What To Do When You Just Don’t Feel Up To It.

This has been quite a year for all of us. You have the maskers and the anti-maskers, the serious lack of work for those in close contact with others (me!), the devastating fires and floods, and now another crisis from the other side of the world, that we are partially guilty of perpetuating.

I am wondering how high your anxiety level is about now! Yes, we are somewhat resilient and have found other ways to make a living in 2020 and beyond, but some things have permanently changed, not to go back.

"The water continually flowed and flowed yet it was always there.  It always stayed the same, and yet every moment it was new".  

This was the quote I wrote in my high school year book.  It comes from the book Sidhartha by Hermann Hesse, a well known writer in the seventies.  

This concept is one of the true anchoring ideas that I got from this last pandemic experience. Life felt upside down, yet every moment we were still here LIVING and getting by.

A few things I did in order to feel better:

  • Stopped reading and watching the news every day. I carefully picked what news to listen to, and how long to watch/read.
  • Started my own yoga practice daily. Having taught yoga for many years helped a lot, but now the practice was for me only. I found that I wanted to rest longer in poses, breathe more deeply, spend more time in the reclining poses like spinal twist (Supta Matseyandrasana).
  • Slept more, and more consistency in the times I went to bed and woke up.
  • Worked on creative things in my business, including creating a 30 Day Renewal Map video course, which you can find here on the shop tab!
  • Did more meditation, particularly working on myself and bringing forward more empathy and compassion for myself and others.
  • Started a Facebook Group; Healing Into Abundance Inner Circle, which you can join. As usual, this group goes quiet sometimes, and I get really involved at others. Like real life!
  • Intentionally planned to read more about climate change, and thought and acted on simple things I can do now; keeping the environment center in my awareness.

So what about you? Is there a shift for the better that you can describe about how your year went? Were you super stressed about money? If so, how did you deal with it? Did you start baking bread? (Apparently people couldn’t even find yeast in the supermarkets because so many took up bread baking!) Did you prioritize your self care in a tangible and measurable way? Did you know anybody who had covid? I did; my sister got off easy, but another friend got it right in the beginning, and she was sick for months. My older cousin died in a nursing home of it, but there were other complications that made her more susceptible.

Plus I couldn’t visit my aging parents for a year and a half, which caused some disquiet.

But…things are starting to shift, internally and externally, and now there is hope for the new…2021 and beyond; what will you dream up?

Wishing you a lazy few weeks at the end of the summer to journal, dream, envision, and CREATE what comes next for you!

Diane Sussman is a Wellness Expert, and a Life Transition Coach. If you are feeling that you could use some guidance and accountability in bringing your dreams alive, go to the “Work with Diane” and let’s get on a call to see if we are a fit for my 3 or 6 month coaching programs! Or just email: Diane@healingintoabundance.com

Are We Ready For Our Post-Covid Party?

Ahh Spring! This Spring has arrived with a whole new sense of creativity and power for me.  I feel so free to live again after the vaccine.  AND, it is not lost on me how many countries are still without it, and how emotionally painful that is; India, Brazil, so many others. 

So what has this past Covid-2020 brought to me?  Isolation, lack of the beautiful hands-on work that I have grown used to doing for more than 30 years.  Loss of two yoga venues that couldn’t make it through the pandemic, and so losing and missing my students terribly.  And, quite frankly, not getting enough exercise… We all coped in different ways. 

I got very quiet.  Some of that is a good thing.  I realized, for one thing, that I was actually really fatigued, and used a great deal of my time to sit quietly and read and meditate, to do slow movement choreography, authentic movement (something I did years ago and really loved!) and dance that I improvised in my own living room, and I got back home to myself in a way that had alluded me somewhat because of being so “other-directed” for so many years. 

We also couldn’t travel, which had been a luxury that my husband and I were getting used to. 

These last four years had sent us to two family weddings and a Bat Mitzvah, and four trips to Europe, which fulfilled a dream that I had to travel and be in many beautiful and culturally exotic environments.   Not to mention the food!  I love Northern Italian food; the particular flavors and ways of preparing food that elevated it to an art form.  My passion for olives grew too, and really delicious olive oil.  And I actually learned how to make the little elephant ear pastas from a Southern Italian master. 

So what did we do instead?  All of the travel shows on Netflicks, of course!  Footloose in Italy, Scotland, England, etc, etc.  AND we zoomed…with family, friends, music buddies, Alexander Teachers; I actually got comfortable with teaching the Alexander Technique on zoom!  Never thought that would happen, but now I have a whole zoom protocol for dealing with stress and sore neck and butt syndrome. 

To that end, I wrote an e-book, which you can find on Amazon.com, called The Body-Mind Renewal Blueprint, ($2.99) and now my sequel to that is a Course I am calling “The 30 Day Renewal Map” which is almost complete.   I will let you know where you can find that too.  It consists of 30, 10-15 minute videos on all things Body-Mind. 

After all I am an Alexander Teacher and Healer, so I have to be good for something, right? I’m actually not bragging at all.  In fact, it has been a huge creative opportunity for me to share my wisdom of decades of doing this work. 

It has some yoga, pilates, AT, breathing instruction OF COURSE, and other body-mind-balance practices that have been helpful for me along the way, that emphasize stress reduction and self-care practices. 

It’s like ordering the pizza with all the stuff on it!  That means there is something for everyone. Here’s the video!

Time to De-Clutter!

I know I say this every year, but spring is time to de-clutter! Really, any time is, but I feel that extra desire to fly free in the spring. So here is my latest de-cluttering story…

Last week my siblings (my brother and sister) and I flew down to Florida from our respective homes, to help my parents get ready for the sale of their house.  It was a week of de-cluttering, for sure!  I was happy to be there, and we got down to business; each room, each drawer got an overhaul.  We were organized and efficient, and by the end of the week we had 32 black garbage bags filled with trash, and an entire garage of give-aways, including pretty much all of my childhood memorabilia. 

What was so surprising, was how easy this project was to do for someone else, so why is it so hard to do for myself?  Can you relate?  Have you ever decided to de-clutter your own home, and started with energy and glee to get going, only to drag your heels and start procrastinating instead?  URG. Well, since I am still on the wings of my productive week last week, here are a few suggestions for you, if you are thinking about rolling up your sleeves and doing some serious spring cleaning… 

Decide on one room or closet. Take everything out of it. Clean well. Then CHOOSE what you will put back in. There are two other piles; one goes to the garbage and one goes to good will (charity). Call the charity of your choice, and keep those black bags in one place till garbage day.

Sound easy? Nope! Things will come up. Remember these things represent your past (in my case, my whole childhood!) and they hold a vibration, which needs to be loved into healing. Of course you can keep everything, but do you really want to?

Then there were the family dynamics. That too, but that is for another day.

Morning Rituals #9

Take time for yourself, to quiet the mind, and FEEL appreciation for your life…

We are up to our last Morning Ritual to Slow the Stress in Just 10 Minutes a Day!  Woo Hoo!  You made it!

This morning ritual may be a bit illusive or challenging, depending upon what emotions are stirring up for you throughout your day/night. I myself woke up this morning with a lot of sadness and maybe even some regret about things long past. 

But that’s part of life, and how we flow and actually HEAL from past events/trauma/relationships…you name it!  We humans are complex beings. Memories will often come up out of the blue, and take us for a ride. It is especially in these times that connecting and anchoring within yourself is important.

You are the Master of your own well being. You are also the only one who can bring balance to your emotions, and connect with the greater field of life. that is where the magic is. Because in making the conscious effort to listen to the whispers of the self, you give yourself the opportunity to live fully present to ALL of life.

This 9th Morning Ritual is simply to take a minute or two and connect deeply within yourself, and really feel appreciation and gratitude. Make a conscious connection with something you are grateful for; a roof over your head, food in your refrigerator ready to eat at any time; the grass under your feet, someone in your life who cares about you… 

As usual, I have a short video to offer some ideas for how to slow down and connect with gratitude.    Enjoy!  

As you breathe, slow down, and connect deeply with your body, allow your appreciation for life to bubble up…

Your “Six Rocks”

OK!  We are up to Morning Ritual #8, deciding your six rocks for the day…What do I mean by that?  Well you have to know the story told by Stephen R. Covey in his book “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (1989). I have created a video for you today, to hear the story and apply it to your own business and life!

I read this book more than 20 years ago, and I never forgot the importance of this concept. Of course there are many ways that you can set up your day for success, but this simple visualization, and then CHOOSING will go a long way toward gettin stuff done! Here is the VIDEO!

Healing The Vagus Nerve

Healing The Vagus Nerve for the Ultimate Stress Reduction experience!

I have always known about the autonomic nervous system as a regulator of the organ functioning in the body. What I didn’t know about, was how important the vagus nerve is in the reduction from the “Stress Response” that causes undo responses physically and emotionally, and that keeps us in the “flight-fright-freeze pattern”.

We need the fight or flight response in order to get our of danger quickly. However, in modern life, that older automatic response to danger gets overblown, and keeps us in a stress pattern that does damage to our equanimity. One could say that we in the Western world are always in a degree of stress response, because we don’t know how to turn off the sympathetic nervous system and go back to our “rest and digest” ability to cool out and stay calm! It’s like the light never turns off.

There are countless ramifications of the stress response; ongoing anxiety, tension, our breathing being disturbed (holding our breath), and irritability. These are all consequences of not being able to adequately regulate our stress levels.

But what if I could show you a 2 minute stress reducer that will calm the nervous system and regulate that response, bringing you back to equanimity and so being able to more freely go about your day with ease? Well, here it is! The Basic Exercise for the restoration of the Vagal Nerve back to the pathway it needs to move in…the Ventral Channel.

Here is a video to show you how!

Confidence Enhancers

Morning Rituals #6: There is a medicine that only comes to you when you pause momentarily and connect with yourself in a compassionate and loving way. Do you affirm yourself on a daily basis? This is key to increasing your self confidence, bring in more courage, and embody your own truth.

So much of the time we hold on to old patterns of belief and behaviors that only serve those old beliefs. It is hard to shift out of them. Why? They were often placed within us in childhood. They have become normal to us. They are repeated over and over.

But, there is a way out, and it is the path of courage, self-confidence, and SOVEREIGNTY.

I claim myself to be The Sovereign Woman’s Coach, to draw on your courage and confidence to break through old patterns that have kept you from the life you want and the dreams you have. You can heal and transform. Affirmations are a quick start to holding the energy of WHAT IT IS THAT YOU ARE WANTING, so that you don’t keep falling backwards into how things always were.

“I Am Enough”. “I Am Powerful”. I Am Peaceful. Watch this video for more thorough explanations of how to do affirmations, and why there is great value in spending some time with this practice. Enjoy!

Eat Delicious, Nourishing Food

The third practice that I would like you to do in your Morning Rituals, is imagine that you are already eating delicious, nourishing food in your day.  See it happening…visualize breakfast, lunch and dinner with lots of fruits and vegetables, lean meats (if you are a vegetarian or vegan, what other legumes will you supplement with?) you will choose to prepare, the pure water you will drink… feel your energy and mood be enhanced with that thought.  

This is called “pre-paving”.  You are intending for your food intake for the day to be good for you, what your body and mind need for clarity and peacefulness.  Let your imagination take you on a little journey.  

Here is a video where I attempt to broach this very large subject!!

Just Breathe!

Our second ritual to do in the morning is my favorite.  After visualizing your perfect day for 1-3 minutes, go ahead and seat yourself in a comfortable position, with legs crossed or feet on the floor.

You will take the next 5 minutes following your breathing.  Yes, how simple is that?  You can make it as simple or as elaborate as you wish.  If you have a regular meditation practice, this will be a cinch for you.  If not, no worries, your only job is simply to notice the movement of the breath inside the body.
Here is a short video to get you started…

Ritual #2 is my favorite; taking 5-10 minutes to close your eyes and notice the breath. Here is how…