Episode 80: What's Meant For You Will Find You with Mariaestela Gullestrap

One fascinating inquiry that guides my curiosity and was an essential building block that led to the creation of this podcast is:

How do we end up doing the work that we do?

In specific, what I really mean to explore is

How do people end up doing work that totally lights them up?

How can we live lives that feel purposeful?

What can we do to ensure that we take our right path...the best path for ourselves?

I’ve been completely captivated by these questions ever since the first time I ever felt “stuck” in life. They seemed more reachable than the sometimes intimidating and seemingly amorphous existential questions of “why are we here?” or “why am I here?” (although these are fun to contemplate too). In the end, these question are in and of the same as there is only one essential truth. But there are many paths to get here and at times the initial questions just seem more palpable than the last.

Good thing that Spiritual Business Coach, Mariaestela Gullestrap is on the same wavelength! In this episode we explore these questions and Mariaestela lends the wisdom that she’s collected from her own journey into this inquiry. One of my biggest takeaways from our conversation is that we can be prescribed a hundred thousand million kajillion famillion strategies/habits/skills to “get it right” but at the end of the day, it boils down to a very simple piece of knowledge that we already know at some level or another.

Live your life. Choose love.

Live your life. Whether you like it or not, your life is already unfolding. Instead of worrying and fighting and trying to control it to look a certain way, just try going with it. See what happens. It’s already started and it’s already bringing you to where you need to be.

Choose love. Make the choices that make you feel light and expansive - that’s the real you. Anything that shrinks and suffocates you is not you.

Damn. As always, the most powerful wisdom is the simplest (I didn’t say easiest ;))

Okay plug in those earbuds and listen away! Maybe have a journal ready, there are some mighty nuggets you might want to remember!

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Key Nuggets: 

You don’t find your purpose, your purpose finds you.  You just need to be ready to hear it and willing to listen

  • What Mariaestela has learned from her own journey is that it’s all about the continuous practice of surrender and that there can be so many lessons in the darkness. Sometimes the pain becomes so great that it’s easier to actually surrender to something bigger

  • Surrender is an internal process but it also has an external result

  • In her own story, she realizes that she’s been preparing all her life for the work that truly lights her up. The preparation came naturally as it has been in being an older sister and the friend that everyone confided in

How to find balance between the seen and unseen (energy and concrete action)

  • When you feel resistance, give yourself some space

  • Take what serves and leave the rest. What resonates with your truth?  That’s your guide.  We keep looking outside of ourselves but you already know that the answer is inside

  • There’s a moment when it clicks! Don’t think that you have to max out your credit card or jump off planes.  Live your life and it will unfold!

  • And when in doubt always default to the mantra of “choosing love”. In fact, a practice that Mariaestela suggests is to put a reminder alarm in your phone to CHOOSE LOVE. When she initiated this practice for herself, everything changed


  • Spirituality for For Mariaestela is everything that can support you in lifting the veil. “God is one song but there are many DJs”.  Basically the vast and expansive universe. Her spiritual practice is truth, her values, her practices, faith , beliefs, how she shows up in her world.

  • We’re all weaved from this source of love and there is something bigger than us

Is it fear or love?

  • Inspired action: being willing to listen to what you’re being called forth to do and then being wiling to do it.  Take one tiny step at a time knowing that you expand in love –then next thing will show up, next thing will show up…

  • It’s about the activation because if you don’t then the shadow self starts coming up

  • Answer for yourself: How do you tap into the right energy?

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

“Love is The Way - not in the airy fairy, unicorns, rainbows and butterflies kinda way, although who doesn’t love unicorns! LOL I’m a firm believer in expansion from a space of love, meaning that as we review and build our day, our lives, our businesses, really anything - make sure it’s done in a way that uplifts you and propels you forward rather than drag you down, which doesn’t serve you nor those you’re here to serve”

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

“Love is the way.  It’s better to take one small step than to plan out a hundred.  Start where you are and do what you can with what you have.  Trust that you already have everything that you need to take the next step right now.”


Podcast episode of Magdalene Voices that we talked about: Visibility and the Witch Wound

Mariaesta’s Freebie: Divine Clarity & Inspired Action

A Course In Miracle’s Begginer’s Guide


If you have any questions for Janice or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website: www.mariaestela.com

Email:  hello@mariaestela.com

Social Media: @xomariaestela

For more Monki goodness, follow me @curiousmonki on Instagram or Facebook.

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Episode 79: A Yogi’s Journey Toward Self Inquiry with Janice Brown

I’ve said this before - there are two monumentally life changing questions that usually dawn on us at some point in our journey. One of them is: What do I want?

And the other - even more profound, is Who am I?

Once either of them is bestowed upon us, we can count on the fact that our life we will never be the same. Not in a bad way. Actually, in a very good way. A transformative way. Because you can’t be presented with an existential question like that and not feel compelled to wonder about it.

It’s at that pivotal moment that a richer life suddenly becomes available to you. One where you get to look into the depths of everything that you are. One of self inquiry.

The kinds of questions you ask yourself will change your life

And so it begins with a single question. What follows is a colorful journey filled with trials, triumphs and lessons. Your story becomes a striking thread in the fabric of all existence. For some, your story will be that of guidance. For others, a point of connection.

Today, we get to hear of one such story. We get an inside look at what fellow yoga teacher, Janice Brown’s, journey has been like ever since the question of Who Am I? dawned on her. What’s it been like, what has she learned and how did/does she navigate the confusion and messiness that sometimes comes with facing our truth.

Janice is also a respiratory therapist who is working to bridge the gap between wellness and healthcare by making yoga practical and accessible to everyone.

The topic is deep but the conversation is full of laughs. We even talk about play at one point - and discovered that both of us have a childlike sense of fun (which I love!). The biggest message: IT DOESN”T HAVE TO BE SO HARD!!! Plug in those earbuds to get inspired and laugh along with us!

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Key Nuggets:

Reminder that we are holistic beings - mind, body, spirit and emotions work together. You can’t change one aspect without affecting the other. It’s this basis that motivates Janice to bridge the gap between wellness and healthcare.

Yoga and the Path of Self Inquiry

There were so many great reflection questions that came up in our conversation. When Janice first contemplated this question of who am I? Some follow up questions included:

Who is your true self?

What parts of your life have you been living as your true self?

These questions would be so good to journal on!

We live our life in paradoxes - even when it comes to something as holistic as yoga. Yoga is the union within yourself and outside of yourself (reconnecting to yourself but also realizing that we’re all interconnected). In in the physical poses, you can be both grounded and flying at the same time like in Warrior III. Yet in life we’re taught to live in a structure of boxes and labels. You are A or B (or in our conversation we used the Friends quiz as an example - you’re either Phoebe, Monica or Rachel. There’s no quiz to tell you how much of each you are). But it isn’t necessary to have this all or one mentality because we aren’t all or one. The truth is, we live on a spectrum. Our own unique cocktail of various traits. It’s when we force ourselves into boxes or labels that we force ourselves to be who we are not and in turn, suffer (because we’re living against our truth).

Lessons to Share From Self Inquiry: how did you perceive life in the world before vs. after moving toward self inquiry

Just like the labels, life used to be a set of rules but now life is so much more open. Janice lives with a lot more ease and the ability to chill out and trust. There’s definitely more faith that it will all turn out…and it always does.

One lesson Janice shares is that you don’t always have to follow the rules that were given to you. The world isn’t just a bunch of boxes &labels, it’s more dynamic than that. In fact, boxes & labels feeds into judgement.

Big idea:  when you see things holistically, you suffer less.  Ex. If you want to heal people and think that in order to do that, the only solution is to be a doctor, you trap yourself. You are devastated if you fail your MCAT. But the truth is, being a doctor isn’t your be all end all. If you really want, you take the MCAT again, but perhaps there’s something more magical in store for you. There are so many ways you can help heal others - but if you’r in a box you won’t see that.

What has the path been like

In Janice’s experience, it’s not like there were big stepping stones. It was more like a little pebble trail. First thing she learned to move forward was knowing to say no to what doesn’t inspire her and simply saying YES to all that inspires her (ex. Backstage work at community theatre, improv…). These little pebbles all lead her to where she is today

There will be moments when you have a hard time deciding. You’ll wonder if this is the right thing. And there will also be times where it’s messy, confusing and basically you’re wondering WTF. It all makes sense in hindsight. Plus you don’t even need to know exactly where it’s going to go anyway. Just keep following what inspires you and trust that, that will lead the way.

Yoga can be a powerful tool to help you sit with what is. To let go of the clinging and attachment of needing to know and holding onto control.

Important Questions when things don’t go the way you want them to:

What is this telling me? If you don’t know, just let it go for now.  The answer will come. It always works out for her.  Just chill. Let go.  And it all works out.

Slow down and pay attention to your emotions. What’s it telling you, where do you feel the discomfort.


Tips for having fun:

Fun is creativity and aliveness

Look for what’s fun: find what inspires you

Ultimately, as you learn to let go and not force yourself into a box and look cool or professional and whatever else you think you should be like, ask yourself the question: WHO DO YOU WANT TO BE?

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

Get to know yourself. Do this by looking for what inspires you. To know yourself means ease.  It is sukha (sweetness)

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

Be kind to yourself and get selfish.  It’s totally okay!                                                                                        


If you have any questions for Janice or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  https://www.yogamoments.ca

Facebook: @Yoga Moments

Instagram: @yogamoments_canada

Youtube: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCENnOiTe6uAxixy0Adq7e1w

For more Monki goodness, follow me @curiousmonki on Instagram or Facebook.

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Episode 78: How Crystal Healing Really Works with Jessica Roth

Jessica Roth is a Certified Crystal Healer and Certified ThetaHealer (energy work) that utilizes crystals and energy for healing of the mind, body & soul. She’s extremely intuitive, which allows her to guide people towards healing and connecting with themselves on deeper levels. She loves to help others learn how to work with energetic tools so that they can efficiently transmute influences that might be affecting their own physical and emotional wellbeing. Teaching and empowering about crystals and energy is her passion - she is the creator and founder of crystal healing courses and a Crystal Healer Certification program, based in San Diego California.

In this episode we talk about - you guessed it - CRYSTALS!

My earliest memory of crystals are the bins of little mix & match ones that you could get a gift shops. There would be a chart of what each one’s healing properties were. As a kid, I loved seeing what each rock (what I called them back then) could help with. If you’ve ever been to Banff, Alberta you would’ve come across one of these bins for sure!

As a grown up, I’ve taken a workshop or two about crystals. They usually bring in a few different ones and go over what the healing properties are. It’s like a live class of those charts I used to read. They’ve been enjoyable but I haven’t learned much beyond what does what. Today, I own a few beautiful crystals and hold the same curious candor for them as I did when I was a kid but I haven’t learned to use them beyond the psychological effect of having something comforting around (like a blankie).

But that all changes with my conversation with Jessica Roth!

If you’ve been interested in learning more about how crystals actually work and how to use them, you need to listen in! Jessica affectionately shares what she knows about crystals & energy. She also efficaciously answers all of my burning questions about crystals like: how can they actually change your vibration? (spoiler: if you think about it in terms of energy, it makes a lot more sense!) Does size matter? What’s up with “cleaning” your crystals - do we actually need to do that? If so, what’s the best method?

This is a fun one to listen to! Go on, plug in those earbuds!

Share your comments or questions below to keep the conversation going.

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Key Nuggets:

Theta Healing

Since Jessica is also a Theta Energy Healer, we get to learn a bit about what Theta healing is. Basically it’s energy healing where your guided in a conversation to reveal subconscious blockages which then is released by the energy work.

Jessica loves using Theta healing to release these blockages and uses crystals to fill in the space with good vibes.

 Crystal Healing 101

Jessica gives us the scoop on crystals: how they work, does size matter and what energy has to do with all of this.

Crystals hold a certain vibration

It’s all about energy – each crystal has a certain energy and so do we.  That’s why we each react to the energy of a crystal differently.

The healing part of crystals is that it can be used to shift your vibration. Jessica explains exactly how/why it has the power to do that in our conversation. In a nutshell, we’re roller coasters of energy during daily life and our energy may fluctuate depending on what comes into our surroundings (ex. we may feel anything between love, happiness, fear, guilt….throughout the day. If somebody comes in and yells at us, we immediately change energetic states).

The intention that you use a crystal with also affects what it does for you.

When crystal comes into our space we start to match their vibrations (entrain) – this shift can happen in just a few minutes.

Depending on how sensitive to energy you are, you may have stomach gurgles or even tingles

Do we need to clean our crystals and why?

Jessica gives her explanation of why we should clean our crystals and how to do it. In a nutshell, the energy we carry can leave an “energy print” on the crystal (kind of like a fingerprint after you touch a glass). It’s like a residue that gets stuck to the crystal and if it’s somebody else’s “energy print” that’s left on your crystal then you may want to clear it.

How to work with crystals:

Jewelry, put it in your pocket, carry it in your bra, under your pillow, use in sacred circles….

Jessica’s Favorite Crystals:

Black Tourmaline to ground, reconnect with body, remove anxiety, remove energy from electronics

Quartz to clear and use as an all purpose crystal.  Be careful because it amplifies so make sure you are clear on what you’re trying to amplify.

Amazonite (teal blue-green color) – for throat and heart chakra.  Calming and balancing and communicating from the heart

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

One of the most important questions that she was asked is “how would you feel in 10 years if you stayed exactly where you are now?”.  Looking from this perspective of re-evaluating 10 years from now of what would you regret or not regret helps puts things into perspective.

If you’re not happy in your situation, make a change now.

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

“Start small with taking steps towards living a life that is more authentic to you... It doesn't have to be drastic like skydiving! Just be willing to explore new things, or revisit things that you used to love as a kid! This was huge for me, because being playful had been something I hadn't allowed myself to be after my parents had passed away and I was in survival mode. So painting, having a puppy/dog, getting back into dance/fitness, being curious about spirituality/crystals... it really opened me up to experiencing life differently.”


Jessica has a new online Intro Crystal Course. You can check it out here.


If you have any questions for Janice or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website: www.JessKayCrystals.com

Email: jess@jesskaycrystals.com

Social Media: @JessKayCrystals

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Episode 77: How To Boost Self Worth with Jen Miller

A feeling of unworthiness can inhibit us from living the fullest lives that we want. It can hold us back from the relationships, careers and ideas that we dream of because if we don’t feel worthy of them, we won’t even try. Or perhaps you do try but find yourself sabotaging yourself part way through. It totally sucks but how do we get over ourselves?

It all starts with understanding self-worth. What is self worth, what determines self worth, and how to boost self-worth?

In this episode, we get to talk to the bright & lovely Jen Miller all about this! Jen is a Holistic Wellness Coach and Certified Holistic Nutritional Consultant (C.H.N.C) whose own journey with self worth and anxiety has provided her with golden nuggets of wisdom that she now shares with us.

Jen specializes in stress resiliency and emotional wellbeing, and works with three pillars of wellness; nutrition, lifestyle and mindset. She’s all about supporting women with their wellness as they navigate various life transitions such as career change, getting married or going from your 20’s to your 30’s – all exciting times of life but also those that tend to bring more stress, anxiety or uncertainty.

Jen was so much fun to talk to and it was a conversation filled with tons of tips, tools and ideas for how to step back into your light. This episode is a little pot of gold for boosting self worth.

Plug in those earbuds, I can’t wait for you to listen!

PS. Click “read more” and scroll to “resource” to view titles of the books/podcasts mentioned.

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Upcoming workshops as mentioned in intro

Key Nuggets:

What’s Your Philosophy to Loving the life you love?

Check in with yourself regularly. Ask reflective questions like: What is my why? What am I still apologizing for? What am I doing that’s not a hell yes?

You need to keep noticing if you’re still in alignment even if you’re on a great path because if you just go on auto drive, you might find yourself getting led astray.

 Staying in Alignment

Sometimes we’re a square peg trying to fit into a round hole and don’t even know it. In other words, we’re completely out of alignment with our authentic selves but we don’t have awareness of it. That’s part of Jen’s story - she was trying to fit in, in a high paced, high stress work environment and was getting so exhausted; but she kept going anyway because she wasn’t aware that the role she was in was going against her true nature.

What are you doing that doesn’t completely light you up?

This comes back to checking in with yourself and identify any necessary course redirects (you’re allowed to change your mind!). Jen shares excellent questions to provoke alignment and how she reminds herself to do this practice.


Self Worth

What it is: Knowing that you’re worthy of anything you want in your life. Coming from positive energy rather than fear based.

Jen shares her story on how she’s come to understand her own self worth.

What a lack of it holds us back from: A feeling of unworthiness can inhibit you from living your fullest life because if you don’t think you’re worth it, you’re not going to let yourself have it (relationships, career, sense of validation…). Even if you start making your way to it, you’re likely sabotage yourself from fully basking in the desire.

Low self worth can show up as a constant need for external validation to feel good, a people pleasing mentality and choices that bring you further away from your authentic self.

Jen tells us of how her own self worth issues were reflected in her environment with mean girl relationships and the holding herself back from the “something more”that she knew she was meant for.

How to bust out and boost self worth:

             Start taking care of yourself a way that you haven’t before – sends message to self that you’re worthy of being taken care of. This was a catalyst for Jen.

Shift your perception - Jen listened to podcasts, read books, and listened to other people’s stories to expand what she know was possible for herself. Find things that open you up to new perspectives! Listen to different stories and look for the messages that resonate with you

Watch those little habits that shrink you! For example, look closely at what you’re apologizing for and approaching from a place of gratitude and appreciation if possible (ex. late emails. Instead of “sorry for the delayed reply” it can be “thank you for your patience with my reply”). Stop saying sorry for the little things that make you shrink.

TRUST in self knowing and that you already have everything that you need inside of you.

Jen tells us about her personal tools for self worth: journaling, reflection, boundaries, protecting energy

Are you a Highly Sensitive Person?

We took a fun and short pit stop to talk about HSP - a personality trait for depth of processing of sensory information. It ties into the conversation around feeling like a square peg trying to fit into a round hole. Highly sensitive persons process sensory information at an intensely deep level and can be highly impacted by sounds, sights, smells, people’s energies. Because of this, they can be easily overwhelmed or overstimulated.  Can feel like shutting down easily.

Planting the seed with this conversation to help you further understand yourself. When you can bring awareness into who you really are, then you can stop apologizing for why you don’t fit into the mold that you think you’re supposed to.

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

You don’t need external validation or approval to feel worthy of doing something.  You don’t need to wait for an invitation or permission either.

Another big lesson that Jen’s learned is that to make something happen, you can’t just sit and ruminate – you need to take steps toward it.

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

We reach for a lot of external resources to validate our choices/path but sometimes the most powerful thing you can do is to take time and allow yourself to reflect on what you already have inside.


The two books that helped Jen make the big shifts in her own self growth:

The Universe Has Your Back - Gabrielle Berstein

Intuitive Being - Jill Willard

Initial podcast that helped Jen shift her perception:

Happier with Gretchen Rubin


If you have any questions for Jen or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website: www.glowingmindswellness.com

Email: jen@glowingmindswellness.com

Instagram: @glowingmindswellness

Facebook: Glowing Minds Wellness

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Episode 76: How To Use Your Feelings To Guide You Into Alignment with AnneMarie McKenzie

Sometimes we’re lucky and we come across a new tool, concept or a change in perspective that changes our lives for the better. Maybe it’s the best travel pillow you’ve ever found (and will never ever travel without with again) or the concept of simplifying your life (#minimalism). Either way, it helps you live with more ease and you’re quality of life is much higher with it. Sometimes, we come across something even bigger than that - it answers something profound + deep within you. Like say some of life’s big questions like “What do I really want in life?”.

That’s what happened for me when my perspective of emotions and feelings was totally shifted. I was reading a book called The Desire Map and in it the author, Danielle LaPorte, proposed that we should allow our feelings to navigate our lives rather than our thinking. Saaaayyyy whhaaaaatt? Radical. My logical, thinking, Type A mind was quick to put its guard up.

“What is this craziness of feelings first? I thought we’ve been working hard to control these feelings so that it doesn’t interfere with our life. To keep it at bay, not let it rule the world.”

That was my lizard brain. My innermost self, however, loved it. The idea felt freeing - like as if I could finally just be me. You see, I had a lot of feelings but didn’t really know what to do with them. They were all scrambled and I felt ashamed to have so many to be honest. But now you’re telling me that they’re the answer to my life? JACKPOT!

In today’s episode, I chat with AnneMarie McKenzie, Master Desire Map Facilitator, about the concept around using our feelings and emotions to find alignment in our lives. Exactly how can we use this as our inner compass? Even if we know how we truly want to feel most of the time (Core Desired Feelngs) what tools/strategies can we implement to make sure that we engage them? Big picture - how can feeling what we desire to feel most of the time lead us to an aligned life?

Okie dokie, plug in those earbuds - this one is full of wisdom nuggets!

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Upcoming Desire Map Level 1 workshop as mentioned in intro

EARLYBIRD until May 1st

Key Nugget Discussed:

“Would you rather be right or be happy?” - Danielle LaPorte

How feelings & emotions guide our lives:

  • Feelings are the language of our soul, of the universe – embrace them.  Use them as a guidance system for your life. Use them for the choices you make

  •  Is there a difference between feelings and emotions?

  • All feelings are good - happiness, playfulness, anger, sadness….all of it. They all carry messages for you to learn from

  • Example of what anger means to you

Core Desired Feelings as your inner guide:

  • Live from your heart & soul because that’s who you really are. Anything but is just a facade.

  • Core Desired Feelings are the feelings that we want to feel most of the time - they are the expression of your innermost self. Our home base.

    • They are different for everyone

    • You can find your Core Desired Feelings through The Desire Map

  • Use Core Desired Feelings as a tool just as how you would use your yoga practice. Just as you would return to the mat again and again, come back to your Core Desire Feelings daily. It’s a powerful tool to help you through the throes of life. It’s how AnnMarie got through one of the most important parts of her life

  • Use your Core Desired Feelings to guide you by asking:

    • Does this person make you feel the way that you want to feel

    • Does this situation make you feel the way that you want to feel

    • Guide relationships – does it feel the way that you want to feel

    • If it’s not a “hell yes” it’s a “no”

  • Tools  for homing into desired feelings: “I AM” , gratitude , crystals, essential oils, mudras. These can be coupled with other tools that you’ve already collected along the way.  

 One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

“Gratitude is the most powerful tool we have free access to that can shift our perspective and mindset on a cellular level to come back to our soul.”

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

“Our feelings are our most untapped, valuable resource. They are the language of the Soul and the language of the Universe. To manifest a handcrafted life we love, we must build a relationship with our feelings. In doing so, this is strength training for our intuition, spiritual fitness, and our feelings end up becoming the compass for our Soul. THAT is when we truly become the creator of our own life.”


If you have any questions for AnnMarie or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website: annmariemckenzie.com

For more Monki goodness, follow me @curiousmonki on Instagram or Facebook.

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Episode 75: Magic Ingredients to Make Manifesting Work For You with Janice Berkenheger

This episode is an exciting one because we get to talk about MANIFESTING! Using the power of your own energy to intentionally create what you want in life. You’ve probably heard of the idea that your thoughts create your reality. Maybe you were around in 2008-ish when the book The Secret came out and this Law of Attraction stuff exploded.

That’s when I was first introduced to manifesting. — my boss at the time was ecstatic about The Secret and LOA. Her enthusiasm was contagious and naturally, the book started getting circulated among all 40 staff members.

I liked the book because it fortified my growing belief that there are forces operating beyond what we can currently see. That there’s a universe out there orchestrating rhyme and rhythm in this world…that we’re all here on purpose. I was intrigued by the idea that we can work with this force to manifest our desires into reality. But I was super skeptical of the formula that was provided “ask for it, believe it and then * poof* it’s yours”.

“If it were that easy,” I thought, “then why doesn’t everyone already have what they want?” I had many more follow up questions. I wish I knew somebody like Janice Berkenheger back then because she would’ve been able to pacify my leery suspicion of this whole Law of Attraction/Manifestation thing. Janice helps women discover how to consistently manifest what they want so that they can bring their dreams into reality. She’s spent the last 8 years or so studying and using this practice.

I’m so grateful for our wonderful conversation! The instructions for manifesting are simple - ask for it, believe it’s yours, then it will come to life, but there’s more to that. We talked a bit about what manifestation is and then went right into depth about how to use it, what’s wrong if it’s not working, and the magic ingredients to make it successful. My favorite part is when we dived into the parking lot example. Oh, that parking lot example! ….I hate it haha. This example has come up in so many books that I’ve read, even ones that aren’t about manifesting. It’s supposed to be an easy way to practice manifestation/trust/surrender/faith in the universe but I’m riddled with anxiety everytime I try. In our conversation, Janice tells me what I’m doing wrong.

Alrighty, plug in those headphones this one’s a good one!

Don’t forget to click “read more” for the amazing resources that Janice gives us including a free ebook and a list of universal laws.

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Upcoming workshops as mentioned in intro

Key Nuggets:

What’s Your Philosophy to Loving the life you love?

You’re supposed to be living a life you love. Living the life you love will take you to the growth that you were meant to experience and for you to live on purpose and do all the things that you’re here to do.

What is Manifestation?

We are powerful beings creating our reality via our thoughts.  Look around your life and you’ll realize that your reality is a reflection of how you normally think, based on thoughts and beliefs. In a nutshell, manifestation is bringing what you desire into life by aligning your thoughts, beliefs and actions. 

We’ve come here with everything that we need on this journey!  We all have the power within us to do this.

What’s up with the parking example?

I’ve read about the parking lot example so many times…..but it’s so hard because I get so anxious.  Janice helps me see what fears have been blocking me.

For success, you first need to feel as if it’s [the parking space] is already here. Then detach from the idea that you have to have it. Janice personally comes up with a criteria for her parking space – thinking about it that and trusting that everything is in perfect timing for what’s happening. 

Most people fall down with manifesting  when they don’t receive in their order in the time frame that they expected. You basically give up when you stop believing it or when you come up with a contingency plan or try to just make it yourself. And yet it’s at this point, right before giving up, that what you want is just within reach.

People give up right before they’re about to get it

Trust in divine timing

So is creating a contingency plan bad?

No it’s not bad but you need to know how to create  contingency plan that doesn’t conflict with your desires.  Ex. The feeling of it – feel and see what I want to feel and see

The universe will give you this or something better

Disclaimer to Law of Attraction:

Let’s say we’re trying to manifest abundance. Should you really spend the money before you have it? Neither yes or no. Its all about energetic vibe.  If you can truly believe, without stress or fear, that you will certainly receive the abundance you ask for then that makes sense. Thing is, most people will feel fear or anxiety when they make a purchase without having the money first.

What energy am I in when I make this purchase?

It’s similar to how it’s easier to find a job when you have one – because you’re not desperate and not focusing on what you don’t have.

Magic Ingredients to Manifestation



Janice builds trust and faith by taking the steps and leaps.  You can take little leaps and little steps to begin with.  Janice gives example of her free cup of coffee. Getting small wins to build your faith in process and yourself



It doesn’t happen with just your thought.  You need to take action!  If an opportunity drops in front of you, take action on it.

Sometimes it’s not totally clear but clarity comes with each step.  You don’t know exactly what opportunity inspired actions will open you up to.

Ask yourself: how can this be easy?

As we change our beliefs and perceptions, we change the filter that we see things through.  Everything that we want it’s already here. You can’t have a desire w/o it being here.


What thoughts, actions, needs do you have when you have that thing you want?

 Every single day, we need to tap into that


One of the fastest and most amazing ways to manifest  

Elevates your frequency

Just b/c the radio isn’t on doesn’t mean that the frequencies are going through the room, you’ve just turned the source off

Give thanks for what you already have: Thank you for [insert desire here as if you already have it]

Common reason for why it’s not working

Limiting beliefs!! You need to identify then shift

Universal Laws

Universal laws are laws that govern the universe.  Just like the law of gravity, if you believe in it or not it works.  And it will work for everybody – no exceptions.  There are a lot of these laws (over 100+) but there are a few that you’ll want to know in particular.  Janice has a list of universal laws that she’s narrowed down to be most important (scroll down for this free list in “resources” section)

What’s helpful is that when you know and understand them then you can use them to your advantage.

Sometimes you manifest what you don’t want b/c you don’t’ understand these laws.


One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

That we have everything we need inside of us and we just need to learn to access it and trust ourselves.  It’s important to access our inner guidance. Everybody is born to be successful, your success is inevitable!

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

Notice and be aware of what you are thinking at all times.  It's those thoughts that are creating your reality.  Are your thoughts in alignment with what you want, or are you worrying about what you don't want?

For more Monki goodness, follow me @curiousmonki on Instagram or Facebook.


E-book about manifesting


If you have any questions for Janice or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website: www.janiceberkenheger.com  

Email:   info@janiceberkenheger.com

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Episode 74: What Does Enlightenment Feel Like? with Christiane Michelberger

Mindful practices like meditation and yoga help alleviate suffering and brings a sense of inner peace.  Ultimately these practices can lead us to awakening, where we realize our infinite selves.  This state is obviously desirable but have you ever wondered what enlightenment really feels like?  Do you get inducted to this higher state with a big golden light and a choir of angels like in the movies? What does it mean when somebody has "awakened"? Also, how do you function in everyday society when you realize that everything is just an illusion?? 

In this episode, Christiane Michelberger patiently answers these questions for us. This was an ultra mind blowing conversation! there were so many times where I was left speechless as I tried to wrap my head around new ideas. I found my self say “whaaaaaat…” and “huh” a lot. Clearly I’m not enlightened yet! But I do have a clear understanding of what it means to be in that state - in Christiane’s words “constant stillness, peace and a subtle hum of love-joy”. The key to getting there is also very simple. We just need to open our eyes and realize that realize that there is no separate self. We are all one, interconnected, boundless being whose natural state is love and bliss. As Christiane described it, it’s like a fish looking for water that finally realizes it’s in the ocean.

As with many teachings of wisdom, the simplest ones are the most profound. Also the most complex to execute (like how in the teachings of the Tao they say that the Tao that can be named is not the Tao. Seriously, whaaaaat? Then how do you know it’s the Tao?! If you know, you know).

A little more about Christiane and why she’s the person we want to be hearing from….

Christiane has been on the path of awakening for 40 years. As a young physician, she realized her own morality when a motorcyclist was rushed into the ER. Unfortunately the injuries were fatal and the patient couldn’t be saved. It was a poignant moment as Christiane realized that patient was just as young as her. This spurred the question: Who am I? From there, Christiane dedicated her life to looking deeper in the nature of things. She studied with Zen Masters, Indian Gurus and Buddhist teachers. Today, she guides others toward their own awakening. We also get to hear Christiane’s full story including how she faced her own morality again when she was diagnosed with cancer just a few years ago.

Key Nuggets:

  • For Christiane, she uses a feeling of “sweet love” as her inner compass to guide her

  •  The 10 Fetters was created by the Buddha. 

    • The fetters are what binds us to suffering. They are all the layers of assumptions that cover what we experience.

    • Working through the fetters brings you toward enlightenment. It’s meant to shift you.

    • It’s all very simple, you just need to ask yourself: are you experiencing this or thinking it?  Is there wanting or not wanting?

1. Illusion of the self:  The sense of “I” vs “you”

2. Doubt about the teachings

 3. Belief in rites & rituals

4. Pushing and pulling experiences to feel better (wanting more pleasure and less pain). There is no wanting or not wanting.  When you live in full equanimity, then you experience true contentment

5. To be against others. Results in reactions (ex. Road rage, getting upset at children).

6. Attachment to material things

7. Attachment to the immaterial

8.  Comparing

9. Distracted, restless mind

10. Not knowing. Ignorance.


  • When you awaken, you see things for what they are.  It’s like you were a fish in the ocean looking for water.  

  • When awakened, we truly realize that there is no separate self.  There is no “I”. And then you experience this constant stillness, peace and a subtle hum of love-joy.  It’s not totally nothingness.  It’s very full. Experience without words.

  • We need to move between absolute and relative. In other words, you can’t live in a state of enlightenment all the time. It’s more like flowing in and out of it so that you can also function in normal human society.

  •  “purpose” and “meaning” is something that we grasp b/c we have not awakened

  •  The truth is really quite simple: There are no boundaries between you and everything else.  Is everything then perceived or not?  There is no “self”, there is nothing…well, not nothing. There’s love and peace and bliss.

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

Always follow your gut feeling about whether something is right for you or not. When you find yourself reasoning why this is the right thing to do - it's not right.    Somehow we will always meet the experiences that are required at that point.  Once you’re ready, the lessons will come.

 What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

Do not believe anything anybody says, not even the Buddha, Jesus, Nisargadatta or whoever. Never take something as being true if you have not found it to be true in your own first-hand experience. Be an explorer, not a believer. Only by exploring and walking the path yourself, transformation happens. 


If you have any questions for Christiane  or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  www.findingawakening.com

Facebook: @findingawakening

Episode 73 Bite Sized: What Does It Really Mean to Live Your TRUTH?

The whole point of this podcast is to explore the meaning of our experiences in this journey and understand what our truth is and how to live in it.  Fully. Vulnerably. Unapologetically.

But over the last few weeks I found myself contemplating what “living our truth” really means.  It certainly sounds enticing, like as if it would lead us to something good – perhaps liberation.  Maybe happiness.  Still, I wondered how do we find our truths?  How do we know if when we’re living it?  And how do we stay connected to our truest self?

In this episode, I explore all these questions, starting with understanding truth from both a philosophical and applicable level.  I also identify three characteristics that develop when we are living our truth and give you two questions that can help you build momentum in this journey.

The disclaimer here is that while this is a start, it’s not the full answer.  These are big existential questions and this episode is only 20 minutes long! Plus I can’t say that I know what the whole answer is. There are as many layers to this as there are human beings that have ever inhabited this planet.  Like the rest of this journey, this is an exploration.  With each episode, a new story is shared and a little nugget is gathered to help deepen our understanding.  I’m really excited that we’re on this journey together!    

Episode 72: You Can Be Your True Self Even If You Keep Your Day Job with Sarah Marlowe Spence

It was so cool to meet Sarah Marlowe Spence! By day she’s an IT contractor and by night she lives a dynamic spiritual life. Actually, it’s really not that cut and dry - the picture’s just more vivid when I say it that way. In truth, she is both these things (and more) at all times during the day. Balancing our identities is one thing that we discuss in this episode - How can you keep your sense of truth without leaving the office?

Oftentimes, we have this fantasy of sticking it to the man and then galloping off into a shiny life where you won’t be held back from who you really are and you can just BE YOURSELF!! (* cue sunset and the angelic voice of the choir *) While ditching

 your day job might be the right choice for some, it’s not the right move for everybody. For example, if you enjoy your job, you shouldn’t feel like you’re missing out if you don’t cavort out of the office with wild abandon. That’s what Sarah’s story shows - she loves her job as an IT professional….and she also loves her studies in yoga. shamanism, and esoteric studies (which we also talk about in this episode). She spends her time at the office and at the ashram. She’s the perfect person to talk to about how to keep your true sense of self without having to quit your day job!

Key Nuggets:

  • As your yoga practice deepens, you’ll realize that Yoga is life and its teachings extend much beyond the physical poses.

  • It’s important to live your truth but also be aware that your truth can change.

  • Sarah’s advice on how to be fearless:

    • First Light Flower Essence

    • Use your yoga to create fearlessness by embodying what the pose represents:

      • Ex. Use Warrior pose and embody the warrior and find strength

      • Ex. Use Archer pose and imagine yourself pulling back with strength and then letting go

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

Enjoy the moment as much as possible because life is a journey, not a destination.

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

Dig deep. Find the courage and be fearless. Be inspired to hold the determination that you have and that you can find to keep going.


If you have any questions for Sarah   or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  www.sarahmarlowespence.com 


Facebook & Instagram: Sarah Marlowe Spence

Episode 71: Wisdom of 2018 - Year In Review

I’m so excited to share with you the year end episode for 2018! This is my favorite kind of episode because it reminds me of how beautiful we all are. I well up with deep gratitude every single time. In 2018 over thirty beautiful hearts shone their light into our community.  They graciously shared their knowledge and stories. The sharing is a rich beacon of light that helps us make sense of our own experiences and comforts us, letting us know that we’re never alone on this journey.

2018 turned out to be a big year in many ways for a lot of people. For some, it was mighty challenging. For others there was intense growth. And yet for others, we’re just walking out of the haze, still trying to figure out what hit us.

 As I reflected on the episodes of 2018, I can see that the conversations intuitively fit into how the year turned out to be. We seemed to circle around 4 main themes:

  • Understanding our truth, being our truths and trusting ourselves

  • How to move through challenges

  • The way that life unfolds and how acceptance brings you peace

  • And finally, at the heart of it all…. SELF LOVE. I don’t think I had one conversation where these words didn’t show up. It made sense as I thought about it. As many of my wise guests point out, “how can you show compassion to anyone/anything if you can’t even point it toward yourself”? I have a feeling that this topic will show up even more powerfully in this new year.

But first, give 2018 a big-hearted goodbye and wrap yourself in the wisdom collected from our amazing fellow humans.

~ Namaste

Episode 70 Bite Sized: CELEBRATE for Success

Happy New Year! I'm kicking the New Year off with a Bite Sized episode. Today, I share with you one of the biggest lessons that I learned in 2018. This is a critical key to helping you achieve what you desire in 2019. It's super fun to do and totally raises your energy, but you might not be used to doing it in the context that I'm talking about it in....it's CELEBRATING!

In specific, celebrating all that you accomplish. Celebrating your accomplishments,

no matter how big or how small, helps you keep up the momentum. It's a feedback loop that just keeps giving but only if you take the time to truly acknowledge what you've done. That's where many of us trip into the pitfall. Most of us are accustomed to looking at where we missed the mark and all that needs to be done.
"Yea but I should've added this"

"Yea but that's just one little thing. There's so much more that needs to be done until we get there"


It’s not about bragging or being arrogant. It’s about looking at what you’ve done and truly recognizing yourself for how crazy amazing you are for accomplishing it! When you do this with a full sense of deserving and worthiness (a whole can of worms that I address in the podcast), magic happens. You get handed more reasons to celebrate. Just like gratefulness - the more you feel grateful, the more you have to be grateful for. Same forces at work here. In today’s episode, I share with you all that I’ve learned: why celebrating is so important, the key that makes celebrating so powerful in helping you achieve your desires and how to celebrate.  Okay, plug in those earbuds Let's set the vibes for this new year and set you up to receive all that you desire in 2019!

Oh also, if you want to see this practice in action then come join me for a special 2 hour NEW YEARS DESIRE MAP WORKSHOP. It’s happening on JANUARY 8th 6pm-8pm MST. There’s still time to register!

Click here to get your ticket now


Episode 69: This Will Change The Way You Manage Stress with Ky Russell

I love it when mindfulness meets science! I this episode, Ky Autumn Russell, a teacher of stress management and health at the San Jose State University, joins us for a fascinating conversation about holistic stress management. She’s all about embodied movement and is also a pilates & yoga instructor so I thought we were going to talk about the various stress reduction techniques. Instead, Ky shares knowledge about stress management that will change the way you manage stress. For one, “stress management” isn’t about eliminate all stress from your life. In fact, some stress is good. Another big revelation I got from this conversation is how we can utilize knowledge of the stress cycle (the innate response that’s wired within us and runs on autopilot) to help with stress management. Ky gives us a pretty awesome scientific breakdown of the cycle (appealing to my nerdy side)

but in short, we go through different phases in the stress cycle. If we’re able to identify which part we are in then we can reach into our toolbelt of stress reduction techniques (ex. meditation, yoga, breathing, exercise…) and choose the one that will be the most effective for that particular part of the cycle. OK one more tidbit to share - the problem isn’t that we’re stressed, the REAL problem is that we’re chronically stressed. It’s very normal for our bodies to endure stressful events (ex. a friend pops up from behind a bush to scare us). But the problem arises when we’re not given a chance to recover from it (return to homeostasis). It’s like friends keep popping out of the bush to scare you before you can even catch your breath. There’s always something. Unfortunately that’s the way that most of us live today and the chronic stress is what’s taking a toll on us. This is also where Ky’s work on mindful embodied movement comes in. I feel like I can write out the whole episode in this post but I’ll hold back and let you enjoy the episode! This topic is perfect timing as we’re just days away from the major hustle and bustle of the holidays. Plug in those earbuds and prepare to change the way that you deal with your stress!


Ky has created a gift for you! Go to www.kyautumn.com/curious for a myofascial release video to help you release muscle tension.

Key Nuggets:

  • Yoga was the only movement that allowed Ky to access deeper emotions when she was going through a tough time. That’s when she knew that there was something to embodied movement.

  • Plateaus in fitness are connected to the chronic stress that we experienced.

  • Key info that we need to know about stress:

    • Many people assume stress reduction means that we will eliminate stress from our lives but that’s not that case.  What we are trying to become aware of is our own stress reaction

    • Our brains don’t know the difference between the real events that trigger the flight or flight response versus events that come from thought that trigger the flight or fight response

    • A successful approach to stress management can be mindful stress management

      • Rather relying on one or two techniques, have a whole toolbelt ready

      • Learn about stress reaction and then identify it in ourselves so that when we’re in those moments we can apply the technique that’s best suited

      • Different techniques are better depending on which stage you’re in, in the stress response cycle

  • Hold an intention to understand the reaction that’s occurring in our body under stress.  No label of good or bad

  • The brain gets caught in emotion especially when you try to avoid emotions

  • Intrinsic characteristics of stress management: physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual

    • These 4 components feed into each other

  • The Stress Response Cycle:

    •  “Stressor” = any stimulus (good or bad) that elicits the stress response.  Can include getting married, becoming a parent, new job that you’re excited to have…Usually any kind of change is a stressor.

    • Ky give a much better explanation in the podcast but the summary of it is:

      • A stressor occurs, causing the body to process if the stressor is a threat (happens in a split second)

      • Flight or fight response initiates

      • If everything is okay body resets.

      • If not, hormones are released.

      • if the “threat” continues, a higher dosage of hormones like cortisol is released.

  • The body thrives on peaking in stress and then rebounds into homeostasis

    • The problem with our world today is that we’re shaped to not be able to return to homeostasis

    •  You have less ability to return to homeostasis if you are not fully processed in one event

  • What do we do with all this information? Ky’s recommendation for an approach to stress management:

    • Utilize self awareness and practice. Visualize a stressful event to explore (choose one that will keep you safe while you explore)

      • Notice physical sensations as the stress response arises. What do you feel – sweaty hands? Warm face?

      • Once you what’s going on physically, then you can approach with a curious mind and catch onto what’s happening. ie “wait a min, I know what’s happening…I’m in a stress response”

    • Use Gratitude to help with the feel good hormones to release

    • Work on perception:

      • People with resilience look at situations as challenge rather than stress or a threat which helps greatly in helping you mitigate the stress response

    • Relaxation breathing like Nadi shodhana

    • Pre planning can also help mitigate ex. Time management and budgeting – intervention strategy

  • A hatha yoga class actually brings you through the cycle: Sympathetic at peak of flow and then parasympathetic to aid in recovery time in savanasana

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

Focusing on the lessons is the most important things.

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

Enjoy the journey and we’ll all get to the finish line eventually.  What counts is how we got there.


If you have any questions for Ky or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  www.kyautumn.com

FREEBIE: Myofascial release to relieve muscle tension  www.kyautumn.com/curious

Ky’s new podcast, The Grateful Body is out! It’s about wellness, stress, yoga, pilates and social justice and health equity


Episode 68: Stop Feeling Disconnected and Learn How to Feel Connected In Life with Danny Levin

“At the end of the day, we all want to be loved, heard and acknowledged”

Our world is more digitally connected than ever but it’s almost scary how easy it is for us to feel disconnected - to ourselves, to other people....to life.  The feeling of disconnection isn't a foreign feeling these days and many have felt it at one point or another.  So we’re connected (digitally) and also disconnected (emotionally) at the same time?  If that’s the case, then the real question is What is connection?  In this episode, I have an intense conversation about connection with Danny Levin - mentor, speaker and author of the book The Mosaic.  What does it take to feel connected?  How do we feel connected? And further yet, Why do some of us feel so disconnected?  He teaches us about the 4 Practices of Connection and how to use them to start feeling connected to life.

Danny has a well-established list of experience but he’ll humbly tell you that all of that doesn’t really matter.  He has lived as a monk for 10 years, run a restaurant, owned a clothing company, and was the Director of Business Development at the Hay House for over a decade amongst many other experiences.  But again, it doesn’t matter.  “it doesn’t matter who you were or who you will be.  What truly matters is who are you now?” he lovingly teaches.  For Danny, his purpose right now is to spread the word out about true connection!

At one point, I asked him what inspired him to write a whole book, The Mosaic, to teach people about connection and he laughed.  “I didn’t know anything about the connection.  I would’ve thought that I’d be the last person to teach about connection” he said.  Although, we really end up teaching what we need to learn don’t we?  That’s been Danny’s journey – he lost both of his parents as a small child and when told that his parents had gone to “heaven”, Danny endeavored to find out where “heaven” was.  He was in search of connection to God/Universe/Cosmic Force (whatever you want to call it) and in turn also learned about the full breadth of connection including ourselves and other people.  His book The Mosaic is about a little boy who tries to find “heaven”.  It’s loosely based on his own personal story and what he’s learned throughout his journey, so in a way you can say that this book is his life’s work.

Okay, enough of my babbling!  Plug in those earbuds and prepare to soak in the wisdom!

Key Nuggets:

  • At the end of the day we all want to be loved, accepted, heard, appreciated and acknowledged.

  • There are 3 things that absolutely everything in this world, animate and inanimate things needs to go through (I got put on the spot for this one haha): a beginning, middle and end.

    • The middle can sometimes it takes forever long and Danny admits that this used to be his least favorite part of a journey. If you know where the end is, then what’s taking so long to get there! He’s since discovered the abundance of the middle. The middle is actually “now”.  As yogis, mindfulness practitioners and spiritual masters will tell you, what’s truly of importance is the “now”. It doesn’t matter what we were or who we’re going to be.

    • Danny’s discovered that the middle place is where he’s longed to be in his whole life

  • There are 4 stages of connection:

    1. 1. Connection to self

    • Be just as kind to yourself than you would others.  Why would you be harsher on yourself than somebody else.  Danny gives perfect example of falling down.  If a friend fell down, you’d help them up, stay with them and make sure it’s okay.  If you fell down, the self talk might sound like “you’re so clumsy, why would you do that! Get it together argh!”

    • Kindness begins first with you being kind to yourself

    • We talked about the analogy of putting a wall up to protect ourselves and in turn not actually showing up fully. You’re not the walls that you built around yourself but sometimes we forget that.  We end up becoming walls meeting other walls which is why we feel so disconnected.

    • When we are kind to ourselves, we dissolve the wall.  That’s why it’s so important. There’s no point in dissolving wall between you and others (kindness to others) if you keep building up your own walls because there will still be a disonnection

  • 2. Be vulnerable and open

    • Vulnerability allows us to open up to each other

    • When we know that the world is in complete support of us doing what we are meant to do, we open up.

    • We were never meant to do this alone.  We were meant to do it in collaboration with everything around us

  • 3. Purposeful

    • Qualify what we want to receive and who we want to give to

  • 4. Build connection (the mosaic)

    • We find commonality with each other and come together

    • The mosaic: when groups of intentionally kind, purposeful people come together and further the creation of a world that we want to pass onto our children

    • peace by piece” – we can find commonality with each other, even if just a sliver

  • Danny shares a beautiful story of an unforgettable lesson that his developmentally delayed daughter taught him.  When she talked to him and he didn’t hear, she would scream. If he still didn’t listen a tantrum ensued. If she still didn’t feel heard at that point, then she’d destroy something.

    • Huh, that’s very much like us isn’t it? It’s the perfect analogy for when we don’t feel heard. When someone doesn’t feel heard they yell, then they make a scene then finally as a final attempt, they destroy something (a relationship, a career…)

  • All that can be alleviated by acknowledging each other’s beliefs.  It doesn’t mean that we need to agree, but most times it’s enough to just be listened to.

  •  When people are heard, it becomes love. Just like when Danny finally heard her daughter, the rage became laughter.

  • Danny is on a mission to get us from being mindful to “heartful”

    • To be heartful means to be able to allow us to feel each other and stand with each other through our pain. To reach out to somebody to say “I was never meant to do this alone, can you please help me”

  • Our practice is made up of moments and moments make up with momentum.

    • What does one moment of kindness go?

  • Collect enough moments to create momentum so that it’s there to propel you even if you find yourself a little lost sometimes.      

Biggest Lesson:

The biggest lesson that Danny wants to share with you through his book is to BE KIND TO YOURSELF.  Start there and everything will change.


If you have any questions for Danny or want to learn more, connect with him through:

Website: www.TheMosaicOnline.com

Episode 67: 3 “Weird” Practices in Kundalini Yoga Explained with Sat Shakti Kaur

Kundalini Yoga is a powerful practice that can change your energetic vibration in as little as 3 minutes. The only catch is that it looks pretty eccentric to someone who’s not familiar - a group of people with everyone dressed in white, topped with a turban and chanting their hearts out. Yup, it can be rather intimidating to join a group like this when you have no idea what you’re doing. This is probably the reason why so many people haven’t tried Kundalini before. I myself ended up trying it by mistake - I was at the Bali Festival and it was named something else so I walked into it unassumingly. And you know what, it was one of the most incredible movements of energy within myself that I’ve every experienced with yoga! The feeling was so cooool.

In this episode, Sat Shakti Kaur (also known as Jessica Banks), owner of the Kundalini studio Joy Yoga in London shares her time with us to teach us about Kundalini. She explains the “weird” practices that we see sometimes like the white clothes, white turbans and why sometimes people walk out with a different name. She teaches us how these tools can help get us deeper into the practice. “I used to think some of the practices were weird to when I started” Jessica relates. For her, the discovery of Kundalini yoga was through classes that were offered at a gym. She soon

realized all the benefits that this practice had to offer. Integrating Kundalini into her life has enabled her to overcome depression, increase creativity and productivity and enjoy a sense of contentment in life. 

Key Nuggets:

  • Yogi Bahjan: Travelled from India to North America in 1969 to introduce Kundalini to North America

    • Before that, Kundalini was a secretive practice only passed down by word of mouth

  • Kundalini is known as the yoga of awareness and also referred to as the mother of yoga because it encompasses all 22 forms of traditional yoga including postures, breath work, and meditation. It can be done or with or without mantras

  • “Kundalini” refers to the energy in ourselves (ie. Chi, prana…)

  • Some benefits of Kundalini are:

    • It refines your interactions with other people and helps you let go and become more aware

    • You become more in tune with the world around you and your own intuition            

  • There are many practices in Kundalini that could seem intimidating but it’s most helpful to see them as tools. None of these are requirements and you can adopt what works for you:

    • Wearing all white: white is a color of purity, divinity and it reflects.  Helps you go deeper into meditation. Expands projection (teachers are expected to wear white so that they can project)

      • Darker colors like black on the other hand absorb and can absorb negativity

    • Turban: the idea of having a head covering is to contain energy and higher vibration. When you wrap your head in something like a turban it affects the blood flow to the brain and helps you think and meditate better.

      • These are differences that you may not notice right away but as you continue this Yoga of Awareness, you will begin to notice the subtle difference.

      • There are other types of Kundalini hats that you can wear besides a turban (there’s a whole online market for it). The ideas is to cover the whole crown of your head including the hairline.  All affects electromagnetic field.

    • Names: being given a name is not unique to Kundalini yoga but how you get it is.  Somebody meditates based on your numerology and it blesses your destiny.

  • In Kundalini yoga, the energy reside from the base of your spine and is the energy of creation (babies, projects, art….) .  To use it in a a higher consciousness, then you must move the energy up

    • The recipes are used exactly as Yogi Bhajan has taught them.  Nothing is added or subtracted

    • You can work up to the higher chakras in one practice

    • It includes a physical practice then meditation and chanting

    • Kundalni kriyas (movements) helps the energy rise but also balances the chakras

    • “kriya” = completed act

    • There are thousands of kriyas

    • The kriyas movements aren’t held. It’s continual movement incorporated with breath. It’s all about the movement of energy

    • There are kriyas where you shake and it helps release trauma/fear and your responses to them

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

Just keep going. No matter what, keep the forward momentum moving.  Sometimes progress may be frustratingly slow, it may even appear to be going backwards.  You learn through mistakes. There may be setbacks beyond your control. Working through these blocks can be part of what makes the end product all the more great.

Jessica learned this lesson as she tried to build her studio.  It took her 2 years to find a space but she thought it’d only take a couple of months.  She started teaching anyway and hosted teachers who were visiting.

It was Jessica’s practice that helped keep her going to.  It kept her centered, confident in herself and detached from outcome. At one point, she realized that she was already doing everything she wanted to do without having to have a space.

We have a preconception of how we want things to be but it doesn’t’ mean that that’s what it needs to be

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

Don’t judge where you are. We all have good days and bad days, different strengths and weaknesses.  You get out of it what you put in. If the practices come easy to you but you don’t put much effort or focus into it, you won’t get very far. Conversely, if it’s a challenge for you to sit still or to focus but you respect your limitations and keep trying, you’ll start get somewhere.

Make a commitment and just do it. No matter what. In Kundalini Yoga, with our personal practice – the yoga and meditation we do on our own at home every day - we tend to do things for 40, 90, or 120 days. Sometimes 1000 days. When you make that commitment and stick with it, no matter how lousy you may feel or unfocused, you can start to see real changes. You take back control of the mind. (It’s the mind that tells you can’t or shouldn’t do something) And you can start to tap into your highest potential.

If you think you’re starting late on this path, it may be that you weren’t ready for it any earlier.


If you have any questions for Jessica or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  www.joy.yoga

Email:   info@joy.yoga

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KundaliniLondon/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kundalinilondon/

Episode 66: Awaken Your Primal Essence With Art with Clare Galloway

Clare Galloway does her work from a magical arthouse in an Italian medieval quarter that she purchased for a mere 10,000 Euros.  The house sits atop the tiny town of Guardia Sanframondi, Italy and opens up to a breathtaking view. Once abandoned, this space is now where artists, dreamers, and creatives come gather.  Aside from a delightful state of whimsy this story puts you in, I lead with this because the purchase of this space has great significance in illustrating the magic of surrender.  That’s what we talk about in today’s episode – accessing the place of surrender and flow by using art.  As Clare says, we all have a creative engine within ourselves.  When we access this energy, we charge ourselves up and suddenly become filled with bright ideas, solutions and all the beautiful things that want to be expressed.  Art is how we can be reunited with our innate primal sense of truth.

You’ve probably caught on by now that Clare is an artist.  To be specific, she’s a visionary artist and writer whose work is all about healing, expansion, the good life, and the abundance of creative power that every single individual holds.  She has paintings in collections around the world and is just launching a life-long vision of an online art school.

Listen in and get inspired to tap into your creative genius.  Tap into it enough and you’ll learn to surf with the flow of life rather than get dragged around.

Key Nuggets:

  • We all have a creative engine within ourselves.  We’re all creative geniuses but most of us end up getting stifled by culture or habits.  When we harvest the creative energy within ourselves and charge ourselves up then we suddenly have infinite ideas and solutions to problems and beautiful things that want to be expressed.

  • Art is this primal way that can help us find that center (our inner free bird)

  • We have an ability to work energetically in the world in an expansive way.

    • But first we need to be aware that there are things take energy away from us and that we have the ability to charge up. There are issues when we’re not charging our energy enough. We end up reacting rather than flowing.

    • When we’re charged up, we flow. We’re full of great conversation and ideas….we’re full of life. We leave every situation a little better off than before we arrived - a bright contribution to a conversation, a glimmer of insight….we keep the energy charged up wherever we go.

  • Surfing on life vs. being dragged around by life

  • We’re trained to think that we’re “not creative” or that we can’t make art. It’s important to note that our creative energy comes through in so many forms!

    • Painting, gardening, sewing, community, creating community, cooking, taking care of children, dancing…..seriously can be anything!

    • When we fully inhabit our creativity, seriously anything that we do can be an act of creativity. It transforms into joy for the world.  You flow and radiate.  It’s anytime that we’re “in the zone” and totally in flow – time falls away. Your yoga practice counts too ;)

  • Creative power brings us back our essence – a primal sense of truth, connectedness

  • When creating, make sure you can discern between doing the art versus thinking about the art

    • When you are “doing” you are in the zone of flow.

    • When you’re thinking about it, you stay in that monkey mind constantly judging if it’s “good” or “not”. You forget to feel it.

    • Allow it to come the way that it comes. Express what wants to flow and allow whatever form or color to take shape as it will. Allow everything to come up. Go against the chitter chatter of “I can ‘t do this”.  Ties into inner child work a bit

  • With all this said, it leads us up to the big reveal….* drumroll *…….this turns out to be yet another practice of self love!!

    • Yes, allow our desired expressions to arise without judgement.

    • Loving whatever comes up in all its forms and colors

    • And then stopping to inquire within yourself if there’s something you really don’t want to form in your art. “What is this not wanting?” “What is it trying to show me?”

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

 There's always treasured to be gleaned from every experience in our life.

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

“There has to be a void in order for something new and better to fill: the times when we feel most empty or 'without' can often come just before a great new phase of our lives - and once we get the hang of this, we can practice leaning into that space, and trusting it - which better allows the change to unfold”                                                                           


If you have any questions for Clare or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  clareartista.com (her page)

www.thesora.org (online art school)

Episode 65 Bite Sized: EXCITING NEWS. How Do You Want To Feel?

I’m so excited to be back with a new Bite Sized episode! It’s been a while hasn’t it? Well in this episode I explain to you why I’ve been MIA with these solo episodes for the past few weeks and why I’m particularly excited to be back. In a nutshell, I’ve found an answer to figure out one of life’s most pressing questions: What do you want most out of your life?

I’m seriously SO excited to share it with you!! This podcast is all about

navigating our own personal journeys together and moving toward a meaningful heart-led life. To inch closer toward our heart callings/soul callings/true nature (whichever resonates the most). In essence, stand confidently in our truths and show up to the world as the light that we are. Now I’ve got a way for us to elevate together! Plug in those buds, you don’t want to miss this one. Tip: listen to the very end for a goodie.

If you’re ready to find clarity for yourself, CLICK HERE.

Episode 64: How to Find Healing For Your Innermost Self with Ivy Kwong

Ivy Kwong is a Licensed Psychotherapist who really flows between three roles: One, as a guide to walk alongside you as you navigate your journey, helping you to see and consider new directions and previously undiscovered paths. Two, she is an advocate of your growth and healing by assisting with tools and insight as needed and inspired, and Three, she operates as a mirror to reflect your strength, resilience, and gifts, and to gently raise awareness of your blind spot s from a foundation of compassion and care. Her approach is warm, collaborative, intuitive, and holistic and she believes you are the expectation of your own healing.

I noticed Ivy because I was doing research on Vipassana meditation retreats and came across her very witty and informative article (link below if you want to read). How can you not like somebody who makes you laugh out loud? I also liked the fact that she’s a psychotherapist who did a meditation retreat. I love it when the two worlds of science and spirituality come together. It creates a holistic perspective of our true essence.

I originally invited Ivy onto the show to share her experience of the Vipassana retreat but it organically took a different direction and we ended up talking about - in short - life.….this journey….healing. Ivy’s personal story highlights the richness of life and the dynamic facets of these journeys. No journey is the same and they are not meant to be judged as “better” or “worse”. They’re just different, each one precious. Our journeys are our own yet there are many points in which we can connect and relate to each other. It’s like we’re an Earth sized venn diagram, each person’s journey is a circle and various pieces of our experiences overlap with others’. Each story interwoven one way or another, held together with the common thread of our truths (which I think might be love?). Our journeys are of finding our way back to this common thread, but there can be quite a bit of muck to get through. We’re lucky though, because our stories are interwoven which means that the lessons that we learn on our own can be shared. And through the sharing of lessons we help each other get a little closer to that common thread. I guess that’s my long form way of telling you what this episode is about. I tried to be succinct about it but what Ivy shares with us provides such deep value that it wouldn’t be a clear reflection if I just said that it was about how to develop self-worth and heal the innermost parts of ourselves through our inner child. Trust me on this one, you want to listen to this. You’ll come out with your heart full and with more compassion for yourself.

Key Nuggets:

  • Things that we all desire: to be seen, heard, protected, and safe.

  • There are pivotal moments in our lives where we need to decide if we’re going to self destruct or persevere.

  • Ivy’s transformation began when she came to a point in her life where she realized that if she kept living as destructively as she was, her life was either going to be shortened or it wouldn’t be a life worth living. She had to decide to make a change.

  • “The people who have gone through the darkest times are the ones who are capable of generating the brightest lights”

  • Ivy’s advice on trauma comparison: there’s no such thing as anybody else’s trauma being “better” or “worse” than the other. Your experience is your own and that needs to be honored.

  • We get messages all day about conditional worth from what your social status is to how many likes you got on your Instagram post. The real truth is that you are worthy and you deserve self-love. You need to find a way to realize that.

  • We’re doing the work to heal so many generations of our parents’ wounds

  • Our most difficult relationships are the ones that teaches us the most

  • To create a life that was worth living, Ivy had to:

    • Admit that the work she was doing (being a lawyer) was done out of expectation and was not her calling.  She had to start looking for what her deepest calling was.

    • She worked with her inner child through post induction therapy, which she now offers to her clients. She visited her six year old self to provide the healing that was required there. This work is important because your inner child is visceral and knows your deepest truth.

  • Magic and serendipity happens when you start committing to yourself, to your inner child, presence, to be able to be with yourself.

  • Your inner child is with you throughout your entire life.  All itierations of you are all part of you.  They’ve always have been and will be.  Learn to reconnect with and listen to all these diff parts of yourself

  • Aside from induction therapy, you can connect with your inner child by:

    • Finding a pic of yourself from when you were young (4,5,6,7 years old) and sitting with it.

    • Internally or vocally and tell yourself “I love you. You’re important. You matter and you’re precious to me.  What you have to say, think, feel, I want to hear you “

    • Ask her/him “what do you need right now”

    • Sit with this for 15 min

  • Wherever we are at your journey, realize that you are already doing your best with what you have. Have compassion toward yourself for that.

  • In order to believe you’re worthy of self love, you need to treat yourself with self love.

  • How to believe your worthiness: treat yourself like your’re worthy

    • You teach how people to treat you with your boundaries.  If you don’t reinforce your boundaries, then you teach yourself that you’re not worthy. You’re telling yourself that other people are more important and then your self worth issues continue to brew.

    • Learn to say no and tell yourself/inner child/universe that you’re worthy of care and protection and being honored.

  • “in order to become you have to be”    

  • The richness of life can be accessed when you go to a place where you can surrender (ex. nature…)

  • Depression comes from fixation of past, anxiety comes from fixation of future

  • We choose our stories.  We choose our stories, we choose to empower or dis-empower ourselves. Things that happen can be the worst things, condemning our life to suffering or they can break us open.

  • Tips/tools to plug into love, truth and connection:

    • Allow yourself to be fully human and feel everything. Happiness has just as much importance and beauty as sadness, fear, joy.  All of these entities are part of you and instead of pushing them away or denying them, listen to them.  Ex. Anger tells you that a boundary has been violated. Let yourself feel what you feel. They’ve got messages.

    • It’s okay to not know things. Are you thinking your feelings or feeling your feelings?  Feel without having to understand, explain or justify it. There’s a limiting factor to having to understand and make sense of everything.

    • Play! Just for the sake of curiosity, joy, expression, connection and without a need of any outcome.

Little tidbit about vipassana retreat: for Ivy it was powerful, beautiful and so hard to do! The retreat consisted of 10 days of meditation and no talking.

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

Acceptance is the key to freedom from all suffering.  If you can accept what you’re feeling, thinking, experiencing in the moment (provided that you’re in a safe situation) that can lead to freedom. Accept what is rather than force what isn’t.

“May you have the serenity to accept the things that you cannot change, the courage to change the things you can and the wisdom to know the difference”

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?              

Don’t take yourself so seriously.  Laugh, allow, give yourself grace, compassion and recognize that you’re doing the best that you can with what you have right now.  At any moment you can do something different.


If you have any questions for Ivy or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  BareIvy.com

Email:   TheBareIvy@gmail.com

Facebook:  @BareIvy

Instagram: @BareIvy


The article about vipassana retreat where I first learned about Ivy: A Brutally Honest Review of My 10-Day Silent Meditation Retreat 

The “trapezoid head” article that we were talking about: My Never-Before-Shared Story of Middle School Love and Death

Episode 63: A Heart Led Life - How to Find Peace Over Perfection with Sam Goldsmith

Samantha Goldsmith’s passion is to help women embrace their uniqueness and live a life guided by their inner compass. A self-confessed serial entrepreneur, Sam fulfills her passion with her Essential Oils business and her podcast Namaslay Type A where her and her interviewees give sound advice on how to choose peace over perfection, settle into your unique self, tune into your inner guidance system and stay in your own lane.

Fittingly, that’s exactly what we talk about in today’s episode - how to ditch the need to get everything perfect and just embrace the humanness of ourselves. This means that sometimes we make mistakes, sometimes we

change our minds, sometimes we fail and guess what? It’s OKAY! Sam notices that everyone has a type A tendency toward something in their lives. See what yours is by inquiring where in your life you are resistant to giving control? Where in your life do you feel like you have to take on everything? That you’re the only one who can do it right?

Got it? Good, now listen in and find out what you can do about it so that you can live a peaceful, heart led life instead ;)

Key Nuggets:

  • Definition of “Type A”: Sam sees that everyone has a type A tendency toward some aspect of their life. Here are some identifiers of the profile:

    • Feel like something terrible will happen if you don’t have all the balls in the air

    • Feeling like you have to take on everything

    • Unwilling to ask for help because you feel like you’re the only one who can do it “right”

    • Not trusting that what you have/what you’ve done is enough

  • When we take the risk and yield to our hearts, the universe will hear and it will show up for you. You can’t really get into flow before you take that leap because it’s hard for flow to happen if you are out of alignment

  • What Sam had to learn for a heart led life: Be okay with yourself and embrace your unique gifts

    • Embrace your humanness. For example it’s okay to change your mind. Not allowing yourself this flexibility keeps you so rigid.

  • What Sam had to let go of for her Heart led life: She had to let go of everything and be completely open

    • She had to retrain her nervous system to let go.  What she means by that is that she recognized the fears that were coming up in her body and her mind and then taking conscious action to work through them (She was so fearful of dropping any balls that she started taking everything on).  A strong spiritual practice of being comfortable with being uncomfortable was helpful.

  • Strongest question that helped Sam along the way:  what would I do if I loved myself? This very question helped her take the leap into trying what she always wanted to - leaving her high paying job to do something of her own.

  • How do you live a life based on your heart’s guidance? Prioritize yourself and how you feel

    • When you need to make a decision, there’s always something going on in your body.  Listen to that. And you do already have the answers. Sam often hears these phrases from her clients “I knew…” or “I had a feeling about that…” which shows that somewhere we do have the answers.

  • Sam’s advice for trusting and hearing those body messages:

    • Firstly make a conscious decision to commit to what you want

    • Begin to recognize what your body feels like and then go from there – Sam gives example of high paced business woman who was always constricted, so that client had to recognize that her throat was always constricted to understand what her present norm is. This is where a yoga practice is helpful!

    • Once you get to know what your body normally feels like, then fine tune. Start to notice subtle differences as you enter into certain situations or try to make certain decisions and begin to learn the language of your body.

  • Sam’s advice for letting go:

    • Starts with decision to let go.  This sets your mindset up for success.

  • When you have a stream of emotion or energy stop and stay still , present silent.  The natural instinct is to take action but don’t do anything yet because it’s inspired by the fear.      

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

Stay in your own lane. It’s easy to get distracted to see how other people are doing and how successful they seem – all of this is a distraction from following your own heart. 

If we recognize that we don’t have competitors we begin to see ourselves as contributors and then there will be space to really shine with our gifts.

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

That everything you need is already within you, you have the most sophisticated GPS inside and if you trust it, it will never steer you wrong. Your life is yours, it’s there for living in a way that makes you happy, you will never regret following your heart so let that be your guide.


If you have any questions for Sam or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  www.samanthagoldsmith.com

Instagram: @samanthagoldsmithhq

Facebook: @https://www.facebook.com/thelightcollectiveessentialselfcarerevolution/

Episode 62: Leaving the Inner-Critic and Moving Toward Self Love with Erin DiAngelis

What you want to hide the most is sometimes the greatest gift that you can offer the world.

Erin DiAngelis is a yoga teacher, Holistic Life Coach and Massage therapist who helps students heal from unhealthy relationships with their food or body so that they can live with more joy. She’s been featured all over from the Huffington Post to the Divine Living Magazine and also on Inspired TV. The beautiful message that she has to share with the world today comes from deep personal growth and experience. That’s what we get to hear all about on this episode!

Erin had an eating disorder for many years and thought the she was going to struggle with food for the rest of her life. She didn’t disclose this information openly until one day it dawned on her that this is exactly where she can be helping people the most! “It’s not even about the food itself, actually. It’s the need for control of something” Erin recalls as she tries to explain what it was like in that mindset. A place where many of us can relate - that incessant inner-critic, the desperate striving for more. So while this story is centered around an eating disorder and negative body image, the root of the conversation is about self-love. Erin shares her lessons on how she left the inner-critic and moved into a place where she could recognize her strengths. She also talks about how her yoga practice was really the stepping stone to all of the healing.

  Key Nuggets:

  • In understanding people who have an eating disorder like bulimia or anorexia, it’s important to understand that it’s not actually even about the food itself. It’s about secrecy and the need to control something.

  • Erin remembers the struggle with putting a lot of strictness on herself. Things were black or white. She was doing good or she was failing. Her advice is that if you recognize yourself in this perfectionist tendency , be aware of it in your yoga practice as well.  Be clear on what intention you’re practicing with. 

    • More ways to shift out of the black and white perfectionist mindset:

      • Shift to what feels good

      • Acknowledge yourself for practicing

      • Set intention to soften expectations

  • The lessons of self-love came in many different layers for Erin

    • The meaning of self-love also evolved for Erin the more she learned about it.  It went from thinking it was a nice bubble bath to something much deeper. Now self love is actually liking what she sees in the mirror, no more food restrictions (she just eats whatever feels good in her body) and letting herself enjoy and feel good in her body

    • The first seeds came from her yoga practice when she was first able to recognize her strengths (physically and mentally). For example she that she was able to take poses that she couldn’t even do days prior, which showed not only the strength in her body but also in her mind as she practiced and persevered.

    • Another layer was that her black and white thinking began to fade. Yoga helped quiet mind and gain space in breaking thought patterns.  She eased into the new perspective of “I’m not there yet but that doesn’t mean I’ll never get there”

  • In reflecting on self-love, it ultimately comes from a place of being kind to yourself. to Erin, a thought along the lines of  “I deserve this chocolate/glass of wine/night out because I had a hard day” isn’t quite self-love at its fullest. The intention needs to come from a place of appreciating the qualities of yourself 

  • To start with self-love in terms of body image, begin to recognize the miracle of your body: your hearts pump, eyes blink…all without you needing to think about it. Shift into thinking how right everything is working versus thinking about what’s wrong with it.

  • Erin’s advice for anyone struggling with body image or chronic health is: You CAN feel a sense of peace and ease in your body.  Set the intention and keep the faith.  Everything in your life is working for you to see that your body is given to you as a tool to feel joy and laughter and movement.

One of Your Biggest Lessons So Far:

In Erin’s words:

“I have 1000 lessons I’ve learned, how do I pick one!? :) That’s why I love yoga and this journey so much! The BIGGEST lesson though has been learning how to love myself. It happened in many layers and each of those layers brought a deeper understanding of what it means to love myself, which I am so grateful for”

What is one nugget of wisdom that you would share with fellow seekers who are on this journey of growth and transformation?

In Erin’s words:

“Believe in your own strength, even when it comes to the areas in your life where you’re struggling or stuck. If you keep showing up daily, and hold your intention, that desire will unfold and come to life. Something will shift-I truly believe that. The road may be winding, and it might not happen instantaneously, but the Universe, Life, Your soul- whatever you want to call it, wants your best self to flourish because everyone benefits when that happens.” 


If you have any questions for Erin or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:   Erindiangelis.com

Facebook:  facebook.com/erindiangelis

Instagram: instagram.com/erindiangelis


Episode 61: What Does Your Element Say About You? Face Reading with Caitlin Donovan

I had to have her back! In this episode, Caitlin (acupuncturist, herbalist, Chinese Medicine practitioner) tells us all about Face Reading (something we only had a few minutes to talk about in our first chat on Episode 57: Energy Flows and Chinese Medicine). She teaches us about the 5 Elements of Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water and what each element says about our natural tendencies. Much like the Ayurvedic Constitutions, Myers Briggs, DISC or any other personality test, this system helps us learn more about ourselves. The intriguing thing about this system is that it uses your own facial features to determine the dominant element within you!

Thick bushy eyebrows? That means that you have a lot of wood element in which case means that you’re probably competitive in nature and love movement. Wouldn’t be surprising if you have done or aspire to do an Ironman. Full lips? You might veer toward the Earth element which means that you probably love hosting parties for friends and family, and having comfort is very important to you (forget the skirts that you can’t breathe in, an airy free flowing silk skirt will do). Of course there’s more of a skill to identifying the elements than that and Caitlin takes the time to explain in this episode.

It’s so much fun to identify our elements but what’s more important is learning how to use them. Caitlin explains how to use our dominant elements to live a more aligned and balanced life. An understanding of this system can help bring harmony to your relationships as you learn how you’re meant to relate to others; understand your own natural strengths; and ultimately understand how to use this knowledge so that you can fulfill your life’s purpose “Golden Path”.

SO MANY NUGGETS IN THIS ONE! Plug in those earbuds and get ready!

Key Nuggets:

  • Face reading stems from Chinese culture and was used for fortune telling, match making but also as part of medical diagnosis.

  • With her background in Chinese Medicine,the most important part of face reading for Caitlin is the diagnostic tool.  A lot of Chinese Medicine uses tongues and wrist pulses to determine diagnosis.  When Caitlin does online sessions, the tongue doesn’t show up correctly and of course she can feel people’s wrists so she relies on Face Reading. She also uses it:

    • For self care (ex. if you know that you’re fire then what feeds fire is wood then that means you should go spend time with wood type people, in the forest with trees, have images and surroundings that are wood based like flowers….) to balance out.  Know what your fuel is.

      • If you’re too firey then you need to put it out with water ex. Hop in the bath, find water

    • Help people gain clarity and let go of blame in their relationships (work or personal). Reset expectations.

      • Ex. metal vs earth differences (if metal needs that sock drawer color coded, they may need to do it themselves b/c earth may never get there)

  • With face reading you can even look at wrinkles to determine most commonly felt emotions and when in your life you had your most intense (good or bad) experiences.

  • Short example of how to use your elements to improve relationships:   

    • Metal: needs space, neat, organized (probably has a sock drawer organized by color)

    • Earth: accumulates more, looks for ease, definitely wouldn’t color code a sock drawer.

    • Implications: if you had a metal mother and an earth based child, the mother’s natural tendency would be to set high expectations for order and achievement. This could put a huge amount on an earth child whose natural tendency is to find ease. In knowing this information about themselves perhaps the metal mother can give her earth child more space to find ease.

  • In understanding your element, know that you are what you are and if you can learn to work with them well, you can give yourself and the people around you more space

  • Like any other personality test, Face Reading is another component here to help you better understand yourself and others (partners, loved ones…).  Can help you change the course of what you’re doing if your’re stuck somewhere.  Oftentimes you’re working off a template that doesn’t quite belong to you – easier if you understand what does work for you and align to that.

  • How you use the informatio is the most important thing – understanding how you work with others in relation to yourself.  How are you meant to interact with others?

  • In doing this, we give everyone more space to be themselves in the world

  • Here’s how the 5 ELEMENT SYSTEM goes (used for Chinese medicine and face reading)

    • The idea behind this is that everybody as their own natural strengths. If you learn to tune into them and use them properly and you know yourself and the other elements well enough then everyone can inhabit a space where everyone are allowed to act as themselves.  Ultimately to fulfill your destiny (Golden Path).

    • You’re a little bit of each but it’s a matter of how balanced in each element you are.  Oftentimes we have one or more that’s more intense than the others.

    • The basic rule in determining your facial features is that if somebody did a caricature of you, what features would they exaggerate on you?

    • Compare facial features to everything else on your face (not compared to somebody else or the average person)

    • Your elements actually changes if you get plastic surgery. This system reinforces the fact that  Your features on your face is perfect the way they are

      • WOOD

        • Most important need is to do. 

        • Likes competition

        • Loves movement.

        • Needs a lot of exercise otherwise they’d have hard time to regulate emotions (helps alleviate natural tendency of irritation)

        • Usually turn out to be athletes or ends up doing ironmans.

        • Natural philanthropists but also irritable so need to find balance there. “I want to help you but you’re annoying me”

        • React best when challenged

        • Tall and sinewy or short and stalky. Either way muscular body structure

        • Super thick eyebrows

        • Very square jawline – perfect 90 degree jaw that you can definitely see (not covered or softened by fat)

        • Tend toward irritation and frustration

        • Prone to high blood pressure or headaches

      • FIRE

        • Loves talking, talks fast

        • Move around a lot

        • Loves joking, makes people laugh.

        •  Loves being center of attention. 

        •  Loves playing

        •  Easily meets people..  A lot of times people are drawn in by the eyes.

        • Enjoys fleeting connections but have harder time maintaining deeper relationships.

        • You notice a sparkle in their eyes right away

        •  May look a bit mischievous

        •  Looks like they can make you laugh at any moment.  Quite charismatic

        • Freckles

        •  Big eyes – the bigger the eyes, the more fire

        •  Red hair = automatic fire

        • Natural emotional tendency is anxiety

        • Heavy thinking (not even worried about anything, just a lot of thought)

        • Prone to autoimmune diseases and inflammation

      • EARTH

        • Most important thing is friends and family

        • Loves hosting

        • Love having their people around and close to them

        • Really needs comfort. Smooth and comfortable

        • Family oriented

        • Tends to accumulate things (including weight. Very easy for them to gain weight)

        • Loves ingestion (food, knowledge, learning…)

        • Doesn’t react well to being challenged.  Better when given nourishing support.

        • Strong sign of fire are women who can’t buy knee high boots b/c their calves are too big

        • Big mouth and full lips (like Angelina Jolie…but remember to compare your features to your own face)

      • METAL

        • More than anything, they love order

        • Keep things clean

        • Prefer to not see anything on counters that don’t have to be there

        • They’re home would most likely have white counter tops and stainless steel appliances (so clean)

        • Has an eye for beauty

        • When you’re in their space, you feel spacious

        • Good working in the arts, galleries

        • The bigger the nose, the more the metal

        • If the nose is thin and pointy (aqualine), then even more so.  The most metally of the noses

        • Natural leaders

      • WATER

        • Creative types

        • Philosophers

        • Loves thinking – deep thinkers (ie. Ponders about the origins of life0

        • Loves being – that’s where the sense of life is.

        • Wonderful people to  hangout with b/c their thoughts are so well thought out

        • Tend to prefer to be alone though.  They’re the friend at parties that seems like they might not be having a good time b/c they’re not talking to anybody but they’re happy to just observe

        • Size of ears =more water

        • Bigger forehead = more water

        • Bigger chin = more water

    • You can use this information to help when having conflict with another person.  Help people understand in the context of their elements. Caitlin teaches clients to communicate in a way in which they can be understood.

  • It costs you the least amount of energy to survive when you’re acting within your element.  It’s all about  energy management.


    • Creation Cycle: A circular structure where the element that comes before always enhance the one that comes after

      • If you’re over using an element that doesn’t really belong to you, it’s best to enhance the element before it.  Ex. If you add more Earth then it’ll be easier to be more metal

    • Destructive Cycle: Forms a start between the elements. Utilize if you need to tone down a certain element.

    • Bring in element by adding physical things to environment, foods you eat and even personality traits (ex. If you need more metal go organize something).

    • The order of elements: Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, Water

  • Wood

    • Water creates wood (trees and plants need water to grow)

      • Add more water if you need more wood

    • Add metal to diffuse wood (ex. Wear metal jewelery)

  • Fire

    • Wood creates Fire (need wood to build fire)

      • Add more wood if you need more fire

    • Add water to diffuse fire

  • Earth

    • Fire creates Earth (Fire produces ash which turns into earth)

      • Add more fire if you need more earth

    • Add wood to diffuse earth (Wood takes space of the earth as it grows)

      • Ex. If you’re gaining a lot of weight or worrying a lot, more wood in your life will help keep balanced

  • Metal

    • Earth creates Metal (When earth is compounded it turns into metal (which we dig out of the ground to use))

      • Add more earth if you need more metal

    • Add fire to diffuse metal (Ex. Light a few candles)

  • Water

    • Metal creates Earth (Imagine condensation on the outside of a metal glass)

      • Add more metal to be more water

      • Ex. Water ppl have easier time to meditate. If you’re struggling to meditate, add more metal (like a metal candle holder or mala) so that you can enhance the water state

    • Add earth to diffuse water

Links & Resources:

If you have any questions for Caitlin Donovan or want to learn more, connect with her through:

Website:  caitdonovan.com 

Facebook: facebook.com/caitlindonovanprague

 Caitlin’s Face Reading Quiz

Caitlin recommended this book if you’d like to learn more about Face Reading:  Face Reading and Chinese Mediciine by Lillian Bridges