You are in relationship to everything in your life.
Yes, I am talking about the relationship
with your spouse / partner, parents, children, co-workers,
but can you stretch your definition of relationships?
What is your relationship to food, sex, money, drugs, alcohol?
Do you find yourself using these vices to
avoid what is happening in the present moment?
How do you relate to life's transitions?
If it feels like the ground is sometimes falling beneath you
as you navigate changes in jobs, arrival of new borns,
confront the inevitable fate of aging…
perhaps learning how you interact with these changes can be useful.
How do you perceive your moods, feelings and thoughts?
Do you wish you didn't have certain beliefs and cling to others?
How can you begin to get some distance in order to observe and then know
how to take action?
As you can see you are in relationship to all of your life.
Learning who you are and how you respond is the first place
Deepening your understanding of the role your partner
or (fill in the blank_________) is the other half of the equation.
Through inquiry and insight, I will help you begin to
understand the story of your life,
develop more capacity to tolerate the unpredictable
and settle into what is.
Working together through a path of
knowledge, acceptance, compassion and more,
I am here to support your awakening
to be the person
you were meant to be
.... beyond symptoms and suffering.
I welcome the opportunity to get to know
who you are
and see how I can be of
Written when I was a health coach.
I am Darshana.
The first thing I want to tell you is that I am NOT a nutritionist, food
coach or Registered Dietian. I have NO title when it comes to do with food.
Yes, I have been a women's health coach for the last 18 years. I taught
cooking classes, educated women about whole foods, gave health food
store tours and all that stuff about food BUT, this is gonna sound harsh,
I don't care what you eat.
I mean, I do, but that is not my mission or what we are up to in the food
For me food has been the thorn in my side and the biggest gift in my life.
You see if I had not realized that I could use food, or rather my relationship
to food as a door way into my spiritual life, I would still be eating boxes
of cereal, baking brownies or cookies and eating the whole batch in one
sitting. I think I might have been on prescription drugs to manage my digestive
and mental health. I bet I would of still been sneaking food, holding food at
buffet events, binging like crazy and then starving myself or exercising
like crazy. Every January I would still be bargaining with the spirits that
this year I swear I would stick to my diet, I would be dieting like crazy before
bikini season or before my college reunion.
You get the point?
What I am trying to say is I would still be hooked into main stream
culture and messaging that I was not enough exactly the way I am and
I would keep trying to be something that I am not. I would keep trying to
have a body I was not meant to have and I would be trying over and over
and over again to fit into what the magazines say instead of fitting into the
skin I live in.
But 18 years ago I got off that train and instead I realized that my crazy
making, abusive, oppressive, obsession with food was the exact vehicle
that could help me KNOW myself.
As I turned TOWARD my relationship to food and all the fucked up ways
I treated myself. Yes I just used the F word, I could answer a deeper calling
I had, to have freedom from food obsession.
I wanted to be free from my impulsive and mindless behaviors with food.
I wanted to be free from feeling like a slave to what the world told me what
to eat, look like and behave like and instead learn to listen to myself.
What I really got in touch with as I opened the door to food being my
spiritual path was that I was being suffercated by oppression.
I was an oppressed woman.
I am not saying I am a victim, but let's face it ladies, women have been
oppressed for centuries, and being told what to eat and how to look
are two of the main ways women oppression continues to get played
out in the world.
So every time you think a thought that you are (fill in the blank with
a not so nice thing you say to yourself), or every time you look at a
magazine or other woman and compare yourself or every time you beat
yourself up for not sticking to your food plan, stop for a minute and say...
OH this (may be) part of the oppression.
All of these ways I hurt myself I just wanted to run away. I had a fantasy of
moving to an ashram (well, I did the for awhile). I just wanted to escape
my life. But, no I had to face myself and it was in the moment that I
realized that FOOD was my practice. It was my yoga mat, my meditation cushion.
And it has taught be more about myself than, well almost, anything.
It's important for me to say that this is not one of these programs where
I just use my own personal story to help inspire you. I have been a
student of yoga, meditation, psychology and personal growth for
18+ years. You can read about my credentials HERE but heres what
I want you to know....
I used the teachings I have been so blessed to receive from my many
spiritual teachers and I applied them to every bite I took, every glance in
the mirror, every trip to the health food store, every restaurant I went to,
every time I got on the scale (or stopped getting on the scale). I applied
those tools to the thoughts I had about myself, when it came to food and
my body and I became liberated from emotional eating.
And yes its true I not longer obsess about food, in the same way.
Does it still haunt me? Not much, but yes, it creeps in. But thats the nature
of the mind, my friend.
It's not what the mind does. It's what YOU do with your mind that makes
the biggest changes in your self.
So what I want you to know is that as important as it is to find food that
nourishes your body and keeps you healthy, I am here to guide you to
feed your soul.
If you would like to partake in the food freedom programs.
CLICK HERE for more details.
Feed your Soul. Nourish your Body.
Break-ups are hard.
No one, as far as I can tell,
loves a break-up.
But, just because your
primary relationship is ending
does not mean that
your world has to end.
Endings happen and learning to not only cope, but accept and move on is
essential for your own growth as a human being.
I understand that you may need to learn how to navigate and work through
resentments, built up guilt, shame and anger.
Yes the air needs to be cleared.
But once it has cleared or while its happening, I hope to support you in
asking yourself what is right relationship with this person?
What does that mean?
I believe every person comes into our lives for some reason. We don't
always understand what that reason is at first but if we sit back and ask
we can surely find out.
Part of the reason we don't know what someones role is in our life is because
of our cultures confusion with love, sex and intimacy.
I mean let's face it, sometimes we meet someone and before we know it
we are sleeping with and/or marrying them and perhaps we should of just
been friends or even as simple as a one night stand.
Navigating what the right relationship is for two people can be challenging
but it can be one of the most rewarding things we can do.
If we choose to navigate these (sometimes rocky) waters and stay with our
feelings, express our needs and make conscious choices together, you may
find that this person, in the right relationship to you, can be one of
the most significant people in your life.
I want to help you do that so you experiencing ease, acceptance and understanding
of your (ex) partner.
And I especially want to support you if there are kids involved.
If thats the case, perhaps you want to explore your next steps in a co-parenting plan.
Repair can happen. Trust can be to rebuilt. And you can live a new life
without having to reject the old one.
A “failed bulimic,” that’s what I called myself. I wanted to be a bulimic so badly, but I couldn’t do it. I was an expert at the binge part but could never quite figure out the purge part.
And no one knew because by day I was this health fanatic who ate the “perfect diet” and by night I spent way to many hours with Ben and Jerry. (No joke my parents owned 2 franchises and we had tons in our freezer).
As a result I became a yo-yo dieter and I would use diets to drop 20 pounds in 2 weeks or exercise like crazy. Morning after morning I would wake up and the first thought that would go through my head was is this going to be a fat day or skinny day. And you know how I found out the answer. I ran to the scale- this external source. IT told me the answer. Yet the irony was that when I did achieve my weight goal, I still was not happy.
The battle with food went on for nearly 2 decades.
I was developing health concerns like irregular menses, constipation, aches, pains and intense mood swings. Intellectually I knew I was eating over emotions but I didn't know how to stop it.
Around the time when my struggle with food was at it's peak I was living in NYC working as a musical theatre actress. To stay in shape for my theatre jobs, and because I was obsessed with my weight, I was at the gym constantly. One day I went to take my normal step class but it wasn't happening. Instead a woman sat in the front of the room and told us to roll out our purple sticky mat. I did as I was told and little did I know that this class was about to change my life. I had stumbled upon my first yoga class.
When not at the gym or on a gig, I waited tables between acting jobs. When I was working in the restaurant the other waitresses and I would sneak food into the bathroom between orders.
One night one of the waitresses mentioned that she had taken the chocolate fudge layer cake into the third bathroom stall. “You can have some,” she said.That was it. I was gone. From that moment on my mind was on one thing—chocolate cake! When my manager told me I had a break, I dashed to the bathroom.
There I was in the 3rd bathroom stall on a 5-minute break tearing through a piece of cake. I was about half finished with the cake when I stopped mid bite. I opened the bathroom stall and looked at myself in the mirror & something happened.
"Who is this person?", I asked myself.
This morning during my yoga I felt self-empowered, calm and connected, especially to my body, which historically had been the culprit of my suffering. I was learning and experiencing presence, consciousness and the real art of loving myself from the inside out. I was beginning to shift my need for approval from external sources (the scale) to inner confidence (liking my body and myself from the inside).
Yet here I was demolishing a cake, relating only to my very loud critic and acting only from my impulsive actions. I walked home from the restaurant that night in a daze. I sat for hours at my kitchen table.
Then I had an insight...
Take yoga off the mat and into the kitchen.
Translated to—practice awareness with food.
It suddenly seemed so obvious. Eating, or rather over-eating, was the one consistent place I went unconscious. In contrast, during yoga I felt vibrant and alive...... present.
What if I could apply that level of awareness to my relationship to food?
In that exact moment I set a new goal: To bring the skills of mindfulness and compassion to my relationship to food and my body.
On some level I was on my way, I had already begun to practice eating an organic whole foods diet but I needed something else...
the missing ingredients...presence, consciousness, awareness, mindfulness and inquiry.
Of course there were many ups and downs over the next 17 years, but now I was on a path. A path others had walked before. To shift my relationship to food and my body with awareness.
I now saw my struggles with food as the gifts of my life. As crazy as it sounds I thanked the universe for giving me this hardship.
Everyone comes into the world with something to overcome. Difficulty with food and my body were the cards I was dealt. And stumbling upon the yoga class at my gym was the first step to put me on a journey beyond my wildest dreams.
With the tools of meditation, yoga and mindfulness I now had a daily practice to keep me in alignment with who I wanted to be in the world. A liberated lady. This freedom took me by surprise, as did my decision to change careers from actress to health coach. I was learning skills that helped me feed my soul and nourish my body, and I wanted that for other women.
The battle with food might not be your struggle. It might be another addiction, depression, relationships, work...
And although you might perceive it as the thorn in your side, I invite you to investigate something else. Perhaps this is YOUR gift.
If you are interested in learning to feed your soul and nourish your body, I invite you to contact me. I look forward to hearing your story and sharing the ways I can support you to find your own path towards your liberation.