As the New Year approaches, the pressures for resolutions increase. This may come to you with ease or it may feel like fingers nails scratching against a chalkboard, screeching loudly for a an idea to put into action. Did you know that about 50% of the population sets a New Years resolution? Did you also know that research indicates that only 8% of those who set one, actually follow through?! Believe me, those statistics are shocking to me too!
When faced with this New Year, I like to first take a look at the past year and look at what I've learned. If everything I went through, made me the powerful woman I am today, then I have no regrets, and I have many lessons to refer to moving forward. This New Year, take a moment to embrace and reflect on the lessons learned with the understanding that all you go through is meant to happen for your growth to be where you are today.
If you feel called to take that next step and make a resolution, make a small one to start. Small goals create a likelihood of following through as the fear response stays off and your strengths are able to shine through. As we know, success feeds upon success so your accomplishment with that small goal will invite in a feeling of personal strength which will lead you to set another goal that you will be sure to be successful with. If you need some support, coaching, retreats, etc, you know where to find them for your New Year :-). Sending happy well wishes for an amazing 2015.
~Liz Myers, Rooted Living Wellness
One of my favorite mindfulness activities rests in the meld of photography and nature. Looking through the lens of the camera shrinks the world down to that rectangular view, allowing a simplified focus and appreciation of the beauty through the viewfinder. Wishing you many mindful moments of appreciation for all that you already are and all that you experience each and every day. Sending much love your way <3.
Want a healthier version of a super amazingly delicious dessert for the holidays? Try out this kickass raw chocolate recipe. It's super easy and quick to make! As always, this recipe can be adapted any way you like. Allergic to nuts? Ditch em. I love dried blueberries so sometimes I substitute these for the goji berries. Explore with your favorite dried fruit.
3/4 cup cacao butter
1 cup cacao powder
1 Tbsp Maple Syrup
1/2 cup goji berries
1/3 cup almonds
1/3 cup cashews
1/4 cup hazelnuts
1/3 cup Sunflower Seeds
1 Tbsp coconut oil
2 Tbsp almond butter (Optional)
1/3 cup coconut shavings
1 Tbsp maca powder (optional)
1 Tsp Cinnamin
1/2 Tsp salt
First, measure out the cacao powder and put it in medium size mixing bowl. Next, gently melt the cacao butter and almond butter together in a pan. Low heat is necessary to avoid burning this aromatic butter. Take mindful moments to smell this beautiful delicious cacao aroma! When the butter has just completed melting, pour into the bowl over the cacao powder. Add in the coconut oil, maple syrup, cinnamon, maca powder, cinnamon and salt to taste. Mix with love! This is your base chocolate.
Next, place in the dried fruit, seeds, nuts and coconut shavings. Be sure to SAVE a bit of the nut, seeds, fruit and coconut shavings to add over the top.
If you are using a mold, place a couple of pieces of dried fruit in the bottom of the mold then fill up almost to the top. You can place more coconut shaving, dried fruit and/or nuts on the top of the chocolate once you've filled the mold most of the way. If you do not have a mold, you can spread the chocolate over a plate and add the extra dried fruit, etc on the top. Place in the freezer for up to an hour. Remove from the molds or plate and enjoy! For long lasting raw chocolate, keep it in the fridge for freshness and to avoid melting :-).
Why Raw chocolate?
A few amazing benefits from Yates article in Rejuvenated for Life:
• Cacao is a powerhouse full of antioxidants!
• Cacao has been studied for its ability to reduce blood pressure and has been shown to produce “a small but statistically significant effect in lowering blood pressure by 2-3mm Hg in the short term” (Schardt, 2013)
• Eating cacao makes you happy! It contains phenylethylamine, which is responsible for our state of mood and pleasure and the same feelings you get when you are in love.
• Acts as a stimulant and can improve mental alertness.
• Cacao also contains serotonin and dopamine – which also stimulate good mood and ‘pleasure’ feelings :-).
Just a tip that this chocolate can be quite stimulating so watch out for those late night chocolate snacks :-). Thanks for stopping in for a healthier holiday treat! Please share your recipes, variations and feedback too.
~ by Liz Myers, Rooted Living Wellness
Yates, Claire. Rejuvenated for Life. Retrieved http://rejuvenatedforlife.com/your-ultimate-guide-to-raw-cacao-powder-butter-nibs/
Schardt, D, How Bittersweet It is, 2013, Nutrition Action Healthletter, Dec
Some of you may thoroughly enjoy this busy time of the year. However, many of you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed by the buzzing energy and tasks to tackle. Holidays can bring up some old memories or bring you closer to events that you would rather avoid. Finding balance during this busy and often emotional time of year takes some effort on your part. Here's a few tips to keep you in check and smiling through the madness!
1) Slow it Down: If you find yourself racing on the treadmill of "to do's", take a break. Check out your list and erase a couple of things you are doing just out of pure obligation.
2) Ask for Support: You don't have to do it all yourself. Ask a friend, partner or loved one to give you a helping hand.
3) Stick to a budget: I often see people break the bank during this time of year just to impress others or show they care. However, when January comes and you can't pay your credit card bill, those others concerns won't matter any longer. Consider home made gifts or attending bazaars. It's holds a much more heartfelt effect for sure and your wallet will thank you!
4) Exercise: Stick to exercise and other healthy activities to keep your stress level down.
5) Eat without Guilt: This is a time to eat amazing and often decadent food. Enjoy every bite. It's the guilt that makes it harder for your body to break it down and digest properly, so enjoy! However, make sure to take breaks from too much of those sugary treats to avoid getting sick.
6) Create New Holiday Traditions: How many traditions do you take part in that seem to cause more stress? Find some time to create fun and uplifting traditions for yourself and your loved ones.
7) Celebrate! Take some time to really enjoy opportunities to reconnect with loved ones.
~ By Liz Myers at Rooted Living Wellness
Liz Myers, MA, RYT200
Spiritual Life Coach, Yoga and Meditation Teacher.
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