DAY 1 – Today I arrive at Optimum Health Institute with one goal: Heal myself so I can be a better mother. My pregnancy was tough, I gained 65 pounds and I was in labor for 32 hours. Now, I have a beautiful 7 month old, but the truth is that I am worn out and tired. I have not taken care of my body (the only one I was given!) and I have been super stressed out. Motherhood is tougher than I expected. So, I took a week to spend time to focus on becoming a better person by understanding what I need for my body, mind and soul.

DAY 2Letting go. What I learned today was that we cause so much stress by expecting others to changes to be what we want. We try to put square pegs in round holes and the truth is – we can’t change others. We can only change ourselves. Once we realize this truth we can LET GO of others and FOCUS on living our best lives. Accepting the fact that people have different values is key. If those values don’t meet yours, then perhaps it is time to step up and start creating the life YOU WANT….

“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.”

– William Ernest Henley

DAY 3Listen to your body. You talk to your body, sometimes negative things like, “I’m fat.” Your body listens and confirms what you say. So, be aware of your thoughts. What is great is that your body talks to you too. Every thing from gut feelings, sickness, headaches, and jitters is our body’s way of “talking.” What we need to do is listen. Take a moment in the morning and ask, “My beautiful body, what do you need today?” And listen. You might get thoughts like, “Rest, water, touch, or exercise.” If you’re about to do something that you’re not sure you really want to do. ASK! Your body will answer with a definitive YES or NO. Simple, yet powerful.

DAY 4Five Regrets of the Dying. We heard a story about a women who worked in hospice care for years and she listened to hundreds of people who were about to die. The regrets were always the same:

1. “I wish that I had the courage to live the life that I wanted.”
2. “I wish that I did not work so hard.”
3. “I wish I had the courage to express my feelings.”
4. “I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.”
5. “I wish I let myself be happy.”

Personally, I suffer from “letting myself be happy.” When I wake up, the first thing I think is not, “WOW another beautiful day!” My tasks and responsibilities hit me in the face and, if anyone ‘offended’ me the day before, I remember that too. I don’t want to be that way anymore. So, my commitment is to BE HAPPY when I get home. Life is pretty amazing and we are all blessed. Thanks for reading – I love you!

Day 5Live in the NOW. They have a saying her at OHI: “What time is it?” And the answer is “NOW.” There is nothing but the NOW. We get stuck in our heads, feeling regret about the past and getting worried about the future. But they don’t exist. In my life I struggle with staying in the NOW, I am always running off to some dark corner of my past or racing to a worrisome place in the future. One of the ways they teach us to stay in the NOW is to connect with our breath. 3 minutes without breathing and we die, so our breath is a powerful tool to use to get us back into our bodies and in the present moment. When you find yourself getting caught up in a negative past/future loop, stop and take 3 deep, conscience breaths and ask yourself, “What time is it?” The time is NOW.

DAY 6Celebrate Small Successes. Kyle Ruppe is here to change his life. On January 3, he was diagnosed with ALS: Lou Gehrig’s disease. This 29 year old is FILLED with joy and love. His smile lights up the room. He is here with his friend Chris who is his biggest fan (besides me!). Kyle saw Chris making his bed and asked him why he did that every morning. Chris said, “Because I like to celebrate small successes. When I make the bed I feel like I accomplished something, it’s a great way to start the day.” What a life-changing moment for me. Yes, it is time for us to take time and celebrate, no matter how small the accomplishment. I went back to my room and made my bed, and did a little dance to celebrate my success.

DAY 7 – I feel so connected to myself now. This week has given me an opportunity to rest, heal and learn. I am so grateful for this time. Now, it’s time to go home and implement what I have learned. My intention is give everyone I meet some joy, hope or inspiration. That’s it!