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Using a mantra to stay mindful

Man·tra /ˈmantrə/
noun: mantra; plural noun: mantras
A word or sound repeated to aid concentration in meditation; a Vedic hymn.

I use a mantra to guide and inspire me. I like to think of it as a daily message guiding my path, a place to return to and encourage me to move forward. Typically when we want to create change in our life, we use goals or resolutions to keep us on track. However, goals and resolutions require structure and planning. They require lists and when I fail to check off the boxes on the lists, I am constantly faced with disappointment. When I work with a personal mantra, I have more freedom. My mantra gently guides me to what I want to manifest. Sometimes it is a word or phrase that I need in a pivotal moment in my life or sometimes my mantra will change based on circumstance. At the beginning of every year, I always begin with a new mantra to open the door to all the possibilities I can manifest.

As educators, creating a mantra at the start of the school year...

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LETTING GO OF PERFECTIONISM AS A TEACHER

 
My yoga practice has taught me the importance of letting go every time I step on my mat. When I first began to practice yoga, my focus was on perfecting the poses. After a while though, my practice would not progress. I was burnt out, frustrated, and unkind with myself when I could not master the poses perfectly. I discovered I needed to let go of all my preconceived notions, my perceived limitations, and perfectionism in order to grow in my yoga practice.
 
Yoga has shown me that I am always a work in progress, but once I stopped letting my inner perfectionist guide my path, I was able to let go and grow tremendously. I found perspective, grace and surrender.
 
As teachers, it is easy to fall into this same pattern. You may spend hours after a long day in the classroom trying to create a perfect lesson plan. You may tell yourself you cannot move on to your other projects even though you could have easily stopped hours ago at “good enough”....
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COVID-19: A Story of Hope

mental health Mar 24, 2020

 

The COVID-19 pandemic crashed down on me like a fierce mid-afternoon thunderstorm.  It was unexpected, jarring and left me soaking wet in disbelief. It seemed that no matter where I turned, the rain surrounded me. At first I accepted the rain, then I refused it, then I briefly tricked myself into using playfulness to temporarily deny the reality of what was happening. But then I was forced (quite literally) into shelter and forced to fall on my knees and surrender to the storm that has still yet to pass.

Every day this week, I wake up in hope that it will stop raining—but I look and only see flooding all around me. I pray for relief—but I am only met with uncertainty. The despair creeps in and I can no longer fight the rain. But even in dark hours when the rain is beating down on me, I force myself to find my inner voice of hope. Sometimes, I hear a little whisper that tells me that I will survive. I hear the whisper in the dark hours and it reminds me...

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Embracing The Uncertainty

mental health Mar 18, 2020

The universe is calling to reorganize your life.  Your life has a funny way of revealing what next steps of growth are required of you. It is hard to change the path you have been on because to change your course of direction is a call to walk into the unknown. The unknown place is like dropping you off into the woods with no compass to guide you. When you arrive at this unknown place you look outside of yourself, for a trail carved into the earth by somebody else. This unconscious urge to find a forged path will always be your initial response to crisis but this is not the task at hand, the task is to discover your own course that includes physical, mental and emotional skills that will serve you now and far beyond.

It’s time to stop looking around to see if someone else has figured it out. It’s time to turn inward and discover that it is your job to figure out your own strength and aptitude to move forward.

“You might be tempted to avoid the messiness of...

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A letter to my fears

Uncategorized Mar 15, 2020

A letter to my fear...

Your mind is telling you to stay calm but your gut is telling you that something terrible is happening. It’s hard to find a compromise between these two places.

As homosapiens we struggle to hold the balance between good and bad. We want to decide, is this going to ok or is this going to be bad? It’s important to notice that inclination to “choose” a side.

But be careful if you do because attaching to either one disqualifies the other and therefore disqualifies the gut feelings and the minds reactions. Instead allow yourself to have vastly different feelings and thoughts at any time.

Accept your negative feelings and thoughts and also your positive ones. Let yourself feel the spectrum of the human emotions.

No one said this would be easy.

No one said you will have all of the right answers.

You are allowed to worry, be afraid and also find reassurance through hope and love.

It’s ok to see this time as an opportunity to reset...

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Motherhood + Entrepreneurship

entrepeneur Jun 30, 2019

Really, there is no difference between growing a baby and growing a business. Like motherhood, I had no control over timing, pace or creation. What I was growing had a mind of it’s own. I had no idea what was happening inside of me and each month as it grew, I was thrilled. In that time, I was growing ideas and dreaming of possibilities. I was full of excitement and worry, fear, promise and doubt.

Today I celebrate the conception of Simply Bee, an idea that grew within me one year ago today. Little did I know then, how quickly it would be born and the wonderful people it would bring together.

One year ago at the Himalayan Institute, I found clarity and direction at a yoga retreat that allowed me to have a silent mind and listen to a heart that needed to speak.

I discovered how simple it was to “just bee me” with no fear, shame, judgement or static noise from the outside world.

Here is where I began to nurture baby bee.


Like motherhood I had no idea what was...

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Awaken To Your Needs

Throughout the gentle yoga practice, I stopped and journaled. Usually I jotted down a question and continue to move and process. It’s a form of meditation that I’ve learned to use to help with my busy ‘hamster wheel mind.’ My question was, “what is needed?” As I moved and engaged with the women and girls in the room, I had my answer! All I had to do was put my two conscious words together “NEED” and “AWAKE”.

I’ve been lucky in my life. I’ve been surrounded by strong women in my life who always showed up real, unscripted and fallible.

Yesterday at the Mother + Daughter Workshop was no different. I was again surrounded by a group of strong women and girls who showed up for each other in a way that is vulnerable and real. Often times, we moms will shy away from a difficult conversation, like body image and self-care, because the discomfort is too much. Sometimes it’s our own discomfort but quite often,...

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Body Image Isn't About The Body Afterall

eating disorder Jun 30, 2019

We soon realize that although our intentions are pure and we aim to feel better, we inevitably further our fear because we cannot correct our fear through physical changes, we correct our fear by sitting with it calmly and leaning into it’s message. Within the message of fear is a whisper asking you to be just a little bit stronger than you were the moment before.

“Along the way, we’ve lost the importance of noticing how emotions are translated into the body”

We manifest our anxieties and fears into physical dissatisfaction. To otherwise experience our emotions without the concrete view of our body we wouldn’t know where to look. It’s a strange thing to observe an emotion when it has no view point, such as an arm, leg or nose. The oddness of describing an emotion is most obvious when we sit and try to observe it. Most often we fill the spaces with ideas and theories for ‘why’ we feel something rather than just noticing it. The question...

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3 Ways Setting Goals Can Harm Us

When we set goals without being thoughtful, we lose is the opportunity to pivot, adjust and change our course when it's no longer working for us. What we get is burnt out and dissatisfaction. If we begin to see life as a series of processes and goals we soon realize that the attention should go on the 99% and let the 1% be whatever is meant to bee.

If we could stop and think about our time on this planet, we'll soon realize that we spend 99% of our time working towards a goal or dream, only to meet that goal and start a whole new process again. What I find ironic is that we should appreciate the 'process' because ultimately that's what really matters. Without a process, there is not product. However, I have found myself over and over again teaching this idea to highly successful people. And honestly, I lose sight of it myself more times than what I like to admit. It's a simple concept that most of us don't learn and (in my opinion) causes marked distress. Most times it's because we...

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5 Tips to Surviving the Holidays with an Eating Disorder

eating disorder Jun 30, 2019

The holidays are an exciting, beautiful time of friends, family, celebration and peace. For someone struggling with or in recovery from an eating disorder, however, it can be painful, anxious, depressing and sometimes unbearable. For 15 years, I dreaded November-January, but I’ve learned (the hard way) some things to maybe make it a little easier this year:

1.Don’t feel guilty for taking time for yourself (if it’s healthy)

If you’re like me, your family has big gatherings revolved around food, eating and drinking. More often than not, the first thing a family comments on is how you look. “OMG you’re so thin, so you look amazing!” or “You’ve put on a little weight, huh?” It can be exhausting, triggering, and reaching for ED symptoms is the easiest way out. I spent most holiday parties hiding upstairs and throwing up whatever I ate because I needed a release and some time alone.

Take a moment (or an hour!) to yourself, listen...

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