BodyAwe

"Your body speaks up for you when you do not speak up for yourself."

practice
Here is a question I would love for you to ponder:
Have you thought about how rituals can add value to your daily life?
Ritual Definition = Practicing a ritual simply means doing something over and over again. It could be a daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, etc. We practice rituals to try to achieve a goal or get better at something.
For some of us, getting started with rituals can be difficult. It’s easy to find excuses that stop us from practicing (it’s too cold, I’m too tired, etc.)Or some of us have incorporated rituals into our lifestyle, and we force ourselves to do it without having fun.
(Stop here and take our Ritual Questionnaire to receive our three part series on How to Love Rituals!)

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WHY RITUALS?

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We spend our time doing the things that matter most to us. Rituals are a good way of prioritizing your life to make sure you’re making the most of what you want out of life.
If you don’t practice something, what you’re saying about that thing is that it doesn’t matter to you.
So… identify something that meets the following three criteria:
-It makes you happy
-It’s easy to put in your schedule
-It’s important to you
And let’s get you started with your ritual!

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A FEW EXAMPLES

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Personal Story #1:
I have a friend whose mom got a FitBit for Christmas. Her ritual is to walk 10,000 steps every day. It’s how she makes sure she’s staying active. Her son has the same desire – to stay active. But his ritual is to walk his dog every day! They’re always changing up the length and routes of the walks, but they’re still staying active.  A ritual will not look the same for everyone. And that’s okay! Figure out what works for you.
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Personal Story #2
A friend of mine told me about a buddy of his who wanted to spend more time with God. He asked my friend what he should do to make sure he spends more time with God.My friend’s advice was simple:
Set a reminder on your phone to read your Bible every morning at 7am. And don’t do anything else until you’re done.
Sometimes, the key to a successful ritual is just getting started, and committing yourself to do it. Eventually, it’ll become a practice and you’ll learn to love it!
Personal Story #3:
A while back, I decided to try the Zone Diet. I thought it would be great – have food delivered to me, I would not have to cook, etc. But, when the food arrived, it was never what I wanted!  I tried to incorporate this diet as a ritual. It didn’t work for me. But rather than just “grit my teeth and bare it”, I made an adjustment to getting back into my ritual of listening to my body and giving her what she really wanted to nourish herself with on a daily basis.

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COACHING ENCOURAGEMENT

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I encourage you to Focus on the practice versus the outcome. Check in on the outcome every once and a while to make sure you’re on track, but other than that, just enjoy yourself!
Remember to be flexible! If something comes up, go attend to that, and find time for your ritual later in the day.

If you want practical next steps for how to incorporate this into your life, take this questionnaire now.

Hey there,

It’s Coach Stephanie, and this week I am sharing ‘body acceptance’ choices from my “Natural Beauty Series” where we compare a Natural approach with a Conventional approach to body acceptance.

The Conventional approach teaches us we must strive to reach someone else’s idea of a “perfect” body.

The Natural approach teaches you to be happy with who you are and to celebrate your true self.

My hope is that you’ll learn to find freedom in the different areas that we discuss. Remember it is your choice to pick whatever approach you desire.

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WHAT IS BODY ACCEPTANCE?

Body Acceptance is exactly what it sounds like: it is learning to accept and embrace your body’s style (The Natural Approach). Your body’s style is how you emanate the way you walk and talk and communicate with yourself and others in a way that makes you feel so good.

On the other hand, cultural influences tell us that we need to change our bodies and alter our appearance to ‘fit into’ the visual images we see in magazines, billboards, movies and TV. This is what I call The Conventional Approach. If we allow this outside pressure to dominate how we feel about our body and interfere with how we present our self to the world and our self we will be miserable.

Many of my clients are thriving as they learn to practice Body Acceptance. And it’s because of this one easy tip I’ve shared with them.

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HOW TO PRACTICE BODY ACCEPTANCE

I encourage you to look at visual images that show all body sizes and shapes (just go to the grocery store and you will see all body shapes and sizes). Pay attention to all the different heights, shapes and sizes. Note the different hair styles, hair color, types of skin, etc. Focus on what breaks the standard of beauty, not what conforms to it.

Practice this and become more empathic with yourself and others. The bottom line is to feel and be healthy at whatever weight you and your body feel comfortable with. If and when you chose to change your size and shape then you will independently take those steps and choices to make whatever changes you desire.

I encourage you to be aware of outside cultural influences that make you second-guess your choices.

It is about you and your body in partnership ( Body knowledge System ®) to make the best choices for how you eat and move and showcase your talents to the world.

As Lillian Bustle, a well know burlesque dancer, once said:

“The more body diversity is normalized in our minds, the kinder we can be with ourselves and with our bodies”

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BODY KNOWLEDGE SYSTEM WISDOM

Here’s a practical example of what it looks like to practice Body Acceptance and live with a posture of confidence.

Let’s consider Barbra Streisand when her career first got going in the early 60s, potential managers and agents worried that she wouldn’t fit the bill of a traditional female pop star.

Honestly, they were worried about her nose.

140 million albums sold later, nobody’s worried about the nose.

  • Presence begins with a positive body image.
  • Your body’s wisdom projects that image through expressing the respect you have for yourself.
  • And thereby, you attract positive energy from those around you.

NEXT STEPS

So far over the course of this Natural Beauty series, we’ve looked at makeup, pro-aging, and now body acceptance.

I’ve shared this Natural Approach with you, because I think it will help you and me to find a lot of freedom in how we interact with our bodies. And again if the Conventional approach is good for you, go forth.

Look out for more conversations with understanding your natural beauty forthcoming.

I’m looking forward to reading your thoughts and comments below.

Be sure to follow me on Twitter and Facebook for more natural beauty tips.

Talk soon,
Stephanie

This week I’m continuing my “Natural Beauty Series” where we’ll compare two different approaches to the way we care for our bodies, The Conventional approach, which is driven by external influences, and the Natural approach, which is driven by your internal self.

The Conventional Approach:  The conventional approach says we must make alterations to our true selves. This is where cultural influences become a big part of how we see ourselves physically. They suggest we should look a certain way. If we don’t we should alter or remove something on our physical bodies to look more like what is considered acceptable beauty. People all over the world spend billions of dollars a year on makeup and plastic surgery because of these cultural influences.

The Natural Approach:  Alternatively, the natural approach teaches us to celebrate our true self. It suggests we make alterations to our inner selves and leave the outer self alone. The natural approach encourages us to appreciate our natural beauty versus trying so hard to meet the image of ‘perfection’ that is forced upon us through a myriad of social and cultural influences.
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PRO-AGING Vs. ANTI-AGING

Pro-Aging is quite simply the opposite of Anti-Aging. Rather than covering up or altering grey hair, wrinkles, etc. Pro-Aging is all about embracing the way that you age in a natural way and celebrating your body’s expression of yourself!

Time out!

I admit that every 4 weeks I go to my beautician to get my hair colored versus keeping it grey.
Is that conventional or is it natural?

It is a choice.

I am not saying one way is better than the other. My goal is to raise your awareness that beauty can be real and natural. I want to help you understand you can choose to ignore the external pressures to be a perfect physical self.

And here is the catch: For me, maintaining a red head with blond highlights makes me feel beautiful. And I use natural products.

My point is this. It’s YOUR call to go pro-aging or anti-aging and you don’t need to choose one or the other. There is no reason you can’t do both. You simply make choices that make you feel beautiful.

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CULTURAL INFLUENCES

Let’s be honest, everywhere we turn, we see messages about how we need to look and how we need to age. My question to you today is this:

Do you want to fight against your body as she ages, or do you want to embrace her natural expression of herself?

Everything you hear, read and see in the media will tell you to fight your body’s natural aging process. They try to sell you creams, surgeries, and dyes. And if that’s what you want to do – go ahead! There is nothing wrong with that approach.

But you may find a lot of freedom in embracing your body’s natural expression of aging. You might find freedom in no longer fighting what your body wants to do.  And really this is all about you being you. It’s about being comfortable in your own skin. Learning to look in the mirror and going out into the world feeling confident and comfortable.

Now, this isn’t to say you can’t take advice from external sources. But the natural approach to beauty may free you from comparing yourself to those sources.

I believe that self-acceptance, in a more natural way, could be an option for you!

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BODY KNOWLEDGE SYSTEM WISDOM

One day, I realized a few things:

  1. I only care about “Anti-Aging” because the media was telling me to.
  2. Aging has its place within our lifetimes. I don’t want to look like I’m 16… or 35… I shouldn’t and I can’t!
  3. I was ready to embrace my age and my body’s expression of that age.

How about you? Are you ready to do the same?

My message for you today is this: listen to what your body is trying to tell you about aging. For me, it was incredibly freeing to embrace my body’s expression of my age. Maybe it will be for you too!

The Conventional approach to beauty is reliant on alterations. The Natural approach is all about celebrating your true self.

NEXT STEPS

We will be looking at Natural Beauty in other areas of your life over the coming weeks. In the meantime, are you someone who feels trapped by external standards of beauty? Do you feel pressured to fight against your body’s natural aging process? Are you ready to experience the freedom of the natural approach to beauty, stay within the conventional mindset or both?

It’s always your call.

I’m looking forward to reading your thoughts and comments below.

Be sure to follow me on Twitter and Facebook for more natural beauty tips.

Talk soon,
Stephanie

See part one of this series, Makeup.

This summer learn how to connect with your body and feel beautiful inside and out. Become comfortable with your body, wherever you are!

Here is the video of my May 7th class. This class covered two techniques that will carry you through the summer barbecues, beach parties, pool lounging events and beyond.

Hey there,

It’s Coach Stephanie, and I’m wondering if you remember the song “Treat Her Like A Lady” by Cornelius Ray and Sister Rose?

That song embodies the principles behind the practice of the Body Knowledge System®.

(We’ll listen to it here in a minute).

Your body deserves attention beyond the basics of food, shelter, clothing, and exercise. Your body deserves your RESPECT. and that requires your knowledge of her needs, wants, and desires. In exchange for that, your body shares her wisdom with you.

Wisdom? Doesn’t that reside in your mind?

No, not all of it.

So, how do you access that wisdom? Through your practice of the Body Knowledge System®.

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Let’s Listen And Move…
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Try this:

  1. Pick a number between 1 and 10 to represent a scale of your current mood: 1 being sad (pessimistic) all the way to 10 being happy (optimistic).
  1. Watch the video below:

3) Stand up and MOVE to the music… just listen & MOVE!

4) If you feel like it, keep moving to the music.

5) Now, where are you on the mood scale? I’ll bet it increased.

Keep moving to the music, or any music, until you’ve reached a “10”.

Embrace the feeling, enjoy the feeling, and engage your body in a commitment to continue to the feeling into your future.

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Join Our Online Community
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Join our online community of women who are learning RESPECT. and beginning the conversation as to what this means to you with other like-minded women!

  1. Use this form to contact me and enter “Google Plus Groups” in the comments.
  2. Then look out for my personalized invitation to join us! [Body Confidence with Stephanie Wood]

It’s that easy! And once you get my invite and accept, you are now part of this warm community. You’ll see the videos we’re recording to supplement these articles (and be able to have relevant conversations that you’re interested in to learn and laugh with each other plus share what you are involved with).

See you “on the inside” :)

Stephanie

listen to your bodyHey there,

It’s Coach Stephanie, and this week I’m here to tell you that Body Talk 101 (from Body Knowledge System ®) is NOT the same thing as Body Language.

If you’re interested in learning more about Body Language, you can choose from hundreds of books on Amazon that cover that topic.

But what we’re doing here is Body Talk 101, from my Body Knowledge System®.

Allow me to elaborate.

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BODY TALK 101 BASICS (BKS®)

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Body Talk refers to the direct exchange of information between you and your body.

Your body is your best friend, and conversational Body Talk® gives you a way of communicating with your body to bring about immediate, tangible, material, and positive CHANGE!

But first you must (re)establish the intimate contact with your body that you were born with….

So let’s cover the basics of how you do my BKS ® Body Talk exercise:

This week’s BKS ® Wisdom Within teaches us about Body Talk…

  • Body Talk refers to the direct exchange of information between you and your body.
  • Body Talk is sharing & listening to hopes & wishes with your best friend, your body.
  • Body Talk inspires Body Action to guarantee Body Confidence

WAIT!

No additional bullet today. Instead of reading about taking action, why not schedule a time that I can help you practice this Body Talk technique?

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THE BKS® TALK IS MEANT TO BE EXPERIENCED

SO THIS IS WHAT WE DO NEXT

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This is important because with me as your Coach, we can facilitate this conversation so that the two of you are truly clear with your intentions for both of you. It is this conversation in the moment which makes it truly profound.

The Body Talk Basics are meant to be experienced, not just read about! So click the link below to get started with your no-cost conversation with me.

Click here to get started .

Why not also join our online community?

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This online community creates a safe place to regain your Self Esteem through a sustainable system of body knowledge and your body’s wisdom. It’s a lot of fun!

Here’s how to join this private, no-cost google + group:

1. Use this form to contact me and enter “Google Plus Group” in the comments.

2. Then look for my personalized invitation to join us! [Body Confidence Community with Stephanie Wood]

Talk to you soon,

Stephanie

How would you feel if, by loving yourself, you could give love to others?

Let me explain with a story…

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THE PRINCESS AND HER KNIGHT

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Love yourself

Once upon a time, a beautiful princess moved through her days and nights doing what all princesses do: smiling, curtsying, nodding and dancing the mechanical dance of banquets and formality.

She felt nothing but a longing for a prince, her knight in shining armor, to rescue her from her monotony.

After years and years of playing along and ignoring her own voice, the princess suddenly had an epiphany!

Rejoicing, our princess realized her lonely days were over; she would never be alone again, because she had just discovered why her prince never came.  She didn’t have a good relationship with her body, so how could she have a good relationship with someone else?

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BODY AND RELATIONSHIP: WHAT’S THE CONNECTION?

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This February, think about what that inner voice is telling you.  You may be waiting for all these changes to happen, forgetting that they all start with you.

Why not take this “Understand the Voice Within You” survey and then have a conversation with me…

…because when you come from your heart during a conversation, things you never thought about are explored and revealed.

The month of February is a reminder of love and relationships…whether with others or with yourself or both.

 

This week I want to share with you why I think New Year’s Resolutions are BS.

New Years Resolutions

And honestly, it’s not even about my personal opinion. Studies have shown that New Year’s Resolutions just flat out don’t work.

Have you ever found yourself giving up on your resolutions a few weeks in?

(Haven’t we all)?

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SO, WHY WAIT??

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Why wait until January 1st to get fit? Or create new relationship or (you know the rest of this scenario)

How we can channel the motivation that a New Year brings into the day-to-day?

What if we canned the word “Resolutions” and swapped it for “Motivations”?

 Resolutions stay on the surface:

-Lose 20lbs

-Get a better job

-Find a partner

 

Motivations speak to the heart of the issue:

-Feel confident and beautiful in my body

-Get the respect and pay I deserve

-Find the love that’s been missing from my life

 

Energy

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STOP “SHOULD’ING” ON YOURSELF

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What if we stopped asking, “What should I do today?” and started asking, “What would give me energy today?”

Don’t wait till January 1st to force a bunch of “shoulds” on yourself…

  • I should workout five times a week…
  • I should eat a salad for lunch every day…
  • I should work less…

Instead, ask yourself:

What would give me energy today?

In fact, do me a favor… when you wake up tomorrow morning, ask yourself, “What would give me energy today?”

Try it every day for a week, and let me know how it goes by commenting on this blog or posting a message on Facebook.

Let’s move into this New Year with grace, love, hope and fun.

 

It’s Stephanie and this week I want to speak with you about superheroes. Yep, that’s right… superheroes.

confidence

Everybody’s familiar with Superman and Batman of course, but I’m wondering if you’ve ever heard of Wonder Woman?

As you can see in the picture, Wonder Woman has a very confident posture… let’s call it “the power position”.

And you know what’s interesting about the power position?

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MORE CONFIDENCE, LESS ANXIETY

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Research has actually shown that assuming that position – even for just two minutes – can increase testosterone levels by 20% (which boosts confidence) while simultaneously decreasing cortisol levels by 25% (which reduces anxiety).

Isn’t it crazy that simply changing your posture can increase your body confidence and decrease your anxiety?

(Well, it’s not so crazy to me… I’ve been aware of this for many years! 

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MY ENCOURAGEMENT TO YOU

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When you wake up tomorrow, why not assume the power position for two minutes? Close your eyes, breathe deeply, and stand confidently.

See if this practice affects your body confidence in a positive way… and if it does, let me know!


P.S. I’m launching my Body Confidence Community with Stephanie Wood for women who want to revitalize their body confidence with a sustainable system.

And as a bonus: sending out contest information so you can get involved with each other in this community. It is a good thing. It is all about community and supporting each other.

I’m sure over the years you have received some great advice or given it.

Well recently I decided to have a contest to see what great advice other Wellness Professionals might be willing to share. The contest was sent out through Self Growth a leading health and wellness site.

The contest had great responses and I want to share one with you that really spoke to me. It comes from Gigi Blackshear (gigiblackshear.com):

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My best tip is that when your spirits are low, take 10 minutes and stand in front of the mirror. Look beyond your face and into your own eyes.

Most of us don’t look at ourselves long enough to see the beauty that lies within. We see imperfections and either turn away or begin to criticize ourselves.

However, if you look past the imperfections and past the bad hair day hair, if you look into your own eyes long enough you will begin to see the beauty that we were all created with. The beauty of your spirit! It is there, just look deep enough! It will smile back at you and say that You are enough! Exactly the way you are! Beautiful from the inside out!

What wonderful advice don’t you think?

It’s important to feel good about yourself and communicate with your body.

I would love to hear your thoughts.

Coach Stephanie Wood

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