It’s Time to Breathe

I think I may have a powder problem.

It’s been snowing every day for about two weeks now….maybe longer? I don’t know, I’ve lost track.

I’m not even sure what day of the week it is, and I don’t even really know what month we’re in.

Reality? What’s that?

It’s been a snow junkie’s dream out here.

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I know we’re not the only ones to get more snow than usual though, and I love to hear people complain about it. It trips me up.

I have come to the conclusion that everyone loves snow. You either love it, or you love to complain about it. Either way, snow always causes a buzz and creates a stir. This tickles me.

On the mountain, as I mentioned, the weather has just been gnarly. It’s so fun! Yesterday, for instance. I was trying to cross a ridge line and go downhill, and got stuck in some sort of strange uphill ground blizzard. The visibility was zero and the uphill blowing snow disoriented me so much I had no idea if I was moving or not.

And then suddenly, I found myself upon this juicy, tempting tree stash that I had never seen before. Entering the woods and hoping for the best, I felt like I was Alice in Wonderland hallucinating in a strange forest. Oh the adventures, my friends!

As you can see, I am all strung out on powder over here, but I am going to try and squeeze this out.

Many of you are wanting to know more about how I was able to lose almost 30lbs without dieting, starving myself, or going to the gym. Especially when I didn’t know I had an extra 30lbs to spare.

Last post I told you that I surrendered to my passions and let them lead my way. This is one of the factors that played a part in my weight loss, but there’s more to it than that.

First let me emphasize that since I was unaware that I had extra weight to lose, I was not out on a mission to “lose weight”. Many of you might not believe my story, but for those who take my words to heart, I promise your life will never be the same. This is how my journey began.

As as student of Ayurveda, I was blessed with the mandatory homework of meditating for 30 minutes every day.

At first I kinda blew it off, thinking that I already “meditated” daily. I did not respect the importance of actually carving out 30 minutes of quiet alone time to do nothing but hang out and get groovy with my breath.

And then, it was like my teacher could tell that I wasn’t really doing it. She scolded me in the sweetest way possible, and whatever she said, pistol whipped me into actually sitting down and focus on my breathing.

It was extremely weird, and boring, and uncomfortable, and awkward, and annoying, and frustrating at first. I cursed it, and rolled my eyes at it, and denied it’s validity and importance. I acted too cool. I acted like I was above doing it. I acted like I didn’t “need” meditation.

But, as with anything, with practice it got easier. And then it got a lot easier.

Now, I wake up and immediately go into meditation mode. It’s a habit now.

When I was just starting out and learning how to meditate, at first all I did was focus on my breath. I would focus on feeling the sensation of my breath entering and leaving my body.

That’s it. That’s all I did. For weeks and weeks. And during this painful time, I was all, WTH nothing’s happening!

But then, as softly as a whisper, changes started happening. So softly in fact, that I can only see the major impact of all of my baby steps as I look back now, and I can see that what at the time seemed so simple and small and insignificant, over time was so screamingly large and massive and major.

What happened at the time, but it was so small I barely even noticed it, was that after spending so much time chillin’ with my breath, I began to really appreciate my breath and what it does for me. And that small appreciation grew into this massive love affair with my body that I’ve never experienced before.

Now. I am not talking about an ego love. No.

I’m talking about a respect for my body, and how it supports me, and sustains me, and gives me life. I gained this new understanding that if I take care of my body, it takes care of me.

So as I continued to breathe, my meditation switched from simply being aware of my breath, to giving thanks for my breath.

As I expressed gratitude for every breath, and my love affair with me, myself and I blossomed, I began to want to treat myself better.

This took over all areas of my life. And though that may sound daunting, as I mentioned above, everything happened so subtly over time that only now can I look back over the past year and see how massively my life has changed.

I began to eat differently, and sleep different hours. I spoke to myself differently, and used different products on my hair and skin. I became more conscious of what goes into and onto my body. I also began to be more conscious of how I spend my time, and how I use my body. Allowing myself to do activities that I enjoy where I also get exercise became a priority.

What I want you to see is that if you start from a point of simply being thankful for your breath, that gratitude will blossom into something beautiful. The blossom is you. You are a bud, waiting to bloom into a beautiful flower.

You are waiting to become the best version of yourself. Perhaps you are confused on how to get there. Take it from me that meditation can show you the way. It will you lead you there.

I hope you can see that from the simple act of meditating–which seems hard at first, but gets easier with diligence–there are natural instincts that occur within you that lead you to alter some things in your life that will result in you getting into the best shape of your life, and you do it without stress or strain. It just all comes natural.

Additionally, after my self respect blossomed, and I started to treat myself better and with more respect, this newfound love and ultra respect has overflowed into every other area of my life. Suddenly I find myself loving and respecting others more, and all of nature and the environment too. I feel way more connected to all of life. It’s a crazy feeling. It feels electric.

This is wild because I feel like I’ve been respectful of myself and others and the environment for a long time now. But meditation has brought me to a whole new level now. I’m not even sure how you describe it. It’s like giddiness.

Meditation also helped me allow my soul/heart to lead my way, instead of my ego/brain. When I did this that is how my passions became my north star.

I’ve been meditating daily for almost a year and a half now, and it has made my life better in every way. Not only have I lost nearly 30lbs, but my life has evolved into my dream life. And it’s still evolving of course. And there are things that I want that I do not yet have of course. But real freedom begins when you can still be elated in the space between not having and the having of all that we want. Meditation helps with this.

Friends, I have people ask me all the time now if I’ve won the lottery. Friends ask me incredulously if I still work. And all I can say is, if that is the vibe I am giving off then I am doing my job well. (Does it count if I feel like I won the lottery but I do indeed work?)

That’s how pumped up I am on my reality. This can all happen for you too. All it takes is one simple act a day. BREATHE.

Being single, it makes sense that I’d want to try and stay fit. But this is not where my interest lies. I’m more interested in breaking the stigma that married people all fall out of shape. Because more important that being fit while you’re single, is staying fit for your spouse. And even more important, is staying healthy for your kids. I can’t think of a greater gift to give to your partner, kids and grandkids than your own health. What a blessing!

I grew up playing sports year round, but after meditating for over a year, and making the changes I was led to make, I can honestly say that at 34 years old, I’ve never felt more fit. I may not be as fast as I once was (or maybe I am?) but that is ok, because it is not about the sprint anymore. It’s about the long haul. I’m going the distance.

It’s not so much about looking good, as it is about feeling good. It’s about feeling strong and having lots of energy. It’s about vitality. These are what will increase our quality of life.

And once you do the things that make you feel good, you start to look good too. Looking good is a byproduct of feeling good. When you have so much love inside of you for yourself and others and nature, it radiates. You glow in a whole new way. Beauty shines from the inside out.

Who will join me this year in going after their dream body and their dream life? I did it right in front of your eyes, so I hope you will take this post to heart. Meditation changes lives.

Love and happy breathing!

Jenn

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