank into the sounds in our headphones.  I found myself drifting away constantly from the lady speaking, and honestly don’t remember a word she said…but I know how I felt after, and how well I slept that night.

Even if weekends are the start to your workweek, I challenge you to take a few minutes and just sit with yourself and practice a guided meditation.  The website above has short ones, long ones, and meditations with or without music, so it’s easy to find something to tailor your preferences and time allotment.

Holistic heath focuses on body, mind, and spirit, and I believe meditation can target all these things, if you let it. Instead of focusing so much energy on eating more healthy or exercising more, give your brain a break for once.  Not that eating healthy and exercising aren’t important, (because they are!), but focusing on strengthening the mind will lead to making other life shifts (like diet and exercise) more manageable and satisfying in the long run.

Happy Weekend & Namaste,

-Leah