Purpose, Prosperity, Retreats, and Transformations!

The retreat (Purpose & Prosperity Mastermind Retreat) facilitated by my coach Paula Houlihan this weekend was the experience of a lifetime!  According to Paula, “A retreat is a time to come together in sisterhood, committed to the purpose of expansion, transformation and connection”.

Years ago, I had low self-esteem and felt unworthy.  I had issues around abandonment and rejection.  I was a care taker and sought approval from anyone.  I lived an overstressed, overwhelmed, and overworked life.  Sound familiar?  As if that was not enough, I have had several losses in my life including my parents, grandparents, niece, and my Identical Twin.  In the last ten years, I was blessed to have had good mentors, counselors and now, a fabulous coach!

I came to the retreat at Sundara Spa with an open mind and ready to relax.  The retreat was taking place at an awesome spa in Wisconsin known for their unique services.  I was treated like a queen!  My feather bed was turned down each night and a piece of organic orange and lavender caramel lay on my feather pillow.  I truly enjoyed the 8 Jet Body Spa Shower and the 75” Kohler whirlpool.  It was luxurious!  Pure decadence!

The spa cuisine was healthy, organic and artfully prepared.  The cuisine I indulged in included hummus, Spa Salad, Luscious fruit platter, veggie plate, yogurt, and a Sundara wrap with grilled chicken.  Of course, I had a glass of pinot noir with dinner.  Other delectable dishes included grilled salmon, Cornish game hen, crab cakes, house made guacamole, desserts, Australian lamb, and petite filet mignon.  The cucumber, lemon and orange water were terrific!  I especially love the cucumber water (water with cucumbers in it and what a flavor!).

Now that you know the decadent, nourishing, environment……….it is time to talk about the transformations! I made some great connections to brilliant women as we shifted and expanded together.  I shifted old beliefs especially about my body!  Janelle Maguire is an amazing talented photographer who brings out the brilliance and beauty in everyone!  I was so amazed at the beautiful pictures after the photo shoot.  For the first time, I saw my beauty in those pictures.  I looked radiant!  Now, how many of you can say that after having pictures taken?  An extraordinary photographer makes all the difference, hint….hint!

My soul expanded as did my vision and purpose.  I am filled with love and light and ready to serve women on a whole new level.  My beliefs around money and self-worth were transformed.  My spiritual Goddess has emerged!  I am ready to share my gifts with the world and be visible!  I assist women in eliminating their bandaids (drinking, drugs, overeating, workaholic, shopaholic, etc…) by transforming their fears, stress and negative beliefs into self-love, peace and joy.

My soul is alive and filled with love!  The colors of the rainbow are dancing in my spirit as my heart sings with pure bliss, knowing I am on my path and making a difference in the world.  I am filled with love, gratitude, passion, and joy.  How blessed I am for connecting with my kindred sisters soul to soul in this magnificent transformational journey!  Blessings to All!!!

If any of this resonates with you, please share in the comments below!  I would love to hear your thoughts.  If you have a kindred sister who could benefit from this post, please share!

Seven Healthy Habits for Clean Eating

I am here to share with you

.  Millions of people are overweight and dieting.  Many people have health problems such as obesity (BMI 30 or above), high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.  If you don’t know what your BMI is, go to Google—put in BMI Calculator.  When it comes up, put in your information and heaven help you if your number is 30 or above.  Statistics show that for many Americans genetics only plays a 10% role, exercise a 10% role and what you eat plays an 80% role in your health and shape.  This is good news.    How many foods in your kitchen are over-processed especially with white flour and sugar?  Do they have preservatives?  Artificial sugars?  Saturated fats or trans fats?  Colas and juices with lots of sugar?  Cookies, cakes, chips or other junk food?  Calorie dense foods containing little nutritional value?  Take an inventory of your pantry and refrigerator.  Great now let’s do a Spring Cleaning and talk about the rules of clean eating.  This isn’t about another diet or even depriving yourself.  It is a lifestyle change in learning to eat healthy and clean.  It involves planning healthy meals for the week, but first you must develop healthy habits.

Habit #1:  Eat six meals per day, one every three hours.  I know it sounds unbelievable and it is the opposite of what most popular diets tell you, but eating better foods more frequently actually increases your metabolism and keeps your energy levels high all day.  Eating small meals throughout the day will also stabilize blood sugar levels and cravings will stop.  When you eat just three meals a day or less, your sugar levels dip and you are more likely to eat unhealthy snacks.

I like to compare metabolism to a wood burning fire.  As long as you keep putting wood on that fire, the fire is going to do what?  That’s right keep burning.  If you quit putting wood on that fire, what is going to happen?  That’s right it is going to go out.  This is just like metabolism.  If you try to starve to lose weight, your metabolism is going to come to a screeching halt or slow weigh down.  Then when you do eat, your body is going to store and hold on to every ounce for dear life.  So it is best to feed your metabolism every 3 hours or so to keep it going.

Habit #2:  Never skip meals, especially breakfast.  How many of you skip breakfast?  The research shows that people who skip breakfast, they gain more weight.  You think you are saving on calories, but skipping breakfast will lead you to snack before lunch or overeat at lunch because you are hungry.

Habit #3:  Don’t eat calorie dense foods that offer no nutritional value.  Processed and fast foods such as French fries, chips, donuts, cookies and candy are a nutritional wasteland.  The calories in these foods are considered “empty” because they give you a quick burst of energy but no vitamins, nutrients or natural ingredients.  You usually have a sugar high followed by a crash that leaves you without energy and feeling hungry soon after.  These foods tend to generate cravings for even more energy calories because you never really feel satisfied.

Habit #4:  Think about portion sizes, not calorie counting.  It is important to keep in mind how much fuel your body really needs.  Most portion sizes in restaurants like applebees, and chilis are nearly twice the size of a true serving.  I always ask to have half of my entrée served and the other placed in a doggie bag.  You could order salads and appetizers, but you have to be careful of which appetizer you order!  Fried cheese curds are yummy; however, they are fried and contain a lot of fat.  At home, it is easy to clear your plate or eat that last little bit in the pan to avoid leftovers which is in effect overeating.  And, it is never just a little bit!!!  So, here are some guidelines…..a serving of protein should fit in the palm of your hand or roughly the size of a deck of cards.  A serving of complex carbohydrates from grains should fit in the cup of your hand.  While a serving of complex carbs from veggies should fit in the palm of two open hands.  Fruits should fit in one open hand.

Habit #5: Drink a minimum of 8 glasses of water a day.  How many of you do this?  I am not talking about coffee or soda.  Staying hydrated is essential for good health as 80% of our body is water.  When you are low, you will show symptoms such as fatigue, irritability, headaches and constipation.  Now, if you are one of those people who think water is boring and you don’t like the taste, you can flavor your water.  Cut up some lemon, limes or oranges and put them in your water bottle.  It doesn’t take a lot to infuse flavor and antioxidants.  If strawberries are on sale, you can add these to your water.  Just make sure you take out the strawberries within 48 hours as they are not acidic and can grow bacteria.

Habit #6:  Eliminate sweets from your diet especially white sugar.  Candies, cakes, cookies and ice cream are obvious.  However, sugar has a way of sneaking in the most seemingly healthy snacks and is often the reason you can’t lose those last pesky 5-10 pounds.  Examples include sweetened yogurts, processed peanut butter, granola, protein bars and canned fruits in syrup.  Many condiments and salad dressings contain sugar or high fructose corn syrup that stop your progress in its tracks without the sweet taste!

Habit #7:  Eat fruits and veggies.  Clean eating does not have to be boring.  Processed foods seem healthier because of all the unhealthy ingredients and fats.  Your taste buds will recalibrate by the intense flavor of food without artificial ingredients.  Some of my favorite nonfat condiments that heighten taste include fresh and dried herbs, horseradish, garlic, mustards, ginger, vinegars, Worcestershire sauce, citrus fruit, freshly made salsas, pureed fruit and veggie based sauces, unsweetened apple butter or sauce, Bragg’s, and low sodium tamari or soy sauce.

Now, there will be distractions and you will make mistakes.  We all do.  It is how you deal with those mistakes that will determine your success.  Where did you line up with these 7 habits?  Do you need to Spring Clean your Pantry and Fridge?  Do you need to find an accountability partner?  If you need help with this, see me afterward and we can talk about this.  Remember, HABITS can change.  It takes about 21 days to create a new habit.  You can do it.

For more information on losing weight and tips on clean eating check out this seminar https://extraordinarywellnesscoaching.leadpages.net/cl-webinar/

A Soulful Journey of Change with Confidence

By Lauren Ebbecke ©2012

It is Fall…. that time of year when leaves change color, the air turns colder, and days are shorter.  It spells CHANGE.  I have spent many an Autumn thinking, talking and dreaming of what my life might look like  “if       only…”.  If only I would exercise regularly, if only I would stick to eating healthy, if only I could find a job I truly love, if only I could find time to meditate, if only I could find my ”NorthStar”, my true calling, or  life purpose.  My intentions are good and I always start a routine.  Somehow time passes by and I am still searching for my dream…….

Ever feel like this?  This was the year I set my intention and decided to take action.  This was the year I quit my full-time job and began to fully create the life I have always dreamed of.  I was listening to my inner soul.  Yes, my intuition.  The fears come up, the negative voices come up, the challenges are there and yet, I continue on my path to a better life and to self-discovery.

I have never looked back and I am happy.  I have more time to spend with my beloved dog, Sage as well as friends.  I eat well, sleep well, and exercise.  I am investing in me.  Women tend to nurture and support everyone else around them, but we are not good about investing in ourselves.  We are also not confident in our decisions and especially with CHANGE.  Better yet, do you have the courage to change or step out of the box?  Our sandbox has become our comfort zone and we must step out of the box in order to grow.  So here are five tips to embrace change.

1.  Get Clear and set an intention.   Get clear about what you want to change and why.  Then set an intention to do so.  Make the intention simple.  My intention this summer was to find a part-time job that I enjoyed and could pay my bills, and then I would resign from my stressful full-time job.  Of course I had to define jobs that I would doing short term.  I got very clear as to why I wanted to leave my job and what type of working environment I wanted.  I said my intention out loud every morning and before I went to bed.

2. Be prepared for those old Habits and Mindsets.  “So you think you can really pull this off?  What will your friends say? Family?”  “I am not good enough” or “You should be perfectly happy as you have a decent job”.  Ah yes, the wonderful ego that tries hard to protect us.    One of my coaches said, “if your gut tells you yes, but you feel the fear…..do anyway”.  One of my favorite books is “Feel the Fear, Do it Anyway” by Susan Jeffers.

3.  Don’t Criticise yourself.  We are our own worst critics and we often think things are worse than they really are!!!  We want to be liked and fit in.  when something feels uncomfortable, our panel of judges arise to let us know that we aren’t doing the “right way” or the “way our elders did it”.  Acknowledge your shadows.  I typically say “I hear you, but I am choosing to better my life”.    I got that line from my mentor Christine Kane and it has proven to be one of the most powerful affirmations in my life.

4.  As the old zen saying goes, “Leap and the Net shall appear”.  Yes, this was another saying from my mentor that has served me well.  Women who take risks will grow and move ahead.  As Albert Einstein states, “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”.  So make a change and if it doesn’t feel good or it is not the right one, CHANGE it.  Yes, you can make another change!  This leads me to the next tip.

5.  Fail Forward!!! Too often when we make mistakes, we tend to blame ourselves or think poorly of ourselves.  We are not our mistakes.  Remember the Law of Attraction:  You attract the energy that is most like you.  In this case, Like Attracts Like!!!  So practice affirmations and feelings of abundance and success.  Successful people pick themselves up and keep going forward knowing they are not their mistakes.  As someone once said, “What you think, you are”.  Monitor your thoughts.  What are you thinking right now?  Is it positive or negative?  Think positive and fail forward.  Practice courage and confidence.



What changes have you made lately?  I would be interested in reading about them.  Feel free to leave a comment below.


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