How to Thrive When Things Suck

Last year, the jolly month of December turned into a difficult winter of tragedy and loss. I’m reminded of that time now because another friend lost his life, and I’m noticing the memories and pain flooding my heart again. Years ago, when faced with these painful emotions, I would numb out through prescription medication, drinking, or total avoidance through TV and other distractions. I kept my emotions inside. As you can guess, those methods didn’t help me at all and only made my pain worse. Here’s why.

Emotions are meant to move. The root of the word is from the French Emouvoir, to move.  Not only does it take TONS of energy to keep your emotions hidden inside, but denying them have harmful effects on your body and spirit (such as depression, insomnia, anxiety, or addictions). Then when you least expect it, those suppressed emotions get triggered and you find yourself acting out in ways that don’t align with your highest good. Trust me, I’ve been there.

Here are 3 ways to deal with your pain in healthy and responsible ways:

1. Welcome your pain.  As human beings we all have emotions and it’s important to give them space, even when your emotions are painful. This guided “Welcoming Meditation”  is an opportunity to welcome what is. Find a sacred space, and make a commitment to focus in on your uncomfortable emotion for 5-20 minutes. Some uncomfortable emotions might be fear, sadness, jealousy, anger, anxiety, overwhelm, frustration, or grief etc.

  • The first step of this meditation is feeling your emotion instead of pushing it away. Feeling the sensations of that emotion in your body.
  • The second step is welcoming it and accepting it by saying in your mind’s eye, “welcome <insert emotion>.” Surround your emotion with love and compassion.
  • Go back and forth between steps one and two as long as it takes until the overwhelming quality of that feeling subsides.
  • The third step is surrender, saying in your mind’s eye, “I let go of control. I let go of the desire to change.”
  • The final step is letting go. If you can’t let it go, go through this whole meditation again. When you’re ready, say in your mind’s eye “I let go of <emotion>,” and watch it float away.

2. Turn your pain into art. Now that you have faced and felt your pain, you can free your pain through creativity. Choose any medium you desire. Watercolor, acrylics, sketching, etc.  One method that works wonders for me and my clients is collaging. This is where you give your emotion a voice, expression, and color. For every pain or uncomfortable emotion, find an image associated with it, and cut and glue each image, emotion by emotion onto a piece of paper. The result is two-fold: you get a beautiful art piece, and you get to witness your pain in a contained art-form outside yourself. National Geographic is a great magazine to use.

3. Emotional Release. This is probably the most important step: letting your emotions move. Give yourself permission to release your emotions through crying, (safely) punching your pillows, or even screaming into a pillow. If you feel resistant to doing this, I get it. This probably sounds ridiculous. But the truth is, the greater the resistance, the greater the wound.  Put on a song that evokes your emotion at hand, and give yourself the space to let go. Feel your body and it’s natural impulse, and then let it out. Stay fully present during this process; before, during and after. It’s called emotional release for a reason- you’ll feel a great amount of relief after just 90 seconds of crying, punching, or screaming. By moving your emotions, you free up your energy and create new space inside. 

My next retreat, Celebration of Woman, is the safest space to explore your emotions as a woman. It’s here that you will fall in love with yourself by releasing everything that holds you back from being happy and at peace. It was there that I found my freedom and in turn, my purpose as a women’s empowerment coach. It’s February 26th – March 1st in San Luis Obispo, California. To learn more about this workshop, I’m happy to have a free 30 minute consultation with you. To schedule your free call, sign up here.

It takes courage to feel your emotions, and I acknowledge you for exploring new ways to thrive, even when things suck.
Love,
Chrissy

The Practice of Gratitude

d5a59bfbb55ba6bd7cc31ff75be52f39Here in the States, the month of November always reminds me to be grateful. 

Experiencing gratitude is one of the most effective ways of getting in touch with your soul. When you’re in touch with your soul you eavesdrop on the wisdom of the universe. Gratitude is a super power. Gratitude is a major pillar of my coaching practice because it connects us to the present moment and pushes fear out of the way.  You can’t have fear and gratitude at the same time. When we practice gratitude, we have no choice but to embrace the wisdom of uncertainty.

Last week I led a workshop on Gratitude, and I included these questions in a guided meditation. I invite you to find some quiet time for yourself to explore these questions so you can fully experience all you have to be grateful for.

1. What relationships do you have that you cherish? Do you have an animal that you shower with affection? Is there a relationship that fills you? Let those relationships float into your awareness, and with your loving heart, I invite you to thank them energetically.

2. Who are your champions, defenders, and supporters? Who are your teammates in life? Who is out there rooting for you? With your gentle heart, send those teammates energetic love and gratitude now..

3. Notice how the universe has tested you lately.  What challenges are you facing? With grateful awareness, what are the gifts of these challenges? What lessons have you learned?

4. What special gifts do you offer the world? Your community? Your family? Notice the lives you’ve touched just by being you. What gifts are you thankful for in yourself?

I am deeply thankful for you. Because of women like you, I get to practice my purpose DAILY. Your heart is the reason I get up in the morning. 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING! If you don’t celebrate this holiday, I invite you to celebrate YOURSELF and the many contributions you bring to the world.

May you and all beings be happy,

Chrissy

The Juiciest Apples Go Through the Harshest Winters

This weekend I staffed and helped facilitate a retreat for men. Yes, you heard it, men. Sure I’m a women’s empowerment coach and my practice primarily focuses on women, but I firmly believe that women’s healing cannot happen without the help of present, healed, and loving men. This Noble Man workshop is a three-and-a-half-day intensive for men who wish to heal their issues with women. It is a profound process of receiving support and honoring from experienced women holding an unconditional space of acceptance and love. Healing isn’t a one-way street. For transformation to stick we need to pay it forward and contribute, and that’s why 20 women stepped up this weekend to support the healing of MAN.

Our Celebration of Being workshops invite the WHOLE human experience. All is welcome. Seriously. This weekend I witnessed men bring it all. Their pain, their anger, their wounds, and their longing. The other side of their wounds and defenses were masculine power, strength, and mighty love. It was a privilege for me as a woman to witness the other side of the human race with fresh eyes.

I learned so much about men and women this weekend, and I want to share an analogy with you that might help you better understand the human condition.

Human beings are like chocolate chip cookies. Think about the ingredients. There are the sweet ingredients like sugar and chocolate chips, but you also need salt, flour, and baking soda. Those ingredients on their own are fowl to taste, but without them, the chocolate chip cookie isn’t complete. The eggs are a mess, but necessary to keep the dough together. As human beings, we need all of our ingredients to be whole. We need our happiness of course, but we also need our sadness, our anger, our envy, our pain, and our fear. We need balance, or we’ll fall apart!

When we suppress our feelings, we are also suppressing their polar opposite.  When we are REAL with our emotions, we reveal our potential. Intimately knowing your fear allows you to unleash your true depth of courage. Exposing any hatred in your heart will open up your unconditional capacity to love. If you deny your ugliness, you lesson your beauty. If you deny your greed, you reduce your generosity.

Digging into your darkness will EXPLODE your light. That’s what the men taught me this weekend.

Did you know that the juiciest apples go through the harshest winters? If you are having a tough time right now, I invite you to be present with your experience and feel it fully because your radiant potential is around the corner. I have personally gone through some pretty cruel winters, and my life is full of delight now because I faced those challenges head on. Do I still feel pain, sorrow, anger, and isolation? You betcha! But I allow it. I don’t resist it. The other side of winter is the Spring, the time of rebirth, renewal, and sunshine. Our joy needs our sadness as much as the sun needs the moon. Honor your total human experience.

Back to the cookie analogy.

Cookies can’t bake without incredibly harsh heat, and they can’t form into solid cookies without sitting in stillness at room temperature. Like cookies, we need time to integrate. Our transformation takes time! When we’re impatient and try to eat the cookie straight out of the oven, not only do we burn our mouths, but the cookie falls apart. We need to be patient with ourselves so we can stay solid, healthy, and connected.  We need to sit in stillness by breathing and allowing. There is NO rush.

Embrace your bitterness. Embrace your loneliness. Embrace your struggle. Be where you are with compassion.  When you shine light on your darkness, your shadows no longer hide. It’s like lighting a candle in a dark room.  Let your pain lead you out of the darkness and into your purpose.

One more nugget I’d love to share with you. If you want present and loving men in your life, YOU have to be loving and present with yourself. When women show up inside their birthright of unconditional love, men are called forth to be their authentic, powerful selves.  When you shine your light, the light in others will reach for yours.

Your light weeds out those who are not ready to see it.  Whether you are attracted to men or women, your counterpart will show up when they see the real you. You don’t have to search; you don’t even have to try. All you have to do is fill your reservoir with love, compassion, and purpose, and shine on.

The world is waiting for you to show up on this planet with undefended love and passion. I want to share my formula with you so your light can finally be seen by those who need it the most. If you’re ready to transform your pain into purpose by giving radical self-love a shot,  let’s have a FREE 30 minute Discovery Session. I’m waiting for you, sister.

Shine on,
Chrissy

30 Days of Mindfulness Challenge

Hey gorgeous, I have exciting news!

CBS - web-4-1Do you want to experience mental, emotional, and physical peace DAILY?

Do you want to learn different ways to meditate and create a sustainable meditation practice? 

Do you want to find gratitude in all things and discover the secret to true happiness?

An awesome company in San Francisco has hired me to create a 30 Days of Mindfulness Challenge! I’ve designed a 30 day practice for you to cultivate different activities into your life to make you happier. You’ll find videos, guided meditations and journaling prompts to bring more awareness into your life all accessed through an app on your phone!

 

 

 

To participate in the challenge (for FREE) click here: https://www.lift.do/plans/348667-30-days-to-mindfulness

If you want one-on-one support from me throughout the challenge for just $14.99 per week, click here: 

https://www.lift.do/getcoached/234-chrissy-brady-smith?plan_id=348667

I have combined my 6 years of transformational training in meditation, life coaching, and other healing modalities for you to get a taste of the coaching I offer at a ridiculously affordable price! There are already 564 people participating in the challenge and it won’t be the same without you there!  

Here’s what you can expect: 

Week 1 is all about Meditation. I recorded a sampler of 7 different guided meditions for you to try which will quiet your mind, soothe your emotions, and relax your body.

Week 2 is on self-awareness and gratitude. This is where you will write in your journal and activate the creative side of your brain by finding gratitude in all things, even the challenges.

Week 3 is about self-care and self-love. Mindfulness won’t stick if you don’t take care of yourself. This is a profound week for you to exquisitely love yourself, all of yourself.

Week 4 is all about giving and receiving. This is a beautiful week to take full responsibility for the energy you give and receive in this world.  This week has the capacity to change your life forever.

Bonus:  Mastering your fear. My favorite subject. These final two challenges will support you in relating to your fear as your power.

Can’t wait to see you there!

All my love,
Chrissy

The power of “I can”

Hi Gorgeous!

Do you ever notice yourself saying, “I can’t”? Maybe in your mind or even aloud?

I get it. These words used to rule my thinking: 

“I can’t do that yoga pose.”

“I can’t get over him.”

“I can’t make money.”

“I can’t be a successful coach.”

Then I woke up. I was tired of being broke, miserable, and purposeless. I got into action, learned everything I could about manifestation, and changed my mindset and way of thinking. I transformed my limited vocabulary into words of empowerment. When my thoughts changed- my world changed, and I want this for you.

Here are some personal examples of what can happen when you shift your thinking and speaking into more conscious and positive language. 

IMG_1757Two weekends ago my thought, “I can’t do a headstand,” transformed into “I can do a headstand!” I decided in my mind that I could do a headstand, tried it for the first time,  and I did it- effortlessly!  My past negative thinking didn’t give my body close to enough credit. I didn’t stop there, and figured if I could do a headstand, why not try another inversion? Well, I succeeded in a new pose, side-crow this past week, and can’t get enough of it. It started with “I can,” and transformed into “I am.”

“I can’t be a successful coach.” That was a big one and clouded my new business deeply. Guess what?! That way of thinking made me broke. I was living in fear, afraid to put myself out there. The universe is always listening. Our words and thoughts matter. The life you lead is synonymous with the words you think. If your thoughts or words have negative energy, you will attract that same negativity in your life. Your conversation MATTERS!

By bringing my awareness to this thought, “I can’t be a successful coach,” I got real with myself. How the h@$* could I be a successful coach with that belief tainting my potential? I decided to take inspired action to support me in becoming a success.  I read manifestation books to raise my vibration, and I made the biggest investment in myself to date by registering for a 12 month Coaching program to up-level my business and mindset. I trained my mind into thinking “I can” and “I am.” What has opened up for me in my business with this mindset shift?

My actions aligned with my thinking, and my positive thoughts turned into positive things. I published this new website!  Getting visible was my wink to the universe saying, “I am a successful coach.”

This was my Yes to my calling, and inside that vibration, a coaching company in downtown San Francisco found me and asked me to lead and create a 30 Days of Mindfulness App. My past negative thinking would have told me, “Nope, you can’t do that… that sounds like too much work.” Instead I was a total YES! I created 30 days of daily mindfulness practices for men and women to incorporate in their everyday lives and recorded 10 videos and 7 guided meditations as a result.  My work is now being shared with thousands of people. This all started with “I can.”
Screen Shot 2014-10-30 at 2.06.19 PMMy new and empowered thinking created this possibility!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ii4An-NMsYg

The 30 Days of Mindfulness Challenge launches on Monday and I will keep you posted with all of the details so you can incorporate different qualities of awareness into your life so you can experience mental and emotional freedom and peace on a daily basis.

**A teaser from the challenge that I invite you to consider!**

During the day, take note of the conversations you have, both aloud and inside your mind. Notice the nature of your words; your complaints, your grievances, your gossip, your stories… Heck, even check out the Facebook updates you post! The life you lead is synonymous with the words you speak or think into the world. If your conversations contain negative energy, you will attract negativity. If your conversations are positive, open, and compassionate, you will attract these qualities into your life. How do your thoughts and conversations impact your life? What are you willing to shift to live the life you love?

 

All my love,

Chrissy

My Story

73246_10100168359498023_2512660_nI had an “ah-ha!” moment this afternoon while walking home from Yoga. The realization sounded something like this: “I love my life.”  I now go to yoga at any time of day that I desire, I’m lit up and inspired by my work, I get plenty of sleep, I have an incredible boyfriend, and I have the time to nourish my body with self-care and self-love. The truth is, my life is radically different than it used to be. I used to dread waking up in the morning because I was painfully busy, overworked, and living without purpose. I feel called to share a glimpse of my story with you, and hope it can inspire you to welcome radical change into your life as well.

My coaching journey began as a teacher, where I taught in elementary and university level classrooms across Northern California and East Africa. My mission was to create the safest space possible for my students to discover their own unique gifts and heal any insecurities holding them back from stepping into their power and expressing their truth.

Unfortunately, my light began to burn out in this profession; I felt overworked and underpaid. After a period of soul reckoning and transformation,  I realized being a school teacher no longer aligned with my purpose to support others in healing and empowerment. I also realized that my relationship of 4 years no longer aligned with our highest good. I took two huge risks just over a year and a half ago,  and the results were two break ups. I broke up with my teaching profession and broke up with my boyfriend.  I entered a new phase of transition, grief, and letting go.  As hard as this time was,  I’m clear that closing these doors created new beginnings for me as a woman and leader. New Beginnings are what I stand for as a women’s empowerment coach, and I believe every waking moment is a chance to turn our lives around for the better.

During my “soul reckoning”  I surrounded myself with communities and spaces that encouraged me to honor my intuitive wisdom. From women’s circles, to romance coaching, to workshops and seminars- I learned how to open myself to the power of manifestation through meditation and prayer. I now believe anything is possible, and it starts with something as simple as a positive thought. I visualized myself as a women’s empowerment coach and trusted the whispers that were steering me out of the teaching profession. I visualized calling in my soul mate and got crystal clear on the qualities I was looking for in a partner. I refused to settle for anything less than extraordinary. In just one year, I manifested each of these thoughts into realities, and today I’m living out my purpose as a transformational coach and blessed to be in the relationship of my dreams.

I said NO to what no longer served me and YES to myself. Saying yes to my soul’s mission gave me permission to listen to my deepest wisdom as a woman, the wisdom of my true self. My purpose found me because I was open and available to receiving guidance and support.  It is now my greatest honor to support other women inside their own soul reckonings, where ends are new beginnings and progress is part of the struggle.

Who I became in the process of ending my teaching career and relationship is something I wouldn’t give up for the world. As Cynthia Occelli says:

“For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would like like complete destruction.”

For you to achieve YOUR greatest expression, I invite you to welcome change and come undone, even if it’s painful and looks like utter destruction to someone looking in.

If you are ready for your own new beginning, let’s have a FREE 30 minute Discovery Session where we can give your intuition a voice and map out the life of your dreams. To set this up, email my team at info@chrissybradysmith.com, SUBJECT: Discovery Session.

To your new beginning,
Chrissy

Feminine Freedom

Celebration of Woman

Photo: Vaschelle André

 

I had the most amazing weekend co-facilitating the workshop, Celebration of Woman! I’m still riding the high of these courageous women coming home to TRUE SELF-EMPOWERMENT. I did this workshop as a participant 2.5 years ago, and it’s the reason I became a women’s empowerment coach. This past weekend, each woman in her own way moved through fears and pains to open her heart to a new world of FREEDOM. 
The freedom to be seen.
The freedom to speak up.
The freedom to love her body as a temple.
The freedom to dance.
The freedom to sit in stillness.
The freedom to be happy.
The freedom to be real.
The freedom to love.
The freedom to forgive.

The freedom to believe in something bigger than herself. 
Watch out world, these women own their worth and will settle for nothing less than extraordinary living filled with self-love and self-acceptance!I feel moved to share this with you because I trust in my gut that all women long for these basic freedoms. Women from all walks of life attended this workshop, and I believe that you  deserve this work as well. Are you longing to be seen and heard inside a safe and loving space to explore old stories and pains? Do you want to love your body? Do you want to love yourself, and I mean..all of yourself? Because it’s possible. This is a weekend dedicated to shining light on the parts of yourself that you have judged as dark or not okay. The other side of this illumination process is what liberates you. A woman’s birthright is to love.
When you have the space to release all the baggage that keeps you up at night, your essence of love is revealed. It’s a kind of self-love that these women had the chance to define for themselves this weekend. I trust that these women are showing up open and healed in their communities today. I feel honored and privileged to facilitate workshops such as this through Celebration of Being and cannot wait to bring a new wave of women to our next workshop in February!
If you desire the happiness and freedom I’ve described above, let’s set up a free 30 minute Discovery Session. On the call we will set you up for a life of saying YES to yourself, so you too can write your self-love story and claim your freedom NOW.
May you and all beings be happy and free,
Chrissy

Fomo and Boundaries

cbs-30Hi Beautiful,

I have a story to share with you.

This past weekend I missed out on a precious reunion that happens every five years.  Why did I miss it? I wasn’t a total Yes to going. I would have gone out of FOMO, the fear of missing out. Hundreds of former co-workers young and old gathered this past weekend to celebrate, connect, and party. Some of my best friends from college were there- the men and women who have seen me at my best and absolute worst. We grew up together while staffing at this glorious college alumni camp in the mountains, and this weekend would have been the perfect opportunity to reconnect and bond in camaraderie. But I didn’t go. Why? It’s simple and maybe you can relate. My ex was going to be there, and because I am still healing from our breakup and moving on inside a new, amazing relationship, I let my No be No. While the voice in my head told me to go to this reunion, my body and emotions told me I wasn’t ready. I felt the No in my bones and didn’t make myself wrong for it.

In the past, I would have listened to the Yes of my friends over the No of myself. That cycle of self-betrayal is one of the root causes of women’s pain, and deeply influenced the lack of trust I had for my choices in the past. Saying No this weekend was two-fold: First it was an act of ending my self-betrayal, because my stand is for women to own their Yes and honor their No. Secondly, it allowed me to set up a healthy boundary for myself unapologetically.  I honored my No responsibly. I was honest with my feelings and gave myself permission to feel the FOMO instead of avoid it. What did I learn from this experience?

Fomo isn’t so bad! In fact, FOMO > SELF BETRAYAL (big time). I had a healing Reiki session Friday morning where I was invited to feel my FOMO in its entirety. (Tip #1 in my Fear to Fire e-Book: Welcome your Fear.) I felt myself reaching for the party, for the friends, for the laughter…and the sensation of missing out reminded me of the pain a child has when she doesn’t get what she wants. I realized that I was trying to have it all, but was stretched too thin in the process. When I leaned back into my experience here in the now, without the reaching and grasping- I felt peace and grounded love for being in one place. I was here, inside a safe boundary I had a created for myself to heal and grow by letting go. HERE is always better than THERE. That realization was the end of suffering for me. “Here” is all we’ve got, and I got to taste it and bask in its glory.  I could have ignored this FOMO by distracting myself (ahem, suppressing), but instead, I said Yes to the FOMO- and the truth underneath was more beautiful and alive than I could have ever imagined. Listening to my No allowed a new Yes to appear- a Yes to my own empowered choices. A Yes to trusting myself and being here, fully present and awake.

If you are ready to end your own cycle of self-betrayal and create a new possibility for self-love, let’s set up a free 45 minute discovery session.  On this call you too can explore your internal battle between Yes and No, and I will share how my services will support you in owning what you want in life and honoring what you don’t. Email me atinfo@chrissybradysmith.com for more details with the subject reading: Discovery Session.

I look forward to hearing from you!

To your Yes being Yes and your No being No,

Chrissy

The Missing Ingredients

CBS-28-WebDo you you ever find yourself saying:
“I don’t know who I am.”
“I don’t know what I want.”
“I don’t know my own brilliance.”
“I don’t know my purpose.”
“I don’t know where I belong.”

Do you desire change?
Change in your job? Your relationship? Or simply change in your way of being in the world?
Do you long to love and accept yourself fully and get CRYSTAL clear on who you are and what you want?
Do you desire to move from stuck to unstuck- FAST?

Trust me, I’ve been there. I was unfulfilled in my teaching job, relationships, and life in general- feeling lost and stuck. My life was overly judgmental and I lacked confidence and spark. After 6 years of doing deep transformational work on myself, I discovered that the missing ingredients in my life were passion, presence, and purpose. Using those ingredients, 2 years ago I led my first ever workshop for men and women to let go of the past and discover who they really are. After I facilitated that first workshop, my mission in life dramatically shifted, and I am now a transformational coach and workshop facilitator full time. As a result of living on purpose and finding my passion, I wake up with excitement, confidence, and tons of energy- with inner peace flooding my being. Not to mention I am making more money than I ever made as a teacher and have manifested the relationship of my dreams. I. Am. Happy. And I want this for you.

If you too want to turn your life around with a new beginning, where self-love is your strongest muscle and purpose your birthright, let’s set up a free 30 minute discovery session to see if my coaching will support you in achieving what you want in life.