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Category Archives: stay centered
Finding Your Inner Zen
photo ~ Leigha Hodnet Eat ~ Pray ~ Swim
Earlier this week when I got out of bed and checked my phone, there were nearly 25 messages glaring back at me. Before my morning coffee I began to scroll and read the frantic texts. So much drama of a big fire that had broken out earlier that morning.
Wow, here we go again, I thought.
Moments later, as I sipped my coffee I stared at my computer trying to get a read on what was going on. There were so many dramatic images of the fires with the LA Times talking about 80 mile per hour hurricane winds for the next few days. All this first thing in the morning started to unnerve me. Looking up, I heard the trees rustling in such a way that I realized that one tiny ember from the fire could be quite problematic. I live in the Santa Monica mountains and there were two fires not too far from me.
“Damn, this is getting intense,” I said to myself.
What a coincidence, earlier in the week, I had booked a room in desert hot springs, so I proceeded to pack for my two day adventure. I thought, maybe it’s best to be safe and grab some stuff just in case I can’t get back in. After all, the year before when we were evacuated we couldn’t get back into the canyon for a week.
It was stressful as I rushed around with the sheriff’s department calling on the phone to tell us to start evacuating. One group text was discussing where the fires were and which roads were open and which ones were closed. When someone said, ‘zero containment of the Getty Fire’ my nerves were completely on edge.
Just about then my mind flickered back to a conversation I had with a friend over a year ago, that lost her home due to a fire. I remembered asking if she grabbed all her personal documents when she was being evacuated. “No,” she said. “But why not?” I asked. “I didn’t think my house was going to burn down,” she said, in a solemn tone.
Moments later I was packing my car with valuables documents, clothes but the most important possession of them all, was my precious dog, Violet. It’s interesting when faced with evacuation how much stuff you have that is not relevant at all.
As I drove down the canyon my stomach was in knots and I realized I was hungry, so I stopped in the local café to order some toast and juice. The mountain community where I live always rallies together in times of stress, so I talked to the locals about which road was best to take out to avoid the extreme traffic.
Once back on the road, I drove, until finally I made it out of the canyon. I tried to relax by using my breath to move through my anxiety, but I found it almost impossible to calm my mind. The what-if this, or what if that happens consumed my thoughts all morning long. I realized it was hard to find that inner Zen when you’re swimming in a pool of stress. With so much fear in the air grounding yourself seems light years away. And as an empath, I found it impossible to find my own center.
While I’m driving on the freeway the only thing I had was this breathing technique, so I used all of my concentration to pull my mind back in. With complete focus, I pulled my thoughts, feelings and emotions back to the moment. As I did this, I felt my muscles begin to relax as my mind came back to my body. All of the sudden, a peace washed over me as this presence filled my entire being.
Then I had a realization, geez, this would actually be perfect content to write about in my blog. I mean, after all, isn’t it in these challenging times when people need support to navigate their uncertainty.
Thankfully, I arrived at the hot springs unscathed, and immediately submerged myself in the warm waters of the pool. As I let my body sink into this surrender, I was filled with a profound gratitude. The only real peace it seems comes when you are able to tap into the Inner Zen that lies within.
“Each session with Shari has shifted my life. Some more than others but always in some way I come out feeling weightless, recharged, and in love with the world. Suddenly I can see with total clarity the gifts and possibilities of my own life. No two sessions have ever been the same because Shari meets you where you are, and works to free you from your burdens and blocks. Best of all, if you study with her for as long as I have, she gives you the skills and insight to do this work on your own. Her healing is always with me, and I carry it as a ray of clean white light I can visit anytime deep in my spirit. She will change your life, if you’re ready to work alongside her.” ~ Margaret Wappler
~ Create time to connect to your spirit ~
While I was having lunch with friends the other day someone asked, if I thought things were getting worse on the planet.
I paused briefly before I answered. “It’s clearly more hectic with all the inflated egos, and I think everyone is starting to feel the anger that is rising to the surface.”
Some people say that the planet is going through a cleanse. While that may be true, it’s not just any cleanse were talking about here.
Each day I grow more concerned for the animals, the oceans and all of nature. As people are piled on top of each other in over-crowded cities, the rural areas are being destroyed. And if you’re paying attention there always seems to be some drama unfolding on the news. I believe the ongoing media frenzy is used as a way to distract us from what’s really going on underneath. However, I stay away from posting my opinions about conspiracies and political issues because when you say something about that, you can make yourself a target for the countless trolls that are just waiting to pounce.
What I will say here, it is extremely important to stay grounded so you don’t get knocked off your beam. But how can you stay physically, mentally and spiritually well in such challenging times as these?
Usually, when someone comes to see me for counsel or a healing it is because they are out of alignment. Many times these individuals have become so distracted with everything that they want to accomplish in their lives that they have lost their spiritual connection.
In some of my other blogs, I’ve mentioned how important it is to keep our frequency high. The most important way that I stay grounded is to connect with Mother Earth. Meditation is also key and just by doing deep breathing it can allow the equilibrium to balance itself out. Remaining humble is crucial so we don’t get snagged by our egos which can take us places we don’t need to go.
When we think of spirituality we can often think of white robes, candles and hushed voices, however, it can be even more simpler than that. For me, it’s about being whole. A huge challenge these days in a world that is constantly trying to fragment and distract us.
So, in this day and age it’s even more important to be mindful and have clear intentions of what your priorities are. It’s good to be asking ourselves questions like, how can I keep my mind and body in optimum health? How can I create a lifestyle that isn’t driven by fear, greed or lack? How can I stay balanced when chaos seems to be going on all around me?
I strongly believe the answer is to connect deeply to our soul that resides within. So, if we can take a moment each day to go beyond the mind and listen to our inner voice, that is the place where our true center resides.