Happy Healthy and Fit

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Delivering Happiness One Smile at a Time

Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.
~Marcel Proust

I am so lucky to have this quote on a new refrigerator magnet to gently remind me that it is not what we have in our lives that matter, but truly who we have in our lives that give them meaning. I received this magnet yesterday as a gift inside a card that reads- Good friends are like stars. You don't always see them, but you always know they're there!

Last week, I made plans to meet my friend Jess at the mountain for an early morning hike. Just before bed, I started to realize that our meeting time was 6:15a and sunrise wasn't until 6:36a. It was late so we sent a few texts back and forth about the possibility of the gate being closed at the entrance. In the process our communication got garbled. Needless to say, I was at the mountain at 6:15a alone. I waited for 25 minutes and knew that she wasn't coming. It would have been easy to be upset on the only morning I had to sleep in. How could I be upset? It was Jess who had invited me and it was me that cast doubt on the park being open.

When I finally heard back from her well after 7a, I knew that my day was going to be spent delivering happiness. It is silly miscommunication that drives unnecessary wedges in friendship. Not only did I not want her to feel bad, I wanted her to know how much I appreciate her. Not wanting to waste any time, I threw on my favorite ripped jeans, T-shirt and flip flops and delivered her a friendship card, book and Tammi Coe cupcake to work. I gave her a hug and left. It felt so amazing.

Overwhelmed by the high feeling of giving and receiving appreciation, I was on a quest. Next stop was to get myself some fresh flowers when I realized that they were so beautiful I wanted to share them with my dear friend Melissa. As I was walking through the store carrying bundles of flowers, I ran into a familiar face from yoga and he wanted to know if I was giving or receiving? I smiled and said, "Both."

After carefully arranging them in a vase, I planned to leave the bouquet of lilies and sunflowers on her doorstep when she answered the door. She was surprised by the flowers and I got to see her heart smile. She knows how much I love and appreciate her. If I was having flowers, I felt she should have them too.

We played catch up while she cleaned her kitchen and curled her hair. I love that my friendships don't have any walls. When I told her that I was going to see the Suns play that night and my friend Heidi had floor seats and I mean front row floor seats, without hesitation, she reached into her closet and handed me a brand new beautiful shirt insisting I wear it so I look hot when I am on Tv. It was a birthday gift and in that moment, I knew she valued me more than her gift. It was giving and receiving.

My Happiness quest continued as I met another friend for coffee and conversation. I learned that although I cannot go to such measures every day, I can always deliver happiness through a genuine smile. Being Happy, Healthy and Fit means being grateful for your friendships, acting as your own gardener, allowing your soul to blossom and then spreading the Love and Light. Take a moment today to make someone else's day. Tell them how much you love and appreciate them.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Love: The Most Powerful Force in the Universe

I have come to expect the unexpected. I have learned that the questions can change, but the answers remain the same.

When Fred (name changed for privacy) came around the bend flailing his arms and shouting, I just smiled. I have a soft spot in my heart for has-been celebrities, athletes and public figures. I truly do not envy the struggle they must endure going from being famous to being an every day person. Working at the golf course has given me an up close and personal opportunity to observe many local and national celebrities and sports figures as they transition from seemingly immortal to being mere mortals.

Today, Fred wanted to know if it was true that "I knew martial arts and all that shit." This always makes me laugh. However, I was a little surprised when he jumped out of his cart and came at me. He wanted to know what I was going to do if someone tried to attack me. He was actually standing there a grown man, former NBA player and coach, challenging me.

"I would give you a hug," I smiled and walked right into his arms and gave him a hug.

I am not sure who I surprised more: me, him or his golf buddy. He actually stood there dumbfounded, embraced me and was speechless. Then he handed me $5 to put toward my Mt. Kilimanjaro trekking fund and promised to contribute to it every time he sees me. I didn't give him a hug because I was looking for anything in return. It just seemed like the right answer to a question about violence.

What I felt when I hugged Fred was that he hasn't been hugged in a very long time. I actually felt bad for him. He approached me seeking to create fear, but I faced it with love. When fear knocks on the door and Love answers, who is there?

Love: It's the most Powerful Force in the Universe!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Mundane into Magic: Dust Off your Blessing!

I am not entirely sure that anyone actually enjoys cleaning their home. I don't mean putting things away so it looks tidy. I mean really getting down and dirty: baseboards, toilets, underneath and behind hard to reach areas. However, ignoring the dust and dirt will not make it go away. You can always call a maid to come in and take care of your dirty work, but there is something mystically soul cleansing about excavating your own hidden dust and dirt.

In diligently working to retrieve my own soul, it has been called to adventure. I pulled out my passport this weekend to send away for a visa. It required that I have at least two blank pages. Much to my horror, it had several blank pages. In fact, after flipping through slowly twice, it undeniably has only one stamp. I renewed my passport in 2004 and started a new business in the same month. I gave myself a break, but remembered that my previous passport took me around the world.

What does cleaning have to do with my passport? Today, instead of cleaning and feeling annoyed. I cleaned and beamed! I traveled back in time. I dusted treasures from Jamaica, Australia, New Zealand, Greece, Italy and Turkey. I vacuumed rugs from Hong Kong and Egypt. Each carefully selected item captures an experience and a memory. It is through experiences that we connect to the world.

I have been blessed and I am blessed. I have seen many amazing things and met many amazing people. I am grateful that I dusted off my passport and remembered that I love adventure. Turn any situation from mundane to magical by choosing a winning attitude. Dust off your own blessings today. You too, may be able to go around the world and never have to leave your home! At the very least, you may just find a misplaced piece of your own soul. :-)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Create Miracles: Stretch into the Unknown

Stretching beyond your comfort zone is uncomfortable, but that is where the growth occurs. Of course, this makes sense when we think of doing the splits or better yet the standing splits or reaching for our toes. However, more practically, opportunities for stretching appear every day in every way. Take time to notice where you can expand and grow today.

Recently, I stopped into Trader Joe's for some fresh flowers and a few other items before I had to rush home and then over to teach yoga. When I got to the register, I noticed the man behind me had only a prepackaged bag of apples. In my place of practicing conscious acts of compassion, I suggested he go ahead of me with his one item. I was in a hurry so I knew this would make me uncomfortable, but he made a joke about having six items, since there were six apples. I laughed and grabbed a Free Trade dark chocolate bar while standing in line. Then the stretching came.

Somehow the unimaginable happened. He engaged in conversation with the cashier and then they were off to the produce section looking for what he really wanted- Honey Crisp apples. I remained standing with my arms full and the clock ticking. Time was quickly running out for me to be on time. I decided to practice being patient, because getting upset wasn't going to get him back any faster. I gave him the spot in line and now I was going to be annoyed? Who wants a gift from someone that they will later begrudge you?

He was apologetic. I thanked him for the opportunity to be patient. I stretched. It was uncomfortable, but I really did grow more patient. I realized as I was standing there that it is no longer uncomfortable for me to allow someone to go ahead of me in line. It was, however, uncomfortable for me to wait. If you want to keep growing, you will have to keep stretching.

Amazing miracles happen when we step outside our comfort zone. As soon as I left the store, my phone rang and it was a potential client I have been trying to land for two years. She was almost begging for my servies. Being Happy, Healthy and Fit means being willing to stretch past your limited beliefs in mind, body and spirit every single day. Growth may be painful, but what does not grow, dies. Get busy finding your tightness today and start stretching and LIVING!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Pizza Pose: Yoga Connects You to the Courage of your Inner 5-year old

I knew as soon as I met Sophie that she possessed tremendous courage.

"Where in life do you see triangles?"

Without hesitation, Sophie blurted out, "Pizza!"

It was so pure and true. She was making a connection. I grinned from ear to ear and realized that she was spot on. To a 5-year old, pizza is a triangle. Within an instant, everyone else laughed and told her that pizzas are round. Suddenly, I was conscious of a spirit getting squashed right before my eyes. I wondered at what age we lose our voice and lose our confidence.

I kept my moment private and and told Sophie that I loved her answer and she was right. When I proceeded to ask the older girls about triangles, they all showed me the different parts of their bodies that shaped triangles, when they were in Triangle pose. They answered what they thought I wanted to hear.

We are all messengers and teachers. Every time we open our mouth and speak, we have the power to change the course of a lifetime. It is said that there are no bad dancers; only those who have been told that they cannot dance and stopped trying. Learn to speak consciously, for unconscious dialogue may cut off someone else's creativity for a lifetime. We never know how far our words will travel and the influence they will have.

Would you have the courage to yell out that pizza is a triangle and the mental flexibility to see it as such?

Being Happy, Healthy and Fit means having the courage to say how you really feel and the confidence to live out loud. It is not important to figure out where your spirit may have gotten squashed, it is only important to remember that at one time your creative spirit believed you could have it all. You still can! Inside each one of us is that 5 year-old full of hopes, dreams and possibilities. Yoga is a great way to reconnect your mind, body and spirit!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Mother Nature Hails a Great Reminder

Hail you can see causes damage on a physical level.
Hail you cannot see causes damage on a soul level.
Learn to weather the storms!

When the sky quickly turned from blue to an eerie black on Tuesday afternoon, the feeling of impending doom was undeniable. The Light sky had been replaced by darkness and suddenly sheets of hail were pelting down. It was raining golf balls.

No one had to be told to run for cover. Innately, we know to protect ourselves from the elements. To stand outside in the middle of a hail storm and be pelted by something that will cause pain would be considered insane. A Hail storm is not personal. We would not consider going outside and engaging in a fight with Mother Nature. We recognize it, acknowledge it and act accordingly.

In life, it is not uncommon to find yourself in the middle of a metaphorical hail storm. The trick is to remember that it is not personal. When you find yourself feeling pelted by hail in the form of worry, anxiety, fear, pessimism, anger and negative fantasies, recognize it, acknowledge it and run for cover. Sometimes we are the creators of our own hail storms and sometimes we are caught in the middle of someone else's. Either way, protect yourself and know that this too shall pass.

In the literal sense, insurance companies know that hail can cause devastating damage. They encourage you to learn to recognize the weather conditions that cause hail storms. Take the necessary precautions to protect yourself.

A cold heart is an opening for a hail storm. Warm your heart and let a gentle radiance of Light flood your heart and mind. Being Happy, Healthy and Fit means knowing how to recognize and weather the storms. Thank you Mother Nature.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Be a Being Being

"If the dream is big enough, the facts don't matter."
~ Dexter Yager

Life is full of options. Everyday we get the choice to expand, contract, curl up in a ball of self pity or be a victim of tough luck. Life is like a buffet and we don't even have to leave the couch to choose our plate full.

Ideas are just ideas until we implement them. This is true in business and in life. The idea of consciousness and the Laws of the Universe are just ideas as well. That is, until you decide to challenge them and then they become beliefs. This technology of belief has been documented all the way back to 3400 years ago, with the parting of the Red Sea. It wasn't until the Israelites were nostril deep in water with complete certainty and conviction did the they receive their passage to freedom.

Freedom is doing what you love and living in spirit. Prison is a result of being trapped by negative thoughts. Learn to free your mind and the rest truly will follow.

It takes conscious effort to learn to Be. We are trained to believe that we must Do. When the opportunity to cross the Grand Canyon came up last month, my heart was singing. I knew I was destined to make this journey on September 28th. Oddly, everything kept falling through. The only thing I was left with was a complete knowing that I was going. It was the first time in my life that I really felt complete certainty. There was no room for doubt. I truly didn't have any. Time was ticking and the date was getting closer and the people who care about me were tremendously concerned that I was going alone. I was clearly unstoppable. I would say out loud that the Universe was going to provide me the highest and best partner. It did.

This amazing journey across the Grand Canyon served to remind me that if you really believe something with all of your heart you will Become that. It is no coincidence that two days later, I was sitting with Ali Vincent, the first woman to win the Biggest Loser. She shared her amazing story of knowing that she would be that 1st woman to win. She shared her trials and tribulations about getting kicked off the show and never stopped believing. The show actually changed and decided to bring back couples that had been kicked off. Even when she was at home, she never stopped believing and ultimately did come back and win. Her book just came out Believe it! Be it!

Next time it seems that life isn't working the way you want it to, challenge your beliefs. You can believe there is something higher and better, thereby Expanding. You can fill yourself with doubt and Contract back to life as usual. You can feel sorry for yourself and Curl up in a ball of self pity. Or, you can use your anger as fuel and tell the whole world how you got cheated and Be a victim of Tough luck.

I encourage you to be a Being Being. You don't have to leave your seat to choose a conscious expanding thought. Believe you already have what you want. The details don't matter. They will magically fall into place. In the picture you will see us celebrating with a cold beer. I'm celebrating more than the journey of Rim2Rim in a day; I am celebrating the power of being a Being Being!