February thank you for being over and thank you for being a short month so it was over faster! At least that's how I feel this time around. And I know I'm not the only one who has been in a funk or so it seems at least.
So what to do when you are in a funk, lost your motivation and just want to move to a deserted island?! Heck what do you do when all of the above happens? After realizing I don't have enough money to buy a deserted island I put that on the back burner and did something crazy! Like really crazy! I asked for freaking help!!!!! Can you believe it?! And who did I ask for help? My family? My friends? No, I asked the universe! And before you think, man what's she been drinking now, keep reading. I got a not so subtle hint to get off Facebook. Take a break from any drama/negativity that sometimes seems to fill Facebook. Take a break from not always being there for everyone else. I needed to take care of ME! So I did! And it was so so good that I almost extended my "vacation" but I also missed my friends and my mum was like where have you been?? No posts for a whole weekend; she was starting to get concerned as Facebook is the way she can follow our lives abroad.
Below is my top 10 of different ways to get out of your funk but I wanted to elaborate on a few of them.
Staying hydrated is key to a range of health benefits such as fatigue, headaches, trouble concentrating but has also been linked to anxiety. So if you feel scattered or anxious, try opting up your fluid intake.
Smell/apply essential oils:
It's amazing how these bottles of essential oils can change your frame of mind. I'm not saying it's as simple as smelling some Lavender and the world suddenly becomes a better place. The oils don't do the work for us but will help us look within and foster the right environment for healing. My favourite book to help me is "Emotions & Essential Oils - A Modern Resource for Healing".
Essential oils can help uplift and/or ground you but also bring out the adventurous you, the fun you, the spontaneous you and we all need to find that person when stuck in a funk.
If you want to learn more about essential oils, head over to our Essential Oil page or contact me here.
Top 10 ways to get out of your funk:
1) Have a soak in the bath
2) Dance/listen to happy music
3) Smell/apply essential oils
4) Watch a funny movie
5) Write in your journal/gratitude journal
6) Go outside
7) Spend time with people who inspire and support you
8) Stay hydrated
9) Doodle or colour in your colouring book
10) Play games with friends
What's your favourite ways to get out of your funk? Share in the comments and give me some more ideas.
Mattresses?! Foam? Latex? Spring? Size? Lining and the list goes on. No wonder it's hard to find the right mattress for you and sometimes you and your parnter don't like the same firmness and what do you do then?
We had decided we wanted a new mattress for our new home as the current one was not very comfortable and over the years, you could see where we each had been lying. Mike's side was slightly lower than mine and the middle was where the mattress used to be.
Over the years I have tried out a lot of mattresses and didn't think much of the difference except some were way too hard to lie on. I mean I don't want to go to sleep on something that feels like the floor. So when I started looking again, this one specific mattress kept popping up: Casper - I started looking into them and really loved the idea of the mattress. Plus they have a 100 night trial, so if it's not for you, they pick it up free of charge and you get your money back!
The mattress is a combination of latex, memory and support foams. The open-cell latex foam helps you keep cool and adds the right bounce. The responsive memory foam provides pressure relief. The transisition foam layer provides deep comfort through consistent weight distribution. The durable support form strengthes the comfort layers and adds long-lasting durability. Lastly the woven cover is breathable, flexible and resiliant. This all sounds pretty neat right?! But I'm sure you want to know what we really think of it.
Casper's customer service is amazing! I had the pleasure to talk to Logan who was ever so helpful as my bank apparently didn't really like this a bit bigger than usual transaction. It eventually got sorted and the mattress was ordered.
The mattress is received rolled up in a box! Because of the high quality and resiliant foams which they use for the mattress, they are able to compress it without damaging it. It makes it both easier for us to get it home if you aren't home for delivery AND it saves on shipping costs for Casper. Because you don't pay anything for delivery!!
I posted the above photo on Instagram and Facebook, and I had a lot of people asking what it was and how on earth that could be a mattress! We got it unpacked and rolled it out on our bed frame and cut the plastic off. The mattress came to life and within 5min it was in it's orginal size and ready to use!
It's been 2 months since we had Casper join our family, and we can say it's been a very good addition. The mattress is so comfortable; it's like lying on a cloud! At least I think that's how lying on a cloud would feel like. It's not too firm, nor too soft. When Mike gets up, I don't feel it as I did with our previous mattresses which is a win-win.
Mike did mention neck ache after the first night but since then there has been no pain. They also do say to give it at least 2 weeks so you get used to a new mattress.
The unboxing was so easy and straight forward and a whole lot easier than manouvering a mattress through your house. Free delivery, free return and a great customer service! Casper has thought of it all and it's been happy dreams for us since!
In my workbooks (if you didn't read the post about them, you can do that here) there's a page about ritual days. Every week you have things you'd like to do or needs to be done, so the point is to turn each week into ritul days. Some suggestions could be: Adventure Saturdays, Switch off Sundays, go-to-bed-early Wednesday, creative Tuesday etc. I came up with the following for my week:
Social Media Monday: prepare photos and text for the week's various social medias, edit any needed text in about sections, explore new accounts etc
Blog Post Tuesday: The title kind of gives it away :) Writing blog posts.
Webinar Wednesday: Catch up on webinars from the last week.
Study Thursday: most of the day will be spent studying for my course.
Reading Friday: Get some readnig done - anything from personal development to fun books.
Run/Date Saturday: Time with Mike which let's be honest, almost only happens if I go on a run with him ;)
Self-care Sunday: Time to take care of me; bath, face mask etc.
This obviously doesn't mean I can't do anything else on those days. It's a help to actually get stuff done whether business or pleasure and whether it's watching 1 or 2 webinars, write 1 or 3 blog posts, it's a way to get stuff done and not have 10 projects going at once and not finsihing any of them.
I'm loving my self-care Sunday as I often forget to take care of myself and we all know that we need to fill our own cup before being able to help others. So every Sunday I have a bath with Epsom salt and some yummy essential oils. I love the combo Frankincense and Deep Blue, especially after taking up running. It's a great combo to help with aches and pains. I then use doTERRA's Body Butter which has Wild Orange, Douglas Fir, Frankincense, Shea butter, Cocoa butter, Jojoba seed oil and Avocado oil in it. It's a thick moisturizer which absorbs quickly into the skin. It's especially great for elbows, hands and kness who may need a bit more moisturization. Both Wild Orange and Douglas Fir are purifying benefits to the skin and Frankincense is rejuvenating to the skin.
Sunday evening I also use a mud mask which it's just fabulous! It's a natural earth clay mask which provides purifying and detoxifying benefits helping reduce wrinkles, fine lines and appearances of pores. You only leave it on for max 10min (start with a couple of minutes your first time and work up to 5-10min). It leaves my skin so soft and clean and a friend told me it also works great for detoxing your armpits!
I have also started dry skin brushing. I have done it before but with moving etc, it got put on hold but with Self-Care Sunday, I thought perfect time to add it in again.
The skin is our largest organ and 1/3 of your body's toxins are excreted through the skin, and this is where dry brushing comes in as a great help to unclog the pores and help the toxins excrete and not get trapped in the skin.
All you need is a natural bristle brush preferable with a long handle, so you can reach all over your body. Start with your feet and work up towards your heart with small strokes or in a circular motion. Avoid sensitive areas including your face. It's recommended to do 1-2 times a day but I do just the one time. After brushing, jump in the shower and afterwards add your favourite body lotion/oil. You should do dry brushing either in the shower/bathtub or on tiles, so it's easy to clean up the falling skin.
Benefits of dry brushing:
So that's my Self-Care Sunday! How do you take time out for yourself and your body? I'd love to hear from you and get more ideas.
Happy New Year!! 2017 is here and a new year for some people means new beginnings, new habits to be formed or maybe even New Year resolutions. As posted last week in a post you can find here, I stopped doing New Year's resolutions and was introduced to choosing a word for the year for the first time in 2016. It worked better for me than resolutions, so this year I'm choosing a new word.
Last year I went over a few words because I decided FOCUS was the right word for 2016 but I didn't find it difficult to choose my word. This year was the same. It didn't take me long before I was sure I had found the right word. Not everyone finds their word that fast and some have a struggle finding their word which is when the Facebook group, my two friends set up is a great place to throw ideas around and get help to narrow it down.
This year I wanted a word that would help me reach new goals in all areas of life, be confident in my choices and words, try out new things - I thought of "possible", "fearless" and "courage" but I didn't feel they were quite the right word. Then one day the word BELIEVE popped up and I was like; "That's it! The perfect match!"
Believe that I can do this!
Believe that I can kick CFS' ass!
Believe that I deserve success!
Believe that I am enough!
Believe that it's okay to speak up!
Believe that it's okay not knowing it all!
Believe that I'm not like others!
Believe that I can run again!
Believe that I don't need to be perfect!
Believe that everything will be okay!
I think you get the point now! The word is written in my workbooks and I got a bracelet to be my constant reminder when things get tough.
I'm already embracing my word as I have started running already and I signed up for 3 races in 2017! One of which is today! I got a lot of projects and ideas which I'd love to see through this year, so I'm very excited to see what the year will bring. I believe it will be an amazing year!
Are you doing New Year resolutions? Choosing a word like me? Changing habits or something else. I'd love to hear from you in the comments.
Here's to an awesome 2017!
doTERRA has their convention every year in September. It's 3 days filled with science, research, guest speakers, new products being revealed and experiencing the doTERRA culture. I went for the first time this year and it was an amazing experience.
There has already been a lot of recaps about the new products and changes and if you want to read about it, check out doTERRA's recap of it here - it will give you a little update about the new resources which have come out, the new products, factual updates as well as updates on the charity work doTERRA does. There is new exciting research being published soon which we will be sharing when it's available.
But I instead wanted to share my thoughts on the experience of going to such a big event, how it went, what I experienced and how I feel afterwards. Not only am I an introvert but I also live with an invisible illness that sometimes gets in the way of life, so I was a little nervous about how this week would go. With that said though, I don't let it be an excuse and I try to do things despite the fear of going outside of my comfort zone while of course still taking care of myself.
The event itself was spectacular! There were guest speakers from various professions and companies. The keynote presenter was Immaculée Ilibagiza who is a survivor of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. She shared her story on how she survived in a tiny bathroom for 91 days where she taught herself English and committed herself to a life of peace, hope and forgiveness. Truly inspiring story.
We also heard from all the owners on various subjects as well as wellness advocates. I especially enjoyed Laura Jacobs' presentation about emotions and how they are such an important part of our health and wellness. She presented some food for thoughts and how emotional and physical health are closely linked together. When real life happens, we respond emotionally which is normal and necessary! "The primary function of emotions is to get us to take action and make decisions!" So how do we get better at responding?! With a little help of changing habits and the use of essential oils can be a great help too. The new Emotional Aromatherapy Touch Kit is just perfect for it. Already diluted and ready to use, you can have them with you everywhere and use as situations arise.
One of the reasons I joined doTERRA was because I heard of the Healing Hands Foundation which is their non-profit organization, and is one way doTERRA has committed themselves to improve lives and offer hope around the world. It's through the HH we have the co-impact sourcing which helps growers in developing countries earn a decent living and developing their skills. If you want to learn more about co-impact sourcing, click here. But there is so much more to it than that. They are also able to help by building schools, health centres, wells etc to help the community. We had an update about Nepal after the devastating earthquake. As doTERRA and HH were already on the ground, they were able to help out the locals and they have since built the first 2 earthquake safe schools there.
A new partnership was announced with Operation Underground Railroad to bring healing and hope to the world. O.U.R. Rescue rescues children from sex trafficking around the world. When the children have been rescued, they are rehabilitated by O.U.R. Rescue aftercare program. You can read more about them here.
doTERRA has also created a blend called "Hope" which can be given out to children who might be in trouble. When they peel the label, they will find info on how to get help.
I mention these because it shows how much doTERRA cares and wants to help wherever possible. It's not about profit for them and seeing this in so many ways at the convention, just confirms again and again that I made the right choice by joining this amazing company. Experiencing the culture and the kindness of the staff, the executives, the leaders and all the wellness advocates are truly amazing. It was also great to finally meet some of my own leaders, who I have had countless calls and messages with over the last year.
I won't lie. The week was exhausting but in a good way. So much knowledge, socializing and interacting does drain my battery but I got through it, and I can't wait to do it again next year! Ticket is already bought! I took time out for myself whether it was for a little walk, quiet time as well as trying to go to bed not too late. The fact that I got through the week without crashing, also shows how far I have come. This would not have been possible 2 years ago so I'm very pleased with myself.
When Mike took up trail and ultra running, I wasn't quite sure what it all entailed. It was a complete new world to me but I saw how much joy it gave him, which made me happy. It also includes lots of scrapes, bruises and the occasional doctor/hospital visits, so obviously I sometimes worry when he goes out on the trails. But the positive out weigh the negatives, so I do what I can to stand at the ready with bandages, essential oils and my support to help him recover for the next race and training.
When he comes home form training runs in the mountains and shows me the beautiful surroundings, I can't help to think it would be great to be out there too. I know my limitations and that's okay. Our small hikes with our dog and occasionally our cat gives me lots of joy and I get to see the beauty surrounding us. But the last couple of days, I have been wondering something, which happened after Mike told me about another of his trail buddies.
Mike Farrington is an ultra runner from Illinois whom I have never met but he has become a big inspiration to me over the last couple of days. He has MS and ran the Squamish 50, 50 miler last month! That's f****** amazing!
MS is classified as an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system and has a lot of similar symptoms as CFS/ME. So I'm beyond impressed and Mike F. (just so you don't confuse the two Mike's) got me thinking about my abilities. With CFS/ME exercise can lead to relapses so it's very important to be mindful of your limitations and work within your limits. But with that said, it's not impossible to go out there and do something! I know I won't be running a trail race any time soon but I sure can do something! So let the training commence; slow but steady; for a 5km race next year. One without time cut offs as I might have to walk some of it! I have been looking at a few and will decide soonish which one it will be.
So thank you Mike Farrington!
Check out an interview Run Like A Girl did with Mike here to learn more about him.
Who inspires you and why? Please let us know as we love to hear from our readers.
I can say crazy because Mike calls himself crazy right?! Plus I think it does require some craziness to run 50km, 50miles and even longer plus adding in the mountains for a more challenging run.
I often get asked if I run too and it's a no! It's not that I didn't wish I could. Friends and family who knew me when I was living in Denmark know I used to play soccer every day of the week. I even played for two clubs because one just wasn't enough for me plus coaching girls as well as trained with selected players from around the province. Yes I loved and still love soccer.
However these days due to my illness I can't run much without getting ill and end up in bed recovering for 2 weeks afterwards. Sadly though, as I wish I could go out and enjoy the beautiful surroundings Mike sees on his trails. Being there just isn't the same as seeing it on FaceTime :)
So how is it living with a crazy runner?! Well, it's interesting, fun and sometimes worrying. It's a good thing I had some practice. See, my brother used to be a professional triathlete so I'm used to having sports gear all around the house, someone eating loads of food, training and racing a lot as well as waiting impatiently at the finish line/at home hoping he will come back in one piece.
As with triathlon, trail running is also an endurance sport and it takes a certain character to be able to do it. I'm just going out on a limb here; it also takes a certain character to live with someone who is into these kinds of sport - I'm sure my lovely sister in-law will nod at this, having traveled around and living with my brother :)
Trail running is not a sport where you can watch the whole race from start to finish. Most times you can maybe get 2-3 sights - start line if you get up very early, at one of the aid stations and of course the finish line. So what do I do while he races?! Well at his 50 miler, I decided to volunteer my time. Volunteering is always fun and I got to hang out with some great people while serving burgers and hotdogs to other volunteers and runners. It gave me a great insight into how tight the trail running family really is and it was great to be a part of this and I can see why Mike loves it so much.
A few tips I have learned since Mike started trail running:
I can't believe this is the first blog post about Mr. Felix! He's the centre of the family if you ask him but don't tell the cat that! However the last week has been all about Felix as he went in for surgery last Thursday. He had a broken tooth and needed an extraction and while under anesthetic, he had a dental clean too. One extraction, however, turned into 3, so we had a poorly dude afterwards. Loaded with pain medications I got ready for a couple of days of looking after him day and night.
We got home around 6pm and no surprise Felix was tired. I got his dinner ready with his pain medications as prescribed by the vet. He wasn't allowed any exercise so afterwards I got one of our pet travel cages out, put his blanket inside with a blanket on top and because he was pacing around prior to this, I put a diffuser on with two blends of essential oils called Balance (the Grounding Blend) and Serenity (the Calming Blend).
Felix's favourite essential oil is Balance - now I hear you ask, how do I know? Before using essential oils on Felix, I ask his permission or in some cases which oil he prefers. Leave the cap on the bottle and let your dog sniff the bottle. If he/she turns their head straight away, it's a no. If however they keep sniffing, you got your yes. Felix will not leave the Balance bottle alone which is why I say it's his favourite.
Balance is a blend of Spruce, Ho Wood, Frankincense, Blue Tansy, Blue Chamomile and fractionated coconut oil. The blend helps promote grounding feelings as well as helping you feel relaxed.
I added Serenity to the diffuser as well as it's another great blend for relaxation and has a calming aroma which would help Felix settle down and it worked great. I had the diffuser running an hour before bedtime too and he was more calm and settled down for the night quickly. He woke up twice during the night and I put the diffuser on for another hour and I found him quickly settling and falling back asleep again.
We continued this for the next couple of nights and it was a peace of mind that he got the rest he needed and felt relaxed, so he could recover without issues and without stressing about.
Not all essential oils can be used on dogs, so it's important to do some research before you start with your own dog. A dog's brain is only 1/10 the size of a human but the part which controls smells is 40 times larger than in humans. A dog's sense of smell is about 1,000 - 10,000,000 (depending on the breed) times more sensitive than a human's. A human has about 5 million scent receptors and a dog has anywhere between 125 million to 300 million!
So when using essential oils which are so potent, it's important not to overwhelm your dog. Never leave your dog alone in a room with a diffuser - you want them to be able to leave the area if they get overwhelmed by the aromas. Only use a couple of drops in the diffuser and if you are using the oils topical, it's very important to dilute the oils with an edible carrier oil.
Not all essential oils can be used on dogs and if your dog is prone to seizures, the list is longer. Some oils to avoid are: Wintergreen, Thyme, Clove, Oregano and Deep Blue. But there are so many you can use and it's great to have tools for minor things where a vet isn't needed but your dog isn't feeling at its best. Tummy problems, joint pain, repellent spray, support the immune system and help them be relaxed and settled like the ones I mentioned in this post; essential oils are great tools for your dog too. A great resource is My dog oiler where you can find recipes, info about dilution and usage. And of course you can ask us. We'd love to help out and share what we have used with Felix and if you want more info on essential oils in general, contact us for more info here.
Disclaimer: The info in this post are for educational purposes and provided only as information. The information and products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any diseases and the use of essential oils are not to be replaced with medical/veterinarian care. Readers are advised to discus essential oil use with their medical advisor/vet.
I have been experimenting in the kitchen this past week but not with food recipes but in stead with various products for Mike and I. I made a list with products we could make at home in our process of eliminating the toxic load on our bodies and it's been a fun experiment.
First up is a shaving cream and aftershave recipe for Mike as well. Mike has been using them this week and despite having to get used to a different texture of shaving cream, he's loving it. It does its job and he smells amazing so it's a win.
2/3 cup shea butter
2/3 cup cocoa butter
1/4 cup fractionated coconut oil
5 drops Cedarwood
5 drops Tea Tree
5 drops Peppermint
1) Place the butters and fractionated coconut oil in a double boiler and melt.
2) Mix in your choice of essential oils.
3) Let it cool down.
4) Whip with hand mixer until light and fluffy.
5) Store in container.
3 tbsp witch hazel
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
5 drops Cedarwood
2 drops Peppermint
1 drop Rosemary
1 drop Tea Tree
1) Place all ingredients in a bottle.
2) Shake well and dab onto the skin after shaving.
With hair wax we always have trouble finding one that does the trick and it seems every time it's time to buy a new one, the prices have gone up again. So I'm happy that we found a recipe which we are happy with. It has great texture and is easy to apply. It gives the hair a nice shine to it and holds it in place.
1/3 cup Shea butter
1/4 cup beeswax
1/4 cup jojoba oil
2 tbsp arrowroot powder
1 tsp Vitamin E oil
5 drops Rosemary
5 drops Peppermint
1) Place Shea butter and beeswax in a double boiler and melt.
2) Leave it on the heat after melted for 15-20min.
3) In the meantime add jojoba oil to a bowl with the arrowroot powder and combine. Add Vitamin E and essential oils of your choice. (I chose Rosemary and Peppermint as they add shine and stimulate hair growth.)
4) Take the mix off the heat and add the oil mix to it.
5) Mix with a hand mixer until it has a thick texture.
6) Put into a jar and store in a cool space.
7) Apply a little to your hair and style as normal.
It's been fun to experiment with these recipes and I'm really happy with the end results. We are one step closer to getting rid of toxic products in our home and going all natural.