14 Ways to Nourish your Heart and Soul

Hey y’all!   Bet you didn’t expect to hear from me for another year! LOL.   All kidding aside, this is actually a pretty serious post.  The last few days the universe has been sending me messages.

STOP, don’t leave my blog because that sounds a bit crazy.

WAIT! This post just might be exactly what you need to read to help change your mindset, be happy and lose the weight

Hear me out.

The other day I was scrolling Facebook as one does when they are avoiding housework, or laundry or something of the sort. I totally get that people out there on social media are sharing only the good parts of their life, some might even be manufacturing things to post on Social Media to make life look extra good.  But scrolling through and looking at the happy vacation photos of friends I haven’t had a real conversation with in years as they dine at sunset somewhere tropical or ski with their kids on a snow day, or pose with their new puppy (kitty/llama/pig/chicken/goldfish) a thought popped into my head.  I wasn’t comparing my life to theirs, I wasn’t feeling sorry for myself or anything but it hit me that living life 100-ish lbs overweight is NOT living MY best life.  Ok, I admit. Obviously I knew that already.  But this was different.  It hit home hard.  It flipped a switch.  It seemed to open my mind a little wider and adjust my mindset.  My weight is truly is holding me back from the things in life I want to do.  Then the dog barked and the timer went off on the stove and the cat hissed at the other dog and my husband’s phone rang and the thought was fleeting, but my mind/heart remained open.

Fast forward to today.  I heard someone talking about living life with an “open heart.”  Tuning in and listening more carefully I quickly realized he wasn’t talking about a Grey’s anatomy-style “open heart”.  He went to on to talk about how, when our heart is cluttered with the day to day stresses and turmoils, especially with the things we cannot control we cannot have an open heart to accept the things that really nourish us.  That’s when my mind started to wander ( too bad, because I bet he had lots of gems of wisdom to share.

Anyway, maybe my heart was open at that moment because this is where my mind wandered off to while I believe the universe was speaking to me. I swear, this is not stuff I would normally come up with on my own, [case in point, I am about to quote] Shaggy from Scooby-doo: “… it was like deep, Scoob, real deep”.

This is what the universe said (in the form of my thoughts):

Your heart has been cluttered.  You have been seeking nourishment for your heart in the form of food but that is not the nourishment your heart really needs. Your heart has to be open and nourished by the things that really make you feel nourished: happy, joyful, content, peaceful etc.  Do the things that make you feel nourished and you will not constantly be seeking that feeling with food.

Mind. Blown.

Ok – Here is what was promised.

14 Ways to Nourish your Heart and Soul

(In no particular order)

  1. A clean, organized home – The actual act of cleaning and organizing doesn’t do much for my heart to be honest – but the after effect sure does. Seeing my space clean and orderly feels so good.  When my home is disorganized, messy etc, the thoughts of the mess and what I should be doing about it clutter my heart and make me irritable.
  2. A walk among trees – We live in a rual environment and there are a lot of trees all around us, but it is not real forested around our home. Our land use to be part of a large farm.  It is still very meadowy (yes, grammar police I know that is not a real word).  I like to find a real green forest and take my time meandering through.  This is partly why I am not currently living my best life.  This is very difficult for me right now. My knees are sore My feet are sore and walking on uneven ground is difficult. A very good reason to stick to this journey.  There is scientific evidence that being in a green space/ being in nature is so good for us. Google it!
  3. Creating.  This will look different for everyone.  I enjoy writing.  Always have. So this Blog is actually something that provides nourishment to my heart.  I also enjoy some other crafts  ( I make wooden rustic signs and chalk boards out of thrifted, recycled items). For some people painting, music, drawing, sculpting, gardening, or cooking might be their creative nourishment.
  4. Exercise.  I wouldn’t normally say this is something I feel nourished by.  But the truth is, after a day in the sun moving my body even if it is a slow walk or an easy swim in the lake, I feel pretty good after.  So far I haven’t found a winter activity that does this for me! I will lump yoga in here for those that will comment that its not on the list.  Yoga isn’t my thing (tying my shoes is as close as I get at this point), but it is probably someone’s.
  5. A Nap.  Now napping can be a tricky one. Sometimes, a nap can make us feel worse if we are doing it to avoid other things.  But some days, when all the “work” is done (or done enough) and the sun is warm through the window a restorative nap feels glorious.
  6. The right people.  Now, I have to say, right now, in my life, I don’t have too many people I can call the right people (but you really only need 1 or 2).  I have a few people in my life right now that are energy sapping, difficult to be around some days, and make me turn to cookies or donuts (or booze) after they have been around. If you are lucky enough to have that friend that you belly-laugh with and feel good around – that’s your person.  Make the time.  I am blessed that my every day people ARE those people – even if they do leave every cupboard door open when making a snack (you know who you are).
  7. Quiet music, good lighting, a good book.   Enough said.
  8. Line Dried Sheets – Yes this is a material thing.  Literally. But climbing into fresh clean line dried sheets is AWESOME!
  9. Helping Others.  This is another one that takes some soul searching.  There is lots of chatter around giving back and doing for others all over the Internet, but I believe that the true spirit of the helping/giving is getting lost lots of the time. Helping others for the soul purpose of nourishing your own heart won’t have the same effect as helping to really help.  Let that sink in for a second.
  10. Not doing things that don’t nourish your heart! Ahhh Duuuuuhhhhh and a double negative to boot, you might be thinking. But (yes I started a sentence with “but”) does scrolling through Facebook when you have other things to do make you feel good?  Does an hour and twenty-five minutes spent watching the bachelor make you feel good? (Not this season anyway – what a train-wreck) Binge watching Netflix with unfolded laundry plaguing your mind? Buying random items you don’t need from Amazon? Eating something you didn’t plan to ? You get the idea.  Edit: I guess this one could also be called “being present”.
  11.  Identify your “why” in life.  Contemplate – why do you go to work every day? Its not for the money – well, it IS for the money, but what does the money provide for you? That’s the REAL reason.  Why do you want to lose weight? Why do you_________  Going through your day with your purpose in mind will nourish you.
  12. Align your life to your morals and values.  Take the time.  Identify the morals and values that are important to you then identify if you are truly living all aspects of your life in alignment with them.  This isn’t as easy at it sounds but living a life in balance with your morals and values will leave your heart open and uncluttered.
    And to be clear, just because I have identified these items as nourishing does NOT mean that I am fully there.  These are the items I have identified that I need work on, myself.
  13. Practice gratitude.  There are lots of books and web sites devoted to this. Not sure who to credit for this quote: being grateful for what you have, makes what you have, enough.  Constantly chasing that more, more, more is not nourishing.  Take the time and enjoy what you have.  Take pleasure in the little things.
  14. Take the time. Normally when I am looking for a snack I will grab the quick thing, the easy thing, the immediate thing. Taking the time to prepare some fruit on a plate makes me feel so much better. This isn’t just about food. Take time for the little things. Take a second and be in the moment, feel the sun on your face.

So, moving forward I am going to strive to keep my heart open and not cluttered with things that don’t matter in order to make room for the things that make me feel good and free and light.

Keep coming back, I will be adding sections for meal plans and recipes soon.

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