I Have A Confession To Make

My dear sisters, 

I have been away for a while. Not just physically, as demonstrated by the lack of blog posts in recent months. No, I have been away mentally, emotionally, and spiritually as well. Please know that I held all of you in my heart during that time, but you did not know that, and for that I am sorry. 

I did not step away willingly from Divine Renewal. But, as we all know, life tosses us challenges from time to time. For the past few months, I have been dodging and weaving the incoming barrage. 

The challenges came in the form of health issues: my husband is battling a serious autoimmune disease, my mother underwent surgery for breast cancer, and my personal health hurdles apparently arose from the stress associated with these factors as well as trying to embrace the needs of my two children. 

I think of myself as a woman who takes care of herself by watching the quality of food I eat, taking time for myself, using healthy household products, and choosing nutritional supplements. I am trained in and am passionate about supporting and furthering physical, emotional, and spiritual nourishment. I help other women use food as self-care, regain their power of the body through food, and help them restore their divine feminine power and self.

Yet with the introduction of the stressful situations in my life, I have a confession to make. 

I was jolted into a new reality. I found myself with elevated stress hormone (cortisol) levels, which was accompanied by weight gain and played into a diagnosis of insulin resistance and prediabetes. 

My sense of consciousness and wholeness were impacted; I found myself and my body spinning out of control. 

I had to look at the diagnosis of autoimmunity for my husband and contemplate what this meant. Autoimmunity involves inflammation throughout the body and is believed to have various causes or risk factors, including heredity/genetics, ethnicity, gender, stress, environmental factors, and lifestyle. On many occasions I have talked about inflammation, its impact on the body, which foods cause and contribute to inflammation, and the numerous diseases and symptoms associated with it. 

All of these issues—cortisol, weight gain, insulin resistance and prediabetes, autoimmunity, and inflammation—are in my home, my body, my spirit, my relationships, and my mind, up front and personal. I need to and am ready to confront each of them. However, I want to take you on that journey with me, 

because these are not unique situations; they are experienced by millions of women every day.

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I am not in these struggles alone; nor are you. 

So here are the questions I have asked myself and now ask you: 

* Are you ready to take back responsibility for your health? 

* Are you willing to accept you can make lifestyle changes, although some of them may be challenging? 

* Do you want to be release the balanced, vital, creative, amazing woman that is dwelling inside of you? 

* What do you need to do to make the necessary changes to reach your goal? 

Now ask yourself these questions: 

* How often do you feel fatigued, achy, blue, jittery, mentally foggy, or stressed? 

* Are you losing your hair? 

* Are you frustrated with an inability to lose weight even though you watch everything you eat? 

* Do have food cravings? 

* Do you often experience indigestion, gas, or bloating? 

* Are you experiencing insomnia or restless nights? 

I can feel the energy from the wave of nodding heads! 

I have another confession to make: even though I did not welcome my health challenges at first, I do now. They are a message from the universe. I am embracing my health challenges as blessings in disguise. Rather than stepping back, they are telling me to step up with my sisters and share the experiences necessary to make the journey back to wholeness and health. We are in this life-altering journey together, if you are willing to join me. 

So here is your invitation! Over the next few months, we will be working on some informative articles that will address the health issues that affect your lives the most, based on emails we receive from you. We also will be developing exciting, in-depth, hands-on material that will help you learn how to restore balance to your body, mind, and spirit through healthy food choices along with stress reduction and other healthful habits. “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” This simple yet powerful statement may have been uttered thousands of years ago, but it is still so true today. Let’s learn how to live a lif

The Greatest Gift

Dear  Sister, 
 

Welcome to what is often called the most wonderful time of the year: the holiday season that seems to consume the month of December and beyond. It’s a huge gift-giving time of year when we focus on family gatherings and a shopping list: what to get nieces and nephews, best friends, spouses and kids, and coworkers.

It’s also a time when it’s easy to become overwhelmed with small details, such as how many cookies you need to bake for your child’s school holiday party, what to wear to the company holiday event, when you’ll have time to shop on the weekend, what to make for the family holiday dinner, and can your budget possibly stretch to meet these and other expectations of the holiday season.

All of these demands, plus those you impose upon yourself when you cling to old habits and traditions that no longer fit into your life, can result in feeling sheer panic. That’s when you may hear a voice in your head: “you’re not good enough, you’re not doing enough, you’re a failure, you need to buy more stuff, you need to, must, should” (fill in the blank). 

I implore you to stop, shut off the voice, take a few deep breaths, and reflect on what is really important this holiday season. 

Love
More specifically,
Self-Love

It’s much too easy to divert our attention from the spirit of the season and to focus on material things. After all, we are constantly bombarded with advertisements, commercials, and pressure from other sources to buy more, want more, spend more, and be more, even though none of these demands have been linked to personal happiness, satisfaction, or joy. 
 

When we talk about love during the holidays, it’s important that we target the most important love of all: self-love.

Yes, I know you may be saying that sounds selfish, self-centered, or egotistical, but the truth is, you need to love yourself before you can fully love others. You have likely heard this sage wisdom many times, but that doesn’t make it any less relevant or true. What is necessary is for you to embrace it, believe it, and then live it. When you care for yourself, the energy you embody will be jettisoned out into the world, experienced and witnessed by others. It is the greatest gift you can give to yourself and others. 

Cultivating self-love and connection with the Divine Feminine is a life-long journey—and adventure!--and so the best time to begin is now! How can you work on achieving self-love during these challenging times? Here are a few suggestions that are relevant not only now but all year-round.

Practice these suggestions every day—as many as you can as often as you can. Congratulate yourself every time you take a positive step. However, don’t be hard on yourself if you find it challenging to practice these self-love acts. You have what it takes to keep moving forward.

My sincere wish is that these self-love acts or thoughts become a habit, so that you can truly enjoy and embrace the joys of life and experience the wonder that you deserve.

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11 self-love actions


 

Be your own best friend. When a challenging situation arises, think about how you would talk to a best friend who was experiencing the same thing. That’s how you want to treat yourself and talk to yourself.

Engage in physical activity. Whether it is sedate or vigorous, sprinting or walking, move your body and celebrate the energy that surges through you as you do.

Act like a child: not childish but childlike. Take the time to look at some aspect of nature as if you have seen it for the very first time. Be playful and don’t take your life so seriously.

Seek the Divine Feminine. She already resides within you; it’s simply up to you to make the connection. Take some private time daily to meditate, focus on connecting with the Divine Feminine within, and speaking your mind, even if silently. Be patient; you will connect. 

Banish the negatives. The words you speak to and about yourself are incredibly powerful, even if you don’t realize it. Every time you utter something negative about yourself, take a moment to turn it around to a positive statement.

Nourish your essence. Eating food that is processed and refined introduces toxins into your body, mind, and spirit. Whole, natural foods nourish you holistically, gut to brain to spirit self and should always be your choice.

Express yourself. Jot down your desires, fears, goals, dreams, and challenges. Seeing your feelings in black and white can help you ask important questions: Why do each of these things matter to me? What do I need to do to make them a reality? How important is this to me right now?

Express gratitude. It’s a scientific fact: expressing gratitude is healthy physically, psychologically, and spiritually. It also boosts your self-esteem. Every day, express at least three things for which you are grateful. 

Get enough sleep. It’s easy to let yourself get rundown and overly tired by trying to do too much and/or worrying all night about what you need to do. Practice healthful bedtime habits every night, including going to bed and getting up at the same time every day.

Practice meditation. Engaging in meditation daily is a powerful yet quiet way to destress and show yourself self-love. Ten to 20 minutes of meditation daily can help you connect with your Divine Feminine, release your anxiety and stress, and prepare to focus on your day.

Create boundaries. “No” is such a small work yet it carries incredible power when it is used correctly. Saying “no” is a way to create boundaries, and oftentimes during the holiday season, uttering this simple word can relieve you of enormous stress and give you enormous ease. When you are getting stretched beyond your limits, say “no.” 
 

Wishing all of my sisters a healthy, joyous, powerful, and spiritually rich holiday season.  

Myriam Llano

Reconnecting and Healing Your Body Through Sensuality and Letting Go of Body Shame

How much do you love your body?

For many women, myself included, this can be a difficult question to hear and answer. That’s because this question, although simple on the surface, is loaded with a history of trauma, challenging emotions and feelings, body shame and more.

At the same time, it is critical for most sisters to reconnect with and heal our bodies by embracing with our sensuality and letting go of any shame we feel about ourselves.

This is no small task, but it is essential if we want to bond with our Divine power and realize our full potential as vital, loving, compassionate, creative women.

The question is not why we feel shame for our body temple, but how can we overcome it. Achieving that connection is a multistep process.

For one thing, it makes no sense for women to begin connecting with their emotional body if they are suffering from physical issues such as inflammation and sickness. That is, loving their bodies and their sensuality is likely the last thing on their minds if the body is in distress. That means we need to have compassion for ourselves and to move forward on the path of healing in a deliberate way.

The critical part of the connection process involves recognizing the essential relationship between nourishing your body with nutritious food, knowing that such sustenance is key to overcoming inflammation and illness and that your sensuality is intimately involved in this entire situation.

Inflammatory diseases are those that are characterized by inflammation. Some of the more common examples include allergies, diabetes, heart disease,Crohn’s disease, inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis, celiac disease, hepatitis, and some cancers

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Nourishing foods have a high vibrational value 

That is, organic, unprocessed fruits, vegetables, whole grains, seeds, nuts, beans, herbal teas, fermented foods, raw honey, and filtered water fall into this category. The more high-vibrational foods we eat, the better we feel and the less we crave foods that don’t fully nourish us, such as processed foods that contain sugar, trans fats, and artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives.


When we choose high vibrational foods, we acknowledge that we care about what we put into our sacred temple. We seek foods that give us energy rather than rob us of energy. When we follow such a positive path, we are also led to adopt some natural soulful tools that can be considered the pillars of our growth and transformation.



Pillars of growth and transformation

If we eat nourishing foods and adopt the pillars, we can achieve true transformation, a return to the Divine women we have always been but that need to be released and allowed to flourish. What are those pillars?


Nature.When we immerse ourselves in the wonders of Nature, we become more grounded and in touch with our inner divinity. Make it a point to spend quiet time in Nature every day where you can meditate, reflect, and affirm your sacredness.

Journaling.Keeping a daily journal of your thoughts and feelings is a powerful and private way to face your fears, joys, desires, and dreams and understand them better. A journal is a tangible connection with your inner sacred self even when you find it challenging to connect in any other way. Journaling also helps you document your efforts to eat high-vibrational foods.

Meditation.Daily meditation, even if you do so for only 10 to 15 minutes, is a time to connect with your Divine Feminine and focus on centering harmony and tranquility in your mind, body, and spirit. Meditation is an important habit to establish and a pillar that can firmly ground you on your healing journey.

Movement.When we move, whether it is through dancing, walking, jumping, swimming, twirling, climbing, or more, we connect with a core energy and release it, allowing it to race throughout our body. Movement allows us to stay in touch with our body, appreciate it and love it, without shame. Take time every day to move with abandon or with purpose, but be sure to embrace the pleasures you feel.

Learning.Open your mind, heart, and spirit to the wonders of the world, other people, situations, and sensations. Make it a habit to learn something new every day—be it a new word, recipe, route to work, way to heighten your sensuality, or flower or bird in your area. Learning about your world stimulates your internal growth and makes you feel better about yourself.

Sensuality.Pleasure and happiness in your body is a birthright. All of the other pillars we discuss can help you reach a point where you can feel safe and without shame and come to celebrate your sensuality.

We were born to be sensual beings and to celebrate our bodies, not shame them. Nourish yourself and adopt the pillars and you will be reintroduced to the creative, loving, sensual being you truly are. 

What pillars do you use for your sacred temple to take care of her from a place of love, joy, and nurturance? 

Share on the comments below. I would love to hear from you.

With many wishes of love and health,

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Nothing Will Ever Be Enough

Dear sisters, many of us know people who are addicted to something, whether it’s gambling, shopping, food, alcohol, drugs, etc.

 

 These addictions are about seeking out and using things outside of ourselves—more wine, more chocolate, more pairs of shoes, you fill in the blank—to push down or bury fears and memories of trauma.

 

 For a brief moment, we falsely believe or want to believe that eating another box of cookies or buying a few more dresses and shoes will take away our pain or make us forget. 

But nothing will ever be enough. 

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The same is true of another type of addiction, one that emerges from inside of ourselves. 

 

This is an emotional addiction.

Unconsciously, we can get high from incessant worrying, anxiety, shame, and fear. Subconsciously, we want to experience these painful emotions…but why? 

 

Is it because suffering is all we know, because we believe it is all we deserve, because others have convinced us that it is our fate?

 

For many years, I was addicted to emotional eating, to the point that I became deathly ill. At that time, I chose to look at my life through dark lenses, seeing only the negative aspect in people, places, and situations. This vision justified my belief that I was a victim. My mother and I had to flee Colombia for Canada, leaving behind family, friends, school, and our belongings for a life in a foreign place, full of uncertainties.

Back then, I found comfort in the drama of knowing deep inside that if I saw the darkness in my surroundings, I would have validation for my feelings. 

 

That meant I could keep on feeding myself the venom that would then nourish more drama in my life. I believed I had reasons to keep the drama going.

 

What if all of those reasons are wrong? 

Experiencing highly negative emotions change the levels of certain chemicals in our body, such as cortisol and adrenaline, which are stress hormones. If we allow ourselves to be overcome by these unhealthy feelings over time, their chemistry becomes addictive. We get caught up in self-destructive way of being, limiting our abilities to pursue our dreams, realize our full potential, and grow with the force of life. The negative emotions become our new normal.

We can break this cycle of negative emotions and energy. They are not the nourishment we need to sustain our body temple or embrace our Divine Feminine selves. 

 

To help us eliminate this path of negativity, we can adopt these suggestions:

 

Become aware. Awareness of your behaviors, feelings, and emotions is a critical first step toward change. Sit quietly and contemplate your situation. If you are truly happy and content living with a cycle of negative energy, then so be it! If not, being aware that is not where you want to be is a huge step in the right direction.

Part of this awareness process involves looking at emotional eating. If this step does not apply to you, feel free to read ahead! However, so many of us face eating challenges, it’s important to mention it here. Ask yourself:

•     Why are you eating?Are you still living in a past that no longer exists? Are you blaming and judging yourself for past traumas? Is your emotional eating causing you to miss out on embracing your Divine Feminine life force and to be emotionally disconnected?

•     What are you eating:Are you feeding yourself negative stories about yourself and your past? Are you telling yourself you’re not pretty enough, smart enough, thin enough, successful enough?

•     When are you eating?Do you eat instead of being social with family and friends? Are you worried about what others will think of you? Do you eat when others have achieved something you wish you had done and wonder why you have not had the same chance?

Acceptance. Consciously accept that you have an emotional addiction and that you need to take responsibility for it by interrupting it and replacing it with something that will serve you rather than harm you. Vocalize your acceptance by saying it out loud in the mirror. Write it down. Share it with a friend if you are comfortable with that. 

Make a decision. Once you have acknowledged and accepted your current state of being, make a firm decision to move ahead and embrace positive, life-affirming habits and dispel the negative ones.

Journal. Keep a journal of your thoughts, emotions, and actions. Be objective and nonjudgmental; this is not an exercise in criticism but a way to observe yourself so you can better grow and change.

Make affirmations. On a daily basis, make declarations of being. (You may also want to incorporate the gratitude meditation I talk about here.) Stand in front of a mirror and speak your affirmations out loud so they resonate in your head, heart, and spirit. Speak of the things you are good at and keep reinforcing the parts of you that you are connected to physically and emotionally. 

Be vigilant. Whenever you find yourself thinking a negative thought or experiencing a negative emotion, stop yourself and replace it with something positively. This habit takes a while to adopt fully, but it can change your life for the positive.

After a while—and it may take days, weeks, or months--you will find yourself able to smoothly break the cycle of negativity and especially experience the harmony and pleasure of escaping the negative energy with which you once surrounded yourself. 

Are you ready to get off the path of negativity and embrace the sacred, divine you that is yearning to greet the world with positive energy? 

 

Please share with us how you have adopted these suggestions and offer some of your own so that we all may find our way to harmony. 

 

Holding you in the highest vision of love and health,

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You Are What You Think You Deserve

You Are What You Think You Deserve

It’s very difficult for me to witness how people I love dearly are falling apart because they insist on holding onto belief systems that do not serve them. My heart breaks for them, because I know how trapped we can feel if we allow ourselves to be ruled by every negative or misguided thought we have about ourselves.

Those thoughts are based on what you think you deserve. This is true of your body, health, relationships, financial situation, job, social life. What you believe you are worthy of will be your reality. The universe will undoubtedly match your feelings and you will manifest what you think you deserve.

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Embracing Your Feminine Nature

Embracing Your Feminine Nature

It has taken me a while to understand that our bodies are sacred, mystical, and amazing for so many reasons, and that we often forget to appreciate the cyclical beings that we are. 

Since I’ve come to appreciate this in myself, I can see it in other women and understand that the body, mind, and our very essence fluctuates with Nature’s cycles, such as the moon, tides, and seasons. We are organic, one with the Universe and all of creation.

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