Boundary Waters Canoe Area Solo Adventure Day two!

It’s six a.m., and I wake up with the dawn, excited for the new day. I clear the sleep from my eyes and set about making coffee. It was overcast and a bit chilly, it also seemed quite windy again even early in the morning. I had a feeling a storm was on the way, so set about my morning duties, grabbing some food, and the most crucial chore on my mind was getting my coffee fix. I tried to ignore the signs of the weather, but I know when it’s time to retreat.

 

Startled by the Thunder God’s and some warning raindrops that sent a firm signal to get to it; I knew I had better hurry and put things away to stay dry. I quickly tucked my camp chair under the canoe, filled my coffee thermos, and headed for the tent. Just as it started pouring hard lighting lit up the tent feeling way to close for comfort.

 

Zipping the rainfly down tight to prevent the water from coming in, but it also prevented me from seeing out. Sometimes not knowing is worse than anything! For hours I was stuck in the tent while Mother Nature reminded me who was in charge here. As if I needed reminding. Luckily even though cell service was very spotty, I was somehow able to make a call to my husband so he could check the weather for me.

 

He had said that it was going to be a couple hours be for it passed so I might as well get comfortable. Also, he let me know to expect another spot of rain that afternoon. This gave me plenty of time to think, lying in bed with my thoughts. This was when it occurred to me that I should make some videos of my solo adventure to share with our friends on our Adventure Sisters Facebook community. I recorded myself and my thoughts, and it felt comforting like I was able to talk to someone while I was a bit scared and wishing for company.

 

The storm passed without incident, thank goodness, and I emerged from the tent ready to do some exploring. It was crazy how just an hour before the wind was howling and now the calm after the storm turned the water as still as glass. Since I had nobody to entertain but myself, I took this opportunity to go for a paddle and explore Slim Lake scenery. It was a nice break in the day that allowed me to keep my mind and body active.

I paddled for about an hour or more until the wind changed directions and started to pick up again. The lake began to sway with force, and I turned the canoe around to head back to the safety of my campsite. When I got back to the site, all I had to do was wait for the rain to come, so I made lunch and sat back to relax. Interestingly, I was starting to get antsy, I felt that I was over the rain, but there was nothing I could do about that!

 

Inevitably it started to sprinkle then come down harder, and I had to retreat to the tent yet again. This time I took the opportunity to journal and gave myself a tarot card reading. When there are no distractions, it’s easy to get into the flow of creativity, and I began to write and write. Even after the storm had passed, I felt moved to keep writing as I sat out and watched the scenery sitting close to the water on the boulder point.

 

I have always thought that the best conversations happen on rainy days, it seems that it is true when I am alone as well. The quiet time allowed me to hear myself, to listen to my gut and time to digest what it is trying to say. This was why I went out to the Boundary Waters in the first place. To reconnect with myself, and this is what happened.

 

I was missing the comfort of my family. The BWCA reminded me just how important they are when I am going through the metaphorical storms in my life. We tend to retreat into who and what is comfortable when we are scared or confused, and this experience reminded me not to take my blessings of my great family for granted.

 

Some days it’s easy to let the dumb annoyances of life get in between relationships and happiness. This time alone helped to take responsibility to catch those times when I get back home. There is real spiritual healing that happens when I go into the vastness of the Boundary Waters. Every trip I make changes me deep inside and for the better. I come home with a new appreciation for my life, tending to see situations from a different perspective that I had not seen before.

 

Inevitably I miss the solitude and the healing power of the big water and vast forests. The slow time of nature and quite relaxed pace of living isn’t so easy to bring home with you. There is lots of noise in the world we’ve come to know, most of it is just that, noise. I miss the realness of just being. I find it hard to keep centered when I return to home from the BWCA.

 

My wish is to embody that Zen flow of poignant peace folding into myself so securely to be mine forever. If I were able to do bottle that feeling of serenity, I would be rich! What I can do is continue to go to the places and do the things that allow this feeling as much as possible. To make sure I do the things that feed my soul is just as important as caring for my body or my work.

 

Mind, body, spirit is all of me, neither more important than the other. It’s up to me to take care of all three. As day two ended with clear skies, a peaceful campfire, and a nightcap, it was clear to me this solo excursion into the wild was precisely what I needed to do so. I felt the peace I had been craving, I felt the gratitude for just being, I was genuinely relaxed and connected. Yes. This is the stuff that helps make life great.

Good night friends.

I hope my words help you or even allow for a short escape while you envision peace and serene solitude. Thank you for sharing my journey with me.

 

Sending joy and blessings to you,

Love, Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

 

Visit me at :

EmyMinzel.com

EmyMinzel.AdventureSister@gmail.com

@EmyMinzel

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

 

 

Finding a balance ~

Finding a few small steps towards finding balance ~

Do you ever have a hard time keeping balance in your life? I think most people do at various times. I know some days I do much better than other days but giving and receiving are part of how the world works. It’s an energetic exchange that applies to the natural world and what you give out should be coming back to you. Very similar to how we go to work; then we get a paycheck. Most of us would not go to work every day if we were not getting something of value in return, right?

I’ll give you an example; Stacy and I have decided to dedicate ourselves to a 40-day Nabhi Kriya Kundalini Yoga practice as part of our self-healing journey. It is a spiritual and physical challenge to make our well-being a priority and it also needs to be done every single day, for 40 days. Some days we breeze through easy peasy. Other days we put it off until the last minute. Last Friday I squeaked it in just before midnight!

As part of this Yoga routine, they give you about a 4-minute rest period call Savasana/Corse pose. I have noticed, that when I am super busy with life things, I get a bit antsy when laying there. Thinking. “okay. Is this part over yet? I have things to do.” The routine gives you this time to rest and reflect as it is part of the spiritual teaching and holds a significant purpose; that is why they put it in the practice.

Nabhi Kriya is almost like an aerobic exercise and feels like a workout. I truly enjoy how it makes me feel and the energy it gives me. But I seem to have this urge to deny myself the ‘resting’ part of the practice, when I have really earned it! I literally feel my brain wanting to reject receiving what it is my body/mind/spirit needs, after this physical practice and for what?!

This is not the natural way of the world. To give and to receive in perfect balance is the way it is supposed to work. I am not doing myself any favors by thinking I don’t have the time or deserve the rest my body needs after this workout. I make myself lay and finish the Savasana, clearly, I realize I must train my brain to allow myself to relax.

This is probably why lots of people think they are not ‘good’ at meditating. It’s our overactive minds keeping us from peace. It is our job to control our thoughts and actions. If we train ourselves to exercise every day for 40 days, we sure should be able to meditate or stay in a state of relaxation for 5 minutes a day!

Doing this practice has led to a huge self-realization that I have not been allowing myself to receive the rest/relaxation/good feelings, that I know in my heart, I have ‘earned’ after doing the work! Do you know how this hidden habit I formed, can block my progress in everyday life?! Holy moly kids! This is a breakthrough discovery!

The realization that I do not easily allow myself to receive, has led me to act on that imbalance in all areas of my life. There is a mantra I like to use that serves as a reminder for my brain. “I take in life in perfect balance.” It is a verbal queue to let me allow myself to give and receive what it is I need.

It may even be a bit of human nature to martyr. That is because it is easier to give than receive for some people. When we see people who live like this, it’s easy to see it is not a healthy way to live. You also must work on filling your own cup.

We are not made to give and give until there is nothing left. It’s not the way the universe is supposed to work! There are plenty of us who have this habit and we don’t even see it. Now that my eyes have been opened, I will give you an example of how I made steps to correct it.

Just this weekend we had plans to have Stacy and Marty come over to play cards and have dinner. Stacy and I usually just make appetizers and don’t make a fuss about food for the evenings we gather to do this, just keep things simple. However, this weekend I wanted to make dinner for them because it was Marty’s birthday and I wanted to do something kind for my friends.

When I told Stacy what I was planning she said. “You don’t have to do that!”

I said. “I know! But cooking is how I show love, so please let me!” She obliged and I was thankful for her allowing me to share love with my dear friends.

It turned out that Marty came down with the stomach bug and they could not come for cards and dinner. “Bummer!” but totally understandable. I was thankful they didn’t come and share it! Yet, I had made plans to make cheesecake since it was a special birthday occasion. I found myself thinking, “Well, I don’t need to make this cheesecake, do I?”

Then I thought on it some more… I was denying myself and my husband the desert just because we weren’t having company? This is a silly way to think! We deserve dessert too, don’t you think? (Heck ya!)

So, I made the cheesecake and the dinner we had intended. Guess what?! They were both delicious! There was no need to deny myself after the work of shopping, cooking, cleaning and preparing throughout the day. Which is exactly what I normally would have done, if I had not recognized my own behavior because of this Nahbi Kriya practice!

It is funny how the Universe puts lessons inside of lessons for me. I have enjoyed learning my lessons through Joy and sharing them with others in hopes of helping them too! Here are some other ways I will work on allowing myself to give and receive, in balance, as it should be.

  1. When I purchase new clothes or shoes; I will promise myself to donate or discard the same number of items from my wardrobe that I no longer like or wear.
  2. When I am thanked or praised by another I will say ‘thank you’ instead of dismissing the compliment. I will allow myself to receive kindness instead of brushing it off. I will freely give praise and kindness to others as well.
  3. When I have an abundance of something, I will share it with others. I will allow others to share their abundance with me! This usually happens regularly with friends that garden and is a joyous experience for all involved!
  4. In a bigger picture kind of way, I am going to make a big effort to donate blood once a month. If I want a good life, wouldn’t it be a cool way to pay it forward by donating blood that gives life?! I like to think so.
  5. After a work week, I will do better at scheduling time to play and relax on the weekends; doing things that bring me joy. I tend to want to use the weekend time to ‘get things done’ instead of recuperating for the next week to come. I will schedule time and make plans to live, laugh and love! Plus, there is a reason we call Sunday, the day of rest!

There are lots of ways to practice giving and receiving and some of us are better at one than the other. Yet it is still very important to find balance, for all of us, for a healthy mind, body, spirit life!

What are the habits and intentions you use to bring balance into your life? I’d love to hear your suggestions. They may help more people than you know!

Wishing you the magical soulful healing you need right now to be the best you can be.

With love,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

@EmyMinzel

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

 

Lean into it.

I have been writing a lot lately about taking responsibility for the energy we share with the world around us. I talk about sharing joy and being the light of happiness for yourself and others. Yet there are times when it is okay and even imperative to lean into your sadness, anger, frustration or any other feeling that may not resemble the usual sunshiny picture.

Life likes to hand us tough times once in a while. We are only human, and we all have limits of how much stress or BS we can or are willing to take. We have the right to get angry at that insulting thing that someone said. We are justified to be sad over the loss of a loved one or for any reason actually.

Sometimes the best thing we can do is lean into these feelings and let them in.

When we are too busy denying our true feelings; the Universe and the people around you will know. You aren’t doing yourself or anyone else any favors by pretending otherwise. You are not as good of an actor as you may think you are. Fake happiness still vibes at a lower frequency than real joy and I believe you’re unable to fake it for a reason. That reason is that you are supposed to feel your feelings so that you can heal them.

Now, I don’t mean you have to wallow in misery all day, but you know what? If you need a day to just be as miserable as you need and to let your despair come out your eyes and run down your face; then you really should allow yourself the time to do it!

Sad movie Saturday here you come! It can be a therapeutic release to let those tears out!

If we keep denying our hurt; it will not be possible to bring it out into daylight for the healing it needs. It’s okay to say, “You know what? I am sad today. I just don’t feel like my best self. I need time to heal my spirit and it may take a bit.”

Your loved ones will understand your need for space. They will most likely try and help pull you out of your funk though and this may work for you. You may decide to let them try and help lift your spirits! I know it helps me to get out of the house and hang out with my friends to shake up my routine a bit. My friends and loved ones are a great source of joy.

I just wanted to remind you that it is always okay to feel all your feelings! Just be aware that learning to navigate the healing of them is where the work is all yours too. Lean into that anger, sadness or frustration, really feel it, to find the source.

We must heal ourselves and the source of what brought on those feelings. It’s our job to do the work and ask ourselves; “What must I do to change the situation making me feel this way, so those feelings can leave?” If you need help, ask for it. Those around you cannot read minds any better than you can. There are as professionals who will be glad to help you as well.

Go within to dissect the situation and disolve the source of the pain. It’s still our job to take ownership of our thoughts, feelings, words, and actions. The best way to do that is to lean into them, look in the mirror, stare yourself in the face and say “I love you. I believe in you. You are going to get through this.”

Give yourself permission to lean into those emotions and then make a choice to lean into the healing as well. Do you need to find forgiveness for yourself or another? Do you need to change thoughts of judgment to thoughts of love and compassion for someone or yourself? It’s up to you to find your truth on where you need healing.

You are worth the investment of time and effort to mend your mind, body and spirit. I am writing this to let you know you are not alone on your down days. There is nothing wrong with you when this happens. You are perfect the way you are, and if you don’t feel so, you have the power to change too.

You matter and I believe in you and love you.

Wishing you the magical soulful healing you need right now to be the best you can be.

With love,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

@EmyMinzel

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

https://www.facebook.com/BWCAdventureSisters

Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com