The fear and sorrow that opens my heart

What am I afraid of?

This is the question that has been popping up lately. The theme of my week: FEAR.

My fears. What are they? What I am afraid of loosing? What am I afraid of not having?

I get some sort of blockage thinking about it. These same blockage I also get thinking about what makes me happy and when I question myself about what I really want for my life.

Is it necessary to even go there? Finding out what my fears are? My gut is telling me YES!

Because I think you can not have love and joy without fear and lost. And then comes acceptance  to then finally be able to let them go.  It’s not always easy to admit and face my fears, but to me it is part of the process to being able to live my true passions and desires with love.

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Meditation will surely help. I need to meditate more on this I told myself this week.

Actually I went to my fist meditation workshop yesterday morning. Coincidence? I think not!

It was so painful for me to sit there for 1 hour with my legs crossed and my back straight. It was difficult for me to concentrate on anything else but the pain in my upper back, it was even hard to breath. When I meditate at home I usually lay down, exactly because of the pain I feel in my upper back.

The whole fear topic of this week, the meditation workshop, this back pain. This is has to be a sign!

After the meditation session I told the teacher about my back pain and she asked me if I had experience  sorrow in my life.

Strange question, I thought to myself. Do I have sorrows in my life? No, I don’t think so was my first response. I am happy why would I have sorrows? I don’t really understand what sorrow means anyways.

But wait… Maybe I do.

This hole question of sorrow got me thinking on this Catday.

 Sorrow: a feeling of deep distress caused by loss, disappointment, or other misfortune suffered by oneself or others.

Maybe all those losses I’ve faced and experienced along my journey is stored right there in my upper back muscles? Could this really be? And could it also be linked to the same feeling of tightness in my heart region?

Maybe the loss of both or my grand mothers and the guilt that I felt not attending their funeral, plus not being there for my family is stuck there.

Maybe it’s the lost of good friends and all the effort I put into that friendship.

Maybe it’s all the losses of past relationships that betrayed and hurt me.

Maybe its the lost or the leaving behind of my close friends and family when I moved from Canada to Europe.

Maybe it’s the lost or the lack of a relationship with my brother that means so much to me.

Maybe it’s also the lost of myself, thought the partying, the being the “fun girl”, the trying to make unhealthy things work, through the overcompensating with confidence that I use to mask the uncomfortable felling I fells sometimes in uneasy situation.

Maybe sorrow has many ways to disguise itself thought different situations and are differently perceived for different people?

I think they may very well be my sorrows.

Here is what I found while looking up the connection between the physical back pain and the emotional pain.

Back pain: Lack of support. Money fears. Trying to be a super person, no backbone. Overburdened. Upper back: Lack of emotional support, feeling unloved, holding back love, vulnerable, resentment.

So this lead to me thinking about the upper back and heart connection.

The Heart Chakra.

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The fourth Chakra is about compassion, service and vocation. It is about acting lovingly. It is our “centre,” and the first of the spiritual Chakras. The first three are considered “physical.”

This Chakra opens as we are able to see beyond ourselves and become of service to others through “self-centered selflessness.” Vocational thinking tells us that we are here to be of use, not to use others or to be used by others.

Blocks in this Chakra will affect the upper back, arms, heart and lungs.

Heavy heartedness, grief, pain, and anger can live here.

Here is more information about the heart chakra here: http://blog.freepeople.com/2014/02/exploring-energy-heart-chakra/

I have a feeling this is the exact same blockage I have from finding my desires, my love and passions. They are one of the same.

The upper back is right across from the heart isn’t it?

TADA!!! AH HA moment for me right there!!!

I absolutely have to tackles my fears, sorrows, struggles before I will ever be fully able to follow my joy, desires and love.  They are connected!

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My fears are:

-Not ever finding out my special gifts and sharing it with the world by helping other.

-Being stuck, not having my freedom. Freedom for me means that I take full responsibility for my life. I am the leader. Freedom also means that I can truly express myself as I am. My true self. Fallowing my desires, growing and developing.

-Loosing my support system or the lack of one, or ever me not being there to support in return. I think it is human nature to help and be there for each other. I value my support system so much, being it my close family and friends, my boyfriend, my colleagues at work, my yogi friends at the yoga studio I attend, or the group of girls in my book club. It is the sense of community, supporting each other, the being part of something that is import to me.

-I don’t think I am afraid of dying, however I am truly afraid of dying without my life’s purpose being fulfilled.

There is a link between my fears, the sorrows I have felt through my life and my current struggles of finding my true desire to help/serve people with my unique and special gifts and it is manifesting itself in my upper back and heart area.

And now that I realize this, I can now work on it. Breath into it, let it go and open my heart!

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Get to know your fears, they may just be the key to your purpose, hope, desires and what your truly value for you life.

Wishing you all an open heart on this Catday!

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Lot’s of love,

Brandi

P.S It’s not for nothing that I booked myself a heart opening yoga class last week for tomorrow  😉 The universe just new I needed it!

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Living in the moment-practicing what I preach

I have much to share with you all, I’m bursting with inspiration, and I have been writing the whole weekend about my personal journey and also working on my dream project.

However….

On this fantastic Catday I’m practicing what I preach and living in the moment, being still and a whole lot of chilling. I let my body wake up when it wanted to this morning, did 30min of gentle yoga and 15 min meditation fallowed by a yummy green smoothie for breakfast.

I wanted to wish you the same today! To listen to yourself and just feel today!

and on that note, I feel like watching the Canadian men’s hockey team kick some Swedes butt in the Olympic finals today! 😉 GO CANADA GO!!!

I will be getting back to you soon!

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Happy Catday!

Brandi xox

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Happy belated New year 2014! Clear desires = Bright reality

Hi all and welcome back to Catdays!
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Happy New Year 2014!!

I’ve been absent from my blog for a little over a month now. But in light of practicing authenticity and being myself, I only write when I feel inspired and when it just comes naturally to me and when I feel like I want to share. So here I am on this Sunday feeling inspired!

Like most of you, I have thought about the New year and what kind of resolutions I wanted to have this year. Having been introduced to author, Danielle Laporte and her book the Desire Map during the holidays my view on resolutions and goals for the new year have completely changed.

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Danielle has an interesting concept. Instead of going about our traditional new years resolution list that almost seems like a to do list really, why not go about it a different way?

How about we think about how we want to FEEL in the new year?

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She calls it our Core Desired Feelings. Everything we do is driven by the desire to feel a certain way.

This struck something deep inside of me. Yes, finally someone putting words to how I preferred going about things and that resonated with me. The “To do list” and resolutions seemed overwhelming and could put me down if I didn’t get to accomplish the things I had set out to do on January 1st. I had gave that up a long time ago.  I never really was one for new years resolutions anyways, because they are so easily broken especially when I was unsure why I even wanted them in the first place and most of the time I set a resolution cause I thought I SHOULD do this, or that.

But THIS, “how do I want to feel”, this I can do. I wasn’t ready to do it on the 1st of January. I needed time with myself, to sit, reflect and to discover how I really wanted to feel for this New year. So here it is, February and I am setting my intentions as to the way I want to feel for 2014.

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Here are mine:

I want to feel Beautiful, Alive, Natural, Inspired, Desired, Peaceful, Balanced, Grateful, Connected, Free, My true Self.

… And the list can go on and on here. However the key is to discover witch ones (3 or 4) are your Core Desired Feelings and refer to them everyday to guide your choices.

You try!

Sit silently 10 to 20 minutes per day and just reflect on the way your truly want to feel. This may take time to find out what exactly are your Core Desired Feeling, however be patient with yourself if they do not rise instantly. Continue sitting quietly with yourself and give it time. Once you uncovered exactly how you want to feel, you can then start making small changes that matter in your daily life.

But what can we do to feel this way? In her book the Desire Map, Danielle gives us the tools to create the life we want in lined with the way we want to feel. Usually in the simplest of ways. I highly recommend reading the Desire Map by Danielle Laporte to help you get down to business on your Core Desired Feelings for 2014. The book is divided into two parts, the theory part and the workbook in part 2. You will have everything you need to guide you in this book.

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Doing this by yourself is great, but an other interesting way to go about it could be to join or create a Desire Map Book Club with a group of like minded people. I am part of one here in Oslo, filled with a diverse, inspiring, lovely group of women which I feel blessed to have the chance to get to know and to discuss our Core Desired Feelings together.

So for this Catday I’m all set  and comfy on my couch with my cat, tea, beautiful flowers, and candles and I’m Desire mapping!

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Hope the Desire Map finds it’s way to you!

Happy Catday and lots of love,

Brandi xox

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Spreading my true Christmas cheer!

May Peace be your gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through!  ~Author Unknown

As I have the Christmas music playing loudly, candles lit, setting the Christmas lights and decorations, I’m also setting root and intention for my Christmas traditions in lined with my values.

So this has brought me to contemplate MY true meaning of Christmas and the holiday season.

What I have come to believe is, the way I prepare for Christmas and the way I spend the holiday season is not only a reflection of myself and my beliefs but it’s also the energy/spirit I am sending out into the world.

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I feel that I want to bring a bit more meaningful traditions into my Christmas celebrating. I want to set out positives vibes of peace, joy, love and hope. And I want to spend good quality time with the people I love. What Christmas is really all about.

Having lived in Germany and now in Norway, it has lead me to experience nice European traditions that feel meaningful and in alignment with my Christmas values.

For example my favorite is meeting up at the local Christmas markets to enjoy a nice hot cup of Glühwein (German) or Glögg (Scandinavian). For me this is a great way to spend some quality time with friends.

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An other one of my favorites is to prepare my very own advent calendar and advent wreaths. This is a great way to bring out my creative side and it is nice to have homemade decorations with greenery I have found in nature.

This year I have made 3 Christmas wreaths. One to hang out at my entrance, one for my advent candles and one in the spirit of giving and offered it to my landlord. Spreading my Christmas cheer!

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The meaning behind the advent wreath

1st CANDLE – (purple) THE PROPHECY CANDLE or CANDLE OF HOPE

2nd CANDLE–(purple) THE BETHLEHEM CANDLE or THE CANDLE OF PREPARATION

3rd CANDLE– (pink) THE SHEPHERD CANDLE or THE CANDLE OF JOY

4th CANDLE– (purple)  THE ANGEL CANDLE or THE CANDLE OF LOVE

5th CANDLE– (white)  “CHRIST CANDLE”

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Today, December 1st, has become a new tradition for me. It is now the day that I take out my Xmas decorations out, listen to Xmas music, drink glühwein or glögg, make homemade Xmas wreaths and bake gingerbread cookies. Very cozy day. Wish everyday was like this!

The holidays are how you make them out to be. Remember to be yourself and spread your true holiday cheer.

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So what exactly is the meaning of Christmas for me?

It is a feeling of comfort and coziness.

It is being at peace.

It is a time to let go and relax.

It is a time to enjoy, laugh and have fun with the people I love.

It is also enjoying the season of winter. Being outdoors in nature. Activities in the snow. Ski, snowshoes, hikes and fires.

It is enjoying yummy food and spending some time in the kitchen preparing a wonderful meal together with family.

It is random visitors popping in with Xmas greetings.

It is phone calls/Xmas card greetings that says I am thinking of you.

It is a time to truly be with each other.

It is Christmas music. Micheal Bublé and Elvis are some of my favorites.

It is lights and decorations handmade from what I can find in nature.

It is the pure act of giving. Something meaningful to the people you love. As well as a charitable time giving to the less fortunate.

It is a time to reflect on something bigger than myself. (spirituality)

How do you spread your Xmas cheer? What are your Xmas values? Are they in-lined with the way you really feel about the holiday season and what it means to you. Are you being true to yourself in the way that you are celebrating?

My candle is lit on this 1st advent day and now let the countdown to Xmas begin!

Wishing you all happy holiday season and a nice chill Catday!

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Lots of love,

Brandi xox

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Are you in need of a Catday?

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Sometimes we may feel a bit overwhelmed with obligations and commitments to our friends, families and work. Some of us may even feel we never have a moment to ourselves.

I believe that something is out of balance here if we are always this busy.

Lately I can’t help but to notice how most people are busy busy busy.

I even feel sometimes that “busy” has become the new norm when answering someone who asked you how you are doing today. The common answer I’ve been hearing  is “I’m really busy, how are you?”.

Has being “busy” really become the new thing? In other words, are we glorifying being busy?

Who is expecting us to be busy all the time? Ourselves? Others? Society? Is it by being busy that we are determining our self worth?

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In a recent blog post from a friend of mine at “The Freedom Experiment” she explains this concept beautifully by writing on dormancy and it’s importance. She reminds us to take it down a notch and listen to the beat of our lives. This is worth a read. Check it out here: http://www.thefreedomexperiment.com/2013/11/07/rest/

For me true luxury is time. Having time and taking time. True relaxing, down time.

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Deepak Chopra says: “The Spiritual Law of Least Effort tells us that we can do less and accomplish more, an idea that seems at odds with what many of us have been taught throughout our lives. In general, we hold the belief that success is the result of hard work, struggle, and sacrifice.” but it is not.

I believe in that spiritual law of least effort. This law says that when you just let nature take it course life unfolds with effortless ease. Just like the way we breath. Think about it for a moment. Do you use effort to breath? No, you just breath.

When our lives are in balance things just unfold and leads us to abundance and prosperity. And to find this balance we need to slow things down and breath.

I get that we can not completely escape our busy lives.

However I do believe there are certain steeps we can take to ensure that we are not running ourselves down. Because this “busyness” that drives us to 60hrs or more work weeks are not only making us sacrifice time with our families, friends and ourselves, it is also leading us to neglect our health and well-being.

Slowing down is essential to being able to listen to our bodies, to be more mindful and to living a healthy, balanced life.

If you are someone who is super busy your body may already be showing sings telling you to slow it down.

So this may mean you are in need of a Catday. (The title of this blog and the whole reason behind it.)

Here is what Catdays means for me.

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It is usually Sundays and they are sacred to me.

Because

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They are days I do absolutely whatever I WANT!

On my Catdays I have no specific plans. I wake up in the morning and I just BE. I am aware of how I am feeling and I let my day unfold accordingly. I can choose to do nothing all day, stay in my pyjamas and watch movies, listen to music, go for walks, read a book, take cat naps. However they are also the days I practice being still. Taking time for myself. Do yoga and meditate. They are the days where I rediscover my self.

The key element of my Catdays are:

  1. No feeling guilty with doing what I really want to do
  2. I eat what I want whether it is healthy or unhealthy
  3. It is my days and I honor them
  4. I wake up when my body wants to
  5. I have no specific plans
  6. I practice being still

However it is all up to you on how you want to define your Catday. Everyone is different and everybody’s lives are different. So build your Catday the best way you can for it to fit into your life.

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Happy Catday and remember to take some time for yourself to refill the well of your soul.

Lots of love,

Brandi xox

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Notes on Yoga-Part 2

Hey everyone!

On this Catday I want to talk about Yoga! In particular about the team from doyouyoga.com and Erin Motz who is bringing us the MyYogaPro project.

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MyYogaPro

I mentioned this project in my last yoga post and it is worth mentioning again!

Why?

Because it will change the way you do yoga at home. And….

Because MyYogaPro raised it’s funding goal (20,000$) in less than 7 hours after the project was launched on Kickstarter.com, and just after three days this amount has doubled! They are now at over 50,000$ in pledges from almost 1000 yogis all over the world.

This is going to be big!

What is MyYogaPro?

MyYogaPro is a social network for yogis, where you can connect and share your practice with thousands of other yogis if you wish to.

MyYogaPro adds video game style elements to your yoga practice.

It will have countless yoga courses where you can track your individual progress and earn rewards while doing so.

If you are looking for a fun, interactive and affordable way to practice yoga, back the project now and receive the special prices for a lifetime MyYogaPro pass.

Back the MyYogaPro project here :http://www.myyogapro.com/00223

I’m really excited for this online yoga project because I love my home practice. Here is why.

-It is convenient. I can do it on my own time. I can also choose the kind of practice I want to do and I can also experiment a little with different poses I am not used to doing.

-Me time. It’s nice to practice yoga alone. It is a great time for me to be completely alone with myself, to discover and to be aware of how it feels to do yoga.

-It is free or a very low cost. There are thousands of yoga video’s online to choose from these days. You get your pick! However if you are like me and you prefer to have connection and like the teacher in front of you then I’m willing to pay for my online yoga classes. You don’t have to worry for it to break your budget, it is super affordable!

Being a “bad yogi”

The great thing about yoga is that you can make it your own.

You own your practice.

You decide what being a yogi means to you.

My favorite yogi at the moment is Erin Motz. She calls herself a “bad yogi” and has started this “bad yogi” movement. I love her style and I also think of myself as a “bad yogi” too. 😉

Imagephoto:Erinmotz.com

This is how Erin describes being a “bad yogi” in her article on doyouyoga.com.

  1. Bad Yogis are the ones in this unspoken group who don’t do yoga to be a part of the cool crowd.
  2. They don’t need to be able to do difficult poses perfectly or have their own Instagram hashtag.
  3. They understand that yoga is about feeling good, not just looking good.
  4. Bad yogis are real people, not impossibly fit, flexible, and flashy representations of yogi stereotypes.
  5. They’re real people who aren’t in it for the image or for the status, but because it’s theirs.
  6. Bad yogis don’t let any predetermined doctrine define their practice, and they don’t adopt some rigid set of “rules” just for the sake of having some.
  7. Bad yogis define their own practice.
  8. Bad yogis aren’t conceited and self-righteous about “their” style.
  9. They are inclusive and everyone is welcome, whether they are fat or thin or new or seasoned. It doesn’t matter if they see yoga the same way you do, but they’re welcome any way.

To me, being a bad yogi means owning my practice and doing it inline with my authentic self. It means recognizing who I really am and practicing in accordance to it. It means making up my own rules about yoga and how it fits into my life. If I eat meat and indulged in certain comfort foods and have a glass of wine once in a while, that doesn’t make me any less of a real yogi.

I believe the key is balance, having an open heart and being true to your practice the best way that works for you.

Happy Catday and enjoy some yoga in your life!

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Lots of love,

Brandi xox

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There are no accidents.

“There are no accidents… there is only some purpose that we haven’t yet understood.” -deepak chopra

I can’t help but feel that everything happens for a reason and that the people I meet are put on my path for a specific reason.

To me there is no such thing as an accident.

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When I take the time and look at the big picture of my whole life and the sum of my experiences and the life lessons I’ve gained though it all, I see that all the people I have ever met were an important piece of the puzzle of my life. Even though some of them I could have definitely skipped meeting, they still are important in bringing me to where I am today.

I am still unsure of all the exact reasons of why I met and meet the people I meet but I trust that it is the way is supposed to be.

I believe that if we can be aware enough maybe we can make sense of why we are meant to meet the people we meet.

“People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.”

Maybe we have a lesson to learn, maybe we have some good/bad times to go through and maybe we are meant to have a deeper connection and keep them for a lifetime.

Some people come into our lives as blessings, and some to teach us a lesson. Some are put on our path to help us and guide us to where we need to be.  Whatever the reason may be they are definitely meant to be there.

Thinking about this today has reminded me to cherish my friendships, to be grateful for the people coming in to my life and to appreciate the lessons I’ve learned even from those who were not meant to stay.

Once and a while it is good to have a look at who we surround ourselves with. What do they bring to you? What do you bring to them? If nothing positive comes out of it, maybe it is time for a little clean up. Be with people who bring out the best out of you.

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If you are looking for more positive relationships and connection in your life, remember that you receive what you manifest, you get back what you put out into this world.

Here are 3 simple ways I manifest positive connections in my life.

1. By realizing that the universe is always listening and responding: I truly believe in what I ask for I will receive

2. By bringing more awareness into my life: Practicing yoga and meditation helps me to bring a sense of well being and stillness that helps create a place to discover what it is I want to ask for.

3. By being aligned with my true self: Things will just flow in the right direction and people will be attracted to it if it comes from a place of authenticity.

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What ways do you manifest more positive connections and love to your life?

I want to finish this post by saying thank you for reading. This is no accident that you are here with me reading this post today.

Happy Catday!

Brandi xox

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