Here we are at the start of a new year. You could say it’s a chance to make the changes you want to your lifestyle. You could say it’s the start of a new chapter in your life, a chance to make this chapter your best yet. You could say what lies ahead are 365 … Continue reading Imperfect Practice is the Way Forward
And I said to my body softly, “I want to be your friend.” It took a long breath and replied, “I have been waiting my whole life for this.” -Nayyirah Waheed Has your body [whether the physical one that tends to come to mind first, or bodies such as the mental, emotional or spiritual] … Continue reading The Flames of Betterment
One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. -Clarissa Pinkola Estes I’ve written about declining baselines a few times before – Derrick Jensen describes them as, “the process of becoming accustomed to and accepting as normal worsening conditions. … Continue reading Signal Fires and Dark Times
Rabbi Rachel Timoner said, “..forgetting is the single biggest obstacle to living the life we intend to live. Think about how we learn or improve ourselves: We observe our behavior and imagine a better way. We set an intention. We apply our will. But then time passes. We are busy. Our minds are pulled in … Continue reading On Forgetting
“America would not be the wealthy country it is without slave labor. We would not have our power or wealth if we had not, for a very long time, depended on the unpaid labor of millions of human beings. I feel like I shouldn’t have to spell this out, but maybe I do. America was … Continue reading Listen to Black Women
A few months ago I sat down with Iris, founder of The Nabalo Lifestyle, for an interview that appeared in their most recent online magazine.
You can download the full publication of Issue Three: The Mystic (and the back issues) here: The Nabalo Lifestyle Magazine
Iris: Can you tell us a little bit more about the beautiful place that you call home?
Heidi: My family and I (myself, my spouse, and our six year old) make our home in the St. Croix River Valley, just to the west of the border between Minnesota and Wisconsin in the United States. It’s a landscape full of lakes, rivers, bluffs, ancient glacial potholes, small towns, organic farms, and plenty of winding trails to explore all of it. We live in a little red house perched on the edge of a ravine on the shores of a tiny lake, with a large field just up the hill from the house that provides space for a large vegetable garden, several types of berry bushes, and an apple tree. It’s all imperfect and takes a lot of work to maintain, but I love it here. Continue reading “The Mystic: An Interview with Nabalo”
What does it mean to “nourish our roots?” That question could be answered in myriad ways, but one constant is that to effectively nourish, said ‘nourishment’ must often be ingested in small bites. When I water the garden in the summer, the plants do much better when I give them a steady, small stream of water over time rather than if I just dump a whole bucket on at once. And interestingly (and not surprisingly) when I meditate I get a lot more out of five minutes than I do out of an hour. Because when I try to do an hour? It doesn’t last. But five minutes? That I can handle, even days at a time. Tiny doesn’t have to mean insignificant. Tiny can actually mean commitment and impact, if we let small things be enough. Because when enough builds, we find that we have a strong root system. A foundation that won’t crumble. A sustainable way of operating in the world. Less overwhelm in a culture that often feels out of control. Continue reading “12 Tiny Things”
Here we are at the end of another December. A time for looking back over the past year and looking ahead into the new one. Some of us will indulge “one last time” before beginning a strict diet on January 1st. Some of us will set lofty goals to exercise 6 days a week at the gym that we hate. Some will get out a blank journal with the intent of getting up early every single day to write down three positive thoughts. New years resolutions come in many forms, and sometimes they even stick for awhile. Benefits have been seen by setting one’s sights on making change with the turn of the calendar year.
But. So often it’s the same old same old every year. The diet starts strong and tapers off by February. It turns out we still hate the gym enough to stay home more often than not. “Thinking positive” starts to feel like pulling the wool over our eyes and avoiding the root issue. New years resolutions can be useful in setting a path forward, but they also fail a large percentage of the time. They don’t do what we really want them to do. They don’t change what we want them to change.
Do we throw in the resolution towel then? Stop setting goals since we just fail at them over and over again? Embrace our negative thinking since that’s what feels real?
Maybe. Actually, I propose we do all of those things.
It’s getting to be peak autumn color in Minnesota this week, and everywhere you look, it’s gorgeous. The leaves in the back of my house are blazing yellow and orange, and they create an impressive reflection on the lake when the light is just so and the air is still. It’s kind of like the water is on fire with the vibrancy of the season. Of course, this time of intense beauty is fleeting, only lasting a few weeks each year, but then again, it does come back around every year. We just have to make a point to pay attention to it when it does show up. It’s always interesting to me that such intense beauty can co-exist so easily alongside the things that shake us to the core.
Yes, this is a post about 2016, a classic “year in review” run-down, a “hey look at me, this is what happened in my life” kind of post. Because this is my website, so I can do this sort of thing. If you have a website, maybe you can do the same. If you don’t have a website, you could even do this on a piece of paper. The point is to find the clarity in the messes, the good among the catastrophe, and the pattern that flows through the chaos.
Danielle LaPorte posed five questions to herself, and they seem like good ones to ask as I reflect on the past year. So I’ll go ahead and borrow them — here they are: Continue reading “Year In Review: Really?”