Three Questions To Clear Your Brain

Three Questions To Clear Your Brain

Often when I talk to client I hear...  “Well, life has been crazy but… normally…” 

And out flows the perfect world scenario. When things are going well and you have time to plan, prep, and focus. You know, when things are running smoothly. 

As if this is typical. As if this is life.

The reality is life gets lifey. 

If you knew you were going to die in 24 hours

If you knew you were going to die in 24 hours

What would you do?

You've probably heard this question or a variation on it before, it's a good one.

We get caught up in the doing sometimes we forget the living.

Do you have a moment right now? If yes - continue reading. If no - come back to me.

Okay. Here we go.

Grab a blank sheet of paper.

You. Food. And Worth.

I am good. I am bad. 

One of the first things I do with a new client is a food journal review. The same statements come up again and again:

“I was really bad on this day"
“I was having a major cheat day"
“Oh, this is what it looks like when I am really good"

And so on.
These lines are said with a laugh, but words are powerful. And these words - that declare a person good or bad - have deep roots and jagged edges.

It breaks my heart.

You are not good or bad based on what you eat. You are just making choices.

Some are more nourishing than others, but it is all a spectrum.

I can relate. I get where it comes from and have been guilty of it myself. Which is why I know how powerful it is to change the narrative.

You can start by looking at your motives - why are you trying to eat healthy? To look good naked, to play with your kids, to avoid disease?

Whatever the motive - the common thread is to gain something in life that makes you feel better.

The words you consume can be more deleterious than the food you eat. They can have more of an impact on your body. The relationship you have with yourself and your food matters.

And it is important to know that no matter what you have eaten today you have value as you are right now. 

Mindset is a jerk

Your brain is your best and worst friend. 

Thoughts are tricky things. 

What I see over and over is misguided motivation. A "motivation" that is fueled from self loathing. 

The interior dialogue that goes something like "If you don't do this you are lazy".

"If you don't go on your run today you are terrible."

"If you don't hit up yoga you are worthless."

Or the track playing might be something more like "You are so fat and ugly you don't deserve that piece of cake."

Or "What is wrong with you why can't you stick to anything?!"

Or "You just ate that whole bag of tortilla chips you have no self control!"

Or something else where you relate an action to your worth.

It's exhausting.

And painful. You are building an extremely rigid relationship with yourself and the activity that is bound to break. 

So what do you do? 

You start to pause.

Every time you notice yourself in a pattern of limitation.

Take a moment and pause. 

Does this belief or thought serve you? 

Does it open or constrict your body?

Ask yourself.

And then ask yourself -

What is something that you like about yourself? What goal are you trying to achieve and why? What kind of life do you want to lead?

The act of pausing pulls us out of the automatic reaction and allows us to be present and proactive. 

Believe you can change. 

Bring in self-compassion which allows for elasticity and sustainability when it comes to achieving actual lifestyle change.

Permanent results. 

Tidbit Tuesday | What is your relationship to food? [VIDEO]

Okay. So we are taking a walk on the slightly woo side.

In this Tidbit Tuesday I come to you with a thought experiment. How do you approach your food? Why? Because the relationship you have with what you eat really does matter - watch to learn more and to see my sleepy face. 

It isn't all about food

What you eat DOES matter, but it isn't the whole picture.

The world of nutrition is jam packed full of different people preaching different approaches. You can find whatever you are looking for - articles to support your beliefs - to tear them down - whatever you need the internet has your back.

My standpoint is that you need to find what works for you. And what works for you today, may not work tomorrow - also what does "work" mean? Health? Weight? 

These clarifying questions are excellent to ask when you are trying to create change.

Now, back to my point.

It isn't all about food.

What do I mean by that? Well. I could tell you THE PERFECT DIET FOR YOU and if you are so stressed out following that diet, it isn't going to work.

If you follow that diet, but still only manage to get 5 hours of solid sleep that night. It isn't going to work.

If you follow that diet, but keep supporting bad relationships in your life. It isn't going to work.

If you follow that diet, and have a terrible internal monologue. It isn't going to work

If you follow that diet, but don't believe you can actually change. It isn't going to work.

Food plays an important role in healing.

But your mind.

It is more powerful.

Learning how to be kind to yourself. Kind to your path. Your progress. Developing patience. These things can be more impactful than the perfect meal plan.

Before and after

We love a before and after shot.

When searching stock photos for before and after this is what I found, I happen to think both ladies are lovely. 

When searching stock photos for before and after this is what I found, I happen to think both ladies are lovely. 

Shoot, I love a before and after shot. Who doesn't?

It gives us hope.

It gives us a feeling that change is possible.

That hard work nets results.

That (potentially) we've been doing it wrong and if we just fix this one thing we can change.

If we have more discipline. If we really really focus this time.

Then we too can be like Sally Smith from Sunport and drop 5 sizes in in 5 months.

Or we too can go from couch potato to killing it at marathons in 2 months.  

Or we too can go from just an average joe to RIPPED SUPER HERO STATUS. 

We love a makeover. 

The problem is these are just moments. There is SO MUCH MORE to the story. The fits and starts. The forward progress and backfire.

The after that goes back to the before. 

An image can be deceiving. 

What I am trying to say is that the journey to health, happiness, and strength is complex. It isn't a straight line up and to the right. There isn't always a moment where the "pounds melt off" or where you suddenly feel strong and powerful all the time. There are bright moments and there is a trajectory, but there are a lot of bumps and backslides. 

Sometimes we need to believe in the ease of a before and after to START.

But, don't let the before and after seduce you into feeling like a failure when the journey gets tough, when you have a bad day, or week, or month.  

Keep going forward.

Start and keep starting.

The road may be more muddled than expected, but moving forward is the way you will succeed. 

Love lets go of stress

Stress isn't bad.

Stress is what causes change, adaptation, growth.

But the way we achieve the latter is by having a break from the former.

We need recovery, rest, and the ability to breathe to benefit.

Which is why love is an antidote to stress. I am not talking about the romantic kind of love (though I am sure that also helps) I am talking about the love you give yourself.

Love of where you are, who you are, what you are - right here, right now. Allows the stress of being something different to dissipate. 

It allows elasticity into your life. 

It allows for grace. 

The first step toward change is to allow for what is right now.

Which isn't always easy. 


It's about time I posted something

Life happens.

Back when I was transitioning between my old job and doing Brain Body Gut full time I committed to blogging each day.

I would get up with enough time before work to write a post.

I loved this activity because it helped me connect to what I was passionate about. It cleared my head and gave me focus. It made me excited to learn and grow and find my voice.

But then.

Life happens.

And my frequency of posting diminished.

There are a few reasons why. 

One is that I want to put out valuable content which I need to gather my facts and do a bit of research. This takes time. I can't just hammer it out in a 60 minute time block.

Another is I have been toying around with morning routines. I love not touching a computer screen in the morning, doing a bit of breathing, taking my time to eat breakfast - but - this also takes time. 

So. What to do?

Time is real. 

And you need to pick and choose how you spend it.

This blog is important to me and I'd like posting to, once again, become habitual. To light me up. To inform me and you. 

Which draws me back to the statement "I'd rather have done than perfect".

I am going to embrace that and post more.

When I have time I will do a deep drive on nutrition, but when I don't have time I will still post. 

Sitting down and putting out content helps me figure out exactly what I am trying to say.

There is value in that. 

So my friends if you're interested in something specific let me know. 

Put it in the comments or email me at

What barriers can you pull down to be more prolific?

How to unlock the jaws of a sugar craving?

Eat protein. 

It is a pretty simple test, but does require prep.

First, you have to have protein with you.

I'd like you to have animal protein. The kind you have to chew (ie no shakes). 

Eggs, chicken, steak, pork.

The less processed the better. 

The test:

When you hear the cries for skittles (WE NEEEEDS THEM)...

...or a pastry (PUHLEEASE)

...or a donut (I MUST)

...or even dried fruit (BUT I AM TRYING TO AVOID THE DONUT!!)

1. Eat 2, 4, 6 ounces of your protein option first -

2. Wait 20 minutes (set a timer if you need to) and see - do you still really want the sugary delight? 

If the answer is YES? Well, ok.

If NO. Excellent!!! You are rewiring your brain! Let's celebrate with a self hi-five! 

Rinse. Repeat.


All I want is coffee

This has been a rough week and it is only Wednesday :/

I switched to decaf coffee at the beginning of February.

I did it pretty gradually adding in more and more decaf coffee to my caf coffee until it was all decaf. That didn't suck too bad.

I have done this in the past and those first two days of no caffeine were MIS-ER-ABLE. I was a lump. I had no energy. No light. No focus. I was one sad panda.

But, I got through it.

And this time around it wasn't so bad. I didn't want to die, so that was cool.

But, my friends.

There is one thing I am leaving out. This time. Ohhh this time. I was like, you know what is okay?

Some dark chocolate.

I decided this right around V-day figuring it was apropos to embrace the delightful buzz of 80%+ dark chocolate. 

Yes. I know. Chocolate has caffeine. 

And OH YES. My body loved it.

My brain was so super happy. I'd have moments of OH MI GAWD I can be so productive! Which FEELS great in the moment, but isn't really helping my body for the long term.

Now is time to focus in on the long term. I want to get my body to a place where it isn't so dependent on stimulants to feel ammazeballs. I want that to come from me, I want to support my adrenal glands, and I want to one day maybe enjoy an occasional cup of caf coffee.

I also think chocolate is rad and will let it come to play again, but right now it is serving as a crutch and undermining my goals. 


This month I am letting go of chocolate and boy, does this make me sad.


And all I want is a cup of coffee.

Sometimes the short term goal is so very tempting.

So. Very. Tempting.

And sometimes you have to mute it's siren call and focus on the long term goal.

One decaf sip at a time.


Life is weird, uncomfortable, and yet magical

Where does the road lead?

The road pictured above is the street that I grew up on and if you kept walking you'd see my mailbox pop-up on the left hand side. 

I literally know where that road is going to lead. 

But in the bigger picture the question is not so answerable. Not to get all "we've had too many drinks let's talk about life" on you, but MAN LIFE.

It is weird, uncomfortable, and yet magical. 

I love goals and I think there is value in setting a trajectory in place. The way to start to push your journey into a direction is to have intention


That doesn't mean you know how the hand will play out. 

It just means you are now part of the equation. 


Sometimes surrendering is also of value.

To bask in the unknown. 

To sit with the uncomfortable.

To understand that you don't have control.

Not really.

And that is the weird contradiction of life.

The balance between doing and accepting.

Blueberries = Brainberries?

I have blueberries on my business cards.

The other day I was asked, "Why blueberries? They must means something to you."

And it is true, they do. 

#1: Blueberries are awesome for the brain. A moderate amount has been shown to help with memory, cognitive function, and motor-control. Pah-POW! 

#2: They are tasty. Great for a bit of sweetness, but without the crazy amounts of sugar. Add them to ANYTHING! I even put them in ground meat and spice it with cinnamon and allspice. YUM.

#3: They are packed with antioxidants and phytonutrients.  PHYTONUTRIENTS (!) they are helpers to vitamins and minerals needed to run your body, without these helpers your body is unable to make some very necessary conversions. 

#4: Fiber. Blueberries pack a nice amount of fiber for their punch. 

#5: Benefits for the whole body. There is a ton of research going on about all the benefits of blueberries and the impact they might have on cancer, heart health, and diabetes

As with all food this is about balance and isn't a call to eat a crap ton of blueberries every day. Adding a moderate amount daily/weekly especially when they are in season would be a smart move.


Blueberries are rad and tasty, eat them. 

What do I need to do right now?

I was listening to the On Being podcast and heard a great quote.

It came from a really awesome sounding man named Parker Palmer, he'd gotten some of it from elsewhere, but that is besides the point (listen to the full talk here).

The point is that when I heard I was like OH MAN STICKY NOTE I NEED YOU! So I grabbed one and wrote the line down.

What do I need to do right now to water the root of inner wisdom to make work fruitful?
— Parker Palmer from On Being Talk


I love it. 

It shifts the question that I am used to asking aka "what is most important thing I should focus on right now" to something more profound. 

It takes away the edge of I NEED TO BE PRODUCTIVE AND EFFICIENT and allows for a more creative answer.

Spelled fruitful wrong. Classic me.

Spelled fruitful wrong. Classic me.

Sometimes being "unproductive" for a hot second or two can actually make your work better aka "more fruitful".

Because you can, is sometimes the only reason you need

I love it when people create with no agenda.

When you create because you can.

Because it makes you happy. 

Because you are just creating. 

I was listening to the Invisibilia podcast on NPR. The hosts were talking about how they'd gone through a lot of names while figuring out what they would call their podcast. One of the names they debated was "Inside Out" (listen here).

Which sounds a bit like the name of a kid's show. A colleague of theirs overheard the discussion and could hear the jingle to the non-existent show in his head.

And so - he created it.

For no purpose, no profit, or grand plan. Just because he could and he wanted to, he invested his time and created.


It is part of the reason I added cheesy graphics to this video.

Sometimes you just got to do because you can.

I love the freedom of just producing because the act of CREATING is the magic.