How to make black bean burgers that won't fall apart on you

vegetarian back bean burger recipe, gluten free

I’ve made a LOT of veggie burger recipes and black bean burger recipes, and many of them have fallen apart on me as soon as I get them up to my mouth. Some, even before I plate them.

So this recipe is WORTH SHARING, in my opinion! I’m still testing the specific measurements of this recipe, but the secret really is in the simplicity of this recipe. No need to overcomplicate it. This is as easy as it gets when it comes to have a good old stand by black bean burger recipe. This recipe also happens to be a gluten free veggie burger recipe which is not always easy to find.

I eyeball the ingredients most days and it still turns out great - the key is keeping an eye on that consistency and combining well.

The ingredients can be slightly tweaked, but here are the basics!

Easy Black Bean Quinoa Burgers

  • 3(ish) cups of steamed organic quinoa, tricolored or other

  • 1/2 cup(ish) minced bell pepper and onion (onion optional)

  • 2 Tbs olive oil (add to quinoa and pepper mixture when steaming to add flavor)

  • pinch of salt (also added to the steaming quinoa)

  • 21 salute seasoning from Trader Joes (add to taste, I usually do a few generous shakes.)

  • 1 can organic black beans, well rinsed and drained

  • 2 organic eggs

  • pinch of black pepper and sea salt (optional, to taste)

  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free panko breadcrumbs or more as needed for consistency

  • 1 more Tbs olive oil (for heating on med/low in the pan)

After steaming the quinoa per package directions (I steam the veggies in there with the quinoa) I scoop it into a large bowl for mixing. Add the 2 eggs, the 21 salute seasoning, and some extra salt and pepper if desired, to taste. Then begin adding the Gfree panko breadcrumbs. Mix together until egg is well combined. Using a potato masher or a food processor on low, continue to combine the ingredients until they are well combined and the beans are visibly more mashed and combined in, not just still hanging out in their… you know… normal bean shape. Mash ‘em in there so they stay together. Watch the consistency, as I mention in the video, watch for it to begin to hold together, continue to combine together until you’re confident you can form the “dough” into a burger pattie shape with your hands.

With a skillet preheated on med/low with a bit of extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil, add patties to pan and brown on each side. This is where you’ll really see the patties solidify to form that great shape.

Cool slightly and serve warm with lettuce leaves, or a gluten free bun and some pickles and potato wedges. (yum.) I’d also say go ahead and squirt some organic ketchup on there. Or better yet, fresh tomato slices!

Enjoy, and let me know what you think of this vegetarian black bean burger recipe!

What I Do When I Experience Feelings of "Overwhelm" Setting In

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There was a moment today where I felt the familiar feeling of extreme overwhelms tart to well up inside me again. You know what I mean - your heart races, your gut turns, you want to cry from exhaustion but you can’t work up the tears - it’s just all too much sometimes. Maybe you even bury your face in your hands and wince. The to-do list lengthens in your mind as you run through everything that requires your time and attention.

If these feelings come up often for you, you overcommit yourself often, or you feel as if life keeps “happening to you”, there may be some deeper level healing work we can do one on one, so be sure to reach out when you’ve finished reading this post.

But for now, I want to walk you through what I do to heal and work through overwhelm in the moment.

Basic Steps to Reversing the Onset of Overwhelm

First, when you first feel your heart rate rise, stop and ask yourself “what’s required of me *this moment*”? Are these things that are overwhelming me so greatly in this moment, are they due right now at this very second?

If the answer is no (which it usually is no!) then you likely have a moment to spare and stop and breathe.

Stop and tune into your body’s physical response in the moment. For me, today, I discovered my body was very tired and worn down from what we’d done the past few days. Family events, weddings, normal work schedules, parenting, packing for a move, and late nights writing course material for my upcoming membership. I was tired.

I ran through all those things I had experienced and or accomplished in the past few days. It had been a lot and it had been good. I was proud of myself. So I stopped to acknowledge that I was tired, fatigued, and was in need of a break.

Then I checked the calendar.

Awesome. Clear night tonight.

So instead of filling it with additional tasks, which I might typically do, I decided that in order to get through the next few weeks (which were the cause of my overwhelm!) I was going to need a little TLC tonight.

I tuned in and asked myself (asked my body) what would feel best tonight. A night out with a friend? A night in? My body resonated with how great a simple warm bath, a face mask, freshly painted nails a cup of tea and getting to bed early would feel.

Done! Date with myself, scheduled.

The Result

Doing this would better equip me to get up and face tomorrow’s challenges, the upcoming responsibilities I knew would be mine to manage. Instantly the feelings of overwhelm were greatly diminished, even close to gone in that moment. I knew what I had to do in this day, in this moment. I was going to rest up and give my body the care it was asking for to get move forward.

The Body’s Naturally Wise Internal Messaging System

Often, overwhelm is simply the body’s physical response to tell you to STOP! Slow down, tune in, rest, recharge. If your body is responding with overwhelm or signaling that something is “too much”, guess what… it probably IS! Your body is incredibly wise. Take a moment to listen to it so it doesn’t have to find alternative ways to get your attention.

Ive been through too many times in my life where I continually ignored my body’s internal messaging system. Feeling overwhelmed? I self sabotaged with panic. Feeling exhausted? I’d reach for caffeine.

Disregard your body’s simple, profound messaging system long enough, and your body may even do what I did, which is start to physically shut things down to get your attention.

A simple alarm going off in your internal messaging system that something is “overwhelming” or “too much”, simply take a second to ask your body what it needs in that moment. Ask your mind and soul what is needed. Often, its some version of rest. So whatever version of rest sounds BEST to you in the moment, do that.

If this seems too simple, I challenge you to try it.

It has taken time for me to love and appreciate myself, who I am, and how I move through life enough to get to the point where now this feels natural to me to walk through this with myself.

If it feels foreign to you, uncomfortable, or like it doesn’t work the first few times you try it, keep at it.

Always begin with a few deep breaths. Because oxygen truly is anxiety’s greatest physical antidote. And from there, ask yourself what’s required of you *this moment*. Because often the things that are overwhelming us are projections into the future and fears of the unknowns or of how we are going to “get through”. You must bring yourself back to this present moment. Stand in the grass if you can (this is a grounding practice!). Tune into your body and ask it what it needs right now, and act accordingly. Showing this level of love and care to yourself in a moment of overwhelm can drastically shift what happens next, and the rest of your day will likely thank you for taking that moment.

Have you walked through these steps or steps similar to these before in a moment of overcoming overwhelm? Let me know in the comments!

How to feel happier and be more grounded on a daily basis (and get out of your own way!)

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This is one of my favorite topics.

Because often, for most of us, even if we are going through the most difficult of situations, there are some basic tools we can have in our tool box that can help us feel more grounded, and over all just feel HAPPIER on a daily basis, no matter what’s going on around us.

I loved recording this episode because this list of tips I offer I so simple, there’s no prep, no big program, just 8 simple yet powerful ways to check in with yourself on how you’re feeling, if you want to and are ready to feel better about your life right now, RIGHT HERE, right where you’re at!

So without further ado, sign in to listen to this list of 8 check-in style tools you can fit into your happiness toolbox right now to feel happier and more grounded today.

Oars and Alps Natural Cosmetic Products Review

oars and alps target product review

Oars and Alps is a new brand of natural mens care (unisex) products and is now available at Target!

Their outdoorsy, nature-inspired brand appeals to the adventurous nature in all of us, and because their products are so neutrally branded, I couldn’t wait to try them out.

I’m not always a very flowery person when it comes to cosmetics. I prefer very simple products that are sourced as close to the earth as possible and still high performers.

I picked up a few products at my local Twin Cities Target to try out for you guys so I could recommend (or not!) and so here’s the verdict:

The Favorites:

The Oars and Alps deodorant is AMAZING. I love how it glides on, i don’t smell at all - and I’ve tried a lot of natural deodorants, and many of them I really love and appreciate. I’ve even attempted making my own, and I also love doing this, but I’d score Oars and Alps deodorant very high because it’s small and quick to throw in my gym bag, and performs so incredibly well. The scents are neutral, subtle, and take me on a little mental adventure every time I swipe it on.

The Charcoal face wash feels AMAZING on the face, and seems to cleanse very nicely! It pairs well when I follow the cleanse with one of my favorite moisturizing oils (this one and this one).

The exfoliating bar soap - although the price point at $14 per bar is a bit much for me to make it a shower staple, the exfoliating effect and the lovely way I feel when I use it are no joke. Seriously, love the way my skin feels with this soap. I get so excited about using for my early morning wake up shower or to help soothe and destress my skin after a long day.

Other Products:

I picked up the cooling eye cream as well as the moisturizer as well, and although not overly impressed by the results of either, I think they would work very well for many people within the Oars and Alps Market.

I personally don’t always use under eye products like this one, but I personally know people who do, and love the feeling of a chilled applicator like this, so I’d recommend they try this product! But it didn’t light me up inside.

The moisturizer was nice, but since oil cleansing and using oil to moisturize my skin, I’m afraid you’ll never see me going back to a cream moisturizer. But if a cream moisturizer is something you or your partner is accustomed to, this one is light and soft and feels great.

But… they’re men’s products?

Yep! And if sharing toiletries with your partner isn’t a habit you have yet, Oars and Alps is making it a possibility for you. I’d consider these some of my favorite unisex products I’ve ever tried, besides some of my favorite DIY or handmade alternatives!

Want to try them?

Already tried them?

How did you like these products?

Time to let go of the holiday guilt and create a new kind of health reset

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Okay, health minded mamas, it’s time to let go of any ounce of guilt you may be experiencing over what you ate during the holidays (or all those greens we didn’t eat!). You feel me?

I’m writing this on January 2nd, 2019 has officially begun. This is the day most people begin their new year’s resolutions, hit the gym, and the local juice bar, and plan their weight loss meal plans. These are all GREAT things. You and I both know that.

But you and I don’t have to let our faithful dedication to our health and wellness take away from the love and great times spent with family and friends during the holidays.

My Goal as Your Health Coach

As a health coach, my goal is to help break the idea in the health industry that the picture of health looks like a green smoothie touting body builder taking photos on the ocean-side (although that is amazing, and kudos if that’s you), but I want to help you celebrate the health journey, and that means embracing the moment right now, and where you’re at.

I want to help you be the healthiest you RIGHT NOW, today. And you can be, even BEFORE you reach your weight loss goals, or any goals at all. Let’s discuss how…

What Matters Most to our Health

Our primary sources of nourishment don’t just come from the food we eat, although that’s of course deeply important. Our primary sources of nourishment come through our ability to rest, the positive and supportive relationships we have, how much we enjoy our career, and if we are able to live out our passions. Our health depends on how we wake up and approach every new day, how we navigate challenges, and how we treat ourselves and talk to ourselves and care for ourselves day in and day out.

The food we eat is intrinsically important. Our body reproduces its cells from the energy and compounds in the very food we eat. We literally are what we eat, as our cells rebuild. But, we are also more than our physical body.

In the health industry we are daily discovering that the mind body connection is more complex than we’ve ever thought before. Your are, essentially, more than just what you eat.

We are what we eat, and we are what we think, and we are what we believe… and so on.

Creating a health reset today - a mental shift

So, my friends, give yourself permission to stop feeling guilty or stressed about how you should be eating. Is this important? YES. Absolutely. And let’s discuss that together and find the plan that works perfectly for you. But even more important to me, today, is that you and I treat ourselves with kindness, show up for the people we love, see challenges as opportunity, step out of toxic relationships, step into new hobbies that feed us, unplug, pray, run, dance, read, and sleep… all these beautiful things and more that support our health first and foremost.

If you’re feeling guilt from the holidays and are stressing about how to get healthy in 2019, stop and do these two things:

  • express deep gratitude for the loved ones you spent time with over the holidays, and express deep gratitude to yourself for showing up and loving the people close to you in your life

  • decide that today you will be kind to yourself, and love yourself where you are at right now, and that whatever steps you take toward better health and wellness today will be to beautifully support your body and soul because you’re worth it and you’re already enough.

Want to chat more about your health and wellness in 2019? Are you looking for a holistic approach that helps you make sense of all the important facets in your life that support your health and wellness like your family, your career, your sleep habits, your hobbies, your workouts, and your food? Let’s connect!

Why Losing Weight Doesn't Have to be on your New Years Resolution List this year

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Are you tired of writing “lose weight” on your list of new year’s resolutions?

I know I am.

Whether you’re trying to lose weight for a specific event in your life, meet a personal goal, or simply feel healthier, I’d like to unpack why losing weight does NOT have to be on your list this year.

Of course being a healthy weight is important for our health and longevity, but let’s check our mindset.

Wanting to lose weight is a very noble goal, however, when I make a goal to lose weight, the following emotions and actions almost always accompany it:

  • poor view of self and where I’m currently at

  • wanting to look better for others, no matter the cost to me

  • unhealthy means of losing weight, unsustainable habits

  • excessive stress or obsessing about how I look

  • low self-respect

Again, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to feel comfortable in your own skin - but my friend, let’s learn to do that TODAY! Exactly where we’re at right now.

Why losing weight will most definitely not be on my resolution list this year.

Would I mind shedding a few pounds? Nope I wouldn’t, let’s me honest!

But with my history with food and emotional health, I’m not going there this year.

Here’s what IS on my resolution list!

I’ve created a list of goals for the year for both my personal life and my career. And then I circled the two or three that would really be the core goals, and then I circled the one that was definitely going to be the game changer.

I continue to prioritize emotional health year after year after year, because it’’s the single most important thing to my true health and happiness. Physical health ALWAYS accompanies this, thanks to the mind-body connection!

Looking at it objectively, losing weight won’t be the real game changer. But all the things you do to adjust your lifestyle to GET THERE will be the real game changers.

Think about it - what will you do if your goal is losing weight? Hopefully your action plan would look something like this, if you’re doing things in a good healthy way:

  • Eat fewer processed foods

  • Eat less meat, more fruits and vegetables

  • Get enough Sleep

  • Workout 3x per week

  • Get a walk in every morning

  • Positive self-talk

  • Routine Spiritual Practice

  • A health social life and relationships

  • Putting my self care first

Wow- those are the real game changers!

A New Way to Look at Your New Year Resolution for 2019 for a Healthier You

focus on loving yourself through every single day.

If I focus on “weight loss” as my goal, and pin up posters of my inspiration, spend countless hours at the gym, and suffer through hard core diets, I essentially may be internally telling myself “I’m not good enough, pretty enough, thin enough, or strong enough UNTIL I reach my goal.” Then even worse, if we don’t reach that goal, well… that’s it. We really AREN’T good enough. Because we never made it there. We never lost all the weight or reached our strength goal, whatever your goal was.

If you make emotional health your resolve this year, weight loss may be a secondary benefit that naturally comes with achieving better mental health! You might just be surprised. When we take care of our mind, our body has the freedom to exit that constant state of stress most of us find ourselves in. Give your body the respect and freedom it needs this year to support you.

Most of the action steps you’d take to lose weight remain the same - additional exercise, fewer processed food, enough sleep - but your whole mindset will feel more supportive, more gentle, and loving on yourself, and you find yourself able to “win” at your goal on a daily basis.

With a weight loss goal, you won’t see the numbers on the scale budge on a daily basis. It can be hard to stay motivated.

When your goal is to take care of yourself and truly respect yourself and focus on your emotional health, you can experience the momentum of a win every single day. Because every day your mindset is one of love and care toward yourself and others, you’ve won.

The weight might even start coming off on its own because it knows it doesn’t have to help you survive.

The Emotional Health/Physical Health Connection and your Weight

My weight, I’ve learned, is often directly linked to my stress level, and my acceptance of myself.

Have you heard that when you diet by calorie restriction, your body goes into starvation mode essential, and tries to store away fat on purpose because it is wise, and it thinks its experiencing a famine! So it’s trying to help you survive and stay alive through this tough season.

Even if you’re not calorie restricting, a similar thing happens when your body is under extreme mental or physical stress. It senses danger, and signals to the body to hold on to additional resources to keep you alive.

I love that my body does that, I certainly cannot fault it for being a wise advocate for me. It knows what its doing. It’s a brilliant divine supercomputer. It’s freaking amazing. But here’s the thing - I often force myself into stressful situations where I create an environment in which my body feels uncomfortable, unsafe, and forced into stress fight or flight mode. Most of us in the health and wellness minded world are familiar with the fight or flight stress response.

If youre not, essentially, it’s a phrase to describe how the human body is designed to respond when under stress - we will either physically enter flight mode, as if running away from a ferocious tiger, or we will enter fight mode, be filled with adrenaline, and get locked into this constant fight back mode - probably against the ferocious man eating tiger. As primal beings, these are the facts!

This used to bother me - I didn’t like being reminded I was a primal being. But now, these days, I LOVE it. I thoroughly embrace it. It really helps adjust my expectations of my body, realize how incredibly wise it really is, and helps me remember to treat it with love and respect, and give it a whole lot of extra grace.

So this year, give your body a break, and treat your mind, body, and soul with tender-loving care. You are amazing. Your body is wise, your mind is brilliant, and your soul is sacred. Give yourself space to flourish.

The weight may just come off on its own and adjust to support your body and exactly what it needs!

Want to work with a Health Coach in 2019? A Health Coach can help identify your game changing goals, stick with the process, and cultivate lasting change that drastically impacts your life and health!

My Favorite Healthy Christmas Cookie Recipes I'm Making with my Kids

Healthy Christmas Cookie Recipes

What batches of healthy Christmas cookies does a health coach whip up for the family festivities?

These days you can search any type of Christmas cookie recipe based on whatever your lifestyle or dietary needs might be and get a lineup of scrumptious options.

I’m going to share with you my FAVORITE holiday cookie recipes that I’ve made in my home the last few years, and am making again this year too! (this week, as a matter of fact!)

My #1 Healthy Christmas Cookie Draft Pick:

These little gingerbread cutouts from minimalist baker. I have so much love for Minimalist Baker. So much love. And I make this recipe with my kids every year. They’re so gooey and perfectly nutty and sweet at the same time. Even if I only make one recipe each year, this will be the one I make. Non-negotiable.

My #2 Healthy Christmas Cookie Draft Pick:

These sugar cookies, also from Minimalist Baker, because her recipes are some of my favorites, are a great, easy sugar cookie recipe, but what really makes me love this recipe is her take on the frosting, and even the healthy alternative to food coloring.

Amazing Runner Ups we might make this year:

Raw Gingerbread Cookie Balls

Keto Sugar Cookies

3-Ingredient No Bake Peanut Butter Dipped Cookies

which recipe cite will you make this year?

Have you already made your cookies this year? Do you have any fun baking traditions?

Winterized Kale Salad Recipe

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It’s winter, but that doesn’t mean we put away salads for the season!

There are ways to “warm up” your typical thoughts around salads, and still enjoy them raw!

Kale is an absolute powerhouse. We all know this, right?

It helps our blood and organs detox, brightens our skin, and provides us with otherwise tough to get vitamins like vitamin a, c, e, and k and folate and phosphorous, and more. It’s essential, just like your other dark leafy greens.

But for the LONGEST time I didn’t know how to prepare kale so it wasn’t… well… bitter, rough and somewhat disgusting.

Now, I enjoy it steamed, in a smoothie finely chopped and mixed into dishes, juiced, and… massaged.

This salad below uses this last method to soften the kale and make it easy to chew and enjoy!

How to Make

First, de-vein your kale. You don’t want the woody stem of your kale to be in this salad.

Then finely chop.

And wash. You can wash first, but I often find it’s easier to wash it after it’s chopped up. I chop it finely so it’s easy to eat!

**I typically wash my produce in a bowl of cold water with a cup of white vinegar.

thoroughly rinse and pat dry.

Drizzle a little olive oil, about 2 Tablespoons if you’re using an entire bunch of kale, and in a very large bowl with plenty of room, start working the kale with your hands or - massaging it! Do this for a few minutes. You’ll find the kale will begin to release it’s juices and soften quite a bit! Once you’re happy with the soft texture of the kale, I typically massage it for about 5 minutes, then add the rest of your favorite salad toppings.

My favorite toppings are:

  • red onion (sweet and tangy!)

  • something earthy and crunchy like slivered almonds or sunflower seeds

  • a little red wine vinegar for extra tang and flavor

  • salt and pepper because it makes everything better (I use a dash of pink Himalayan salt)

  • and something creamy, a healthy fat like fresh, diced or sliced avocado!


This doesn’t have to only be a winter salad. Trust me, you can have it any time, but I find it’s an AMAZINGLY complimentary side to just about any warm winter dish I might serve up. It’s also perfect as a stand-alone lunch if you wanted to add a protein on the side!

This would be a great side dish to serve up during the holidays or for your Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner!

Have you tried massaging kale before? Is this a technique you’ve heard of? I didn’t know about this technique after even YEARS of healthy eating, so don’t worry if you’ve never heard of it, you’re not alone!

A List of Tips for a Healthier more Mindful Holiday

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I know the holidays can get VERY stressful for some of us, and for even more of us, we may even find ourselves “tripping over ourselves” trying to keep up with busy schedules, gatherings, events, baking, friends, and travel.

Every year it seems I notice the shift in people’s mindset in my community - we start getting more and more irritable the closer it gets to Christmas.

Call it materialism, call it hustle, call it whatever you want, but it’s definitely can negatively affect our attitudes.

Here are a few tips to help you get through the Holidays with ease this year.

Tips for Taking Care of Your Health During the Holidays:

  • Keep things simple

  • Eat warm foods, especially vegetables

  • Reduce sugar

  • Enjoy your herbs

  • Get plenty of sleep!

  • And I know it’s warm beverage season, but remember to drink enough water and watch out for dehydration!

  • Get enough sunshine… if you live in a cold climate like me, grab your parka!

  • Show more and more love in big, new ways, both to yourself and to those around you!

Tips for Taking Care of your Home During the Holidays

  • Keep it tidy

  • Keep decor simple, if this helps you out!

  • Focus on your entry way, even if that’s the only portion you decorate, get a wreath and a holiday rug and boom! Christmas decor done.

  • Grab these holiday scented hand-poured scented candles from Acacia Accents!

Tips for Caring for your Emotional and Mental Health during the holidays

  • Love well and show love often

  • Rest Up, be sure to get your sleep

  • Take your Vitamin D and get plenty of sunshine

  • Don’t sacrifice your health for extra holiday treats, but allow yourself to enjoy your favorites when you can!

  • If the Holiday season brings up extra difficult emotions for you, get support as soon as you can.

What did I miss? Let me know in the comments what you’re doing this year to stay healthy, keep things simple, and take the best care of yourself you possibly can!

My Free Gift to You…

“Restoring the holidays: 4 ways to enjoy a simpler, more mindful holiday”

If you enjoyed this list and it gave you a few good ideas, be sure to sign up to watch my free mini series, sign up below! It might help you gain some clarity as you map our your holiday season and create a plan for making the most of it!

Take 30 Minutes out of your day and mindfully prep yourself for the upcoming holidays, getting clear on what you want and need to get out of it this year…

In my free mini series, I take you through 5 short videos that share a bit more on a few of these topics! In this mini series we dive into …

  • Identify key stress points that might be holding us back from truly enjoying the holidays

  • set our intentions for how we TRULY want to feel and act this holiday season

  • Shake off unhelpful expectations we might be placing on ourselves, or any level of perfectionism we may be dealing with

  • Preparing an action plan along with our loved ones, that will help us fill the holidays with only what is essential and helpful, and supports our overall goals and values surrounding the holiday season!

Ready to sign up and watch the series right now? I’ll meet you over there! Grab your pen, a notepad, your fuzzy slippers, and your favorite holiday drink and let’s get going!

How to deal with Regrets and Setbacks and move forward in confidence

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Have you recently experienced a some regrets and setbacks? Or maybe even something in your life you perceived as an absolute failure?

I’m going to quick throw this out there - I don’t really believe in failures. At least never in the pure sense of the word. We are always learning from our experiences, so I don’t really believe there’s any such thing as a pure failure.

However, regrets and setbacks are unfortunately a part of life we can’t really avoid.

So let’s chat about them, because odds are if I’ve had one recently, and we are all human, you’ve probably experienced one recently too!

Whether you’re experiencing a regret or a setback with your physical health, mental or emotional health, your spiritual practice, your career, or your family and relationships… there are some key tools we can all employ to help accept these times, and know how to move forward in confidence.

Realizing our Freedom

Recently I have been reading the Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte. It’s an amazing book for anyone who considers themselves an entrepreneur or a go-getter in following their careers and passions and talents.

But right away in the beginning of the book Danielle explains a time in her life where she was experiencing one of her biggest setbacks/regrets/presumed failures of her life to date.

A friend calmly reminded her as she was painfully processing what she would do next “You’re free-er than you think you are.”

This single quote stuck out to me as if the words were raising off the page to my heart. I wrote it down on a sticky note and stuck it where I’d see it constantly for the next week.

You see, I struggle with feelings of being trapped often. Maybe you do too! Maybe it’s my wildly creative soul, maybe it’s because I’m a dreamer to the fullest dimension, but I constantly finding myself pushing to extend my horizons. And yet, what I find, is that most of my limitations are pure figments of my imagination!

I’m like that ant on the sidewalk. Have you ever drawn a circle out of chalk around an ant on the sidewalk? He’ll go crazy. He’ll get to the edge of the chalk and he won’t cross over because he thinks there’s a border there. But there isn’t. (It’s kind of insensitive, I wouldn’t recommend doing it, but it’s a fascinating example of what I’m talking about here!).

I imagine barriers in my life and start making up excuses to move forward like “People will stop taking me seriously if I do___”, or “If I do ____ it’s just too vulnerable. People will see the true me and they won’t want to stick around.” or “People will just think I’m a joke. They might laugh at me, scoff, or talk about me behind their backs…”

If you can relate with me, maybe that quote will resonate with you like it did with me.

Or maybe a quote like this one:

Fears Are Paper Tigers.
— Amelia Earhart

Because I’d venture to say, most of us are afraid to move on from perceived failures, regrets, and setbacks, because we are afraid of making the same mistakes again.

Would you agree? I know it’s true in my life.

But if you’re ready to MOVE ON but you feel stuck in the past, or unable to move past your fears of failure or thoughts about where you’ve been, let me just remind you that you are FREE.

You and I are sometimes a lot like that ant. We just have to realize, we can walk right through those barriers to the other side where growth and expansion can really flourish us.

So let’s walk through some steps and ideas.

Real vs. Unreal

One of the first action steps you can take to overcome your fears and to step outside of regret, setbacks, and failures is to take inventory of your thoughts. When you have a demoralizing or depressing thought about what just transpired or your current situation, take that thought at face value for what it is. Is this thought REALLY true about me? Or am I just perceiving that it is?

For example, this past year when I was still working web design and social media management, I had a client experience that was less than optimal. It was the first “failure” I felt as a designer. It was bad. Or at least I was perceiving it to be bad. I definitely made some mistakes in the process for sure. But my thoughts were consumed with “That’s it. I’m a bad designer.” Oh, okay, so forget the fact that I had a large number of successful, joyful design projects under my belt! Nope, didn’t matter at that moment, I was depressed and had fully succumbed to the fact that I had failed epic-ally! (see that fake barrier I just put up for myself right there?)

Well, the first thing I had to do was step out of my thoughts and take inventory of them. My thoughts were trying to protect me, “don’t go back out there! It’s scary!” my thoughts screamed at me.

But I had to simply acknowledge that my thoughts were simply not reality, and that many other factors were involved in that setback. I could move on knowing that I was still a good designer, and I could move on to step two… what did I learn?

The Epic Learning Experience

I honestly believe this: that there really are no failures. Life is a beautiful thing, and sometimes it gets really uncomfortable. But even in these moments where we experience perceived failure, epic setbacks, regrets over life, we have the divine privilege to be able to first bust out of the chaos of our thoughts and take inventory on what’s really reality, get our feet firmly planted back on the ground, realize our place in the world, and then start jotting down all the things we learned from that experience!

Pretty amazing privilege, right? We truly are free-er than we think we are, and it’s amazing.

So let’s take an action step! Consider making a list. What did you learn from this painful experience? Be honest with yourself. As soon as you start writing, you may feel your spirits lifting.

Here’s an example. Things I learned from my design experience that I perceived a failure:

  • I need a better communication system in place with my clients.

  • I need keep all my notes in one place so I don’t lose any of them.

  • Be more careful of that friendship vs client line in the future! Keep it more professional.


Yeah. Especially that last one. Did you get that? That would have really helped prevent most of the problems I encountered with that situation.

Your list will look different from mine. But make sure you are kind with yourself, generous with yourself, give yourself grace… be honest, but be objective. Remember, we already distinguished which of our thoughts were actual reality and which have been simply trying to sabbatoge us.

Here’s a shameless plug! Bring a health coach alongside you in the process if you need to, to help support your emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical health along the process as you grow and stretch into the future and this new version of you! Coaches have saved my life. I have epic respect for each and every coach and mentor I’ve had the honor of sitting with, and grateful for the introspective questions they’ve helped me ask myself.

Types of Setbacks & Preparing Your Toolbox

We all experience setbacks. My example here of my perceived “designers fail” was a minor setback in career. It seemed huge to me then, but now I see it for what it is - just a spec on the roadmap of my life. We could talk about setbacks all day long. They’re part of life. But in the end, this is what they will look like, mere specs on the map.

You might have been the healthiest version of yourself a few years ago, and then, well… life happened. Because that’s how it goes, right?

You may have felt things in your career were humming along as planned, but now you feel absolutely stuck.

Setbacks happen all the time in our lives. The key is, knowing how to gather a toolbox of things to help you maintain your emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual stamina throughout life, in spite of these fears, regrets, and setbacks.

I am a health coach because being a coach-ee has helped me be able to navigate life with a steadier gaze. I know who I am, I know my place in the world, and I have a tool box that I’ve created for myself so that I know what to do when things in life try to set me back or sink me.

I can stay a-float because I have a curated list of tools I can utilize at any time to assess where I’m at and know what to do next.

It’s a very powerful thing.

A Note From You in Three Years…

The beauty is, we don’t have to stay locked into regret mode, or even fear mode. You’re free. There’s more to you than that. The best of you is still yet to come if you’re ready to grow from this experience.

Think about what you, three years from now, will say to you once you’ve walked through this as an epic learning experience and you’re stronger than ever! My guess is it’ll go something like this.

“I’m SO proud of you. Look at you! You did it. I’m so glad you decided to not succumb to your feelings of regret and stay locked in your perceived failure. You did an amazing thing back there when you got up, learned from that experience, and used that to create the next best version of yourself. Way to go, rockstar. And now look where you are!”

At least, that’s how I imagine it. What about you?

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Easy, Energizing Blueberry Granola

Easy energizing blueberry granola recipe uses raw honey, ghee, chia seeds, almonds, cinnamon and dried blueberries to create this perfectly crunchy cereal or snack or yogurt topper!.png

This easy, energizing granola doesn’t shy away from healthy fats. In fact, it embraces them.

When I went vegan overnight in 2015 I avoided most fats and oils for the next couple years.

That being said, without going into it, (i’ll go into it in depth in another upcoming blog post) I found that my body definitely need a cleanse from all the highly unhealthy fats usually consumed within a standard american diet like I was eating.

But, to avoid healthy fats forever isn’t a good practice for long-term health and longevity for most people.

So in this granola recipe I use a healthy amount of ghee, which is a clarified butter. It’s pretty easy to find (they even started carrying it this fall, at Aldi!)! But if you really can’t find any ghee, coconut oil works just fine for this recipe! I just love the warm, comforting taste of the ghee in this recipe, and it sustains me a bit longer than the same version with coconut oil.

Easy Energizing Granola


1/3 cup ghee

1/4 cup raw honey (local preferred)

2-3 Tbs chia seeds

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp

1 tsp pink Himalayan salt

3 cups certified gluten-free rolled oats

1/2 cup finely chopped almonds (or slivered almonds)

3/4 cup dried blueberries (or other dried fruit)

Preheat your oven to 300°F, and in a very large glass bowl, I like to put my ghee and honey in the bowl first and pop it in the pre-heating oven to melt. After a minute or two (please don’t leave it in there longer than 5 minutes, you just need the ghee (clarified butter) to melt and the honey to be nice and soft) remove the bowl from the oven and stir the ghee and honey together. Add the salt, cinnamon, chia seeds, and the rest of the ingredients and stir and combine until all the oats and nuts are visibly coated with your liquid mixture.

Of course, you can simply melt the ghee in the microwave or on the stove-top as well. I’m just very keen on trying to messy ONE bowl while making this recipe. Haha.

Lay a sheet of oven safe foil or parchment paper on baking sheet, pour and even out the granola mixture onto the baking sheet, and bake for 30-40 minutes (less if you’re using parchment paper, a little more if using foil). Stir the mixture every 10-15 minutes so it bakes evenly.

This recipe is deeply enjoyed by the whole family! We like to splash some almond milk on it in the mornings or grab a handful of it for snack. I personally love it with fresh berries on top of a bowl of unsweetened coconut yogurt. It’s perfect sweetness mixed with the tangy yogurt is delightful.

I use ghee for this recipe because of it’s warming and soothing qualities. Especially in the winter months, the ghee is satisfying and comforting, even more-so than other oils, I’ve found.

I tend to use ghee often in the cold winter months in Minnesota.

People with a dairy intolerance can usually tolerate ghee, since the milk proteins have been removed in clarification.

(if you live in a warmer climate, you may prefer a lighter oil such as olive oil or coconut oil, and you’ll definitely want to sub for these, if you’re vegan!)

This granola recipe helps keep your energy burning a little longer because of the healthy, long chain fats in both the ghee and the chia seeds!

My last thought, is that this recipe can get a little sweet. A serving size is about 1/2 cup per day for adults, maybe 1/4 cup for kids, if you’re watching sugar (even the healthy sugars in the raw honey, although beneficial sometimes, can spike blood sugar levels).

Happy baking and happy munching!!