Coming home from the highest high on a very transformational few weeks in Nicaragua I have landed back in Calgary. What is landing even harder is the reality of our -20 degree weather and the winter blues that come along with it. I keep getting messages from my guests from my SRF Vacations retreat expressing how they are trying to harness the evolution they experienced on the Vacation in Nicaragua in their lives back in our cold ass tundra that is Calgary. I totally echo those efforts. Every morning during our retreat a natural 5:00-5:30 am wake up occurred followed by delicious coffee staring at the waves waiting for the perfect peak in the tide to invite us in for a Dawn Patrol surf session. If the tides weren't in our favour we'd start our day with a run on the beach or something to get our hearts pumping and sweat pouring. The rest of the day was about connecting inward, connecting with others, laughter, great nourishment, relaxation and then more movement and a restful sleep. I dropped 9 lbs in 16 days... had at least 2 alcoholic beverages per day, one dessert every night and consumed more than I normally would back home. I felt stronger than ever, more clear in my mind, connected to my self.... more than I've felt in years. I was living in joy... everyday. The best part about life in Nicaragua was the sheer simplicity of it all. The simplicity of life there is something that I truly believe left all of us in this euphoric state.

I arrived home late Sunday night and Monday morning I woke up at 5:00 am thinking that I could just grab my coffee and stroll down to scope the waves. A very sad and disappointing feeling settled in. Instead I grabbed my computer and a coffee and reverted back into the way of life here... the "grind". I literally didn't leave my house a day and a half avoiding feeling the sub temperatures on my skin with my computer in front of me. I made my lists, I answered all the emails, I drummed up more business, grind, grind, grind. I wasn't feeling very full even though I was productive... interesting. The next morning I attempted to connect back to a body of water so I went swimming for an hour.... the next day I pulled my SURFSET board out to do a workout but nothing was quite working. I missed the joy that the salty water facilitated in my life. I missed the simplicity.

Realizing that I've quickly exited that whole living in joy thing I needed to change my perspective and do some good thought work before all the benefits that came out of Nicaragua would disappear.

Reflecting back to what was so magical about Nicaragua, here are the simple things that you and I can try to make some magic in our lives happen as we are landlocked:

  1. Try to start your day with something that creates happiness or some form of joy. Maybe read a chapter of a book, maybe move your body, maybe go for a walk, maybe journal. Find what makes you happy and start your day off in that vibration and mindset.
  2. There is always time in your day. I really don't care if you are the CEO or VP of a company or a mother of 3 kids, we are all busy. Time is within reach, you need to choose to make it a priority for YOU. Fill that time with something that inspires you. A form of movement, art, music, reading, meditation, connecting with a friend. Take time to recharge that battery of yours with something that inspires you. Doesn't need to be an hour long ordeal, start small and add time as you start to ease into this new found glory of gifting yourself time.
  3. Fuel your body only when you're hungry and do it without distraction. This might mean not eating breakfast until 10:00 am.... might be a scary thought but listen to the needs of your body, tune in and turn everything else around you off.
  4. Rest. Us urban dwellers we experience a TON of stimulation we might not even be aware of. Traffic noise, busy streets, sirens, crowded transit cars, line ups, the noise in our minds created by our society, our cell phones and all the distractions in it. Then of course our specific life demands. It's exhausting. City folk need to prioritize the rest and restoration of the body more than anyone. Your life will not end if you don't open your computer or scroll through social media after dinner time. Your body and mind will thank you if you retire to bed early. Find time to breathe in moments of chaos and business.

Many of my executive clients have asked me to create this weight loss program specifically for busy women executives with a family. A program that will promote happiness within self, a healthier and stronger body while still being everyone to everyone. I was that busy CEO who ate well and worked out for a good 1-2 hours 6 days a week but worked up to 14 hours a day. I was the heaviest I had been and couldn't figure out why the weight wasn't coming off. The more I tried to control everything the harder it became to drop a pound. The more complex I made my routines the more distorted and disconnected I felt.

Nicaragua gave me the opportunity to let go of all the noise and distractions, all the things I couldn't control in my life that were causing anxiety and stress, loosened up my routine and just gave me space to tune inward to what I needed. I realized, life isn't complicated, it's simple. BOOM. There goes 9 lbs in 16 days. I'm not saying go to Nicaragua, (although you should and try one of our Vacations) but try the four basic practices I listed above and see if in a month something changes for you. If not, you will be a more connected, more rested and happier version of you. It's a win win.

I hope those of you from my SRF Vacations who are reading this get something out of it and all my other readers I would love to see if these basic tips help create newfound space and happiness in your lives.

Until next time,