Are you hungry for God?

Ever had one of those intense moments where you’re just hungry and feel like eating everything in sight? And you don’t know what you’re really hungry for. Nothing in particular sounds good, and yet everything sounds good at the same time. You start eating anything you can find, but nothing really satisfies you.

When you feel a need to EAT or Binge, what are you really hungry for? Is it possible that it’s for a Bigger Connection? Connection to who you really are? Your Divine Self? The Self that knows she is really much more than this body on this planet at this time?

Maybe that speaks to you; maybe not. But either way, I think we are often hungry for Connection, not food. And I believe that is for our ultimate connection- God or Universe.

So, how can you connect instead of eating?

First, stop, take a breath and connect to your own breathing and body. This reminds me my former blog post, The Power of the Pause if you’d like more on the power of stopping or slowing down before making a choice. The idea is to be in the Present Moment. Just allow yourself to be in this moment and breathe.

Second, what do you do to connect to your own Divinity? Prayer, meditation or simply setting an intention to Connect? I find a memory of feeling connected is a great way to reconnect. Just close your eyes and allow a memory of being really connected to surface and just breathe in that feeling. Bask in it. Lean into it.

Another way to jump into Connection is Gratitude. Just stopping and thinking about what you are grateful for in this moment. Be specific. Instead of “my family”, how about my partner’s smile? or my child’s laughter last night when we were playing a game together? The more specific and recent the better. You may find it helpful to keep a list of things you are grateful for like a gratitude journal to help with this.

If you are having trouble connecting with Gratitude, this is the perfect time to Tap on whatever is blocking your way. It might look like:
Even though I’m not feeling grateful right now…
As a matter of fact I feel……and Tap on whatever comes up for you until you are able to let it go.

I recently had a client say: “Gratitude fills me up. I have fullness in my body. I don’t need the food when I am filled with gratitude and connection. What I’m really Hungry for is God.”

What about you? Are you hungry for God?

 

Death Changes Everything

My older sister, Kathy, passed away unexpectedly on June 13th.

 

This event has me taking a step back and evaluating many things in my life.
– What really matters to me.
– Where do I want to go from here?
– What are the lessons in this for me.

 

And through all of this inner reflection, I’m reminded of this quote: “Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss in life is what dies inside us while we live.” ~ Norman Cousins

 

I would be honored if you joined me on this self-discovery journey by reflecting on a few quick questions.

 

First, are you living the life of your dreams? No one’s life is perfect but do you feel you are making the choices that truly support you in living the way you choose or are you just going through the motions?

 

What really matters to you? Is it your family? Your career? How you are serving in the world?

 

I bet you didn’t say your weight and that is truly what my work is about.

 

I’m all about focusing on growing the life of your dreams and living a full life. 

 

I’m actually committed to helping you get your focus off of your weight and body and onto loving and accepting yourself as you are. Right now. With nothing changed or fixed. Just being in the Present.

 

I talk about weight loss because many of you believe that is what you need to be happy but honestly, it isn’t.

 

It’s what gets you here and some of you do lose weight while you work with me and some of you don’t. My real goal is to help you lose the emotional weight – the stuff that is holding you back from being free today, and consequently keeping the physical weight on your body. I do this by helping you to live in the Present and not in the Past. The resentments, the fears, the limiting beliefs – they can all be healed and released, and boy, is it liberating to release all of that weight.

 

Sooo much more is possible for your life than you may have ever imagined. And imagination is where it starts.

 

So, I urge you to ask yourself today: Are you living the life of your dreams? If not, what small change can you make today to get you closer to what you desire?

I can jump over my house!

I can jump over my house!

OK, not really, but my daughter made this remark to make fun of some of the health claims we hear these days and it was pretty funny so just had to share.

The reality of many health claims is some things work, some things don’t. Nothing works for everyone all the time. But I gotta tell you, I’ve been listening to the Hay House World Summit and have been reminded of a few claims that I believe are really true.

Joy is a choice and you can choose it now. In Alan Cohen’s interview, I was impressed with lots that he shared but that simple idea really stuck with me. Outside circumstances really don’t determine how we feel; it’s our perceptions and how we choose to look at our circumstances that really matters. Haven’t you know people experiencing serious illness who almost seem to thrive in spite of the situation?

In Sara Vance’s interview on The Real Secret to Losing Weight, she asked: “What emotions are you eating?” Great question! Next time you reach for something to eat when you’re not physically hungry, asking yourself this question could be very helpful.

I heard about the importance of Community. We thrive in community and that is one of the main reasons that I teach classes like Matrix Weight Loss Mastery. Those of us with eating and weight issues need to come together to love and support each other. Not to sit around and lament “Ain’t it awful?” but to build each other up. To know that we don’t have to stay stuck in misery. There is hope and change is possible. It won’t be perfect and life will still be messy but that’s what we’ve got each other for. And I can’t even begin to tell you all the glorious changes I am blessed to witness in my clients on a regular basis.

Lastly, just remember that life is about how you live it each day. Enjoying each moment. Life is the JOURNEY, not the destination. (Hence the name of my business). What you choose to feed yourself each day matters. Do you feed your soul with meditation, prayer, yoga, connection, and nourishing food OR the 3 big lies according to Renee Stephens- hopelessness, helplessness and I’m not good enough?

The choice is always up to you in every moment. Choose Joy! Choose Self Love. Choose Life to the fullest.

I’m lonely

A couple of months ago, I decided to teach a weight loss program this May. When I made this decision, I was doing great with food, losing weight using my own techniques and feeling on top of the world.

Then Easter happened. I ate a little too much, especially sweets which led to more sweets, which led to more sweets…… and I was back into a relationship with my old friend Sugar.

Now, those of you who don’t have problems with Sugar and Chocolate won’t understand this so you can stop reading now. But for those of you who understand what I’m talking about, please keep reading.

This morning I decided to Tap on what I was feeling. It went something like this…

Even though I planned this 6 Week Matrix Weight Loss Class when things were going really well with food, I’ve fallen off the wagon and I’m feeling too embarrassed to do this, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.

Even though I could choose to go back off of sugar (and gluten and dairy which I’ve learned the hard way is the only way I’ve found so far to lose weight post menopause), I don’t want to. At this point, I broke the rules and didn’t stick to the famous EFT ender, I love and accept myself. Instead, I went straight into “Rant and Tap” and just said what I was feeling which went something like this: I don’t want to give up my good friend Sugar. I’ll be too lonely! I’ll feel deprived. I’ll feel sad. I really will feel lonely. Tap, tap, tap…..

Wow! Had I really said that? I’ll be lonely without Sugar? Obviously, I’m already feeling lonely and Sugar doesn’t really make me feel better; it just masks it for a few minutes. Stuffs down the feelings for a few minutes and then I get to go into the ever faithful feeling of Guilt. Guilty for eating this way, guilty for not being perfect, guilty for not being the perfect Mother, embarrassed and ashamed of not being the perfect EFT Practitioner (especially since my focus is on Emotional Eating), etc…. (I’m feeling really vulnerable sharing all this with you so I’m tapping as I type)

So I tapped and cried this morning until I realized that I am still At Choice. I can choose to find Community to be in to deal with the loneliness and the subsequent guilt I’m feeling and not turn to chocolate or I can continue to turn to chocolate. Maybe a little bit of both.

The interesting thing that I hope most of you have found to be true too, is that since I brought all this up and tapped on my feelings, my desire for sugar has gone way down. To be honest, it hasn’t totally gone away and I believe I’ll choose to listen to my own The Sweet Life call (if you don’t have this recording and would like to listen to it, please let me know and I’ll share the recording) so I can Tap directly on the desire for Sugar in my body and my resistance to giving it up again.

And I’m going to go through with offering the 6-Week Matrix Weight Loss Class in May. I’m kicking it off with a free call this Friday, May 5th entitled Hello from your Future Body at 12 noon Eastern time. I hope you’ll join me for the free call and maybe the 6-week class if you feel so led.

I’m not perfect. I don’t have all the answers. I’ve lost 40 lbs from my top weight, the last 20 with EFT and yet, to be honest, there are still times that I struggle and I keep working on it. I’ve learned a great deal and have helped many people with their own emotional eating and yet I’m not perfect. So if you are looking for a weight loss class from someone who has it all totally figured out and has no problems, please look elsewhere. However, if you’d like to join in my Community and learn and grow with us, I welcome you with open arms.

 

 

The ABC’s of Change

What are you attempting to change in your life? Your relationship with food? Your relationship with your body? Maybe your relationship with money? Whatever changes you are making, this simple technique can help you get there. I like to think of it as inviting your Future Self or Optimal Self to run the show. So here it goes.

Start by asking yourself this simple question: What am I currently saying to myself? How am I speaking to myself? In a loving, supportive, life-changing way? Or in a nagging, judging, Ego-centered way?

These questions will lead to the ABC’s of Change (There’s actually A, B, C, D here but that’s just too challenging to simplify into a good title) 

A =Awareness
Awareness of how you’re currently treating yourself. You gotta start with Awareness. You obviously can’t change anything without being aware of where you are. Asking yourself the question above leads us to awareness. Simply observing your own words and thoughts is the beginning of lasting change.

B=Breathe (and Tap)
Take just a moment to breathe. (Of course, I’ll add Tap in here, too, but again that doesn’t work well with my ABC plan.)
Simply breathe and Tap on your collarbone stop (Not familiar with this Tapping modality? Learn more here). As you center yourself with your breath, go to the next question below.

C=Create what you really want
Now here’s the important part: Ask yourself: What would my Optimal Self say or do in this moment? From awareness and breathing for a moment, think about how your Optimal Self would deal with this situation. Maybe it’s your Naturally Thin Self who would choose to eat an apple with almond butter instead of cookies for a snack, or your Prosperous Self might choose not to buy the purse to hold on to her money for later gratification instead of instant gratification in this moment. You have your best answers if you simply allow your Best Self or Optimal Self to make your choices.

D= Daily
Make this and/or other practices that support you in becoming your Optimal Self part of your life every day. Hopefully, you wouldn’t even consider not brushing your teeth one day so that is a daily practice that supports you in your dental health. Now what daily practices can you incorporate into your life to support your emotional/energetic health?

Try out the ABC’s of Change and let us know how it goes for you. You really do have what it takes to achieve your Best Life now.

Did You Just Eat a Serving of Guilt?

We’re just days into the new year. If you’re like many of us, you might have resolved to eat better — to eliminate sugar, to do better with carbs, to watch your calories, to monitor your fat intake. And by now, this might not have gone so well. You might have “slipped” up. You might have indulged at one time or another. You might have given into temptation.

I want you to know, that if you have, it is a-okay.

You do not deserve to further punish yourself with a serving of guilt. Let it go. Forgive yourself. You are doing the absolute best you can do with the circumstances that you are given. Punishment, shame, and guilt are not going to help.

Here are my 4 steps to help you release the guilt:

Step 1: Learn from this situation. Release that you overate for a reason.  No, using food as an emotional release is not the healthiest coping strategy, but it’s still a coping strategy. It’s giving you a break or a release that you’re looking for. It wasn’t simply a lapse in willpower; it was a way of comforting yourself or dealing with your feelings in a way that is comfortable and familiar.

Step 2: Ask yourself, “What am I really hungry for?” Are you hungry for a release from stress? Are you hungry for love and attention from a loved one? Tap into what is really causing the eating trigger. How can you soothe yourself in other ways? For example, if you are hungry for a release from stress, could you get yourself outside in nature, or take a soothing bubble bath, or call a friend to vent? Brainstorm ways in which you can feed your soul to help you with your emotional hunger.

Step 3: Choose to forgive. Just be willing to accept and love yourself in this moment. Say aloud right now: “I choose to love, accept and forgive me.”

Step 4: Watch my tapping video where I lead you through a tapping sequence where you can forgive yourself. (This video is from Facebook live in the 21 Day Tapping Cleanse. I apologize that the video and the words didn’t sync correctly so you might enjoy listening and tapping along more than watching)

I promise you that guilt doesn’t get you anywhere but deeper into your own mess. When you forgive yourself for struggling, you will be able to pull yourself back up, dust off your knees, and pick up right where you left off.

The One Thing I’m Most Grateful For

With Thanksgiving this week, I bet you’ve been reflecting on what you’re grateful for. I hope you’ve been able to come up with a long list, as we each truly have so much to appreciate and this is not the time to take it for granted.

I’m wondering though if you put your body on that list. Did it even make the top 10? Do you take it for granted?

Consider these facts about the human body:

  • On average, your body takes about 16 breaths per minute, 960 breaths an hour, 23,040 breaths a day, 8,409,600 a year. A person who lives to 80 years old will take about 672,768,000 breaths in a lifetime.
  • Your heart beats about 100,000 times a day and about 35 million times a year. During an average lifetime, the human heart will beat more than 2.5 billion times.

It’s easy to take your body for granted. You don’t know what you’re missing until — well — you’re missing it!

I urge you to take a moment this week and to stop missing it.

Consider practicing gratitude for your body (this week and beyond). Take this opportunity to send divine love, nourishment, approval, appreciation and gratitude to this precious gift that you live in.

I know that you are incredibly busy this week, but I invite you to:

  1. Listen to my 5-minute audio recording called “Bliss Break for Body Love.” This recording is sure to help you nourish and appreciate your body. It will help put you in touch with the pure magic that you are.
  1. Write a thank you note to your body. It could be something short and sweet like, “Thank you for sticking by me through the diets and punishing workouts. I am so grateful for my strong beating heart and breath.” Or write a top 10 — or top 50! — list of everything your body has helped you do throughout the years.

Remind yourself of your magnificence. Remind yourself of all of the things that your body takes care of for you daily…without you even noticing. From helping you take your first steps to learning to play soccer to carrying your child to helping that child move into their college dorm room to running a race to gardening.

There are so many things that your body has enabled you to do.

When you take a minute to think about everything your body does, it’s pretty awesome how much stuff you can come up with. It’s the least you can do for something that supports you every second of your life here on earth.

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Where’s Your Focus?

Cravings Driving Your Crazy?

The Power of the Pause

Nick told me these 3 things…

3 powerful steps are all you need to create more peace and healing in your life.

An EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) or Matrix Reimprinting session can be boiled down to just 3 steps. These 3 steps are not only powerful for an EFT or MR session, but they can be applied to your everyday life for more peace, understanding and overall healing. I learned these 3 steps from Nick Ortner’s presentation on Saturday, October 15th at the very last Hay House I Can Do It Conference in Fort Lauderdale.

Here’s the 3 steps to take for a happier life:

  1. Calm it Down
    Whenever we are triggered or upset by something in life, we receive a painful message and we can’t think straight in that particular moment. The prefrontal cortex, the logical thinking part of the brain, goes “offline” and we are functioning from a more basic level of the brain and we just can’t think clearly. We react instead of thinking things through. Another way of looking at this comes from a talk I heard between Cheryl Richardson and Jessica Ortner in the 2016 Tapping World Summit. Cheryl told Jessica that when you are in your ‘stuff,’ you are reacting from the age that you feel in that moment, so of course, you don’t have access to your adult resources to help you. Think about this. If your boss yells at you and you feel like you did when your Dad yelled at you at 5 years old, at that moment, you react like a 5-year-old. In that moment, it is hard to know how to handle it. You can handle this moment by simply tapping. With just tapping you will calm yourself down, your cortisol levels will drop, and you’ll be able to think about how you, the “adult You,” wants to handle the situation.
  2. Clean Up the Past
    Remember that example of the 5-year-old being yelled at by her Dad? That memory is exactly the type of thing that EFT or Matrix Reimprinting is beautiful at healing. Many people know about EFT or Tapping but less is known about Matrix Reimprinting (MR). In MR, we simply imagine seeing the scene from the past and the “now You” or “adult You” goes into that scene to help the “child You” from the past. Although we can’t change the past, we can change our perception and how the information is stored in our memories to be more empowering. Our perception is where all of our pain lies. If we change our perception, we change our life. The overall result is that as you heal wounds from the past, you are left feeling more loved and empowered.
  3. Create a Compelling Future
    And now, here’s the best part of all. As you calm yourself down about whatever is your issue at the moment, heal the past events that led to a possible over-reaction or being triggered in that situation, you now have the bandwidth to focus on what you really want and can create the life of your dreams. You’re out of survival mode. You can think clearly. You can dream big dreams.
    This is not meant to be difficult, and although you might not go from 0 to 60 in 1 minute, changes can be made pretty quickly. With that being said, this is a practice. A way of life. A continual looking at how you are handling things today and how you could handle things differently from here on out.
    So much more is possible for your life than you may have ever realized and with a daily practice that might include: tapping, meditation, prayer, yoga, etc… you really do get closer and closer to the life of your dreams.

Thanks, Nick, for drilling down what happens in a powerful EFT session into 3 simple steps. I think we all appreciate keeping it simple.

Where’s Your Focus?

I live in the Charlotte North Carolina area. We’ve just had a sad reminder that life is not all rainbows and unicorns. I admit I prefer to focus on the positive, to focus on what is good in life, not what is sad or painful. And yet, sh*t happens.

I just finished retaking EFT and Matrix Reimprinting (MR) training in Surfside Beach (just south of Myrtle Beach for those of you who may not know) with Alina Frank and Craig Weiner. It was fabulous to connect and learn with others on this healing path. The focus of EFT and MR is to heal trauma in our lives. As much as I’d like to pretend stuff doesn’t happen, it does and yet the good news is, it truly can be healed.

So here are a few thoughts on how to handle your emotions around painful or hard events in your life.

1. Get Grounded. Take a moment to simply notice your body and where it is. Feel your feet on the ground. Notice your body on the chair (or whatever you’re sitting or lying on). Look around and notice what is around you. Maybe a lamp, a chair, etc…. Just being very present can be grounding and calming.

2.“Right here, right now, I’m OK” Take a moment to simply breathe and focus on that fact that right here, right now, you are OK. This statement, “Right here, right now, I’m OK” is often used in Tapping to help calm and contain your feelings in the moment. If you feel upset when watching or listening to the news, simply take a few calming, grounding breaths as you tell yourself, “right here, right now, I’m OK.”

3. Take good care of yourself. What and who are your resources? Your friends, family, counselors, coaches you can talk with. Your practices that support you. Prayer, meditation, journaling your feelings, tapping, exercise, listening to music to calm or comfort you. Remember to take great care of your emotional health especially when things look or feel uncomfortable around you.

4. Get professional help if needed. I use the analogy that Tapping or EFT is like dental health. You need to brush everyday. Tapping can be used like that, sorta emotional daily brushing. But just like there are times you need to see your dentist for bigger needs, there are times you need help to deal with your emotions. Some signs to look for might include: having trouble functioning well at work or at home, experiencing excessive levels of fear or or worry, or using food or alcohol to feel better. Please reach out to me when you feel you may need more help.

5. Focus on the bigger picture. Depending on your spiritual beliefs, you may find solace in seeing the situation or event as a piece in a larger puzzle that as humans we simply don’t understand. There may be a higher purpose to all things that we term as “bad” when in reality from a spiritual perspective, “It’s all good”. What if all of this is happening for us, instead of to us?

Simply put, I believe our real purpose is to spread love in all situations and yet sometimes we need a little help to get there.

Sending you love, today and always,

Ruthi

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Are You a Victim?

5 Ways to Tame the Critical Voice

Woman looks at colorful light reflections over the lake waters

We all let that critical voice in every so often. You know the voice I’m talking about — the one that tells you you’ll never be good enough. The voice that says, “I don’t deserve to be happy,” and “Who in the world do you think you are?”

This voice doesn’t feel good and at times, this voice can take us into a deep dark depression. But it’s important to remember that when something doesn’t feel good, that it’s probably a lie and worth exploring to find the truth.

But how do we distinguish that voice? How do we ignore it and not let it ruin our day? How do we conquer this negative voice?

Here are my top 5 tips to help you tame the critical voice:

  1. Accept and appreciate all of you including what you perceive as flaws.

Flaws and failure are part of the human condition. And even if you look at the person next to you and believe with all your heart that they “have it all,” you’re wrong. Every person on the planet has screwed up. Every person has mental, physical, or emotional imperfections. And every person is keenly aware of his or her flaws and failures. If there are things that you do not like about yourself, have a willingness to change them. However, the things that you cannot change, accept them for what they are. You are brilliant not despite of these imperfections but because of these imperfections. They are what make you, you, which is a human being who has strived, survived and thrived at times.

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.” – Reinhold Niebuhr

You can repeat this serenity prayer often. Just by stating your intention to accept what you can’t change and having the courage to change what you can, you start working toward the love and acceptance that you are seeking.

  1. Focus on your positive traits and ways that you can serve and shine in the world.

You have gifts. You would not be on this planet at this time if you did not have gifts to give. And they don’t have to be huge, overly elaborate gifts either. Think of all of the beautiful ways you have expressed love to others. Cooking for your family, babysitting your grandchild, listening to your neighbor, praying for your friend, smiling at the stranger…these are all ways you add light to this world. You are a shining light. I am most certain of it and I don’t want you to forget it.

  1. Put emphasis on being in excellence instead of striving for perfection

Stop being so hard on yourself and striving to be perfect! Perfection is completely unattainable — it simply doesn’t exist. Striving for it will only make you feel miserable and shameful when you don’t achieve it.

Steve Jobs once said:

“Your time is limited so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important have the courage to follow your heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

This quote reminds us of what’s really important – to be true to who we are and let go of the unattainable perfectionist thinking.

  1. Monitor your critical voice.

Pay attention to how many times each day that you are critical to yourself. How do you speak to yourself? What themes are overall present with what you say about yourself and to yourself? Know that this critical voice is not coming from your authentic higher self, but rather from the ego that is trying to keep you safe. This critical voice tells lies. It is not telling you the truth. Always remember that if a thought doesn’t feel good, you have the power to think a better feeling thought. Change your thoughts. Change your life.

“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” ~William Shakespeare

  1. Love yourself with daily attention to self-care!

It is important to take great care of yourself. If you don’t take care of yourself, no one else will. It has to start with you. The way that you honor and love yourself shows the world how to honor and love you. Lead by example. A great way to do this is with daily self-care. Daily meditation, prayer, yoga, EFT (tapping) are all wonderful examples of how to incorporate a loving expression of taking care of you. It feels fabulous to give yourself attention and love in this way and I absolutely know that you deserve it.