Happy (Belated) Mothers Day!

As a mother, I’ve developed a new appreciation for teachers who allow students to join class late; babies sometimes have very different timelines than their parents. True to form, I’m acknowledging Mothers Day a little late, but I think most mothers are happy to accept a little appreciation any day of the year. Here’s an excerpt from a call to end mommy wars I recently wrote for Inner Fire:

Let us celebrate motherhood this year by putting inane mommy wars to rest. Too often we shame, blame, and criticize other mothers in the name of championing what is best for their children, all while disregarding that tearing down another woman is never in the best interest of her family.

Instead of getting distracted by petty arguments, let us begin a dialog about how we can elevate one another: How can we stand for each other? How can we empower our daughters? How can we change the world for them so that if they become mothers, they have the support, education, and resources to make the best choices for themselves and for their families?

Happy mothers day, mamas! Please read the rest of the article over at Inner Fire>>

Personal Spring Cleaning

I’ve been particularly motivated to do some spring cleaning this year because my toddler finds new, undesirable ways to interact with clutter on a daily basis. The less I have the less I have to childproof. With how hectic motherhood is it’s hard to find the time! Similarly, it’s hard to find the time for self-care, meditation, and introspection; i.e., personal spring cleaning. I recently wrote an article for Inner Fire about how important it is to take out the trash. Here’s an excerpt:

Intuitively, we know what in our lives is just trash that’s taking up space: It’s the stuff we hold onto just in case we come up with a use for it later in life; it’s the mementos we never look at; it’s the ingrained habits that no longer serve us. It’s just trash, nothing more. Today, I challenge you to let go of one of the old pieces of trash taking up space in your life, abruptly and without ceremony. Take it to the curb and do not look back.

Read the full article over at Inner Fire>>

The Perfectionist’s Guide To Moderation

The only quote I have listed on my Facebook profile is, “Ce qui mérite d’être fait mérite d’être bien fait,” which translates to, “That which is worth doing is worth doing well.” Obviously, the spirit behind this quote is to inspire me to strive for excellence, which is an good thing; however, this philosophy has also lead me into the traps set by perfectionism:

  1. Inaction: “If I can’t do it well, I won’t do it at all.”
  2. Taking on too much: “No one else can live up to my standards, so I’ll do it all myself.”
  3. Inadequacy: “What I did wasn’t perfect, so it wasn’t good enough.”
  4. Criticism: “What you did wasn’t perfect, so it wasn’t good enough.”

If this sounds familiar, I recently wrote an article over at Inner Fire about overcoming perfectionism: The Perfectionist’s Guide To Moderation. (No comment on how long it took me to decide whether the apostrophe fit better before or after the s.)

For more on perfectionism, here’s a post I wrote three years ago around the quote “Sometimes we strive so hard for perfection that we forget that imperfection is happiness.”

Sometimes we strive so hard for perfection that we forget that imperfection is happiness. - Karen Nave

Sometimes we strive so hard for perfection that we forget that imperfection is happiness. – Karen Nave

Winter Wisdom

It’s been a busy winter between joyful visits with friends and family, near-and-far, and weathering my first cold and flu season with an infant (I don’t think I’ve ever been sick this frequently in my life). It’s given me lots to write about over at Inner Fire!

Each member of my extended family has different desires and expectations around gifts, which inspired a festive article: How To Give Presence During The Holidays. When my husband asked me years ago what the most important, defining part of Christmas was, my knee jerk response was, “The cheese ball my mom makes” (Whoops, I meant, spending time with family and friends. He still hasn’t let me live this down). Needless to say, this is my favorite alternative to gift-giving during the holidays:

Hungry belly. Humans bond over food, and this is truer than ever over the holidays. If your diet differs from your loved ones’, consider ways to participate in meals without compromising on your needs. Maybe make a hearty quinoa and beet salad to share, and pair it with parts of the group meal that are within your diet. Maybe throw your ideals out the window for a day and dig in. Make a choice that works for your situation.

Whether I’m visiting frosty Canada or in chilly Northern California, there’s one constant: I’m always cold. For other yogis who cannot bundle up enough in the winter, I wrote 10 Fiery Yogic Practices To Get You Through The Winter Months. My method of choice it to warm up from the inside by combining two of the ideas I listed: spice and hot tea:

Try antioxidant-packed turmeric tea.

Having a baby last year threw me into survival mode for a bit, and I’m just getting back to setting goals that extend beyond keeping my family clean, clothed, and fed. Here’s an article about how to power up your 2016 goals: The Secret To Making Your New Years Resolutions Stick. I’ll give it away; the secret is defining your sankalpa:

Well-formulated New Years resolutions are specific, measurable, realistic goals broken down into steps with deadlines. Your sankalpa is the fire that ignites these goals.

This year, I didn’t get around to setting my New Years resolutions until February, but I’m okay with that. Instead of getting started exhausted from the holidays and getting over a cold, I’m beginning rested, healthy, and focused. Join me! It’s better to be a month late than to wait twelve months until 2017.

How To Give Presence During The Holidays

I love that Inner Fire lets me write articles about non-materialism, even though it would help the company’s bottom line more if we gave each other nothing but clever tank tops and exuberant yoga tights during the holidays. Here’s a quote from my recent article, How To Give Presence During The Holidays:

There is nothing wrong with giving and receiving presents; according to Gary Chapman, author of The Five Love Languages book series, “for some people, what makes them feel most loved is to receive a gift.” However, Chapman explains that others do not understand or express love by receiving or giving material things; they would take a word of praise, a warm hug, or family storytime in front of the fireplace over all the gifts in the world. A strong focus on gifts during the holidays can leave these people feeling drained and unfulfilled.

Read the full article over at Inner Fire to get some non-physical gift ideas to nourish your loved ones’ souls.