3 ½ Minutes to find JOY: Journaling to the Hummingbird Within

3 ½ Minutes to find JOY: Journaling to the Hummingbird Within

The Hummingbird, whose medicine is JOY, represents your inner royalty; JOY is at the heart of ruling your kingdom, of rising above any situation, of overcoming challenges with ease. JOY fuels the ability to be emotionally agile; to hover, move forward, backward, up, down or sideways. When we have JOY in our lives, we can live with EASE.

In this exercise, you will spend 3.5 minutes a day for 6 days writing to the Hummingbird within – that tiny space with the capacity to hold something magnanimous; your inner JOY as it relates to the ways Hummingbird moves in the world and where you are in life (hovering), where you have been (backwards, sideways, up and down) and where you are going (forwards).

To assist you in accessing the joy-filled Hummingbird space, consider getting in touch with your younger, well-prepared self – the self that enthusiastically throws herself into experiences and is not afraid to express the full spectrum of her emotions.

JOY can be found anywhere, experienced at any time. Often our JOY can appear to be unmoving as if in a state of torpor to survive the winter of our chilled hearts.

Hummingbirds can rest and perch and even withstand the cold temperatures but they cannot be confined; trapped JOY perishes as quickly as a hummingbird trapped in a cage.

Instructions: 

1)   Set a timer for 3 ½ minutes

2)   Write freely in your magical diary

3)   Consider structuring the entries in the form of a short letter addressed directly to Hummingbird

4)   Use the below prompts (one per day) to assist if you feel stuck

 Our emotions, and how we respond to them, can be as nimble as Hummingbird when JOY is fully honored, ignited and expressed:

  •     Hover  – take a pause and feel nourished by where you are right here, right now. Where is your JOY? What brings it to you? 
  •     Backwards – employing hindsight we can honor a time in the past when we felt joyful. Write to hummingbird about how you hold those images and moments dear to your heart. Express gratitude.
  •     Up – a chance to look down from a perspective of above; what JOY does Hummingbird see from this vantage point? What opportunities are there?
  •     Down – write to Hummingbird about a time you doused your JOY for what you thought was the benefit of someone else. 
  •     Sideways­ – was there a time your JOY was expressed in a way that made you or others uncomfortable? Was it misplaced because it wasn’t fully expressed?
  •     Forward – commit to Hummingbird your intention to spread JOY within yourself and share it with others

Integration

On the 7th day, after you have spent time addressing and uncovering the JOY inside, take what has been stirred up and turn the energy towards your closet, where clothes offer an immediate channel for expression.

Spend just 3 ½ minutes looking at or even just thinking about your current closet.

Ask yourself:  what clothing inspires JOY in you? Is there something you don’t typically get to wear that you wish you could? A Sequin romper? A silk robe? A pair of panties you think are only for “special occasions”?

Build your outfit for the day around this item and commit to embodying JOY in your fullest expression, even without speaking, and experience how your heart sings a new tune. 

Or perhaps you recognize it as a melody your heart sang before you grew accustomed to denying yourself access to the JOY, the Hummingbird, within.

Once these exercises are complete, notice how Hummingbird begins to again make the joyful sounds in your life – a buzzing feeling in your heart like wings beating 50 times per second.

****

A personal note:

This practice is adapted from a dream I had the night before I would be officially saying good-bye to my father’s house. For months I had put every ounce of me into spending his final moments with him, to planning his service, delivering the eulogy and then moving out of our home of 20 years. My entire being was exhausted, my business was on hold and I hadn’t seen my daughter in weeks. This dream reminded me that whether we are in the rut of our mundane lives or even in the depths of grief, JOY remains and begs to be set free.

Helena Grant is a Life Stylist on a mission to help women live the lives they desire and deserve by exploring channels of creativity, wellness, spirituality and material abundance. She works 1:1 with clients to find profound, lasting and fully-embodied happiness. CLICK HERE to discover ways to work directly with Helena.

If I Was A Pair of Shoes: The Process of NOT Buying the Sparkly Leopard Open-Toed SJP Booties

If I Was A Pair of Shoes: The Process of NOT Buying the Sparkly Leopard Open-Toed SJP Booties

It became an existential debate – an internal conversation not just about what I spend my money on but even more profoundly, questions that centered around:

Who am I?

What me am I presenting to the world?

Of course they were fabulous. Well-made and ostensibly, quite comfortable considering I was teetering on my tiptoes, supported by a thin nail in a plushly-carpeted store.

And I think, in essence, these beautiful shoes spoke to me on a deep level because if I was a pair of shoes, I would totally be a pair of sparkly leopard open-toed booties.

One hundred and ten percent.

And yet, no matter how hard I tried, nor how long I sat admiring how adorable and sexy my feet looked as the light of the store danced off the glitter…

…I could not see how these beautiful specimens would “fit” into my life both literally and figuratively.

Sure I could have worn them that very night to the Gwen Stefani concert I was attending in Las Vegas. Paired with my denim jumpsuit they would have garnered just the sort of attention and compliments I revel in; the kind I dress for, the ones that are an acknowledgement of my embodiment and my ability to create unique ensembles.

But where else, and with what, would I wear them?

I spent many (MANY) painstaking (VERY PAINFUL) moments ensconced in envisioning additional circumstances that would justify the significant investment.

And I couldn’t.

Despite how creative I am, regardless of my visionary capabilities and in spite of how much of me just wanted to swipe my card and prance out with one of those adorable shopping bags, I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.

I saw them becoming a WATERFALL ITEM and, even worse, something that might claim a position on top of my closet, out of reach and only taken down occasionally; something that might garner resentment.

Resentment not just because I might not have many opportunities to wear them but resentment because they just don’t relate to my life the way they might have, or the way I might have been able to convince myself they would, even two years ago.

They were absurd; and yet absurdly amazing.

And as such, they would not have eased into any realistic position in my current wardrobe.

They wanted more than that from me.

They wanted attention on every level.

And I fell deeply in love with them for that.

I felt perfectly at home in them at that moment, ensconced in the glitz of Las Vegas, but I knew they would not be at home once I returned home.

Everyone in the store was on board with me purchasing them. There was a sheen of peer pressure to take the plunge and just splurge.

They are amazing!

They are so YOU!

Those shoes are high fashion!

It felt like a lot of noise. All of the words and thoughts reminded me of why I personally prefer to shop for myself ALONE.

And in the end, after a time-warp of 90 minutes spent in debate, I came to the decision that I would feel more powerful walking out of the store without that beautiful bag of shoes in hand.

Because sometimes when shopping (remember, it’s called shopping not buying), it’s about the things you buy as much as the things you don’t.

And please keep in mind, that whatever you bring into your life, what will serve as an extension of you and your energy, and either bring you levity and inspiration (or the opposite) – all of it needs to be aligned with who you are, who you are being and even who you are becoming.

But I find that in some situations, it’s best to create the space for something new. By not buying them, there’s room for something else that will truly serve me in my own transformation from someone who previously never thought twice about buying something that spoke to her on any level.

And so some of my purchases were not always level-headed.

Now I am realizing that in the work I do with others, and particularly in the work I am doing on myself, my own shifting, the conversation goes much deeper than those booties would have allowed me to go.

At that particular moment.

I am well aware that as proud fashionista and recovering shopaholic, those sparkly leopard open-toed booties might well haunt me.

But better that they do so from a distance rather than in physical form on a high shelf of my closet.

And maybe someday, after I daydream about them enough, I might proceed with bringing them into my life.

Because, you see, it’s about so much more than just the thing when it comes to style and our personal expression.

We get to decide. We get to choose what we buy, what we wear, who we are, the stories we are telling the world and ourselves.

And in those excruciating moments, I could not write a future for those sparkly leopard open-toed booties.

But I’m grateful for the experience of having tried them on and reveling in the beautiful brand Sarah Jessica Parker has created.

And I’m particularly thankful for the space that still exists in my closet and for feeling no remorse leaving the store empty-handed.

I could feel as I walked away that my bank account rejoiced and my soul breathed a sigh of relief that I’m no longer convincing myself that I am someone I am not.

I no longer need to hide, to create a façade behind anything.

The beautiful and the ugly, the joyful and the painful can all exist side-by-side.

And I will dance anywhere and everywhere no matter what is on my feet.

_______________________________________________________________________

Helena Grant is a Life Coach and Transformative Style Healer specializing in bringing the spiritual to the physical by helping women express themselves through clothing. She works virtually one-to-one with clients who are ready to re-shape the way they see themselves and design the lives they truly desire and deserve. Find out more by clicking HERE.

Embodied Goddess Solution

Embodied Goddess Solution

TheEmbodied GoddessSolution Refashion Your Life Starting with the Clothes You Already Have FLASH SALE JULY 24th through 28th Value $472 BOOK NOW $222 Welcome, Style Solution Seeker! Perhaps you are familiar with this phrase: I don’t know what to wear. These words can...
TENets: A Code for Living Life with Ease

TENets: A Code for Living Life with Ease

These “tenets” came to me as a proverbial download in March of 2018.

Mostly it’s advice I give myself – sometimes that is the best advice of all.

Presented in 4 parts:

ONE

1) (PL)EASE

2) BENEVOLENCE

3) HELP

4) HOME

5) RELISHES

6) CHANNEL

7) LEARN

8) SHARE

9) CELEBRATE

10) CAN

TWO

1) (PL)EASE – say it with ease

2) Open-hearted benevolence

3) Help others, and self, when needed and possible

4) Feels at home anywhere and helps others feel the same

5) Relishes earthly possessions but is not tied to them

6) Values health above all else

7) Views self as an open channel to give and receive love and light; the body is a temple, the home for the soul

8) Knows there is always more to learn and isn’t afraid to get “dirty” doing it

9) Looks at each day as a reason to celebrate

10) I ALWAYS KNOW I CAN (I never thought I couldn’t)

THREE

1) (PL)EASE – say it with ease; this word opens the world and literally makes everything easier – say it to others, say it to yourself.

2) Open-hearted benevolence – you ever know where you can do good or from where, or whom, good will be done to you.  Do good, be good but do what is best for you.

3) Help others, and self, when needed and possible – you never know who you can help or, conversely, who can help you.

4) Feels at home anywhere and helps others feel the same – observe your surroundings, assimilate and stand out with confidence; take care of those who feel less comfortable than you.

5) Relishes earthly possessions but is not tied to them – enjoys clothing, accessories, luxuries of all sorts, experiences, travel but nothing defines her or weighs her down. The saying holds weight here: you can’t take it with you so live life to the fullest NOW. Enjoy with joy.

6) Values health above all else – the body is a temple, the home for your soul. Worship it, love it and it will love you back.

7) Views self as an open channel to give, and receive, love and light

8) Knows there is always more to learn – education never ends; expansion is eternal.

9) Looks at each day as a reason to celebrate – everyday truly is your BIRTHDAY. There was no assurance you would wake up today and what if today is your final day on earth? Do you want to spend it denying who you are? What you can contribute

10) I ALWAYS KNOW I CAN – total confidence, no expectations, on her one schedule. I never thought I couldn’t

FOUR

1) (PL)EASE – this word opens the world, everything is easy when you open up Tom needing help. It’s easier to say thank you but please is eternally more profitable. EASE comes from saying PLEASE.

2) Open-hearted benevolence – you never know who you can help, you ever know who you can help, or conversely, who can help you. Everyone has something to teach us about the world, about ourselves. Keep an open heart, an open mind.

3) Help others, and self, when needed and possible – do good, be good but do what is best for you

4) Feels at home anywhere and helps others feel the same – observe your surroundings, assimilate and stand out with confidence; take care of those who feel less comfortable than you; build confidence in others and show that you are comfortable anywhere. LEAVE NO TRACE OTHER THAN ON THE HEARTS OF THOSE AROUND YOU.

5) Relishes earthly possessions but is not tied to them – enjoys clothing, accessories, luxuries of all sorts, experiences travel but nothing defines her or weighs her down. Experiences spirituality in the ritual of getting dressed and expressing individuality.

6) Views self as an open channel to give, and receive, love and light by valuing health above all else – the body is a temple, the home for your soul. Worship it, love it and it will love you back. If you don’t have your health, you have nothing; if you don’t have health, channels shut down.

7) Knows there is always more to learn – education never ends; expansion is eternal.

8) SHARE – express who you are and it will inspire others to do the same.

9) Looks at each day as a reason to celebrate – everyday truly is a BIRTHDAY

10) Says: I ALWAYS KNOW I CAN – total confidence, no expectations, on her own schedule. Positivity translation of: I never thought I couldn’t. Leave room for deciding when but always knowing you CAN if you decide you WILL.

Photography by Sonya Highfield

Pack like a ROCKSTAR

Pack like a ROCKSTAR

It’s a bit counter-intuitive but a small, well-planned suitcase gives you a plethora of options plus the ability to feel unhindered by your baggage.  Keep it to a carry-on and make sure everything you take with you is worthy of a place in your bag.

Remember this “packing zen” phrase:  

Large, heavy suitcase: struggle and forget things.

Small, manageable suitcase: forget nothing, wear everything.

5 Strategies for Feeling Fab No Matter Your Destination:

1)   Pack for 3 days – prepare for one hot, one cold, and one rainy day (apply as necessary).  What you need for 3 days is the same as what you require for 10 so focus on minimalism.  Align your itinerary with the weather and it helps to select a tonal palette of colors: choose a capsule of 3 base neutrals and two accent colors.  This will also aide you in accomplishing strategy #2.

2)   It’s a big PUZZLE – think of it as a game: each item needs to serve more than one purpose.  Lay it all out on the bed or the floor – walk through each day’s activities and envision the outfits.  Interchangeability is a plus i.e. a dress for evening becomes a dress for day; plays well with sneakers and heels.

3)   Fold & Roll – maximize space and minimize wrinkles by turning every item into a burrito-sized roll.  Stuff shoes with smaller items like socks and underwear.

4)   Prioritize – sometimes our imaginations are bigger than the suitcase; put the most important, must-have pieces in first so you don’t end up cramming the essentials in at the end.

5)   Travel Outfit – look nice for the best treatment but go for comfort.  Who do you think will get the upgrade? The woman in yoga pants and sneakers or the one in skinny jeans, ballet flats and a perfectly draped scarf?  Layers are key for fluctuating temperatures and en route is the best time to transport bulky items like sweaters, outwear and shoes.

BON VOYAGE!

Helena Grant is the founder of the personal styling company H.GrantStyle and creator of the online course BE YOUR OWN STYLIST.  She is on a mission to ensure every woman everywhere feels like a ROCKSTAR every day.

 

Packing List

Destination: Anywhere in the world

Duration: 3 days. 10 days or 3 weeks

Weather Preparedness: Hot, rainy, cold (30-70 degrees)

Important activities

      Touring

      Enjoying

      Exploring

      Dining

      Feeling awesome all the time

Style Itinerary:

Travel outfit

      Skinny jeans (dark wash or printed)

      Belt

      Tank top

      Lightweight sweater

      Leather jacket

      Moto boots

      Blanket scarf

Day 1 – Exploring, hiking

Morning: Athleisure

      Deconstructed flannel

      Printed leggings

      Tank

      Wide belt

      Sneakers

      Hat

      Sunglasses

Evening: Loungewear

      Jogger pants

      Tank

      Sweatshirt

      Ballet flats

OR

Evening: Out to Dinner

      Fitted Dress

      Leather leggings

      Ballet flats

      Vest or leather jacket or both layered together

Day 2 – Touring

Morning: Athleisure

      Long black leggings

      Sport tank

      Performance top or long cashmere sweater

      Mid-weight zipper jacket

      Sneakers

Evening: Dinner

      Distressed jeans

      Silk blouse

      Striped cashmere sweater for warmth

      Vest for added coziness

      Moto boots

Day 3: Shopping

Morning: polish so the shop clerks treat me well

      Printed travel jeans

      Striped long sleeve shirt

      Moto boots

      Skinny belt

Evening: Dinner at the bar

      Leather leggings

      Fitted dress

      Ballet flats

      Vest

OR

      Distressed jeans

      Cashmere sweater

      Moto boots

      Leather jacket

Travel outfit

      Printed jeans

      Tee shirt

      Flannel shirt tied at the waist

      Moto boots

      Leather jacket

 

Packing List:

Yoga/Athleisure clothes

      3 pairs of leggings

      Lounge pants

      4 Tank tops (for layering)

      Sports top (built-in bra)

      Sports bra

      Warm layer

      Vest

      Jacket

      Sneakers

      Socks (3-4 pairs)

      Baseball hat

Other

      2 pairs of jeans

      2 short sleeve tee shirts

      1 long sleeve tee shirt

      2 sweaters (wool/cashmere preferable)

      Ballet flats

      Blanket scarf (wrap yourself up on the plane!)

      Winter hat (beanie) or warm headband

      Underpinnings

      Water bottle

      Sunblock

      Sunglasses

      Gloves

      Dop kit (hair, skin and tooth care)

      Make-up bag (for headshots)

      Chargers – phone/ipad/computer

Photography by Sonya Highfield

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