I am an avid reader, always have been. I feel life long learning is the key to staying young. One book that had a profound effect on me was The 4 Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferris. He taught a radical concept of living the life of your dreams, however, as good as the concept was, I had never been witness to anyone who was enjoying the freedom he spoke about. With that said, I made it my intention back in 2008 to one day live like he did; happy and carefree.

I wish I could tell you that I snapped my fingers and voila!  It would take a radical change in my thought process to accept that I could create any life I wanted. I had to end negative patterns that no longer served me, I had to believe that I was worthy of such magnificence, and I had to learn to accept help and guidance from both the seen and unseen. In other words, I had to be in “receiving mode”.

I have certainly had my share of life’s challenges, ups and downs but since setting my intentions (planting my seeds) I have managed to create a thriving business, attract the most amazing husband, travel to wonderful places, and live in the house of my dreams. In other words, everything I put on my vision board so long ago, has come to fruition.  

One of the biggest challenges of my entire life was getting a hold of my health, and losing the extra 40+ lbs I had been carrying around for the last couple of decades. It was the last frontier! When I finally made up my mind to start a health journey last summer, the weight came off pretty effortlessly. Many of you followed my journey on Youtube and on our FB page. I ate nothing but raw juice for 60 days, and I never felt better in my entire life; energy and vitality flowed from every pore.

In short, I became reborn.

But it’s not about just the juice. I know this because I have been drinking juices on and off since 2010, and although there were short term success, nothing was ever sustainable. You may wonder why it stuck this time…what I did differently…so I am going to share the secret to how I now live the life of my dreams.

Juicing (or whatever sensible way you chose to be healthy) is only one part of the equation. Another part of the equation is loving yourself unconditionally as you are, right now because you cannot change a body you hate. You see your cells are always listening to you. Your words are programming them for either health or disease. This is true of weight and of aging in general. Those women I know who are always referring to themselves as “old”, “over-the-hill”, etc. generally tend to look old and tired.

Once I grasped that concept, I felt remorseful for speaking to myself so negatively for pretty much my entire life. After all, I wouldn’t speak to a little child like that. So, I began to sing my own praises (whether I believed it or not). Admittedly, it was very awkward at first, but in less than a year since adopting my new “love language”, it’s now a normal part of my routine. My mantra is “I am loved, cherished and adored. I am healthy, strong and beautiful”. I say that every morning before my feet hit the bed, and every night before I fall asleep and these days, I believe it!

Another thing that I consciously changed was the negative chatter around me, whether it be from friends, family or the media (and that includes social media and TV). I removed all of it from my life. I put a love bubble around me and have not let anyone or anything burst it.

I noticed last year that social media in particular was really effecting me. I am very perceptive to energy and vibration and it seemed the entire world was at war. I was being constantly bombarded by what people hated. I started to dread every time I opened Facebook. I gave everything the clip for my own sanity. Not to say I completely deleted every social media app, but I did remove them from my phone and took back my time.

This can be challenging as a business owner, not to be tied to your phone or social media 24/7, but I believe in quality over quantity and when I’m happier, I believe that vibration carries over into the product making process.

Getting quiet (by removing the negative chatter) enables you to truly listen to what your body is telling you. Without being influenced by the outside world, you start to hear yourself more clearly. My body was telling me that it wanted to have more fun.

Hmm. More fun. I wasn’t sure what that meant, so I tried a lot of things. Things that got me out of my comfort zone, things that I never thought I’d enjoy and as a result I’ve never laughed or smiled so much in my life!

For example, exercise was always viewed as a chore, something that had to be done in order to conform my body. I dreaded the gym. Now my exercise is doing the hula hoop while I listen music, dancing while I clean the house, and sweating my butt off while gardening. It never feels boring. I actually smile when I’m doing these activities.

The final piece of the equation is to find your tribe. Surround yourself with like-minded people who support your dreams. Sometimes this means making new friends. Find people that uplift and inspire you, make you laugh, and dare you to dream big!

One of the things I’ve done this year is to visit many of my good friends scattered across the country. My fellow dreamers if you will. Some of these people I haven’t seen in decades, but we picked up right where we left off, and it was as if no time had passed between us.

One friend in particular was my work husband back in the day. We worked at the cosmetic counter together at Nordstrom back in the mid 90’s. We hadn’t kept in touch after I moved on, but we did reconnect last year on Instagram.

He never posts anything too personal, he keeps it whimsical and happy, so when I saw a picture he posted of himself, I was alarmed at his appearance and called him right away.

It turns out, he has had several cancers the past couple of years and is now dealing with an inoperable brain tumor. After the initial shock, I told him I was buying a plane ticket to come visit and a couple of weeks later I was there for a long weekend.

He told me upfront that I was there for comic relief and that he didn’t want to talk about illness. I wondered on my way out there how I was going to find the strength to do that. But…when I walked in his house, saw his bright big smile and heard that infectious laugh of his, I knew it would be ok.

We pretty much sat on his bed the entire time, watched Feud (the FX drama about the feud between Joan Crawford and Bette Davis),  Say Yes to the Dress marathon, relived old stories from our shop girl days and ate grilled cheese sandwiches.

It was one of the best vacations I ever had.

Big picture stuff did come up, but not in the way you think. He said to me “Do you remember how stressed out we use to be to make our numbers? Do you remember how we had to have the right clothes? Do you remember always talking about losing weight? It all seems so trivial now. I only care about family and cultivating relationships with the people I care about”.

At that moment, I decided to really step it up and focus on what is truly important. His words were such a gift to me. When I boarded the flight home, I got a text that thanked me for the visit and for adding a bit of brightness to his routine…and then he said he was scared. I cried all the way home.

When I got home, I made a list of everything that is no longer serving me and either sold it or donated it. I am using those funds to take a month long road trip with my childhood friend Sandy next month.

I also made a list of everything that makes me truly happy, things that feed my soul and made a declaration to myself to do them. Often.

I like love to make things beautiful, create ambiance. I love to write hand written letters and draw art on the envelope. I love to be in my garden and grow beautiful, colorful flowers. I love to read. Most of all, I love to love. I want my friends and family to know how much I love and appreciate them.

I also wish to be a blueprint for someone else. I want someone to say “hey, she did it, I can too!” I used to think that Celtic Complexion was my legacy, my swan song, but that is only the beginning. I am expanding it.

I am creating a retreat for women who need to be nurtured, to put themselves first, to disconnect from the world in order to get quiet and listen to their heart. To be surrounded by the beauty of nature. I envision this retreat as a gateway to what is possible, with a supportive helping hand leading the way.

Celtic Forest Retreat. That’s my next chapter. What’s yours?

Celtic Forest Retreat Logo