Hello…It’s been awhile!

Hello,

It’s been awhile. It’s been a long while. So, hello again 🙂 I hope this email finds you well, expanding, allowing and thriving on your path.

Truly, we are all being asked to allow; we are being given an opportunity to expand greatly beyond what we could have ever imagined making room for the greatest, most true, boundaryless version of ourselves. Do you feel it? Has this been your experience as well?

This has been happening for quite a while now and is now even more accelerated than ever. I mention this because it seems that when I really began to experience this expansion, this that I can explain only as a profound need to let go of it all, to allow, is when I began to go quiet- When I fell off my Facebook routine, my reaching out, my responding, my seeking outside of myself, the need to be seen, to be heard, to be understood, to connect to others, to check in with people, to let you know that I was thinking of you…. because at some point, there are no words, there just is.

In this just is, is silence, is stillness, is a profound knowing and feeling that we are already here, that where I and you and we are aiming to go, is already here in present time. My thinking of you and sending you my love energetically is really all that is needed.

I began to really see that anything else was and is just a distraction from what really is and what really is, is not what I have led myself to believe is true.

You see, when the lie becomes the truth for so long, and we begin to notice that, a disentangling process must begin. In this disentangling process a demand for silence of all outside influences becomes necessary. At least for me.

Beginning to truly see who I am beyond the structures of all that is imposed, is magnifying and magnificent. Truly, you, we, I, am already “there”! There is no place left to go, no thing you must do, than be here right now in your deepest truth.

What a gift that is!!!

There is no call to action here, there is no sales funnel, this isn’t a weekly digest, no sales pitch. We are done with that, aren’t we? I am.

I’m simply here to say hello. To let you know that you are here, you are home! That the greatest gift you can give yourself and the rest of the universe is to be TRULY YOU. Beneath what you thought you were, what you are supposed to be, …. deeply YOU!

I admire you. I thank you from the depths of me, for sharing you with me, with the world, with your community. You matter-a lot! Your unique gifts are here to be shared.

For those of you interested, we will be starting up a collaborative, bi-weekly meditation and mindfulness group in person and online. If you want to learn more about this, please reach out. This is a free opportunity and open to everyone! I hope you will come create, explore and play with us!

With love and gratitude on your journey home, 
Ali xo

Coffee With Chris

Chris and I have known each other for several years but to say we were friends would be an exaggeration. Over the years I have had the chance to get to know Bartl a little bit more. I sensed a softer side that seemed to embrace all different types without a ton of judgment. He seemed to have a genuine desire to connect and be part of the bigger whole. When a friend said she’d got to talking with him recently and that he was working on some pretty amazing projects fueled by his rugged past and that I would probably be interested in learning more, I reached out hoping to meet up and get to know what was alive for him and what he was co-creating.

Over coffee Chris and I totally “vibed”. In his share I realized we had a lot in common. His demons were demons I similarly knew well and while we allowed each other to unpack where we had come from, what that had all evolved into and what each of us are now co-creating with that wealth of experience was nothing short of synchronistic. Light attracts light and our lights came together to share, to connect and to say without words, “I see you. Thank you for travelling your path so bravely so that you are now able to bring your medicine into the world.”

Chris agreed to let me ask him some more questions. My aim with this “interview” is to share his heart, his mission and his medicine with you. With all of who I BE I am certain that those of us working to share our medicine with the world connect for a very special reason. That reason, to begin to powerfully pave the golden path back home to ourselves for all of us. Truly, this is why I have created Sanctuary Within which launches February 2019 and from my conversation with Chris, is why he has created Phoenix Transformation Experience, launching in the new year.

 

“I was always a big, fat kid.” Bullied and picked on while growing up, Chris suppressed all of his anger, emotions and feelings, put it under safe lock and key “where no one really knew where it was, except for me, but even I didn’t know where my key was, and so you forget about it.” As an athlete of violent sports, Chris used this aggression on the field or in the rink to fuel his performance. “I wasn’t much into fighting, but I did like hitting people in sports.” 10 years ago, Chris found weight lifting and although he “couldn’t hit anyone, at least I could be stronger than them and that would give me internal strength as well.”

“When I moved to California, I was introduced to hard core drugs and became a full-blown addict and borderline alcoholic for a good 2-3 years.” Chris describes to me that while sitting on the edge of his bed to put on his shoes one day, he sucked in his belly, held in the air, put on the right shoe, then the left, exhaled and stood up and became extremely light headed. Catching a glimpse of himself in the mirror, he says he will never forget the dialogue that went through his head. “You’re a fat piece of shit; nobody in the world is ever going to love you; you’re better off dead; you should just go kill yourself.” This was what Chris describes as his “traumatic event that wants to lead to change” which is Step One in his program Phoenix Transformation Experience. That very same day Chris applied for a competition that was looking for individuals who wanted to undergo a massive transformation.  The program would set the winner up with everything they would need from supplements to personal training, nutrition, check-ins and even a psychologist. In his unorthodox way, Chris applied with not ‘why they should choose him’ but ‘why they should not.’ His essay resonated with one of the coaches and he was picked to be their guy.

Coming off of a massive cocaine bender, Chris threw away his cigarettes, flushed the remainder of cocaine he had and got to work. It was December 1st, 2009 when his transformation began. Losing the majority of his weight during the first 3 months of the program, Chris was all in. “From December 1st– March 1stI lost 100lbs.”  If he was asked to walk one hour, he’d be sure he walked 2. Having just lost  his job Chris was forced to focus on his mission. Friends fell away as he required their support or to refrain from calling or texting. Chris’ mental, physical and emotional state became his number one priority. “I basically told my entire social structure to fuck off.” “If I wasn’t in the gym, walking or surfing, I was in my room blogging.” “It was awesome!”

Chris built an entire new network of friends and a support system as he began to build a fitness business of his own. “I was terrified”. He was forced to push harder and charge his real worth eventually owning his own gym. Fear of regression, Step Four in his program, fueled this push for building his business. “A guy from out of nowhere, with literally nothing, living out of his car, can build a successful business.” His catalyst, fear of going backward.

As we talked, I wanted to hear more about his mental transformation. Chris shared with me that Step Two is “Feeling Anger.” “I wish I would’ve seen a therapist much earlier on during my transformation,” he remarks. “We are always evolving; there is always something to work on.” Chris adds that he has been lucky to have coaches and mentors who continue to hold him accountable. “Doing the [internal] work is hard, and most people don’t want to look at it and do the work.” What I loved most that Chris shared in this part in our conversation was, “you have to be transparent and show your vulnerability, because that is where your true strength lies.” “Everybody is meant to have a gorgeous life but not everybody is willing to do it on their own. That is where coaches and accountability groups and programs like mine come into play.”

In 2019, Chris declares that he is “going backwards to go forwards.” He is committed to doing more activities by himself that bring about his happiness.” To tap into his own inner self. He reveals that when he was making the most money was the same time when he was surfing every day, going to Mammoth to snowboard 2 times a month and in general, when he was happiest and felt most alive and fulfilled. Being born out of all of this is the launch of Phoenix Transformation Experience. Chris has an amazing and well-rounded program laid out that is designed to get participants extremely uncomfortable in order to spin it all into a positive, new emergence. Phoenix Transformation includes physical fitness training and nutritional guidance all wrapped up in deep mental and emotional work. “I want to show people what life is like on the other side of the fire.” The eight week program is limited to 10 participants during the first round and can be done online or in person. You can find more information and hook up with Chris by going to chrisbartl.com. You can also follow him on Facebook and Instagram at chris.bartl.

 

I thoroughly enjoyed my conversation with Chris and more importantly the juice that came out of it. A genuine connection of now friends built on transparency and vulnerability. Thank you Chris for being authentically you.

 

3 Ways To Get Present NOW

Hello Light Beings!

If you’re incoming messages are anything like my own, I assume that Facebook Ads, IG stories, emails and event invitations ring something along the lines of inspiring you to ‘Get Present’, ‘Be here now”, “your life is NOW”! While I prescribe to this trumpeting of thought and way of being in the world, I often wonder how does one begin to become present? For as long as I can remember, I have been taught to plan for the future, to anticipate what may come, to answer the question, “what do you want to be when you grow up?”, to study for something in the future, to ruminate over the past and what may I have done differently…the list goes on. Since childhood play, I have not been encouraged to be in the present because there are more important things to worry about. In order to simplify this a bit and to help myself and others practice becoming more present in their daily lives, I outline below three ways in which you can get present, NOW!

1.) Ask yourself, “how am I feeling right now?” Without going into a big story or drama around why you feel the way you do, simply notice. Allow yourself to feel whatever it is that is alive for you in the moment.

2.) Notice how your clothing feels on your skin, the breeze on your face, the breath in and out of the nose. Again, try not to judge these feelings and make them good or bad or find a reason to change or fix. Just notice.

3.) LISTEN! If you are with someone else listen fully to what they have to say. Look into their eyes and be with them. If you are alone, listen to yourself. Take a step back and listen to the thoughts and feelings that are coursing through your mind and body. The greatest gift you can give anyone, including and most importantly yourself, is the gift of complete presence.

So, when you are with your friends and family over the holiday season (or anytime!) and you feel yourself lurching into the future or burrowing into the past, try one or all of these simple tips. I’d love to hear how they work for you. Let me know! What else do you do to allow yourself to come back to present awareness?

With much love and gratitude,

Ali xo

What To Do When You Are Triggered

When we feel triggered it is easy to look for the external cause. To put the blame on someone or something else. When I feel like I have been shot in the heart, when heat begins to rise in the body and I face the tactic of fight or flight (or my old favorite, fight and flight), I know it is time to turn inward and look straight into the eyes of my ego.

There she is. Trembling in her boots. Afraid that she will be found out and then killed. She is bitter, and she is small. She cannot handle the challenge, so she does everything she can to feel bigger. To do so, she places blame, puts the opponent down with some nasty remark and in general, steeps to the level of low. She feels wounded and lost and fights dirty to save her life.

This is my ego. This is my ego when threatened. This is my higher self completely awake and aware. This is the beginning of the end in the struggle between higher self and ego. When, through countless practice and a lifetime (or two, or three or more) of opportunity to come to peace with one another, to fully acknowledge and find humor in the ego, I can be free. Too often, we mix the two, ego and higher self. Only to be left in confusion and moreover, entrenched in a deep internal battle. It feels like a warzone in the body, mind and spirit.

When we can continually pause, especially in moments of trigger, and go within, we begin to put the weapons down one by one. The higher, more wise self carefully and confidently raises the white flag and declares peace. With a soft gaze and gentleness, the fires can burn out and all that we be can rest in the eyes of wisdom and love.

Each time you are triggered you might follow these steps to gain clarity and calm from your wiser, higher self:

  • Notice the trigger
  • Breath.
  • Feel into the body and into yourself and begin to notice what is happening (heat in the body, a punch in the chest, tensing in abdomen, the urge to fight or flee, the urge to blame, to steep to a level of low, etc.). This creates space and allows you to notice what happens when you become triggered. This places you out of victim and into full awareness and power.
  • Breath, breath, breath
  • Ask your higher self for guidance and simply listen.
  • Obey your higher self.

When the moment is afforded, sit alone in quiet. Repeat the above steps in a meditative posture. Eyes closed allows us to turn out external distraction and navigate more carefully inward. Shed bright light on what is happening within. Every time you do this, the layers begin to peel away. Our stress levels decrease, we become more self-aware, our relationships with others and ourselves improves, our bodies relax, and our hormones begin to balance, our digestion improves, our sleep improves…. must I go on?!

We just don’t know what we don’t know. We cannot change until we become aware. In awareness, we take the power back. We then get to play in this game of life instead of falling victim to its every turn.

In peace, love, light and flexible strength, I love you.

Lessons In Hunter’s Full Moon

We just had another magnificent full moon! Did you get a chance to bath in its light?! This past full moon (October 24th, 2018) and all full moons nonetheless, offer us a great opportunity to reflect on where we have been, where we are currently and where we are going. On top of that, is our path of trajectory in alignment with our higher selves and where we wantto go?! We are each the creators of our own worlds, our own realities. However, we must aim and shoot with our eyes OPEN!

For a long time, most of my life, I took aim, and then RAN super-fastwith my eyes closed. I thought that going quickly, looking and acting busy would get me somewhere. I might get off course, but at least I was moving forward. Right?!

No so much. With my eyes closed I was playing victim. I was avoiding, and I was losing out on SO MUCH! When we open our eyes and wake up, take our time and take it all in, we get to experience all the beauty that is in the present moment as well as the opportunity to witness all of the necessary challenges that naturally arise. In my experience, you can either slow down, eyes wide open in experience of it ALL as you go, consciously embracing, learning, growing, feeling into each sucky and magical and neutral moment OR you can close your eyes, run and most likely crash! Only then to open your eyes and wonder what the hell happened?! Why do I feel so bad! Who did this to me?

It’s funny, but not so much.

As the seasons are changing, we enter fall. The flowers that once bloomed shed their pollen, the trees begin to change colors and leaves begin to fall. Last night’s full moon was an amazing opportunity to take stock of what has bloomed for me. Where and what do I want to let go of, to let fall away so that I can begin to rest in the stillness of winter, of what is to come? With the choice to open our eyes fully to what is, we get to reevaluate, aim and take fire.

Last night, I released several things. One being the illusion that I had continued to place myself under that began something along the lines of, “not you; what makes you think this job is for you?” As I move forward in full knowing that this is indeed my job, I feel lighter, more free more available to share truth. The most amazing part of this truth is that it has always been inside of me. Through intentional release and letting go, I am able to stand in full light and say, “This is me and I am here to share the truth of love!”

What are you letting go of right now in order to stand fully in your own light?

Should You Be Taking An Omega Supplement

Omega supplementation is “all the rage” these days! Why are more people turning to omega? In addition, Should you be taking an Omega supplement? I will highlight these two very important questions and offer advice if you seek an omega supplement to compliment your diet. So, let’s dive in!

Every cell of our body contains a”Lipid bilayer”, which is a fatty layer, requiring both EHA and DHA.   Both of these fatty acids are found in omega supplementation, fatty fish and fish oils. They are also known to play an important role in heart and brain health in addition to overall human development. Because most people do not eat enough fish and/or fish oil to meet the EHA and DHA demand of our bodies, an omega supplement is an important addition to any diet. ALA is another essential fatty acid that our body can convert into DHA and EHA and is found in food sources, such as walnuts, flaxseeds, chia seeds, canola oil, soybeans and soybean oil. However, as a result of our Western diet which is lacking in many essential minerals and nutrients including chromium, selenium and magnesium, it becomes difficult for the body to convert ALA to DHA and EHA.

Research shows that those with depression and mild cases of memory loss benefit from taking omega 3 fatty acid supplementation. I recommend that all my clients, especially those who experience depression and memory loss, choose an Omega 3 supplement.  For some, the results have been dramatic. Research also suggests that children of mothers whom consume an omega supplement while pregnant test higher on intelligence in early childhood. Omega 3 fatty acids are essential for overall brain health throughout one’s life.

What to choose?

If you decide to add in an Omega supplement to your diet, I highly recommend you do your research and find a non-fish-based omega. Sourcing fish from our oceans in an unsustainable practice, as our oceans are becoming overfished and polluted. Fish do not produce Omegas! Algae and plants do! Going right to the source allows you to help preserve our oceans biodiversity as well as eliminate the toxic buildup in your body.

Secondly, most omega supplements undergo a heat process during encapsulation. These heat and light process’ are very damaging and can cause your oil to become rancid. Look for a cold pressed option where as the essential enzymes have not been compromised.

Lastly, be sure to clean up your diet! Without a proper diet based around nature (I am talking fruits and veggies here), no omega supplement will be as beneficial. Enjoy

I’d love to hear from you. Do you take an Omega supplement? If so, what are some things you look for when picking out which you will add into your diet?

 

5 Ways To Self-Validate

It’s a humbling moment when I realize that I look to others to validate all that I am. A long history of looking inward allows me to see, that just like so many humans that roam the planet, my heart had been broken as a child. A certain set of circumstances growing up led me to reach out so strongly with all of my being in an effort to be seen, to be heard and for the pain I was experiencing in my mind and in my heart to be acknowledged. This pattern of needing validation of others was never broken, but I learned to hide it well as an adult and make it more socially acceptable. However, the deep desire to be validated remains. I know now that the validation I seek, can only be found from that of validating myself. Validation from others is fast burning. It fuels me for a moment and then that empty feeling returns. Although this may all stem from something in the past (something we may not even to able to place a finger on), it is vital that we, I, take 100% responsibility for how I show up and what I bring into this world.

Out of my search for validation and the work I have put in to see myself, I have found 5 ways to whole heartedly accept myself, to self soothe and be my own best friend, mother, father, companion. I share them with you below in an effort to encourage you to become your own best friend. Let the healing begin!

1.) Also known as ‘let it all go’ or word vomit. Depending on my mood, when I find myself feeling stuck I simply allow everything inside of me to pour out into words out loud, on paper or in movement. It’s important to note that I do all of this alone so that I can be as vulgar and authentic in all that I am carrying. I wouldn’t want to scare my husband or my daughter but most of all this is about ME seeing ME- an intimacy (into myself I see) with oneself.

Often, just allowing for whatever comes up shifts my energy and that that I seek is revealed.

2.) Get outside, get moving in nature! Even just opening up a window to let the fresh air and light in makes a huge difference! Nature has a magical way!

3.) Take inventory on what you are grateful for in yourself. Although you can go through all the things that you love about yourself mentally, it is always more powerful to get it down on paper. Again, meet yourself where you are and do what feels right in the moment. Recall that taking time for self-care and recognizing all the things you love about yourself is something to acknowledge in itself!

Consider a “WIN” journal. Every night before your head it’s the pillow, jot down all of your wins, big and small. Somedays this might be nailing a big presentation, others you were just able to brush your teeth!

4.) Take some time to sit quietly with yourself. Allow your heart to be heard. What I find often lies in my heart, is exactly what I need to hear and feel to know I am loved, valued and acknowledged. We have the ability to heal ourselves, but we must be willing to listen.

5.) With your eyes closed, imagine an older, wiser version of yourself nurturing you as you are now. This works wonders if you are willing to accept that time is not simply linear, but it is a moment to moment experience. The wise within you isn’t in the future out there, somewhere not be accessed until later on- it is in this moment if you would like it to be.

I’ve also recorded this meditation that you can check out on healing and self-validating. https://soundcloud.com/user-462525469/love-and-light-healing-2

In closing, if you ever need extra support or guidance, I am here!

Lots of love and light on your path friends.

XO

Gut Health Directly Related To Brain Health

Antidepressant use among Americans is skyrocketing. Adults in the U.S. consumed four times more antidepressants in the late 2000s than they did in the early 1990s. As the third most frequently taken medication in the U.S., researchers estimate that 8 to 10 percent of the population is taking an antidepressant.

Our guts are our second brain helping to regulate emotions and hormones. When the environment in the gut is restored to optimal health, we can begin to experience less symptoms of depression, anxiety and mood swings.

Feeding your gut the food that will allow it to flourish instead of just scrape by is essential to living a full, happy and healthy life. Foods that support and restore gut health include all the natural plants that you can buy at your local farmers market or grocery store. When we cut out the processed, packaged and refined foods and begin to eat closer to what nature intended for us, we begin to feed the good bacteria in our guts.

Optimal weight, clear skin, improved digestion, less fatigue, reduced inflammation and optimal brain function are all symptoms of a restored gut. Feeding the “good guys” allows them to thrive in our guts and our bodies begin to crave more fruits and veggies. This positive feedback loop works for you in a way that will support you in every area of your life.

You can begin adding in more raw plants to your diet right now! Here is a simple recipe for an anytime smoothie packed with plants that will allow you begin adding more gut loving foods into your diet.

INGREDIENTS

1 small banana, frozen
1/2 cup pineapple
1 handful kale or spinach
1/4 avocado
1 tsp chia seeds
2 tbsp plant-based protein powder (optional)
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup almond milk

INSTRUCTIONS

Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth. Pour into a glass and enjoy!

What are some of your favorite fruit and veggie smoothies?

 

The Art Of Journaling

Writing has been one of those things that has saved my life. I remember sitting to journal as a young girl in my bedroom with huge knots in my stomach, signs of anger shattered and strewed across the floor, heavy in my heart, and confusion in my head. Like so many of us, I come from a home of dis-ease; of domestic disputes, conditional love, illness, broken hearts, brick walls and lost connections. I found comfort in my journal. I felt that somehow, someone would share the load with us and ease the chaos, the pain. Letting it all out on paper helped me get through.

 

As I aged, my coping mechanisms changed. I still found my way back to journaling, but not as frequently as before. I learned to hide behind a veil and bottle it all up. I convinced myself that everything was fine, that I was doing great and it was time to move on. I was ‘happy’. Which meant, no need to write. After all, I was only inspired to write when shit was bad enough. I had moved away from home, to a new town, made new friends and pushed the past away; deep down- ‘I’m good’, I thought.

 

The fog got thick for a while and then I became conscious once again. I realized, what I was doing wasn’t quite working of me. VERY slowly, I began to pick up the pen and put it to paper once again. To find clarity through the chaos was not my mission, but has most definitely been the fruits I have enjoyed from this art.

 

I now sit, every day, as a commitment to honoring my depth, to let out whatever it is that is there and ready to be revealed. Somedays, my mind is too busy, my masculine, “get shit done”, is too strong to dig deep.  But most others, I am tuned in to my depth, connected to mother earth and the feminine energy that keeps me present and soft- this is where the healing begins. This is where much of the clarity surfaces and not only do I feel alive again, but whole and complete as is.