The Food and Workout tracking experiment – what an AHA-Moment!

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I haven’t tracked any food or workouts for 16 months!

SO WHAT? What’s the big deal?

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It is a huge deal once I tell you that I was bulimic and anorexic, had an obsessive approach to workouts and was tracking every pinch of salt or cinnamon!

That 16 months ago, I hit a wall. I was extremely tired and sick physically, ready to be hospitalized due to extreme bulimia. I seriously couldn’t hold a single meal. All due to the obsessive and distorted vision of my own body and of how I “should” look like to be loved, admired, appreciated and perceived as an amazing trainer or coach!

I tracked every single pinch of spices, salt and measured EVERYTHING obsessively for over 4 years (and when I couldn’t measure, I either didn’t eat or I purged to not track it). I tracked all activities, including workouts, calories burned, including cleaning, sex and who knows what, so I could subtract that from eaten food.

Pretty sick, isn’t it?

How did I manage to break that pattern? In this case, already a mental disorder?

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Imagine the situation when you hit the wall not the first time, but maybe 10th or 50th time and you are simply too tired, too sick and too depressive to keep going. Yet there is that “tiny, little, silent, almost not possible to hear” voice keeping you at the level of “let’s try, one more time, pleaseeeeeee”.
I hit that exact moment!

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In my book “The True Identity” [publishing Summer 2019] I wrote:

“November 2017, a day that started just like any of the others. (…) After yet another purging incident I went to a room where there was a huge mirror. For the last couple of months, I had avoided mirrors, hating what I saw. I didn’t know what made me look on this particular day but the image I saw this time wasn’t the extra small ‘fat’ girl but a person who was full of hatred, more hatred than anyone on this planet should be carrying.

The hate in my eyes was unbelievably huge. Words couldn’t fully express the view I saw.

(…) I have never seen my eyes in such deep darkness. They gazed straight at me and didn’t want to give up until I felt the hurt, they were showing me. They didn’t blink, holding me to the deep darkness of hate they expressed. The lightning coming from them was blinding me. They reminded me of how hateful I was. How ugly of a person I was. How worthless, miserable and pitiful I was.

I wanted to turn my head away from the image I saw. However, I simply couldn’t as someone was holding my head and telling me ‘look at yourself, look at who you have become, think about who you will be if you keep going along this path’.

My body tensed, my hands and fingers squeezing so hard that my knuckles went white. My fingers became impatient, wanting to start scratching my skin. I wanted to hurt myself, feel the pain on the physical side of it. I wanted to rip my skin away and keep scratching until I bled.

On that day the most magical phrase came out of my mouth.

‘I need help. I can’t do this by myself. Please help me’.

I cried as I realized that my stomach hurt. I was still hungry and I kept thinking that I shouldn’t eat anything anymore. I cried because deep inside of me I knew this is not the way it should be. I knew, in my heart, that this was not the true me. Deep inside of me, I knew, I had a mental eating disorder and that I could be cured.

I knew that there was no pill for it. The need for external validation, approval or feeling loved was not being helpful either.

The first thing I needed to do was to decide that enough is enough. Then I needed to ask for help.”

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So, fast forward, 16 months later, after not tracking a single spoon or sip of any food, I pulled up the app and … started again.
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But wait. This time I did it fully conscious, after thinking about it for a few days. I wanted to do it NOT for the sake of restricting my nutrition or putting myself back again in that mental, deprivation, restriction and obsessive mindset!

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I wanted to do that to test – myself, my ability to listen to my body, to see how my inner wisdom is guiding me and how that entire ‘tracking’ thing will make me feel.

**** Don’ take me wrong. I ask and encourage and even start the nutritional coaching with my clients from tracking. For the sake of building the awareness around what kind of food goes into their bodies, what type of foods are in their programs, what to eat and buy, and what foods make them feel bad or energized. It is also a way to create the habit of being aware of healthier food choices. However, I always make sure it is not getting into the obsessive addiction when my clients feel that they ‘need to’ or ‘should’ track because otherwise their worth is diminished. That is not the case and I monitor that closely! ****

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And AHA-MOMENT came with that experiment!

  • I felt pissed off at first – how come the app and the device tell me what MY body needs and how MY body should eat?
  • Then I felt scattered and little confused as for how the algorithms in these apps are made to create the ‘perfect’ calories in-and-out plan so people can follow it and feel better or.. worthy – that was not what I wanted the app to tell me! That is now what the app’s role is anyways!
  • Additionally, I ignored the app. According to it in the middle of the day, when I was hungry and wanted to give my body healthy foods, the app told me to stop because I was having too much of that and too little of that. Oh well, I turned it off and followed the wiser wizard I have ever known – MY BODY!

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At the end of the day, I know that tracking taught me something and that it’s not anymore my thing.

It taught me:

  • Discipline
  • Awareness around foods and nutrition
  • Consistency
  • Perseverance
  • Commitment
  • Creating a daily habit to journal.

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It is not anymore my thing because:

  • I listen to my body more
  • I feel what my body needs
  • I am aware of my healthy choices
  • I am very tuned in to my body
  • I am aligned and confident with who I am
  • I am confident with my food choices
  • I am into health, not restrictions
  • I know my worth
  • I don’t need an app to tell me all of the above!!!!

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And after you read this blog, all I want YOU to get out of it is that YOU too can live that way.

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Because I believe that restrictions, deprivation, obsessions, dieting, over-training and seeking external validation of self-worth never worked and will never work.

Until one taps within their own bodies and create the lifestyle where the authentic wellbeing, with physical, mental, emotional & spiritual health, is the priority.

No app, no diet, no magic pill, no wrap, no quick fix are the solutions. At least not sustainable.

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Your job is your choice!
My job is to bring awareness to the world and to YOU!

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I talked about that on my beYOUtiful Show episode #22. So worth to listen!
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P.S. I am so grateful for that experiment and that realization!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Do you know what it means to protect your energy?

** It means putting your experience, feelings, and happiness before others’ (which can be hard for people pleasers).

** It means being more aware of the relationships and dynamics in your life.
It means spending your time with those who respect your boundaries, time and self-care.

** It means spending your time with people who light you up, appreciate you, help you grow, and bring out the best in you.

** It means to nurture your wellbeing (physical, mental, emotional and spiritual) before others’.



“` If you have people in your life who are toxic, and you consistently feel depleted after spending time with them – set boundaries and stop sacrificing your energy and happiness for theirs.

“` If you are committed to the situations, events, and actions which drag you down and make you feel less than, set the boundaries, create the safe space and protect your happiness and energies!

—- If it feels good and calm on your soul and heart, it’s good for your energy. —-

—- If it’s depleting and dragging, it’s bad for your energy and you need to change or shift things ❤️ —-

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Let me share the story with you:

For the last couple of years, I have been experiencing and feeling more like introvert, an empath or highly sensitive person. For the person who used to be very outgoing, social and extroverted, that felt very uncomfortable at first. And it didn’t stop right away.

One day, one of my energy healer (for your info, I am supported today with the spiritual coach, energy healer and practitioner, naturopath, period and natural fertility coaches, and therapist) indicated that I need some protection.

‘Protection from what?’ – I asked.
‘Protection of your energies and aura from everything you are taking on’ – she replied

Then she went on explaining how being a highly sensitive person and empath and serving others, we tend to take lots of people’s energies, emotions and charge they carry onto us, without realizing that. Until we find ourselves in the emotional hole, where we feel depleted, tired, exhausted and even unmotivated or depressed.

It totally made sense to me!!!

I always was a sensitive person, who wanted to care for everyone. When I saw a homeless person, I cried. When I saw a poor person, I was giving all my lunch. When I saw a clean lady, I was the next day bringing my clothes for her kids. I truly cared and care a lot

And I truly take a lot on me, because I want to help…

…because I want this world to be better, kind, loving!

So after that, I started studying what being an empath and highly sensitive person means. And how I can protect myself as that person.

There are many tools out there, including books, blogs, videos and I am one of them sharing these with you today as well.

Today I use few tools. I do NOT use all of them at the same time, not even during the same day. I use what calls my name and what feels like it’s going to help me. I developed them, brought them into my life or adopted from others, just as I was connecting and working with myself.

Use your own body, heart, and intuition, and chose what YOU feel resonating with. Most importantly, use what makes you feel coming back home and being safe after you apply some of the tools you chose for self.

And I invite you to explore! Exploration and curiosity are the best companions to rediscovering our authentic welling and true identity.

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Tools I use:

Cord Cutting and Grounding practice.

This is the simplest practice which can be done ANYWHERE, even in public or in the car. It brings you back right to the spot where you are and disconnect from anything what affected your aura at that moment. Highly recommended!! I adopted that from my spiritual women’s coach Elizabeth DiAlto. She has that amazing practice on her website here: https://wildsoulmovement.com/energy-hygiene/

Meditation and Breathing practice.

This can be done within a couple of minutes to a longer time, as you need. Go with your own needs and feelings. If you need some silent moment when you breath deeply, do it. If you just want to do some breathing with minor stretches, do it. If it feels like guided meditation, go for it. If it feels like an hour silent sitting, do it too. Or maybe calming music with deep breathing and grounding. Whatever it feels like, it is your body which dictates how much of a help it needs. Listen to it and give it to it, It will thank you soon after!

Prayers, affirmations and mantras.

This can be used with your own preferences too. Prayers, I believe, are not limited to any religion or church. I believe that every time we surrender, ask for help and simply talk to the Highest Self, the Universe or any other animated energies of this world (use your own names, whichever resonate with you) – we pray. If praying makes you feel not comfortable, use affirmations and mantras when you need it. Talk to yourself in the most kind and compassionate way – imagine talking to a little kid in front of you!

Salt baths and showers.

After very draining day, when I truly feel depleted, I do salt bath or shower. For bath I use 2-4 cups of table or Himalayan salt. The Epsom salt is great for physical issues and muscle soreness, but not much energetical cleanse. When I take shower, I use sea salt soap (get some from truly a great organic source). I clean the palms of my hands and bottoms of my feet, as these are the entry and exit of so much energy, as well as the solar plexus area (between your breast and belly button) – this spot truly is a huge connector to all energetical things happening around us. This time could be also a great time to ground yourself by doing some breathing, maybe calming music or simply dancing. Whatever feels great for you!

Sage and Palo Santo cleanse.

I use these for clearing the space around me. It is a very ancient way of clearing the energy around us and within us. When I have time, these accompany other practices, to help cleanse what I cut cords with. As well as create the safe and energetically clean space for the rest of the time, for instance before calls with clients or creative work. It seriously can be done anywhere. You can purchase the sage or Palo Santo sprays and use those on-the-go. I love their smell and I use it every single time I have access too, which is.. daily!

The sage/Palo Santo I am using I get here: https://www.groveandgrotto.com/

Salt.

Yes, you read it right. Salt is the best element (crystal, rock) to use in any way to clear the space around and to protect yourself as you go with your day. Sprinkle the threshold of your home to prevent the negativity entering your home. Sprinkle corners of your rooms, your altar or put some under the meditation pillow. Put some into a little bag and place it in your car, purse or wallet. Use for baths, drinking water and washing hands. Yes, just like that!

Protection mojo bag.

Create your own mini bag to carry with you or have it in places where you get exposed to many different energies the most. Get some little black fabric (cotton or other natural preferable), and place there some salt crystals, smoky or clear quartz crystal, some bay and rosemary leaves, juniper berries, and sprinkle with rosemary or oregano essential oil. Use some black ribbon, wrap it up and there you have it, a great mini-protection tool for yourself!

The salt products, herbs, and crystals can be found: https://www.groveandgrotto.com/, http://www.herbsandarts.com/ & https://www.mountainroseherbs.com/

Essential oils and herbs.

I did plenty of studies to find out what herbs I could use to either burn in my caldron, or drink in my tea or simply place on my altar or in my mojo bag. I found that rosemary, bay leaves, juniper berries, cilantro, clove and oregano are the ones to use.

The same goes with essential oils (which I use either topically in coconut oil, as aromatherapy, or as spray dissolved with Witch Hazel tonic). The ones I am using are from doTerra (https://www.doterra.com/US/en/site/izabelachrobak1):

Birch, Cilantro, Clove, Rosemary, Vetiver, Myrrh, Frankincense, Lemongrass, Melaleuca;

and blends: Purify, Balance, and Past Tense.

I hope that this very compact and complete list of the tools for energetical cleansing and protection will serve you.

I hope that you will find something that resonated with you and can help you in the process of creating space which feels safe and at home, whenever you need it!

I am curious if you have some of your personal practices. I would love to hear about them!

Write it in your comment or DM on my Instagram @authenticwellbeing or in the private FB women’s space Authentic Wellbeing (join here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/AuthenticWellbeing/).

Disclaimer: I am receiving commission only on essential oils (once the provided website is used), all other stores I deeply and honestly suggest due to the high quality of service and products (I personally use them frequently).

I talked about this in the beYOUtiful Show episode #19 🙂

Love ❤️ ❤️ ❤️

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The Berry-Cacao Smoothie Bowl – dessert for your cravings!

This dessert-type of recipe is my to-go in my pre-menstruum (time leading up to the menstruation) and during menstruation, because this is the time when I crave CHOCOLATE.

To listen to my body, I started using unsweetened cacao powder and putting it into almost (except for meat, hahaha) anything.

If you follow me long enough on my Instagram or FB page, you already figured out that KAKAO & Cacao plays an important and beautiful role in my daily life.

But why KAKAO or Cacao?

What is it so special about it?

I wrote all benefits of this ingredient in the previous blog. Today, however, I want to emphasize its benefits for women.

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Cacao consists of zinc, magnesium and other elements soooo important for our bodies to prepare for bleeding. Our bodies are so clever and it knows that son we will be losing blood and with it a lot of elements necessary for the bodily functions. Those are magnesium, zinc, potassium, iron, selenium and many more.

That’s why you are craving CHOCOLATE – there is nothing ‘wrong’ with you. And if you do, you listen and provide what your body needs to diminish the potential causes of PMS, heavy bleeding or cramp pains.

In this recipe, we are also adding amazing antioxidants from berries (any berries), as well as great and powerful fats from avocado and coconut milk & oil, lots of potassium from banana and sugar regulating spice – cinnamon.

Berry-Cacao Smoothie Bowl recipe:

Serves 2

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Ingredients

2 cups frozen blueberries (or mixed berries)

2 medium bananas

1 avocados

¼ cup unsweetened organic cacao powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (or full-fat canned coconut milk)

½ cup water (or more if needed)

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Optional toppings

Sliced bananas

Hemp seeds

Chopped walnuts

Raw cacao nibs

Coconut flakes

Flaxseeds

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Method

Add all ingredients into the blender and blend until smooth. Add water as much as you wish to create either thicker and creamier version or more liquidy smoothie. Divide into two bowls and top as desired.

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I hope you enjoy your Berry-Cacao Smoothie Bowl!

I would love to hear from you how did you like this recipe?

Share with us your experiences and recipes involving either cacao or helping you to go through the pre-menstruum and bleeding phases in the Authentic Wellbeing secret & sacred group here.

Let’s create a tribe of KAKAO GODDESSES!

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Bye for now, beYOUtiful!

LoVE, 

Izabela



The Moment

Just writing this here on Monday, in February 2019, to remember.

The morning when I woke up without alarm clock, on my own terms, after getting an amazing nine hours of full night sleep. I remember feeling rejuvenated, fresh and ready to embark on my day.

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The morning tea, which I made with a tint of gratitude for my own herbs, hot water and electricity to be able to make that water boiling. The smell of the mint tea, just like in my mini herbal garden, made me feel relaxed and excited to sip on it.

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The morning routine the bathroom, where while changing I could express deep and loving gratitude for my body. Knowing where I came from and how hateful I was towards that creation, made me extremely thankful today and put smile on my face.

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The natural, organic and herbal salve for my face, which smelled beautifully and made me content with how I am choosing my cosmetics for my precious skin and body. That moment made my soul happy, too.

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The journaling and tracking my body’s physical, emotional, mental and spiritual qualities and seeing the pattern associated with my natural cycle. Just knowing that all nature, and me being part of it, lives in cyclical pattern, was very empowering.

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The morning breath, pause and movement, which brought me back to my body and to a present moment soothing my anxieties and stress. There would always be stress out there, but I knew that I could tap into trust and awareness at any time, that I have a choice and I could make it into a wonderful day.

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The content creating for my newsletter and my audience, where I truly could write with a full expression of myself and my voice, bringing into life powerful message that you all could resonate with and feel that are enough and worthy. This has been sparking my life since some time and I was beyond happy to do that.

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The music which could ease out any tense sensations, giving the opportunity for my hips to shake and move in any way they wanted. Engaging with it brought my body relief I craved since this morning, and other mornings, too.

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The workshop lead by life-changing, empowering and the most authentic woman I ever met, which created the space filled with energies of safety, openness and full expression of oneself. I couldn’t be more appreciative to be a part of such a circle.

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The meditation practice, when I could cry and smile, feel expansion and contraction, or sense stress and relief. During moments like that I know what trust, surrender and release is. During moments like that I know what self-love, compassion and gentleness is. Just being in that feeling when hurt is hurt and joy is joy, without overanalyzing, or putting labels of ‘good’ or ‘bad’. Priceless.

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The silence where I could hear my thoughts, my heart pounding, and my deepest and rooted true authentic self. The silence so quiet that it could trigger others, but me. It put a gentle arm around me comforting me, soothing and nurturing my heart, enlightening my soul and bringing joy to my craving Inner Child.

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I want to remember that the more love and time and energy and attention and generosity and kindness I give to myself, the more those things are available to give to others. ❤️

It is safe for me to be ME!

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HOMESICK

One day I got homesick.

I haven’t seen my family, which is back in Europe, for almost 6 years. Due to many reasons, personal, professional, financial and other.

Today I got seriously home sick. I missed my Mom. I couldn’t stop crying, tears were dropping uncontrollably. They were releasing so much sadness. The deep longing for reconnecting to the woman who carried me in her womb, who raised me and who feels what I feel, was overwhelming.

It came suddenly, unplanned.

Yet, it was totally planned. Nothing happens without a reason. The Universe has its ways to communicate!

I don’t have kids. I wanted at some point in my life. But due to hormonal problems, such as PCOS, I knew I will either have difficulties to get pregnant or never be able to have kids. After trying for over one and a half years with my ex-husband, I gave up. In order for me to not get depressed, I convinced my mind and heart that it is ok. That I am sick and I can always enjoy the children in my family, among my friends and around me. I even volunteered for children mentorship organizations to fulfill what was missing in my life.

Whenever someone asked me about kids, my answer was very fast and straightforward: I don’t want to have kids. I won’t be a good mother and I believe I am being a more responsible person by not having them rather than giving them a bad example and a bad family.

The emotions about having one were scary, fearful, even to the point of being disgusted.

I also felt that I love my space.  I like living luxury life. I like being by myself. Kids would just destroy my beautiful, well organized environment which I could live by myself according to myself.

Recently, the situation in my relationship forced me to discuss the potential pregnancy with my fiancée. I am not sure why did I even ask about what we will do if that happens. I quickly concluded that I am having an abortion in that case. There is no space for a kid in my life. No, no, no.

Yet, the other day I wasn’t able to purchase a pregnancy test in the store. For the first time in my life all I could feel was my heart saying that all of it is in God’s and the Universe’s hands.

I came back home and I started crying.

Cried and cried, not knowing why at first.

I missed my mom!

I realized that I didn’t want to have kids, ever in my life, because I didn’t want them to hurt me as I hurt my mom.

I didn’t want them to leave me behind and abandon me as I did to my mom.

Since I was little, I knew my mission was to protect my mom. Protect her from my abusive dad. I saw her too often on the floor bleeding from kicks and punches from my dad. All I could do to protect her then was to make sure my younger siblings were quiet so my dad wouldn’t punish my mom even more. I knew I was helping her.

I was protecting her from abusive words during the family events, where my dad could call her a whore in front of hundreds of people. Her tears were my tears, her dishonored person was mine to carry.

I was protecting her every single time I could. And if there was a moment I couldn’t it was because I wasn’t present.

Then I left to college. I left her!

I left her in the place where there was no love for her. I left her with a person I deeply hated. I left her alone and weak, sad and depressed, yet so strong that she allowed me to go. With a smile on her face, eyes full of hope, body language expressing deep love and pain at the same time, she sent me to the outside world. That way I could go there and get an education and be an independent woman and a kind person to even my enemies, serve others and always forgive, as she forgave my father a long time ago.

How could she possibly do that?

How?

Because she is the strongest woman on this planet I have ever known.

Today, knowing how I hurt her, I know I don’t want to feel that hurt myself. I don’t want my kid to abandon me.

I don’t want my kid to tell me one day that she doesn’t want to live anymore. Because I did that, too, to my mom on my birthday, when she called me at the exact same time I was born 37 years earlier. I told her that I want to die, and I should have never been born.

I can just feel the sharp pain in her heart. Yet, she didn’t even move. She didn’t panic. She didn’t cry. That wonderful woman said words I will never forget.

‘Your birth gave me hope and it always will. So today I am telling you that there is hope! Stay with me baby girl and we both will make it work!’

– my MOM

So today I know that in order to love, forgive and live with hope, kindness, compassion and unlimited strength in my heart and soul, I need to feel pain, experience hurt and tears and keep moving. Through pain there is healing. Through pain I can become the true and authentic, loving and beautiful woman my Mom always wanted me to be. Just like her! And always loving my enemies! Just like her!

Today I am grateful for what I am being given, the wonderful gift of life, the wonderful Mother and the opportunity to give life and be a mother myself as well. Whatever it is meant for me to give birth to!

I LOVE YOU MOM!  ❤️

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The apps for my physical, spiritual and mental health.

It is so weird for me to write this blog just in the middle of digital detox, with hugely limited time on social media. So even using my phone for more than calling or texting is limited as well.

Yet, I can see the power of some apps I have downloaded and I use, and which totally serve their purpose.

That’s why I decided to answer your questions and share with you 9 apps I am using for my mental, physical and spiritual health.

Physical health

MyFitnessPal

https://www.myfitnesspal.com/

I have used that app for over 4 years. Yes, it is amazing at tracking almost everything: food, nutrition, macros, calories, workouts, and your fitness progress. It has a huge database with foods from all over the world – believe me, I am Polish and I eat foods from all over Europe. It can scan also barcode of all foods you buy. It has an extremely easy way to type in your own recipe with giving you the exact breakdown of macros, calories and whatever you wish in the serving size you provide. It helped me in every way on my fitness path to the bodybuilding stage, to the professional racing and beyond. However, I would lie if I wouldn’t say that this type of tracking may be very addictive and obsessive. So please use your own discernment and use it as a tool, not as an indicator of your worth!

Clue

https://helloclue.com/

This is an app to track my menstrual cycle. I simply love it. You can use it to track what the app is suggesting, like emotionality, mental state, pains, temperature, cravings, fitness activity. You can also add many more options to track. It gives me a very clear picture where I am with my cycle, and the data are securely saved in their system so I can log in from any device I want. For those of us who are nerds, a beautiful thing about this app is that the Clue Team does a lot of research (Clue Research Innovation Program) and blogging about actual data and information related to menstrual cycles. By visiting their page, you can read so much more, ask questions and find the help you may need.

Kindara

https://www.kindara.com/

Kindara is the fertility awareness app, used primarily to monitor ovulation and fertile window. It is used as a natural fertility method. You can track as many data as you want, including the most important for its role: cervical discharge and body temperature. I use it mostly as a visual version of the Clue app, to see my body’s physical function. It is so easy to use, and so colorful 😊

Mental health

Spirit Junkie by Gabby Bernstein

https://gabbybernstein.com/shop/spirit-junkie-app/

I love this app. Very simple yet so mentally grounding and reminding me about taking care of the hygiene of my own thoughts. Every day, at 11:11am I get a beautiful mantra which brings me back to the present moment, allows me to take few breaths in, and be grateful for who I am and what I have at that moment. Definitely, a powerful tool to use for your mental self-care.  

Pocket Casts

https://www.pocketcasts.com/

That is my iTunes version for Android. I use it to collect all my podcasts I want to listen to. It allows you to download them to your phone to listen to in the off-line situation. As an Android person, I am very loyal to this app. It is easy, very clear and well organized. It is a paid app, but so worth the price.

Spotify

https://www.spotify.com/us/

Shake it, shake it! This is my ‘dance, move and fun’ app. Everyone knows it. It is an app to listen to all the music – worldwide. What I love about it is that you can create your own playlist and then share it with anyone you want. You can send it to your girlfriend so you both can shake that booty, or to your client as a tool for the transformation they are working on. Music is an amazing remedy and energy healer!

BTW, this is one of my favorite playlists:

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/2zG8pzvLSrYgY4lfvQdbdW

Spiritual health

Insight Timer

https://insighttimer.com/

I think, in my humble opinion, that this is the best meditation and relaxation app ever. It not only has guided meditations, but also relaxation music of any kind and talks on a wide range of topics in the spirituality field. It offers a variety of courses, tools to relax, ease anxiety or sleep better. The artists are amazing and from all over the world, so the app offers also exposure to different cultures. You can bookmark what you like, rate the experience and even submit questions directly to the artist. I use it for guided meditation or as simple as background music to my own practice or during work. I use it to do my Yoga Nidra routine and for my ceremonies and rituals. This app almost never closes on my phone. Another wonderful fact about it is that you meditate with thousands of other people at the same time and you can let them know about that. Wow, the world is truly getting smaller and smaller. How magical is that! Definitely, worth of your try.

1 Giant Mind

https://www.1giantmind.com/

I downloaded this meditation app to participate on 12-day course on learning how to meditate. After that the app offers another challenge – 30 days. I love the simple way of guiding me through the process. Even though I may be little more advanced, but wow, this 12-day course taught me so much. Well, we are learning all our lives, right? The website offers also podcast and…. the certification program to become a meditation teacher! How cool is that!

Bliss

https://bliss31.com/

This app is a very cool tool for those of you who don’t journal via the classic way, pen-to-paper, but rather want something digital. I used it for a while and I actually adopted a few ideas from the app and transferred them to my written journal. I personally believe that there is real magic, intrapersonal communication, and processing while writing thoughts and reflections on the paper. And I am a true ambassador of that way of journaling. However, I know that not everyone may be able to either carry their journal with them or spend extra time writing. This app is very beautiful, and have many options to bring your attention to the present moment and reflect. Go ahead and try it! You won’t regret!

Hey, that would be it!

I am so curious which apps are you using for your physical, mental and spiritual health? 
Or which one did you download after reading this blog?

I’d love to hear from you, let me know either below in the comment or on my social media here:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/iskra22

FB Sacred beYOUtiful group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/beYOUtifulbyIzabela/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/beyoutiful_spartanlady/

2018: The year of pure transformation and life-changing lessons.

I was about to start this blog with a very plain title “The teachings of 2018”.

However, I thought that I’ll start with these life-changing conclusions first and elaborate on them next:

1. Slowing down is not a sign of weakness, but a sign of huge personal responsibility and strength.

2. Choosing differently every day is the most powerful tool ever.

3. Love is for free – you don’t need to do anything for it, you don’t need to work for it either!

Footnotes:

1. Boundaries are crucial.

2. Know your fears even the most shameful ones.

3. There is light in a tunnel, but you need to ask for help first and keep walking.

Conclusion:

I am ME, just the way I am and I will never be able to make everyone happy around me. Even if tried, I could end up making myself miserable before others and they are still not going to be happy.

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The biggest awakening came in my relationship, where I am still learning what unconditional love is. I dreamt about it since I was a little girl, yet never had any clue that one day I will be purely afraid of it. The fact that someone can love me for just who I am, without me needing to work for it, do things in return, become someone else, or fake it till I make it – is mind-blowing.

Love is for free. FREE.

And it comes from every angle of the life – no need to chase it, no need to be approved for it, no need to look for. No need to be different, too!  

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I learned how to say NO, set healthy boundaries and secure my own space for my own self-care and sanity. All done in the most loving way possible. Was everyone ok with that? NO, of course not. And that was totally fine with me.  

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I also learned that the only thing I am truly capable of doing is to make myself happy without expecting others to do it for me. It is just not fair to do so.

I started this year with fighting with extreme bulimia and depression. I wanted to be well. I knew that it’s out of my integrity to coach others battling with such disorders yet being affected myself so deeply. I needed to see the light in the tunnel… which I couldn’t for a long time. The help could come only when I asked for.

I understood that I have a free will, and nobody is going to cross that border unless I permit them to do so. This when “I need help” came out of my mouth and when it was delivered. Was is fast? Not at all. I learned in my life that things which are meaningful need real and affectionate work, with love, compassion, and acceptance. And all will happen at its own pace!

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This brings me to December this year when I decided to step back, slow down and rethink a lot of things in my life, especially my business, job, mission and life purpose. It was hard at first because I, as many of you, was wired to hustle, advertise, promote, chase and work hard for every single penny and client.

It was one of the most wonderful lessons to learn that slowing down is actually an act of strength and integrity.

I’ve never put something on social media that wasn’t sincere. If I’m having a bad day, I don’t say much. Because privacy is part of authentic wellness. And because I’m committed to offering hope- and love-bringing content. I go through the issue, I learn from it, I bring out the lessons from it and then I share it. I am a guide and teacher.

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Last, but not the least, is that I recognized the deepest fears of mine. Even writing them here makes me feel still ashamed and little uneasy. But I know how sharing them may help me and some of you who can resonate.

I am afraid of being happy, loved and successful.

Yes, I am. I didn’t realize until the end of this year how manipulation, procrastination and self-pity are huge in my life. I use them to protect myself in the most ‘artificial’ way. My ego feels safe when it’s in control. Experiencing pure love, happiness and success wasn’t in my cards in the past. When I see the huge opportunity for them in any form, my mind panics and retract. It feels afraid! And it does anything to not feel that way!

.

Today I know that in 2019 my major goal will be to step out of that comfort zone and experience what’s meant for me!

That means – self-trust is the theme for next year!

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So, cheers to the 2019!!!

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  • What is your theme for 2019?
  • What are your lessons from 2018?
  • What are your goals for 2019?
















I am HERE. I am NOW. I am
ME. ❤



Where is this freaking self-love coming from?

How many times did you ask yourself that question?

I did at least a million times.

I saw all these beautiful posts, mantras, affirmations, illustrations, quotes, poems, books and posters, and all I did was nodding my head and repeating after them – ‘oh yes, yes, I know… yes, I love myself, yes, I care about myself’ – over and over again.

Oh gosh, how they didn’t resonate with me.

Oh gosh, how they didn’t sound familiar to me at all.

The more I immersed myself into it, the more frustrated I was getting.

What is all about that self-love?

How one can freaking actually love themselves?

It simply didn’t click at all.

I felt at times, like either my mind didn’t get it, or I did something wrong, or simply – self-love doesn’t exist. It was all blurry-type of marketing fame and that was it all.

I was actually right, at least with the first part of my statement. My mind didn’t get it because self-love is not mind’s job. Period!

Honestly, anytime my mind started spinning its chatter, I seriously needed to seat with it and make sure it shuts up so I could do my thing.

I was also right with the second part of my statement, that I was doing something wrong.

I was actually doing everything upside down, and all over again. I got myself in such a bundle of wires and knots that there was no way to see it through. I got to that point that I needed to scream loud to ask for help. I was doing all of it wrong, including self-help tools I intenden to use.

Self-love is the easiest thing ever if we let it be!!!

Self-love, as the name indicates, comes from within. WITHIN!

Read that again. From inside of you!

It doesn’t come from artificial affirmations which someonetold us to use, and you have no clue even how to embody them.

Self-love doesn’t come from a million self-care practices, amazing spa weekends and red roses.

Self-love doesn’t come from being needy and expecting others to make you happy. How unfair is that!

So where is it coming from, huh?

Here is my answer:

I was looking for self-love in money and a great job. And it didn’t show up. I was looking for it in validation, cuddles and external love from boyfriends and it didn’t show up either. I was looking for it even in the healthy lifestyle industry, by being fit, eating well, looking sexy, desired and admirable…. Well, it didn’t show up in there as well.

The more I was ‘looking’ for, the more I was discovering that it may actually not exists.

The beautiful self-love, that one I truly desired, and wanted to be a part of my life, was nowhere to be seen.

How did I want the self-love to show up in my life?

  • I wanted to be depression-free so I could have life purpose to get up every day.
  • I wanted to be suicidal-thoughts-free so I could appreciate the gift of life.
  • I wanted to be bulimia-free so I could be grateful for the body which did so much for me every day.
  • I wanted to be self-hatred-free so I could freaking finally love myself.

Purely. Unconditionally. Confidently. Authentically. Joyfully.

It came to me.

It came in a form I would have never expected.

Oh, how sad and mad, frustrated and angry, disappointed and upset I was.

And at the same time, how relieved I felt. How happy, truly, purely, authentically and joyfully happy!

It came in the form of the love from WITHIN.

❤ The moment when I cried feeling sadness, but I sat with it to understand why I was sad.

❤ The moment when I was alone with myself and stayed there to experience who I was.

❤ The moment when I joyfully danced and jumped in the park knowing that this made my heart smile.

❤ The moment when saying ‘NO’ was a blissful experience.

❤ The moment when I saw my depression as a cry of my soul to be loved and appreciated.

❤ The moment when the most important relationship I wanted to nurture was with myself first.

❤ The moment when my childhood abuse memories were coming back and I thanked them for showing up.

❤ The moment when I rebuild the connection with my Inner Child and saw her pain caused by me.

❤ The moment when looking at my naked body wasn’t filled with willingness to self-violate anymore.

❤ The moment when I was literally apologizing for every part of my body for abusing it for so long.

❤ The moment when I got my first period after over 15 years of faking it and getting rid of.

❤ The moment when I enjoyed being braless because I finally loved my femininity.

❤ The moment when I became a friend with my pain, weakness and mistakes – being grateful for their teachings.

❤ The moment when I literally could touch, smell and even taste my own blood knowing that this is freaking me.

And that will be me. Until I die.

Did I want to treat myself and my Inner Child in the abusive way as I was abused in my past?

Did I want to waste my body, my soul and heart because I didn’t see it as it ‘should be’?

No. Not anymore.

I understood.

That was me. That is me. Whole. Unique. Myself. With my ebbs and flows. With my vulnerabilities and superpowers. Enough. Loved. Joyful.

Me. My body, my cycle, my blood, my creative being!

Me. Naked. Dancing. Braless. Beautiful. Blissful. Sad and happy.

All of it and even more. ME.

This is a pure love I was longing for all my life!

It came to me!

And I was ready for her!

I want to express here the deepest gratitude that most of it wouldn’t be obtained without the help of amazing coaches and mentors I had on the path to rediscovering myself and ‘finding’that love which was truly always here, within. With some of them, I worked in person, being a part of their programs and tribes, and some of them impacted me very powerfully via their books, materials, podcasts and self-expression viadifferent platforms. 
Zlata Sushchik, Melinda Collins, Samantha Skelly, ElizabethDiAlto, Claire Baker, Danielle LaPorte, Gabby Bernstein, Red School with Alexandra Pope & Sjanie Hugo Wurlitzer as the founders, Lisa Lister, and many more I haven’t listed, yet being so empowering on the journey to my own femininity.

You got this beYOUtiful! ❤

Let’s talk about personal responsibility.

The definition of ‘responsibility’ by Merriam-Webster Dictionary is the quality or state of being responsible and having moral, legal, or mental accountability.

When it comes to the responsibility of others and other things in our lives, we actually know the best how to do that.

However, when it comes to personal responsibility, there is an uncomfortable silence in the crowd. It’s either because people may not know what is that exactly, or – what I found very interesting – they don’t want to take that type of responsibility on.

And this is where the personal responsibility asks for the attention!

So, let’s start from the beginning. What is that personal responsibility, how can you be fully responsible for yourself and how is this going to impact your life?

What is the personal responsibility?

As the name states already, it the responsibility you take for yourself, your attitude, actions, reactions, words and anything you do towards others and yourself.

It is also the responsibility for your emotionality, life experiences, choices, energies, communications, language, boundaries, and self-work.

Sounds like a lot of responsibilities. Right?

And that makes you a loving, kind, compassionate and caring human being.

How can you be fully responsible for yourself and your life?

Being responsible fully for yourself is a daily practice of self-awareness and self-compassion. It requires you to be mindful of your actions, behaviors or emotions in a way that you take full responsibility for anything you commit to do or follow, and anything that comes out of it.

As my mentor, Elizabeth DiAlto, says, “check yourself before you wreck yourself”.

Pay attention to what’s coming up for you personally as you interact with others. Stop, breath in and revisit it before you destroy the party and everyone’s moods including your own.

Don’t project your emotions and energies onto others before you check-in with yourself first. It’s always best to ask rather than assume or read into what people are saying or doing.

If something triggers you, take a moment (or many moments) to be with your own emotions before responding. Being charged usually doesn’t serve good communication.

Be committed to your choices. Be fully aware that those were your own choices and nobody forced them onto you.

As I always say, “it is nobody’s business to make you happy’. Be aware of what makes you happy and what doesn’t and take responsible actions to feel what you want to feel.

Don’t blame the external world for the chaos and storms in your internal world. Rather give yourself space and time to see what are your emotions trying to tell you and how could you work on it with self. Most of the chaos in the outside world we create by not managing our internal chaos.

Create healthy boundaries where you can grow, blossom, nurture yourself and be true and authentic, so that others can benefit from it as well. Boundaries are important for healthy relationships with others and yourself.

How is this going to impact your life?

Oh, big times!!!!

First, the feeling of self-awareness of your needs wants and triggers creates an amazing tool for self-work.

Second, seeing that you are the creator of your life, day by day, gives you back the power you have within.

Third, knowing that your choices, actions, and behaviors impact you the same as others allow you to take care of them with love and compassion.

Fourth, you become the person you truly wanted to be: aware, calm, responsible, compassionate, loving, caring, aligned, light and happy!

PROMPT: How do you take a personal responsibility in your life now?

[The teachings in this blog come from my book “The True Identity” – publishing early 2019]

UNIVERSE IS A FUNKY PLACE

 

“Everything that happens in your life is the best possible thing that can happen to you”

– Chris Prentiss

 

  • Every single moment of your life is the moment YOU have a choice to make.

  • Every single moment of your life is the moment YOU desire and it’s given to you.

 

The question is, how do you want to receive it?

 

I am going to show you the THREE ways how to receive whatever is meant for you!

 

GRATITUDE

— If friends you invited for a dinner won’t say thank you, would you invite them again? —

Say thank you. Give thank you.

 

* First and foremost, appreciate Yourself. Be grateful for the life you live, for the world around you, for the loved ones, for the money and the house you have. However, be even more grateful for feelings and emotions. Be mindful of your inner voice and instincts.

* Appreciate your loved ones. Be amazed at small things such a smile, a gesture, and a hug. Be aware of the beauty around you in the other people’s eyes, in your spouse’s body language, in your kid’s smile.

* Appreciate your friends and co-workers. They are in your life for a reason, to create that beautiful life story of yours. Be mindful of what your life might have been without them.

* Appreciate the stranger. Discover the magic behind the THANK YOU expressed towards the person you just passed on the way to work or in the store. Be amazed by how that simple courtesy can impact that person and you in a positive way.

* Appreciate the Universe/God/Higher Power/Divine. Would you be who you are without all the moments and experiences in your life? Be understanding that expressing appreciation for what you already have will just give you more of it.

* Say and give THANK YOU to your life: moments, events, people, items and whatever else you are grateful for WITHOUT COMPARISONS TO OTHERS. That creates the powerful mindset you want to walk into your day with.

 

HOW TO DO THAT?

** write every morning and evening what are you grateful for – be honest and feel it!

** ask yourself why are you grateful for that – be honest!

** ask yourself what would you do to make someone else happy – be honest!

** ask yourself how could you contribute to tomorrow’s day to make it worthy – be honest!

** say THANK YOU to stranger, co-worker, friend, or loved one today!

** say THANK YOU to someone who you didn’t talk to for more than 6 months!

 

RESULTS:

As your day goes, by appreciating yourself, you will feel lighter, happier and encouraged to take upon any challenge you may face during a day.

As your day goes, by spreading the appreciation around you, you will experience more love, smiles, kindness, and help from other people.

 

 

LOVE

Self-love is different than self-care.

Sure, get yourself a nice haircut, manicure or buy yourself flowers. It makes your physical body feel loved.

However, practice self-love by making your soul and heart feel loved, too.

 

* Light the candle in a place where there are nothing and nobody except for yourself. Feel the silence. Feel your body. Feel your anxieties. Feel your happiness. Feel your inner voice.

* Just be, just listen.

* Is this moment making you feel uncomfortable? If yes, that’s great. Moments like that bring a lot of teachings.

* Your inner voice is sending you an important message. Is it because you feel pain, or maybe are miserable at work, or maybe it is the lack of love in your life, including from yourself? Whatever it is, be in that feeling.

* Marinate yourself in that feeling. Say them out loud, write them down, read them again.

* Cry if you feel like.

* Smile if you want.

* Dance if you desire so.

 

There are not bad or good emotions. They all mean something to us. They give us a cue of what is happening in our life, in our deepest soul.

Escaping from the emotions and signs your body is showing you will just extend the pain you are living in.

 

HOW TO DO THAT?

** mediate in the morning before you even grab the phone

** wake up earlier than others so you have a quiet moment for your inner voice to listen

** give yourself few minutes during the day to breath, to space out, to daydream, to escape from everything around you

** journal all your emotions, don’t feel ashamed or judged – it is you who you want to be comfortable with at first

** write the letter to yourself from the perspective of the inner women and inner you – be kind, loving, non-judgmental and critic-free

** be aware of all good things around you.

 

RESULTS:

The more you take care of yourself, the more love you are able to spread.

The more you love yourself, the more compassion is around you.

The more you respect yourself, the more kindness will be in your presence.

 

 

INTENTION

What are you choosing to focus on? How is that serving or hindering you?

Do you visualize your future as if it’s happening now?

Do you see yourself as a successful, happy, balanced and empowered woman?

 

The intentions are your thoughts, desires and inner voice towards the vision you place ourselves in! The way you see yourself walking, feeling, reacting, living and being in the future, that’s the way you will become.

 

* Is it that you want to be anxiety-free? – imagine that lightness!

* Is it that you want to be debt-free? – picture that financial freedom!

* Is it that you want to be loved? – feel that you are loved!

* Is it that you want to be respected? – act that way!

* Is it that you want to be successful? – live like a successful person!

* Is it that you want to be a great boss? – be a great person now!

 

Negative intentions will keep you limited, positive ones will move you forward.

 

HOW TO DO THAT?

** write a letter to yourself NOW from yourself THEN and read it every day!

** practice affirmations every single day by using I AM statement.

** believe in yourself truly!

** see in you the person you want to become!

** feel how it is going to be when you are that person you want to become.

** appreciate the wonderful person you are NOW!

 

RESULTS:

Manifest and create an image of where you want to be are your major vision.

You can see it, feel it, and be there! All your existence will work together with higher powers to get you there!

Your mind will focus on it by creating the opportunities.

Your soul will feel aligned and peaceful.

The Universe is sending any cues your way so you could become who you so deeply desire to be!

 

Be mindful of what you are asking for beYOUtiful😊

 

PROMPT: What resonated with you the most?

 
Check out that video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihGkwARehAQ&t=377s

 

[The teachings in this blog come from my book “The True Identity” – publishing early 2019]