BALANCE... an all-important elixer of life to keep equilibrium... a much sought after space of mind, heart and Being. Renew yourself!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Creative Cardio

My goodness it was a long winter here on the west coast of Canada... snowfall after snowfall... SO unusual for this region. I feel as though I am just NOW coming out of hibernation, like a big old grouchy bear hungry for spring.

Five perfectly sunny days in a row over this past week has perked me right up and I suddenly feel awake again! I don't know about you but the lack of light and the cold weather really affects me. Signs of spring are emerging slowly again and I am EXCITED! To think that Daylight Savings is but a mere month away gets me squeeling at the elongated daylight and the possibilities it presents to stretching each day's activities.

One of the immediate motivations that has increased for me this last while is my interest in fitness. Waking up with the early morning sunrise, I am again out for daily power walks and am sometimes even following it with a 20-minute core strength video session, to tighten up my abs and back mucles. By my 50th birthday this June I intend on being as buff as possible.

How are you doing with your fitness goals?
It can be quite easy to insert cardio exercises into the day, even if going to the gym is not your thing. There are a variety of ways to get a decent cardio workout without getting bored or having to go far from home. Here are four ideas to help you get started;
  1. Seek out and use stairs wherever you can find them. Avoid using elevators and you'll add great heart-pumping exercise to your day.

  2. Park at the furthest end of the parking lot and get in a little walk to the entrance of where you're going.
  3. Thirty minutes of walking at a moderate pace can burn calories and help tone and strengthen your muscles. Walking outdoors give you time in nature and breathing (hopefully) fresh air.

  4. Jump rope (or even imagine you're jumping a rope)... it's fun! Do you know that jumping rope can burn about 200 calories in 15 minutes (which is as many or more calories one burns while running).

  5. Dance, either at home to some hot music or with a partner. Sign up for dance classes! Ballroom dancing can be great fun and a great workout too. There are many different dance styles to experiment with.

Go on, muster your willingness to get up off the sofa and get moving in some small ways. As you infuse your week with two or three (even) small movement sessions, you'll notice how great it feels and soon you'll notice the many benefits to your body and mind.

I'll be routing for you!

Warmly, Carolyn
Our "BEST YOU Possible" eBook is available at

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Monday, January 19, 2009

Completing Undesirable Projects

So, it is so three weeks later and we are FINALLY free from the serious snowfalls we had! Did you see the snow photo in my last blog entry? What an AMAZING unusual winter we're having! As of yesterday, after almost a month, our steep driveway can FINALLY be used again and now I am counting the weeks to spring's arrival. I swear I'm going to find a way to spend winter away from now on... and I live on the WEST coast... heavens, I can't even imagine what it would be like to live back east.

I suppose if there is a good thing to being snowed in, it's that it's given me additional time to reflect on the successes and shortfalls of last year... and to consider what I'd like to make fresh for this new year.

I don't know about you, but I love being tidy, having things in their right place and excess "stuff" GONE! A serious incompletion from last year that has been pulling at my attention has been the condition of my office desk and files. Papers have piled up that need filing, accounting needing finishing and submissions made to our accountant... afterall, it is coming up tax time soon. What a drag of negative energy I'd pulled forward into my New Year!

So, I piled in, finished, sorted, filed... yes, I also grumbled and groaned... then did even more sorting, filing and finishing. The result? I am caught up on some otherwise butt-dragging projects that were eating energy and pulling at me, even when I wasn't aware they were!

Do you have any unfinished projects like mine that are pulling at you? Likely you do! These unfinished projects do not promote Work and Life Balance.
Well, I highly recommend that you "bite the bullet" and dive into the very center of your chaos... for the sake of moving ahead with clean, clear, fresh momentum. Get caught up so you can be free.

I personally feel more liberated with my paperwork projects completed. Of course, there will always be other projects to divert my attention to next, but at least I've made progress with the undesirable ones so I can now also move on to the GREAT projects too, such as sorting and framing my favourite photographs.

To help you, here's my list of necessary ingredients to accomplish "that" unfinished task...
  1. a delicious pot of tea (or coffee)

  2. an internal parent plunking you down into that chair, telling you to "stay there until you're done" ... (joke, smile, tease)

  3. little nibbly foods to munch on as you work, preferably health ones such as an apple or almonds

  4. a stretch break every 30 minutes

  5. a pat on the back or a hug every hour, either from yourself or from a loved one congratulating you for a good job being done

  6. a reward at the end of the day, such as a long walk in nature, or a bubble bath

Completing old and unfinished projects will open space to create something new for this New Year. Don't just read this, try it out for yourself... you'll experience first hand how great it will feel!

Warmly, Carolyn

P.S. This is a super time to get your copy of our "BEST YOU' eBook... an inspiring toolkit FULL of ideas for you remaking yourself! More on decluttering, too.

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Friday, December 26, 2008


Christmas has come and gone... and my, what an emotionally rich one, indeed. I hope yours was an upbeat celebration of family and love.

The west coast of Canada has been buried in the deepest snow we've seen in at least ten years and though it is a pain in the "you-know-what" to move around, it is pure magic, too. Here's a shot of our home, taken yesterday (before yet another 8 inches fell!)

One of the Christmas emails I received today is a 15-minute little film called "Validation," all about the magic of looking for the best in people. I couldn't resist sharing it with you, here's the link...

As we near the end of yet another year, what a great opportunity to reflect on the goodness of your past 12 months and to begin generating images and wishes for your coming year. Next time I write, I'll pose some ideas for you to ponder so you can begin to manifest that which you desire for your health, life and love.

In the meantime, enjoy this film... and if you feel inclined, let me know what you think of it.

Warmly, Carolyn

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Confessions of A Work & Life Balance Coach

Okay, I have a confession to make...

... this Work and Life Balance Coach (ME!) is currently a lousy example of work and life balance, living terribly out of kilter and running around in a terrible scurry these last months. I inadvertantly allowed life's craziness to take ahold of me, life's doled out a few hard knocks and I'm still not back in equilibrium yet. THIS is the reason you have not heard from me in a long stretch now.

How can I POSSIBLY write about balance and stillness and applying good practices if I am not congruent to my own message?!?! So, I've simply chosen to not write for this period of time.

I've been asking myself, "How did I let myself get so over-committed in work, work and even more work?"

How did I fall completely off of my fitness over these last eight weeks since our local Curves fitness center closed? (Gee I miss that great little program!)

How did I think it okay to begin eating anything and everything in sight without bathroom scale repercussions these last weeks?!? Eating chocolate every day tastes great but begins to show in the love handles fairly quickly! (How ironic that my last blog writing was about me doing a raw food cleanse for a seriously committed month! Did I EVER spin out from that!)

The loss of my fitness routine combined with the Christmas holidays and all the rich food temptations, my hips have widened by TEN pounds since the summer! I am definitely in a "tight pants" place in my self image again... moan... after I was feeling at my VERY best late July.


There's my confession! I feel better for it, too. It's just true, I'm no Work and Life Balance saint these days.

Thankfully, a New Year is almost upon us... a time to refocus, set some goals and get myself aligned as we move into spring again. My best "flourishing" happens between spring and late fall each year and I desire to move south for winter from now on. Winter, I recognize is consistently the hardest time of the year for me.

With my 5oth birthday looming next June, it inspires me to get back on the Work and Life Balance bandwagon!

You'll hear from me more frequently now that I've "fessed up!"

Warmly, Carolyn

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Monday, November 03, 2008

Raw Food Cleanse

I have been focussed whole-heartedly on a month long raw food cleanse... that's why you've not heard from me in that long.

Always one to eat healthfully anyways, I decided to take it one serious step further and experiment with eating entirely raw for the first time. I’ve done well with it, liking the ease and energy of it all.

My commitment has been on making "Green Smoothies" as my morning and lunch-time meals, consisting of various pieces of fresh fruit as well as a few leafy greens blended together in the blender. (As I write, I am drinking a smoothie made with a banana, 1/4 of a pineapple, 1/2 an avocado, an orange, tsp. of bee pollen and 3 leaves of swiss chard... yup, you read it right.. and it's delicious!)

Later in the day I get my chewing satisfaction by eating a great salad... colourful with variety and now including a sprinkle of nuts and tuna, shrimp or chicken.

Ugh... the first week of cutting out dairy, wheat and meat launched me into a flu-like detoxifying condition for awhile. I got through the more serious symptoms of stuffy head and nose-blowing after approximately ten days... I suspect a by-product of having eaten a fairly high degree of dairy products pre-cleanse.

After eating 100% raw for the first two weeks, I admit to feeling that it was too radical for me and the temptations to totally blow it came forward, so I made a few shifts and vow that moderation needs to be more my way for now. Subsequently, I have settled into preferring a 95% raw plan, with inclusions of fish, hard boiled eggs, occasional bowls of non-dairy based soups, chicken, steamed veggies and even dark chocolate. I'm also allowing an occasional glass of red wine. Perhaps I’ll want to take raw a bit deeper at a later stage.

So, in addition to feeling much better and having more energy, I’ve lost another 4 pounds since going raw, down to the same slim and nicely comfortable weight I was at ten years ago… and down a total of 19 pounds from this time last year when I began my personal growth seminars at Haven on Gabriola Island. I’d gotten pretty “curvy” over the last ten years… two pounds gained each year over time. Thank goodness fitness has been in my daily routine... it's the greatest gift to myself, always has been and always will be. I'm feeling pretty good about my figure right now! : )

Here's another BIG difference from my cleansing month...

In addition to the “de-cluttering” of my physical body through raw eating, I have also been de-cluttering our home for a short 20 minutes each day… one closet, one drawer, one box at a time!

I went through my entire clothing closet and extracted 1/3 of the items I'd been keeping, some for 15 years. Business suits (no longer in style and not worn for 10 years), multi-sized items that no longer suit or even fit me... they're gone! My vanity dresser has been cleared of lotions and potions, cosmetics, hair barrettes, nail polishes, etc.

Next came de-cluttering our kitchen. A box of food went to our local Food Bank and six boxes of Tupperware containers, cookbooks, chachkas, flower vases, dishes... you name it... went to our local Ladies Auxiliary Store. They'll sell it and raise $$$ for necessary equipment at our St. Mary's Hospital here in Sechelt... so I'm not only helping ME, but others as well. Cool, hey!

I'm feeling more free and empowered as I...
  • complete unfinished projects
  • scan and saving digital photos

  • catch up accounting

  • and get rid of piles of paper
… so, even home is slowly getting cleaned up and more streamlined. Wow, this added component is such a HUGE piece to putting order to feeling freer and creating a simpler life!
Raw food isn't for everyone, but even the inclusion of a "green smoothie" into your diet and doing some de-cluttering of home can make space for big changes to come forward.

Feeling healthier overall,


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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Watsu Water Therapy

Thanks for visiting my Work and Life Balance Blog.

I had THEE most bliss-inducing experience recently and I am eager to tell you about it!

Have you heard of Watsu water therapy? Watsu is gaining recognition for its incredible benefits to body, mind and soul.

The Sunshine Coast of British Columbia is now blessed to have had a beautiful, new Watsu water therapy pool and spa open recently. Fortunate me, I got to experience a water session (as a thank you for being a "photo model" for the website of this new spa facility).

Here's me in the photo below being loving supported and guided by my friend and sensitive Watsu practitioner, Taylore Sinclair. Being gently moved, rocked, massaged and swirled around in the water sent me into immediate bliss... even while a photographer was taking photographs!

So, what is Watsu? Here's a description I found to explain it...

"Watsu is a unique form of aquatic bodywork that is practiced in a warm pool environment. It is a very soothing type of massage that takes place in warm, waist-deep water. Its name comes from a combination of the words “water” and “shiatsu.”

It was developed by Harold Dull back in 1980, when he started applying Zen Shiatsu stretches to students floating in the warm pool at Harbin Hot Springs in California. Small floats are used to keep the body buoyant, helping to create a thermal and gravitational state of homeostasis in which the receiver’s external experience is aligned with our body’s internal state.

With Watsu, the client is supported by the practitioner and the experience is profoundly personal; the eyes typically close, the ears under water do not track for sound, and the brain wave patterns deepen to an alpha state similar to that of meditation."

Taylore twirled me through the water, one way then another, taking my body through a series of passive stretches and twists, applying various shiatsu pressure points throughout the water session. I found being held and moved in the comfortably warm water deeply relaxing. My attention turned inward, my breath deepened, my mind became quiet and my body found it's own unique pattern of movement. I felt an almost immediate sense of well-being as my busy outer world fell away and my attention turned to the present moment.
In addition to the emotional, spiritual benefits, Watsu has a good therapeutic effect on the body the water allowing the spinal column to be moved in ways that aren't possible on land. Allowing myself to be cradled in another's arms in deepish water was a positive experience in trusting that someone is there to support me. Aches disappeared and I felt like liquid both in and out of the pool later. I came away feeling deeply relaxed, emotionally opened AND I slept like a baby that night!
Please visit Taylore (and husband, Bill's) beautiful website for more information...

... (you'll see me "starring/floating" in the photographs)...

I hope to Watsu again really soon... and you might want to check this lovely healing method out for yourself, too.

Love, Carolyn

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Sunday, September 07, 2008

Carolyn's Update

Hope all’s well for you and you’ve enjoyed the summer. Mine has been fast and furiously full… and I am happily pooped.

In addition to my continued involvement with our counselling business, I have re-incarnated my earlier profession as a furniture refinisher. I always love the hands-on transformational aspect of working with wood, so I’ve been growing a little home-based business over the last few months and am enjoying working on people’s antique pieces of furniture. I've set up a little blog at ... come and see the before and after photos of my work.

As a means to replenish my “social batteries” after so long at the computer writing my "Becoming the BEST YOU Possible" eBook, I accepted a job last May as an auxiliary worker for the Government Liquor Store (of all places!) to last through the busy tourist-laden summer here on the coast. It is seriously hard work lifting and uncasing boxes, stocking shelves and cashiering. For now, it is absolutely perfect, meeting my criteria of getting out of my head and working actively with my strong body, being a part of an upbeat team and interacting with my community members. Goodness, I’ve never done so many squats in all of my life.

So, THESE are the reasons you have not heard from me in a LONG while! I've never been so busy... and now the summer has wound down. This is my time to reach out and say, "Yes, I AM still here" and to refocus on MY work and life balance.

P.S. I had a wonderful Watsu water therapy experience recently and I look forward to sharing it with you... tomorrow... please tune in again.

Warmly, Carolyn

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