Raw//Live//Local

Keep your feet on the ground and your head in the clouds.


1 Comment

Developing an Unshakable Mindset

photo-1429080695038-cdf6ae5dbc13

Living in faith and minimizing fear is arguably the most important foundation for a peaceful and happy life. This, however, can be quite a challenge as we’re constantly bombarded with options and challenges that make us question every moment and decision of our lives, leaving us riddled with fear and anxiety on a daily basis.

Working to find a calmness of spirit and faith in the journey aligns us with our true nature and equips us with an unshakable mindset.

Those who are firm in their mindset stride forth into life without letting the unknown get them down. This unwavering strength in pursuit of their goals comes from the cultivation of a deep inner trust.

For some people, this mindset appears God given. They seem to have been born with an innate fearlessness, and a positive and buoyant disposition, while others grow up shy and worrisome. For those who are not naturally extroverted, moving towards a fearless mindset can seem like an almost impossible task.

Worry and concern can drive our decisions and hold us back from truly walking towards that which will ultimately bring us joy and actualization. It can feel safe to wear worries as a cloak to protect us from the trouble that looms. In truth, however, worry is no more a cloak than it is a magnet, attracting pain and even creating our own suffering.

The way to move towards our strength and out of our fears is through courage. Courage is not the absence of fear, but the recognition of it and the confidence to move forward nonetheless. Courage comes from the Latin root cor, meaning heart. Thus, to live in courage means to live through our hearts.

Courage gives us strength through openness, and when we live with an open heart, the oneness of the world becomes available to us. This enables us to call forth our divinity and align us with our true nature. By being in touch with our true self we move closer to a purer and more whole version of ourselves; it puts us in communion with nature and our own inner enlightenment.

It’s impossible to live through our hearts and in faith when we live in fear of the unknown. The unknown will always exist; it’s getting to a place of acceptance and trust that enables us to live in freedom.

The key in all of this is to have patience with the process. To actively and consciously work towards the goal on a daily basis, to be gentle on ourselves, and to know that we are in complete control of our own experience here on earth. Ways to achieve this include detoxifying physical movement, practicing conscious thought, and right eating.

Specifics to come next article in Pt 2: Strengthening Your Core to Live Through Your Heart

Photo by Azrul Aziz


3 Comments

That Which You Seek Lies Within

photo-1416949929422-a1d9c8fe84af

I think about God a lot. Not in a heaven and hell, old man in the sky sort of way, but in a deep reverence for the power that keeps the planets in orbit and the stars in the sky sort of way. I’ve learned, through much reading, research and practice, that this very same power lies within each of us.

Yes, the power that turns the fetus into the baby and the bulb into the rosebush is the same force that each and every one of us as humans carries within. The difference between humans and animals or plants is that we have the power to say yes or no, and that we are at the effect of the mortal realm. The mortal realm makes us forget that which we truly are, which is a perfect creation of the divine.

Excuse me for getting so mystical, but this truth is nothing short of spectacular.

If you look at a baby, it’s generally joyous and at ease and playful. That is the true nature of us all, but heartbreak and bills and mean bosses make us forget this, and as we get older the burdens of life seem to outweigh the pleasures. The purpose of life is to remember the joy that we were created with; it is to adjust our perceptions to be open to the miracles that are available to us at every moment.

Our lives are up to us to create, of course, and seeing the beauty of life is not foolish, it is profound.

Dwelling in the negative, asking why me, or letting suffering get the best of you simply gives power to that which is concerning you. Adversity builds character, and recognizing difficulties as tests enables you to learn and grow. Maintaining a ‘beginner’s mind,’ that which is open and flexible instead of rigid and closed, allows you to ebb and flow with the tides of life.

Life is messy. That’s just the truth, and you can fight it or you can accept it. No one has it perfect, all we can do is our best. It is by that which cannot be taken away that we must define ourselves.

That which cannot be taken away comes from within.

Life, especially in the United States, is defined by our accomplishments. Accomplishments are extremely important. They build self-esteem, they let us explore and display our best qualities, and they have the power to make the world a better place. However, have you ever accomplished something only to find that the completion of it leads you to yearn for the same thing you wanted when you started out?

Making a certain amount of money, buying a home, and tying the knot – things our culture trumps as its highest values- tend not to deliver the joy and satisfaction they seemingly would. If they did, we’d have a lot less depression, divorce, and dissatisfaction in general. Ever met anyone who seems like they have it so good, then come to find out how sad, confused and lost they feel? Try reading a tabloid.

While taking care of our outer life is critical to our financial stability and worldly obligations, taking care of our inner life sets the stage for us to be happy no matter how much or how little we have. And, if you’re reading this right now, I’m telling you, you’ve got a lot.

Ok, back to God. Or creation, or Mother Nature, or the universe, or whatever word makes you feel comfortable. It lives within you.

There is a story that God used to live on the earth, but every day humans would come to him with their troubles. One person would ask for rain, and another would ask for sunshine, and it was impossible to please everyone. So he decided to go to the highest mountains, but climbers found him. So then he decided to go to the moon, but then space travel found him. So then he decided he would live within man, because man would never find him there.

That which you seek lies within. The peace, the power, the mental fortitude, the joy, it’s all within. It’s not in the ‘right’ home, or the ‘right’ person, or the ‘right’ mega-yacht. It’s in you.

Go inside. Spend time alone, in silence, and yes, in meditation. True happiness is properly manifested through physical and mental soundness.

At a time when religion seems to belong to extremists, it’s important to discover the truth for yourself. Having faith doesn’t mean leaning on something or discriminating others for taking a different path. It means tapping into your oneness with this planet, and recognizing that we and the birds and the rocks and the trees are all created of the same matter.

God is not a force to watch over and punish you, it’s a divine energy that can be accessed at any point to heal, uplift and guide you.

Be grateful for your health, your home, the sun and the sky. It may sound simple-minded, but a simple mind is one free of drama and free of delusion, both of which make this beautiful life a harsh one. If you have pain, look at it. It’s there to teach you something. If you feel lost, do something. If you don’t feel heard, use your voice to help someone who really doesn’t have a voice. There is always a direction to go. Inward is a good place to start.

Photo by Sebastian Boguszewicz


Leave a comment

Wanna be happy? Here’s how

Image

Our thoughts and perspectives shape us. The personal stories that we create about who we are and how we got here are what make us the people we are. Happiness is the same. It is not a result of circumstances but of a mindset, a piece of our identity that must be cultivated so that it lives within us, no matter what comes our way. Everyone is on a journey to happiness, but it’s time to realize that everything we need is within us. It’s not about looking for something but tapping into what already exists within us, and stripping away the things that hold us back from true happiness. Here are some ways to do that.

1. Train your brain

Our thoughts create grooves in our brains that become the building blocks for our habits and personalities. Every thought we have creates matter and over time the thoughts that we nurture become our identity. So, to change our outer circumstances we must first change our inner circumstances by cultivating healthy thoughts, even if we don’t believe them at first.

This means having healthy self talk, being positive, assuring, loving and kind in your head in every situation. First, you must become aware of your thought patterns, and then consciously make the effort to create different thoughts. Practicing gratitude is one of the best ways we can do this, as it makes us focus on the little things that matter, like a thank you note from your boss, instead of the things that don’t, like that idiot talking way too loud in the gym.

2. Know that getting what you want doesn’t always necessarily make things better

We all have goals. Get a promotion, save more money, take a trip, find a new lover, whatever. Goals are great because they give us a clear vision of what we want so that we can create a way to get there. It’s important to remember, however, that the achievement of our goals comes with issues of their own, and that they won’t ultimately change our level of happiness. This is because as humans we look to the next big thing as soon as we get what we want. Ie you get your promotion, which involves learning a new skill that you haven’t had to work on yet. Or, you meet someone amazing you have a real connection with, and then you start wondering when they’ll tell you they love you.

We are constantly evolving, changing, growing. The only way to ensure happiness is to commit to it now, and not look to the future for it. No matter what the circumstance, to resolve to be happy so that you know that when things change, for better or for worse, you’ll still be happy.

3. Do things that are good for yourself

Call an old friend, join a sports team, ride a rollercoaster. We have these rigid ideals of what constitutes being a good human, and they usually involve lots of stress and very little self-nurturing. Being gentle on ourselves and doing something every day that makes us feel whole and happy is the best thing we can do for ourselves. It makes us more sincere human beings capable of focusing on the needs of others because we first value the needs of ourselves. Have fun, be lighthearted, and do what makes you feel good, because that’s the only way to be happy all the time.

 

 


Leave a comment

Mountain Poses // Malibu, CA

UhgFG4KiP4Xyr-DfkbFJmUBXzDC2Z8aB18qXYNilGuwOoA7A6x-wCBNO54Rwh4lR6Qt5gAN5IQOUvLQHg2TcN4

bAqMVyypQLM38rV33lgL3ah5p23J692aAZxfGSPUgcM1VS1bVhD905GuXDtRjy6LhIQvaztoaH6tQQK4yZ3iu4 f0MARu6tMxI0YjxfFj61ULdTlDq88cJJ9zvHYSWipl8 SE-slMWEl2pIZNA1Vv_8HUq5Iu0IHzPAnHy81ODIeTk1pNE7BgBvnRupJjFVZVLmsC2O0b7PkRsYNzoebgyvRQ

-0sKjboiDOKPOsh_1HGMv9ATn9_6Hw6fxfuVPp4f6uk

Photos by Hazardous Taste


Leave a comment

How to be Young Forever

Image

1. Do yoga

Yoga is the best exercise you can do for yourself because it literally hacks your brain and rewires the way you deal with stress. It’s the practice of putting yourself into the most uncomfortable and unnatural positions and then staying there for way longer than you want to. How do you respond? Get mad at your teacher? Or smile and breathe? The more you practice, the more you smile and breathe which helps you to do so when life puts you in tough positions and keeps you there way longer than you want to.

Not getting overwhelmed by the difficulties of life will help reduce stress and keep you undaunted by difficulties that come your way. It’s also super gentle on your joints, strengthens your spine, and helps eliminate physical and emotional toxins, all of which contributes to a more youthful and vibrant you.

2. Smile

When you smile you create really strong vibrations that attract and warm everyone around you. How amazing that something as small as a smile can do that?! Smiling also creates a feeling of well-being in ourselves and actually makes you feel happier. Plus, frowning makes you look ugly and mean.

3. Eliminate toxins

Toxins are everywhere, which is why it’s so important to pay attention to the ones that are in our control. Things like energy drinks, soda, sugar, and processed foods greatly contribute to accelerated aging. Cut out these things as much as possible and make at least 50% of your diet pure, whole foods (anything that is unprocessed and only one ingredient).

This also goes for toxins in your body products. Since your skin is your biggest organ, it’s extremely important to take care of. A lot of body lotions, creams and washes have tons of ingredients that you really don’t want in your body. Everything you put onto it gets absorbed and goes into your blood stream, so start to look for natural brands to replace your current products. 

4. Be nice

We are human. We are imperfect creatures that make mistakes and give you a regular latte instead of an almond milk latte. Who cares? By getting upset with people for not understanding you or cutting you off you give control to outside situations to dictate your state of mind. Resolve to be gentle with and accepting of people and you won’t seem like a grumpy old lady. 


Leave a comment

5 Habits for Exceptional Health

Image

1. Start your day with awareness

Meditate. Drink tea. Write down three things you’re grateful for.

By paying attention to yourself first thing in the morning you set a peaceful tone for the day ahead, and honor the possibilities of a new day.

2. Only eat when you’re hungry

We make thousands of choices about food every day. Eating should only be done when you’re hungry. Not bored. Not sad. Not lonely. Not drunk. By eating when you’re not hungry you don’t allow your digestive system to relax, and more than likely you’ve got waste hanging out in your intestines that won’t get properly broken down and used for energy. This leads to weight gain, lack of energy, inflammation, and toxicity in the body. When you feel hungry, ask yourself if that’s really what it is. Most of the time, a glass of water, cup of tea, or walk around the block will help get rid of the urge and tide you over until your next meal.

3. Don’t punish yourself

We all do things we’re not proud of, but when it comes to food we tend to be typically brutal on ourselves. If you want desert, eat desert. If you want a glass of wine, enjoy a glass of wine. Don’t look back on it and hate on yourself for it.

By making reasonable indulgences part of your regimen, you won’t go crazy at your niece’s pizza party and pass out covered in ice cream. Commit to a solid foundation of whole, nutrient dense foods, and mindfully appreciate when it comes to enjoying things that aren’t necessarily so healthy.

4. Make exercise an enjoyable ritual

If you hate yoga, don’t do yoga. If running the stairs ten times makes you nauseous at the thought of it, stay away from the stairs.

Being active is a critical part of a vibrant life. The most important part of exercising is finding activity that suits you as an individual. This is the only way you’ll stick with it and the only way it will benefit you. Do whatever is in line with what makes you happy. Ride your bike at sunset. Walk your dog for an extra twenty minutes. Join a local team for a sport you played in high school. Pick something and get to it.

5. Eat the colors of the rainbow

Vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds – these foods are completely packed with all the nutrients you need for a healthy body and mind. Do as best you can to start all your meals with vegetables, and to snack on fruit and nuts during the day.  You’ll have tons of energy, great skin, and a strong immune system, and will save money at the store not buying packaged products.

Photo by Ben Moore


3 Comments

10 Ways to Empower Yourself & Change Your LIfe

Image

1. Plan a trip

Stop making excuses. Go rock climbing in Joshua Tree, walk across the Great Wall of China, learn to surf in Mexico. In the big scheme of things, doing what you want to do will give you so much more than saving a couple thousand dollars and spending an extra few days or weeks at the office.

2. Stop comparing yourself to others

You are exactly where you are supposed to be. Do your best and mind your own path.

3. Smile always

Seriously, when you frown, you look ugly.

4. Stop caring what other people think about you.

It’s none of your business.

5. Eat real food

Your body is alive so nourish your vibrance. Don’t eat shit, because it makes you look and feel like shit.

6. Send love to everyone

Quietly bless everyone you meet, especially if they suck. They have to wake up in their own grumpy body every day. You get to wake up in your blissed out life. Remember that.

7. Listen to your music loud

Dancing is good for you. Do it often.

8. Challenge yourself

Find something that makes you uncomfortable and do it. Yoga, talking to strangers, speaking in front of a group – put yourself in positions you can’t back out of. You’ll get through it faster than expected and will realize you can do pretty much anything.

9. Let go of expectations

Do your best every day, be kind to your besties and to strangers, take care of your body, and know that everything will be fine. Don’t hold people or situations to expectations, accept challenges, and know that the infinite power of the universe is gently recalibrating your life at every moment to help guide you to your highest potential.

10. Practice gratitude

Be thankful for your parents and friends, your job, your apartment, and those tiny moments of happiness that you get from your morning coffee. This is your life, send appreciation and love to every corner of it.