How Are You Living by Design?

How are you living by design?

In 2009,  I took a few months to “be still” so I could “get clear” and then “choose well.” I started drinking fresh “live” juices as a part of my diet, I vacationed in Puerto Rico and was able to enjoy the company of great friends, wonderful weather and of course, salsa dancing.  I have been fine tuning my personal guidance system (PGS) and I am continuing to create the life experiences I desire.

Social media has continued to climb in usage from Facebook, to Twitter, to You Tube.  I’ve returned to embracing aspects of technology including Facebook and this blog as ways to stay connected.  As human beings we have the power of choice. We often forget that we have the ability to fully engage in life or to simply live our lives on auto pilot. I am choosing to “Live by Design.”

It’s been 10 years since I wrote my book, Why Struggle? life is too short to wear tight shoes and yes, I’m still meditating daily and still recommending everyone, (yes, everyone can benefit) take at least a minimum of five minutes (300 seconds) to be still…so they can get clear… and choose well. Here’s a quick meditation for you. This one minute meditation will remind you to BREATHE – http://bit.ly/8GQ5th.

If you are looking for stocking stuffers  or gifts for the holiday season, I’m offering several specials on my website, www.dontstress.net, for my book and cd.

I’m completing my program, “Live More, Stress Less” in a few weeks and will be offering this course as well as a few other programs live and virtual programs in 2010.  I am on Facebook and would enjoy connecting with you if we aren’t already connected you can reach me at facebook.com/barbarafaison.

Please share this blog with your friends, family, colleagues or organizations.  If you are interested in mini-workshops, group sessions or book clubs, email me at barbara@dontstress.net.   I also want to know what things you are doing to create the life you desire.

Remember to take the time to be still, get clear and choose well so you can Live By Design.

Going Home

IMG_2391

Lacee

IMG_2389

Mom The Sage

“I’m going home, to a place where I belong where your love has always been enough for me… Cause these places and these spaces are getting old. I’m going home.”   Lyrics from Home by Chris Daughtry

Going home for me means I am going to visit my mother, the Sage of life. We have our usual things that we do on my monthly visits that I have learned to treasure. If I arrive on Friday and I am not too tired we sit and talk. On Sat morning we eat a great breakfast after I get up…no matter what time. At home, I sleep in and enjoy being in a place filled with loving memories.

During and after breakfast, we chat…and chat…and laugh. The weekend is filled with fried fish on Saturday evening and leftover fish and grits for Sunday breakfast and a lot of life talks  and laughter with the food. While we are chatting, Lacee, my mother’s lovable Yorkipoo, usually jumps in my lap. Lacee has figured out our routine. Food fellowship, then out for fun! Lacee uses this time to remind us that as a “lapdop” she wants her “lap” time before we get out in the streets. Lacee also knows that I will take her for a long walk before we leave. When feels like we have laughed and chatted enough she will jump down and look at me with those puppy dog eyes as if to say, “Are you ready yet?”

When she sees me put my shoes on she starts running in a circle from sheer excitement. After we walk Lacee comes back and drinks some water and plops down on the cool tile floor. I shower and mom and I are off to run errands and continue to enjoy our time together.  Going home and spending time with my mother is a ritual I treasure that is priceless.

Home is one place I can rejuvenate, recharge, regroup, relax and be reminded of the simple pleasures of life. I am HOME… a place where I belong.

Where do you go or what do to recharge? I would enjoy your thoughts.

How are you living? (Part II) Fresh Juice Recipes

my green juice

                                               Fresh Juice Recipes

I decided to list the fresh juices I have been trying and some recommended
suggestions from friends who have been juicing longer than I.  As I get better with
the combinations I will share the amounts, right now I’m just looking at what I have
andguessing what amounts will produce the amount of juice I want, it’s pretty fun.

This is getting interesting and I’m getting creative as Gregory notes in another post.
Here are the juices I’ve freshly juiced thus far along with the others from friends.

Barbara’s Juice Combos
8/29/09 – Pineapple and pear – VERY YUMMY!
8/30/09 – Spinach, celery, parsley, kale & apple
8/31/09 –  Leek, spinach, romaine lettuce, celery, a little bit of red pepper and
ginger – pretty SPICY
9/1/09 –     Cucumber, romaine lettuce, parsley, celery, kale, apple and a little bit of
ginger – light tasting
9/2/09 –    Spinach, red kale, apple, a little bit of giner, celery, and parsley – I had
some leftover stuff and and threw it all in the batch
9/3/09 –    Celery, cucumber, red kale, spinach and a little bit of ginger
9/4/09 –    Red Kale, red bell pepper, gala apple and little bit of ginger
9/5/09 –    3/4 cored pineapple, 1 grapefruit, small sliver of ginger
9/6/09 –    1/2 cored pineapple, 1 pear, 1 peach, small sliver of ginger – YUMMY!
9/7/09 –    carrot, apple & a small sliver of ginger – Pretty good
romaine lettuce, dino kale, celery, apple, a small sliver of ginger -good

9/8/09 –    Romaine lettuce, dino kale, celery, apple, a small sliver of ginger -good
9/9/09 –    8 carrots, 1 gala apples, sliver of ginger – Pretty good- made about 12 oz.
9/10/09 –  1/2 Cantalope – Pretty good – made about 5 oz.
9/11/09 –  Dino kale, spinach, green apple, sliver of ginger – okay.
9/12/09 –  Pineapple, pear – good
9/13/09 –   Dino kale, 1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger (okay)
9/14/09 –   Dino kale, 1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger  (okay)
9/15/09 –  1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger (okay)
9/16/09 –  1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger (okay)
9/17/09 –   Dino kale, 1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger  (okay)
9/18/09 –   Dino kale, 1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger  (okay)
9/19/09 –   1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger (okay)
9/20/09 –   1 small beet root, celery, romaine lettuce, sliver of ginger (okay)
9/21/09 –   Carrots, 1 gala apples, sliver of ginger – Pretty good
9/22/09 –  endive, romaine lettuce, apples, ginger – (too strong ;-(

Here’s one from Gregory Fitzpatrick, thanks for the amounts. 🙂
Carrot, beet, parsnips, and ginger. Try starting out with 2 or 3 parsnips,
1/4 of a medium size beet, 1/2 the length of your thumb of ginger, 5 carrots.
Yummy. Then play with it on amounts.

Asia Hadley, likes kale and apple,  thanks for sharing. 🙂 Check out her blog at http://beaconsfrontline.com/

There are many resources on juicing and benefits of doing so you can
search to check out different thoughts about it.

Here’s a great overview from my Wellness Center- Life Empowerment Institute:
http://www.trustedhands.com/content/juicingarticle.html

I’ d love to list your favorite juices and suggestions, so please share. I can’t wait to
to see what you come up with.

How are you living? Part I- (Healthy Eating)

Embrace Change
How am I treating my body?

Living by design means to consciously create the life you want to live.
Every moment of our lives we are making choices that will have a tremendous
effect on what we do.  Some of the things we might do include eating, talking,
drinking, laughing and sharing our life experiences.

A few things to consider as we are creating the lives we want to live:

How am I treating my body? What type of loving care am I giving my body to
show my appreciation? Am I eating (most of the time) foods that are nourishing
and healthy?

Last week I agreed to support a friend who had started juicing fresh fruits and
vegetables.  I believe that if things come into my life a few times, and I am paying
attention, I need to act on them.  When Kym mentioned that she was doing
fresh juices, I knew I had to do something; the third time was the charm.
I own a very nice juicer from over four years ago when I played around with
fresh juices then. Plus, my chiropractor, Dr. Cara has been recommending
that I add it back into my diet for awhile now.
So, off to juicing I go.

I made the commit to start to add fresh fruit and veggie juices into my eating plan
and I’ve been enjoying getting creative with the options.  I’ve listed below a few
juices I’ve tried.

Green veggies:
*Spinach, kale, celery, parsley, romaine lettuce, apple
*Cucumber, romaine lettuce, parsley, celery, apple
*Romaine lettuce, kale, apple, ginger – my favorite so far

Fresh fruit juice:
I had 2 pears that were on their way out, I mixed with some fresh pineapple…YUMMY

Let me know how you are living and appreciating your body with healthy foods and
nutrition.  If you have a favorite juice, please share with us.

Opening the door

Opening the door to being still

Opening the door to being still

Five Ways to find time to “Be Still”

Greetings,
Okay, here’s the deal.  I have so many people tell me they can’t find the time to Be Still so they can Get Clear…and then Choose well.  Here are a few ways to add this essential practice into your life.  Some of these may be a bit amusing, but they have been proven to work.

1.  When driving in the car – don’t turn on music or radio or talk…simply
drive and pay attention to what’s around you.
2.   When in the bathroom – at home or work – take an extra few minutes
and  close your eyes and breathe in and out for a few moments.
3.   When you take a lunch break – go to a room or outside and sit and take
in a few conscious breaths.
4.   If you have children, I’ve been told going into the closet is a great place
to hide out for a few minutes.
5.  When you get to work or your destination…sit in the car for a few
minutes and breathe in and out.

Remember, taking the time to Be Still and connecting with your breath plants you into the PRESENT moment.  Focusing on breathing takes away your emphasis on thinking and puts you in a state of BEING.

Let me know if any of these work, or if you any thoughts you would like to share.

PGS- Personal Guidance System

  Your PGS

PGS – Personal Guidance System

I just returned from Puerto Rico; the beautiful people, weather and of course salsa dancing helped me relax, recharge and rejuvenate.  Walking on the beach enjoying the sand, I was reminded of how important is is to be still, get clear and choose well.   I was reminded of how important it is that I connect with my PGS…read on.

I received a great surprise gift for Christmas, a GPS system.  This great piece of technology helps me find my way to a destination and even offers points of interest on my journey.  I can connect with this tool to be sure that I make it to many places, often unknown to me.  I have friends who use their GPS exclusively to get around on a daily basis.

We all have a PGS- Personal Guidance System – inside of us – all we have to do is connect. Your PGS is inside you and waiting for you to tune in and connect.  If you start using this system, you can connect with it anytime to remind you of where you are and where you want to go.  Simply be still and ask. When I take the time be still, I connect with my PGS and start that moment from a place of peace, calm and focus.  Here are a few steps to help you start connecting with your PGS:

1.  Find a place where you can be alone for a few minutes. ( you decide how long that is)
2.  Sit in a comfortable position with your back straight.
3.  Relax your hands and close your eyes.
4.  Start to recognize your breathing and sit and breathe.
5.  Allow your thoughts to flow – don’t try to control your thoughts.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on how you connect with your PGS, please leave a comment below.

What do you move to?

Salsa dancing
I’ve made a commitment to do more cardio in my workouts so I’ve been riding the bike and walking on the treadmill. I enjoy  salsa dancing as a form of exercise and fellowship.  If  I could dance salsa all the time that would be great. I am committed to do more cardio in other ways so that means I need a little help to keep me pumped up. I was listening to one of my workout playlists which consists of 11 songs.

A few of the lyrics stuck in my mind as I was walking on the treadmill.  I love music and movies as great teaching tools and reminders of life lessons. Songwriters are artists and often say things more eloquently than we can through their expressions of songand art. A few excerpts from these songs are below – they are great reminders of things about life- these are a few wonderful reminders of  knowing who you are, being comfortable with who you are and being hopeful.

Who are you? are you really a gem – then don’t be a hard rock and pretend to be someone you aren’t

Lauren Hill’s –  Doo Wap Song -“That Thing Called Love” – for the girls – “don’t be a hard rock when you really are a gem. Respect is just the minimum.” For the guys – “How you gonna win when you ain’t right within…come again.”

Are you comfortable in your own skin?
Mary J. Blige’s – “Work That”
“Let em get mad
They gonna hate anyway
Don’t you get that?
Doesn’t matter if you’re going on with their plan
They’ll never be happy
Cause they’re not happy with themselves ”

What are you hopeful about?

India Arie’s – “There’s Hope”

“There’s hope.
It doesn’t cost a thing to smile.
You don’t have to pay to laugh.
You better thank God for that.”

Music changes your brain chemistry and helps when you exercise.  One of my workout playlists is below:

Whatta Man- Salt & Pepa
 I Am Not my Hair- India Arie
We B. Doing it -Quincy Jones
Georgy Porgy- Eric Benet
There’s Hope – India Arie
Doo Woop(That Thing) – Lauren Hill
Bring it On – Seal
Hit the Road Jack- Ray Charles
Shoop- Salt & Pepa
Just Fine- Mary J. Blige
If That was your Boyfriend – Michelle Ndegeocello.

Let me know any lyrics that resonate with you by leaving a comment below.

Three Tips for Designing your Holiday Season

Life is Peaceful.

Life is Peaceful.

How are you feeling about the holiday season? Some people find this time of the year exciting and love the energy that it brings.  Other people find this time emotionally challenging due to many personal circumstances.  Take the time to check in with yourself to see how you are feeling these days. The holiday season is here and will come around every year at the same time. This is your opportunity to design the experience you want to live. Here are a few tips to consider as you decide how you want to create your holiday season:

Be Grateful. Take a moment to really take a serious look at where you are right now. Remember that the news is designed to provide updates on things that are not necessary positive. The media and people around us may paint a picture that may not apply to what is happening in your world. What are you tuning into these days?  How often are you tuning in? How are your emotions affected by what you listen to, who are you are around? There is always something to be grateful for: sight, touch, taste, hearing, talking, walking. Be creative and find something.

Be Engaged! Don’t you love technology? I do. The internet, cell phones and computers allow us to feel connected as often as we want to. We can email, instant message, and text message people any time we feel the urge. Take the time over the holidays to be more engaged in person with people and allow the technology to rest.  There is nothing more special than having heartfelt conversations and laughing and enjoying good company.  How can you connect more with the people you enjoy spending time with? Ask yourself, do I really need to have the cell phone on when were are together? Your family, friends, and people you are with will appreciate this simple gesture.

Be Thoughtful. Every moment you have a choice. Even when you don’t feel like you have a choice, you do. Take the time to pay attention to what you are feeling and how you are responding to people around you. Are you spending time with the people you really want to be with right now? If you are that is wonderful! If you aren’t, get clear about how you want to change that picture. Every moment is an opportunity to be mindful about the choices you make every day. When you decide what you want, move in the direction that will get you where you want to be. 

Remember that CALM and CHAOS come from the same place, your mind. 😉  Be ever wonderful and make the choices that allow you to create the life you want to live!

Let me know your thoughts by clicking the comment button, I’d like to know what you have to say.

How are you treating life these days?

Barbardos- June 2008

Greetings,

How are you treating life these days? Yes, that’s right. Instead of saying, “How are you doing? Or How’s life? I started asking people, “How are you treating life?” Hmmm…now that’s different right? It makes you think about what YOU are doing in your life. A dog is a dog. A cat is a cat. As human beings we have the power of choice. We often forget that we have the ability to fully engage in life or to simply live our lives on auto pilot. To truly LIVE Life is a choice. Making specific and conscious choices is what I call, “Living by Design.”

1999, I wrote my book, Why Struggle? Life is too short to wear tight shoes as a mini compendium of ideas, thoughts, philosophies and tips for helping me manage life’s unpredictable changes and to help me learn to Live by Design. Around that same time I started dabbling with meditation and relaxation techniques but I didn’t quite dedicate myself to the practice.

Being a student of life and growth, I decided I would give meditation a try, why not? Sitting and being still was very challenging at first- now, I don’t start my day without at least 600 seconds (10 minutes) of silence or meditation. A few months ago I released my meditation cd, Be Still: Learn to Meditate in 10 Minutes a Day  and I have been truly honored by the positive responses.

Daily we brush our teeth, shower and prepare ourselves to go out into the world. Meditation is mental hygiene. It is one way to prepare our mind for our day. Meditation provides mental clarity. Consistently meditating as little as 3 minutes a day ensures more focus, greater clarity and less stress. At work or in our careers we train ourselves about things we don’t know. Why not train your mind to manage your thoughts and emotions more effectively? Why not use this amazing tool to create what you want?

Do you have 600 seconds a day that you can devote to yourself? Don’t you deserve 10 minutes a day to be with yourself? In less than 10 minutes a day you can start making changes in your life that will impact every choice you make with more awareness and clarity.I’m offering several specials on my website, www.dontstress.net, for my book and cd.

ONLINE Special Pricing – available at www.dontstress.net.

Be Still CD – $15.00 (regular price- $16.95)
Be Still CD Special – 3 CD’S for $45.00
Be Still MP3 – Download Available immediately for only $13.00
Why Struggle? Book – 1 for $9.95
Why Struggle? Book Special – 3 for $25.00
Don’t Stress Special – 1 book + 1 CD – $24.95

Take a 5 minute break…Listen to a sample meditation from Be Still:Learn to Meditate in 10 Minutes a Day
Please take five minutes for yourself and be still, get clear so you can choose well. You can listen to a five minute sample from the CD several ways:

1. Click this link to listen through streaming: http://www.byoaudio.com/play/WdX5zMwx
2. View relaxing images and listen at You Tube. (be sure to leave a comment)
3. Visit my website, www.dontstress.net and listen to samples.

Please share this email with your friends, family, colleagues or organizations.  If you are interested in mini-workshops, group sessions or book clubs, email me at barbara@dontstress.net.

Remember to take the time to be still, get clear and choose well. Create a the day YOU want to live.