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A Radiant Act

A Radiant Act by Stephanie Perkinson for the Boho Collective

Sometimes I get really lost. I get caught up in all the things. Insight slips through my fingers and life feels hazy and heavy. 

Want to know what brings me back? Radiant acts. Radiant acts are my trail of breadcrumbs. Leading me back to a space where I can begin again. As many times as it takes. 

A Radiant Act by Stephanie Perkinson for the Boho Collective

Radiant acts aren't always easy. Sometimes it's not just buying yourself flowers or lighting a candle and taking a bath. It's making the choice to talk to a doctor about your anxiety or removing yourself from a toxic environment that some of your friends hang out in. 

Radiant acts are finding the tiny rainbows the day hands you and concentrating on that instead of all the hard stuff. It's remembering that agreeing and loving don't always need to be a packaged deal.

Radiant acts can also be given. This might look like a  gift certificate to get a massage or a conversation with another. One who truly gets you and sees you and hears you and gives you what you really needed ..."permission" she whispered. 

Sometimes radiant acts are literally a chore. Doing the damn laundry or cleaning the home office because the weight of not doing is too heavy to carry for one second more. It can be a picking between take out or home cooked and knowing that the one you go with is the perfect choice.

Radiant acts can be planned and scheduled like date nights or vacations but they can also be spontaneous like playing hooky or jumping in the water with all your clothes on OR with nothing at all.

A Radiant Act by Stephanie Perkinson for the Boho Collective

Your radiant act might take your breath away with fear as you step through a doorway into unfamiliar territory. Radiant acts help you tap into your power and that can be a little unnerving when it starts showing up. You might look in the mirror one day and not recognize the fierce and bold woman looking you straight in the eyes.

Over time radiant acts can lead us back home but they can also guide us into the future we've been craving. There is a certain freedom that you gain when you start showing up at the table with radiance. You may find that you have a lot to teach and still a lot more to learn. Sometimes you may not even know that the choice you have made was a radiant act until much later down the road. That's ok too, there is no right or wrong way to radiance.

So my love,  are you ready for your own trail of breadcrumbs? Where will it lead you? What does it look like? Share your radiance with us.

XO, Stephanie


what if every meal you ate was a heart opening exercise?

what kind of layers would you shed if your food stripped down & got naked?

what would it feel like to pull up a chair at the radiant table?

We begin June 15th and you can join right now for just $25 and bring a friend for free. See you in the circle...

CHAKRA BEAUTY SERIES: THE SOLAR

Let's bring some energy and color into our lives and get back in touch with our energy centers, or chakras!

When Spring is around the corner, I just really want to embrace colors, come back to alignment and create vibrant energy. So I gravitate towards working with my chakras! I teamed up with a beautiful soul sister of mine, Monica, or Notyourbigsister on YouTube, to bring some chakra beauty regimes and makeup tips you can try to enhance your natural beauty and realign your chakras!

I will show you how to create bath rituals for each chakra and my dear friend (we go way back to our theater days, and would play with makeup for hours!) will show you some awesome vlogs on how to use the chakra colors in your makeup and beauty routine!

So, what are the Chakras?

We are all made of energy. Our atoms buzz together to create this energy we know as the human body. Our body then produces more energy and this is where the chakras come into play.  The word chakra is Sanskrit and means ‘wheel.’ From these wheels we are taking in and releasing significant amounts of energy from our body. Western society is very new to this concept and way of understanding our body. Eastern medicine takes the energies of the chakras into serious consideration for overall health and has created and crafted the knowledge of what we know of the chakras for thousands of years. We can learn so much from these subtle energies within and without us.

There are seven main chakras (there are also a lot of other smaller chakras we will not be focusing on) that run along our spine. The spinal cord is the main channel for our nervous system to power our entire body with signals and messages from the brain. It is no surprise our main energy wheels run along this path. Each chakra governs an area of the body and the emotions, sensations, and functions that go with this area.

The Solar Chakra!

  • Sankrit: Manipura, “lustrous gem”
  • Symbol: 10 petal triangle
  • Location: solar plexus
  • Color: yellow
  • Tarot: Magician, Emperor, Chariot, Strength, Sun, Fire/Wand suit
  • Association: empowerment, self-confidence, self-respect
  • Symptoms: ulcers, digestion issues, weak abdominal/muscles
  • Imbalances: self-loathing, indifference, hot-temper
  • Achieved State: being
  • Crystals: citrine, amber, tiger’s eyes, yellow topaz
  • Incense: cinnamon, ginger  

The Solar Chakra in Sanskrit is the Manipura Chakra, meaning “lustrous gem” because this is where our inner light shines through. It is located two-inches above the navel and it is what helps us connect to our own authentic self. It is associated with our confidence, willpower, and our “inner fire” lit from within. When our Solar Chakra is balanced we feel confident and motivated to pursue our passions, we know how to say no when we need to, and our willpower is strong, yet not dominating. We treat ourselves with respect because we acknowledge our self-worth and treat others with worth as well. When there is an imbalance we can become easily irritable, be disrespectful to ourselves and others, our confidence in ourselves wanes, and we do not have any motivation to pursue our dreams or passions. Tempers can flare, impatience Stomach or kidney issues could arise as well.

If you want to learn more about the chakras, I wrote an ecourse all about them! With Chakra Rhythms you will receive an ebook, calendars, meditations, and recipes for each energy center! You can learn more here. Let's get started!

Solar Meditation

Let us open to the energy of Solar Chakra before we begin the beauty ritual. This will help you come into a space of receiving and openness to really allow the chakra to flow through you. Mala beads are wonderful tools for meditation and to help us focus our intent. This stunning Solar Mala is handcrafted by Natalie of Bright Star and Buffalo

solar chakra.jpg

 

From Natalie:

The SS Mala: Our "arrow head" mala is strong and steady.  Wearing it stimulates the Manipura Chakra (solar plexus) and the energies of independence, happiness, vitality and knowledge of true purpose. The "piercing'' quality of the arrow opens us to our highest potential in these domains.
Strong and Steady - Meet Your Mark             
This mala is made from quartz crystal.  Each bead is wire worked/wrapped by hand with recycled brass wire.  There are 54 beads (an even division of 108).  Our "arrow head" is hand forged from conflict free sheet brass (each arrow head is one of a kind).

If you would like to purchase one of her stunning malas feel free to email her: brightstarandbuffalo@yahoo.com

Hold your mala in your dominant hand in between your thumb and middle finger. As you pass over each bead, imagine your solar chakra glowing a vibrant yellow color and let this color grow brighter and expand outward. You can vocally say "Ram" (Rom) - that is the mantra for the Solar chakra in Sanskrit, as you touch each bead, or you can say your own mantra.... Confident, Strong, Warrioress, Focus, Positive, Happy, etc. if you don't have malas feel free to hold any yellow or gold crystals in your palms! My favorite for the Solar Chakra is Citrine! Do this meditation until you feel confident, or whatever you want to embody and begin your beauty Ritual!

Sunny Beach Waves and Sunshine Nails!

What you need:

  • Hot but not boiling water
  • 2 Tbsp Epsom Salt or Sea Salt or both
  • A few drops of Almond, Jojoba, Sunflower, or Apricot oil
  • Your favorite EO's for smell - I used Sweet Orange and Lavender
  • A spray bottle
  • Small Citrine stones ( had some that I could put in the bottle. you can always use a bigger bottle to fit your stones, only 1 stone will do :)

As I was drawing my bath, I filled the bottle about 3/4 full with the hot bath water ( I always go for the easiest and simplest ways :o). I then added my Epsom salt ( I read it is not as drying on your hair as sea salt!) I put about 2 tablespoons of Epsom and 2 teaspoons of Sea salt. I then added a few drops of Apricot oil, I also read you could add some of your conditioner, but that didn't sound appealing to me. You totally can though! I may try that next time! I then added my EO's, and dropped my Citrine's into the bottle. Now shake the bottle for a good minute to mix and dissolve the salts. That is why you need the hot water first! While I was shaking, I was pouring my intent to feel confident and sexy whenever I use this spray in my hair! 

I then placed the bottle out in the Sunshine to get some more Solar energy and happy vibes into it. I created a crystal grid around it with citrine's and clear quartz and some of my sunflower petals. 

*Click the pictures to make them bigger*

While my texturizing spray was soaking in the sunshine, I was soaking in the bath! I surrounded myself with more citrine (apparently I have a lot, but other yellow and gold gemstones would work beautifully too!) I also added Sunflowers to float along with me. I added Sweet Orange essential oil to my bath, and it was just a really happy, yummy bath time!

When I got out of my bath, I towel dried my hair while it was wet and began scrunchy it to get waves. My hair is fine, kinda wavy, but I have A LOT of it. I got my spray and while I scrunched it, I sprayed my roots, my ends, everywhere! I then blow dried my hair upside down still scrunching, and focused drying my roots for volume. I didn't completely dry my hair because I am a big believer in air drying :)

Before: Scrunched and semi blow dried

I am wearing the Sacral Eyes from the last Chakra post!

After: Air Dried and Ready!

You can also use the spray on your dry hair at your roots for volume and a pick me up! I would love to see how your beach waves turn out! Use the hashtag #bohobeachwaves on Instagram!

Sunshine Nails!

Now that you have your sassy beach waves. bring in more sunshine with this fun and glittery nail tutorial! I want to say, thank you Monica for being brave and trying a new beauty risk with this tutorial! that is what the Solar chakra is all about!

More Chakra Beauty:

Go back and try these fun beauty regimes. They will get your chakras buzzin'!

ROOT BEAUTY: DIY Mud Bath, RED RED Lips, and Root meditation. Read more here....

 

SACRAL BEAUTY: Ocean Goddess Bath, ORANGE smoky eyes, and Sacral meditation. Read more here...

WHEN PERMISSION FEELS LIKE FAILURE

When Permission feels like Failure by Stephanie Perkinson for the Boho Collective

It's funny when life seems to run in themes.

This happens to you too, right? The same mirror is held up to us over and over. It soon becomes impossible to ignore, that necessary work of actually looking and absorbing the message. 

For me, the last few weeks has been all about permission, giving it and receiving it. Friends, family, clients. Everywhere I turn, it's there.

Permission to let her be human.
Permission to let go of all the clothes you bought but never wore.
Permission to buy the packaged granola bars instead of making them yourself.
Permission to buy takeout as much as you need right now.
Permission to rest when weary.
Permission to ask a little bit more of those around you.
Permission to let a secret or two slip out.
Permission to chase joy and nothing else.
Permission to say what you mean.

Take a minute and think about your relationship with permission.

What does the word mean to you? Does it feel like an excuse? Like laziness? Like giving up? Like failure? Like complacency? Like undeserved justification?

What if it meant approval, a blessing, freedom, empowerment, acceptance or approval? Those are beautiful things, my love. Isn't that what we are all seeking? From others? From ourselves? 

Think about how you feel inside permission when someone else grants it to you. You breathe easier, your shoulders soften, space is opened up where is once felt so crowded and uncomfortable. It's ok to desire those things. It's ok to seek permission from others sometimes. You don't always have to go it alone. Giving ourselves permission isn't really a gift when it's wrapped in guilt. Sometimes, it's only when it's from the lips of another, that we can actually sink into the goodness that comes from that offering. It truly is a blessing to have someone in your life who can see you so fully, in your striving and your struggling. 

The end goal though...that's the one that is the most powerful. The end goal is when you can begin to look in the mirror and truly give YOURSELF permission to take what you need. That is when the magic happens. That is when the gifts you grant yourself start to ripple out and effect those around you.  Seeing someone else give themselves permission allows others to start doing the same. Make ripples my love.

 Permission is most definitely not failure and there is no shame is receiving.
 


Deeply Rooted Spring Cleanse stephanieperkinson.com

Stephanie is a certified holistic health councilor who helps women reclaim what they have lost and supports them as they heal their relationship with themselves and their space.

Sign-ups are now open for the DEEPLY ROOTED SPRING CLEANSE beginning April 20th. Follow the link to join the circle that is forming.

CHAKRA BEAUTY SERIES: THE SACRAL

Let's bring some energy and color into our lives and get back in touch with our energy centers, or chakras!

When Spring is around the corner, I just really want to embrace colors, come back to alignment and create vibrant energy. So I gravitate towards working with my chakras! I teamed up with a beautiful soul sister of mine, Monica, or Notyourbigsister on YouTube, to bring some chakra beauty regimes and makeup tips you can try to enhance your natural beauty and realign your chakras!

I will show you how to create bath rituals for each chakra and my dear friend (we go way back to our theater days, and would play with makeup for hours!) will show you some awesome vlogs on how to use the chakra colors in your makeup and beauty routine!

So, what are the Chakras?

We are all made of energy. Our atoms buzz together to create this energy we know as the human body. Our body then produces more energy and this is where the chakras come into play.  The word chakra is Sanskrit and means ‘wheel.’ From these wheels we are taking in and releasing significant amounts of energy from our body. Western society is very new to this concept and way of understanding our body. Eastern medicine takes the energies of the chakras into serious consideration for overall health and has created and crafted the knowledge of what we know of the chakras for thousands of years. We can learn so much from these subtle energies within and without us.

There are seven main chakras (there are also a lot of other smaller chakras we will not be focusing on) that run along our spine. The spinal cord is the main channel for our nervous system to power our entire body with signals and messages from the brain. It is no surprise our main energy wheels run along this path. Each chakra governs an area of the body and the emotions, sensations, and functions that go with this area.

SACRAL 101

  • Sankrit: Svadhisthana, “sweetness”
  • Symbol: 6 petal crescent moon
  • Location: lower abdomen
  • Color: orange
  • Tarot: High Priestess, Moon, Temperance, the Cup suit
  • Association: creativity, sexual energy, feelings, intuition
  • Symptoms: lower back issues, bladder issues, moon-time/reproductive issues
  • Imbalances: over-emotional, jealousy, possessiveness
  • Achieved State: depth of emotions
  • Crystals: amethyst, aquamarine, carnelian, black/peach/rainbow moonstone, orange calcite, rose quartz, selenite 
  • Incense: jasmine, lemon balm, rose, sweet orange

The Sacral Chakra in Sanskrit is the Swadhishthana Chakra and is the second energy spot of the Chakra body. It is located two inches below the belly button and helps connects us to the watery realm of our emotions and creativity. It is in charge of the sexual organs, lower back, and intestines, as well as our emotions and intuition. When our Sacral Chakra is balanced we feel open to our emotions and can control our reactions in healthier ways. We also have a fulfilling sex life and can trust our intimate partners. We can fully listen and be open to our intuition to make healthy decisions and our own creative flow is rich. When there is an imbalance in the Sacral area we may become blocked from our creativity and it is hard to listen or trust our intuition. We may feel like helpless victims to our emotional whims and our libidos are non-existent. Lower back pain and sexual issues may persist as well.

If you want to learn more about the chakras, I wrote an ecourse all about them! With Chakra Rhythms you will receive an ebook, calendars, meditations, and recipes for each energy center! You can learn more here. Let's get started!

Sacral Meditation

Let us open to the energy of Sacral Chakra before we begin the beauty ritual. This will help you come into a space of receiving and openness to really allow the chakra to flow through you. Mala beads are wonderful tools for meditation and to help us focus our intent. This stunning Sacral Mala is handcrafted by Natalie ofBright Star and Buffalo

From Natalie:

Banyan Tree Mala

Reminder jewelry by bright star and buffalo

Our "Banyan Tree" mala is warming and healing...  wearing it stimulates the Svādhishthāna Chakra (sacral) and the energies of creativity, sensuality, faith, satisfaction, and clarity of feeling. The "Banyan'' leaf and roots open us to our highest potential in these domains.
This mala is made from bayong wood.  Each bead is wire worked/wrapped by hand with recycled copper wire.  There are 36 beads (an even division of 108).  Our "Banyan leaf and roots" is hand forged from conflict free sheet copper (each one is unique) as an end/Guru bead.

*A percentage of each mala purchase goes to Trees for The Future - A non-profit devoted to reforestation and the elimination of economic hardship due to deforestation in environmentally decimated regions of the world.  Thank you for your contribution.
 

If you would like to purchase one of her stunning malas feel free to email her: brightstarandbuffalo@yahoo.com

Hold your mala in your non-dominant hand in between your thumb and middle finger. As you pass over each bead, imagine your sacral chakra, womb space, glowing a vibrant orange color and let this color swirl within your womb, taking you deeper into your inner ocean. You can vocally say "Vam" (Vom) - that is the mantra for the Sacral chakra in Sanskrit, as you touch each bead, or you can say your own mantra.... Sexy, Fertile, Sensual, Whole, Worthy, Creatrix, Goddess, etc. if you don't have malas feel free to hold any orange or sacral crystals in your palms! My favorite for the Sacral Chakra is Moonstone! Do this meditation until you feel sexy, or whatever you want to embody and begin your beauty Ritual!

Sensual Sacral Chakra Bath

Sacral Stones:

  • Moonstone: This stone represents the waxing moon and full moon. She reminds of the cycles of ebb and flow and how nothing can remain the same for long. She assists with sacral and third-eye issues to really allow us to listen and trust our intuition. She helps to balance hormones, moon-time and emotions. A stone for new beginnings.
  • Carnelian: She assists with sacral issues, such as sexual and creative energies, womb issues, and because of her vibrancy, she replenishes energy. She will help you tap into your creativity while giving you energy to do so! Keep her around while you create and see where it leads. She lends you courage to release sexual trauma and pain, while giving you enthusiasm and encouragement.
  • For this bath surround yourself with Sacral stones, lots of bubbles, and add 20 drops of Ylang Ylang essential oil to the water. You will feel like a Goddess, trust me.

Feel free to add cups of sea salts to bring in the ocean energy of this chakra. Feel yourself becoming one with the water.

When you step out of the water, anoint your womb/sacral chakra with the Ylang Ylang and relax the rest of the evening. Walking around in a flowy kimono adds an extra flutter to this ritual. Afterward try this beautiful eye shadow tutorial bringing the color vibration of orange and sassiness to your aura. Have fun adorning yourself!

More Chakra Beauty:

Go back and try these fun beauty regimes. They will get your chakras buzzin'!

ROOT BEAUTY: DIY Mud Bath, RED RED Lips, and Root meditation .Read more here....

CHAKRA BEAUTY SERIES: THE ROOT

Welcome to this new and fun series!

Let's bring some energy and color into our lives and get back in touch with our energy centers, or chakras!

When Spring is around the corner, I just really want to embrace colors, come back to alignment and create vibrant energy. So I gravitate towards working with my chakras! I teamed up with a beautiful soul sister of mine, Monica, or Notyourbigsister on YouTube, to bring some chakra beauty regimes and makeup tips you can try to enhance your natural beauty and realign your chakras!

I will show you how to create bath rituals for each chakra and my dear friend (we go way back to our theater days, and would play with makeup for hours!) will show you some awesome vlogs on how to use the chakra colors in your makeup and beauty routine!

So, what are the Chakras?

We are all made of energy. Our atoms buzz together to create this energy we know as the human body. Our body then produces more energy and this is where the chakras come into play.  The word chakra is Sanskrit and means ‘wheel.’ From these wheels we are taking in and releasing significant amounts of energy from our body. Western society is very new to this concept and way of understanding our body. Eastern medicine takes the energies of the chakras into serious consideration for overall health and has created and crafted the knowledge of what we know of the chakras for thousands of years. We can learn so much from these subtle energies within and without us.

There are seven main chakras (there are also a lot of other smaller chakras we will not be focusing on) that run along our spine. The spinal cord is the main channel for our nervous system to power our entire body with signals and messages from the brain. It is no surprise our main energy wheels run along this path. Each chakra governs an area of the body and the emotions, sensations, and functions that go with this area.

The Root Chakra!

  • Sankrit: Muladhara, “root support”
  • Symbol: 4 petal square
  • Location: base of spine
  • Color: reds, browns, and greens
  • Tarot: The Magician, The Empress/Emperor, The World, Pentacle suit
  • Association: groundedness, survival, money, family
  • Symptoms: constipation, weight issues, knee and foot issues, low back and lower body issues
  • Imbalances: fear, trust issues, money issues, low body image
  • Achieved State: stillness, abundance, overall healthy well-being
  • Crystals: agate, black tourmaline, bloodstone, garnet, hematite, obsidian, red calcite, red jasper, ruby, smoky quartz, green stones; green aventurine, green calcite, green jade, malchite, moss agate, tree agate, 
  • Incense: patchouli, cedar, pine, rosemary

The Root Chakra in Sanskrit is the Muladhara Chakra and is the foundation of the Chakra body. It is located at the base of the spine and it is what helps connect our body and spirit to Mother Earth. It is associated with survival, family, money/security, and the relationship we have with our own body. When our Root Chakra is balanced we feel abundant, safe, active and energetic, and feel connected to Mother Earth and all living things. We are nurturing and giving while taking care of ourselves as well. When there is an imbalance in the Root we may become depressed and lethargic, greedy, clingy, overeat or lose our appetite, have financial issues, trust issues, and/or body image issues. We could become physically ill as well. This is the our body’s way of saying, “Please, take care of me!” We owe to ourselves right?! It is so essential to heal this Chakra first before moving to higher ones. Without a strong foundation we are setting ourselves up for more obstacles ahead.

If you want to learn more about the chakras, I wrote an ecourse all about them! With Chakra Rhythms you will receive an ebook, calendars, meditations, and recipes for each energy center! You can learn more here. Let's get started!

Root Meditation

Let us open to the energy of Root Chakra before we begin the beauty ritual. This will help you come into a space of receiving and openness to really allow the chakra to flow through you. Mala beads are wonderful tools for meditation and to help us focus our intent. This stunning Root  Mala is handcrafted by Natalie ofBright Star and Buffalo

From Natalie:

 

Rooted Mala

Reminder jewelry by bright star and buffalo

Our "Rooted" mala is reaching and spreading...  wearing it stimulates the Muladhara Chakra (root) and the energies of vitality, strength, grounding and passion. The "rooting'' quality of the sacred rudraksha bead and lily petal opens us to our highest potential in these domains.
This mala is made from dark rose wood.  Each bead is wire worked/wrapped by hand with recycled copper wire.  There are 54 beads (an even division of 108).  Our "lily petal" is hand forged from conflict free sheet copper (each one is unique).  We include a large rudraksha to create a truly unique and powerful end/Guru bead.

*A percentage of each mala purchase goes to Trees for The Future - A non-profit devoted to reforestation and the elimination of economic hardship due to deforestation in environmentally decimated regions of the world.  Thank you for your contribution.

 

If you would like to purchase one of her stunning malas feel free to email her: brightstarandbuffalo@yahoo.com

Hold your mala in your dominant hand in between your thumb and middle finger. As you pass over each bead, imagine your root chakra, base of your spine, glowing a vibrant red color and let root chakra grow roots through your floor and deep into the earth, grounding you down to Gaia. You can vocally say "Lam" (Lom) - that is the mantra for the Root chakra in Sanskrit, as you touch each bead, or you can say your own mantra.... Grounded, Centered, Safe, Protected, Connected, Supported, Love, etc. If you don't have malas feel free to hold any red or brown crystals in your palms! My favorite for the Root Chakra is Red Jasper or Smoky Quartz! Do this meditation until you feel grounded, or whatever you want to embody and begin your beauty Ritual!

Root Chakra "Mud" Bath

What you need:

  • 1 cup Epsom salt

  • 4 teaspoons French Red clay, or any dry clay!

  • Rosemary Sprigs

  • Root crystals; I chose: Jasper, Smoky Quartz, Garnet

  • 4 Clear Quartz points

  • Essential oils for your root; I chose Bergamont and Patchouli

 

Draw your bath and add the salt and clay while the water is running. Make sure to mix the clay so it is not lumpy. Add your sprigs and add as much as you like! 

Start with 5 drops of Patchouli and 2-3 drop of Bergamont. The amount of oil is up to your preference, just remember they are very potent! A little goes a long way!

When you are ready, step in to your bath. Settle in. Take each crystal and hold it at heart center. Imagine a glowing red light at the base of your spine growing brighter and brighter. You can place your crystals on each corner of your bathtub or give them a little bath first! Be sure to place each crystal point on each corner with either the points pointing out to detox your body and root chakra, or pointing in to replenish and nourish. You can always switch them around too!

Remember to relax and check in with your body. What is it telling you? What do you need to nourish your root more?

I also used this luscious scrub from Gypsy Moth Sol. The name Blushing is perfect for it!  I felt like I was spreading jam on my body! So luxurious and rich and just what my body needed. I also exfoliated my lips with it to prepare for the Chakra beauty video below!

When you are ready to get out, put a drop of patchouli at the bottom of your feet to keep stimulating your root chakra throughout your day or evening. Once you have cleansed and awakened your root chakra try one of Monica's stunning red lips below!

Root Chakra Red Lips!

NO MORE PUNISHMENT

No More Punishment by Stephanie Perkinson for the Boho Collective

It was 0 out yesterday. With a windchill of -25. For real. 
The ocean down the street was literally steaming because it was so much warmer than the air. I tried to take a picture but my phone died as soon as I whipped it out of my pocket. So here's a picture of my feet instead. 

I digress, so it was 0. And I was cold. I has run outside in my sweater to go turn the car on so it could warm up while I got ready to go. I ran back into the house and my whole body was freezing. Hands numb. So I put another layer on, along with my coat and hat and mittens. Then I began to run in place. Faster and faster until I was going so fast I started laughing. It felt...playful. The stuff on the shelves were shaking. I kept going until my legs were burning and I felt the warmth in my core radiating out to my fingers. If anyone had seen me they probably would have thought I was crazy. 

While I was running in place I had memories of elementary school. Leaning back and pumping my legs to I could swing higher and higher. Borrowing my friends "Skip-it" was my jam. Jump roping.  I loved jumping rope, I remembering feeling like I could do it forever.  I wondered how long I could jump rope now. Suddenly, my brain was flooding with memory after memory of how I used to move.  How I loved to run because it made me feel like the cheetah girl in Thundercats. How my pink banana seat bike transformed into my chariot as I raced down the sidewalk. How I loved to build forts with giant fallen sticks in the woods and swim all day long.  

When did moving stop becoming fun? 
When did it turn into punishment?
Why did it feel like such a chore now?
How old was I when it all changed?
What happened?

When I was 7 or 8 or 9 I didn't wake up in the morning and say to myself..."Steph, you better log in at least 30 minutes of jump roping so it will count". Count for what? It made me sad and angry at the same time. How much time have I wasted as a teenager and an adult thinking movement was punishment. That in order to be forgiven I needed to pay penance in the form of running when I didn't want to run. Staying on the elipticle even though I was bored to tears. Lifting the weights over and over, doing sit-ups until I couldn't breathe and swimming the laps because it was never going to be enough to make up for the fact that my thighs still. rub. together.

Seriously. What the fuck?

As soon as I stopped running in place like a maniac in my living room all I could think about was...I WANT THAT BACK. That freedom I felt as a child to just move in whatever way that feels good. For however long it feels good to move like that.  There will be no more prescribed daily movement unless I want it. It won't be to get my heart rate up or because I'm setting goals. No more something I check off on my to-do list. No more making it about weight loss. No more wondering if what I did was good enough. No more "if I'm not sweating and straining, it doesn't count".

New rule: If I'm not smiling, at least on the inside then I'm not doing it. I can't 

I was not put on this earth to punish myself like this (neither were you). For so long I've had these totally bullshit ideas about exercise and it's really messed me up. It's taken away so much joy that could have been. I never thought running in place could help me finally release years of pain and disappointment in myself. It made room for some much needed forgiveness.

You know, it's kinda scary writing this all out to you. It's hard to trust that I'm going to like the outcome. I wonder how long it will take to fully heal my relationship with movement. I worry that it will take too long. I wonder if I'll go back to my old thinking. That it won't ever be right. That it's a strange duality to be sharing this while simultaneously coaching amazing women back to center in there own lives. I'm learning that it's ok to learn and teach at the same time. It can't all be candlelight and rose petal tea. If there was one resolution I did make this year, it's to stop worrying so damn much about what others are going to think and allow myself to not only submerge into my truth but talk about it too. 

Happy New Year loves. It's gonna be a good one. I can feel it. Also, I love you. 
XO, Stephanie


Stephanie Perkinson for the Boho Collective

Stephanie is a certified holistic health councilor who helps other women reclaim what they have lost and supports them as they heal their relationship with themselves, beginning with the food on their plate and the space in their homes. Want to learn more?

Come say hello at stephanieperkinson.com