Let's cultivate some motherfucking love.

It's no profound assessment that we're all reeling after the tragedy in Orlando this weekend. Our hearts are heavy, our minds confused, our souls frustrated and longing for resolution, wanting to help in any way that we can.
I know for me, these types of tragedies hit really hard. I remember when I was young I was so profoundly upset by what had happened at Columbine I wrote many a poem about the tragedy (one of which lived on my Grandma's fridge for YEARS after). We can sometimes feel that it's not our place to make public statements or get involved if we're not overtly tied to the situation (if we're not LGBT, for example, or don't have a connection to Paris). Yet for all of us, this type of event is tangible and cause for mourning. And sometimes we need help shaking it off. 
I found myself at yoga yesterday seeking some semblance of inner peace, a way back to connection in these dark times. There, my teacher reminded us of one of my favorite quotes by Dr. Martin Luther King:
Darkness cannot drive out darkness;
only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate;
only love can do that.


So how can we beat hate with love? By connecting to the love within ourselves and showing that love to those around us. By choosing to be the light in the darkness. By showing others the way. Yes, by focusing on ourselves and then spreading that lightness to those around us, we can truly be the change. Imagine a world where everyone just focused on spreading as much love as they could, on loving themselves.

One of my favorite tools for cultivating self love is an affirmation or mantra. When I found Erin Stutland's Shrink Session work out years ago, I found a way to combine them with my other favorite way to build up my self esteem and happiness: DANCING. Erin's free Say It, Sweat It, Get It challenge is underway, and each day she puts out a new video combining exercises, dance moves, and positive affirmations. I can't think of a better way to start building the love and spreading the joy within than by participating. 

Check out the video I made after her class at The Movement to learn more, and sign up to participate here. It's TOTALLY FREE and let's face it, we all need to shake it the hell out right now and pump up the vibes.

AND INCASE THAT'S NOT ENOUGH, check out my favorite tunes I'm rocking for some added Bliss.

MIXES I'M DIGGING:

SONGS I'M DIGGING:

How to: Learn to love your body #BlissandBeats

A few weeks ago I put out a video telling the story of my college eating disorder, the struggles I faced and how I was finally able to ask for help. As you can imagine, putting something so big and so secretive out there for the world to see wasn’t easy. But there was also a huge part of me that knew I had to do it. And that part of me was (so far) seemingly right.

I’ve been so overwhelmed by all of the responses I’ve received. You’ve shared your stories and helped me remember that none of us are alone in this, that this is and continues to be a real struggle for many. You’ve cheered for me and brightened my day with your kind words. You’ve thanked me for voicing my struggles, and in doing so you’ve moved me to such a state of awe and overwhelming gratitude that is hard to put into words how much it means to get to feel this way.

Yes, to say that I have gotten a lot out of your openness is an understatement.

When I first recorded my video, I thought I’d talk for maybe 5 minutes. I’m consistently surprised by how long I can TALK about this wellness stuff. So I didn’t get to cover EVERYTHING I wanted to cover. Recovery from an eating disorder is a journey, and it is not an easy one. It requires learning and re-learning and unlearning lessons until only the good ones stick in your mind and your heart and your soul. It’s not enough to just hear something. You have to really believe it, deep in your bones. And then there are the actions that you have to put into place.

It isn’t easy. But it’s worth it.

A lot of people say that an eating disorder always stays with you. Some days, I will vehemently shake my head and agree. But others, sometimes in long, luxurious stretches, I will smile and think “it can just be easy.” When the lessons click, they can stick with you for a while. And it’s the most wonderful feeling in the world, just living and not worrying about what you look like in that moment.

But as I said, it takes work. And the work (probably) never really ends.

These are five big takeaways I’ve learned on my road to recovery, my 9 year journey after seeking help. I hope that these will help you whether or not you’ve had an eating disorder. We all share the struggle of needing to learn to love our bodies and the work they do for us more.

 

Sending you heaps of love.

P.S. Today's Beat is by Mura Masa. I'd venture to say I found them through Bempology, an acquaintance's music blog that I've been following for years because he finds THE BEST music far before it becomes more 'mainstream' (as mainstream as indie/underground stuff can get). I'm including an extra one that I love for good measure. P.S. They are playing at Bowery Ballroom literally tomorrow (5/7) if you're into that.

Mura Masa -- Firefly

Mura Masa-- What if I Go?

MAD VULNERABILITY ALERT: On eating disorders and wearing sports bras in workout classes

Ooooohh baby. This is a scary one.

When I first had the thought to share a video about having an eating disorder in college, and the body image issues that followed, I thought to myself "damn it, Katie. Is this a good idea?"

And immediately, I knew that it was.

If you've been following my videos thus far you know that fear is just the challenge I need to know I'm doing the right thing.

Surprisingly, once I got going, it was super easy to talk about my past struggles with food. The words flowed out of me (as you'll notice by the length of this video and the fact that it is a two-parter). Perhaps it is because this is a subject that I am incredibly passionate about (yes). Or perhaps it's because it feels really good to finally share a part of you that you've kept secret for a long time from most of the people who know you (though to many of you, this will not be a huge surprise). For me, it's both.

I  am sharing this story because it does not define me. It is a small part of who I was, and also an important part of what made me who I am. It doesn't mean I am broken or was broken, or that I'm weird or fucked up or too much to handle (and I'm sorry if it hits you that way, because I know triggers happen). It means that I am a woman, that I've struggled to find my place in the world just like many of us have and do, and that I'm not afraid to own and love a dark part of myself. I'm happy and sad and glad and scared and anxious and elated and brave and more. 

Today I am a woman sharing her struggles and her triumphs. I am someone who is incredibly proud to have overcome something ugly. I am someone who hopes her message will resonate with someone.

I am going to be sharing a video as a follow-up about the things that helped me get through my eating disorder, but in the meantime, please know you are not alone. It took a village (family, friends, therapists, nutritionists, books) to help me see my body clearly again. And to all of the above, I am incredibly grateful. 

Much love forever and thanks for listening.

Katie

p.s. Today's beat is one of my favorite songs on the planet by one of my female spirit animals, Marina and the Diamonds. Someone went inside of my heart and captured it's song, and this is it. It's called Happy. And it's about a young woman's struggle and triumph in finding her own happiness. I hope you love it as much as I do.

 

 

It's magic time, don't miss this. #SUPERNEWMOONECLIPSE [Bliss and Beats #1.5]

Magic is in the air. Can you feel it?

Yesterday (3/8) was a new moon that is also a supermoon that was also taking place during a solar eclipse (that continues through 3/9).

Whoa. That's a LOT of stuff [and no, I haven't turned into an astrology nut].

Check out the latest episode of Bliss and Beats to see why I’m excited about this new moon (and the weird sign I received)!

 

Here are a few ways that you can take advantage of the #supernewmoonclipse and BLISS UP (we da best):

1.     RELEASE

True freedom is in letting go of those things that hold you back in life. I get so excited thinking about things to bid adieu to in my life. To start, light a candle or put on some soft music, and grab a pen and paper. Take a few deep breaths and think about what you’d like to let go of in your life. This could be a belief about yourself (for example, ‘I am not good enough’), about the world (“money is hard to come by”) or about others in your life (“my boss is never going to like me”). OR it could be something tangible you’re holding on to or allowing in your life that is no longer serving you (bye, bye shitty boyfriend!). Start with a list of at least 5. Then, do something to symbolically release these from your life. I like to cut mine into strips and burn them (safely, in the sink!), but tearing them up will do just fine.

 

2.     Set Intentions

Next, you’re going to want to replace the beliefs you just released with plans for the coming month(s). Think through 3-5 things you’d like to create in your life. This could again be something emotional (I want to feel grateful every day!) or tangible (I’m going to go on one good date this month). Then, write this down as an AFFIRMATION. This means to write it as if you already have it. So “I want to feel grateful every day” becomes “I express gratitude for my life every single day.” Keep this list nearby so that you can reference it over the coming month.

 

3.     Tie in actions

Intentions and affirmations are important because they help shift our mindset, but nothing truly changes unless you take action! So, take your list of intentions you just created and think of one action, big or small, that you can do to help bring your intention to life. This doesn’t have to be huge, it can be one small step that will help propel you into motion towards your goal. For example, my goal this month is to honor my inner power and inner voice. So one action I’m taking is to back off of dating apps and only login when I feel truly IN POWER, not in anxiety.  I ask myself “am I doing this because I want to, or because I’m feeling afraid/anxious/like I’m “supposed to?”” and proceed accordingly.

 

Because you guys rock, I’ve taken the above exercise and created a #BlissUp Worksheet to help you set yourself up for your best month ever. You can download it here.

 

If you find yourself getting stuck along the way, don’t worry! This way of thinking takes practice. AND I’m of course always here to help. Share your exercise with me or let me know where you’re getting stuck – I can’t wait to see the juicy work you’re already doing.

 

THE BEAT

Today’s beat is one of my favorite songs off of Anjunadeep 6, I’ve Got This Feeling by Cubicolor. This song gives me CHILLS every time… it’s hauntingly beautiful. And it’s tres appropriate because I have SERIOUSLY GOT THIS FEELING that incredible, beautiful magic is here NOW.


RESOURCES

If you want to read more about the March 8th celestial happenings, I recommend checking out this article on Mystic Mamma. Magic abound!

And if you want to learn more about MAGIC, visit my friend Bryce’s blog here.


Don't forget to grab you free #BlissUp worksheet and take advantage of these stars here!

Introducing Bliss and Beats aka Holy Sh*t I'm Vlogging.

Hi hi!

For a while I've been toying around with bringing the theme of my blog (Bliss and Beats) to life in a way that is a bit scarier than the occasional blog post. I wanted to push myself this year to check in more often because...

1. I feel like I have tons of useful content to share. I am a perpetual soul-seeker, so I'm constantly learning and growing by way of books, mentors, programs... you name it. I feel like every week (or really, every day) I learn something or realize something about myself and my experience that makes a difference to my quality of life. And often it's just like that - something as small as one new chapter I've read makes  a lasting difference.

2. Starting a business can be really challenging for SO MANY reasons, but for me, one of the biggest is my own paralysis. I never feel like I'm doing enough and I'm far too focused on the end goal, which feels so daunting and impossible that I find myself stuck in inaction. So, I've instead had to change my mindset and focus on just taking one small step each day. And content like this is something that is not only helpful to others (I hope!!!), but also a small, tangible way to begin reaching that big goal.

So I present to you- the first edition of Bliss and Beats!

What is Bliss and Beats, you ask? Well, this is an ongoing series of videos featuring one lesson in creating more bliss in your life (the lasting kind!) and one really dope beat [because you know I like music].

Basically, this is my attempt to combine my two passions and spill my guts to all of you on a weekly basis because I am NOT afraid to get mega vulnerable, y'all. And I WILL. Most of these are going to be about what I am working on IN THAT MOMENT.

To do this,  I'm setting a few ground rules for myself:

1. I have to do at least one every two weeks... with a goal to get up to one per week.

2. I WILL NOT spend too much time making each video perfect. That means that I can only do some rudimentary editing AT MOST. I am NOT filming it multiple times. I am using my computer or cell phone to tape. I am really not prepping beyond jotting down notes. I am letting this flow so I can get it out there rather than allowing perfection to basically bog me down and evidently not release anything. 

3. I think that's enough rules. 

But I need your help to make it great. You can help me by holding me accountable (haven't seen a video in a while? Call my "busy" ass out!) and by letting me know how the videos are working for you. If they suck, shoot me an email or write it in the comments (but email is much preferred because, privacy). If you got something out of it, let me know (all over the comments, baby). I love you guys and your help means the world.

Today's B&B is all about our fears, why we THINK they define us, and why we should bust through them. I'm sharing a story from my Costa Rica trip where I was scared shitless... and why it was one of the best things I've done so far this year. Check out the first episode of Bliss and Beats here and please, let me know what you think in the comments!

p.s. I of course did not mention the beat of the week in the video. It is the Redux version of Atmosphere by Kaskade, one of my number one favorite humans and a man who is bound to be a Bliss and Beats top contributor. You can peep that song below or on Spotify... etc.


xx