30 Day Challenge – No Gluten

April 9, 2010 by · Comments Off
Filed under: 30-Day Challenge, No Gluten Challenge 

My next 30 Day challenge will actually be one of two challenges I have going on at the same time. I decided to do two this month. All of my previous challenges have dealt with NOT DOING something. This one falls in line with that same challenge. I will have a diet that does not include Gluten which means NOT eating anything with gluten (wheat). My other challenge (Meditate 30 minutes daily for 30 days) will deal with DOING something every day for 30 days.

I officially started on April 6th; thus day 30 will be May 5th. No Gluten will be huge for my diet. Bread, tortillas (my mexican food!) and pasta are items that play large roles in my meals. I believe that this challenge will be my most challenging one thus far and I also expect that it may have a large impact on my health.

Would love to hear from others that have gone through the elimination of gluten from their diets!

30 Day Challenge – No Alcohol – DONE!

April 8, 2010 by · Comments Off
Filed under: 30-Day Challenge, No Alcohol Challenge 

March 24th marked my 30th day of No Alcohol! It was completed successfully.

Out of all my challenges thus far this year, I thought this would be the hardest. This challenge was definitely challenging but I did find it easier than I had expected it to be.  As mentioned in a prior post, my drinking habits consist of a couple glasses of wine – 5 days a week on average.  In addition to my normal lifestyle there were several extra-curricular social activities over the month that I would have normally had a drink that would have helped me feel more comfortable. Being able to go through these events without this crutch was satisfying. It was satisfying to have made it through these without drinking and dealing directly with my typical feelings of inadequacy while in these types of social settings.  (Something that I continue to work on!)

As far as health, this challenge made very little impact here.  I didn’t have any weight loss however what I did notice was that I was able to sleep much better – deeper really.

Going forward I will be cutting back my intake for two reasons. One, I do believe it is healthier for me both for my physical health but also my mental health and two, as we work to pay off our debt this will definitely help us save some on outgoing expenditures (did I ever mention that we tend to like more expensive wines?)

These challenges have been great for me on different levels.  I have felt that exercising this “will” is good for me.  I do find that I am finding some other impulse activities being easier to slow down and make real decisions around.  So, on to my next challenges!

30 Day Challenge – No Sugar – The End

February 28, 2010 by · Comments Off
Filed under: 30-Day Challenge, No Sugar Challenge 

Although the Blog post for the end of this challenge is a bit late, it is nonetheless successfully over. It ended one day prior to our vacation which explains the delay in posting.

This challenge was not difficult for me. I believe the reason that it wasn’t difficult was because I had already cut out all High Fructose Corn Syrup and many other forms of sugar from my diet. I have not been 100% sugar free (one of my downfalls is ice cream!), but have definitely minimized eating it. While on this challenge I was educated that sugar is thought to be the cause for MANY health issues. A friend of mine sent me a link that lists impacts to our health. This link can be found here.

If you needed any motivation to cut back on sugar, this list will do that for you!

This challenge was shared with a friend of mine and she saw her migraines diminish quite a bit. She is an awesome writer and you can see the blog posts of her experience here. She gave me the recipe for a great dried fruit bar as well as a couple of them to help me curb craving. I did not have any major health impacts (including weight loss). Although I did not find this challenge difficult or overly impacting; as soon as my challenge was over I made my way to the nearest DQ!!

Because I learned so much about processed white sugar I will continue to minimize this in my diet!

I welcome any comments and thoughts you might have on this challenge.

Balance is Bogus

July 24, 2009 by · Comments Off
Filed under: Book Reviews 

Balance is Bogus!

How many times have you asked for a balanced life? Is this one of your goals? After reading Harmonic Wealth: The Secret of Attracting the Life You Want by James Arthur Ray I now have a different view of this often reached for goal! James Ray was one of the teachers featured in The Secret and owns a multi million dollar corporation dedicated to teaching individuals to create wealth in all areas of their lives. His journey caught my interest because of the dual path he has traveled…one of business and the other of spirituality. He has traveled the world spending time with indigenous people; finding shamans that have helped shape his philosophy as well as running a successful corporate career. This journey plus his growing up with a father that is a Protestant minister has given him a unique platform in order to teach others on how to find the way to integrate our spiritual practices with the physical world desires. Harmonic Wealth: The Secret of Attracting the Life You Want, made it to number five on the New York Times Best-Seller List after its first week of release. To date, his books have been translated into 20 languages and are published in 83 countries around the world.

He focuses on five pillars:
1.) Financial
2.) Relational
3.) Mental
4.) Physical
5.) Spiritual

He claims “balance is bogus”; he writes that the only people that are balanced are those that are dead. My mind immediately went – – WHAT? I have been spending so much time working to balance these pieces of my life and hearing that it was BOGUS definitely caught my attention. He describes what balance is by having us picture a scale. A scale is balance and – BORING — he then compares the scale to that of a band. There is never a balance, there is always one instrument or a voice that is louder – one starts up and then stops, then another starts up and then starts… what happens is the band finds harmony. I looked up the definition of harmony:
The just adaptation of parts to each other, in any system or combination of things, or in things, or things intended to form a connected whole; such an agreement between the different parts of a design or composition as to produce unity of effect; as, the harmony of the universe.

As this sunk in I felt a rush of relief. Oh my goodness – in my head I have always struggled to keep things equal and when I found my life leaning towards one way or another I would feel a level of stress and often some guilt for not getting enough done. He explains that everyone should tune into their life and where they are in relation to each of the pillars. If there is a part of your life that seems extremely lower than the other parts then we should focus on that area for a time until it rebounds. But expect that other areas of your life will slow down as you focus on this other area. He tells us “that all five areas must have some attention all the time but not all five areas demand all your attention all the time.”

The entire book is full of questions that will challenge your beliefs, help you focus on your values and what drives you, and pearls of wisdom on how to reach goals within each of the pillars. James also conducts Weekend workshops that change thousands of lives. . I highly recommend this book and any of James Ray’s materials and free events to anyone wanting to find harmony in their own life. For more information check out James Arthur Ray and his company: James Ray International at:

James Arthur Ray