Wherever my Soul Takes Me

I am the type of person who is always looking for the next place to travel, the next place to lay my head while I learn more of my holistic trade, help others, and write more poetry and stories. I am what most people call a nomad, wanderluster, a wandering hippie who wants to learn everything, see everything, and heal everything. And that is exactly who I am. I am constantly thinking about the next place I want to travel to, and experience the culture surrounding the area. It is in my bones, in my skin, in my heart, and in my soul. This is why I keep a handful of things with me, just a duffel bag of clothes and books, and a backpack.

For three years, I lived in New Mexico, in Taos for a good portion, and Albuquerque for a brief period. While I lived there I ended up going numerous adventures, one long weekend I got in my car and went to Utah and Arizona, and trust me it was amazing. I went to Colorado on numerous occassions to see family and friends, I traveled to Oklahoma to see my parents and younger brother. And at one point I went to California and had a great time. Now, I currently live in Alaska, situated next to Canada, above Washington, and a flight away from New Zealand and Japan. And right now, I can’t wait to see where my soul and feet take me next, because I live for adventures.

When you are nomadic at heart, you are bound to have endless adventures. And there is nothing wrong with that, because that is the soul you were born with. Where do you like to travel? Do you like going on long trips to unknown destinations?

Reconnecting With Yourself

There are times where we need to unplug from our electronic devices, get away from the internet, and the social media wars that seem to plague everyone across the world. The reason for this is to reconnect with ourselves, continue our own growth, and get back to the core of our own being. That is what I have been doing for the past two months, I had rarely made any posts on here, or on any of my social media accounts, because I wanted and needed to reconnect with myself and see where I was going, to see if I was growing in any sense of the word (except for height, because I am always going to be short).

Stepping away from the internet helped me, because I was able to focus more on my poetry, on myself and heal. Knowing that I was starting to become a slave to my electronic devices, I set them aside, and started to focus on myself and see what it was that I needed to do in order to grow more spiritually, personally, and career wise. Plus, I needed to focus on my health. During the two months of not only posting anything, I also ended up not really speaking to many people that I know, this is also due to a fact that I needed a break from socializing, because I was being drained. Drained of my energy, and drained of any thoughts that I harbor. And it was slowly making me depressed and unable to focus on a lot of things.

After spending time by myself, meditating, healing, and just focus on my own well being for a change, it made me happier, and made notice that we all need to make time for ourselves more than just an allotted time each day. And so now, after taking those two months, I figured out how each person, child, woman, or man can create more time to just reconnect with themselves even if they are on a tight schedule and cannot devote an entire month to themselves.

Each morning when you are getting up, or helping your children get ready for school, create a drink  to your liking for each season (hot chocolate or coffee for fall or winter, smoothies or iced tea for spring or summer), to go along with your breakfast. Sit together, you don’t have to speak to each other necessarily, but sit at the same table, and enjoy  the silence or put on some light music, while you prepare yourself for the day ahead. For lunch time, sit by yourself and enjoy your lunch while you read a book, listen to your iPod, or sit with your friends or colleagues and just enjoy a light conversation that doesn’t cause such a big stir (ahem, politics). When it comes to dinner, socialize with your family, talk about your day, enjoy your dinner. But after dinner, make that time for you, and you alone. Put on some music, write in your journal, meditate; just shut out social media for that time period. On your days off, go out into nature, embrace the beauty, the energy that she provides us, and take it all in. Because while you are walking through the hills, forests, mountains, or near by the ocean, your body is healing, your soul is healing. And that is what you are needing.

A lot of people don’t realize that they are needing some time by themselves, so that they can heal, can reconnect with themselves. And that is the problem with social media and the internet, it takes away that time, and instead uses its vortex of search engines and websites to drag you in further, keeping you away from what your body is needing, and what your soul is needing. Always make time for yourself to heal, to reconnect, because if you don’t then you won’t be able to help others. You need to help yourself first before you can help others.

Seeking Answers in Mother Nature

For the past month, I haven’t really written a lot of posts for this site, nor have I really posted anything on my social media accounts, due to the fact that I have been in the process adjusting to my new job, new town, and new state. On top of that, I needed the time to take care of myself, to focus on my health and mentality, and to dive into my art and dreams. 

We’ve all been there, a new place where things seem foreign, a place of isolation even if we know a few people there, a time where we feel a little bit lost and are looking for the right path for us to take, hoping that we can find some sort of guidance to help us out. That’s where I’ve been for the past month. Don’t get me wrong, I love Alaska, it’s truly magnificent and outrageously beautiful. But there has been a few moments of, “is this truly where I’m supposed to be right now?” And so this past month, I had been going out into nature, talking to Mother Earth and seeking answers to my questions, and she answered. 

Being linked to Mother Earth, Father Sky, and my ancestors that roamed around the forests, hills, and mountains, it keeps me grounded, and gives me the ability to receive answers in my dreams. Sometimes they don’t make sense when I’m having the dream, but once they become reality, then I completely understand what they were trying to tell me. And that was what I was dealing with, I had received the answers that I was looking for. 

Not only that, I have been focus on my health and well being, by eating a little differently, going out into nature more since I live just half a mile from a trail that leads up into the mountains. There I can breathe, just stand in silence, and just be happy and healthy once more. 

Sometimes, we just need to step away from our electronic devices, social media accounts, and websites to heal ourselves before we can communicate with others and help others.

The Minimalist Nomad: Traveling Lifestyle

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Recently, while I was working at the clinic today, a coworker of mine had asked me about my trip plans to Alaska (I am moving the first weekend of March). This had started a conversation that begun at 9 am and it is still proceeding. One of the questions had stuck out though.

** K: Are you flying or driving?
Me: I am flying.
**K: Nice. How many luggage’s are you taking with you?
Me: Just my backpack and my duffel bag.
**K: Wait…that is all? How much do you have?
Me: Not that much, actually. I travel light.
**K: What all do you own?
Me: A few outfits that I can mix and match, a set of pajamas my tennis shoes, winter boots, heavy jacket, a few books: 5 reading, 5 writing, some pens, feminine necessities, a deck of tarot cards, wallet, phone and laptop.
**K: Wait, that is it? I have a whole bunch of stuff in my house that I could never get rid of. How do you do it?
Me: I’ve never needed much. Just the necessities and a few things that I know I will definitely want to have on me.

(**Kept my coworkers name confidential for legal purposes.)

Traveling, for many seems like a daunting thing, due to the fact that you have to figure out what you are going to bring with you and what you are going to donate, throw away, or sell. Many times, people tend to develop attachments to inanimate objects and begin to feel as though they must save many things, making it hard for them to get rid of things down the road.

When it comes to traveling, you need to think about many different scenarios from flying to sailing to luggage prices and about what you actually need with you. You also need to think about the others that are coming with you, if you have children, and try to figure out exactly what they need to bring as well. With this much going on in one persons head, it can make you go crazy, and in the end, you wind up with a headache or a migraine over this whole thing.

Minimalism is a Zen-living style where you own less materials and objects, and focus more on yourself, family, and living life. As a society, everyone has been creating attachments to inanimate objects, making them seem like they are a big thing, and in which they are not. When you release the objects that you do not need, you begin to feel better, you begin to eliminate any discontent you have, you are able to live in the moment, able to focus on your health, pursue your passions, and you’ll be able to rid yourself of any excess stuff. Doesn’t that sound grand?

Living the minimalist lifestyle, especially while traveling, makes things a lot easier. From relieving yourself from excess objects, you will be able to enjoy life more, and focus on everything around you, instead of accumulating things.

What ‘Anne of Green Gables’ Taught me about Love and Relationships

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Ever since I was a little child I always had a book in my hand, I would take that book with me everywhere I went and read it while other kids were socializing with one another, don’t get me wrong, I would jump in mud puddles and play in the dirt just like any other child, I just preferred books more. The books I read as a child helped shape me to become the woman that I am today, and I am grateful for it. Most of the books were of romance, you know the old fashioned romance novels that still grace the bookshelves around the world, but are now in the back due to the recent BDSM novels 5o Shades of Grey taking the limelight.

Anne of Green Gables series is a perfect example of one of the romance-coming of age novels that I grew up reading as a child, and during the time that I had discovered about love, friendships, relationships, and learning about myself as well by reading these novels. And oh what a ride it was at such a young age to learn about that. And now, as a woman in my mid-20’s, I can look back on those novels when I need some reminding about what it is that I learned about love and relationships.

                                          Find someone who challenges you:

When it comes to academics, and some sports, I can get pretty competitive, that is just who I am by nature. However, I, just like everyone else, feel like I have to dumb myself down to just stroke a guys ego, but just like Anne Shirley, I will have none of that. At first Anne tries to best Gilbert, who is also very competitive, but in reality this whole competitive streak in the both of them, it just makes them both better, not only for themselves, but for each other.

Forget about your ideal suitor/dream person:

Just like everyone else out there, we all are attracted to specific types of people. For Anne, her ideal person was “tall and distinguished looking, with melancholy, inscrutable eyes and a melting, sympathetic voice”. That description is nowhere near Gilbert Blythe, even though he is her soul mate and one true love. For myself, my ideal person was, tall, rugged, tattooed, with soulful eyes and a deep, penetrating voice. I’m not saying you should settle, by heavens, no. Just remember, that your soul mate will look different from your ideal suitor, and that is okay. In the words of Anne Shirley, “I don’t want sunbursts or marble halls, I just want you.” Keep that in mind when you have finally met your soulmate/twinflame.

Relationship with your own bosom friend (best friend):

Everyone has a best friend (s), the one that we can go to for anything, and know that they will be your support system, while at the same time, make you stay grounded. Anne Shirley’s best friend is Diana Barry, whom she refers to “bosom friend”, they are inseparable and their friendships stays strong throughout the remainder of their lives. Having your very own best friend is one of the best feelings in the world, because you have found someone who understands your quirks, and loves spending time with you.

Letting Yourself Be Rescued:

For many modern women, they do not want to be rescued by a prince/princess on a shining horse, it is basically against everything that the modern woman stands for. But if you are like Anne Shirley, holding onto the bottom of the bridge in The Lake of Shining Waters, and your rival comes along wanting to help you get out….take it. There is nothing wrong with being saved once in a while.

Don’t be afraid to feel all of the emotions:

Being an emotional person is nothing to be afraid of, in fact, I am highly emotional, and perfectly okay with that. Because I feel for everything around me and in me. Anne’s emotions are well read between the lines, and to see the things she finds joy in and see how much Gilbert had hurt her, is truly remarkable. Because she is a human, she is allowed to feel these emotions.

Never take shit from boys:

When Anne arrives to the school on her first day, Gilbert is taken by her and wants to get her attention, so what does he do? He calls her “carrots” and pulls on her braids. And Anne’s response, she got up, cursed him, took a slate and smashed it over Gilbert’s head. It is humorous when you first read it, and still hilarious when you read it again, or even when you watch it happen when Megan Follows (as Anne Shirley) busts the slate over Jonathan Crombie’s (as Gilbert Blythe) head.

The first meeting:

The moment Gilbert Blythe lays eyes on Anne Shirley, he is smitten, as if it were truly love at first sight. But then his obnoxious behavior turns Anne away for some time, and he tries to get her attention again. Love at first sight is something that pretty much everyone dreams of, and I will admit that I have always been fascinated with the thought of love at first sight. For myself, I have never actually experienced it, but I don’t let that get me down. The first meeting can be over the top like Anne’s and Gilbert’s, or it can be something that you have only read or seen in movies, or even just by a chance encounter.

Sometimes it’s best to apologize:

Anne realizes that her actions against Gilbert were uncalled for, and that is when she gives him the sweetest and dearest apology ever to be written: “What a stubborn little goose I was…”, finally opening up that door that led to a beautiful friendship and romance.

 

Lucy Maud Montgomery, the author of the Anne of Green Gables series, created the characters of Anne and Gilbert to show the entire world about true romance and show that even Anne goes through the entire cycle of emotions as she learns her place in the world, in herself, and as a wonderful yet spunky daughter, friend, wife, and mother. Not only that, but Lucy Maud Montgomery created a man (Gilbert) that millions of women (and some men) had fallen for, and I was one of those women who had fallen for Gilbert Blythe. And if Mrs. Montgomery were here, I would give her a hug and thank her for creating such beautiful novels that I could relate to.

 

 

Those we Admire

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Some months ago I wrote about everyone having role models, those that we look up to in our everyday lives. And yes, it is true, we all have role models, those are the ones that we admire, the ones we wish to be like, and the ones who shape us to be who we are meant to be in our later years in life.

For the most part, one person might say that their mom or dad are their role models, another might point out a teacher or colleague, it doesn’t matter who it might be, it is just a well known fact that we all have role models.

Months ago, I had pointed out that my mother and my granny were my biggest role models, they are type of women that are strong, kind hearted, intelligent, and just two of the most amazing women in the world. Sadly though, my granny passed away when I was about to be 8 years old, however, she influenced me greatly in my early years, and I am honored by that. Another person I had mentioned was Laki Penan, a man who has been gone for nearly seventeen years after he disappeared while helping out a local tribe in Malaysia. He instilled the sense of humanity in me, his selflessness that he portrayed showed me that there are others out there that need help and need us all to help them.

One person that I failed to mention was a man by the name of  Ryōkan, a Zen Buddhist monk who lived most of his life as a hermit. He was known for his beautiful poetry and also for his calligraphy. Ryōkan, in many ways, instilled the lifestyle of Zen into my life, influenced my own sense of style of writing poetry, and showed me that being a bit of a hermit is not a bad thing. This man has influenced me greatly, with his quirky, eccentric way of life and poetry, and because of him, I’ve been molded in such a way.

Those we admire, are the ones we hold up with such high regards, the ones that we look to for guidance and are slowly molded in such a manner to which they’ve helped shaped us to be. Look at those who you admire, you will start to see the likeness between you and them, and then you see that you are molded in the ways of your role models.

Simple Life, Simple You: Minimalist Lifestyle

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We live in a society where all the ads on television and in the newspapers telling us that we need this item right now, telling us that we will be complete once we have obtained that said item. That being said, you will not be complete with whatever item the ad is trying to sell to you. Instead, you will be spending more money on something that you probably didn’t need anyway. The society that we currently live in is all about more; more food, more clothes, more toys, just more of anything, and for a few minutes there will be a glimmer in your eyes telling the rest of us and yourself that you are happy, but in reality you are not. So instead of coping with your hoarding hobby, you make your way over to the nearest strip mall and you start roaming through the aisles, looking for something to make you feel that “happiness” once again. But then you don’t find it.

As a traveler, blogger, and coach, I find myself in the same boat but only with books. Being a bookworm, I am always wanting more books, to fill some sort of emptiness that I have deep inside. But I know for a fact that even though I love books and that they make me happy for a period of time when I am reading them, I know that they will not fill that void. So I tell myself that I should only keep a certain amount of books for the next six months, and once I am done; I will get rid of the ones that I do not want to continue reading. It makes it easier for me, and not only that, it makes it easier for when I travel to my next destination.

Creating a minimalist lifestyle might seem daunting, but in reality, it isn’t that hard. It is just creating piles of things to figure out what it is you are going to keep and what you are going to throw away or donate.

Wardrobe: The wardrobe is the most common place for many people to hoard clothes. Most people will buy articles of clothing and never wear them, just to only sit in the closet or drawer to gather dust. Creating a minimalist wardrobe is easy, and you can still have your own style and flair to go along with it. Only having 25 to 30 articles of clothing (not including intimates: boxers, underwear, bras, swimsuits), makes it easy on you to have some fun to mix and match your clothes, and makes it easy for when you are traveling to go to weddings, visit relatives, or even go overseas. **If you haven’t worn the article of clothing within the past 6 months, then donate it, because in reality you might never wear it again.

Books: I know, all of you bookworms out there that are just like me are gasping for air because I have put this into this post. However, let’s be realistic, traveling and lugging around two or three suitcases of books is not ideal in any situation. Because I’ve attempted that once, it was a horrible mistake. Now, I keep only 15 to 20 books with me at all times, then twice a year I go through them and look over them to see which ones I don’t want to keep, then replace them with different books for the next year.

Food: Yes, food is going to be on here. The reason why it is, is due to the fact that people eat way more than they used to, it is all about bigger and fuller plates, than actually enjoying what is in front of you. And for the most part, people don’t even eat half of what is in front of them, then they just toss the rest into the garbage can. The food we put into our stomach is for us to enjoy and savor the aroma and delicious herbs and spices that are placed upon the food. It is also to keep us nourished and keep us healthy. Food isn’t meant to be wasted in the landfills, while there are millions of children in third world countries are looking for a meal on the streets. If you are single, and enjoy making big batches of food for the work week, there is nothing wrong with that, just make sure that you don’t waste it by chucking it out, and don’t gorge out on it either, use proportions.

Email: We live in the digital age where everyone has an email account that is linked to their social media accounts, and also linked to their work. However, sometimes, the inbox can become cluttered with unwanted messages and scams. Cleaning out your inbox at least three times a month will help your digital side of life, minimalist as well.

Quality over quantity: When it comes to clothes, toys, and electronics, most people think that more is always better, but you don’t need to have more in order to have those things. Invest wisely in those things, find things that you know that you can wear over and over again for a while, until they are torn down; or those electronic devices that can last a long time. Because being able to use an object for a long time is a great thing, because you can create different outfits or you can still surf the web and create amazing documents on that computer, or your child can still play with the toy without it breaking down on them after only a few months. *I had a backpack that I had kept for four years and it finally fell apart, so I invested in a new one. I do the same thing with shoes, clothes, and electronic devices.

Living a minimalistic life is not daunting, you are only making it appear that way because you are unsure of how to start, and you are afraid to let go of the things that you truly do not need. Simplifying life creates more room to breathe, more room to be creative, and give your space some breath of fresh air so to speak.