Body is not made of Marble

 

wolf

“The idea in our culture of body solely as sculpture is Wrong. Body is not marble. That is not its purpose. It’s purpose is to protect, contain, support, and fire the spirit and soul within it, to be a repository for memory, to fill us with feeling – that is the supreme psychic nourishment. It is to lift us and propel us, to fill us with the feeling to prove that we exist, that we are here, to give us grounding, heft, weight. It is wrong to think of it as a place we leave in order to soar to the spirit. The body is the launcher of those experiences. Without body there would be no sensations of crossing thresholds, there would be no sense of lifting, no sense of height, weightlessness. All that comes from the body. The body is the rocket launcher. In its nose capsule, the soul looks out the window into the mysterious starry night and is dazzled.”

– Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes  Women Who Run with the Wolves

http://candesscampbell.com

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It’s what is underneath that counts. . .

If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, live in the breath.

Amit Ray, Om Chanting and Meditation

 

Into the third month of my health plan, I’m getting to a place of complacency. What is showing up is the problem underneath . . . which for me has been stress.

My stress as I have shared, comes from doing too much. I won’t go into all that I do. Many of us do too much!

IMG_1314What I will say though is I notice when I over-function, I experience stress. Because I love what I do, I often don’t take the necessary time to rest Stress is stress! Whether you are having fun or in chaos, it is still stress.

I am happy that I have lost some weight, feel better in my clothes, get compliments, but mostly, I am happy that I feel like I am in control of my life.

My focus for the next few days is to be conscious of what I am doing. Is it necessary? Fun? Relaxing?

This morning I awoke and lie in bed next to Domingo and read Scandalous Housewives: Mumbai on my Kindle. Now, that was relaxing. I enjoyed the comfort of my bed, seeing the tops of the trees and the sky out the window and having a fresh cup of coffee as I lost myself in the lives of these Indian women.

For me what has been under my weight gain has been stress.

Other reasons we may gain weight:

  1. Stuffing feelings

  2. Living in the past

  3. Lack of planning around food

  4. Underlying health issues

  5. Chronic anger

  6. Lack of education

 There are so many more.

Hope you are using your journal to connect more deeply with yourSelf in your own process toward better health.

 Some sentence stems to play with . . .

 If you have not used the Sentence Stems yet, you can find how to do this here!

  1. I become stressed when . . .

  2. I unwind best by . . .

  3. If I nurtured myself I would . . .

Iwannabeaskinnybitch!

CandessCampbell.com

 


What do I Weigh?

“You wanna fly, you got to give up the shit that weighs you down.”
― Toni MorrisonSong of Solomon

Everyone I talk to and everything I read says “do not weight yourself everyday.” Well, you know what? I weigh myself every day. If I didn’t I think I’d weigh a ton. My eating doesn’t always correspond with my weight gain and it helps me to have a regulator. Weight can fluctuate from day to day depending on several factors such as alcohol intake, salt intake, water retention, hormones, the moon time for women and on and on. 

I have kept a record of my weight in a notebook, off and on since September 2006. It motivates me to shift my eating and increase exercise. I understand that weight fluctuates. Weighing myself is a symbol, a way to chart, and a measurable goal. I don’t want to take my measurements daily. The scale is great feedback.

  As I look back over my daily weight chart, I see that my lowest recorded weight was on November 19, 2008. I wonder what was happening then. I’ll have to go back through my journal. That was the year I traveled to Japan and also Ireland to facilitate workshops. It was a fun year.

When I told Luke, my trainer that I weigh myself daily, he shared it would be a good idea to compare my weight from one day of the week to the next. I thought this was brilliant. So this Wednesday morning I weighed myself and compared to last Wednesday. I am down three pounds! Now, Domingo is ready to walk me and then I’m off to the gym to see Luke!

Weigh or not, you can find the measureable feedback you need to keep yourself on track.

 Iwannabeaskinnybitch!

 In another blog I’ll talk about loving self-talk. This is critical to a healthy shift in your weight. 


Finding an Athletic Trainer

Day Two

Searched Trainers today on the website of the gym I belong to. Saw one that looked like he would fit. His bio read Spine/back strengthening, weight loss, muscle gain, progressing and regressing exercises as needed. Each client’s program is individually goal specific. It also read Interests: Basketball and spending time with family and friends. Of course, I checked out his profile on FB and continued to get a good sense of him.

I called and made an appointment.

Oh, did I tell you that I am doing some online dating now? I look at my dating profile and the one thing about myself that I don’t like is – I had to mark “a few extra pounds.” I screen out men who are hunters and smokers. I am sure some men screen out women who carry extra weight.

I’m not going to get into the issue of how society sees women, judgment of men who won’t date fat women, etc. The issue really is I don’t see myself as a woman with extra pounds. My internal self is fit and healthy and loves to work out. Just need to get my outer self to match!

Iwannabeaskinnybitch!

 


OMG Dating!

 

 

“Well?” Ron said finally, looking up at Harry. “How was it?”
Harry considered it for a moment. “Wet,” he said truthfully.
Ron made a noise that might have indicated jubilation or disgust, it was hard to tell.
“Because she was crying,” Harry continued heavily.
“Oh,” said Ron, his smile faded slightly. “Are you that bad at kissing?”
“Dunno,” said Harry, who hadn’t considered this, and immediately felt rather worried. “Maybe I am.” 
― J.K. RowlingHarry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

 

Disagree if you want, but this is NOT the way to date online!

I receive emails each week from men on Facebook. Now, that is okay with me since after four years of being single, I decided to date this year – remember, my word for 2014 is Relationships!

I’m not sure what would constitute an expert on relationships, but being a counselor for over 30 years gives me some credentials. Mostly though, I think what I am sharing is from past dating on dating sites and seeing what works and what doesn’t.  This is gender focused, and I am fine with feedback. Leave your comments!

Men – the Don’ts

1. Don’t contact a woman on FB (or other social media) and leave three long paragraphs of how beautiful they look and what you would want to do with and to her, like hold her, take her dancing, etc.

2. Not the best idea to write a diatribe of what you do and who you are in the first or second email.

3. Sharing paragraphs of what you believe and what she should believe early on will turn her off!!

Men – the Do’s

1. When you contact a woman on Facebook, you may want to say “hi” and start with a comment about something she posted. This is an invitation to begin a dialogue and she sees that you have read her page (not just looked at her photo) She knows you are interested in her.

2. Share some things about yourself.  Women are generally good at asking questions; so don’t overwhelm her with unsolicited sharing. Be aware of sharing too much too fast. Let the conversation unfold.

3. If you want to begin a conversation and a possible relationship, Facebook is not match.com. It can be too much for you both to disclose in the format of listing exactly what you want in a partner. You will rarely find all of it anyway, and not meeting all the criteria can stop the dialogue.

Women – Don’ts

1. This may seem odd to say, but believe me, I have seen this happen a lot! Don’t fall in love on the Internet! What people post whether it be photos or what they say may not be true. Have you ever watched the TV show Catfish!

2. Take some time to let the conversation unfold and see how the communication goes. You may not answer for a day or two (busy) and he may be fine with that or be reactive. Let his true personality come through.

3. Don’t give away too much information. Don’t give away money (I’ve seen it) or buy a plane ticket to see him or for him to see you. Be aware. Don’t be needy.

Screen Shot 2014-01-22 at 5.05.39 PM

Women – Do’s

1. After a few emails, if you feel like you may want to get to know the person, ask him to Skype with you. This is better than the phone. You can hear his voice and see what he is doing. One of my clients did this and the man who she Skyped with was playing a game on his phone the whole time. NEXT. . .  (A man who wrote paragraphs about my beauty last week contacted me. After checking out his FB page, I said “let’s Skype” and he disappeared!)

2. Trust your gut. Be aware and catch the first “hit” from your gut. Often in my counseling practice when a client is ending a relationship, I ask “when did you know this wasn’t right for you?” More often than not, they reply, the first day, week, etc.

3. We attract a partner who is at our same vibration. This can mean mental or emotional health. If you don’t feel like you have the self-esteem, confidence, or emotional health, work on yourself first. Whether you see a counselor, coach, healer, read a book, go to some kind of meetings, it doesn’t matter. Focus on, and heal yourself first. Then attract the man you deserve!

Well, I am hearing the word “harsh” in my head, but sometimes as a counselor, I think I have seen too much!  Let’s finish with wishing you happy dating, and love ever after!

What do you think?


Interview with Swami Samayananda Part 1

This interview took place at Yashodhara Ashram in British Columbia, Canada. This Ashram is on the beautiful Kootenay Lake.

 (Some sections have been edited for grammar.)

Candess: What motivated you to become involved with the Ashram?

Swami Samayananda: In the late ‘70s I was in a PhD program in Transpersonal Psychology in California at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology and it was one of the first of its kind anywhere in North America.

And it was in the first half of the year I was there I met Swami Radha. She came as a teacher in the course and she was teaching one of the workshops she had created called Life Seals.  She had been very supportive of the whole transpersonal movement because she thought it was a way that women could come into the work, which was very dominated by men, the whole psychological field [was dominated by men]. And also she thought it was the women who would bring a more feminine approach into psychology and also open it up more to the spiritual. She really supported the whole transpersonal institute that was started there.

She agreed. She offered to come to teach and she did many of the first years that the school was there. That’s how I initially. .  . a door opened, I met her and then I left California, my life went on in other directions and then I moved back to California.

Six months after I moved back she opened her first center of her teachings, her first one in the states, 20 minutes from where I was living. And so, I spent a lot of time with her in workshops she offered and with her during the mid 80’s. To have a teacher who was so, well, first of all she was female and that was wonderful, for me, but also to have a teacher who lived what she said. There was no discrepancy between who she was and how she lived her life and how she taught and what she offered. I always had a sense there was so much more behind her, as a person. I was always curious what that was. What was it that she knew?  Why did she think the way she thought? It was always a drawing power for me.

So, It wasn’t until 1987 I came to the Ashram itself. I was living in California and I was with her. Then it was in ‘87 I came for the first time for our 3-month yoga development course. That was the first time I had taken it.  So even then I was going back. I came and took the course and I went back to my job and back to my life in California. And over time in my life there has been a lot of back and forth, living at the centers that are connected with the Ashram and teaching there, directing there, but always coming back and returning here. A couple of years ago I said I just want to be here, so that is what I did.

Candess: That is great. It is beautiful here. Where is it that she first started? What was her first center?

Swami Samayananda:  She immigrated to Canada in ’54 or a couple of years earlier, not exactly sure, but it was around that time from Germany. She had a visionary experience, which took her to India and to her training time with Sivananda, Swami Sivananda Rishikesh. And then he sent her back to the west. So she came back in ’56. A very different . . . she was 44 years old and she was a professional dancer and she was an immigrant and so she was doing any kind of work she could find to pay her rent. She left everything again which she had also done in Germany, and went to India.

She just wanted to stay there. He [Swami Sivananda] sent her back. He said no, there is a lot that you can offer to Westerners. In ’56 she came back. She only had 6 months with him and she said literally she’d only in that six months had 12 hours with him. Just with him. She came back. Her first center of work was in Montreal. Eventually she moved out west. The temperature and everything was much more conducive for her and she started the first Ashram in North America in Burnaby, right outside of Vancouver and eventually moved to this location here in the interior of BC. Yashodhara Ashram

Candess:  The more I hear about her the more grateful I am that we have a Radha House Yoga Center in Spokane. So, being a Swami, What does it mean to be a Swami?

Swami Samayananda: There is sannyasan tradition. Sannyasan means becoming a Swami, living the life of a renunciant basically, in many countries of Asia. In the West it’s a whole lot less of a familiar choice in living a life. So what it really means is dedicating. I’ll talk personally. It means dedicating my life to the teachings that we offer here at the Ashram, which are Swami Radha’s teachings. So being of service to the people who come here, whether its teaching, whether its making special arrangements for people, listening to people, whatever it is, it really is making a commitment to a life of service, and doing the work that needs to be done. So the runinciation part is renouncing those things that I might personally want to do. What comes first is being of service and my commitment to the Divine, or to the Light or to whatever name we give that part of us that transcends the normal everyday life that we live. So it is really based a lot on surrender and learning what surrender means, which is very different than saying yes to anything that comes along and everything that comes along. It certainly is discrimination but it also is really learning what surrender is all about. What does it mean to let go of things that I am really attached to? Whether it is my ideas, whether it is physical things, or whatever. Freedom. There is a tremendous freedom that comes from a life of renunciation. I really recommend it.

Candess: I am doing the 10-day yoga course here now and I am just delighted. I can see how you and the other teachers have been so patient with us. (Swami Samayanda laughs) What is it like for you living in a spiritual community? How has your life changed?

Swami Samayanda:  Well it’s interesting because in a community like what we have here, it is a constant learning. The people that come together at any point and time wouldn’t necessarily be people I might go out and choose and say, oh, could I live with you or could we live together. That is part of the surrender, trying to understand, why has this particular group of people come together at this time and how do we support each other. That means not just the nice, friendly, supportive times, but it means how do I remain honest with myself and with the people that I live with. There is a small group of us that are living here permanently. We have our own class every week and it is a reflection class and we talk about what we are going through and what we are thinking and we talk about things that come up among us. It stays very open and flexible and honest among ourselves, because if that doesn’t happen with the core, it’s not going to happen in the whole community.

One of the things I find very vibrant about this community is we have people here at times ranging in ages. Recently we had a 3 year old up to someone who is 87. It is very intergenerational in that way. So we all have an opportunity. In society things are so segmented. Here we all have an opportunity to learn to live together, to work together, and to eat our meals together. It really is an integrative way of learning. So for me it is very exciting.

Swami Radananda who is our spiritual director, who is Swami Radha’s successor, is very much like Swami Radha in that she truly knows that life is a flow, that life is change. We have all kinds of scientific facts now telling us that life is not what it appears to be. There are waves, there are changes, there are vibrations, and there is all of this happening all the time. So, we are more and more putting ourselves in that flow asking, what do we need to be looking at? What do we need to be asking? What are the next steps in the future? We are in a big process right now, looking ahead to the next 10 or 15 years, and the fact that many of us in the core group are in our 60s and one is 70, and one is 82. Here we are now. We can’t keep doing what we have been doing forever. The next generation, how do we bring them in which is in the process of happening?  What are we going to do as we get older. I find it very, very exciting and it also takes some getting used to. In the outside world, at least in my life was trying to find the stability where things didn’t change so much. Here we are constantly moving and changing.

(to be continued. . .)