inner lives are sacred

My ears perked up when I heard her say, “You must nourish and protect your inner life.” She definitely was telling the entire damn truth. I knew all too well the value of being within oneself; I had learned self-love the hard way. What I learned the hard way is that our inner lives are sacred. It is on the inside where we sow our seeds, figuratively and literally even if you are not female bodied, it is on the outside where we harvest everything we’ve planted.

It is not possible to control the outside of yourself until you have mastered your breathing space. It is not possible to change anything until you understand the substance you wish to change. ― Jeanette Winterson

It wasn’t until I repeatedly, found myself standing in the ashes of what I once thought would feed my future, with nothing but a fistful of tears in my hands that I stopped focusing on the outside and went inside. I instinctively and as an act of self-preservation, went inside of myself to do the work that would ensure that no matter what life threw my way, that there would always be a positive to feed my soul and help me live another day. It was so much more than just thinking positive thoughts, doing acts of self-love, being with my emotions or focusing on myself; this was a new way of living thriving.

My tips for nourishing and protecting a sacred inner life that helps you thrive in today’s world.

  • Nourish Your Inner Life.

Feed your inner life the things that allow it to dream then expand. Nourishing your inner life requires being connected to the ebb flow of energy within you. For me, this diet mostly consists of music, books, relaxing seaside/mountainside getaways, moments of silence and conversations with people that listen without influencing but that gently nudge me towards the right decisions. My diet isn’t always low-key; who doesn’t eat something exotic or spicy once in awhile? Sometimes to nourish my inner life, I have to get my body moving vigorously. Yes, sometimes I feel the need to feast on action; running, biking, hiking and especially all things dancing. When I am in need of active nourishment, it also involves spending more time than usual around large groups of like-minded people, talking and laughing loud, sipping on our favorite drinks in a overcrowded bar or dancing the night away as sweat drips off our energized bodies. Just like the Earth has seasons our bodies have cycles, even if you are not female bodied, your soul has to adjust to the season within.

Fill yourself with all the delicious things you love and that inner voice will reward you with healthier thoughts and conversations that lead to bigger dreams. Feeding your inner life the best guarantees outer actions in a positive direction. Staying focused within, knowing exactly what kind of loving you need to keep you moving forward and balanced is the key to letting go of worry, struggle and pain. Believe me, as a person that spent too many years fighting depression, I know all too well that if you don’t feed yourself exactly what you need when you need it your inner world becomes a hell and your inner self an abused abusive demon.

You have to remember that no matter where you go there you always are. You cannot run from yourself. Your work, your lovers, your friends, your family, your parents…nobody can save you, except for you. You are the hero in your story. You have to be everything to yourself and guess what that means? That you have to feed yourself and then you have to protect yourself.

  • Protect Your Inner Life.

Protecting your inner life is where you’ll begin to get your hands dirty, how your real strength will emerge and when you’ll find out if you are cut out to be a hero. Not everyone is cut out for this; even the ones that are have moments when they can’t save themselves. Usually, if you can’t protect your inner life from other people it is because you are having trouble protecting it from yourself. Are you currently your own worst enemy? Focus on nourishing your inner life and do nothing but that.

Sometimes the only way you can protect your inner life is by doing nothing other than nourishing it. This is an especially radical subversive act when you are a parent but if you don’t provide yourself with what you need consistently more than likely you are not showing up fully as a parent. You might be doing a great job at being a parent but you are absolutely drained, exhausted and many times even resentful because you have been everything to your children without first being something to yourself. If you are married or in a relationship, these can also apply to you. Protect your inner life from yourself by doing less of the things you have to and more of the things you need to.

Too often protecting your inner life means shutting life suckers and energy vampires out of your life. As a High Priestess of Intuition, I often set bridges on fire just to keep people as far as possible from all that is good within me. Nourishing my inner life has given me a keen sensitivity for seeing which people have pure intentions and which ones have arrived to drain me. If you find yourself often complaining about someone in your life it is probably time for them to go. Cut that person off, tactfully is always best, then figure out what about you they were reflecting that you need to work on. These days whenever a person rubs me the wrong way, I first look really close to see what about them is triggering me. If following the trigger leads me to work that I have to do within myself, I figure out if I can do the work while this person is still in my life or if them constantly triggering me would hinder that work. Depending on that answer I decide whether I should burn a bridge or allow the person all the way up to my moat. If following the trigger shows me absolutely nothing that I need to work on and this person is still triggering me they always go and I don’t even care if I do it tactfully.

You have too much to fight for to wait for a savior or the ideal conditions to live the life you dream of… nourish and protect your inner life… make it hard for life’s circumstances to knock you down. Do not lay down on the inside!

xo, Anaín

self-love starts with positive thinking

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I hope that you are loving yourself today whether you have a special partner in your life to add to that love or not. Self-love truly is the foundation for all other loves but when we are feeling blue, depressed or irritated by yet another holiday that reminds us of our loneliness, we might not want to hear shit about self-love. Well, at least I didn’t back in the day. Self-love on Valentine’s Day?!

The blues, depression and loneliness are things that I know very well; they have been a part of my life journey since before I can remember. For me *being* happy is often a daily battle, which is why I know that this daily routine becomes extremely unbearable during holidays. A holiday celebrating love towards the end of the most depressing season never really brought me any joy instead it highlighted my blues even more.

Then I learned that making a point to think positive allows me to love myself more making the trying times and silly expectations of the holidays easier to deal with.

When I am busy focusing on positive thinking loneliness is less of an issue, holidays don’t bother me as much and I am more capable of being there for my family and friends that need someone to lean on. Choosing to think positive has taught me how to love me and has opened the doors for me to also love we.

Today, I felt that the best thing I could do to show you my love and gratitude for reading and being a part of my journey was to share with you three things that help me love myself more.

Self-love starts with positive thinking…


almost a year ago

What follows is the transcript of my journal entry from December 31, 2010. I have not written in my journal since that day because instead I wrote here. I guess I am sharing it because it was this journal entry that gave me the strength to share more than I thought was possible with strangers.

I was very weak then but not so much these days. The power I have found in candor is endless and incredible. If it hurts my advice to you is write it down and let it go.


the mask of: perfectionism

I once was a very secure and extremely confident woman; that was when I worked in the operating room as a surgical technician. I knew my job and nobody could tell me otherwise because some of the hardest-to-work-with-couldn’t-tolerate-anyone surgeons requested me to be the one in on cases. I could go from working on the most urgent complicated abdominal aortic aneurysm to the simplest Urology case. People respected me but most importantly I respected myself. I was so secure in my abilities that I was pretty damn near perfect at my job.

I worked the shifts that many other people didn’t want or feared like overnight weekends. People didn’t want and feared the overnight weekend shifts because any case could walk in the door and there was nobody else in house to back you up. Technicians with less experience or those less secure about their skills would comment about how happy they were that I liked such a shitty shift because they no longer had to worry about it popping up on their schedules. Others would tell me that they didn’t like doing that shift because it always seemed like you had to make do forging through cases while the scheduled cases during regular hours were more ideal circumstances to operate under because everything you needed would be there. No making do. (more…)

my privacy.

I am a mostly open book.

Mostly open.

Yet, I am sometimes a very private person.

This is a list of things that I am private about and why.

  • My books – I collect books, stilettos and memories. I LOVE showing off shoes that I buy. I regularly write about most of my life. My books though aren’t something I like to share with people. Might be all the books that I have let friends borrow that they never returned that caused me to stop sharing. Might be the looks that people have given me when they see what I am reading. Might be how unnatural it felt to use Goodreads. Yup. I think it was that! Seeing everything that people were reading made me feel like a Peeping Tom. Books are an escape for me. They give me life. They bring me joy. I don’t want to share that private world of joy with people. I want to keep all the euphoria that books bring me to myself. Yes, I want to keep silent about most of the books that are a part of my life.
  • My home – I don’t let too many people INTO my home. If I invite you into my home then I really respect you and consider you a trusted friend. I won’t let just anyone into my home because frankly I don’t want just any energy being brought into my home. The more I write the more I become protective of the energy inside my house. I no longer host regular dinner parties. I am becoming so protective of my home that when friends talk about visiting me here I become distant or just flat out say I don’t want company. I’ve even lied to a few friends because I NEED a private place…just me, the family I created, and our dog. That’s all I can handle here right now. I’m to the point where I won’t even Twitpic photos taken in the house unless they are of my kitchen or our homeschool classroom area. Yes. I. Am. Weird.
  • Secrets friends share – I am most private about the secrets that my friends have shared with me. I guard these more than my books or even my home. I have become a bottomless vault of secrets where my friends make frequent deposits. These secrets I guard with my life! I am unwilling to share with one friend details of my friendship with another friend. I am also quick to get rid of you as a friend if you tell secrets friends have told you or if you tell me details of your friendships with others that I maybe shouldn’t know. Strong lasting friendships are the only way I could get through life so I believe in showing my friends respect by keeping their secrets until I die.

I am not private about much but what I am private about I am REALLY private about.

Every woman should be entitled to some privacy especially ones that share mostly everything.

xo, Anaín

i don’t want to talk. i just want to do.

Throughout my life I have had periods during which I have not only wanted but I have also needed to completely pull away from almost everyone in my life. Right now this need to free myself from other people includes distancing myself from my mother. I am not proud of the fact that for the last several weeks I haven’t kept in regular contact with my mother. I am also somewhat ashamed that I have not been keeping up with my closest friends either. I don’t want to talk to anyone really. It isn’t a personal thing. It isn’t them. It REALLY is me! It is really me in such a great way. (more…)

power + grace of: aging

When I was a child my mother almost killed me with her death-ray glare when her and a friend were discussing age and I confirmed that mom was twenty-eight. After her friend left my mother gave me a detailed lecture about why women don’t and shouldn’t reveal their age. She went on to tell me that when women reach a certain age it is best to skim a few years off the top. She wasn’t even thirty yet and she thought that women in their late twenties should be subtracting years? I didn’t understand it then and I still don’t understand it now why women conceal their age. (more…)

thankful for new beginnings

This week is going to be one crazy roller coaster ride because we officially start back up with school. We aren’t new to homeschooling but we are not experts either. This will be my third year teaching my older two and the second year teaching all three boys. Last year was incredibly hard. We started off well. We had lofty goals set but we fell very short of them. It was like every single thing that could possibly go wrong did. Teaching isn’t something that I ever saw myself doing. I especially would not have thought I’d be teaching my three sons at home. Long ago, I thought that homeschooling was for weirdos that were well just weird. Just like with everything else that I have ended up doing since I became a mother – a choice here, a situation there and another choice led me to doing something I never even thought I could, would or should do. (more…)