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Travels and Teachers…How these things have changed my mind and my health and fitness routines

As you know if you have followed my blogs, I spent the majority of the last year travelling. I visited physical places such as America, the Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and India but I also visited places one cannot see or even aptly describe.

I visited places within myself, I discovered not only knowledge and traditions but also experiences and levels of my self I wasn’t sure existed. I became aware of my self, not just in the physical sense but I also leaned who I am on a more personal level and even where I am at spiritually.

I was pushed to my limits in so many ways, I accepted so many new challenges and jumped so far out of the comfort zone, I’m not even sure I have one any more. There were times I felt completely lost, physically and mentally and times I when I doubted everything I thought I ever knew about my body, mind and the world I live in.
But, through all these trials and tribulations I have discovered not only new methods, but new motivations, new mentalities and new meanings, leading to a revamp of almost everything I once practised.

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Yes some of my trainings are very similar on the outside, but my mentality has changed, my mind is in a different place before, whilst and after I train now. I spend time and efforts working not only on my physical workouts but also on mental workouts. I practise exercises for the mind, some for meditation and calming effect, for stress relief and centeredness. I practise exercises to activate parts of the brain we rarely use, discovering new abilities and connections between mind and body.

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I also practise cleansing techniques, for mind and body. Taking the time out of every day to look after every aspect of my well-being. I use a combination of Yogic practise, Taoist techniques and western ideas and methods at the moment, but who’s to say what’s next.

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Now this doesn’t mean I have gone completely soft, I still train hard and with regularity, I still use supplements and eat well. It just means I now have extra practises which enhance what I used to do, practises which make me feel more alive, more energized and healthier than ever before and yes, I am going to share my experiences and discoveries with you.

Not today though, today is a short introduction to what forthcoming blogs will entail. If you like the sound of what I have described and want to hear of the actual discoveries and practises, follow my blog over the following weeks to see my journey, to hear of my experiences and hopefully to ignite some curiosity for yourselves, to inspire you to do some more research and start your journey to a new you.

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Please note I will only be describing the actual practises I use myself, that doesn’t meant there isn’t much more to the systems I take my inspirations from.
For instance I practise some shatkarma (yogic cleansing techniques) but not others. I will describe my use of the neti pot and nauli, but I don’t go as far as practising vasti (colon cleanse) so I won’t comment on the use of this.

My blogs are my personal experiences, not all encompassing teaching of the full traditions and systems. A taster of some techniques, if you will. They are to inspire you to take a further step on your own path, a starting point from which you can take any direction you desire…Its a big old world out there, so many variable and interesting ways to look at things and do things, don’t just limit yourselves to the philosophies and traditions of your own country ,get out there and explore! Whether you go physically or just via information researched from your own home, it doesn’t matter, the path you take is your own.

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Filed under health, meditation, soul, tao, travel, yoga

My meeting with Taoism.

It seems, without realizing what I was doing, I have often been connected with Taoist practises. I have come across and used microcosmic orbit, I’ve practised self massage although more specifically for lymphatic system, or even on the whole body but not knowing where to focus my attention or why I was feeling better for It I have practised body brushing, mostly for my skin but also for the way it makes me feel. I have relied on inner smiling again without being specific to areas, to et me through some tough situations.

I have in many ways been channelling my chi without realizing that’s what I was doing.

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So I would say this is the reason I was drawn to the course which gave me my first knowing meeting with Taoism. Somewhere inside me I was searching, I was discovering in whatever way I could and the divine/fate/destiny, whatever you want to call it, gave me that last hint and put me on the correct path to discovery.

I heard about Taoist practises through my partner/ex (its complicated), he has been doing a rather monumental journey of self discovery and upon hearing about his experience with Taoist practices I was instantly drawn to this ancient way of life. Although of course his first experience was male orientated and focused purely on male practices.

I will just say here, although men and women do a lot of the same practise, we also have a variety of different focus. Of course we are physically, emotionally and often energetically different so the fine tuning to our feminine/masculine sides needs separate work. It would be very difficult for the man to use the infamous jade egg for instance 😉 ha ha or indeed to practise womb breathing! But even more subtle than this, Its important to be able to express our feminine/masculinity and learn in a way which celebrates our differences and allows us to tailor our practise to our energies and also to use our chi to help balance our hormones in specific ways. This is another aspect we often differ in our needs, or a lot of the time anyway.

Anyhow, I am running away from my own journey here. About 3 months ago I was having a terrible time, if you follow my blog you will have read/sensed the collapse of my world as I knew it and witness my rebuilding. Well it was during my strive to rebuild I was browsing the internet, and came across the jade circle website. Having clicked, I instantly knew I needed to take the course! In fat I signed up for two consecutive weekends doing the basic and next step courses.

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So…here I am!

I came to the magical green Isle of Ireland, and I met with the jade circle ladies last weekend. The connection with the ladies was fantastic, to be surrounded by such strong femininity and to be able to embrace and celebrate that so openly and unashamedly was such a mind opening experience.
It was as if we were already sisters, we shared so much including the start of an incredible journey into self discovery and…well I feel like I want to say control of ourselves and our lives, but in actual fact its more that we learned to lose the control, to allow the divine to guide us, to listen to our bodies, our intuition, our spirit and our chi, our life force, our energy.

We discovered ways of assessing our hormonal balance, how and when to balance the yin with the yang. We connected with our bodies and spirit, we learned all about healing sounds, self massage and womb/kidney breathing as well as some qi gong and microcosmic orbit.
We also connected with the jade egg, learned the first steps of practise with this and how to treat our bodies, to worship our sacredness and be the goddess we all have inside us.

OK so now I know I’m starting to sound a little…well…fluffy. It can’t be helped, Taoism is something best felt and not described. It feels anything but fluffy. It can be the most grounding experience, it makes you feel and see things which are very real. It really does help to discover the power we have within us.

And don’t worry guys, the men have just as profound practises and this weekend had a class of their own with Kris, Anamartas partner. Anamarta was the beautiful goddess who showed us the way in our first course via Jade circle (you can find them online and facebook).

Next weekend we meet as a mixed group to recap, to take the practises to the next level and to learn a little about the opposite sex, we must of course understand their energies as well if we are to have harmony in our relationships. Don’t worry though, you can just learn by yourself, if your partner isn’t ready to do the course of even if your single, the learning will benefit you immensely and prepare you for your next relationship. As well I must say that this system is useful for same sex couples as well. We all have yin and yang and every relationship has a balance of both, same sex couples may have the balance a little more evenly but the energies will still be there and can be worked on and understood.

I will write more about particular practises in future blogs, this was a general introduction on my introduction with Taoism.

Basically I feel like I have come home. This way of life really calls out to me and I intend to take this further, to journey as far as I can into this and maybe even one day help others find their connection to Taoist practises as well. Who knows what the future holds! 😉

Time to focus on the journey and on manifesting the life I desire, and am meant to live.

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Filed under adventure, advice, beliefs, challenge, change, Ireland, journey, tao, taoism, taoist

People…How well do we really know those closest to us?

I’m currently sitting on a coach on a 14 hour journey. I have been watching some TV series I downloaded with these friends, they are going through some intense stuff together and apart, from the viewers vantage point I can see who’s lying to who and for what reasons. I know Its not real, but it gets me to thinking how well do we really know those closest to us, how well do we know their intentions? How much do we taint, in our heads, to make situations more to our advantage? do we ignore signs to the truth? Do we lie to each other to protect them or ourselves? Or do we lie out of fear, or an inability to accept the truth? Are we all as lost as each other, and instead of being truthful and honest we are only keeping each other in the dark? Are any of us truly honest, with others or with ourselves?

Of course TV accentuates situations and people but when I look around me, really think about the people in my life, experiences in the past when things are revealed and I can’t help but wonder.

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There are people in my life whom I wonder about sometimes. All sorts of people, and I wonder what I mean to them, how much is real and how much is tolerance, how much is people keeping up appearances because its just how society tells us to behave… But I also wonder about my reactions to people, my tolerances. How many people do I truly relate to and want to know and how many do I just allow to stay in my life, never really caring enough to put much into the connection but feeling its rude to just cut them out, or maybe I don’t want to hurt people, or maybe its just that there’s no reason not to have them around so they stay.

Surely with life being a thing so short on time and precious, we should at least value it enough not to want to waste that time and energy, ours or anyone else’s. Should we not be more selective about how we spend our time and energies? What connections are worth nurturing and which have no future. Should we not spend time knowing ourselves and ensuring we are honest and true to our feelings and expectations towards people, in turn making it easier for them to understand and read where they stand as well?

The time I have spent trying to analyse what I mean to people, if anything. Are they worth the energies, or are they a waste of my time. I remember times in my own life when I have pushed away good people and lost great connections through confusion or immaturity and there are times I should have been more honest and ruthless with people, cruel to be kind and all that.

Why is it such a confusing matter, its one of life’s great woes. People, relationships, friendships. How do we get it right? We are all chasing the dream of having those perfect relationships, the partner with whom to spend our life, the friendships to endure lifetimes even the dynamics of work relationships are difficult to navigate, its like everybody’s playing some big game if poker, keeping their cards close to their chests, a lot of the time were not even sure if we have a winning hand ourselves yet so we bluff and bet our way through. But there are very few winners in poker.

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Surely there is an easier way? After thousands of years of evolution, I can’t help but think it so backwards that we are not more apt at connecting. Are we teaching our children the same poker tricks and faces and preventing evolution in this or is the lack of real connection evolution in itself? Is the future a place where its every man for himself, where people are as dispensable as a car, a home or a job. Will there be an end to truly deep connections?
This sounds like a very sad future indeed.

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Fighting the UK version of myself…

Since returning from travel, its like I’m a different person, all the changes I made to improve myself are slipping away again, I am regressing!

Whilst away travelling, I had no access to a TV, I had internet but only in specific areas and had interesting tasks so limited my time with them. When I did use the computer it was often for writing blogs, researching fitness techniques, networking or talking to loved ones.

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Upon my return I find myself getting sucked into the TV, not even watching anything specific. Watching my dad flick through channels, watching mindless programs of people falling over, or tacky sitcoms. I find myself sat on the internet, watching videos of cats, following menial conversations, trawling facebooks pages and posts and I even find myself taking time out to talk to people I’m not even bothered about being friends with, feeling like I must talk and be polite because they live near me…Um…why?

Why spend time having conversations you don’t want t have with people who don’t interest you, people with whom you have nothing in common? Why sit in front of the box watching people you don’t know live lives that aren’t real, why follow pointless ‘entertainment’ on facebook??
Is this our culture? Is this what it means to be British? Is this our go to response, particularly to winter? Too batten down the hatches and waste time until Summer once again arrives, and by Summer I mean those 2 weeks or so a year when its not rainy or cold.

Whilst away I managed to eat better, workout more often and with better progress, I learned more, I improved myself and now I feel it slipping away! This is not who I am, this is not who I am going to be!

I guess I figured I was deep enough into this new me to be able to keep it up but I was wrong, I am struggling but have ideas. I refuse to give in to monotonous old Kirst and this is how:

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Every time I turn on the computer, I endeavour to write a blog, this will often mean using my internet time more wisely to research a topic, it will mean engaging my brain every day!

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Each time a conversation starts, I will not reply on auto pilot…I will make the decision with regards to the person, are they someone I value, someone I can help, or someone with whom conversation is actually desirable? If not, I won’t engage, I refuse to bow down to social convention where we must reply just because its good manners, I realize this is probably a very British thing, being polite, well mannered and doing what is expected, well not any more.

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I am going to write goals in my daily journal, short and long-term and I am going to refer to them at the beginning of each day and ensure to plan my days with those goals in mind. These goals may be to do certain workouts, research workout, work or future options, to take time out to learn something new, practise my clubs, get creative, help my Dad with his renovating the games room or simply by taking out an hour to read, or meditate.

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Which brings me to my next point. I WILL meditate every day!! Whether its 5 minutes or 30 minutes, I will use my goal system to ensure to introduce workouts back into each day, starting with my morning Tibetan rights EVERY DAY. Making sure to do proper workouts, yoga and mobility. Within the month I aim to be back to practising Tibetan rights every morning and getting back onto my 4 day workout schedule, days 1 and 2 hard weight training, day 3 yoga and day 4 mobility, each one with a meditation session at the end.

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I will go back to making food plans, shop using lists from these plans and stick to them.  No more spontaneous eating as, when and what is there at the time.

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Lastly I will start making decisions again, it is time to stop wasting time wondering what my future will hold and start making that future happen. Every day I will do at least one thing towards that, whether its researching into jobs abroad, visas, and booking trips, or taking time out to stop and really thing through options and make decision and more importantly to stick to that decision. That’s not to say I can;t change my mind if circumstances change, we must be adaptable after all but it means no second guessing, I must trust myself. I am almost 30 and very capable of knowing what is right for me if I just stop faffing and trust in myself.

So there we have it, I will no doubt blog progress and developments as I go, if anyone has any ways they ensure not to let life pass by, or has the same issues, you are welcome to share, maybe we can help each other?

Its time to turn off the TV and turn on life!!

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Filed under 5 tibetan rights, battle, change, culture, development, life, Self discovery

5 Regrets From People On Their Deathbeds, Revealed By A Nurse

I had to share this, Its so true.  Too many of us go through life living as expected, by means we see as socially acceptable, performing rituals passed on through family, teachers, peers… but really the only person who has to live with your life is you.  You are the only person you need to answer to on your deathbed!   You must let go of these guidelines for life we feel we must abide by to be seen as a success and do the things that will fill our lives with positivity, experience and powerful emotions.   THIS is the true sucess of life, to live, love, laugh, do the things that add life to our years and memoories for our old age 😉

 

Whatever floats your boat, do it whilst your still seaworthy!

 

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via 5 Regrets From People On Their Deathbeds, Revealed By A Nurse.

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Lose everything…Find yourself!

Finding yourself…I process often starting with the losing of everything else.

Ever tried to make some journey of self discovery whilst your content in your home surrounded by good people with a good job, money in the bank?? No??? Well me neither.
I’m not even sure its possible, after all why would you even consider your not just a perfect reflection of your perfect little life?

I’m sure some people are content, settle, find enough things to keep them oblivious to the other versions of themselves, the strengths and character traits left undiscovered, but I am not one of them.

There have been several times in my life when things have just seemingly fallen apart, I hopped on a downwards spiral and in retrospect, it needn’t have happened. None of these times were out of my control…I subconsciously made decisions leading to these tough times, why??

Well I am currently working through one such time and it has just hit me. I am not a settler. I enjoy being happy, I am optimistic, I appreciate what I have when I have something good but I am also a dreamer…I want life, and lots of it. I want to experience and to feel and to grow as much as possible and that’s just not possible when your content!

Don’t get me wrong I don’t sabotage perfectly good aspects of my life, only the dead weight aspects, the jobs I don’t like anyway but they provide SECURITY, the relationships in which I don’t prosper but they provide COMPANIONSHIP, the materialistic gains I convince myself i need to provide COMFORT and ACCOMPLISHMENT..These things are difficult to let go of, they are programmed into us as ants and needs from a very young age and we fight to hold on to them…

But…

if you manage to let go, if you manage to free yourself from these preconditioned wants and needs you may well find yourself on a journey of self discovery, a journey bestowing much more than security, but freedom and strength,
More than companionship but the confidence to be alone in your own skin, and also the experience of and power to converse with, connect with and essentially bond with a multitude of people, to really know them, to open yourself up and find people with whom you bond on a deep and meaningful level.
More than Comfort, but growth and expansion of you, mentally, physically and emotionally
and lastly more than accomplishment, you aquire, memories, experiences, new skills and a new mindset which creates more dreams, a brighter future and the knowledge that anything is possible, you have done this, you have come this far, nothing is out of reach…

Of course you just have to give up almost everything you hold dear, make that leap of faith and go for it. Fortunately for me, my subconscious ensures I do this, I only have to make the journey, not the decision to do so. But for many they are more inclined to listen to reason, stick to what is ‘right’ and ‘safe’ and so miss out on opportunities which really are what life is all about.

I’m not saying everyone should give up thee things they love and run away to the other side of the world like I have, but maybe take some time to consider, really listen to that inner voice, open yourself up and feel, are you truly happy with the person you have become, do you have the potential to be more, do you feel life is passing you by? If this is you, then I am writing this for you.

This is scary, you will cry ALOT you will doubt yourself, you will doubt everything you once believed in, there will be hard days and there will be good days but its worth it because this is life, and this is what will make us the most interesting people in the OAP home! 😉

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Everyone needs a holiday, if only to get a little perspective on this thing we call life!

OK so my last post was quite some time ago, as you will see, my dears, I have been stuck I this crazy train of a life for a while and have been unable to gather thoughts of any sense.  I have been but a shadow of my self and am only now getting down to deciding who that shadow is again!
So August was my last entry, I was attempting to ‘win’ at this Philippine life, keep my head above water and, well, I lost!

After months, there was still no working visa, and no work even if it were to finally appear, The humidity and heat were making my boyfriend and I agitated, annoyed (ad annoying) and money issues were stressing the situation further, you can imagine we, naturally started adding relationship issues to the negativity that was our life!
We hadn’t managed to find places to go for peace, fun, interest…nothing! We were stuck, just the two of us and this big negative wedge!

In September we had a holiday to Vegas and upon leaving the Philippines, the feeling of a weight being lifted was immense! I immediately felt lighter, happier, and more like myself. As did the fella seemingly. We enjoyed our time and the whole thing really brought home how we can’t continue in this ‘life’ we had made. We agreed it was time to move on, brilliant!

That being said, we had slightly different paths, he wanted specific plans, I couldn’t afford, I wanted to go via the helpx route and we compromised, decided we were worth a shot at being together away from this place that had become a nightmare.

So I came to Australia, he to India and he was due to meet me here…Although time apart also gave us perspective on us. Although we care and had happy times ad could(and I believe will again one day) have more, we both needed to do some soul searching.
Sort out these issues we developed I ourselves but also with each other, we had bred the negativity so long the resentment and difficulties were too hard to ignore.

So sadly we have reduced our relationship. There is no label now but being free of that is good. This time should bring us back to being good people, versions of ourselves we like and are happy to be whilst getting to know each other again…new and improved versions and the who knows….

Maybe we will have experiences which will give us distance ad perspective enough to remember why we fell for each other and push us back together, I’d like to think so but, who knows, until we get that perspective from where we are now….
For now there has been a lot of change and revelations and just getting to grips with those is enough to be getting on with.

Time for some self discovery, I am after all doing this amazing thing called travel and doing it alone is both terrifying and exciting. One thing I know for sure is that I shall never be the same woman again!

So take that holiday, get that trip away booked, and take a moment to assess your life! Its so easy to get bogged down and trapped but you will ever be able to be truly happy unless you have been able to get a clear view….a bit of perspective and decide if your really living the life you want to.   Don’t live in the shadows, be sure to have life in your years, colour in your dreams and character to your person!

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Filed under adventure, Australia, battle, change, discoveries, holiday, life, moments, philippines, relationship, Self discovery, Uncategorized, wonderings