Movement is Medicine

We have all heard it before, but I am hear to tell you there is so much truth to it.

For years and years I have struggled with the effects of fibromyalgia and I have learned the more I move, the less I hurt. Many people who live with fibromyalgia—me included—would probably rather lay on a heating bad and hope the exhausting pain goes away, but the reality is movement will in fact make you feel better.

Since my hip replacement three weeks ago my fibro symptoms have been off the rails—fatigue, pain, misfiring nervous system, extreme intolerance to being cold, Raynauds on overdrive and a general flu like feeling. Add that to the general post op pain of a titanium hip, and it’s a real struggle to move, but I know it is the answer to feeling better.

When we live the yoga lifestyle and endure challenges like this it’s imperative to pull our awareness into the sutras, or principles that enhance how we show up in the world. For examples, living with truth means we listen to our bodies and only do what truthfully feels right. It’s about not stealing from ourselves by overdoing (or under doing) it and taking away from healing process. It’s also about non-harming and being intentional with what we say yes to.

Each day since coming home from the hospital I have made a deliberate and mindful choice to move my body. It may be that my six directions of the spine is my max, or a simpler morning sequence, or I might add onto my physical therapy exercises by grabbing my dumbbells for some upper body endorphins.

Besides the intentional ways to get movement, it’s so important to realize the simple everyday tasks that count towards movement! Think back to your first few days home from surgery, or when you were struggling with illness, and the small victories that came with making your own meal or even showering! I am so thrilled that I am not as exhausted showering and getting dressed as I was just a week ago.

All the ways we navigate our day also count as movement!

  • Showering and getting dressed
  • Preparing an easy meal
  • Walking to the mail box
  • Emptying the dishwasher
  • Doing a load of laundry
  • Making the bed
  • Walking around the yard
  • Tidying up your space
  • A short trip to the market

Of course deliberate and intentional movement is important, but during this recovery time be sure to pat yourself on the back for the small everyday tasks that require movement and congratulate yourself on a job well done. Try to incorporate the yoga principles into your daily life and opt for staying aligned with who you are, and not what you happen to be going through.

You CAN do this and you ARE doing amazing.

Watch this—


With over sixteen years experience, Stacie Wyatt is a E-500 hour Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance, Certified Brain Injury Specialist, Certified Trauma Informed Coach, Life Wellness Coach, Senior YogaFit Instructor, Mind/Body Personal trainer, Stress Reduction and Meditation Instructor, Pilates Instructor, and Barre Instructor. Stacie is also certified in Integrative Movement Therapy™and is also a believer in the power and application of essential oils for health and wellness and proudly shares doTERRA essential oils.

Tips & Tricks for Mindful Healing

How can we maintain our strength and equilibrium in the face of our greatest challenge?

Each morning I sit and read something with the intent to be inspired or at the minimum give me something to ponder throughout the day. This morning I reached for my Yoga 365 book and today’s passage was so aligned with a video I created yesterday talking about the mindful ways we can bring an added element to our healing process. Finding tips and tricks for mindful healing has been my focus this last month.

For me specifically with my recent hip surgery, I am implementing a few strategies that doctors do not necessarily tell you when you are faced with a major surgery. While I greatly appreciate the practical things that a person needs, it is the nuances of daily living that I believe go quite far in the healing process.

Tips and Tricks for Mindful Healing:

Our mindset will greatly influence our mental health during any sort of healing process, whether it is a surgery, an illness or a major life upheaval. These six mindful healing tips are perfect for anyone:

  1. Keeping a daily routine. If you have always been a person who gets up and reads, or meditates, or journals, or prays, then keep doing that. Don’t sacrifice your spiritual practice because your physical body is working hard to improve. Also, if you are a person that gets up every day and puts a little makeup on, then keep doing that. Taking care of yourself and helping yourself to feel somewhat “normal” during this temporary healing time will do wonders for your happiness factor. Finally, getting dressed everyday and getting out of your pajamas (even if you wear comfy house clothes), the simple act of getting up and dressed everyday will send a message to your brain that you are in fact getting better. Plus, you’ll look better and when we look better, we have a tendency to feel better. I am a huge fan of lipstick and mascara and not a single day has passed that I don’t take the five minutes to make myself feel beautiful.
  2. Develop a mindset of gratitude. Each day I spend a few minutes in deep gratitude for the surgeon and for the implant in my body. Even though I still have a lot of pain and mobility is hard, I am mindful each day to thank my body for accepting this new joint and welcoming it into my body. I am grateful for my cells moving around my body to encourage healing. I am grateful for my strong muscles that are working hard to regain their strength to support the new joint. When we shift our mindset from a pain point to a gratitude point, our entire mental outlook can shift. Sure, it would be easy to sit in my 3 days worn pajamas and mope that my body hasn’t healed as fast as what others have, and I could complain that the surgery must have somehow gone wrong, and my immune system is overactive causing extra pain, OR I could embrace this new challenge through the lens of gratitude and be intentional about loving this new body part.
  3. Speak kindly to yourself and others. We have all heard that kindness is the path to a better world. Speaking kindly about yourself and to yourself during this time of vulnerability is so important. Falling into the trap of self-pity, or worse self-defeating language will only slow your progress. For the people who are helping you, they are doing their very best to make sure that you are healing and comfortable and if you are a person who is usually very self-sufficient, it can be emotionally draining on your family and friends to see you in a different way. Be kind and thank them for every small thing that they are now doing for you. We have a tendency to be hardest on ourselves and those closest to us so remembering to speak kindly will be a huge asset to you.
  4. Setting up your space. The doctor will likely give you a few tips to get your home ready for when you come home from surgery–things like remove loose area rugs, move items to waist level, get your medications refilled, have a grabber for picking up dropped items, etc. These are all great and much needed suggestions, however I found a few more things that have helped me feel better. I made sure that the items I use regularly like essential oils, diffusers, herbal teas, supplements, hand lotion, and other self care items are accessible. I created a space in my house specifically for this healing process where I have a comfy chair, a basket of healthy snacks, a stash of essential oils, a diffuser, my favorite electric tea pot, books, journals, fun pens, my iPad, beautiful plants, and plenty of chargers within one room. This eliminates the constant need for someone to run get something for me AND it gives my space the homey and comfortable feel that I like everyday. Imagine trying to heal in a cold, dark, sterile, or dingy environment. Yuck. Make your space pretty and just what YOU like because you are gonna be there a while.
  5. You have to have movement. Any type of movement to get circulation going is so imperative. If you have had hip surgery like me, move your upper body. If you have had shoulder surgery, move your lower body. At the minimum move your spine in all six directions once a day. It literally takes five minutes and will increase circulation, get your chi moving and make you feel good which are all good things when it comes to healing. Movement is medicine.
  6. Start a new hobby. You might be thinking that a new hobby right now is too overwhelming but I am telling you, it will shift your awareness from hurting and not feeling great to something productive and potentially fun. If you have never been a big reader, now is a great time to download your free library app and start borrowing books (yes, even on a small phone this can be enjoyable), or ask to borrow books from friends. Maybe you have always wanted to learn how to knit or crochet…YouTube is filled with tutorials and Amazon delivers yarn and crochet hooks. Perhaps you have been wanting to take up writing your own blog on a topic you are passionate about. What a great time to put your brain on something other than pain. For me, I have enjoyed crocheting, jigsaw puzzles on my iPad, digital planning, and making sourdough anything. The joy factor is increases while I am doing those activities and my mind is less focused on hurting.

And there you have it! These are easy ways to maintain your strength and equilibrium while faced with one of the hardest things you may ever go through. By redirecting my thoughts, speaking kindly, wearing my favorite shade of lipstick and clean clothes everyday, easy movements, eating healthy organic cashews and sipping tea, AND feeding my brain with wholesome hobbies while being SO grateful, I am on my way!

Comparison Is the Thief of Joy

Comparison is the thief of joy.

Theodore Roosevelt

As human beings we are likely to have had a few times in our life where we longed for the greener grass that others seem to have. We might even spend some of our time filled with envy wishing that our experience is different than it is and that others have it better than we do.

When I was a young mom I spent way too many days comparing myself and my kids to others. It was exhausting and I broke free of all of that during my great wake up in my early thirties. I dropped the desire to compare myself with others long ago for the most part, however, major life events typically bring out our vulnerability and we might find ourselves once again looking at other people’s experience and comparing ourselves to them.

This old feeling of comparing myself started to come back lately when it comes to my recent hip replacement surgery. If I had a nickel for everyone who has told me that their 80 year old whoever was walking in a week without a cane I probably wouldn’t have to go back to work. Seriously…how is that useful? Or the stories of young athletes getting back to their sport within weeks. I get it…those miracles and amazing stories do happen and that is awesome, but not everyone has that experience. When I hear these examples it is hard to not compare myself with them and it is something I am working on daily while also finding the opportunity to remind others who share their fast healing stories with me that it isn’s always that way for everyone, although I am thrilled for them.

Awareness is the key to cultivating true compassion but that is another day’s blog post.

Instead of comparing myself to those stories I have decided instead to look for small daily wins and remember that this is a marathon and not a sprint. It might be that showering without any help is my win. Or getting out to my yoga studio to record a session is a win. Maybe making a simple dinner is a win. Definitely the sourdough English muffins this week were a win. ?

If I spent my days comparing myself to others I would lose my joy in those small, yet huge wins.

My surgeon and my physical therapist were great this week at reminding me that my experience is vastly different than most, and the factors that go into my own healing are unique to me, so breathe and be patient and also look for those small wins each day to carry me through until I am back in the “normal” swing of things. And, I am reminding myself that “normal” may look very different for me compared to pre-surgery.

It is natural for people to compare themselves with others but I want to encourage the world to stop doing that. Many times people even compare themselves with me and I try to insist that instead to look at their own gifts and be proud of them. We are all special in some way and while it may seem to some that I have myself all together, I really don’t. I work at it each and every day.

Find the joy in YOU and in your own small victories. Comparing yourself will definitely steal your joy and life is simply too short to live a joy-less life.

I have also learned that although the grass may appear greener, there is always some other species of “weeds” that have taken space in the seemingly green space and my own green is perfect for me, weeds and all.


Stacie believes that it is her life purpose to share the gift of Yoga with anyone who is willing to say yes. In addition to raising a family and being an advocate for those with disabilities, Stacie is founder of Embracing Spirit Yoga which specializes in bringing adaptive Yoga into community centers and rehabilitation clinics. Bringing her depth of compassion to the mat–or the chair–she offers students the opportunity to grow as an individual in all aspects of their life.

With over sixteen years experience, Stacie Wyatt is an experienced 500 hour Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance, Certified Brain Injury Specialist, Certified Trauma Informed Coach, Life Wellness Coach, Senior YogaFit Instructor, Mind/Body Personal trainer, Stress Reduction and Meditation Instructor, Pilates Instructor, and Barre Instructor. Stacie is also certified in Integrative Movement Therapy™and is also a believer in the power and application of essential oils for health and wellness and proudly shares doTERRA essential oils.

Stacie brings her personal life experience of raising a daughter with a disability and over 12 years working in special education to her everyday Yoga classes.

Valentine’s Love Blend

These make fantastic little valentine gifts for your loved ones as well as you. These are packed with powerful essential oils and rose quartz. Plus, I add a few rose petals for the pretty sake. Give, get and share other people in your life.??

Rose: Opens the heart chakra and allows you to feel unconditional love. Creates a sense of well-being and calmness while awakening your ability for self-compassion, nurturing, and love.

Lemon: Opens the heart chakra to self-love and self-nurturing. lightens while uplifting your spirit and bringing clarity into your life.

Neroli: A natural tranquilizer and regulator of the nervous system that opens the heart chakra, uplifts your spirit, and encourages confidence, joy, and peace.

Marjoram: Restores warmth, self-compassion, and self-nurturing when feeling lonely or isolated.

Lavender: Helps you to relax, let go of the stress, and release fear, which fosters connect with the heart center and opens you up to more love.

Jasmine: Uplifting and joyous oil that balances the emotional system, soothes anxiety, and helps with depression and apathy.

Geranium: This emotional healing oil restores confidence and trust in others. It can help to heal a broken heart and open one up to love.

Ylang Ylang: This is a powerful remedy for the heart and releasing trauma from the past. This oil helps to release bottled up emotions that weigh heavy on the heart which allows for a more playful, carefree, emotionally connected and loving experience of life.

Tranquility Blend (Serenity): Includes Lavender Flower, Cedarwood, Ho Wood Leaf, Ylang Ylang Flower, Marjoram Leaf, Roman Chamomile Flower, Vetiver Root, Vanilla Bean Absolute, Hawaiian Sandalwood. Encourages individuals to first reconnect with themselves and discover peace that lies within, and then to reconnect with the humanity in others. This brings a calm, tranquil, peaceful, relaxed, compassionate and connection person.

Rose quartz: Rose Quartz is the stone of universal love. It restores trust and harmony in relationships, encouraging unconditional love. Rose Quartz purifies and opens the heart at all levels to promote love, self-love, friendship, deep inner healing and feelings of peace. Calming and reassuring, it helps to comfort in times of grief. Rose Quartz dispels negativity.

Unconditional

Ready to get yours? Each of these special bottles contain a lot of very pricey essential oils. They smell amazing and I get compliments almost every day just how good I smell.


Stacie believes that it is her life purpose to share the gift of Yoga with anyone who is willing to say yes. In addition to raising a family and being an advocate for those with disabilities, Stacie is founder of Embracing Spirit Yoga which specializes in bringing adaptive Yoga into community centers and rehabilitation clinics. Bringing her depth of compassion to the mat–or the chair–she offers students the opportunity to grow as an individual in all aspects of their life.

With over sixteen years experience, Stacie Wyatt is an experienced 500 hour Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance, Certified Brain Injury Specialist, Certified Trauma Informed Coach, Life Wellness Coach, Senior YogaFit Instructor, Mind/Body Personal trainer, Stress Reduction and Meditation Instructor, Pilates Instructor, and Barre Instructor. Stacie is also certified in Integrative Movement Therapy™and is also a believer in the power and application of essential oils for health and wellness and proudly shares doTERRA essential oils.

Stacie brings her personal life experience of raising a daughter with a disability and over 12 years working in special education to her everyday Yoga classes.

An Old Pro

I am an old pro when it comes to crutches and my beautifully flawed hip that I was born with has done her job. Monday I say farewell to her and welcome a new hip joint. This will be my fourth hip surgery on my left hip and I am ready to be without pain.

My mindset is good and my peacefulness comes knowing that my surgeon is super skilled and compassionate.

I am grateful for all the love and support I have in my life. I am going to practice big time equanimity throughout this process and take what comes with grace and ease. I am also taking two months off of work to focus on me.

Remember what I need the most is an occasionally americano dropped at my door and plenty of good vibes. Stay tuned for some updates along the way and how I am using this time to heal and be super productive.

Disappointment

“Disappointment is a stepping stone to resilience. It toughens you up and prepares you for the challenges that lie ahead.”

Michelle Obama

Disappointment is such a strange thing. In my mind I know that all disappointments lead to some sort of lesson or growth, if we can choose to look for it. It may be that we learn our own value, how to walk away, or even deep acceptance. Regardless of the lesson, it usually comes after experiencing some version of disappointment.

Most people already know of some pretty major disappointments that I’ve experienced in my life that have led me to greatness. I’ve taken one of the biggest disappointments in my life and turned it in to my purpose and my passion.

What a lot of people don’t know is that for over 20 years I have struggled with the disappointment of my body. I have sat in pain management clinics for that duration trying spinal injections, varieties of medications, alternative methods, and eventually facing the pain with resiliency and movement. The disappointment fueled me to be stronger and stronger. It guided me to places I didn’t know I had in me. I faced the disappointment of many diagnosis with the fire to fight back.

The early weeks of January 2016 I experienced a new pain. A horrific pain. Within a few weeks I learned I had torn tissue in my hip. Three surgeries over the course of 18 months, and once again I am ten days away from yet another hip surgery.

I have needed this surgery for over a year but put it off last February because the timing wasn’t right. It’s right now.

In my preparation to get my body at its best form and fullest strength going into this big one, I have been consistently strength training five times a week for over two years. I have refined my muscles and gained strength and confidence.

But, disappointment shows up again.

The familiar pain that grinds deeps into the lower back. The pain that prevents movement. The pain that makes my breath short and shallow. The pain that has brought me to the hospital twice unable to move in the past. The pain that makes my world shatter.

Not now. It can’t be now. I need to be strong. I need to be healthy. I need to not hurt this much.

I need my back to settle down so I’m strong for my new hip. I need this disappointment to move along.

Or, is this disappointment inviting more resilience than I knew I had? Is it showing me what I have in me to face the challenge?

Maybe it’s both. I need to not hurt like this AND I need to be reminded of my strength and ability to overcome.

Healthy Breakfast Cookies

I am trying so hard to eat better and breakfast is just not my thing. Since I love cookies so much I whipped these up and get a little goodness mid morning.

So easy!

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • ? cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 ½ cups rolled oats
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 2/3 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 drop wild orange essential oil*

Bake for 9 to 12 minutes at 350, or until the cookies appear set up. Enjoy!

*be sure your essential oils are pure and safe to ingest. My preference is always doTERRA.

Hello 53

In a tradition I typically save for my personal journal on the eve of my birthday, I usually write a letter to myself to celebrate, and encourage the constant evolving that I choose to do. These are the words that came today as I reflected on my year.

Dear beautiful self,

Another year wiser and with a few more wrinkles, I’ve seen you grow in your willingness to reach out and ask (and receive) help. I’ve seen you overcome challenges that were unexpected, and do it with grace and gratitude. I watched you grow your business and become more confident and more self-assured in what you’re here to do. I’ve seen you stay consistent with your strength training program, sometimes battling the pain like wielding a sword against an enemy. I’ve seen you be generous and kind to those who may not have always deserved it. I watched you demonstrate bravery in extremely challenging situations.

As you continue to age, I see you learning to ride the waves of the process of the body changing. I see you worry about the things that you may not have control over and I hope that you remember that like fine wine and good cheese, the aging process just gets better.

I hope that this coming year you will continue to embrace all of you. You will navigate what life hands you with tremendous courage, and also an openness to staying with vulnerability. Your determination to find equanimity—or the balance between effort and ease—will be something that becomes quite easy for you if you stay the course.

Believe in yourself, beautiful one.

Love, Me

Follow me for more goodness!

A Guide to Yin—Getting Comfortable in the Uncomfortable

As we look to create space for ourselves, discovering Yin style yoga can be a huge awakening. For many of us our constantly committed schedules leaves very little space for anything else. It is also a practice that encourages a person to get comfortable with the uncomfortable.

I am personally devoted to changing this in my life starting this year. I am seeking the fine balance between effort and ease. To do this, I am being deliberate either my choices and incorporating Yin yoga into my practice and teachings.

Yin Yoga is a style of yoga that involves long holds in various seated and reclined poses to access deeper layers of fascia and to quiet the mind. Yin yoga also requires conscious and controlled breathing, often emphasized by relaxed belly breathing. This intimate practice encourages one to connect with their physical self, emotions, and sensations. It’s a simple practice with profound therapeutic benefits for longevity, vitality, flexibility, emotional resilience and much more.

There are three main tenets of Yin Yoga:

  • find your edge where you can feel the stretch, but without straining
  • remain still
  • allow yourself to stay here for some time—typically three to five minutes.

Three to five minutes seems easy, right?

My top five Yin style postures are:

  • Butterfly: From a seated position, draw the soles of the feet together and slide them away from you creating a “diamond-like” shape of the legs. Fold forward, allowing the spine to round and the head to drop towards the heels. Rest the hands on the floor or on your feet. Hold for 3-6 minutes. TARGET AREA: Inner thighs and groins, outer hips, spine. TIP: sit on the edge of a blanket to elevate the hips and potentially increase the sensation in the hips and/or assist with the flexion of the pelvis. Having the hips higher than the knees can be helpful in the event of sciatica.
  • Melting Heart: Start on your hands and knees, and walk the hands forward, allowing the chest and head to drop towards the floor, keeping the thighs more or less vertical. Hold for 3-4 minutes. TARGET AREA: Chest, spine, arms and shoulders. TIP: pad the knees with a blanket; experiment with the angle of the arms if shoulder flexion is compromised.
  • Lizard lunge: From hands and knees, place your right hand to the center of your mat and step your right foot outside the right hand. Keeping the back knee down, slide it behind the line of the hip, or back far enough to potentially observe sensation in the front of the thigh. Back toes may be untucked or tucked. Hold for 2-3 minutes. TARGET AREA: Hip flexors, quadriceps of back leg, inner groin, hamstrings and outer hip of front leg. TIP: pad the knees with a blanket; remember to play the edge appropriately – this can be a powerful pose!
  • Bananasana: From your back, bend your knees and plant the feet to the floor. Pick up the hips and move them to the right side of your mat, keeping the sacrum in contact with the floor. Straighten the legs toward the left corner of the mat, and shift the upper body toward the left, creating a “banana-like” shape with the body. Raise the arms overhead, elbows bent or straight, with option of clasping wrists or forearms. Hold for 3-6 minutes (repeat other side). TARGET AREA: Side body, especially the side waist. TIP: explore crossing the ankles – inner ankle over outer or outer ankle over inner – and determine which, if any, is preferred based on what you feel in the target area.
  • Spinal Twist: Lying on your back, draw your knees into your chest and roll to your right side. Peel the left arm open, allowing the upper body to rest toward the floor, arm extended to the left. Hold for 3-6 minutes (repeat other side). TARGET AREA: Spine, Chest/Arms. TIP: Explore variations of the arms, and turn of the head to influence other potential target areas of the upper body.

Ready to join me in slowing down and getting comfortable with the uncomfortable? Try this practice at home.

Beginnings

Imagine a self paced program that is on your own time that includes yoga, mindfulness, wellness coaching, intention setting, self care and much more delivered right to your inbox?

Beginnings is for you are wanting to make changes to your life and need a little push and motivation.

It’s time for you to begin.

It’s time for YOU.

Starting in January this three day program will be available for YOU. The content is yours forever and you can revisit it any time you feel like you need to begin again. That happens to all of us, believe me.

This program called Beginnings is well explained in this short video.

About Stacie

Stacie believes that it is her life purpose to share the gift of Yoga with anyone who is willing to say yes. In addition to raising a family and being an advocate for those with disabilities, Stacie is founder of Embracing Spirit Yoga which specializes in bringing adaptive Yoga into community centers and rehabilitation clinics. Bringing her depth of compassion to the mat–or the chair–she offers students the opportunity to grow as an individual in all aspects of their life.

With over sixteen years experience, Stacie Wyatt is an experienced 500 hour Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance, Certified Brain Injury Specialist, Certified Trauma Informed Coach, Life Wellness Coach, Senior YogaFit Instructor, Mind/Body Personal trainer, Stress Reduction and Meditation Instructor, Pilates Instructor, and Barre Instructor. Stacie is also certified in Integrative Movement Therapy™and is also a believer in the power and application of essential oils for health and wellness and proudly shares doTERRA essential oils.

Stacie brings her personal life experience of raising a daughter with a disability and over 12 years working in special education to her everyday Yoga classes.