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Personal Development Risk Management: 5 Simple Personal Development Tips

We’ve all heard the age-old saying, “until something changes, nothing changes”. One of my counselors, Ms. Anne, used to tell us repeatedly that “until the pain of changing becomes greater than the pain of remaining the same, nothing changes.” Usually it takes coming to grips with the stark reality of our present, most often in the form of some kind of crisis, for us to want to make positive changes regarding the people, places and things with which we interact most often. Instead of reacting to crises, we can be proactive and intentional in our approach, employing what I’d like to call Personal Development Risk Management, to alleviate and avoid unnecessary moments of crisis and promote emotionally healthy, stress-free living.

Here are 5 easy personal development risk management tips to help you de-stress your day-to-day life:

1: Shut down the drama in your life because it’s unhealthy. Arguing and fighting creates dis-ease.

This does not equate being a doormat. It means knowing your worth and knowing when to let the frivolous and counterproductive go. You are not required to attend every single argument to which you are invited. Stay away from gossip, negativity and people who are chronic complainers as these behaviors have a negative impact on your general health and your mental and emotional well-being.

Action: Train your mind to see the good in others, and to find opportunity where there appears to be obstacles. Don’t entertain unnecessary drama, whether it is self-generated, or brought to you by others.

2: Stay away from negative, selfish, energy-draining relationships that do not honor you, or even worse, use you, abuse you and take advantage of your kindness.

No one is asking you to be a martyr. Don’t buy into anyone’s negativity or guilt trips. If you know your own worth, it will be difficult for others to manipulate you into doing and being things you don’t want to do or be.

Action: Honor your “no”. Your “no” comes from a place that is just as sacred as your “yes”. Respect yourself enough to learn how to say “no” without feeling guilty for having done so.

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serenity and yoga; practicing at sunset, meditation

3: Don’t attempt to change others.

There’s enough work to do on yourself. Develop relationships where all parties can grow. Ask yourself, what is it about this person/situation that’s bothering me so much? Often, the answer is within ourselves, not the other person. That person is getting under your skin because you have violated your own sense of morality or self-respect about the situation.

Action:  Ask yourself: Am I acting out of ego or love? Always choose love.

4: Create an atmosphere of mutual respect, love and appreciation.

Be mindful of your relationships and how you treat others. Free yourself from inner chaos by meditation, relaxation, and stillness. Keep lines of communication open and honest.

Action: Ask yourself: How am I called to be of service today? Then, look for opportunities to be of loving service to others.

5: Create a sanctuary where you can live in peace, relax your mind, revive your spirit and renew your purpose.

What you create inside of yourself will manifest outside yourself. Create a physical space that supports your mission of living a stress-free, peaceful life. Your home should be a place of relaxation and peace, not clutter and chaos.

Action: As you strive for inner clarity by developing rituals and being mindful of your relationships, work on bringing organization and beauty to your home.

Photo credit: google images


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The Importance Of Rest

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One of the good things about having hypothyroidism and crashed adrenals as a result of autoimmune disorder is I have learned the importance of rest. Before now, rest meant nothing to me. Naps were for toddlers, the elderly and losers. I would push myself to the absolute limit and beyond, and quip that “I’ll rest when I’m dead!”. Busy-ness was my badge of honor. I prided myself on how little sleep I needed, how fast, strong, smart and capable I was. Regardless the circumstances, I would always manage to land on my feet.

This time, life had it in for me. I landed on my back, in bed, unable to get up. For two months with limited mobility, I lay there, crying, anxious, berating myself for my inability to be (what I considered ) “normal”. Why didn’t I feel well? Why as I so weak? Why was I so useless? The rent was paid and there was food in the cupboards, but I chose instead to focus on the sink filled with dishes and the piles of laundry on the floor. My children were both well cared for despite my illness, and in turn were very loving and forgiving toward me when I could not get up and cook their favorite meals, or go outside like they wanted me to, but I chose to be unforgiving toward myself. It took four agonizing months for me to realize all I needed to do to heal myself was to let it all go and rest.

sab·bath |ˈsabəTH/ 

Old English, from Latin sabbatum, via Greek from Hebrew šabbāṯ, from šāḇaṯ ‘to rest.’

The thing about this world is that we glorify busy-ness. Stress Worry Woman with Text on White

Everyone’s read the humble-brag facebook posts about how busy everyone is and how many hours of work they’ve put in and how little they’ve slept and how much coffee they’ve drank and just how successful they feel they are going to be.

We are told that rest is for the weak; sleep is for the lazy. We are taught to keep late nights and force early mornings, encouraged to endure long work days fueled by carbohydrates and caffeine, in the promise that success as defined by the masses will be waiting for us.

As a result, we often neglect our health, relationships, families, and live at such a pace that by the time we have amassed the wealth and lifestyles we have spent our entire lives chasing, we lack the vitality to enjoy it. Being ill this time around really was an eye opener for me. I could no longer live a life fueled by unhealthy stress. I would no longer drive the struggle bus. For all my hard work, I was no longer strong. I could feel myself losing muscle tone. Even though I slept 12 hours everyday, I would wake up exhausted and weak. Everything had to change.

The thing about illness and dis-ease is that it is most usually cured by rest.

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I hired a Life Coach, because I knew I could no longer afford to struggle alone. After consulting with my doctors and joining a few support groups, I changed my diet- no more caffeine, no more gluten. Most importantly, I changed the course of my life, the direction of my thoughts, desires and outcomes. In time, I learned to let go of the ideas of things like “fear”, “struggle” and “failure”, and began to trust that the universe was, at all times, collaborating with me to create the reality I believe I will have. Finally realizing that I have the permission of the universe to succeed, I decided to rest. I released my worries and fears and decided that I was going to believe that I was taken care of. Slowly, I began to see a change in my physical and mental health.

Today, I am a much more relaxed, happier version of myself. My confidence is growing and I am able to get out and exercise- not a whole lot, but enough to keep me moving and pain free. I pay attention to my nutrition, and listen to my body. I take naps, happily! I make sure to get enough sleep- 12 hours a night most nights, but never fewer than five hours. I respect my body and its limits, and understand that quality sleep is an important part of self-love and self-care.

I have let go of fear. Today, Love is my source. I try my best to be aware of when I am making decisions out of fear, and choose instead to make decisions out of gratitude and love. The sum total of these actions help me to remain in a calm, joyful, worry-free, drama-free state where “rest” is my main goal. I still have a ways to go to get back to baseline where my physical health is concerned, but for now, I am grateful for the lessons learned.

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Relevant Reading:

11 Surprising Health Benefits of Sleep

Why sleep is important and what happens when you don’t get enough

Why Is Sleep Important

Storm Management: Relax. Be Still.

“If you will be still during the storm, you will find the strength to ride out the storm.”

Be Still.

Relax.

Those are were my least favorite words. I wasn’t born to be still. I like to be in motion, constantly doing something. Even when I’m sitting still, I have to be doing something. It doesn’t matter what- doodling, humming, playing with my phone- so long as I’m moving. I’d prefer to walk a few blocks between subway stations than stand still and wait for the train. So when the storms of life are blowing all around me, the last thing I want to do is be still.

My best friend usually would drive me insane by telling me to “relax”. My question always was, “How could you relax? Can’t you see everything is falling to pieces? Why aren’t you doing something????” During times of distress I always felt that it was my obligation to do something even if that something was only worry. It was no surprise then that I became an adult with depression and anxiety issues. I’d trained myself to be an obsessive worrier, always anxious, always calculating, always concerned, hyper-vigilant, high strung, very intense. In some areas of my life that turned out to be a strength of mine- I am very analytical with keen clinical judgement, and prefer to err on the side of caution when it comes to dealing with my clients and their day-to-day affairs and mental health. On a personal note, however, I was constantly stressed out, and stressed out the people around me, pushed people away and was constantly living in a state of near crisis.

There’s a saying that goes something like, “Worry is like a rocking chair. There’s lots’ of motion but you’re going nowhere.” That was me. Lots of motion, but going nowhere. And then my friend would say, “Relax”, and I would pitch an even bigger fit. I couldn’t relax. I just wouldn’t.

During the storm, Pi reaches a moment of understanding in the middle of the second storm when the sees how his reaction to the storm is affecting Richard Parker. After having tried to remove the canvas covering to expose Richard to the awe and might of god, he realizes that Richard is terrified, and seeks cover with him beneath the canvas instead. There, they both lie in wait for the storm to pass, and though the wait is rough, as they are tossed back and forth like rag-dolls, they ultimately are kept safe within the confines of the lifeboat and live to fight another day. While looking at this, I wonder how much easier this transition may have been for them both if Pi had sought this action first, covering the boat and lashing it down securely, and lying still beneath the shelter of the canvas for the duration of the storm, instead of allowing the boat to take on water and scaring the tiger half to death before realizing that he’d already had what he needed to be safe and that all that was required of him in this moment was for him to be still

And so it is with us during times of chaos and trial in our lives. So many times we use up all our energy in the midst of a storm fighting, cussing, crying, blaming, using up all our resources looking for other resources, or trying to get other people to take responsibility for our storm for us thinking that these things will make the storm go away when in truth, all we need to see is that everything we need has already been given to us, and that we already have what it takes to withstand the storm, and to come out stronger than ever, if we would just be still. If we would just…

…relax.

“Relax”, I have come to learn, doesn’t mean “forget” or ‘let go”; it doesn’t mean “be lazy” or “neglect your responsibility”. It certainly doesn’t mean “I don’t care”. Relax in this context means “allow”. Allow the storm. Just allow it. See it, notice it, adjust your sails, lash your boat down, then be still and allow it in full faith that you will come out on the other side and you will be fine. Not only fine, but you will be better than you were before. The storms of life are meant to strengthen us, to show us things inside and around us that we hadn’t noticed before, to awaken the skills that are dormant within us so that we can persevere through the next thing. If we’re busy flailing and screaming and fighting the universe, we are not receiving the lessons we are being taught and the gifts we are being given.

If we are rejecting the universe, we will manifest lack.

If we are operating out of fear, we will generate struggle.

 BUT, if we allow it, if we operate out of faith knowing that the universe is collaborating with us for our highest good, even in the midst of the storm, we will find the strength to ride out the storm.This takes a certain amount of personal discipline to develop, but over time, if we will practice being still we will find that we are able to weather the storms of life with better and better outcomes. This is the secret to success. Successful people aren’t people who have never encountered personal storms, but those who found the inner strength to withstand multiple storms, and have come out on the other side stronger, faster, healthier, wiser, better than they were before.

 “And once the storm is over, you won’t remember

Do you believe the universe is working with you to bring your dreams to pass?

it’s not enough to have faith when the sun shines, only to abandon all hope when the storm clouds roll in! The way we demonstrate that we believe what we say we believe is by learning to be still. This means no worrying- no complaining, no going out of our way to find solutions by resorting to actions that violate our personal sense of integrity. Of course we remain diligent and work toward an end by doing what we said we would do- we get up and go to work every day, we care for our families and loved ones, we continue to take steps toward self-care. We listen to our intuition and remain faithful to the call we have accepted in our lives. And we allow the storm to pass- no push back, no struggle, no fear. Because we KNOW that the universe has our best interest at heart; we know that we will be taken care of. And it is this kind of faith, and this ability to rest that will take us through to the other side.

How do you practice being still?

I meditate every morning before I get out of bed to make sure that my thoughts for the day are aligned with an attitude of faith and strength. I am mindful of my thoughts during the day and when I find myself becoming anxious or using language that is not reflective of a relaxed, faithful attitude, I adjust my speech and remind myself that the universe is working in my favor. I stay away from people, places and things that are negative or that influence me to think negatively. I inspire myself to remain excited about my future despite the way things may seem in the present. I no longer allow myself to worry or be anxious about circumstances and situations over which I have no control.

If you struggle with depression or anxiety, talk with someone about ways to manage it. Try any of the things listed above and let me know if it works for you. If you do something different, I’d love to know about it- I’m always looking for new ways to try to keep myself on track. Let’s trade notes. 🙂

Relax and Be Still.

What’s your WHY?

Wine Out Of Water Summer One of the things I’ve had to think about lately is my why.

Why do I blog? 

I love to write. I’ve been writing for as long as I’ve known myself and I think my family members consider me a scribe by default. Early on in my career, I would supplement my work- whatever it was, whether I was a retail sales associate, or a financial recovery specialist, or employment support specialist, or more recently as a case manager- with writing. I always found journaling my thoughts about my day to day understanding of the world around me to be an exercise in catharsis. Though I may not be as disciplined about it as I would like, I still enjoy wrangling the thoughts that run wild in my head and putting them in order on a page, or online. I’ve been immersed in creative writing and poetry since I was six years old; I have a “bunion” (is it a “bunion” if it’s on your finger? A callous? Not sure what the terminology is here but my finger is permanently deformed…let me know in the comments if you know what it’s called!) on the middle finger of my left hand from grasping my pencil tightly during early attempts to turn out rough drafts. I also drew a bit and colored a lot, but writing was always my drug of choice.

During the several iterations of this blog, my why has changed significantly.

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When I first started, it was to heal a broken heart. I needed to scream. Screaming into cyberspace was all I could do so I wouldn’t turn my pain and anger at the thought of losing what I thought was love inward on myself. So I wrote and wrote until I felt like I could move forward.

I archived some of my old writing here, too, which is why some of my older work waxes religious; at the time I worked at a faith-based organization where I blogged for the organization’s website, a weekly spot we called e-Motivational Weekend Words. I blogged for posterity.

Now, I blog for my health.

On my worst days, I find it difficult to recall easy words. Sometimes I know I understand a concept but have a very hard time articulating what I am thinking, much to my embarrassment. My children often help me to remember things that I know I know- names of people and things, being able to accurately describe what I am doing or would like them to do. They are usually good at poking humor at my inability to recall, or the way the words fall out all jumbled and nonsensical, my frustration at myself always apparent. I blog now to keep my mind functioning. I record things for posterity, but not out of a sense of admiration. There is always a looming sense that these are things I will want to remember, things I will want to recall but will not be able to, someday in a not-so-far-off future. I blog for my health. On my foggiest days I continue to write even when it doesn’t seem to make sense. On clearer days, I look back and realize it wasn’t half as bad as I thought it was. I’m not looking for perfection, or for some crazy idea that will shift all of mankind into a new paradigm of existence. I simply wish to record the thoughts that make sense to me. In the event that I can no longer find myself on command, I hope that I would have left a trail for someone else- my children, their children, a curious lover or student- to find.

For those of you who enjoy reading these thoughts, or who share similar experiences, feel free to leave comments, or to reblog- I’d love to hear from you! What’s your why?

A Letter From the Editor

Respiratory infection (third one in the last two months) plus an eye infection means I’ve been forced to slow down. BUT I shall still hope to get Wine Out Of Water up and moving as promised!

WINE OUT OF WATER

Summer Edition 2015

Happy Summer!

By now I hope everyone has gotten into the groove of Summer 2015- barbeques and days off and lounging in the sun at the park, by the beach, or at home with or loved ones. Isn’t it funny how quickly we forget how cold and miserable we were just a few weeks ago waiting for the sun to make an appearance? Personally, I am a lover of sunlight, even and as much as I love the moon. Without it, my life takes on a dreary kind of feeling, the kind of feeling out of which it is difficult to pull one’s self and spirit. These days, I’ve been doing much better physically, so I’ve decided to put some of that good energy into Wine Out Of Water’s Summer 2015 Edition. Thanks so much to everyone who has joined us on facebook in the past seven…

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Your summer reading list: 70+ book picks from TED speakers and attendees

I just acquired “Thinking Fast And Slow” and “Labyrinths”.

“The Art Of War” is one of my favorite books; it was part of my reading list last summer and I’ve read it three times since then.

What are you reading? Do you have a list? Currently, I’m reading “The Motivation Manifesto” by Brendon Burchard. Share your list with me!

TED Blog

Summer reading recommendations from TED

The tables in bookstores can be overwhelming: Every book cover looks appealing, every blurb glows with praise. Sometimes, you just need a recommendation from a human, someone you trust. Below, 10 members of the TED community — with very different points of view — share the books they think you’ll enjoy this summer. Their selections are wonderfully untethered to new releases and bestsellers, with a little something for everyone.


David Eagleman and TED
Mind-bending fiction, picked by David Eagleman

David Eagleman is a neuroscientist whose sensory vest may just expand the limits of human perception. But this TED speaker is also a writer  — of both fiction (his Sum: Forty Tales from the Afterlives has been translated into 28 languages) and nonfiction (Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain was a bestseller). His recommendations highlight mind-bending fiction:

Labyrinths by Jorge Luis Borges. “An inspiration that never runs out of batteries for me…

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You can do it. Start doing it now.

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Whatever is calling, drawing, leading you forward right now into the New is doing so for your absolute Highest Good, and that of everyone else in your life.

You absolutely have the capability and strength to make these changes and to go where Life is taking you next. You really can do it, despite the intense, gut-wrenching fears and anxiety about what your life will look like if you follow your intuitive heart.

You must do it.

There is no turning back, and simply no staying still, because your energy field has already make the change. The decisions have been made in consciousness, and the steps actually already have been taken in higher vibrational reality.

Now, your body just needs to follow. You simply need to keep putting one step in front of the other and walking on towards the Light that is heralding such immense and joyful transformations for you.

You can do it.

It may feel like it is, or will, take every ounce of courage that you have ever mustered, but the energy inside you just has to flow freely: without restraint, without self-doubt, without the toxic pressure of other people’s reactions, without endless worry about the consequences of following your Truth.

When you follow your truth, sometimes it causes temporary chaos. It stirs up the dust and brings emotions to the fore that have long needed airing. Other people get to see that you are a person with needs, with passions, with ambitions, with dreams and with a life path that may not be just about looking after them.

What you feel is calling you now is not a selfish path. It is, in fact, a path that is ultimately more giving and more aligned with spiritual service than the one you were previously on. This is because when you are living from your true spirit you give back to the world expansively, without limits, from the pure wisdom of your heart, with a deep and clear quality of presence that only comes from a person who is humble enough to realize that they are divinely magnificent.

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You are divinely magnificent.

The world needs your magnificence to be sweetly flowing from your body. The world needs you to be glowing with love uninhibited. The world needs you to be nourished and supported, so that you can give from a place of balance – not burned out, resentful, jealous, frantic, unfulfilled, depleted or self-sacrificing.

You can make these changes that call you to put yourself in the center stage of your life and live from your authentic Spirit. You can do it in front of everyone that knows you. You can continue to do it even if they don’t like it and complain. You can keep doing it even if they have complete meltdowns and tantrums in the face of you shifting the patterns that have stood firm for so long.

People who have been used to receiving the endless giving from Earth Angels and Lightworkers don’t generally like it when you begin getting assertive with your own needs for freedom and individuality. It disrupts the nice, safe place that they have been living in for so long. It forces them to start taking responsibility for their own lives and personal issues. It makes them stand on their own two feet, and realize that you are not going to take their burdens any longer.

This frees you up to have much healthier relationship dynamics – and it also makes it rapidly clear who is now meant to be in your life and who isn’t. You are not abandoning people by getting stronger in your personal boundaries, or by taking new paths that resonate with your real energy. You are actually giving them a great gift – the opportunity to create their own lives, realise how powerful they really are inside, and to experience a new, more balanced and positive life of their own.

You really, really can do it, beloved Earth Angel. You can be strong, stronger and even stronger still.

You can accept the love and support of legions of etheric angels and other powerful guides who surround you at all times. You can receive the help of earthly angels who are all around you also.

You can trust the pulsing of your own precious, sensitive heart when it says that now is the right time to leave the old ways and move on to the wondrous and miracle-filled New.

You can do it, you are doing it, and you will continue to do it with nothing but encouragement and acceptance from the Universe. You deserve this life that is beckoning to you. You are entirely worthy of every drop of happiness that now comes your way.

Start doing it now.

(Originally written by Sophie Bashford and posted on Keeper Of The Platinum Ray)

Photo credits: Asa-Mari Thompson & google images

A Letter From the Editor

Summer Edition 2015

Happy Summer!

By now I hope everyone has gotten into the groove of Summer 2015- barbeques and days off and lounging in the sun at the park, by the beach, or at home with or loved ones. Isn’t it funny how quickly we forget how cold and miserable we were just a few weeks ago waiting for the sun to make an appearance? Personally, I am a lover of sunlight, even and as much as I love the moon. Without it, my life takes on a dreary kind of feeling, the kind of feeling out of which it is difficult to pull one’s self and spirit. These days, I’ve been doing much better physically, so I’ve decided to put some of that good energy into Wine Out Of Water’s Summer 2015 Edition. Thanks so much to everyone who has joined us on facebook in the past seven months- we’re just past 700 followers in the past week! Wine Out Of Water is also on twitter, so find us there for fun and inspirational quotes @deltacat79.

As I shared a few months back, I’ve been dealing with a host of health issues brought on by an autoimmune disorder I’ve had all my life. I remember being labelled as “sickly” as a child, my grandmother lovingly referring to me as her “half-a-child” on account of my being ill more often than not. Though the doctors were unsure what was causing the trouble, one thing was certain- I was never going to let being sick stop me from doing anything I wanted to do! By the time I had turned twelve, the symptoms of my disease had subsided- the chronic plaque psoriasis in the palms of my hands, the mysterious fevers, the acid reflux and vomiting, the irritable bowels, the asthma- it all seemed to have gone away, and I felt considerably stronger. In my mind I had beaten whatever it was. I thought my body was completely healed and so I threw myself into life with reckless abandon, knowing that I could handle whatever life threw my way. Most anyone who knows me knows me for being a very active, joyful person, never one to shy away from an adventure. I love to test my physical and emotional limits in exchange for learning about myself and the world around me, even as an “adult” (I put that word in quotation marks because there are days when I don’t really feel like an adult, but I have to subscribe to the idea of being one because…life…). And so I lived most of my life after turning twenty four not very aware of my personal limits. These past ten years have been eye opening for me in terms of wrestling with and acknowledging my own limitations and figuring out how best to make them work for me. These past few months in particular have been game changing- chronic illness has returned, bringing with it a host of required change, some of which is difficult to understand and to deal with, but I am as committed now as I was as a child not to let it beat me.

For a while I’ve had to put my writing on hold to focus on bringing structure to my life in a way that my days will make sense and so I can function optimally and feel like myself again. Now that I feel like I understand what has been happening and I can see the positive differences these changes have brought me, I feel confident and excited to share my journey with you. Hopefully, some of the things I  have discovered about myself along this journey will help someone else who is experiencing the same things. The whole idea behind Wine Out Of Water is to inspire those of us who are committed to making the best out of the ordinary, everyday situations which we have been given. Far too often this world will tell us that we are too small, too inadequate, too frail, too weak, too anything to inspire change, but I know first hand that this isn’t true. No one is too small. No one is too weak. No one is incapable. We are all way more powerful than we believe. And it isn’t necessary to mount elaborate campaigns to inspire greatness. All we are required to be is the truest version of ourselves. We are all each others’ inspirations, whether we are aware of this truth or not. We are all talented, unique, gifted. My wish is that we all find that thing that makes us special and that we share it with the world. Now more than ever that we live in a time where connectivity is easier than it has ever been, we owe ourselves and those around us the pleasure of expressing, honing and cultivating those gifts.

One of the lessons I had presented to me in the form of autoimmune disease is knowing when to take a rest. If you’re like me, you’re constantly busy. There are never enough hours in the day, and you live at the speed of a freight train- constantly dashing from one activity to the next with barely a moment between to take a breath. The bad thing about AI is there’s never enough energy to do it all, a lesson that has come to me in a hard, unrelenting way. I’ve had to learn to ration my energy and be wise about day to day decisions previously to which I spared no thought. My friend, Harmony, who lives in South Africa, recently wrote a piece about Preparing For The Winter which inspired me to think about the way I usually live. Having grown up in the Caribbean, the thought of “Eternal Summer” has always been attractive to me- to have the sun constantly there to warm my blood and bones and make it okay for me to spend my days and nights on the beach…But the reality is, winter always comes in various shades, and the wise are always better prepared. Harmony got me thinking of what it means to be prepared for life’s winters, not just physically but emotionally as well, and things we can do in the summer to ensure our winter survival.

A huge part of this is looking at self-care, physical health and nutrition as building blocks for happy, healthy life. After exploring all the different foods I love but cannot eat anymore, I’ve had to make it a priority to look at food differently. Prior to getting sick this time, I would eat anything I wanted, anytime. Sure I had chest pains, irritable bowels, acid reflux, migraines…but I never thought about how what I ate affected how my body felt. I thought I would be just fine. How wrong I was! Now, my approach to food is much different. I eat specifically for what my body needs, and I’m much happier about my choices. Food is no longer my enemy- it is my friend. Very rarely will you hear me say “I’m on a diet”. I don’t do dieting anymore since my food choices are now reflective of my lifestyle. I will share with you the different things I have learned since going gluten free and striving to make my kitchen the first line of defense against illness; homemade tips and cheats I use around my home to keep me healthy and energized, and how learning the art of meal prep has changed the dynamics of my entire day. I will also share a bit more about chronic illness, and hope some of you will share with me too about how you find inspiration and strength on your individual journeys to living optimally despite daily limitations.

Dear Future Husband by Harmony will be back up with new articles on Tuesdays, exploring one woman’s thoughts about love, relationships, marriage, and every little nuance in between.

Lessons From The Lighthouse will return to close out the series with new articles on Wednesday. There may or may not be a giveaway of the book, Life Of Pi by Yann Martel…so stay tuned to learn more!

Love & Anarchy will be updated on Fridays with thought provoking questions and answers

Thoughts Of A Goddess will make a return on Sundays, bringing you nuggets of universal wisdom to inspire the direction of your week.

New To Wine Out Of Water

As part of my new efforts to be more disciplined and organized and grateful (all New Moon intentions!), I’ve added more structure to the blog, and am totally excited to be introducing three new items to our online magazine!

Unsolicited Opinions is an open forum discussion of EVERYTHING. As a philosophy major, I refuse to believe that philosophy as an art is dead. Now that we have all types of online communication platforms and myriad ways to communicate, we’re more exposed now than ever to each others’ backgrounds, idiosyncrasies, and cultures. Some things are worth exploring for absolutely no reason at all! Over the course of my life I’ve been accused of giving unsolicited advice and opinions. Listen- I’m curious and I’m nosy, and if I have an opinion, I’ll give it to you- simple as that! I believe my opinion- and yours- matters!

What if you found out you only had ten years to live? What would you do differently? These are questions I ask myself quite often. Things I Wish My Mother Told Me is born out of those two questions. Here, I chronicle things I wish my mother had told me in the ten years prior to her death in 1999 that I believe would have made all the difference to me in my adult life. These are things I hope my daughter and son will find useful in the days after my death, well into their adulthood, and will pass on to their children, and that shape my thoughts into the next ten years as a mother, wife and daughter.

And finally, but certainly by no means the least of all, I am most thrilled to introduce you to The Path Less Traveled, a YouTube series hosted by my dear friend Neffy Anderson. Neffy is a budding television personality who certainly has her eyes set on the prize. Inspired by her own journey to carve out a niche for herself in the journalism and broadcasting world, Neffy started her own YouTube series, chronicling the remarkable work of millennials who have all chosen to pursue their life’s passions and turn their personal gifts and talents into lucrative businesses. Every week, Neffy puts her stellar networking and interviewing skills to work to capture the lives of these diligent and talented individuals- and she does it in style! Links to previous as well as new and upcoming episodes will be posted every Sunday, so let’s catch up and stay tuned!

What a way to find the extraordinary in the Sacred Ordinary!

I’m really excited and grateful to everyone who has contributed to this summer season being the best we’ve had since the launching of this magazine two years ago. When I started off I was so scared that no one would care to read anything I wrote, but I kept writing. Today marks our third Summer season and I am beyond thrilled to have such exciting and engaging content to share with you, the readers, the thinkers and the doers. I look forward to hearing your feedback, as always. Wine Out Of Water would be nothing without you guys!

Much love and light as always,

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Asa-Mari