We’ve traveled the world in search of finding and sustaining balance: this ever-elusive concept that so many of us want to have but likewise have no idea where to start. Through decades of soul-searching and entrepreneurship in the wellness space, we’ve discovered that balance is completely attainable, and like most things related to wellness, it all starts from within.
Our journey started in 2002 when we each made a major life decision to leave the corporate world for acupuncture careers. We had a passion to practice alternative, traditional medicine in lieu of a westernized approach to standardized medicine. We spent the next four years of school focusing not only on acupuncture but the mind-body connection, understanding how each component that makes up who we are (mind, emotions, spiritual relationships, physical presence) all work together to have an effect on our overall state of being. What we eat affects our minds and the physical energy that we have during the day; what we focus our attention on has an effect on how well we feel physically. Think about it: have you ever replayed a negative conversation in your head for hours after the fact and felt physically sick from it? It’s all connected.
Energy is elemental. It’s what drives our senses, our state of mind, our emotional health, and our physical health.
Even though we’ve learned about the relationship between the mind and body, and try our hardest to maintain balance between the two, we are realistic and want you to know that it’s all a growth process. And even your vegan, yogi, meditative wellness guru friend started somewhere: at the beginning. So, whether you’re searching for ways to bring balance into your life or want to reinvigorate some daily rituals, we’ve put together things that we do to help keep our energy in balance and call us back when it’s not balance.
Marla’s Go-To Self-Care List:
Eating habits. I did some research and found that eating every two to three hours maintains body processes and keeps my metabolism intact, since it really slows down in your 50s! I typically eat within one hour of waking and eat a smaller portion of protein and healthy carbs every two to three hours until dinner.
Read. I do my best to read a personal development or business book in the morning and thrillers in the evening (I usually have two books going at a time). No matter what time I get into bed, I read to quiet my mind and let go of the things that may disrupt me from a good night’s sleep. If you’re looking for some book recs, Reese Witherspoon’s book club suggestions have been fun to read.
Balance time. The past year and a half has been full of family time at home as well as weekly family Zoom nights—where we discuss articles we have recently read or shows we are binging; sometimes we just chat while we cook. This time is really important for me to feel connected, but I also practice taking time for just me, whether going for a walk without my phone or just being alone in general. There’s no right or wrong way to balance the two, it’s more about allowing myself to take the time I need, while also making sure to stay connected with loved ones.
Be in the moment. When I was in acupuncture school we had a saying that ‘upset is optional’. It took me a while to really get it but it’s now become part of my daily practice. Essentially, it’s knowing that I cannot change the past nor predict the future, but I can live in the moment and choose how I respond. I also do my best to focus on the positive and invite positive things into my life.
Meditate. My family and I got trained in Transcendental Meditation about six years ago, and I take time to meditate daily. The stillness of meditation brings me back to the present moment and helps me with stress, sleep, focus, and so much more.
Tori’s Go-To Self-Care List:
Quiet my mind. I am a firm believer that my thoughts are a big contributor to my suffering, and by stopping thought we can stop suffering and become more open to the abundance of the universe (which is so much easier said than done). I’ve dabbled in just about every type of meditation out there, and the one practice I have kept up with for many years now, like Marla, is Transcendental Meditation. It’s ideally practiced twice a day for 20 minutes at a time, and I understand the value of that, but I celebrate myself when I get in one session a day.
Spend time in nature. NIH has done studies that prove the human connection to earth is beneficial for sleep, stress, chronic pain, and more. I make it a point to walk barefoot, work in my garden, or sit on the ground every day—ensuring my bare feet or hands touch the ground.
Acknowledge emotions. I have lived most of my life thinking I need a quick fix to get out of an emotional or even physical rut, but have learned that really doesn’t exist. Instead, I work on really feeling my emotions and letting them ride out, versus trying to force a negative emotion into a positive one. Often I practice grounding by feeling these emotions in my body, focusing on the emotion as a physical sensation, and then allowing it to dissipate and move on.
Exercise. I’ve never been very motivated to exercise, and truthfully it’s still a struggle. I didn’t grow up playing sports and really don’t like the physical feeling of exhausting my muscles. However, I understand the value of pushing my body and challenging it to improve and have seen results from better sleep and digestion to improved mood and mental sharpness. My go-to apps are GLO for yoga and The Class by Taryn Toomey.
Eat well. I believe that food is either medicine or poison. It is the most significant thing we can do for overall health, wellness, and happiness. Instead of counting calories or macros, I track my food’s nutrient density and ensure it’s fueling my body and brain. Honestly, this should probably be #1 on this list.
These are just some ways that we stay balanced in our daily lives but it’s important to remember that everyone’s path is unique, and every journey begins in the same place: within.
It’s inevitable that the mind-body connection will be lost at times and those hiccups are the reminder to utilize the tools we have to get in balance again. We often tell our clients to embrace those hiccups because they serve to keep us on track and remind us that we’re human. Don’t beat yourself up if you miss a meditation or if it takes you a few months to finish a book. What matters is that your intentions feed your practice, and if you slip up, you can always start again tomorrow. We’re honored to join you on your path to personal radiance.
From our energy to yours,