Category Archives: Mindfulness

Choose Your Words Mindfully

Words spoken, thought or written have the power to transform the world and our lives.  Every aspect of life is impacted by words.  The emotion we inspire with words can either heal or hinder.

Life is ever evolving and as we move forward we evolve with it.  There are times when we have simple answers to questions and at other times the answer to a question may not be that simple.  When we go through a crisis in life we often times reflect and question why we go through struggles or situations that are taxing.
The important thing to keep in mind is how we react and handle the situation.  It is so easy to stay to someone, “You’ll be okay or everything will be alright.”  Will they?  In many instances it is not easy for the person going through the experience to see or accept positive words.

What we as caregivers and healers should keep in mind is that it may not be the words that are the problem, but the tone in which they are spoken.  If we are mindful, we will focus on the person going through a rough patch and be a good listener first and then respond with compassion and gentleness of words that reflect genuine heartfelt meaning that does not come off as cliché.  Some healing words to share and assist a friend, client or love one may include alive, beaming, complete, courageous, dazzling, divine, enthusiastic, flourish, freedom, glow, healed, heart, lively, miracle, motivate, natural, nourished, refresh, relax, restore, serenity, shine, strong, sustain, thrive, transform, upbeat, vibrant, well, whole, and wondrous.  This list by far is not complete, but feel to use your creativity and place these words and others into sentences that may help someone going through a life changing event or circumstance can bring peace and harmony that soothes.
When I reflect on the words I chose to comfort myself and others, I am reminded of a scripture in Proverbs 12:18 ESV “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.”  I once heard that a word is like a “living organism.”  This really gave me pause to look at words in a new way.   To the left here is another moving Proverbs scripture.

Words have the capability to grow, change, influence and spread.  Wow, words have a way to directly and indirectly affecting everyone we cross paths with.  I now seek to find words to incite and connect in a positive way and wish to share this with you today.  Family and friends often forget that they are also caregivers and their words are powerful and the person spoken too is receiving what they deliver and how it is delivered.  So, my message for today is to be mindful of our words and tone in wholeness and when assisting a loved one through a rough patch, let love come from the heart with the words spoken and/or expressed.

Language to inspire others is at its best when delivered with respect and compassion.  I invite you to share in spreading positive words as part of your daily life, whether it be with affirmations, quotes or simply sharing in general conversations.  Let’s heal the world today one word at a time.
Guest Author: Schenelle Johnson has a long history of providing services to help members of her community and brings keen insight, deep and compassionate support to her sessions and groups. Schenelle received certification from Recovery Innovations of California (RICA), which provided a high degree of educational and supportive services for those experiencing issues with mental health and/or addictions.  Her holistical education in alternative healing arts are a result of her extensive studies and hands on training from Southwestern Institute of Healing Arts in Phoenix, Arizona, as a Mind, Body Wellness Practitioner.  Schenelle has an intuitive nature and a gift for being a great listener and establishes a great rapport, quickly and easily with people she meets.  She enjoys helping other people to discover awareness and go after their dreams and to acknowledge their own unique greatness.   Today, she is living her dreams.  If you are ready to live yours, she would love to assist you transform from within and live an abundant life. Mission: Helping others reach long-term healthier lifestyle changes that impact their lives today and in the future.

Summer Holiday Tips For Healthy Eating

Summertime is finally upon us!  Holiday Eating can be a major threat for Weight Management and the 4th of July is no exception.  Beat the heat with smart servings and remain mindful of your sugar intake while enjoying all of the fireworks and festivities.  It is important to be cognizant of what is being consumed; however don’t obsess about it or let in run your mind rampant.  Be in the moment and enjoy the laughter in the summer breeze…. Here are four profound tips for sensible eating while celebrating with family and friends this year!

Summer Holiday Eating Tip #1
If grilling meat, eliminate store bought barbecue sauce and try using different rubs such as jerk seasoning, lemon/garlic/pepper or make a marinade using fresh herbs and, Tabasco and vinegar.  Why consider this?  There are about 70 calories in 2 tablespoons of barbecue sauce.  By eating a few pieces of poultry or other meat drenched in barbecue sauce the calorie count could add up to over 300!  Use fresh, organic citruses and experiment with some fun rubs and sauces this summer!

Summer Holiday Eating Tip #2
Reduce your calorie consumption by forgoing the typical sides of potato salad and macaroni and cheese.  Instead, introduce a variety of vegetables to the menu.  Vegetables such as corn on the cob, different types of peppers, asparagus, zucchini and broccoli, are great on the grill.  Add a green leafy salad with olive oil and vinegar to make the menu colorful and healthy.  Why consider this?  The average plate at a barbecue is 2,000 calories (3 pieces of chicken with sauce, potato salad, macaroni and cheese, corn on the cob, chips, bread, etc.) and most people consume more than 1 full plate in a day.  YIKES!

Summer Holiday Eating Tip #3
If guests want something to drink with a little punch, make a pitcher of berry and citrus spritzer using strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries mixed with a dry rose wine, seltzer, and slices of oranges and limes for a good fruity drink that is also packed full of nutrients.  This is a great substitute for hard alcoholic beverages that could add up in calories when mixed with sodas, juices or mixes.  Why consider this?  There are about 70 calories in an ounce of hard liquor (vodka, cognac).  By mixing 3 ounces of hard liquor with 4 ounces of cranberry juice, or the like, you’re looking at about 270 calories in just 1 small mixed drink.  Drink responsibly!

Summer Holiday Eating Tip #4
Add physical activities, games and sports into the holiday planning.  Grab the balls for a friendly competitive game of baseball, basketball or soccer.  Get everyone up for a tug of war, losers have to clean up.  Consider a scavenger hunt at a local park or nature trail that allows everyone to breathe in some fresh air while connecting with mother Earth.  DANCE to some festive music and let your body get loose…. Why consider this?  The best way to burn off calories is to get up, get out and get moving.  Exercise does the mind, body and spirit good.

By making healthy eating a conscious choice s,especially during the holidays, this can and will lead to healthier lifestyle traditions that can be passed down to future generations.  May the 4th Be With You!  😉 
Guest Author: Lena Kelly is a transformational life coach and motivational speaker. She has been helping others find their voice and pursue their passion by encouraging them to step boldly into the life they deserve.  By providing one on one coaching, support groups and motivational workshops, she has witnessed and been the catalyst for some of the most amazing life transformations among women of all ages and walks of life. With her compassionate spirit, positive energy and attentive listening, she provides an environment for openness and personal growth without judgment. Lena is the founder of Empowerment House for Women, where she and her daughters host workshops, seminars, retreats, wellness training and promote holistic living.  Her workshops “Step Into Your Greatness” and “Kick Your Bucket List Into Action” uses vision boards, goal setting, self empowerment tools, and retreats to help women address their fears, heal the past, and unleash their power to fulfill their dreams. These interactive workshops, seminars, and retreats are informative, fun and promote camaraderie among the participants.  |

As Within So Without

Meditation, it’s not as crunchy granola as some make it out to be. Twenty minutes a day could provide a catharsis for those seeking an escape from the daily grind. These days most people hurry through life by cramming countless tasks into a 24-hour day. The effects of living in such a hurried, and filled to the brim manner, makes many things that ought to be savored, quite blurry. The beauty of the sky, trees, birds, people, and countless other treasures, increasingly just pass by. Although it cannot add hours to the day, meditation can slow a person down. An individual that meditates possesses an intrinsic awareness that has the capability to recognize, acknowledge and appreciate details that non-meditators are unable to see. For individuals who practice meditation regularly, the trees and flowers appear more vibrant, the perception of others expressions are more defined, reactions are more controlled, and patience is gained. These are just a few of the perks of meditation.
The practice of meditation sounds agonizing for some people; sitting for twenty minutes doing and thinking nothing. Here’s a secret, even the most experienced meditators have thoughts during their meditation. It is in the space between thoughts, that meditation occurs. Those spaces get longer and longer, with practice. Using a mantra, a word or phrase that is calming to the meditator, can help. Some examples are “be still”, “serenity”, “peace”, “thy will be done”, or “love”. Whenever a thought arises during meditation, a mantra is silently or verbally said, bringing the meditator back to awareness. For most people, nothing extraordinary actually happens during meditation. Most likely fireworks will not occur, the Virgin Mary will not appear and give a personal message, nor will a psychedelic experience be reported. It can be compared to the daily practice of brushing one’s teeth; it is something that has to be done, the experience itself is not one that yields excitement, yet the benefits are substantial over time. In other words, it is the time after meditation, that the benefits are reaped.

The top 10 rewards of meditation are:

  • Less Stress
  • Physical benefits (lower blood pressure, more energy)
  • Decreased anxiety (Anxiety can be defined as waiting for something to happen)
  • Living with more intention and purpose
  • Keener sensory details (such as colors, smells, sounds etc.)
  • Becoming more empathetic
  • Increased intuition
  • Awareness of synchronicities
  • Inner calm that radiates
  • Emotions are balanced and controlled

It doesn’t take a life overhaul to start practicing meditation; it takes undisturbed twenty minutes a day, a pillow to sit on and soft instrumental music (if desired). The best time to meditate is first thing in the morning, this allows the benefits of meditation to orchestrate the unfolding day. As Confucius said “As within, so without”, the state of our being that is inside, mirrors the life that we have on the outside. So if we are calm and centered on the inside, our life and the circumstances surrounding us, reflect that. If we are anxious, hurried and unsettled, our life will also reflect that. For spiritual seekers, it is said that prayer is talking to God (or whatever higher power an individual believes in), which would make prayer a one way conversation. Meditation is the preparation to listen to God/ higher power. The awareness cultivated from meditation, allows spiritual seekers to “hear, see, feel etc.” messages from God/ or higher power that most likely would be missed without meditation.

It is said that if everyone on earth meditated for 5 minutes, we would have world peace. World peace begins with individuals, not with the whole population. Having peace within from meditation is as powerful as having world peace, just on a smaller scale.
Guest Author:   Pamela Fowler is a student of the Mind, Body, Wellness practitioner program at SWIHA as well as a seasoned registered nurse, working primarily with patients diagnosed with cancer. She is from Germany originally, but calls Phoenix home, where she lives with her 2 children and fiancé. Pamela experienced a major catharsis about seven years ago; while searching for meaning and understanding of a turn of events that blindsided her to her rock bottom, meditation was introduced to her by her mentor. As she remained dedicated to meditation, synchronicity pummeled her everywhere she turned. She has made it her mission to teach others how to tune into their own synchronicities, and it is through SWIHA’s curriculum that her mission will be accomplished.

Finding Spirit in the Modern World

Countless people go through their daily routines without a connection to Spirit.  Spirit is an important part of holistic health; it is also one that is missing in many people’s lives.  Some individuals rush through their days, always saying tomorrow, or next week is when they will get to the things they enjoy doing.  Many allow the busyness that is the modern way of life to consume them.  They rush their children by saying, “come on hurry up, we don’t have time for that,” or “no honey I don’t have time to play, I have to work” and “gosh I am going to be late there isn’t enough time in the day.”
Yet everyone is given the same amount of time in a day, 24 hours, to work, play, love, and find Spirit.  Some are lucky in that their work or play fills what their Spirit needs to stay healthy.  Today, most people are focused on making and spending money more so than filling their Spirit or finding it.  They seek a magic pill to fix them when they are unsure of what is wrong.  Sometimes they try to fill this void that should be their spirit with caffeine, drugs, alcohol, energy drinks, the internet, sex and staying busy all the time.  They say they don’t have time to find that hobby, read that book or take that walk in nature.  They work a job because it pays the bills and not because it fills their Spirit.

Finding Spirit isn’t hard, and it doesn’t take a lot of time to be honest.  Finding Spirit can and will make people happier and healthier.  It takes work but it can be done.  Below are some things one can do to find Spirit in their life.

  • Slow down – stop rushing; look at your schedule and ask what is important and must be done today, what can wait, and what you can ask someone else to  do.  Can your husband pick up the dry cleaning today and save you five minutes?  Do the kids really need to be in so many activities that you don’t have dinner as a family?  Who are you rushing for; is it for yourself or others?
  • Take a walk during your lunch break; it’s your time – use it.  Connect to nature; if a walk is not something you can’t do, journal, read a book, meditate, pray, or just BE.  Allow yourself this time to recharge and listen to your Spirit.
  • Look at your job, does it reward you?  Is it what you have always wanted to do or is it to just pay the bills?  Ask yourself is this WHO you are or is it WHAT you do?  If it’s WHAT you do, then WHO are you?  What changes can you make so that you can become WHO you are?
  • Ask yourself what is it you really want and need; do you need that new car every three years?  Do your kids need all the toys in the world when they are not home to enjoy them?
  • Have dinner at the table every night, as a family if you have one.  If you are single and don’t want to eat alone, invite a friend, or a neighbor over to share your meal.  Take the time to connect with them; this will help you find your Spirit.
  • Mediation – make time to just be and still your mind; find guided meditations that you love or just simple, sit down and just BE in the moment.  Just sit there and do not think of anything.  Allow your mind to listen to the Spirit within and what it’s telling you.
  • And probably one of the biggest ones – Learn to say NO!  It’s okay to tell someone you can’t help them or do something for them.  It’s okay to say, “NO I am sorry I can’t do that.”  It’s okay to take time for yourself.  In the end you will find Spirit and become much more AT PEACE.

This list is in no way all inclusive, but you will find that if you even begin to TRY to find yoiu Spirit, that you will start to see things differently, and life will become easier.  Not everything will work for everyone; not everyone can leave and change jobs quickly to fill their Spirit.  However, they can find a few minutes in a day to feed their Spirit be it with music, art, a walk in the woods, or reading a book.  Slow down and enjoy life.  Listen to that voice inside; it’s telling you what you need to hear.  Having everything in life isn’t worth it if you can’t enjoy it.

Guest Author:  Charise Clarke is a spiritual coach, healer, Reiki student, an instrument of the divine, and a student at Southwest Institute of Healing Arts. Her diverse background and life experiences has led her to fulfill her calling of healing and nurturing others, gently guiding each individual in their own unique process in order to achieve their highest potential.  Connect with Charise at