Happy Yule! Time for Introspection

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Baby it’s cold outside and we’re upon the shortest day of the year, known as the Winter Solstice, or by Pagans as Yule. This day marks the point in the year where, from here on out, the days begin to grow and the Sun makes it’s return. The underlying themes of this glorious Pagan holiday are gratitude, introspection, and planning, and that is exactly what we’ll be reflecting on today.

For this exercise, take three pieces of paper out. On the first, list everything you are grateful for from the past year. Then, on the second, take a personal inventory of how much you’ve grown from the beginning of 2017. Write out a timeline and see if you can mark off your personal growth through the months.

Next, as I explained in my email blast, this is where it get’s interesting.

From your growth’s trajectory, I want you to see if you can derive some values from the direction you’ve been heading. Have you been paying more attention to self care? Have you acted more courageously? Have you only kept those that are loyal close to you?

These characteristics are the things that you hold close, and should serve as your guidepost to intentionally move into 2018.

So from here, flip that paper over and write out your goals for 2018, but try to align them with the values you’ve carved out for yourself.

This is just a taste of the kind of work we’ll be doing in my new group program, starting January 2018, Resolve to Revolutionize.  Check it out so you can start your year right, and stay witchy ( *)

ThursdayThinks: Ways to Exercise Boundaries in Business

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Want some tips on how to keep your personal flavor, while maintaining a business savvy?? It’s difficult to be an empath as an entrepreneur, but check out these tips to stay on top of the game!

  • Know your worth and align it in every practice: What do you think you’re ACTUALLY worth? Think about what your practice/ business affords the world, and lead with confidence around it.
  • Know when to cut the dialogue short: If you’re in the middle of being taken advantage of, in whatever the case, get yourself an exit strategy. Know how to identify when people are asking for too much (i.e. to a point of making you uncomfortable) and remember that you are allowed to not participate.
  • Set some ground rules, and don’t break ’em: It’s important to have a policy in place for your business, because when you come from an empathetic place (like I do) you want to do favors for everyone. Policies help set the standard.
  • Consistency is key: Remember when I said “don’t break ’em”? I mean it. To convey consistent policies is the only way to command respect, in your personal life AND your business.
  • Communicate effectively: Let your customers or clients know your policies in a firm manner! This can be hard for empaths, because we are sensitive ourselves, but firm (not rude!) communication is the real winner here.

Practicing these tips is not only going to help you run your business effectively, but it will amp up your energetic flow! This kind of confidence around the worth of your business will bring respectful customers and ideal clients to your doorstep! Practice carefully and stay witchy ( *)

ThursdayThinks: Tips to Enjoy Life and Not Take Shit So Seriously

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Life is full of reasons to keep us down, and we have a tendency to focus on them. But when we do, we don’t take into account all of the reasons why life is a damn party! Enjoying life is the best way to recognize (and then achieve!) abundance. So next time you’re in a rut, use these tips to shake up your routine and make life a parade!

  • Have a dance party in the morning
  • Do something out of your comfort zone (like going to a rooftop pool party in a unicorn floaty!)
  • Sing REALLY loud
  • Walk down the street like it’s a catwalk
  • Make a power party playlist
  • Tell riddles/ jokes to your co-workers
  • Take up a new activity you’ve always wanted to try
  • Get creative with your food!
  • Volunteer at an animal shelter (and pet all the kitties!)
  • Paint or tie dye
  • Pick flowers and wear them in your hair
  • Glitter eyeliner!
  • Make a YouTube channel with a friend
  • Light incense and breathe deeply
  • When you walk down the street, pick a color to find and make a game of it (i.e., how many shades of pink can you find?)

Try these tips to keep life light and exuberant, because it is!!! When you enjoy life’s many pleasures, you raise your vibration, and who doesn’t love that! Party on and stay witchy ( *)

ThursdayThinks: Navigating Family Through the Holidays

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It’s no secret that family knows how to push your buttons. And when they’re all gathered in one place, asking you the same drilling questions or making remarks that are unfair, it could make you want to lash out, drink heavily, or leave.

During this holiday season, use these tips to navigate a family get-together in a peaceful,  copacetic way. It doesn’t have to be a disaster if you’re prepared!

  • Get a buddy- Ok so there’s at least one family member you ADORE right? Make it a point to stick with them, and minimize time with those family members you know will cause a headache.
  • Make yourself useful– Helping out in the kitchen not only makes you look good, but gives you an excuse to busy yourself when you don’t want to answer why you’re not married yet. Being of service to your family while staying out of pressuring conversations is a great way to navigate Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Write a script– If you know there are certain questions coming your way, be prepared with some stock answers so you can be polite, but also not feel overwhelmed.
  • Set boundaries– Following suit, find an exit strategy. When the questions get too drilling and you start to feel bad about yourself, find a way to politely and discreetly exit the conversation with a few things you’ve prepared, like “Oh, there’s Aunt Blanche, I haven’t said hello to her yet!” or “I should really help Dorothy in the kitchen,” or “Rose, I heard you remodeled, would you give me a tour!”
  • Be grateful you have them– This last one is the most important. It’s easy to get annoyed and overwhelmed by family, but the holidays are for being thankful that they exist in the first place. Yes, they might drive you a little nuts, but each one of them has contributed to your life in one way or another, and it would serve you to not only be patient, but grateful.

So, this holiday season, be merry, be prepared, and stay witchy ( *)

 

ThursdayThinks: Bringing Your Shadow to Light

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Shadow Work is work to be done in the murky depths of your soul, but one to be unjudged and untamed as you trudge through the trenches. It is very deep and emotional work, but once you get into it, you’ll see incredible results manifesting in your life!

Essentially, when you find certain behavior distasteful, it is because there is a piece of you that connects with it, and you’ve shunned it into your shadow. Disowning it. And at the most inopportune times, it will show up and wreak havoc.

So in order to tame the shame, we have to show our shadow some compassion. A way to recognize this is by doing the exercise below:

Watch a movie or TV show in which you absolutely hate a character and try to identify with them.

Sit with a piece of paper and make a log of every single behavior you have a reaction to, and try to dissect it.

Why does that face make you annoyed? Why does that response anger you? What is it inside you that reacts to their reaction?

Keep a log of this and try to identify with the negative, and when you’re done with the movie/ show, read your findings aloud. Reading aloud honors them and shows attention.

Read without judgement and acknowledge that this is a part of you.

Then, if you feel so inspired, start an inner dialogue, devoid of judgement, as to when these were cast to the shadows. Understanding your shadow is the best way to heal it.

Happy hunting, and stay witchy ( *)

ThursdayThinks: Words to Romanticize Instead of Tragic

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When I was in my teens I always thought “tragic” was such a glamorous word. There was something about pain that was so beautiful, so comfortable to me. But, reflecting on those years, I see now that it is only because it was the only world I knew. Tragic HAD to be beautiful, because otherwise my foundation would crumble. As a former drug addict, if my addiction couldn’t be seen as “cool,” or my pain as “pretty,” then I’d have to clean up and rebuild.

So, this week’s ThursdayThinks, featuring yet another Oracle Card from my Modern Goddess Oracle Deck (illustrated by @tamalgoth) I’ve decided to list some words that SHOULD be glamorized for those that need it. Feel free to post yours in the comments ❤

  • Strong
  • Tenacious
  • Patient
  • Nurturing
  • Logical
  • Loyal
  • Respectful
  • Encouraging
  • Supportive
  • Ambitious
  • Courageous
  • Motivated
  • Balanced
  • Positive
  • Empathetic

Some of these words might even be your core values, or may inspire you to live fully. Use this list when you feel down and begin to do things that aren’t aligned with your soul, but with tragedy. I implore you, if “tragic” is something you feel akin to, take this list and start looking up, because when the Tower crumbles, new beginnings emerge. Stay witchy, beautiful ones ( *)

 

ThursdayThinks: Samhain Reflection

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Featuring an Oracle Card from the deck I’m working on (very slowly) with @tamalgoth! Samhain, as most of you here know, is the Pagan New Year. It is a time for reflection and intention setting, with the veil of the living and the dead at it’s thinnest. I was in Montreal, the most haunted town in Canada, for this Halloween/ Samhain, and didn’t get much time to reflect until the plane ride home yesterday.

This year has been a lot of learning and boundary setting. Strengthening my boundaries and respect for myself has helped me to grow and learn further. It has helped me to empower myself in ways I couldn’t imagine. And it has also helped me to let go of things that don’t serve me, even if they are emotions in a situation that I cannot change.

Whether it was dating and realizing more of what I need in a man, or switching up side hustles and realizing what is truly important for something that just fills my pockets, there have been a lot of lessons, some down times, some upward bumps, and mainly self reflection and independence.

So, if you haven’t already, I invite you to do some reflections yourself. Start with October 2016, and make a list of each month leading up to this past Samhain. Write a short summary of what happened in each month, and next to it write the lesson.

Did you achieve something? Lose something? Have a rough time? Take a respite? Find the highlights through each month and look for the over arching message within it. If you’re having trouble, you can even pull a card on the message of the month 😉

When we take full inventory of our year, it helps to show us how much we’ve actually grown. We all tend to take for granted our achievements and growth spurts, so take some time for yourself to reflect before setting new intentions for the year to come. Stay grateful, and stay witchy ( *)

ThursdayThinks: Style Your Mind

IMG_4640Cara Alwill Leyba, who was a guest recently on my podcast, has a brand centered around the concept “Style Your Mind.” With a book and a podcast under this name, it got me thinking exactly what styling MY mind means to me.

So, on Monday we spoke about rerouting yourself to positivity over negativity, and I think that can be done with your own style/ identity. Which brings me to this weeks exercise, on creating a stylishly YOU avatar as a reference.

My style changes all the time, because I am constantly evolving. Sometimes I want to dress like Mama Ru in day drag and take selfies in bathroom mirrors. And sometimes I want to wear long flowing black dresses and sing Stevie Nicks under naked trees. But what stays the same for the longest is who I really want to show up as at my core.

So for this weeks exercise, I want you to create an avatar of exactly what YOUR style is and how to honor that with your  mindset.

What do I mean by this?

Let’s start superficially. What does your ideal you look like? What does she wear? Is her hair pulled back taut and strong, or free flowing and long? What is her first impression?

Next, what does your ideal you sound like? Does she have a strong voice? Does she ask questions? Does she sit back and observe? What is her presence??

Next, what does she do? Does she have a kick ass career? Is she an artist? Is she both? Does she play in the park? Does she drink daytime champagne? What is she all about?

And lastly, what is her thought process? Is she super ambitious? Or is she a self care queen? Is she in the middle? Does she honor all of her thoughts equally? Or does she have down days where she needs to recover? Does she speak 7 languages? Is she a taxidermy expert? What goes on in her brain??

When you do this exercise, you’re going to carve out someone to use as a benchmark that is uniquely your idol. There is no perfection. There is only perfectly YOU. And when you have a day where you feel lost, or when you feel out of control, you can say, “What would avatar Shawn do in this instance?”

Its a fun exercise, and you can even make a symbol for her and write her everywhere as a reminder. Get creative, dream big, and stay witchy ( *)

ThursdayThinks: Separating Fantasy from Reality (a Checklist)

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Going along with Monday’s theme of separating reality from your beliefs, I thought I’d create a checklist of questions to ask yourself when faced with such a dilemma. How do you know when you’re seeing things as they are, or merely dancing with the proverbial pink elephant?

It’s helpful to do a line of investigation when anxiety builds. Am I anxious because of the actual situation? Or because of a set of beliefs I’ve built AROUND the situation? Follow these questions the next time you’re faced with that unsavory anxiety and see if it doesn’t shed some light on your feelings around it. Let’s take going on a job interview, for example:

Ok, so you’re nervous about your big interview. So nervous that it might get in the way of success, which makes you MORE nervous! What do you do?

What does it mean if things don’t go exactly as I planned?

Have you put more pressure on this situation than necessary? Do you think it will define your character in any way if you don’t get the job? Are you worried about what your friends and family may think, rather than being focused on how you truly want to show up?

Are these beliefs ego serving in any way?

Does the word “failure” come up? Is it mostly negative-focused? Have your friends and family misjudged you before? Are you judging yourself for fear of landing outside of “perfect?”

Ideally, HOW do I want to show up?

Is it anxious and fidgety? Or calm, cool, and collected? Is it bubbly and confident? Or shy and quiet? What is the ultimate personality that needs to be displayed?

What is not serving me in this moment to perform my best and how do I let it go?

Are my previous beliefs creating an anxious environment? What affirmations can I say to cool me down? Do I have a second to meditate, or list off things I’m grateful for? Can I surrender the things that are simply out of my control?

Just performing a simple line of questioning can knock you back into reality. And if your anxiety is REALLY bad, you can always do some rounds of tapping to help open you up and put you back in a grounded state. At the end of the day, the negative self talk and damaging beliefs are merely a form of self sabotage. So how do you stop it? Well, YOU stop it!

You have complete and utter control over what your head says to you. Make it a safe haven. A sacred place. Stay calm, and stay witchy ( *)

 

 

 

ThursdayThinks: Three Ways to Live With Intention TODAY 

Living with intention is such a powerful act, but goes overlooked all the time. When our schedules change, when we’re stressed, in fact, unless everything is going perfectly, living intentionally can get pushed to the wayside.
It’s easy to meditate every morning and act with purpose when we have money in the bank, a schedule that works for us, and a roof over our head. But it’s when times are tough that living with intention is more essential than ever. Here are three ways you can inject purpose into your everyday RIGHT FRIGGIN NOW.

Wake up with a mission:

  • I like to start the mornings with a goal if I feel like I’m spiraling. In program they say “One day at a time,” and it works. Sectioning things off into a day, a minute, a second, or a task, helps things to feel less overwhelming. For example, this morning I woke up and said, “I’m going to move my body today in a way that feels good.” Because I haven’t been working out lately and have been eating crap food, I’ve gained some weight. So, by starting with something small and intentional, I can focus on how I can move my body like a Goddess all day. When we don’t pay attention, we can stomp around unknowingly, not appreciating our knees and toes for what they provide for us everyday. This mission helps to redirect the thought and insert gratitude as well.

Create an alter and pray to it:

  • In whatever capacity that means to you. I have my first success alter pictured above, with a Mojo candle by the very talented Haus of Hoodoo, and by placing things around it that scream “Success!” I have intentionally honored what it means to be successful. I wrote out a years worth of checks to myself, placed a big piece of Citrine and Fluorite around the candle, wrote myself my dream testimonial of a satisfied client (which actually manifested!) and spoke to it everyday. I acknowledged the power and meaning behind success, and building a relationship with it helped to keep the idea of “living successfully” exist in the forefront of my mind. Can you say manifestation?!

Be present:

  • This one is a little more difficult, especially if you’ve never meditated, but it is POWERFUL. I endorse this fully, in particular if you are at a job you hate, commuting in traffic, or living in a space that is uncomfortable. When you are in the uncomfortable situation, instead of fighting it, be intentionally present. Understand that this, as all things, is fleeting, and go through the motions INTENTIONALLY making the best of the situation. When you are present, instead of complaining, you can find positive solutions to make the unbearable, well, bearable. So, you hate the job, but you need it for money in the short term, right? Go in, do the job to the best of your ability (because the opposite will almost always count against you) and look for the things that make you happy there. Even if it’s just one co-worker, or the fact that you can decorate your desk, focus on what makes you happy and be PRESENT. Traffic? Take the time to listen to a podcast, some awesome music, or learn a language! Maximize that time! Living in an uncomfortable space? Well, do your best to make it comfy! Messy roommate? Have the conversation. Too little space? Get creative and decorate around the issue! There are a multitude of ways that being present can present creative solutions. Living in the muck, finding out what actually makes you unhappy and why, and being grateful for the ability to solve it will work WONDERS for your life!

Living intentionally can be done in a variety of ways, and can be super fun! But it takes dedication to do it. Once you see the way your life changes after sticking to purposeful living, you’ll never want to turn back! But remember, it’s an easy practice to forget when things aren’t going great, so remind yourself of this tool and stay witchy ( *)