Do You Have a Healthy Relationship With Food?

relationship with food

As you know, animism is about living in relationship with everything. One thing that we westerners often don’t have a great relationship with is food. Here are some things to think about to guide you in this area.

Do You Grow, Forage for, or Hunt Your Own Food?

Where does your food come from? Do you participate in creating, acquiring, or preparing it? How much skin do you have in that game?

The closer you are to the process of food production, the more you know what it costs to feed yourself. It’s more than just dollars and cents. It takes time to grow plants. Plants and animals need care. Something has to die so that you can live. We all depend on each other for survival. When you grow your own food, gratitude for the sunshine, rain, and decomposers (for compost) flows effortlessly because you know that you’re all in this together.

When you hunt, trap, snare, or fish for food, you pay attention to the animal populations. If their numbers are down, you go hungry. So, it’s important that they have an abundant, clean habitat.

In my opinion, the closer you are to the raw food source, the more likely it is that you have an authentic relationship with it.

Where Do You Buy Your Food?

If you don’t create or procure any of your own food, where do you buy it? Does it come from boxes and bags in the freezer section, or does it look fresh plucked from the ground? The more that your food looks like it did when it was growing, crawling, swimming, or grazing, the closer your relationship to it.

Do You Prepare Your Own Food?

The more hands on your life is, the more personal and meaningful it is. It’s the difference between making a baby blanket and buying one. It’s the difference between cooking your own dinner and getting take out.

No judgment is implied here. It’s fantastic when someone else does the cooking and we get a break. And when we cook our own food, we know where it came from, whether it’s fresh and clean, and if it’s healthy.

When it’s cooked with love, I believe it’s also healthier. I have a friend who owns a restaurant. Everything he makes tastes better. I can’t say why other than he cooks with love. So maybe you want know your ingredients and cook with love.

Is Your Unconscious Getting in the Way of Your Food Choices?

Lots of us have unconscious drives around food that only make sense to us. If we have a big appetite, but feel shame when others seem to eat like birds, we may have problems with eating on the sly or binging. Or we may restrict food intake to fit in. If our parent showed us love with treats, we may have learned that eating sugar is a way to give self love or comfort. Did someone make fun of your physique? That could also cause guilt, shame, and behavioral challenges around food. There are so many things that can get in the way of conscious eating. Fortunately, there are ways to become more self aware.

Do You Have a Trauma History?

Humans need food to survive. Our bodies can tell us what we need and when we’ve had enough if we listen – as long as there is no trauma history. Trauma is a game changer. It creates a cascade effect that impacts the survivor on so many levels. It slows down the digestion so food doesn’t move through the system as fast. This can lead to constipation, feeling full, and not feeling hungry. The longer you go without eating, the harder it is to start eating normally again. Maybe you have a sensitive stomach or don’t ever get a sensation of feeling full.

After trauma, the gut also stops producing adequate melatonin (so we don’t sleep), serotonin (so our mood is dysregulated), as well as other hormones and neurotransmitters. This negatively impacts our energy level, focus, concentration, memory, mood, immune system, and distorts our hunger signals and attitudes around food! Who knew?

Do You Have a Lot of Rules Around Food?

Are there certain foods that you won’t eat? (This is a reasonable thing if you have allergies or medical reasons for the restrictions). Does the clock tell you when you can and can’t eat? If you overdo it, do you have to make up for it in the gym or by cutting back the next day? Rules are about control. When something needs to be tightly controlled, it may not be all that healthy.

Are You Obsessed With How You Look or the Number on the Scale?

Do you measure food portions, spend a lot of time in food prep, and researching recipes? Does food, measurements, weight, or how you look dominate your life? Would you skip out on an event (like a pool party or wedding) because you’re afraid that you won’t look good enough in the appropriate attire?

How’s Your Relationship With Your Body?

I keep saying “listen to your body,” but how’s your relationship with your body? Are you even in it? Can you feel it? Do you love it? If you are not embodied, how do you know what your body is saying? Having a healthy relationship with your food depends on having a healthy relationship with your body. You can’t fix that by being thin, pretty, having surgery, or eating more or less. That comes from self acceptance.

Not So Healthy? Here are Some Ideas to Change That

If you’re reading this and feeling a little uncomfortable, perhaps it’s time to change your relationship with food. Here are some tips to get started on creating a healthier attitude towards food. Feel free to share your ideas in the comments too.

  • Get your hands dirty. Get involved in cultivating, acquiring, harvesting, and preparing food. Do it with love and appreciation. You can’t know a thing that you don’t see clearly. Having a hands on relationship with food will remove a lot of distortions.
  • Don’t cook? Learn! There are many free cooking channels on Youtube. You don’t need to become a chef, but having a few functional skills and a couple signature dishes will increase your self esteem and improve your relationship with food – if you cook mindfully and with love.
  • Find out where your food is coming from. I live around a lot of farms that sell food at farmer’s markets. They offer tours (virtual now) so that people can see the living conditions of their animals and see what’s in season. It makes food personal.
  • Listen to your body. It will tell you a ton! Probably more than you ever thought possible. Maybe you don’t really want food, you want affection, mental stimulation, or to feel more comfortable with what’s going on. When you become aware of your real needs, you can meet them more effectively. And don’t feel guilty if your body says, “I want to enjoy this gelato with my friends!” Do it up.
  • Throw away the “good” and “bad” labels for food. Yes, some food is more healthy than others, but when we call things “bad,” that’s our cue to feel guilt and shame. Eating is normal! We all need to eat. Let’s not make it a bad thing.
  • Chill out on the size/weight shame. Love yourself at any size. Everybody isn’t born to be skinny. People come in all shapes and sizes. It’s okay.
  • If you have a trauma history, consider seeing a trauma therapist. I say a “trauma therapist” because counselors who are not trained in trauma may not be skilled enough to help you. It’s a complex issue that can’t be talked away or prayed away.
  • Do you need therapy for issues other than trauma? There is no shame in that. We all need support and to upgrade our skills. A good mentor, therapist, counselor, or friend can make all the difference in life.
  • Guidelines around food are good. Rules may be a bit overbearing if they are running your life. One day we will all leave this earth. Nobody is going to care about how well you did on your diet or how much you weighed. If you live well and love well, they will remember that.

When it comes down to it, how you do anything is how you do everything. If you approach food mindfully, you don’t need a lot of rules or experts to tell you what to do. Trust your own judgment. Engage with your food. Listen to what your body says about that engagement, and follow your gut. You’ll do just fine.

How to Make Dandelion Jelly

dandelion jelly

I am sure you know about all the many medicinal and magical uses for everybody’s favorite herb, dandelion. But did you know you can also make dandelion jelly? Yep! It tastes like honey, so you can use it as a honey replacer and get all the yummy benefits of dandelions in your diet.

And it’s easy and fun! Ready to get started?

Ingredients

  • 3 cups fresh picked, unsprayed, densely packed dandelion *blossoms 
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1 box powdered pectin
  • 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 t. vanilla extract (optional)

Rinse the blossoms and cut off the stems and any green parts. The green parts are bitter and you don’t want them in your jelly.

Bring the water to a boil. Add half the blossoms. Stir and cover for 20 minutes. Turn the heat off and let it rest for 20 minutes.

Strain the blossoms and return the water to the pot. Return to a boil. Add the remaining blossoms. Cover. Turn off the heat and steep for 15 minutes.

Strain squeezing the blossoms to extract all the water.

Return the water to a boil and add the remaining ingredients. Stir to dissolve sugar and pectin. Boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat.

Store in sterilized glass jars in the refrigerator.

Notes:

  • when wildcrafting, take only what you need so that there will be plants for the future. Calculate to take not more than ten percent of the total plants in a given area.
  • Dandelion jelly has the consistency of honey, not jelly.
  • Jelly will keep for a year.

Two Immune Boosting Garlic Recipes

immune boosting

You don’t have to run out and get some fancy schmancy immune boosting concoction. You probably have the ingredients in your kitchen to make two potent immune boosting garlic recipes right now. In this article, I’ll show you how to make garlic honey and garlic vinegar. It’s so easy, you will wonder why you haven’t done it before now. But first, let’s talk about the benefits.

Benefits of Garlic

Raw garlic is a powerhouse when it comes to maintaining health. Research focuses on its positive impact on

  • Anti-bacterial effects
  • Anti-viral effects
  • Anti-fungal effects
  • Antioxidants
  • Blood pressure
  • Cancer prevention and care
  • Cardio vascular care.
  • Cholesterol
  • Memory improvement

It’s no wonder it’s been used medicinally for over 1,000 years. You can even use it in the garden to keep bugs away.

Some say the purple skinned garlic is the healthiest.

Benefits of Honey

Ancients used honey as a food and a medicine. While it’s low in vitamins and minerals, it’s high in bioactive plant compounds and antioxidants. The pollen that the bees consumer impact the health benefits. Generally speaking, the darker the honey, the more healthy it is.

The antioxidants reduce the risk of stroke, heart attack, and some types of cancer. Honey may help reduce blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglycerides. Putting honey on wounds and burns speeds healing. You’ve probably heard of honey cough syrup, right? That’s because it suppresses coughs.

Benefits of Vinegar

Vinegar has been used for at least 7,000 years for food and medicine. Some claim in lengthens life, heals the gut, improves hearing, mental powers, and vision.  It’s also used to keep skin and hair healthy.

How does it do this? It’s packed with amino acids, healthful enzymes, and trace elements.  It contains more than thirty needed nutrients, a dozen minerals, and several Vitamins, essential acids, and enzymes.  Additionally, it’s a great source of calcium, chlorine, fluorine, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, silicon, sodium, and sulfur.  The body requires 22 essential minerals for health and 19 of them are found in ACV!

How to Make Garlic Honey

You need a small glass jar with a lid, raw honey, a head of garlic, a garlic press, and a knife. (The best place to get raw honey is at your local farmer’s market).

Separate the head into individual cloves. Cut off the hard ends. Place the cloves on a cutting board and gently press with the knife to crack the skin. This will make them easier to peel. Once the skin are removed, put the cloves in the garlic press and crush them. Crushed garlic releases more of the healthy compounds. Let rest for fifteen minutes.

Combine the garlic and honey in the jar and screw on the lid. Let it sit for 3-5 days before using. Eat a clove per day to maintain health.

How to Make Garlic Vinegar

You will need a quart size glass container, raw apple cider or Chinese rice vinegar and five heads of garlic. (You can reduce the recipe to make smaller amounts). Break garlic into cloves and cut off the dry ends. Remove the skins. Crush with the garlic press. Place the garlic and vinegar into the glass jar. Shake and let it rest in a dark place for at least two weeks. After two weeks it’s ready to use. After a month, you can discard the garlic and continue to use the vinegar.

To maintain health, drink one teaspoon per day in water after a meal. If you are sick, take two tablespoons mixed with warm water three times a day until you are feeling better.

Taking it straight can erode the enamel on your teeth. You can also use it in salads, but you don’t want to warm it as heat can destroy the benefits.

Prevention is the best medicine. These two immune boosting garlic recipes are easy, inexpensive so anyone can do this.

Why You Should Consider Planting Heritage Seeds

heritage seeds

There are three different types of seeds: heritage seeds, hybrids, and GMO. Heirloom or heritage seeds (the terms are used interchangeably) are open pollinated. This means that they will either self pollinate or will be pollinated by birds, animals, wind or other natural means. The offspring will produce plants that are like the parents. In order to be called “heirloom,” they must be at least fifty years old.

Hybrid seeds combine the qualities of one plant with the qualities of another to get specific, desirable characteristics. These plants do not create offspring that look like themselves. For an animal example, a Rhode Island Red rooster that is bred to a Barred Plymouth Rock hen will result in a black sex link. The black sex link is the hybrid. However, if you breed two black sex links, they will not create other sex links.

Seedless watermelons are a plant example of hybrids. If your plants look very uniform and picture perfect, they are probably hybrid seeds. If they are seedless or sterile, they are hybrids.

GMO stands for “genetically modified organism.” Plant seed DNA is altered to have characteristics that it did not have previously. Genetically modified corn, for example, is designed to have a bacterial toxin (Bt) grow inside each corn kernel. While Bt attacks corn’s greatest predator – the corn rootworm – and help to get a better crop, the side effects when eaten are things like severe food allergies, infertility, and cancer.

Benefits of Heritage Seeds

Since they produce seeds, you can collect your own seeds from the parent plants rather than buying new ones each year. This saves you money.

They taste better. Garden grown vegetables are always more tasty than hot house grown food. That’s why we flock to farmer’s markets as soon as the produce starts pouring in. But heritage seed grown plants are even tastier still. Don’t take my word for it. Try it for yourself. This is probably the top reason that people choose heritage seeds.

Heritage seeds produce more nutritious plants. With poor soils and ineffective fertilizer practices, this is a big deal. Our food is no longer all that healthy. Planting heritage seeds is one link in the chain to turn that around.

Heritage seeds produce plants with more variety. They don’t look perfectly uniform and don’t ripen all at once so you don’t go from having no tomatoes or cucumbers to having them coming out of your ears.

Heritage seeds may be more sustainable. Nature created these plants over thousands of years. They are likely to be more drought, disease, and pest resistant. This contributes to food security.

What’s the Downside?

Okay, we have to be fair and look at the downside. If there were no downside, there would be no motivation for hybrids or GMOs. Heritage seeds produce plants that are probably not going to be as visually attractive. They may not travel as well over long distances. They may also be more prone to disease and have lower yields. Usually none of this matters to a backyard gardener, but it’s good to know that your results will be different.

 

Two Butternut Squash Recipes for Autumn

butternut squash

Eating seasonally is one way to stay in tune with nature. Butternut squash is a great fruit to add to your autumn menus. It is high in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. It has the added bonus of being low in calories, so this can help with weight loss. Here are two recipes to get you started.

Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 large butternut squash (about 3 pounds), halved longways with seeds removed
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 large shallot bulb)
  • 1 t. salt
  • 4 garlic cloves, pressed
  • ⅛ t. ground nutmeg
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 to 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 T. butter

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Lightly coat the inside of each squash half with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place squash open side down on a baking sheet and roast for 40 -50 minutes, or until the insides are soft.

Remove from the oven. Allow to cool for about ten minutes or until they can be safely handled.

As the squash is baking, cook shallots and garlic in remaining olive oil until soft.

Remove squash from the shells. Mix all ingredients together in a blender. You may have to do this in batches. Once everything is smooth and well combined, it’s ready to eat! If it has cooled down, reheat before serving. Enjoy!

Winter Squash Bowl

Ingredients

  • 1 medium butternut squash (about 1 1/2 lb.)
  • 5 small winter squash (about 1 lb. each; such as acorn, kabocha, delicata, sweet dumpling, buttercup, or sugar pumpkins), divided
  • 4 1/2 t. olive oil, divided
  • 3 t. pure maple syrup (optional), divided
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 1 T. unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 t. fresh thyme leaves

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut butternut squash in half crosswise. Set top half aside. Remove seeds and strings from the bottom half and discard. Place the bottom half of the squash on 1 baking sheet. Remove caps from 3 of the small squash by cutting a circle 1″ around stems with a small serrated knife (like you’re carving a pumpkin). Remove strings and seeds.

Cut a thin slice off the bottom of each of the 3 hollowed-out small squash so squash sits evenly on a flat surface; place (with caps on) on the baking sheet along with the bottom of butternut squash. Drizzle insides with 1/4 tsp. olive oil and 1/4 tsp. maple syrup. Season cavities with salt and pepper. Bake about an hour or until soft.

Meanwhile, remove stems from the remaining 2 small squash and cut the squash in half lengthwise. Remove seeds and strings from small squash and top half of butternut squash; discard. Peel and chop squash into 1/4″ pieces; place in a large bowl. Add remaining 4 1/4 tsp. oil and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake, stirring once, until squash is tender, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with the remaining 2 3/4 tsp. maple syrup, butter, and thyme. Use this to fill hollowed-out butternut and small squash and serve warm or at room temperature.

It’s Fall! Time to Grow Mushrooms!

grow mushrooms

It’s fall! Flowers and trees are dying back, but this doesn’t mean it’s time to stop gardening. No! It’s time to grow mushrooms! If you have a 10 x 10 shady spot, you can grow mushrooms.

Why Grow Mushrooms

It’s Fun

There is something very satisfying about watching life unfold. First there was nothing. Then there is something. Each day it changes until it’s ready to be harvested. It’s like the whole life cycle happening before your eyes. And you had a hand in creating it. Amazing.

They’re Tasty

Many mushrooms are edible. It’s also quite satisfying to eat something that you grew from scratch. This may open the door for you to experiment with recipes. So your diet may expand. If you feed them to your animals, they get healthier too.

They’re Medicinal

Mushrooms have a variety of health benefits. Whether you eat them whole, tincture them, or powder them and take them in capsule form, they can boost your health. You will want to check out the specific type that you are interested in growing to see how they help the body stay healthy. Some of the typical benefits are: immunity boosting, lowering blood pressure, lower cholesterol, helps to inhibit plaque build up in blood vessels, reduces inflammation, helps you age more gracefully.

They are Beautiful!

Mushrooms are like flowers. They are all so unique. They spread out in a variety of ways and make pretty shapes. If you want to ooh and ah in the forest, just let a mushroom catch your eye. You will be impressed!

Self Sufficiency

We all like to feel accomplished. When you can create your own food and medicine, you feel a lot more self sufficient. You learn a skill that actually has value. Who doesn’t want that? Not only that, you could even sell them and increase your income. That’s also a way to become self sufficient.

It’s Educational

Whenever we interact with Nature we learn something about life, ourselves, and other organisms. There is a whole world in the dirt that we never take the time to explore. Fungi are an integral part of the cycle of life. If you grow some, I think you will deepen your appreciation of the cycle and miracle that is life. Anything that does that is a fabulous way to deepen your animist practice.

They Help the Soil

Soil health is not just about composting and worms. Mushrooms help to break down nutrients and transfer them from organism to organism where they can be used. Mushroom compost makes an excellent growing medium for your vegetables and flowers. Food grow in this is healthier. Life relies on healthy soil.

They Clean the Environment

There have been many studies done on how mushroom can clean toxins from water and soil. They have removed heavy metals and even nuclear waste. Mushrooms to the rescue! If you have environmental concerns, mushrooms could be the answer. But here’s a tip. Do not eat the mushrooms that are grown for this purpose!

Is your interest piqued? I hope so! If you want to get started, here are some U.S. spawn suppliers where you can get what you need.

Fungi Ally – they sell plugs, grain and sawdust spawn. They have oysters, shiitake, lion’s mane, and chestnut mushrooms.

North Spore – they sell plugs, grain and sawdust spawn with lots of varieties of mushrooms

Field and Forest – they sell plug, grain, sawdust, thimble, peg spawn and have a huge variety of mushrooms to choose from

Too much? Want to start small and have mushrooms grown inside your house in ten days? Try this tiny grow kit.

If you are like me, you will quickly get addicted. I have wine caps, turkey tail, and oysters growing. Let’s share pictures and stories! Happy growing!

Six Ways that Mung Beans Boost Your Health

bean sprouts

I’m always quoting Hippocrates. “Let food be your medicine and medicine your food.” Choosing healthy foods slowly nourishes your body and keeps it looking and feeling good throughout your life. Some food pack a great punch, giving you more bang for your buck. Mung beans are definitely a great example of that. So let’s look at the ways that mung bean sprouts boost your health.

Aids in Weight Loss

Mung beans help with weight loss in a variety of ways. They are low in calories. They are high in fiber which can make you feel fuller and eat less. This fiber has the added benefit of reducing cholesterol levels and lowering blood sugar levels, so people with diabetes often add mung beans to their diet. Mung beans are a mild diuretic. That helps to reduce excess water weight. To boost the anti-diuretic action, use the beans in food and add cumin, parsley, coriander, fennel, and celery. In other words, try an Indian dish!

Helps to Detoxify the Body

Mung beans are used in Ayurvedic medicine to help detoxify the body. If you are experiencing bloating, fatigue, a white coating on your tongue, or in frequent or hard bowel movements, you could benefit from a cleanse. The best way to do this is with kitchari, which is a blend of mung beans and spices. You eat this with your food for at least ten days while avoiding alcohol, sugar, cold foods, and processed foods. This is not recommended for pregnant or nursing women.

Anti-aging Properties

Mung beans are high in copper. This keeps the skin looking wrinkle free and hair and nails strong and healthy. If you have heard the saying, “Black don’t crack,” this could be why. Mung beans are regularly consumed in places where people have melanin. So, it might not be the melanin, but the diet.

Strengthens Bones

Mung beans are high in calcium and Vitamin C. This helps to keep bones strong. This is especially important for older people, athletes, and those who drink sodas.

Keeps Gums Strong

If your gums aren’t strong, your teeth are vulnerable to disease. Mung beans contain sodium that the body needs to maintain gum health. If you have pain, bleeding while brushing, or a foul mouth odor, you could need sodium.

Keeps Eyes Healthy

Mung beans are loaded with vision promoting vitamins. They can help keep the retina flexible and adaptable.

Mung beans are packed with health benefits. These six are just a teaser to get you interested in natural medicine in general and mung beans in particular. Most people sprout the beans because in this stage of growth, the plant has many more health benefits.

If you choose to sprout your beans, be careful of bacteria growth! You can get sick if your plants get moldy. Also take it easy. You can also overdo a good thing and take away the health benefits. If you want to play it safe, just use mung bean paste in your food as a thickener or add it to smooties.  Or just go here where you can find lots of recipes to help you add mung beans to your diet.

Twelve Ways to Raise Your Vibration

raise your vibration

Everything vibrates at a different frequency. Everything has its own healthy frequency. When your body’s frequency is lower than optimal, you can feel dark, moody, stuck, irritable, and unproductive. This shows up in your outer world as sadness, lack of aliveness, love, and opportunity. It can bring a feeling of not being your true self.

This is a huge indication that you are not taking up enough space, feeling your feelings, following your heart, or making wise choices. Fortunately, if it’s that easy to throw your energy in a downward spiral, it’s also that easy to raise your vibration. So let’s talk about how to do that.

Declutter

To bring new energy in or move old, stuck energy, you need to have space. So start by moving things out. If you are in a cluttered environment, clean stuff out. Get rid of things you don’t need. This could be habits, material goods, people, or ideas. Everything has a shelf life. When something is no longer of use to you, it’s wise to let it go. If you chronically have too much stuff, it’s like dragging around a suitcase of things “just in case” when all you need is a bathing suit. Let the other stuff go. Travel light and lean. It will keep you in a place where you are always able to take advantage of the opportunities that are present now.

Healthy Food

Much of the body’s energy comes from what we put into it. If we’re eating microwaved, processed, sugary, dead foods, you can’t really expect to feel very vibrant and alive. Your body need fresh, alive, clean food and water to function optimally. Think of it this way. When your car has dirty gas or oil, it doesn’t run very smoothly, does it? The body is the same. High vibration foods create a high vibration body.

And remember this. You can’t supplement your way to health. We all have to eat. This is an easy way to raise your vibration every day.

Good Company

People are social creatures. We all need other people to share resources, create intimacy, stimulate our minds, and share in the joys and pains of life. When we are in good company, our body produces endorphins, those feel good hormones. This is energy! So get out there and spread some cheer. Not because you’re “supposed to.” That just creates stress and expectations. Do it in a way that makes your heart sing with people who are easy to be around. In other words, keep it real.

Dance

Dance is one of my favorite ways to raise vibration and keep it that way. Dancing combines movement, which your body needs, and music in a way that reaches you on a physical and emotional level. We all have four bodies – physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. Dancing hits two so it’s a double whammy.

Have you ever seen a child who just starts bopping when the music comes on? What happens next? The grown ups either start taking pictures, exclaiming how cute he is, or maybe someone laughs or tries to teach him how to do it better. Invariably it’s a response that conveys judgment. It says, “Dance for approval” or “Don’t dance.” So maybe the dance has gone out of you. Don’t let it!

Dancing is jubilant. It’s joyful. There are some cultures that say not dancing leads to dis-ease. So forget about rhythm, line, and what looks good. This is not about performance, seduction, or approval. It’s about letting your inner child play. Just put on some music and let your dance what’s in your heart. Let your chakras speak. Dance with your fingers. When you give parts of your body the space to speak, the stuckness leaves you. Sometimes it wants to say horrible things. Sometimes they speak sad things. Let them. This will make space for the joy to come in.

Song

Singing has similar benefits. If you are more of an auditory person, sing! Sing the sad songs that help you get in touch with your grief, longing, and pain. Sing until you have no more juice to give it. Then switch to songs that reflect where you want to be, what you want to have, and who you want to be. Draw that energy into you. Acknowledge and appreciate it when you see it in others. You can’t have what you deny others.

Like I said, everything has a life span – even grief. If you let yourself experience whatever it is, it will move on. You will get tired of singing the same old song and a new one will come in. Don’t worry about pitch. This is not an audition or job. It’s just about getting in touch with what’s inside. So let that stagnant old vibration go and raise your vibration to a new level.

Gratitude

Life is reflected in the yin/yang symbol. It’s always half light and half dark. That’s the nature of our universe. This means that, no matter what, there is always something to be grateful for. You’re walking past a million things every day that you just don’t notice. I promise you.

Take the time to see them. At first maybe you’ll find that you’re grateful for not being sick today or not having anything bad happen. Then you might start seeing how lovely the sky looks. Then you begin to live in a world where there are bursts of beauty like that every hour, then every minute. The more you pay attention and give thanks, the more you will see that there is to be thankful for. When your heart is full of blessings, you get more of them.

Random Acts of Kindness

Kindness raises your vibration. Kindness can’t come from a closed heart. You have to have a sweet idea and then act on it. Something as small as holding open a door or buying someone a cup of coffee says to yourself, “Hey, I am a good person.” Your heart radiates with that brightness and shines into the world. The person who receives it may also radiate. So your vibration lifts and so does theirs. This can spread much further than just the two of you.

Loving Kindness

Loving Kindness is a meditation that sends love to people – some of whom you may feel don’t deserve it. When you collapse the walls between you and others, your heart opens. It allows you to feel loving and equal to those who have wronged you, disagree with you, and also to those whom you currently feel are above you. If you don’t feel you deserve kindness, affection or love from someone who is “above” you or can’t love you, you won’t get it. This removes that. It makes space for healing to happen or miracles to happen. Who knows what may walk through your door when there are no barriers! A millionaire. A sweet soul. Someone who simply adores you just as you are, maybe?

Touch

Humans are wired for touch. When we’re babies, we can die without it. That’s how vital it is! And that doesn’t stop when we grow up. Skin on skin touch is healing. It soothes. So, cuddle. Wrestle. Get a massage. Get a puppy or kitten. Touch yourself. It’s all good. Touched people are calm people. (Just don’t forget to mind your boundaries!)

Get Lost in a Great Story

We don’t often think of storytelling as a way to raise your vibration, but it is. With tv and all the other stimulation we receive, storytelling is becoming a lost art. We are fed a diet of action, sex, and violence rather than human interest or fantasy that provokes us to look within. A good story fires up the imagination and takes us to new places. A good story teaches. It unveils what’s inside and allows us to see new possibilities. If you need to raise your vibration, download an audio book. Then sit back in a warm bath or hot fire with your feet up and listen. Or better yet, find a live performance and watch it live (or semi- live, there are lots of stories on youtube).

Color

Color has powerful energy. There are therapies that revolve around the use of color. If you look around you right now, what do the colors say about you and your mood? Are they safe colors that blend in with everything? Depressing colors with no life? Muted colors that tone energy down? Jewel tones that bring out the richness of life? How about brights that bring in sunshine? Or maybe they are the colors of of nature or the season?

If you don’t like the energy of the colors around you, change them. Experiment to see if you’re just doing what is comfortable. Habit inhibits growth. If you really think that you look great in grey, spice it up with accent colors. If you find it hard to sleep, maybe your room is too bright. You could even use the chakra system to determine what you think you need more of in your life.

  • Red is “I have.” It is for safety, security, and groundedness.
  • Orange is “I feel.” It’s for tolerance, sensuality, creativity, and optimism.
  • Yellow is “I can.” It’s for logic, humor, efficiency, self awareness, and self control.
  • Green is “I love.” It’s for openness, compassion, forgiveness, and acceptance.
  • Blue is “I speak.” It’s about communication, integrity, honesty, commitment, and endurance.
  • Indigo is “I see.” This color is for imagination, insight, peace of mind, focus, and inspiration.
  • Violet is “I know.” This is for universal love, spirituality, selflessness, and divine wisdom.
  • Magenta is “I am.” This is for emotional balance and energetic support.
  • Aqua is for working through grief. It merges the heart and words to allow it to express in a loving way.

Words

How do you express yourself? Words have vibrations too. High vibration words are things that make you feel good. Low vibration words are things that make you feel bad. When you have a lot of negative words flowing from your mouth, it brings your energy body down.

Now this isn’t a suggestion to ignore reality and only speak about positive things. It’s more about how you say what you’re saying. Curse words can always be eliminated. Those are always low energy words. “I am not feeling well” is not the same as “I am sick.” “I didn’t pass” is not the same as “I failed.” The first examples are more positive than the second because even though they convey the same information, the words describe what you want, not what you don’t want. You want to feel well. You want to pass. It might seem like splitting hairs, but they are hairs that add up to a big difference at the end of the day.

Most of these suggestions are absolutely free. Most of these require no additional time out of your schedule. If you want to raise your vibration, there is no reason why you can’t pick one or two of these suggestions and get started right now. Good luck!