Feel good NOW!

Most of us know that when we look good, we tend to feel good.
But are you aware that the opposite is also true?

When we feel good, we look good.

Think about a time when you felt really great about yourself.  How much more comfortable were you in your own skin?  How powerful and confident did you feel?  When we feel accomplished, triumphant, successful, truly loved, filled with purpose – of course we look better.  Our body chemistry is completely different than when we feel confused, failed, unloved, directionless, or under attack.

It is common in this world, I have noticed, for people who are reaching for a weight-loss goal to try to reach that goal by forcing, harassing, restricting, stressing, pushing, and hating themselves.  

It is also common to decide that the body is not right by societal standards, so it must not be liked, in fact it must be hated.  We feel we must hate the body into submission, hate our eating issues for making us fat, hate food for being so fattening and delicious at the same time, hate our appetite, flog ourselves at the gym until we finally reach a weight where we will feel better about ourselves, or just give up entirely and eat for solace because we are so damned imperfect.

If any of this resonates for you, you’re not alone! 

Somehow this crazy world has conditioned us (brainwashed us through media propaganda, and advertising campaigns designed to sell a magic fix for bodies that are not right by societal standards) to believe that we must hate ourselves until we reach their standards.  To which I feel compelled to reply:

Fuck. Their. Fucking. Standards.

I invite you to join me in saying, “Fuck their standards.” 

If they don’t like my body, FUCK them.  Because you know what I decided to do?  I decided to approve of my body right now.  I decided that their standards are fucking stupid, and they do not appeal to me, so they do not apply to me because I am the authority on what is fucking beautiful in my life.  

Why?  Cause it’s my life. 

Their judgements only count if I give them validity and I just revoked their right to decide anything for me.  I choose to decide for myself.  I invite each of you to step into your own power and decide for your self what is beautiful in your life, because who the fuck are THEY anyway?  Who are they to judge ME unworthy? 

I am a child of God, a conduit of Divine love and light, and I will not dim my light to allow them to feel comfortable in my presence!

They want me to feel diminished, unworthy, and powerless so that they can grow rich and feel better about themselves. Fuck that! And while we’re at it, fuck the collective ‘them’ who believes they are anyone’s authority on what is good and right and beautiful.

If we feel more beautiful when we are feeling truly loved, then what POWER we wield when we choose to truly love ourselves as we are, without waiting for the approval of others.

I choose to feel my true divinity flowing through me.  I choose to feel confident and powerful.  And every time I feel the Divine Truth of Who I am, I look fucking amazing.

photo by donnio, on a day when i felt GREAT and it shows.

Grow on!

  • What is stopping you from feeling good about you NOW? 
  • What baby steps can you take toward loving yourself more now?
  • What kind of example do you want to set for your children and grandchildren?
  • Each time you become aware that negative self-talk arises,
    what can you say to remind yourself to move gently back in the direction of self-love?

Slow Food

Remember last week’s blog post when I talked about stress, the effects of stress on our body, and the difference between life stress and self-chosen stress? 

If not click this link to read all about it!


This week I want to talk about one self-chosen stressor in particular.  It’s insidious in our culture, and most of us are not even aware that it is a stressor!  

Are you a fast eater, a slow eater, or a moderately paced eater?

Ninety percent of people asked this question answered, “fast”.  And guess what?  Human biology interprets eating fast as being stressed.

Remember, we saw that constant low-level stress causes increased insulin, and increased cortisol which can lead to:

  • weight gain
  • inability to lose weight
  • inability to build muscle
  • decreased calorie burning
  • increased fat deposits at midsection
  • increased inflammation
  • gut microbiome die off
  • nutrient wasting
  • decreased energy
  • appetite deregulation
  • desensitivity to pleasure
  • decreased metabolism
  • decreased Thyroid function 
  • decreased oxygen uptake
  • poor sleep

Imagine how this affects us if we have a weight challenge, or body transformation goal!  Even if we are not pursuing a food and body goal, none of these optimizes our health.  It makes complete sense that we want to reduce stress whenever possible. 

If you answered that you are a “fast” or even “moderately paced” eater, then you have now identified a stressor that you can choose to get rid of!  Reducing stress always has positive benefits, so why wouldn’t we put some effort into slowing down with our food?

The main reason is because eating fast is a habit. 

Generally, until someone asks us this question, we never even consider our eating speed.  In fact part of the problem is that many of us never even consider our food! 

We may skip breakfast or grab a pastry at the coffee shop, then eat lunch at the desk or running between clients, then grab some take out on the way home for dinner.  If any of these behaviors sound familiar, then you have a golden opportunity to release some of the stress that you carry!

(Slowing down with food is also a first step in releasing patterns of bingeing, after-dinner eating, and overeating.)

If you are interested in trying to break the habit of eating fast, you have much to gain!  So what do you have to lose (besides stress)? 

Here are some other symptoms caused or exacerbated by fast eating which can also diminish or go away completely:

Eating fast is a habit.  Eating more slowly requires some effort because we are creating a new habit, and new habits take time. This is NOT about counting bites. This is about relaxing with food and increasing pleasure! This is about enjoying our mealtimes and boosting happiness. This is about being present, becoming aware & listening to our body.

Fast eating is a habit.

Slow eating is a habit worth cultivating.

Grow on!

If you want to release the stress of fast eating, start by coming to your meals in as relaxed a state as you can.  Try to eat somewhere quiet when possible, or at the very least not in an environment that feels stressful.  Don’t watch the news, and incorporate some music that relaxes you if that appeals to you.

Before you begin to eat, take two or three grounding breaths.  Allow your heart rate to calm, then turn your attention to your meal.  Be present with your food.  Savor the flavor.  Explore the textures on your tongue.  Really enjoy the relaxed time with your food.  Food is meant to be a satisfying pleasure.

If you are eating food you do not enjoy, ask yourself, “why?”.  Food is meant to nourish body, mind and spirit, and we absorb far more nourishment from food we enjoy than from food we do not enjoy.

If you generally take 5 minutes for your meal, try to make it last 10 or 15 minutes.  If you generally eat in 15 minutes, try to stretch that out to half an hour.

I hear you!  

Life is busy.  Sometimes, unfortunately, we might actually have only five minutes to eat.  We can still approach our meal in a more relaxed and calm manner.  If you truly only have a short time, make that time count.  Breathe deeply and relax.  Taste what you are eating.  Be present to the flavor and texture. 

Enjoy!


Find lots more information on the benefits of slowing down when we eat in this fabulous book by Marc David, the founder for the Institute for the Psychology of Eating.

Stop Choosing Extra Helpings of Stress

The dictionary says stress is a state of mental or emotional tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances.

The dictionary is wrong.  How do I know?  Because stress is a feeling – an emotion – and the only place our emotions come from is from the thoughts we think.

Adverse or very demanding circumstances will absolutely cause some people to think thoughts that lead to feeling stressed.  Those exact same adverse or very demanding circumstances will cause others to think thoughts that lead to feeling exhilarated.

Our Thoughts create our Emotions, which drive our Actions.
We each brew our own TEA.

What Thoughts/Emotions/Actions am I conjuring?

Since this is absolutely true, we want to select our thoughts with great care and intention.  

Self-chosen stress vs normal, natural stress.

What is a “normal” or natural life stress?  These are stressors that we cannot control, like aging, health concerns, natural disasters, financial setbacks.  Those kinds of stress show up in every life, and Google can offer myriad advice on how to handle them.  I want to talk about optional stress – the stress we choose that is completely unnecessary – yet is often MORE damaging to our health and peace of mind than natural stress.

Self-chosen stressors include, but are not limited to:

  • negative self-talk
  • self body shaming & body hate
  • adopting weight loss strategies that are stringent & impossible to maintain
  • artificially controlling appetite
  • limiting a needed macronutrient such as protein, fat, or carbohydrates
  • believing we are unlovable, and will never be loved unless we lose weight or look different
  • trying to create an impossible-to-have body
  • unfavorably comparing oneself to others
  • believing we are alone in this world, or that the universe is against us

The list goes on, and is different for each of us.  When we choose these stressors, we live under a constantly higher level of stress than is necessary. 

Most of us have plenty of natural stress in life, so why would we choose this type of self-harming thinking?  We have been conditioned over a lifetime to choose these stressors. We didn’t make this stuff up.  We didn’t invent thinking negative thoughts about ourselves.  The world we live in trained that behavior into us, some more than others.

Other than the fact that stress feels crappy, why do we want to begin learning how to let go of these self-chosen stressors?  Constant stress causes increased insulin, and increased cortisol which can lead to:

  • weight gain
  • inability to lose weight
  • inability to build muscle
  • decreased calorie burning
  • increased fat deposits at midsection
  • increased inflammation
  • gut microbiome die off
  • nutrient wasting
  • decreased energy
  • appetite deregulation
  • desensitivity to pleasure
  • decreased metabolism
  • decreased Thyroid function 
  • decreased oxygen uptake
  • poor sleep

So how do we begin to let go of these self-chosen stressors?

Awareness is always the first step.
We cannot change it if we do not see it.

The Grow on! section below includes a way to begin cultivating more awareness around self-chosen stress.

Don’t beat yourself up for thinking stressful thoughts!  It’s a conditioned human behavior. Give yourself some grace, practice letting go of self-chosen stressors, and see what happens for yourself!

Grow on!

How does stress show up in your body?   
Write a physical description of how it feels when you are STRESSED about something. For some people it will include sweaty palms, or a racing heart. For others it might feel like a twist in the solar plexus or a kick in the gut. Whatever it is for you, take a minute to describe the physical sensations that arise for you when you feel stressed out.

Practice awareness by noticing these physical symptoms each time they show up. As you become aware that you are feeling your symptoms of stress – ask yourself what thought you were thinking that caused the symptoms. Then ask yourself if it is a life stress, or a self-chosen stress.

If it is something you are choosing to think/believe, what will it take to give self permission to let it go?

Reframing thoughts is a superpower that grows with coaching! 

If you are ready to let go of some of your self-chosen stress and need some help or guidance, I would love to chat with you! Click THIS LINK to schedule a free conversation to see if I am the right coach for you!

Be Your Own Best Friend!

Have you ever told your best friend that she looked fat in her outfit, or that she needs to drop a few pounds?  Have you ever looked your best friend in the eye and told her she should be ashamed of her body or her weight?  No?

Then why the fuck would you do it to You?

Have you ever looked at an infant with her chubby knees and thought, “I just can’t love someone with all that fat!”  I seriously doubt it.  

So why do we withhold love from ourselves, or shame ourselves for fat on our body?  Why would we hold ourselves to a higher standard of perfection?  How possible is it to love ourself the way we love our friends?

Hate does not help.  Hate does not motivate.  Hate does not inspire.

If we perceive that someone does not like us, we often feel wounded, or hurt.  It is no less painful when the disapproval comes from self!  Disapproval of self can damage the psyche, delay healing, and derail our goals.  

We cannot hate ourselves into loving our body, and as a wise client recently reminded me, we cannot heal what we hate.  If we live in a home we hate, how much effort will we put into repairing it?  Same goes for our body!  If we have a body transformation goal, how much effort are we willing to put in if we constantly tell ourselves the body is unlovable as it is, and needs to be fixed?

Next time you look at yourself appraisingly, give yourself as much love and support as you would give your best friend!  Next time you get a little off track with your plan, or goals, try gently encouraging yourself back on track rather than belittling or berating yourself for a perfectly normal human moment.  

Perfection is a damaging illusion, a standard to which we rarely hold others, yet frequently try to hold ourselves. Our body transformation goals cannot manifest when we are under attack.

What will it take to treat you like your own best friend?

Grow on!

Practice looking in the mirror and telling that beautiful human how MUCH you love them. This is challenging for many people, so don’t give up. Persist with the practice of telling you that you love you, more often than you tell yourself negative messages.

Next time you catch yourself saying something mean to self, pretend you caught yourself saying it to your friend, or your child. What would you do? I might hug them and apologize and promise to be more intentional as often as possible moving forward.

Make a list of everything that you appreciate about your body! Our body is a miracle that we often take for granted. We can be so grateful for our lungs that breathe without any effort, a heart that beats for our lifetime, and so much more! We cannot focus appreciation and disgust onto the same object at the same time, so keeping this list handy can help when we are feeling frustrated with our body in some way.

No one has ever been Motivated by Shame

I feel confident in saying that one of the larger underlying goals of most body transformation goals is to increase the amount that we like ourself, and be more happy.  

I might like myself better in that special occasion dress, or maybe I like myself better as a potential employee at an upcoming interview.  Maybe I believe that I will be more likable to possible romantic partners once I achieve my goal.  I will like my life journey more when I reach that goal!  I’ll like the way I look in my vacation photos more once I look a certain way.  Along our path we became conditioned to believe that we are “not enough” and that our body is not good enough.  “If my body’s not good enough by cultural standards, I can’t love my body.  If I can’t love my body, I have to hate it.”  But we know we’ll like ourselves much more once the body transformation goal is met.

Here’s the fucking problem ~

We try to hate ourselves to the goal!  We may restrict calories, skip meals, increase workouts that we hate, over commit to new changes, get on the scale every day, get discouraged by weight fluctuations, overeat to soothe our emotions, then beat the crap out of ourselves for not being perfect at body transformation in every way.  We compound our brutal physical treatment of ourselves by brutally beating ourselves mentally for what we see as our own failure.

If this sounds familiar to you, please know you are not alone.  This is pretty common human behavior.  It’s the way we’ve been trained to go after our body transformation goals, and we’re beginning to realize that it’s doomed to failure.  We simply cannot hate ourselves into liking ourselves more.  The path to love and friendship is not paved with hate and shame.

No one has ever been motivated by shame.

Shame and self-hate take us in the opposite direction of our goals.

Let’s shift for a minute from a body transformation goal to a reading transformation goal.

Imagine you have a child who is struggling in reading.  The teacher tells you they are behind the rest of their class.  Would we shame and belittle them into reading better?  Would we hate them until they catch up with the rest of the class?  Would we tell them that we can’t love them until they are a better reader?  Of course not!  This course of action would not only damage the psyche, it would cause the child to hate reading.

Will we create success by insisting they do exercises they hate or by finding fun ways to grow their love of reading?  Will they gain more confidence if we yell at them each time they are imperfect or if we are supportive and encouraging each time they perform well?

How can we shift this same loving approach to our weight and body challenges?

Rule #1 ~ Don’t beat yourself up.

Our healing journey is a roller coaster full of ups and downs.  We need to be easy with ourselves as we learn what works for us, and what does not work.  As I mentioned in a previous post, there are no magic fucking beans. There is no magic pill, nor is there one right way to do relationship to food and body, nor one right way to eat.

For these reasons, we are the scientist in our own body transformation journey. Through trial and error we will find what is best for us individually, though it might not be right for anyone else! What does not work is not “failure.” Rather it is valuable information to inform our future choices!

"The more you beat yourself up for doing something you said you didn’t want to do, the more you will continue to return to the ‘scene of the crime’ and you will continue to do the very same thing that you said you didn’t want to do - NOT because there is something wrong with you - but because that is how body wisdom, and life wisdom teaches us.  We learn through repetition, so body wisdom, life wisdom will return us to the scene of the crime - life classroom - until we learn to integrate the lessons.  Until we learn to love ourselves, until we learn to stop beating ourselves up because we did something we said we didn’t want to do. Until we learn to forgive self."  
            ~ Marc David, founder of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, and author of Nourishing Wisdom: A Mind-Body Approach to Nutrition and Well-Being

Body transformation starts with love, not hate.

If you’re feeling shame or hate about self or body, please remember you’re not alone.  You didn’t make this stuff up – it’s embedded in our culture. Shame and hate feel icky because they do not belong to our true vibration (our true vibration is unconditional love).  Since they don’t belong to us, we can choose to simply let them go! Check out two ways to do this below in the “Grow on!” section.

Letting go of body shame and self-hate is the ESSENTIAL, non-negotiable first step toward every body transformation goal. We can’t transform the body while simultaneously beating it up. Healing transformation can never happen in the presence of the toxic body chemistry created by shame and hate.

True body transformation is possible

Every body transformation is a unique journey, a process that requires time and love. Making the shift from hate to love is possible. If you’d like some help making that shift a reality, you can schedule a private chat with me at THIS LINK, or check out my Body Transformation group at THIS LINK.

Grow on!

Here are two techniques that are wonderfully useful in letting go of negative emotions like shame and hate that do not serve us.

Grounding it – When you become aware of feeling shame or self-hate, remind yourself that it is not yours and you don’t have to carry it.  Take a deep breath and as you exhale, simply drop it onto the ground.  Imagine it pouring out of your palms onto the ground until it is gone and you feel lighter.

Give it to the light – The vibration of shame and hate can feel BIG.  See it shrinking smaller and smaller until it fits in the palm of your hand, or on the tip of one finger.  Hold it up and offer it to the Light.  You feel lighter as the light easily removes the unwanted emotion.

Marvelous Mind Movies

We want to collect practices that make us feel connected to the energy at the source of everything.  All of us emanate from one Source.  We come from Source, and spend our entire lives trying to reconnect with Source energy because it feels good. Connection with source is what we came here for.  Connecting with Source feels like plugging your human batteries into a charger.  The more practices we collect and play with, the more energy we have for living our lives.

One of the battery-charging practices I love is called Mind Movies.

Mind movies feel GOOD when we see them in our mind.

We each want to curate our own collection of favorite memories, fulfilled desires, sunsets that bring us to tears, magical moments when we feel infused with love, where all is right with our world and we feel as if our lives are charmed and we are connected to the whole universe, and to Source!

When did you last feel high on life? When did you last imagine an upcoming event that was so exciting you could hardly stand to wait for it?

Maybe you felt it the first time you saw your puppy, or maybe you remember feeling completely loved by your grandmother at some moment in the past.  Can you remember a moment where you felt completely connected to your partner as if you were the center of their universe?

I’m not talking about a time period in your life, or a six-month span or even a really fun weekend. I’m talking about moments. Laser focus in on moments that make you feel like your heart has wings.  Like that time in the hot tub at that hotel when the wind came up and for a moment, the entire world seemed magical and perfect.

These moments – our Mind Movies – energize us, sustain us, nourish us, and recharge our batteries.  They don’t even have to be moments that you’ve experienced already, they could be ones that you’re still looking forward to as long as they make you feel uplifted, happy, connected, fulfilled, nourished or joyful when you think them. Play the movies frequently to add energy to your day.

Why do these kinds of thoughts charge our batteries? Our brains run on chemistry, and when we think happy thoughts we create happy chemistry.   Our super human brains are incredibly magnificent, but they have no way of knowing if the thoughts we are thinking are happening right now, in the past, or in the future.  

So we use these mind movies about things that make us feel really good to charge our batteries, and connect us to Source energy.

Mind Movies is just one practice we can play with to charge our batteries, raise our energy, and increase metabolism!  I’ll be talking more about energy-raising toys & practices, so stay tuned!

Grow on!

Set aside some time to sit quietly and mull over your life.  Sift through your memories to find the juiciest, most marvelous, and delicious ones.  Make a list of moments as they come to you.  Imagine them in as much detail as you can remember or CREATE – remember these movies do not have to have already occurred.  We can conjure vibe-raising moments.

What are you wearing? What do you smell, taste, hear?  Is it windy? Sunny? Are you in the forrest, mountains, at the coast?  The more details you add, the more vivid the movie!

Keep your list of Mind Movies handy to raise your vibe whenever you want!

Failed Fucking Fairy Tales

Do you remember Aesop’s fables?  

Slow and steady wins the race.

The fable always ended with the turtle winning the race.  I knew the moral was to go slow and make steady progress.  Be a turtle.  But I did not want to be a turtle.  The rabbit was full of love for life!  He visited with friends, enjoyed a good meal, and took pleasure in napping! He didn’t win, but he certainly enjoyed himself along the way.  

Hard work makes us stingy.

All day, every day the ants work hard while the grasshopper plays music, relaxes, and enjoys life.  The ants grow mean because they take no pleasure from life, and leave the grasshopper to die.  You just know if that grasshopper had food he would share it with the ants, because he’s happy and enjoying his life!  I could not understand why the ants were so mad at him for being in his joy.

What about those fairy tales full of quick fix magic?  

Beans grow into a ladder that leads to wealth.  A kiss can reverse death, and transform love into it’s true form.  Spinning wheels turn barn straw into purest gold, and Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo solves all that is wrong in the world.

In my child’s mind – to make it in this world, I either needed to find my fairy godmother, or work my fingers to the bone.  Magic leads to happily ever after, and the path of hard work leaves one hardened, cruel, and unwilling to share.  

Is it any wonder people are always looking for a panacea?

panacea ~
noun - cure-all, universal remedy, elixir, wonder drug, magic bullet.

I can’t tell you how many times I wished for a pill that would magically let me eat anything I wanted, while becoming slender and fit, or how many times I started a diet hoping I would become model-thin as quickly as possible so I could get away from boring rabbit food and return to eating what I wanted to eat.  

Once it became clear that the required magic was missing, I returned to my favored foods until the next quick-fix diet came along, and I’d jump on that bandwagon hoping for the magic doorway to a perfect body (whatever I thought that meant at the time).

Magic is real.

Real magic is not in the beans, the wand, or the kiss.  Real magic exists in the slow, sustainable, baby steps.  The turtle had the magic all along!  Sure we recognized that his slow and steady progress won the day, but he made it look so dull!  Of course we want to keep moving toward our goal, but we need some fun while we move through our days.  Remember those stingy ants!

So we want to be both a turtle moving toward our goal in small sustainable steps, and a rabbit bouncing through life enjoying our journey.  I know that’s not what the fairy tales promised, but they fucking lied.  The magic is not outside us.

Real magic is inside each of us.  We are powerful beyond measure!

So why do we frequently NOT feel powerful?

We deplete our own power when we look outside ourselves for magic.  We literally hand our power over by denying that it is inside us! To wield our power, we must first own it.

Looking for the quick fix draws our attention away from our true Source of power.  If I believe that I am going to find a magic bean to fix my issues, why on earth would I ever try to do it on my own?  If we believe the answer is “out there,” we forget to look in here.  We forget that every goal is within reach if we just take one small step today, and another small step tomorrow, and one more the day after that.  We have the magic to manifest anything! 

Time is the missing ingredient. 

We own the power to create sustainable change one step at a time, but since we believe magic is supposed to happen overnight, we give up too soon before the magic has time to get a foothold.  We cry that we haven’t got what it takes, and that magic must not be real.  Real magic takes time.  We can create real change that lasts by believing we have the power, and mixing in the crucial ingredient: time.

When we choose fairy tale magic – we try, expect instant results, count it a fail, and give up.

When we choose real magic – we try, give it time, move toward the goal, give it time, adjust our efforts, move toward the goal, give it time, grow more confident, take bigger steps, paint broader strokes, and create the most beautiful, magical life we can imagine.  But we’ve got to believe in our own magic, and give it time to transform us.

Happily Ever After!

I hate to break it to you, but fairy tales fucked this up, too.  We will never reach a place where all is perfectly perfect, and no change, growth, or expansion is desired or required! Happiness is not a destination to reach someday, which is REALLY great news!  We can choose to be happy now instead of waiting to be happy at the end!

We can choose to be happy for no reason at all other than it feels GOOD to feel happy.

We can choose to be happy because we know we have magic.  We know that mixing our magic with time allows us to wield great power that transforms – our bodies, our lives, our careers, our relationships – whatever we wish, into whatever we want.  

Magic is a process.  Own your magic.  Give it time.  
There are no magic fucking beans.

Grow on! 

What is it you most want to transform? 
What is one small action you can take that moves you toward that transformation? 
Play with making a list of several actions that might lead toward that transformation, and play with the one that sounds most fun, or that you found effective in the past when you tried it. 
Play with that action for awhile and see how it fits. 
Try giving it time for the magic to grow. 
When you’re ready, choose another action and integrate that for awhile to see how it feels.  This is the process of creating magical transformation.


Studies show that coaching helps support your transformation magic by lending support, encouragement, and a solid belief that you do already have the magic.  We learn through repetition, so all transformation takes time.  If you are ready to create magic and would like some support, CLICK THIS LINK to schedule a free chat to see if I am the right coach for you!

Remembering Verla

My favorite aunt transitioned out of this life last month.  

(Fuck you COVID!)

Verla & Daniel

I began pondering life, death, and the overwhelming relief of ascension while she was sick and in the hospital, which is where last week’s blog post, Gravity vs. Lightness of Being came from.

I know she’s not gone.  I truly believe we are all eternal, and every time I am connecting to my highest vibration – unconditional Love – I have access to Verla right here and now.  These thoughts ease my heart, but does that mean I don’t feel sad?  

Fuck. No.

I miss Verla.  I am sad that one of the most positive influences of my life is physically absent.  One of my sources for unconditional love is less accessible to me.  I am still fully supported by the Universe, but for the moment I feel like someone stole one of the legs off the chair I am sitting in.  Balance takes effort, and I occasionally hit the floor.  

(And it is nobody’s business but mine, how long I lie on the floor eating Hershey bars before I get back up!)

Just because I am able to relax into uncertainty and embrace the eternalness of myself, and the eternalness of Verla, does not mean I am not angry at fucking covid, and hurting from loss – of course I am! 

I’m beautifully human that way, and feel the entire spectrum of emotions available  to me.

But my beliefs hold me up, so that my grief cannot drown me.  When I feel I’m going under, my beliefs rise like the life preserver they are to save my ass.  

In order to help transform my grief, I decided to share some stories of Verla here.  After all, our stories are what carry us after death.  

Cyndi, Patty, K Lynn, Jan, & Laura, with Verla front and center.

I met my aunt Verla when I was 6 months old.  She took me in her arms and called me Tuffy Duck.  I took to her like a second mother, and we were close my entire life despite how many miles lay between us.


When Grandma bought my sister and I our first bicycle, Verla drove the five of us to Des Moines – Verla, Grandma, Mom, Laura & me – five incredible women. 

We got the bike at Sears, and before we could push it to the front door, Laura and I started arguing – the way sisters will – about who would get to ride it first.  Mom and Grandma tried to stop the argument, but Verla mounted the bike, training wheels and all, and peddled right out the front door of Sears, assuring that she got to ride it first.  


In 1977, Mom took us to visit Verla in Baton Rouge, and we all went to the hottest movie released that summer, Star Wars: A New Hope.  None of us had ever seen anything like it.  Thus began my love affair with Han Solo (and – let’s just admit it – Harrison Ford), the Rebel Alliance, and the Evil Empire.  Three years later, Verla was in Iowa and took Laura and me to see The Empire Strikes Back.  I still love the Star Wars Universe, and remember fondly attending the first two movies with Verla, and calling her after viewing the third to revel in the triumph of the Endor Moon.


A couple of years ago, Verla broke her leg.  After more than a year of being mostly immobile and trying to save the leg, she chose to have it amputated above her knee.  I have never seen anyone as positive as Verla in the face of such a challenging recovery.  She called her leg stumpy, or sometimes Bob, and threatened to tattoo a smiley face on the end of it.  She joked with the techs who were making her prosthesis that she would like to have a pogo stick. 

She was a wonderful example of not sweating the small stuff, and apparently to Verla, losing a leg is small stuff, cause it sure didn’t dampen her spirit.  One of her church friends said Verla had fantastic sass, a lively spirit, a cutting wit, and a heart of gold.  I would have to agree on all counts.  


Mom, Verla & Uncle John

Verla was smart, funny, and full of life.  She was easy to talk to and put people at ease.  She loved Willie Nelson, and my uncle John.  She loved my mother in the way that only a fierce, protective sibling can – deeply and without condition – the same way she loved me and my sister, and her entire family.

She called me on her last day to tell me she was flying out.  I thanked her for all she had been to me, and all the love she had shared.  I assured her that I would continue to communicate with her, and follow her wisdom.  She assured me from her death bed that if I didn’t, she would kick my ass.  

I was her Tuffy duck, and she was mine.  I will think of her whenever I see a turtle, a monarch butterfly, a barking sea lion, or a royal red cardinal.  I will connect with her and listen for her wisdom every time I am plugged into Source energy, because if I don’t, I do not doubt that she will find a way to kick my ass.


My friend, Bekka May Curtis, gave me the most important reminder for which I thank her. “Verla will shine eternally in every universe and every sparkle of sun.” 

It’s true!  I feel it in my soul, and I see her in every sparkle of sun.

Amber with Verla

The intent of my blog is to empower the reader, so write on!

Optional Journal Prompts ~
How much do your beliefs buoy you up, or weigh you down?
What do you believe about the transition called death?
How well is that belief serving you?
What would you like to believe about death?
How do you want to be remembered?

Body Transformation Playground ~ FREE!

I am SO excited about my Mind Body Eating Coach certification training at the Institute for the Psychology of Eating!

I am studying Mind Body Nutrition, and Dynamic Eating Psychology.

Soon I will be a Certified Mind Body Eating Coach with several unique tools to help people with issues like emotional eating, stress eating, binge eating, yo-yo dieting, under-eating, food guilt, body shame, food and body judgment, intense appetite, digestive issues, and more.

I am discovering so much, and am eager to share with others!

I crave space to share the concepts and tools I am learning, and opportunities to answer questions that will arise in my coaching practice. I want to share with YOU if this is something that interests or excites you!

I envision creating a group coaching program where I help women and men – who have tried repeatedly to transform their issues with food and body – to finally achieve their goals. 

To align with this vision, I created Body Transformation Playground!

I am inviting you to play!

I know many people think of body transformation as hard work, and I want to reframe that by introducing some fun things we can do that lead to sustainable change. Of course if your goal is a super lean body and six-pack abs, then some kind of hard work and sweat will be involved, and most health and nutrition coaches have tools to help people map a path to this kind of goal.

I’m talking about helping those of us who have lifelong food issues we have repeatedly tried to “fix” with one kind of eating/exercise plan or another.

I sometimes engage in emotional eating.

Like so many people, I have used food to soothe stress for my entire life. Until I learned to address the emotional reasons I eat, no plan that my coach and I concocted could ever succeed, and no changes I made would stick. Weight loss and workout plans sometimes create results, but until we address the deeper issue of what to do about our stress, we can easily get derailed, or after progress we slip back into pre-programmed habits that land us back where we started.

If you are experiencing emotional eating, stress eating, binge eating, yo-yo dieting, under eating, unwanted weight, food guilt, body shame, judgment around food and body, intense appetite, or chronic digestive issues, you are NOT alone! PLEASE join me on the Body Transformation Playground for six months FREE!


You heard me right! The Body Transformation Playground is open to you for FREE for the next six months – if you choose to join – just because you’re on my mailing list, or because someone on my mailing list forwarded this to you!

If you want to explore real body transformation, I am here to play!
Let’s make it fun!

What’s Included?

Body Transformation Playground includes a twice-monthly email focused on the juiciest tidbits, toys, and tools for body transformation that I discover in my psychology of eating classes. The emails will include fun ways to transform our relationship with food, journal topics around food and body, motivational images, ongoing encouragement, and so much more!

Once a month on zoom (audio only), I will host Body Transformation Playground live, where I practice teaching the concepts I am learning, answer participant questions, and possibly even do a little live coaching when time permits!

I will share all I am learning about eating psychology and how to free ourselves from our eating issues, and in return all I ask is that you submit questions, and give feedback.

Submit questions. Tune in to hear answers. Give feedback. That’s it!

My coaching skills are solid, but my tech skills need polishing, so these first six months will be a learning space, play space, and experimenting space for all of us while I learn how best to create fun effective content, record videos, post replays, and handle Zoom meetings, all while playing with the toys and insights I am learning at the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, and sharing them with you!

Beyond this six-month series, I will be offering the Body Transformation Playground as part of a package for paid clients, so jump in now!

Join me to play with the idea that body transformation can be more fun than we have been allowing! Join me to discover more ease and enjoyment on the path to sustainable transformations!

If you are interested, subscribe by emailing me at cyndicombs@gmail.com

Simply email with “SUBSCRIBE TO PLAYGROUND” in the subject, and I will manually add your address to the list.

Currently, I am committing to Zoom meetings (audio only) on the following dates, but I may add more dates!

Dates to add to your schedule if you are interested in Body Transformation Playground:

All times listed are Pacific Daylight Time

  • Sunday, April 24 @ 6pm
  • Friday, May 27 @ 6pm
  • Monday, June 20 @ 6pm
  • Saturday, July 23 @ 9am
  • Sunday, Aug 21 @ 6pm
  • Monday, Sep 26 @ 6pm OR Friday, Sep 30 @ 6pm

I chose different days of the week to accommodate many schedules, and I am willing to be flexible with these dates based on feedback!

If joining this series excites you but you cannot make these dates, please reply to this email to let me know what day/dates/times would work for you, and we will try to work something out and add at least a few dates that will work for all of us!

Thank you so much for being willing to play some new ideas!

My practice grows through referral!

As you can tell, I am SUPER excited about my expanding coaching practice!

PLEASE forward this email if you know anyone who struggles with weight issues, emotional eating, stress eating, binge eating, yo-yo dieting, under eating, food guilt, body shame, food and body judgement, intense appetite, or digestive issues!

THANK YOU. I appreciate you!

Gravity vs. Lightness of Being

Humans are Source energy made flesh. 

Source energy flows to us, and is meant to flow through us, and back into our world. If we resist the flow, the energy becomes stuck and gets heavy, weighing down our physical form.  Recently my journal wondered, “What if gravity is an accumulation of stagnant energy?  What if our resistance to ‘go with the flow’ is what weighs us down, and holds us back from fulfilling our purpose in life?”  

We all know older people who seem more affected by gravity than their younger counterparts.  They don’t lift their limbs as high, and they move more slowly, as if their body is heavier.  They even get shorter, drawn closer to the earth.  Then there are octogenarians who seem less affected by gravity, and are lively, vibrant, full of energy, and active until their last breath. In my observation the second set often have very positive, relaxed attitudes, and seem more accepting, and willing to go with the flow than the less flexible individuals in the first set.

Let it go!

Energy wants to flow.  When we flow energy we feel alive and vibrant.  When we resist the energy, it feels like gravity pulls harder against us.  Our energy becomes depressed and we may feel stuck.

Have you ever had a really BIG worry that became suddenly resolved?  Do you remember the feeling of lightness that came over you with that solution?  I know what a huge relief I feel when I am able to let go of thoughts that don’t feel good.  It’s as if we release the energy we have been resisting in the same way a damn suddenly releases water it has been resisting.  Imagine how much less stress the damn wall suddenly feels!  Or how about when we finally let ourselves break down and cry over something for which we have been holding back tears? 

We always feel lighter once we let go.  Imagine the buoyancy then –  the relief  that comes – when we set down all of the resistance we have accumulated over a lifetime! 

I’m talking about the transition we call death as being a buoyant experience.  The transition from our physical body back into non-physical, pure, positive energy must be the most buoyant feeling!  Buoyant like a beach ball rocketing to the surface when we finally release it from under water.  

That is what Death is – a releasing of all the weighted worry of this world, to instantly ascend into worthiness, joy, and unconditional love.  Our Ascension from physical form to non-physical formlessness is powerful and instant, like a cork exiting a champagne bottle.  

We let go, and we ascend.

There Is No Death. We are eternal beings. We are One energy. We are connected always to Source. 

When we feel as if we are separated from Source we feel pain, so our purpose becomes to find ways to release resistance, and ascend back toward our Source (unconditional Love).  We actually come here to practice that ascension, that return to Love. 

We LIKE the way it feels when we release, relax, and return to the flow of unconditional Love. Each time we release our resistance to something, we bounce back toward our Source. Life is a process of moving away from, and back toward Source energy, and our emotions are a gauge to show us where we are in relation to that energy of unconditional love.

We do not die. 

That simple thought releases a lot of resistance for a lot of people.  Life does not end, we simply ascend.  We ascend to pure positive energy, and then later we decide to come back into human form for one reason. We like the way it feels to ascend from a state of resisting the flow of life force energy, into a state of freely flowing life force energy.

So if you feel heavy, like something is weighing you down, play with letting that shit go! 

Play with letting go just to see what it feels like. How much do you feel yourself rise back toward the Love at our core? We are here to enjoy ascension, so play with it and have fun!

Grow on!

Are we practicing being light or heavy?
How much are we practicing going with the flow?
How much are we practicing ascension?
How much are we resisting life force?
How can we lean more toward unconditional Love?
What is it you are ready to release right now?
What is it you are ready to be ready to release?