One Session Will Never Be a Cure-All

First off, there are quite a bit of known misconceptions about how the treatment plan of Massage Therapy works. Today we are going to be discussing the concept of session length, and why massage is not a one-session cure all like many people think. As massage therapy continues to grow in the Healthcare industry, more and more people are beginning to learn and understand the physiological benefits, on top of the relaxation factor; which is a big deal in the US, considering we have the longest work hour week and lowest amount of paid days off than any other country. Needless to say, getting a soothing massage to relax is just as important as any other medical necessity. It’s been the main reputation maker of massage in North America for the last forty years, but slowly breaking out of the ‘luxury’ word association and giving people more of a reason to get on the table instead of seeing massage as just a luxury.

Note: MASSAGE IS NOT JUST A LUXURY

Massage should be seen as a regular upkeep on one’s health preventative maintenance. Our goal is to help you stay out of the doctor’s office for reasons other than broken bones or serious illnesses, etc. Massage and everything it comes with, is a lifestyle.

For those of you who get your one massage a year, or leap year, and always ask to get bone-deep work on your x, y, and/or z knot….. stop doing that to yourself! Please! You are only worsening the issue.

Contrary to the common uneducated and more importantly, uncorrected belief, a therapist should not sit back and start digging into your muscle compartments, just because they want you as a client and because you sound adamant about what you want. They should not let you tell them that you believe the more painful it is the better it will be, even though you don’t get regular bodywork, and they should not be determined to fix your problems.

1.WE DO NOT FIX, we facilitate the body’s innate abilities to heal itself. We provide for you, tools and resources you will need in order to maintain your good health-standing in between sessions in order to get you on comfortable and effective habitual journey to living a pain-free life. 

2.YOUR THERAPIST SHOULD BE EDUCATING YOU when you have that first session with them. When you request for them to go in so deep and to make it painful because you think that pain is the only way you have formed to believe change will be created, you are wrong on multiple levels.

 

I don’t want you to be wrong. I don’t want to be right. I want you to be educated and I want to share my knowledge with you. You deserve to know what we know. You aren’t just a client, you are a human being with an obligation to take care of your body in every way you possibly can and you have only been taught that massage makes you feel better. Nobody ever expects to leave a session with homework, but they come in expecting to be fixed. But how will you grow and become more aware and have your issues fixed if you are not doing your part? We want you to grow. We aren’t here to be a crutch, but instead, to be a helping guide. Our duty is to work with you. We help you during sessions, we enlighten you on what our observations and insights are, and we ask you intuitive questions that we believe will further help us get to the root cause and continue building a healthy and productive protocol that properly outlines a treatment program.

The key word here is program. Think of this like an exercise regimen. We do not go to the gym or buy the P90X home videos and workout one time and gain the results we are looking for. We have to make a commitment to the workout program. We have to discipline ourselves and make time in our busy lives to dedicate to our health every. single. day.

When you make massage a part of your life, you adopt a mindset of optimal healthy living throughout every day. You vow to become more aware of your lifestyle habits – like eating better and developing a more creative, colorful, and nourishable diet; taking care of your posture by allowing your body to be comfortable in ergonomic positions (like the positions it was made to be comfortable in); and lastly, your mental habits of thoughts! When you are living a healthy lifestyle and getting professional massage relief from your injuries, dysfunctions, and ailments, you are taking back command of your life!

Homework is another super important part to this whole thing: you should be having more than one session, because your therapist should be clearly outlining a perspective with you, while giving you resources and tools (like stretches and exercises to research, re-patterning techniques, postural awareness tools, and even some fun facts about the body) to use at home in between sessions. Homework is what keeps you accountable and motivated to get out of pain. Homework given and homework done is a body more able, more flexible, and more durable than it was a session before.

One massage therapy session will never be a cure-all to your injuries or dysfunctions or stress, but you can make a positive difference towards your health journey by making the most of the information your therapist gives you, and applying it to the fullest.

 

Happy Healing,

Zynnia

Whose Hurry Is More Important?

To get to my home, there is a light you must go through from under a freeway bridge, where the two lanes merge into one as it takes you through the dark and narrow windy road.

I was on that road tonight, coming to the bridge where I knew the light would be green, as it always is at night. Among the two lanes, I was in the left lane and the van in front of me was going slow enough, I could have passed it from the right lane if I wanted to, barely cutting it close to the merging part of the lane….

Instead, I took my foot off the gas pedal and chose to stay behind the van. After all, passing them would only save me, what? One entire minute out of the ten minutes I had left of my journey?

It got me asking myself, “Am I really in that big of a hurry? How does everybody’s hurry compare to the next person’s rush? Who actually has the bigger rush and what are we willing to sacrifice just to get somewhere we all have to be?”


photo credit: Susan Henderson

Physiologically, the act of rushing ourselves increases our stress levels and dilates our blood vessels, which puts us into sensory overload, giving us the ‘Fight or Flight’ syndrome. With that much adrenaline in that short amount of time, our thoughts become irrational and our mood plummets entirely and we enter a state of selfish, primal instinct. That kind of mindset, if you are in a car, can put somebody in severe danger if you aren’t the kind of person who handles stress or impatience well. Are you willing to sacrifice that person’s life as well as yours by causing a car accident because you’re going way over the speed limit and driving recklessly?

Are you in such a hurry to get out of the coffee shop or the gas station to beat the morning traffic that you can’t seem to pause for the extra five seconds to hold the door open for someone else coming in or out?

Do you notice how sometimes, the more you are stressed about making it to your destination “with just not enough time” actually causes more roadblocks in your way? At this point, you must ask yourself, “Is my stress about being in a hurry going to get me to my destination safely and any faster than I would be getting there even if I was calm and possibly still in a hurry?”

If you don’t want to be in a hurry – get your day started earlier. It’s that simple.
And if you’re going to be in a hurry – don’t try, but do cultivate a sense of patience and put it to use. If you don’t want to get up any earlier and you want to always leave at the same time, and you’ve accepted the fact that maybe you’re just comfortable being in a hurry – then why are you still letting it stress you out to the point of dangerous, threatening, irrational, and illogical anger?
Wouldn’t you be your better self if you just accepted the fact that you are going to be in a hurry and make the journey fun for yourself anyway?

I sing loudly and dance freely in my car to my radio. Yeah, I’m that guy”. I think I am THE American Idol when I am driving. I used to have massive road rage and cuss up a storm when I would hit traffic and road blocks, but I find the more I accept that the World will be the World, I turn my radio up and I sing my heart out and I allow myself to laugh – at anything. If I get frustrated, I laugh at how ridiculous it is if I let myself get upset over something I can’t control, which is actually pretty funny if you think about it. Are you actually getting upset due to something personally affecting your emotions on a deep level or are you just upset because you can’t control the way you’re reacting to the events outside of your own life and reality?

My suggestion: figure out what works best for you and start doing it immediately. And the next time you are in a hurry to get somewhere; determine the length of your rush and how much more important it is than everyone else’s. Then ask yourself how many other people around you at the moment in time are probably in their own form of hurry also. Do you think your rush is more important than theirs? Do they think their rush is more important than yours?

The best part of this all, is when you take a big deep breath and succumb to the realization that nobody’s rush is more important than anyone else’s, you will exhale and understand you’re not really in a hurry at all. You will get to wherever you have to be when you get there. And if you have a feeling you may be in rush the next morning, you’ll develop a deep love for morning sunrises.

Goodnight y’all.

Ditching the Daily Routine for Vacation


 

I recently got back from an eight day trip to my home-state, visiting family and friends, and watching two soccer games. It was amazing to see everyone I did, although, there is never enough time in the World to see everyone, because there is a huge list of people I still would have absolutely loved to see.

Going all around Salt Lake, laughing, seeing friends, hanging out with family, eating and making some great memories; I was lucky to have gotten the chance to run, walk, ride my bike one last time, and hike.

What I didn’t do however was: finish my plank challenge, squat circuit challenge, drink nearly enough water, read any of my book, or write in my diary once.

If it wasn’t for the cardio I did everyday, I would have completely disregarded my entire fitness and nutrition routine. There is no excuse why I didn’t write, read, or drink water.

That brings me to our topic today.
What is it about vacations that influence us to go off our routine almost entirely?



 For the majority of us, something happens to us when we start moving in the sight of vacation. Our lazy alter-ego takes over and prevails in our convincing that we don’t need to worry because we are on vacation. As if for the entire time we are away from home, our bodies won’t store a single cell of fatty tissue and our other fulfillments will take care of themselves, while we pretend like our being is on a real break from life.

That’s when it happens. We selectively forget that a good diet keeps us balanced and happy because… that brownie just looks way too good. We don’t want to pay for x amount of days at the local gym because to us, it’s just not worth it and for some reason, we don’t even consider a home workout or jogging outside. There’s more than necessary excuses as to why we can’t do a home workout other than, “I am here on vacation. I don’t want to work. I don’t want to think. I just want to relax”.

We push our routine away from us. We deny the voice inside that says, “Hey… You know you should be getting in some form of exercise right now. You know you will regret this if you don’t.”

Then we wonder why we feel like a bag of sand when we get back home to our bed. We unload our bags, put away our souvenirs and look in the mirror in disgust. “I don’t think I stopped eating the entire time.” Where does the “I’M FULL!” signal go when we forget our routine? Down with the hobbies and the email checking and appropriate water intake.


 


 Falling off my daily routine wagon confused my body, my mind, and my motivation. Only today, I started my routine again. I woke up early and got fresh and clean. I sang happy birthday to my boyfriend with candles on his favorite treat and got ready for work. I am off this afternoon and looking forward to the workout I have planned for myself as well as my dog while my Birthday Hunk is down at work for the big match today. I have been spending the last three days catching up in my diary as well as keeping track of any new events or thoughts that have passed since the days, to add them in as well. I unpacked my bags and did all the laundry in the house and cleaned and swept and today is the first day where my “vacation brain” is woken up. Cogs are turning again! I thank my boyfriend for taking on the role of permanent accountabilibuddy, because without him, getting back into my routine would be challenging against myself.


So when you recognize where you’ve fallen off your wagon, what steps do you take to get back on?

Where do you turn? Who do you turn to? How do you keep yourself inspired?


 

This is something we could print off and keep with us on our travels! I found this on google, and as what I’ve learned from it, other than being one of the more popular searches for “Getting back on Track” in the images section, this list of 10 is one of the most reposted, redesigned piece of advice for people. Why? 

Because it works.

When you don’t know where to turn to get back on track, start with the mirror.
Talking to ourselves in the mirror is extremely powerful. When we can visit with ourselves in the mirror and remind ourselves how far we’ve come on our health and our hobbies, it is the fire starter we need to push our spirits into the path of greatness!

Don’t get stuck with “vacation brain” and let yourself sink into a slump of laziness. Don’t be so disappointed with yourself that your bad week turns into a bad month. You worked so hard for what you have accomplished and now isn’t the time to deny that! (Is there ever a good time to deny that?)  And don’t ever be afraid to call upon your trusted accountabilibuddies!! That’s what they are there for. To reinvigorate the spark for your fire and help you see what you love the most. They are there to remember your why when you forget it.

We aren’t perfect beings, but we can do our best everyday to keep doing what makes us happy. And after all is said and done, happiness is the closest to perfection as the “perfect” illusion can get. And if you’re happy, then that’s good enough.


 So when you ditch your routine while you vacation and you come back home and the Real World life sets back in, don’t freak out and don’t lose hope and everything else you worked for! Remember why you made your routine, a routine in the first place, and go from there. Use your resources and take some time to zen and think, and even consider if your vacation is one that inspired you to change your routine. (because sometimes that happens too)


Stay strong! Keep the inspiration up and the doubt low! It’s okay to take full blown vacation, but settling back into a routine is not only comforting, but necessary for our sanity 😉

Have any other suggestions on how to get back into your daily regimen? Post your thoughts and comments in the section below and thanks for getting involved! Your words matter 🙂 

 

Committing To the Leap of Faith

So you read Money VS Meaning and you got inspired. You jumped out of your chair with your fist in the air shouting, “This lady is right! My god, what am I still doing in this god forsaken job? My boss is a wanker and she’s right! I deserve better damnit and I am going to get it!”
You walk into the boss’ office and tell him/her that you quit. This job doesn’t make you happy and you’re going to take your employment elsewhere. Bewilderment. You’re feeling heated with passion. You have a smile so big on your face that your cheeks are cramping. Well, good for you for taking the first step!

You quit your dreadful work environment.
You get your last paycheck.

And a week goes by.


 

Now you’re asking yourself, “Oh my god. What the #*^% did I do? I quit my job. Where the &^%$ am I going to go?”
You start having quitter’s remorse. You’re crying and sweating and wondering if there is a way to take it all back. You eat nothing but ice cream in your bed for three days. You haven’t showered or even seen the light of day. You’re rotting.

WAIT A MINUTE!

I specifically did not advise you to rot away in your sheets with pint size ice cream containers falling off your bed filling up with your bedroom with the aroma of cream and body odor.

Fear is not the friend, FEAR IS THE FUEL! 

The best thing to do when you’re in this position to utilize your free time to pinpoint your next move. Spend some time outside with fresh air, listening to your thoughts. Let them come and go as they please and really grab hold of those juicy ones that you notice are coming again, and again. The more insignificant thoughts you let go of, the more vibrant those juicy, important, life guiding thoughts will be shown to you.

The beautiful thing about the Universe, is that we are made up of the same chemicals. Which means we are undeniably connected to the Earth, the Stars, the Planets, and each other. Our thoughts are like a transit radio that takes in limitless frequencies. What we think and the thoughts we choose to entertain, inevitably become our reality. So, the Universe can feel you yearning for a job. It can also, unfortunately, feel you sulking in your rotting bedroom being the only attendee to your pity party.

Now think about this: being that we’ve established the Universe can feel you. It knows what you want. It also knows your purpose. It knows your plan. It knows everything about you even if you don’t know. But do you think, the Universe is going to shift itself and go out of its starry way to help somebody who doesn’t even have the will to get up because all they can think about is their life stresses? Nah, probably not.

But your friend, who saw your excitement last week at work when you quit; the one to which you said, “Dude you gotta read this blog, it’s amazing” and he said “Wow! I’m with you man! I got dreams I’ve been putting off for too long!” – has already received four phone calls to interview with him. One is for the design school he’s been praying to get into and the other three calls are from Design Centers who are practically drooling over his resume.

Why? Because he took the blog posting as a sign; a confirmation; that he indeed, was in the wrong place. He believed in his strength and he believed in his personal power. He believed that by closing the door to an unsatisfying, unfulfilling job, it was practically a guarantee that many wonderful doors would open; honoring his self respect and his bravery. He used his last checks to pay the rest of the month in bills, patted himself on the back for savings ten percent of his paychecks, and after one night of celebration, he woke up the next day and spent eight hours working on his resume, cleaning out his social media, deep cleaning his house, and essentially “Spring Cleaning” through everything he owned. He took advantage of the opportunity to move forward. He understood that by moving forward, you can’t always take everything with you, physically, mentally, and emotionally. While you were stuffing ice cream down your esophagus, your friend was getting his dead ends trimmed up and a hot towel shave and getting fitted for one great suit. Because your friend also understands that every man should own at least one great suit. By using his time and money wisely, he is able to invest in himself and invest in his future, which broadens the opportunity openings.


 

You must trust the process.
The Universe always knows what it’s doing.


Call your friend, ask for help for the next step. It’s okay to ask for help and it’s okay to be afraid of the unknown and it’s okay to not know exactly what to do. That’s why we surround ourselves with like-people and people who lift us up and believe in us. These are called Family and Friends. Utilize them in a time of need and you will be surprised at the army of comodarie that stands behind you to cheer you on as you get out of your smelly, greasy slump and get through the shower. They will cheer you on as you take a big breath of renewed calm air and tell yourself:

Words to live by

Repeat this as many times as you want! That’s the beauty of it. The more you tell yourself something, the more you believe it to be true. You have spent three days sulking because of the negative words you have said to your own body. Can you imagine what you can do if you spent three days telling yourself “Actually, I CAN.” I will give you a hint, your friend is already doing it.

You’ve made the decision to take the leap of faith. Take a breath, now. Smile. Believe you can. The Universe will give it to you. Make yourself a beverage and a snack, open up your windows, and make your resume a knockout. This is your moment of re-birth. When you trust in the Universe you are giving yourself the opportunity to walk anywhere, create something new for the World, or do something courageous. So walk in the light and let the shadows of the stars guide you. Even your darkest moments are meant to happen. When you feel afraid or you feel stressed out about the next step, just close your eyes and take a moment of deep breathing. Ask the Universe for help and guidance and trust that you will receive the help and guidance.

After that, the best you can do is continue to bathe yourself, put your resume out there on every resource you can absolutely think of. Print it out and personally mail it to some of the biggest companies you’ve ever wanted to work with, send it to the people you’ve dreamt of working with the most. The most they can say is no, but the more you put yourself out there, the more that doors open up for you.


You quit the job you hated so you could obtain the job/career you wanted. Wanting doesn’t come without taking action. So go out and show the World that you will get what you want!


And hey, I’m proud of you.

What It Means to Love Thy Body.

I moved to New York February 3rd. My plane landed in the afternoon and my sweet sweet boyfriend, Danny, had me picked up by a driver and I met him at his work by the time he was off. I hadn’t seen him since January 2nd and I felt like my heart was going to jump out of my chest at the first sight of him. Could it be?! Danny in person! Not Face-time, not Skype. Person. Real life. When you date long distance, the feeling you get of seeing your significant other in real life is so surreal, you have to literally question yourself if you are dreaming or not. My World was spinning in all the best ways that day.

We hugged for what seemed like, ever. We kissed passionately. And we drove home and talked and he let me gawk at the views out the windows. To him, it was already “the norm” and to me, it was no Wasatch Mountain Range of Utah, but nonetheless, trees EVERYWHERE from the location the highways running through the woods. Snow capped land with enough snow to pack inside the Big Cottonwood Canyon and shred down fresh powder for weeks.

It never occurred to me then that my insides were in the middle of turmoil.

We stopped at Trader Joe’s on our way home and loaded up on groceries. That cutie pie had stocked our pantry previously with all the foods I loved so much to my surprise. He would be leaving in two days and seeing as how I wasn’t yet employed, the only money I had was what was already in my account and he didn’t want me to worry about not having money to buy food while he was in Manchester, UK for work for the ten day pre-season trip.

We went home by the evening and unpacked my luggage and he was giving me a tour of the apartment. Our cute one bedroom, hardwood floor apartment with checkered bathroom and a bedroom with broken ventilation. To me, I thought “this is romance.” The story of lovebirds living in New York in a shitty first apartment with a living room that has no electricity and no heat in the bedroom. The lights and heat worked everywhere else and I imagined us going through this year lease together learning how to fix up the apartment ourselves. New York is expensive to rent in and for the price you pay, it’s surprising how much you get. Like the small shelled bugs that periodically are caught roaming in our house. But it’s our home and that’s what makes it special. It’s our first place together and it’s the place that will upset us and let us down when something breaks and it will be up to us to not let it get the best of us because it’s our first place together and it will be the place that tests our teamwork. Because we are a team. Working hand in hand.

I love the apartment no matter what it’s like. I love the person I see standing across from me in the kitchen dipping his Chewy Chips Ahoy into a glass of Organic Whole Milk. I love that the next evening I get to drive to JFK airport and pick up my most beloved dog and together we will be the Campbell-Laroche household. I love the bitter cold weather of the snow and the way it freezes my fingertips and toes and makes me feel as if my nose will be frost bitten with each deep inhale. I love our tiny town that is one mile long and supplied with just about everything I need a town to have. I love the accent of our Albanian neighbors and the smell of Mary’s Greek food that she cooks everyday. I love that we are the only two apartments in this building above shops and I absolutely love the narrow winding roads that go in and out of the woods along the Connecticut/New York State Lines.

Love, love, love, is what I’m getting at here.
I am telling you everything I love about everything but the most important thing connected to me. And me being my soul. Because I am a soul. My body is my vessel. My body is not me. It is my armor. I never mentioned anything about loving it.

Danny and I finish dinner. We go and lay down in the bed and he puts on a movie. I am curled up awkwardly and thirty minutes go by and suddenly…. I can’t breathe.
With every fiber of my being I CANNOT BREATHE. I began to panic and Danny’s eyes open up wide in terror as he begs me, “Ash what’s wrong??? What’s happening??” I’m gripping my lower abdomen and crying my eyes out telling him I have no idea what’s going on. I can’t stand up straight. It feels like knives and needles are stabbing me and gutting open my insides. Talons are wrenching open every muscle fiber and every connective tissue that is supposed to protect my insides. My uterus is cramping so hard; I have never felt this pain before. I am inexperienced with menstrual cramps because I can count on less than one full hand the amount of times I have had menstrual cramps. And when I have experienced menstrual cramps, all it took was a banana and a 30 minute nap on my stomach to relieve the irritation of the unnecessary process of my monthly due. This was an omen. This was something so foreign and unnatural, I felt like I was releasing something evil through the work of Exorcism that Jayme and I had preformed on people. Their violent screams and gritting teeth. I was feeling this pain.

Danny told me he was taking me to the hospital and I immediately objected. I figured, “Whatever this is, I will sleep this off. Please just get me a hot towel and help me lie down on my back.” He got me what I asked for and told me that I can’t use a home remedy for something that I have never experienced before. Given, that I beg to differ, as I study natural medicine and home remedies for everything, I knew he was right. I had NO idea what was happening and my body was sweating profusely, my adrenaline was pumping. I couldn’t be still long enough to listen to my body. Danny set the timer on his phone for five minutes and I compromised with him that at the end of five minutes, if my pain wasn’t lessened, he was taking me to the Emergency Room.

All I could think about was trying to get my breath slower so I wouldn’t have to go to the hospital on my first night moving to New York. I didn’t know what to think. I knew I would refuse medicine if they tried to give it to me. I didn’t want any drugs in my body and I certainly didn’t want to spend the night in the hospital. And my mom. Last thing I needed was to have my mom stressing out that her youngest daughter, who is prone to developing the most odd of injuries always coming out of thin air that are rare and damaging, be in a hospital in New York her first night moving to New York.

Five minutes was up.

I tried my best to smile and tell Danny my pain was better. He told me to get off the bed. I rolled my eyes and reluctantly started to move. It didn’t take but a couple of seconds before I was clenching my jaw so tight to keep from screaming in pain. Emergency Room is was. I gave in the towel and grabbed my insurance card and he hauled me to the car and we drove to the Northern Westchester Hospital Emergency Room.

A nurse awakened me in the waiting room and walked me back to the room. It was no dream….. I was really there. Danny looked sad from not being able to know what to do to help my pain. I looked at him with sad eyes, feeling like a burden because of my pain. I was wheeled off to another wing of the hospital to get scanned; finding out the omen was a ruptured cyst.

A ruptured cyst.

I couldn’t believe my ears. Or my eyes, when I looked at the ultrasound images in the small dark room, with a very comforting and friendly nurse who I could tell was probably a phenomenal and adorable grandmother to some kids out there in the World. She explained to me that the black blob was free floating fluid outside of my uterus. It would take a few days, maybe a week, for it to exit my body entirely. She was unable to give me a gauge of what my pain would be like, if any.

I just sat..stunned. Flashbacks of horrific memories began flooding my mind and in my heart of hearts, I knew how I had developed this cyst. Given the duration of time, it only makes sense that it would have to burst at some point in time. It made sense to me how it developed. And I couldn’t help but shake my head in deep, deep sorrow as I cursed myself for not realizing what the pain all those months and almost a year before was. For never getting it checked out. I assumed it was one thing entirely natural and instead, it was indeed, the cyst itself, forming and gathering particles until it ceased to grow anymore until there was no other way out other than explosion.

I accepted the news.
They discharged me and told me I could buy Motrin for pain if I felt like I needed it. Otherwise, I should take it easy and avoid vigorous workouts.

When Danny left for Manchester the morning of the 5th, I cried and cried and cried.
I went to the bathroom and held my stomach and looked in the mirror.

And that’s when I realized…..

I had forgotten to truly love my body.

I had spent so much time, for YEARS, including that day, gawking at everyone and everything around me and above me. I expressed love for people, places, and things. I expressed love to myself but never, not once, did I take the consideration to express love; real love; to my vessel. My mortal packaging of bones, tissues, veins, muscles, and organs. My beating heart that worked hard day in and day out to provide the clean blood to pump through my body and feed every square millimeter of my body.

I held my abdomen as I looked into my eyes in the mirror and cried and told my body “I am so sorry for the pain I have caused you over the years. For the impurities I have allowed to soak you down in and the beatings I allowed you to take. Please forgive me for the times I have starved you from real nutrients and water, drying you out. Of course you would begin to give up on me! I don’t blame you. My sweet body…. I love you so much. My beautiful vessel that carries me with these mortal feet, wherever I want to go; every single day of my life. My hands that write and type until my beautiful eyes beg me to shut. They never fight me. You allow me to overwork you and underfeed you and push you to your limits everyday without the amount of rest you deserve. You have sacrificed so much of your energy for me so I can selfishly live how I want to live and I think because you are my body and my mind tells me it’s okay that it is okay. I am so sorry vessel. I am so sorry for the torturous things I have put you through and I beg of your forgiveness. I express all my gratitude to you now and forever. I express my love to you endlessly, for without you, I would not be this being.” I began to specifically touch each individual organ and tell it how much I love it and thanked it specifically for the unique work it does for my body to retain power and strength, giving me another moment inside my own handpicked body. I began to revel in my love for my body and began to have conversations with my body I had never thought to have before. My body began to tell me things it has held onto for so many years. We talked, we laughed, we cried together; my body and I.

And together, we let go.

I promised to myself and my body from that moment forward, I would always remember to give my love and gratitude back to it. I promised to always take care of it. I promised to always listen deeply to it and never take for granted what it has to tell me. I promised to trust my body with its communication.

Just like our friendships, work relationships, romantic partnerships, and family ties that require love and attention and effort. Our body and our souls are tied together in their very own relationship. One that we too often take for granted.

We are not our bodies.

And when we die, our bodies are not ours to keep. Our bodies do not follow us wherever we go because our soul is timeless. Our soul is not kept inside our body because our body is a costume that merely contains our soul which is in fact our life form. Our body is there for us immortal souls to operate and function in a mortal World.

Among every relationship you have in your life; don’t forget the relationship you have with your body. Take the time to touch it, talk to it, listen to it. It is what carries you. It is what saves you. It is your protection. Your very resource for movement alone. And without it, you are imprisoned in a case that will only release you when it finally gives up. So, I say again with as much encouragement as I can muster………..

Love the World around you. Love the ups and downs that come your way. Love the people, places, and things that come in and out of your life. Share your stories and memories and make things happen.

And most importantly, LOVE THY BODY.
The very unique, exquisite, and beautiful threshold that you reside in.
Your ultimate home.

Love it with your full soul and heart and it will love you back. And together, may you both live in this Mortal life, happy, healthy, and prosperous.

 
Amen.

Tonight, the Universe means business.

I’m having revelation after revelation it seems since starting my last term at school in August. The middle three and fourth terms you really do get burned out. At least for our criteria. We are the graduating class EM1012. We are the fearless class who spoke up and spoke loud and have made an impact that will forever last on the school. We push the limits and we don’t rest until our questions are answered in full satisfaction. With study groups and encouragement, we come together as a funny lookin family and we make sure to succeed as a union. We are fighters and comrades, forever raising our hand to join in the discussion of health, anatomy, and all things moving energy.

SER: Somato-Emotional Release: A therapeutic process that helps rid the mind and body of residual effects of past trauma associated with negative experiences.

 

I think my problem is that I have just taken a fake affect on everything in life. For some reason, the visual aspect of my life is bursting through the 3 Dimensional seams and I can’t help but notice the intentions set inside everybody I come in contact with. The past comes back. Our pasts. Am I crazy for voicing this? Maybe to some. This is bigger than I am and more than what I am ready to learn. There is a power burrowing inside of me, waiting to come out and shout “I SEE YOU!” to the World, drawing the bold line between looking and seeing. This however is just a sliver. This is the opportune moment between me and the Divine that says “I will give you the information you need to succeed, but first, you must confront and make amends with your demons. Because no Angel flies when bounded by darkness.”

I have started the releasing process fully in August, and although I graduate from school in October, I suspect I won’t be done for a long time until I get to where I need to be to continue my spiritual journey. I have cried more in the last few weeks than I have I think in my entire life. I have never felt more at growing peace with myself and never felt lighter within my own spirit.

I have successfully been coming face to face with the skeletons of my closet that I didn’t even know were in there. You hear all the time that nobody has fears. “Oh, I’ve seen everything!” they shout, “I have no fears! ! There is nothing to fear in this World because man can do everything. We are forces able to connect with any flowing thing..”, and though that may be true, we can’t do everything all of the time and take on a Superwoman act without rest, without time alone. Burnt out and stressed out. Overloaded and unhappy. Rage and Creepy auras. Vasodialated and heated up with blood flowing. Exchanging energy to sustain the goal in mind. Which is to write! Write however it comes out, because sometimes this feels so much better then crying. Sometimes I just don’t have it in me. I feel horrible because Todd always thinks it’s just about him and like he is the only thing. But he really doesn’t know about any other of my other stresses. I mainly don’t tell him my stresses or bad news. I don’t want him to stress out about me. I stress him out enough, he says. I feel like an ugly person. Inside and out, ironically! Hahahaha!  I have always wondered if that happens commonly or not. Well, I do.

I am sitting in the bedroom while he is out on the couch. I feel like he thinks these are moments where he can’t do anything. And it sucks, because I don’t know how to show him that I don’t care what he does in his personal life without him thinking that I’m being cynical or careless. Because, I have a sick tendancy to be careless when it comes to him. But why should I care and continue to exert energy for someone who repeatedly disregards my own being?  I say all sorts of things with my imaginative mind. I just let it flow out, as if I’m opening my sub-concious, Of course, I strive to open to my Pituitary Gland. I have been realizing what parts of me I have been neglecting, and the Pituitary Gland is the all mighty. The connection to Third Eye.

I feel like I can’t even control the eyes I have now. I have a problem looking in the center of everything. As I’m typing, I am actually focusing directly in front of me. I’m losing a bit of my sense of time although I still know what’s going on in my home. The computer with the music playing is slowing making its way towards me and the harmonies bear in the meditation.

Bathroom Break.

 

 

Wildfire.

I’m having revelation after revelation it seems since starting my last term at school. The middle three and fourth terms you really do get burned out. At least for our criteria. We are the graduating class EM1012,

We are the fearless class who spoke up and spoke loud and have made an impact that will forever last on the school.

I think my problem is that I have just taken a fake effect on everything in life. For some reason, a visual part of my life just seems to have a weird effect in my life now. The past comes back. I notice it more when I’m high with Lion.  I feel bad when I get to that point where I usually spend that “high time” by myself. And we do everything together. We both miss our alone time, and it’s fair that we both get that. We are just people.

I don’t think I have daddy issues at all. In fact, I have seldom issues with my father. But I am the part of him that I enjoy the most. He is my total opposite, and yet one of my favorite like-people in this World.

I know the person who holds my demons. Who stole me of my innocence.

You hear all the time that nobody has fears. “Oh, I’ve seen everything!” they shout, “I have no fears! ! There is nothing to fear in this World because man can do everything. We are forces able to connect with any flowing thing..”, and though that may be true, we can’t do everything all of the time and take on a Superwoman act without rest, without time alone. Burnt out and stressed out. Overloaded and unhappy. Rage and Creepy auras. Vasodialation and heated up with blood flowing. Exchanging energy to sustain the goal in mind. Which is to write! Write however it comes out, because sometimes this feels so much better then crying. Sometimes I just don’t have it in me. I feel horrible because Lion always thinks it’s about him and like he is the only thing that makes me unhappy. But he really doesn’t know about any other of my other stresses. I mainly don’t tell him my stresses or bad news. I don’t want him to stress out about me. I stress him out enough. I feel like an ugly person. Inside and out, ironically! Hahahaha!  I have always wondered if that manifests itself into our literal shape. Mental issues taking a shape onto your body.

I am sitting in the bedroom while my babs is out on the couch. I feel like he thinks these are moments where he can’t do anything. And it sucks, because I don’t know how to show him that I don’t care what he does in his personal life without him thinking that I’m being cynical or cunty. Because, I have a sick tendency to be pretty cunty. I say all sorts of things with my imaginative mind. I just let it flow out, as if I’m opening my subconscious, Of course, I strive to open to my Pituitary Gland. I have been realizing what parts of me I have been neglecting, and the Pituitary Gland is the all mighty. The connection to Third Eye.

I feel like I can’t even control the eyes I have now. I have a problem looking in the center of everything. As I’m typing, I am actually focusing directly in front of me. I’m losing a bit of my sense of time although I still know what’s going on in my home. The computer with the music playing is slowing making its way towards me and the harmonies bear in the meditation.

Bathroom Break.

I can’t justify my personality flaws nor the flaws of other people. I can’t blame my mother or any other outside influence that has many any subconscious impact in my life. The bottom line is: it has.

Whether it was a good or bad experience, it has made an impression in my life. Whether I acknowledge it or not, these life influences sit at the foundation of every life choice I make. I could go on and on and dive into every specific issue and I could pour my heart to you openly. That might make me feel better, if we could get by with treating symptom issues.

I don’t like treating symptoms with my clients, so what makes me think I want to treat symptoms with myself? The goal here is to change the root cause!

What I have now is new-found reality. I will not confine myself to thinking errors such as “I am this way because,__________” because that’s juvenile. In the end, it’s our energetic force-field that has allowed for the influence and whatever influence has made its way, must have needed to get in for a reason. I myself have blossomed into a person unlike any other, which is a praise on its own, because that’s what we should do as humans! We have the opportunity, the encouragement above all to live our passions. Being ourselves is something not many people in this World know they can be, and yet, it’s our birth right. Stripped away from some of us at birth, from government, from abusive environments, from report cards, and societal failures. In reality, we are the only person able to stop us; if we allow someone else to do that job, we might as well already be half dead.

Influence. Impression. Impact.

So how do I, and other people in the same type of situation, deal with this?

We acknowledge it. We accept it. We change it.
But how do we change it?

By developing new thinking habits. It’s the one controllable change we have upon ourselves. We read and write all the time lists and explanations of ways to improve our happiness, our general emotional state, and our mental clarity. Be positive. Change your realm of people. Take a Me Day. Create a Gratitude Journal. Try this, try that, and let me tell you how to live a happier life in less than 100 ways.

That’s not reality though, because not everybody has the same motivation or change rate. Not everyone’s problems come from their friends or jobs. Not everyone wants to give up their inner circle in order to have a peace of mind. Not everybody has to write in a gratitude journal to make their prayers validated. Again, all that does is fix the symptoms. So when the unhappiness creeps back in, it’s back to the drawing board.

The only thing we need to do when it comes to looking for change is our thought process. It’s the one aspect that drives every action, every perceptional view, every choice and emotion and reason for what we do. If we don’t think we sit. Our brain doesn’t know what else to do other than go with the flow. By re-training our thought patterns, we can project a better outcome for ourselves.

I’m not a scientist or psychologist. I can’t tell you ways on how to change your thought process, because I don’t know where your issues stem from. I also don’t have all the time in the World to hear about them as much as you don’t have all the time in the World to talk about them. And that’s okay. It’s not inhumane of me to not want to hear about it. You don’t know me from Eve, so why should you bear your innermost problems to me by way of verbal information?

I am a Professional Massage Therapist. A holistic body worker and firm believer in the connection with our Physical and Energetic bodies. Everyday I get to work with someone new and help facilitate the healing process for them to get back to their optimal level of health, by bringing them back in alignment with the gravitational pull and balancing out the energies and emotions that are inside. I get to communicate with bodies everyday and learn something new from someone. It’s truly a blessing what I do and I hope to do it my entire life.

You can’t fix your physical problems without fixing your energetic problems and vice versa. You can’t recognize your issues and continue to write a rain check on them in the hopes you will still progress. And you wonder why you’re not changing….

For me, I change my thought process by forcing positive thoughts my way if in the event they are in deep hiding. I fake it to make it sometimes. I am only human and it’s impossible to be consistently happy all of the time. We need down sides to even us out. We need a flushing of emotions to keep us in check that, hey! We’re humans. It’s what we do.

By becoming better in touch with ourselves and who we are, we need to make that connection solid between heart and mind. We need to listen to our bodies when it tells us something. We need not to fight the releasement our bodies crave. Our bodies need the releasement and would fulfill it’s craving if we didn’t let our pride and mind control get in the way. We have a right to live free of dis-ease. We have a right to bury our burdens and set the grave on fire.

 

We have a right to shine and grow and fulfill our passionate destinies.

It’s our birthright, to burn like Wildfire.

Rebirth

I have been having a big problem with writer’s block for the past while, especially when it comes to putting material up here on planetzynnia.com.

A lot of the times, when I am out and about in the city or on my bike or just lounging around the house, I think of articles to write, ideas flourishing in my head! I would tell myself, “I’m goin to remember this and jump on the computer when I get home and write this down!” And then I got home and….. nothing.

Sometimes, by the time I even got home, I couldn’t remember anything I had thought of that day. I can’t even begin to imagine all the ideas, stories, and words I have wanted to spill out on here – only to be disappointed by my own self.

After all, we are our own best sabotage.

Sometimes, I just allow my lazy tendencies to get in the way.
Sometimes, I worry more about the material on my website. I think to myself constantly, “Can I put that on my site? Can I expand on the topic enough to make an interesting read? If I swear, will I want to look forward to hearing it ruthlessly from my family because of it? Can I do this? Should I do that? What? Why? How?”

Question, question, question, question, question, question, question, question!
And no god damn answers!

I was driving home this past Saturday night from a two-day trip to Grand Junction, Colorado. I’ve come to not mind the four hour drive so much, because it’s a great time to mull over the thoughts spinning around in my head. I can shamelessly talk aloud to myself and give myself the time and patience to make sense of it all. One of the topics I had talked my own ear off about, is this topic today: the content here on planetzynnia.com.

I had to ask myself why I started the website in the first place. And this is what I came up with:

 

For the past nine years, I have faithfully kept a detailed journal of my life. Everyday, I would take time to write in my books. At any given point, someone could find me pulling it out of my bag, regardless of where I was – if I had to write, I had to write. Location was never a top concern. The older I got, the more friends and strangers started to notice. “Ashlyn and her diary..” people would say. “What do you write in there all the time?” people would ask.
Periodically, I would let trusted friends flip through my old diaries and allow them to really get a taste of my head. Why I think the way I think. That’s when I got the idea to write a memoir. And then I opened up my first livejournal account. And then, I expressed the idea of my own website to my former boyfriend who surprised me with the birth of this website back in 2011. I truly owe this all to him.

For the first while, getting subscribers weren’t my main concern. I never truly thought anyone would even find my website; let alone read my blogs. It continues to touch me and warm my heart with every recognition I get from the comments (the ones that don’t generate a thousand spam comments that is)

This website is still a baby in essence. Which means, I still have the choice to decide what type of website this is. Do I want it to be based on one category? A self-development blog? Animal blog? Massage Therapy blog? Beauty blog? Stories? – This “blog type” was half the battle!

It wasn’t until my drive home this past Saturday night, I realized, I am one of a kind. My thoughts are unique, my person is original, my life experiences are truly diverse and interesting all in their own. When you go onto Planetzynnia.com, you never really know what you’ll read that day and that’s the beauty behind it. It’s what sets me apart from others, it’s what wakes me up in the morning and feeds my passion. Being different and being unafraid is what I want to show the World.

I want to demolish stereotypical expectations. I want to bring people together through words, pictures, and a good story. I want to encourage those who can relate to the trials I have been through. I want to give the faith back to people who may be questioning their path or life-long desires. That’s who I am.

I am an Earth Peacemaker. I am a Fire Wizard. I am a Water Philosopher.

I am Ashlyn Zynnia Campbell.

And this is the re-birth, of Planetzynnia,com.

 

Welcome friends.

photo credit: Dylan Guest Art

It’s All About the Benjamins, Baby.

Money makes the world go round.
Money is in our daily lives, we spend it everyday, we worry about it, we celebrate it.

Everybody wants to make a lot of money.

But what happens when you realize money isn’t everything?

Freedom happens.
Worries lessen.
Relationships bond.

I currently work two jobs and go to school four nights a week.

My life consists of going to work at 6am and leaving there at 11am to commute to my second job. I stay there until six o’clock and immediately leave from there to go to school until 10:30 at night.

I ride my bike to trax and by the time I get home, unpack my day from my backpack, wash my face and shower and get in bed, it’s about… Midnight.

Sometimes I see my best friend after school and when that happens I don’t get to sleep until one in the morning.

That gives me three hours and fifteen minutes of sleep before I wake up at 4:15am and do it all over again.

I’m drained.

I have no more free time to myself. I’ve been stuck on a book for two weeks too long and I am having more troubles posting blogs. I’m constantly moving in the city or catching up on sleep.

All I have been able to think about is money. I need this job for my sanity, I need that job to get paid. I need money for the show, I need money to buy winter gear, I need money, money, money, money, money, money, money.

But I have to ask myself daily, “Is me getting paid worth it if I am just losing it?”
probably not.

So today, I quit my second job. I have replaced beautiful and sunny afternoons filled with friends, coffee, books, bike rides, and laughter – for an afternoon of hot, suffocating sun blaring straight in my line of sight with three managers who pick on me, treat me like a slave, and threaten my job because I feel the need to see a doctor. I have negativity talking passed me as they walk by. It’s something I don’t have the tolerance to surround myself with.

Sometimes, making a lot of money isn’t worth it if you lose yourself in the process.

Today, I have a piece of my happiness back. I have a piece of my freedom. I have my hobbies, my interests, and my passions to indulge in. I have more time to clean, think, laugh, joke, and be myself. I have more time to discover who I am and the path I lead. I have more time for homework and shopping and cooking with my best friend.

Today, I get my life back. Because I know money can’t tie me down. Money isn’t bribe-worthy in this case. Money doesn’t own me.

 

 

Are you stuck in a rut? Are you unsatisfied with the way your job or career is going? Are you telling yourself it needs to change? How long will you wait before you do it? 

If what you have, isn’t making you happy, I encourage you to use this moment NOW to make your dreams a reality.

Remembering What You Have

We have all been there. Some more than others. We are introduced to something new and suddenly everything about our genuinity and standards fly out the window!

What the hell is that about?

Sometimes going from our crappy studio apartment to a week in the Bahamas, staying at an all inclusive can give us a big head. The great part about vacationing is you can really be anyone you want. You can blow your spending money on whatever you want. You can finally let loose, get drunk, go wild and crazy, and dance with that hot foreigner who’s staying at your same hotel. Vacations are amazing!

But sometimes, ending a vacation is easier than ending the vacation mindset. We bring the attitude back in our carry-ons. We go home and demand more, ask less. We get into the habit of talking about ourselves more, as if the people we’re around everyday really want to hear our life story – again.

It’s natural to want to keep the vacations going. When we go on more, the dream of another one never goes away. In fact, sometimes we dream of vacations and “a better life” so often, we let our real life go by in a total blur. We dont realize how great our current life is. How much we love cleaning our place up, or working out for two hours at the gym, or cleaning up after the kids. We go through the motions and neglect the people, things, and activities we care about most.

Always dreaming of something more stops us from enjoying the moments we currently live in. We forget to make our moments special. Thinking only a vacation can give that to us.

Well, if you have been guilty in those thinking traps, you’re not alone. It’s a common phase we all go through once or twice.

So in those moments of loss, remember some of these helpful tools that even I live by:

1. Taking Time To Be Grateful
Every morning when I am sitting at the trax station, waiting for the train, I spend the 15-20 minutes usually expressing what in my life I am grateful for. Sure, I wish a lot of times I was back in China. Yeah, I would love to up and move to NYC or Seattle. Go live in South America just to learn the language. I want these things so badly that sometimes I can lose sight of what I already have. So I give thanks. I thank God everyday that I have a chance to live with my mom for the time being to really solidify our relationship. I thank God for all the blessings, friends, experiences, jobs, and wisdom life has given me. I am grateful to grow up and live where I do, because I truly think there is no better place.
Once you start giving thanks for what you do have, versus what you don’t have, you will see life in a new way.

2. Pretending You’re On A Vacation
Now I know this one may come off a little weird. Sometime about a year ago, I read a blog from marcandangel.com about ways to be happier. Number 19 on that list was to pretend you are in a different place. So sometimes, as I ride my bike, I look at the environment as if I had never been there before. Not that I purposely get lost, but I pretend like I am getting to know a new city. The beauty of somewhere different. For example, a lot of the times, I imagine I am in London. The days we have a beautiful cloudy sky, the mornings with fresh Snow….. I do pretend I am across seas. Not only am I openly happier about each situation that comes up, but I am more inclined to build rapport with strangers and am able to make their day as well (or vise versa). Making yourself happy and being able to make someone else happy, is one of the greatest feelings I believe a person can get.

3. Evaluating Self-Progression
As we have all heard – we are where we are today because of our choices. With every action is an equal and opposite reaction. What goes around comes around. What you put in, you get in return. There are hundreds of different ways to say it, but point blank – Whatever successes or failures we have this very moment is because of what we have decided to do. President Obama didn’t sleep his way to the White House. The RZA didn’t just build one of the greatest, most influential rap groups in history just by chance. And Michelangelo didn’t make a masterpiece in one night.  They worked their asses off to get to where they wanted to go. If they weren’t progressing or if they felt stuck in life, they took a step back and calculated every action up until that point. They thought about what was working, what was the worse of the two decisions, and what they could do differently to keep climbing that mountain.

So if you notice that you are routinely doing the same things everyday, while your mind is dreaming up new and exciting things – experiences and goals you want to work on and explore – you need to take a seat, maybe get out a pen and paper and write down all the things you are doing now. With another column down the same paper, make a list of all the things you want to start doing. With your last column, maybe on the bottom part of the paper, between the top two, make a list of how you are going to make it happen. You need to decide which things aren’t exactly time beneficial, such as 3 hour naps a day, 2 hours of TV time, 2 hours of mindless internet gazing. What are you doing now in the day, that you could replace with something productive? Something that will allow you be the better and more successful person you can be?

Remember: Wishing won’t accomplish your goals. Dreaming won’t make your success real.

Working hard and putting in 100% effort will bring you everything you want out of life. No matter what it is you are doing.

4. Taking the Focus Off Of Yourself
Naturally, for most human beings, we are our favorite subject to talk about. But the minute you start asking questions and taking the attention off yourself, the more you learn about other people, other places, and other things. Your imagine grows. Your conversational skills advance. You grow more trust in people and in turn, people pay more attention to you. You start coming together to make things happen. You build lasting friendships and fantastic first impressions. We are not the most important thing on this Earth.

5. “It Could Always Be Worse”
Enough beating around the bush…. STOP COMPLAINING!! Whether it’s the co-workers who make you want to pull your hair out, or the gossip that goes on in school, or the fact that “Oh my God did you see who Travis came to Monica’s party with?” or even the traffic that takes 30 extra minutes because of a highway accident…. whatever you are complaining about, STOP IT NOW!!! Think about it this way, You should feel lucky that you even have a job. You can make the decision to ignore gossip. And who cares who Travis is with? If he is gonna play you, gurrrrl, you are better off being single. So you have a longer commute to work, so what? That gives you more time to double check if you are on the up and up, listen to that kick-ass new song on the radio (or any music source you have set up), or drink your coffee.

Whatever is going on in your life that you feel makes it sooooo horrible, just remember that somewhere – millions of people are unemployed. Some people don’t have cars. Some people don’t have food or houses or shoes. Some kids will never get the chance to go to school. Some kids never see the light of day where they have friends.  A lot of people in this world live an unfortunate life that we can’t even fathom. Sometimes in China, their streets are actually covered in mud and sewage. That’s right. You walk in poop. Feel lucky you can flush toilet paper down the toilet. Be grateful you have a dryer and a stove, because some places, don’t provide those in their countries.

Whatever problems you’re facing in your life, don’t ever forget that things could always be worse. That could be you in the car accident on the highway. Would you be mad then? Would you wish you could stand up and shout to the other cars slowly going by “I’m sorry for the hold up but I just went through my own winshield!”? I know I would.

 

 

One of the best pieces of advice I received was both from my mom and close friend Wang Dong Mei. They told me, “Ashlyn, before you take any action, on whatever it is, think, think, re-think, and think again.” Only after that was when I could take action, if I still believed in my heart of hearts it was the right one. When I do these five things, I fully enjoy my life more. I don’t need the world anymore, because I have the most important people and things around me. I have the relationships I have always dreamed about. I complete the goals I want to complete. I take fault for my actions. I own up to my life and realize that even though I am not rich or have a trust fund or that I can’t afford all the name brand I want to, I still live a pretty kick ass life, and no material item or all inclusive hotel that top that. Those are just bonuses. Because we can’t take the beauty with us when we go. We can’t take anything. So enjoy it while you can and remember what you have.