You may be wondering why there wasn’t a show last week. Well, let me tell you. You may know I’ve been dealing with post-concussive syndrome, but then I got the flu, and my period all at the same time! So I thought it’s time to practice what I preach and take it easy and focus on taking care of myself.
Now that I’m back though, I wanted to answer some questions. The Cravings Cleanse is going so well, and I wanted to take some time to focus on questions from those folks and others who have gotten in touch with me.
So today we’re talking about a range of topics, from rewriting your story about your feelings about your body, to transitioning out of veganism back to meat eating, and the importance of self care.
Thanks. I was just telling everyone that I totally scrapped my talk, and this is the only slide that I’m going to be using. Yes! I like that I … I think of myself as the nice, juicy filling in between Brené Brown and Amy Schumer. While I’m going to be energetically speaking to the women in the audience, I am also speaking to and for the men in the audience. I love men. I have my man in the audience. Bob, my fiancé is here.
I want to talk about why women in leadership as an idea is important. What the problems are for more of us getting into leadership. How we can honor the feminine. I’m going to take you through some exercises, so you might want to put your stuff down. It’ll only take a minute for us to get to that point, but you’re going to be standing up, I warn you.
I was a professional vegan for quite a long time. Towards the beginning of my professional vegan-ism, which by the way, was the right choice. My body needed it. It healed me. It was fantastic. Then at the beginning of this adventure into food and healing, I met this guy … I picked him up in a bar, I’ll be honest. We fell in love, and we ended up making a movie together called Super Size Me. Did anybody see Super Size Me? Okay.
I was the vegan chef girlfriend in the background rolling her eyes as my then boyfriend ate nothing but McDonald’s for a month, and got very very sick. That movie allowed us … It was like lightening in a bottle. We went on Oprah. We went to the Oscars. It was fantastic. I became professionally vegan, and wrote 3 vegan cook books, and had this brand as a vegan expert. Work great for me in my mid 20s. Then I got to my mid 30s.
I don’t know if anybody told you this, but your body changes as you get older. I was also going through a divorce from said co-creator of Super Size Me. Had a little boy. A lot of stress. My body started to fall apart again. So this diet that had helped me in my mid 20s was now not working so well. My hormones were a disaster. I was exhausted, I was anemic, and I started craving meat. Yay! (laughs) Yes. We’ll have bacon later.
In marketing, I believe they call what happened next a “Shit Show.” Where I had to thank God for Brené Brown’s book Daring Greatly. t was literally my bible as I was going through this struggle, trying to come to terms with the fact that I was now secretly eating meat, and hocking my 3 vegan cook books. What I began to realize was that what I was hiding was a lot of food shame and body shame, that what I needed as a human being had changed, and that didn’t make me a bad person. I had to learn to listen to my body. This is where this whole next 8 minutes is going.
When we listen to our bodies, whether you’re male or female, or somewhere in between, or outside of, it doesn’t matter. Your body is what makes you you. When I talk about women in leadership, we have to address the weird gorilla elephant in the room. We’re talking about physical and chemical differences. Yes, the female body is what makes female leadership different, and sometimes complicated. We have to learn how to honor that, and listen to it.
I’m going to ask you all to stand up. As I talk with you, I want you all to do what I call the “Wonder Woman Pose.” The reason why we’re doing this … It works for men and for women. You just want your chest a little bit out, and your head a little bit raised. We’re going to do this for about 2 minutes. Why we’re doing this is because this is actually raising your testosterone. For women, that’s especially powerful. There’s a whole Ted Talk on this. I did not invent this, but I use it and I share it, with women especially.
When we’re in a leadership role, or trying to step into leadership, we have trouble with the balance between competence and confidence. We’re very competent. We know what we’re talking about. We’re smart, we’re skilled, we have tools, we have experience, but we don’t feel confident enough to interrupt. To say our opinion. To lead the charge. I recommend doing this “Wonder Woman” “Super Hero” pose, for a couple of minute before every meeting, before every tough conversation.
Skip directly to chapter 8 in my book, Women, Food, and Desire to talk more about this. It also helps with the female libido. Which I also believe is a very powerful aspect of being a female leader. It’s really acknowledging and honoring all aspects of who you are. All right, we’ve just hit 2 minutes. Perfect. Sit down. I wish I could do a spit test and show you all, and test your testosterone levels, and show you how powerful that was. Do that before you have your next meeting, before you have your next big conversation. You’re going to stand up again in a minute, so don’t get your notes out.
What was challenging for me changing my brand in full view of the world, saying, “Hey guys, I’m no longer vegan.” and watching half of my newsletter list unsubscribe, and having thousands of people flame me online. Lots, and lots, and lots, and lots, and lots of negative comments. Death threats, because I was now eating meat to help heal my physical imbalances.
It’s very challenging for us to be authentic when, as women, our number 1 secret shame, as Brené Brown pointed out yesterday, is body and appearance shame. This helps up ameliorate that a little bit. But how do we begin to actually listen to our bodies, and feel that authenticity, as Bruno was so beautifully pointing out. How do we listen? How do we be authentic? How do you hear this inside what’s going on, when we women, one of our strengths is also our Achilles heel?
We’re so good at figuring out what everybody else needs. We are psychic … Well, we think we’re psychic. Sometimes we are, and sometimes we’re just mind reading and going crazy places, but we read the energy of a room so well. We know what other people need before they know it themselves, but all of that gets in the way of us hearing our own truth. I want to take you through another exercise. Go ahead and stand up again.
We’re going a little bit more saucy. I want you to put your hands on your hips. We’re just going to do a little figure 8 with your hips. This is just loosening up this part of your body. I know, you guys are having to turn sideways. I appreciate you playing al- It’s okay. You’re doing great. Looks good. We tend to hold a lot of tension right here. We suck it in, we don’t want anything flapping over the side of anywhere. But there’s so much happening in here, especially in the female body. It’s your digestive system. It’s your emotional brain. Your gut brain has as many neurotransmitters as the brain in your head does.
When we are tight there, when we have this scourge of digestive issues … IBS, gluten intolerance, leaky gut … We have so much stress here, we need to start loosening this part of our body up, and stop hating and holding in our physical self so much. Helping to loosen up that physical shame that Brené Brown was talking about, it really takes getting into your body. All right, go ahead and sit down again. Thank you for playing along.
How can we consistently check in with ourselves, check in with our bodies? Listening to our cravings might actually be one avenue into it. That’s what I go into further into this … Again, Women, Food, and Desire, it’s the book, it’s in the book store, go get it, it’s awesome. There you go. Listening to our bodies is actually done by listening to your cravings. What does your body want?
Brené talks about this again in her new book, Rising Strong. I feel like I’m hocking her book more than I am mine. That’s okay. She talks about learning to sit with your emotions. Sit with your physical self. As a way of being authentic. How do you do that? How do you sit with and listen to … I’ve tried meditation. Believe me, I’m not that good at it. Sitting in silence just makes me crazy, but I can listen to what my body is asking for. That’s why I take people through a lot of physical exercises, and I talk about play and pleasure a lot.
We humans learn when we play. When we take the judgement out of it, it’s about having fun and being engaged, and seeing what happens next. It’s like one big improv class. When you can be physically in your body, and listen to yourself, loosen up your gut a bit, and really hear what your physical self is saying. A gut feeling about someone, nervous knots about something, butterflies in your stomach. That’s all information. That’s all ways that your body is talking to you. Again, the feminine in leadership has been downplayed. Emotion in leadership, listening to yourself, which is your body, has been downplayed and set aside.
I think that it’s time that we start listening more to that, and honoring our cravings, and following our desires. Even if it’s for chocolate. Even if it’s for the mocha frappa-latta-chino at 3:00 every day. Whatever it is that you want, get curious. Ask, “What is my body wanting right now? Am I having an emotion? Am I nervous?” There seems to be no place for that in business, in marketing. But marketing is about story, right? It’s about authenticity. We have to be able to do that for ourselves first, if we’re going to be able to do that for the company, or the product that we represent.
I think as marketers, as sales people, it’s our responsibility to be solid in ourselves, and honor what it is that we need, so that we can honestly come to someone and say, “This is what I believe. This is what I want. Do you want to engage with me about this?” And they believe you when you’ve done that work … When you’ve done that inquiry. You’re way more attractive and interesting to be with and talk with, and develop a relationship with when you have that confidence … When you have that play and sass in your energy. People respond to it. I’m so glad to have had a chance to talk with you all. Thank you so much.
While Starbucks rolls out their super-sugary Pumpkin Spice Latte, I’ve gotten inspired to create a whole bunch of new ways to enjoy this warming, cozy spice blend…without the sugar hangover.
I decided to make my own blend of Pumpkin Spice from scratch because I don’t have any room in my spice cabinet for one more bottle:
I am also enjoying way more anti-inflammatory foods as I continue to recover from my concussion over a month ago.
Cinnamon, allspice, ginger, and cloves are all anti-inflammatory, which makes this recipe great for pain relief, PMS, and any other inflammatory conditions!
(NOTE: just because a Pumpkin Spice Latte also has these great spices in it, does NOT mean it’s an anti-inflammatory food. In fact, the high sugar content makes it one of the most inflammatory beverages you can drink. If you’re trying to cool pain, headaches, or other inflammatory skin or join issues, stay off the sugar.)
Here’s my Homemade Pumpkin Spice Recipe, which I use so often now I just keep it in a little bowl on my counter for handy sprinkling:
⅓ cup ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon freshly ground nutmeg (tastes so much sweeter, and makes the kitchen smell great when you grate it on a microplane)
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1-½ teaspoons ground allspice
Now I have my homemade spice blend, and enjoy the flavors all day long, so I can get my spice on without spending $5 at Starbucks…or drinking a candy bar’s worth of sugar.
Sprinkle on Honey Crisp Apple slices. I like my apples cold, and keep them in the refrigerator until I slice them and sprinkle with apple pie spice.
Whisk into Coconut Milk with Stevia. 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk, 1 teaspoon spice mix, 2 drops liquid stevia. Heat and serve.
Sprinkle on Oatmeal. You could use simple cinnamon, but why not jazz it up a bit?
Mix into Teeccino, a great caffeine-free herbal coffee. Since my concussion last month, I’ve been avoiding caffeine to give my brain a break for some much needed healing. The anti-inflammatory spices and caffeine break are just what the doctor ordered.
Enjoy the beautiful, spicy flavors, and curl up with a great book…and of course, a kitten:
Alright ladies. I know it’s hard being a woman sometimes, and I want to help make it easier. So today we’re talking about periods! Because, let’s be honest, periods are a big part of what make us ladies.
To help us tackle this topic, I’m talking to certified health coach Nicole Jardim, creator of Fix Your Period, a series of programs designed to help women reclaim their hormonal health in a fun way. I know, fun AND hormones! Yay!
Nicole is really addressing the root causes of what’s going on in your body and your mind during your cycle. Listen in to hear us talk about the pill, headaches, PMS, genetically modified foods, plus my new lightning round of questions!
Alright, crave bears, time for a concussion update: I have post-concussive syndrome. What does it mean? It means even though I’m three weeks past my concussion, I’m still feeling the symptoms. Turns out it’s not uncommon, and it can last for weeks or months and occasionally even years. So I’ve been taking it super easy and eating a very non-inflammatory diet.
As I’m living with this, I’ve created this list on a sticky note of things that I wanted to do every day to help me stay on track and feel better. Things like taking a shower, drinking my glass of water, and going on nature walks.
All of this has me thinking about the value of creating lists. They can be so helpful – they offer a great reminder of things that we want to do, and they provide that satisfying feeling of checking something off. So this week I’m talking about why I think we should all make and use lists more often to help us tackle our goals.
Also, the Cravings Cleanse is starting soon! This will be my last live Cravings Cleanse, so I really hope you’ll join me. We start on October 14th – next week! I’m so excited.
Alright, crave bears I’ll admit: I am a bonified hippie born to hippie parents. And yet there are some aspects of the new age hippie culture that always felt a little icky to me, like female empowerment, divine feminine, and sister circles.
But over the years, I’ve come to term with these nouveau new age beliefs, and I was lucky enough to start following Sara Avant Stover. She made me feel like I had a community in my spirituality with nature, and gave me a language for those beliefs. She seeks to present this new model of beliefs that reflects the power and the wisdom that’s really unique to our feminine path.
Sara’s first book, The Way of the Happy Woman, came out in 2011, but today I’m excited to talk about her new book, The Book of SHE. This book celebrates all that it means to be a woman, and talks about embracing our full feminine spiritual awakening.
Trust me, Sara is an empowering woman, and I think you’ll like what she has to say.
Breaking up is hard to do, isn’t it crave bears? Our relationships with other people matter. The people in your life influence how you speak, how you eat, how you act, and how you treat yourself! And ending a relationship can be really hard. I know my divorce was really hard on my psyche.
Today I’m talking with Katherine Woodward Thomas, author of one of my favorite books, Calling in “The One”. Her new book, Conscious Uncoupling, is all about how to live happily even after. I wish I had had this book during my divorce – it would have made my own untangling so much easier!
Our relationship status and the joy or sadness in our relationship can have a huge impact on our health and well being, our stress levels, and our emotional eating. This episode is perfect to listen to if you are going through a breakup or have ever been through a breakup (which is most of us!).
I also want you to know about the upcoming Cravings Cleanse! This will be the last time I am coaching this program live (but don’t worry, it will still be available). Join me as we heal your body with food while healing your relationship with food in this 8-week program!
Last week I was talking with a client I’ll call Jen.
Jen wants to get rid of her bloating, which bothers her daily, and has a bigger life’s craving to feel confident and comfortable in her body.
I asked her to describe how she eats, and when she eats.
Here’s what her meal plan looks like, which is just like so many women I work with:
Wake up as late as possible, then eat in 5 minutes or on the way to work.
Eat lunch at her desk, then snack throughout the afternoon.
Get home starving, then quickly eat in order to get on with other things…
“So,” I asked, “would I be right in saying that you only spend about 30 minutes actually eating every day?”
“Yes,” that sounds about right,” said Jen.
See, we spend so much time worrying and obsessing about food, and our bodies, but we don’t really take time to enjoy eating.
When we eat too quickly, on the run, at our desks, in the car, or secretly, with the lights off, we are in a state of panic, stress, and unease.
Here’s what I know to be true: you can either be stressed, or you can digest.
When you eat slowly, with ease, enjoying your food, taking breaths, chewing completely, savoring, your body can digest. Your body has time to tell you when it’s full. Your stomach can handle the food coming its way.
We are in such a state or rush and panic, with almost every single meal,
that we neither notice how our body feels, nor do we have a chance to digest.
This leads to stomach pain, bloating, poor digestion, leaky gut, and overeating.
I gave Jen an assignment: spend 15-20 minutes eating each meal, and don’t do it alone.
Food should be one of the best things about being alive, and enjoyed with other people. Set the table. Light a candle. Invite a friend to lunch, go to a park or cafe for breakfast, eat outside as often as possible. Take a real lunch break. (It is the law, after all!)
This is the first step in changing your digestion and the impact your digestive health has on your cravings, even before you change what you eat.
She’s on it, and looking forward to feeling different with food, and enjoying it with others.
Eating real meals, like a person who cares enough about her body and her life to take the time, is the first step in transforming your relationship with food, your energy, and digestion.
I told Jen about the positive psychology technique, savoring. It’s the first lesson I teach in the Cravings Cleanse + Mindset Makeover. Savoring is a way of fully feeling, noticing, and loving, food, your body, each moment, and your live.
It’s a powerful tool, that allows you to actually be in the moment, appreciate your body, slow down, and enjoy your life…and only one of the mindset tools I’ll share with you in the Cravings Cleanse, which starts 10/7.
Jen is on her way to a new way of eating, and I want that for you.
See, it doesn’t matter what you eat, if you’re always eating in a state of stress, your body and relationship with her, and food, won’t change.