August 12, 2022

Allowing Our Piles Grow


 

I've missed writing but life has felt as of late, as it often does, like a bit of whirlwind.

Woven into the chaos of all the crazy things that are happening in the world and in our country, not to mention environment, I have been discovering a new chapter and renewed happiness for myself.

I spent time tonight reading through some old posts here on Lines of Beauty, reflecting back over more than a handful of tumultuous years.

I guess what I want to share the most is that I have found new life & lightness for myself, after all the turmoil. 

I was pretty certain that I would reach this clearing although I remember being so afraid to make the JUMP, now almost 3 years ago.

I am here to say, that if you are in a rocky relationship, that you've worked hard to save and simply cannot, trust yourself to find a better place for yourself.

Find the courage. It won't be easy but you will be ok!


Today, I was telling one of my kids that I wanted to go to the movies alone but that it felt kind of scary.

She said, "Mom you always use to love going to the movies alone, what's underneath this?

I stopped and thought. Going to the movies alone never use to make me feel lonely, but I was afraid that it might or retrigger the feelings of loneliness that naturally came with divorce.

So I jumped in the car and WENT TO THE MOVIES ALONE and it was so nice!

Especially having not been in a theatre since covid hit.

Anyway, I love the above quote. It's so true! Let's keep piling on good things. We don't have to solve our whole life, nor can we.

Be organic, let life flow. There is no need to define anything, except for what makes us happy and unhappy.

Life is short, especially now.

Let's get on with doing what we love to do and don't let anyone rock our joy!

If something costs us our peace, it's too expensive.

(and we know if something is right, when it feels good in our bodies).

So stay away from the news, most of the time.

notice beauty, 

notice honor

and keep letting our piles of good things grow.


Here's to love!

Spread it everywhere, 

like sunshine,

Louise


June 10, 2022

The Untethered Soul




I've been directing some of my coaching clients to a really good interview with Michael Singer, who is the author of the above quote from The Untethered Soul and also the author of The Surrender Experiment. He speaks in part about noticing our negative thoughts and allowing them to drift by, instead of ruminating on them, as the brain likes to do, which is such a waste of both time and energy. 

Our thoughts are not us, they are just thoughts. A hard concept to grasp but it’s true!

When we boil it all down, negative thoughts and worrying are simply stories that we tell ourselves. 

I love what LOUISE HAY (author of You Can Heal Your Life) has to say about this as well:

"The thoughts we choose to think are the tools we use to paint the canvas of our lives."

If you'd like to listen to an interview with Michael Singer while you drive, walk or fold laundry etc,  you can enjoy it HERE

Also 52 of Michael Singer's quotes and his interviews with Oprah are HERE.

And lastly, I highly recommend The Untethered Soul Guided Journal, which is very quick, readable and full of great spiritual support and advice.

The quote below isn't Michael Singer's but from the Course in Miracles. Also a very good one.

A special thank you to Lines of Beauty readers who send me lots of good things to post.

Sending love & hope out into the world,
Louise





May 25, 2022

The Beauty of Touch

I've been meaning to write this post for forever and here I finally am.

My goodness is our world in a precarious place however, on so many levels, but maybe what I have to share will help lighten the heaviness, if only in some small way. 

Like many people, I've been a very sensuous being from a young age (reports my much older sister) and this piece of me only continues to blossom and nourish me, as I continue to grow older.

Physical touch, whether through handholding, hugging, massage, dance or through a deeper sexual connection with another soul, or just alone, is my very favorite thing in life. Nothing beats it for me- it's healthy, full of great chemical releases, it's free and what our bodies were naturally born to do.

And it's a great stress releaser.

I credit my comfort with physical touch partly to my parents who showed their love for my siblings and me, and with each other, partly through touch. 

So what follows is a hodge-podge of things that I have learned:

  • The first is from the book The 5 Languages of Love. Author Gary Chapman's test HERE is what confirmed for me, several years ago, that my top language of love is physical touch. It's interesting to learn what our top languages of love are.

  • If you haven't seen Netflix's 3-part series, THE PRINCIPLES OF PLEASURE, it is very good. Our Bodies- Our Minds- Our Relationships

  • The art of Slow Sex. There is lots of great info on the web about this very sensuous, gourmet form of slow sexual connection but this VIDEO explains how wonderful it is to slow things way, way down.

  • The Sexual Enhancement of taking a toke of weed. If you don't already know, it's great for dancing too.

  • This TOY is the bomb.

“If we can let go of our traditional notions of what does and doesn’t ‘count’ as sex we might discover something altogether more fulfilling. I like to grab parts of a partner’s body, to really worship the texture and feel of a leg or a stomach. “



  • And lastly, I leave you with FOR HER, that I wrote several years ago.

I hope you all are enjoying these first breaths of summer,

xo, Louise

February 27, 2022

January 28, 2022

Serenity in the Storm


Hopi Indian Chief White Eagle commented on our current situation:

′′ This moment humanity is experiencing can be seen as a door or a hole. The decision to fall in the hole or walk through the door is up to you.

If you consume the news 24 hours a day, with negative energy, constantly nervous, with pessimism, you will fall into this hole.

But if you take the opportunity to look at yourself, to rethink life and death, to take care of yourself and others, then you will walk through the portal.
Take care of your home, take care of your body. 

Connect with your spiritual home. 

When you take care of yourself, you take care of everyone at the same time.
Do not underestimate the spiritual dimension of this crisis. 

Take the perspective of an eagle that sees everything from above with a broader view. 

There is a social question in this crisis, but also a spiritual question. 

The two go hand in hand.
Without the social dimension we fall into fanaticism. 

Without the spiritual dimension, we fall into pessimism and futility.
Are you ready to face this crisis? 

Grab your toolbox and use all the tools at your disposal.
Learn resistance from the example of Indian and African peoples: we have been and are exterminated.

But we never stopped singing, dancing, lighting a fire and rejoicing.

Don't feel guilty for feeling blessed in these troubled times. Being sad or angry doesn't help at all.

Resistance is resistance through joy!
You have the right to be strong and positive. And there's no other way to do it than to maintain a beautiful, happy, bright posture.
Has nothing to do with alienation (ignorance of the world). It's a resistance strategy.
When we cross the threshold, we have a new worldview because we faced our fears and difficulties.

This is all you can do now:
- Serenity in the storm- Keep calm, pray everyday- Make a habit of meeting the sacred everyday.
Show resistance through art, joy, trust and love.'

January 08, 2022

The Silver Linings

 


I've been scanning for the silver linings of Covid, like an inspectress.

What have I learned?

What do I want to share?

I've certainly learned to live more in the moment and I'm letting go of the need for security, with greater ease.

Now 2 years divorced, I see, with ever-growing clarity, that I have chosen the right path forward for myself.

I am so very grateful for my health

and for my children, who inspire me, endlessly.

I am grateful for my female friends whom I hiked with in Iceland and Utah last summer.

Thank HEAVEN for women friends, that's all I have to say.

The ease of intimacy, the nurturing.

And for my 4, much older siblings, who all remain well.

I'm grateful for a magical, two-year romance that has come to a close, but healed me in a profound way, as I hope, in some way, it did for him as well. 

In time, may we carry on as friends.

I am grateful for my old running route, that I have circled back around to in the neighborhood, where the kids were raised. For so long it was too painful to return there, but it remains my favorite running route ever, and it's good to be back.

I am grateful that coaching, and learning more about ADHD traits, has helped me better manage my own butterfly ADHD. But between you and me...sometimes I just don’t want to mange it. It makes me feel like I am in straight jacket and I just want to blurt out my thoughts, like jumping beans, or be lost in my own thoughts socially, where I sometimes go :-)

On another note however, I have learned that timing, wording, body language and compassion, is everything in communication.

I am grateful that my coaching practice has blossomed into helping other people manage their ADHD.

I'm grateful to have discovered the healing properties of cold water swimming and that behind the fear of cold water, is such pleasure.

If you are scratching your head about this, just know, that I use to scratch mine as well. 

I am grateful that I have a livelihood where I don’t have to wear a mask very often.
And I am sooooo very grateful for the great outdoors and nature, as it makes me happy to be in it.

Happiness that spreads, everywhere, 

like sunshine.

I am grateful for the ability to connect with people on Zoom.

I am grateful for dating apps and for being able to be curious carefully, in Covid, 

as the world turns.

And I am also grateful, for this time in my life, to comfortably spend more time alone.

This has been the biggest silver lining.

And lastly, 

I am grateful for Betty White....who once said:

"I just make it my business to get along with people so I can have fun. It’s that simple."

Usher in simplicity!

And love.

Because the more we love, 

the more we live. 

Here's to 2022,

whatever it may be, 

may we find the peace, 

to just be in it. ๐Ÿ’—


December 31, 2021

And So It Is

 



And it isn't over yet!

I am working on a post about all the things I am grateful for in 2021 but it isn't fit to print

quite yet.

But I will say this- 

I am hopeful for a healthier & more peaceful New Year and wish one for you and yours as well.

In love,

Louise



November 20, 2021

The Dalai Lama


I continue to see so many people struggling around me, especially now that I am in the mental health field and learn of many more hardships than I use to. 

Last summer, I visited someone who had this message on their fridge. I think of it all the time as it is such a helpful reminder:

Be

In

It

My therapist use to tell me "Put your arm around the hard things that you are struggling with."

Wherever it is that we're struggling. 

One of ways out of difficult times is the embrace of them, and then we can begin to let them go, and move through, like rain.

Breath into sadness. Breath into the pain. Breath into harsh energy of resentment and hardship.

And I am here to tell you that it works!

So, if you are walking around knowing that something isn't right, take the time to download it and when you discover what the truth is, put your arm around it and do your best to embrace it.

Because then, 

you can begin to heal and allow the light to filter in again. ๐Ÿ’“


November 06, 2021

Jane Goodall at Age 87

Beautiful as ever at age 87, Jane Goodall continues to share her wisdom and hope. Still working 300 days a year pre-pandemic, she wants to spread her message, while she can, to advocate for a more sustainable future. She shares that whiskey soothes her vocal cords and her daily walk, soothes everything else. What a force. I love her.


October 27, 2021

The Softer Things



And here is another softer thing I discovered this week:

SEX, LOVE & GOOP on Netflix, a 6-part series that is right up my alley. It follows 5 couples as they try out new techniques to improve their sex lives and reflect on pleasure, sex and love. It kind of makes me want to be a Sexologist, which I have been carefully weaving in with a few of the clients I coach, as I have a fair amount of Tantra training. But this is still very much a leap for me to discuss professionally.

The influencer in me wants everyone to watch this series and arrive at a better place with their own sexuality, as well as in a better union with someone else.

In the first episode, they discuss the EROTIC BLUEPRINT QUIZ, which I suggest taking after you watch #1.

That's all for this week my dears. ๐Ÿ’—

October 16, 2021

Don't Do What I Did



This past January my doctor offered me the shingles vaccine at my annual check-up. Already concerned about soon being able to get the Covid-19 vaccine, I told her that I wanted to read up on it.

Part of my thinking was that I rarely get sick, even with a cold.

This was a huge error. 

22 days ago today, I came down with shingles. It started with a stabbing pain in my shoulder blade in the middle of the night. I couldn't imagine what this pain was, as I hadn't done anything strenuous the day before. The next night the pain was so severe that I had to take some leftover Vicodin that I luckily had from 2012 when my daughter had nose surgery. The pain continued to grow. On day 4, I went to the chiropractor but also noticed a small rash under my armpit that I thought was poison ivy. 

By day 5, the rash had grown under my armpit, to what you see in the photo above. It wrapped around to my backbone, as well as around front, to my breast bone, like a wide, very angry stripe.

Shingles, as you likely know, is the chickenpox virus, that lies dormant in the spinal column after you have it, for years.

Until it doesn't.

It also usually only shows up on one side of the body, as it did with me (thankfully).

Anyway, on day 6, I went to the doctor who confirmed shingles. She put me on the anti-viral Valacyclovir and gave me Tramadol for the pain. 

On day 7, I was sick as a dog. I had felt exhausted and flu-ish for days but suddenly couldn't keep anything down, including the meds. I didn't know if this was a reaction to the pain or the meds. The excruciating pain had transferred down into my hips and legs where your nerve endings trail. 

The doctor said I was breaking through the pain med and gave me 2 stronger ones, Gabapentin and a stronger Vicodin.

The meds (including Ibuprofen) were key in the following 2 weeks for managing the pain but I had to take them very religiously or I was in trouble. 

On day 12, I got advice from a naturopathic doctor to get a Vitamin B12 shot, which I think (?) gave me some relief from the pain, but my regular doctor would only give me one shot, as my B12 level was in the normal range.

So tonight, I write urging anyone who hasn't had the shingles vaccine to get it, as I have never been as sick as this in my whole life. 5 people I know have gotten the vaccine in the last few weeks and haven't had any side effects from it.

Tonight, I celebrate as I write this, as it's been 15 hours since I have taken any pain meds, for the first time in 22 days.

Believe me, you don't want to get shingles.

It turned me into a pain coping cuckoo, who I haven't been able to recognize, for weeks.

11/2/21  Good update: I have been having acupuncture I am doing so much better. No ibuprofen for a week :-)


October 11, 2021

A Magic Formula


It has been a hectic few months and I have missed writing. I am growing much more comfortable with my new ADHD coaching staff position the last 4 months and am finding my way through other new transitions. Frequently when we are with self-doubt and anxiety over something new, it is simply because we are GROWING.

GROWING PAINS (remember a different form of these from childhood)?

Easy to forget this but so good to remember.

The magic formula that I want to pipe in about however is about fitness. What I have been noticing around me, especially with post-menopausal women, is that their heartrates aren't getting up high enough with workout routines, such as yoga and walking, for optimum fitness. There was a formula I learned maybe 30 years ago for getting the heartrate up. You may remember it. You subtract your age from 220 and then take 65-75% of this number to find your optimal maximum heartrate per minute.

So for me being 60-years-old, my maximum heartrate is found here:

220-60= 160 and then 65-75% of this is 104-136 beats per minute. Because I have been a life long athlete I always shoot for at least 136 beats per minute if not much higher

We should be getting our heartrate in this range for at least for 20 minutes, 3 times a week. This may be a slightly outdated formula but for me it has worked really well for years.

To find out what your heartrate is (right when you stop exercising), put a finger on your pulse at your neck and count how many beats you get for 10 seconds. Then multiply this number by 6 to see how many times your heart is beating per minute.

Also, another number to keep our eye is our BMI (body mass index). It should be below 25. You can find out what yours is HERE.

I also want to say that I have heard from 4 people recently that they are having good success with weight loss through intermittent fasting. Fasting for 16 hours and eating only for 8 hours each day. But keeping to the same schedule each day. There is tons of info on the web about this if you are interested and want to trim down.

Have a good long weekend everyone.

Louise ๐Ÿ’—


July 17, 2021

Natural Highs


Our bodies really are like a natural pharmacy.

Especially needed with all this rain! 

Prayers for western Europe ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿผ

Also, another reminder that Google is getting rid of my email subscription service and I’ve switched to Mailchimp. To subscribe for post updates click HERE and put your email into the box at the top right of my website  Thank you! 

And love to all  ๐Ÿงก


July 04, 2021

One of the Keys To Life


Yes. So good.

Keep it juicy.

Whatever this is for you.


Also a bit of housekeeping-

My email subscription by Google is being retired.

If you would like to continue to subscribe to my posts,

please add your email address to the little box, on the top right hand side of my website.


Thanks gang and have a nice 4th!

Louise

June 26, 2021

Sparkly Bright Minds


With a lifetime of experience with ADHD, and as my courage coaching practice grows, I have discovered a big need for ADHD coaching and am now specializing in it. 

There is a lot to love and celebrate about having ADHD:

Those with it are usually highly creative, empathic and tenacious. 

They are good problem solvers, have great imaginations, a sense of humor and are keen observers. 

They are known for their love of, and ability, to multi-task, on a grand scale. When interested in something, ADHDers capability to hyper-focus and accomplish, is like a superpower. 

ADHDers are also endlessly curious, with perpetual energy and a real zest for life.They are often big adventurers.  

Most ADHDers are warm, loving, caring and wear their heart on their sleeve.

They also have quick minds and tend to be deep thinkers.

These are just a handful of the positive traits of ADHD.

More difficult traits of having ADHD can be:

The emotional volatility, impulsiveness, impatience, hyper-activity and disorganization that some have.

ADHD traits vary greatly between people.

Most however, have the inability to concentrate on things that don't interest them, because they are very easily bored. They have a VERY high need for stimulation and because of this, can be big risk takers. 

ADHDers also frequently lack a filter when they speak, because they don't think to pause (oversharing is common).

They can also often feel and appear restless.

Some things that aren't as commonly known about ADHD:

ADHD is a chemical, neurological disorder, as the brain has a dopamine deficiency.

90% of people with ADHD have inherited it from their parents. It's more predominant in families than height. 

ADHD can affect the ability to plan, so if people have a great idea, which they often do, it can be difficult to make a plan to accomplish their vision.

They also have a hard time making decisions. Making choices can be very hard and even when they do make them, they often change their minds and don't trust their decision.

It can be hard to make decisions because everything in life appears to be equally important.

Decisions are also often made with emotion, instead of being able to calm the amygdala in the brain down enough to take a pause and think things through.

Some ADHDers also have a hard time seeing their future.

Many ADHDers can be highly sensitive to crowds, over- stimulus, such as light and noise, other people's feelings, personal criticism and pain. They basically have high sensitivity to many kinds of energy.

ADHDers also have a hard time learning from mistakes they have made and can't see the effects that their decisions have on their future. 

They also have a hard time changing a bad habit into a good habit. This is why it is hard for ADHDers to stop self-medicating with alcohol, drugs and food etc and make healthy lifestyle changes.

ADHDers usually need to have someone to exercise with, such as a team or fitness coach, or at least a class, because they have a hard time exercising on their own.

Some with ADHD wait (and wait) for the perfect moment to get things done. This is partly because they often are perfectionists. The thing to remember is that getting something 80% done, or even less, is good enough and that nothing needs to be perfect.

ADHD is an issue with the operating system of the brain.

Thoughts and feelings can hold ADHDers hostage and stuck.

Writing down thoughts, feelings and successes can be hugely helpful, as are checklists.

Not having a meal and sleep schedule is also common. 

Balancing life can be difficult.

Where having an ADHD coach can help:

As a coach, I help clients realize their incredible strengths and help them problem solve to achieve what they want.

I guide them to connect to their passion and their values, goals and purpose.

I help them to follow their hearts and find what works for them personally.

And find their juice, what lights them up, and let go of things that don't spark joy.

I guide clients to pay attention to what they are always looking for.

I help with self-regulation and structure.

With not giving up.

And the frequently present, negative self-talk.

I help clients become more mindful to quell the intense emotions, energy and ruminations in their brains.

I help them to change the channel.

I especially like coaching because I get to help clients open up their world.

Especially now, 

as the world, so thankfully, opens back up.

June 20, 2021

Chani Nicholas

 


If you haven't ever read Chani Nicholas's astrology, she is an incredible, very insightful and spiritual astrologer that I have had my eye on for years. She writes beautifully and is also frequently very accurate. 

She suggests that we read not only our sun sign but also our rising sign. If you're interested, have a peak for what is in store for you this week HERE (go to the bottom of this link for your horoscopes).

Happy summer and love to all,
Louise


May 01, 2021

Bathing the Soul

 

Walking slowly

Walking silently 

Restoring balance, amidst the imbalances. 

Calming, clarifying, healing. 

Coming home to our hearts. 

Forest bathing. 

Bathing our souls.

April 28, 2021

What May Swirl Around Us and Within Us


Above all else, let us remember that we are all spiritual beings on a path of discovery, love and awakening.

Even in our hardest moments.

Above all else, let us remember to take utmost care of ourselves, regardless of what swirls around us and within us.

Fresh air, keeping our bodies in motion and nourishing all 5 of our delicious senses,

but also remembering to love who we are, just as we are, and knowing that we're all connected to an energy greater than ourselves, regardless of how alone we might feel.

We really are.

Above all else,

let us remember to keep searching for what inspires and ignites our soul.

Because it is in these moments that we connect with, not only ourselves,

but with spirit and with each other as well.

๐Ÿ’—

March 31, 2021

The Soul vs the Ego

 



Perhaps this is one of the biggest lessons we learn as we age.

 How I wish my father was still here to tie his shoes for him. 

Happy Easter, Passover and spring to you all.

The light at the end of the tunnel is coming.

⁕๐ŸŽ•⁕๐ŸŽ•⁕

 

March 28, 2021

Talking about Sex Like It's The Weather

I tend to get hooked on things for a time, like a certain spice, a song or a scent.

I imagine your can relate.

For quite awhile, I've been hooked on KIM ANAMI, who is a sex therapist. I like her especially because she is into Tantra and energy, which is like adding lighter fluid to the mind, body and spiritual experiences of our sexuality.

For years I've wondered- why is discussing sex so taboo when it can be so great and so very good for our health?

For instance, we may delight in a fabulous recipe, a great band, the ballet, a massage or an exquisite sunset. We discuss how these things move us, uplift us, make us happy and make us feel soooo good

But discussing sex? 

Not so much.

In the 60s, marijuana and the sexual revolution began to break the ice a bit on the subject, and of course, the younger generation has made talking about sex a much more open discussion.

So much more open. Wide open!

Like they have blown the roof off the Vatican.

But for our generation? Sometimes I feel like I am the ring leader.

And yet I retreat. Because I don't want to make people feel uncomfortable.

But this week, I introduce Kim Anami. What I like about the video below of hers, especially, is that she discusses the importance of sexual release for everyone, single or partnered and how so many good things flow from having it in our lives.

Pleasure is our birthright and we all deserve it.

And it's free ❣

February 28, 2021

Piggybacking a New Habit on Another Habit

 


I find the idea of piggybacking a new habit, on top of another one, an interesting idea (and a difficult one). But I've been inspired by one friend who does leg stretches at the bathroom sink, when she brushes her teeth. Another friend, does the dinner dishes from the night before, when making coffee in the morning. 

The video above suggests NOT setting reminders on your phone "Reminder App" to create new habits, because you have to be reminded to do something, which doesn't create a new habit.

I have to disagree however. 

Even though my reminders on my phone have to alert me to remember to do something, I am still changing my behaviors and thoughts, especially with the affirmations that I've created for myself. If you missed my post REMINDERS FOR THE SOUL, it's a good one I think!

Have a good week everyone! The times are changing. We're finding out way out of this long year of isolation and spring is at our doorstep, here in New England hallelujah! ๐Ÿ’—

February 21, 2021

My 7th Decade Begins

Photo by Caroline Fernandes
Last week I turned 60. I celebrated by inviting my two families to roast (or toast) me and dance to rock & roll.

All on zoom of course.

Going into it, I imagined it to be the worst birthday I'd ever have but it turned out to be my favorite, even though processing some of the roasts has taken time to do, as I anticipated it might.

My take-away is that going forward, I need to take better care in not embarrassing those around me by being and expressing myself, without a filter.

I am a free spirit who has always lived in a bit of a bubble, so my work to be more conscious of my effect on others, is now laid out before me.

Gratefully.

There is a back story to this of course. 

When I was in college at BU (Boston U), the school gave out metal buttons that some of us put on our jean jackets. The buttons said "Be You".

I was more than knee deep in an eating disorder at the time and surrounded by many new personalities & cultures that confused me, about who I was. But more importantly, I no longer liked being on the swim team, and the pressure, and confinement of being on an athletic scholarship. 

I started therapy for my eating disorder, quit swimming and the "Be You" button, became my internal motto. I told no one. But I knew deep down that if I was going to find my way to health and happiness, I needed to start being myself, as well as discover more parts of me, that I hadn't yet met.

I needed to find my compass.

And there began my focus on being myself and not worrying, or caring, about what everyone else thought. 

A life process this is.

I also had the added pressure of growing up with 4 much older siblings, which was kind of like growing up with 6 mothers and fathers, instead of just two. This was both a fortunate thing but also sometimes hard.

So here I sit, as a 60-year-old, still making my way, but feeling more like myself than I ever have, thank goodness. 

Time is clearly running out.

At age 46, my daughter took the photo of me above in Costa Rica. At the time I didn't like it of me at all. It was much too raw, naked and serious.

Now as my skin continues to droop all over my body, I have new appreciation for the photo and for what it captured!

This sounds familiar I'm sure.

Happy belated Valentine's Day to you all, my dear readers,

 ๐Ÿ’˜ Louise