The Universe is Always Supporting Me

The Universe is Always Supporting Me

The Universe is Always Supporting Me

Originally posted on April 23, 2020

This pandemic has tested my spiritual work. I struggled the last few weeks to get back to myself. I have been (as most of us have been) going up and down in the feelings spectrum.

Angry. Sad. Depressed. Anxious. Scared. Fearful. Optimistic. Happy. Loved. Supported. 

I know we are not alone in this. But we all  feel like our situation is different than the next persons’. And that is where anxiety takes hold like a cowboy on a horse ready to ride off into the sunset. Yehawwww. You are now under my control, anxiety replies, cunningly. I respond,  ‘Hello Anxiety, I see you. Hello Fear, would you like some tea with your cookies?’

Another great tactic, call you fear by its name. ‘Hi Fear, I see you behind the door. Come on out so I can deal with you.’

Since my last post, I have canceled my inaugural June Tuscany Retreat. It was a hard decision, but it was the right one. There was no way I would’ve felt comfortable to host six people in Tuscany. As much as I wanted to. 

I have had more stupid petty fights with my husband. They all end with a hug, thankfully. However, all of this anger is testing my spiritual growth. Basically saying to me, ‘You have more shit to work through, Katie.’ Childhood traumas, inner child issues and all of my anxiety and fears that have been hanging over me like a rain cloud for thirty-nine years. There is so much I need to let go of and forgive and stop apologizing for being the person I am.

The world needs me just the way I am.

I also created a YouTube channel for the yoga practices I have created for myself and clients. I love this creative outlet of developing my style of teaching yoga. I never liked seeing or hearing myself on camera, but here I am being me, on camera, with that voice and my disheveled hair. I am ok with it. I am proud of what I have created. Milly, my cat, has made a few guest appearances, mostly with her sitting in front of my iPad or licking her lady bits for all of YouTube to see. 

Meditation has been a daily activity for me. If I don’t have time to meditate during the day (lie, I always have time) I create art with my new set of paints. It is meditative for me. 

Today in meditation, I asked the universe what it thought about traveling to Italy this year. I got a clear response. I announced in my recent newsletter that I will still keep my Christmas in Florence Retreat on the website until I have a strong sign that it won’t happen. I am very much ok with it not running. Safety first.

My intention for this retreat is to share my beloved city to new travelers, yogis, meditators who want to rent a gorgeous apartment in the historic city center of Florence. I want to help all my friends who work with tourists. I want to give back. I want to bring them to my friend’s small vineyard in Chianti. I want to use my friend Max’s drivers to pick up my customers from the airport. I want to help my dear friend with her handmade jewelry business by hiring her to do a jewelry making class for us.

I want to help with all my heart and soul. 

My answer from my meditation was a maybe this retreat will run looking face  for December, but then the universe energetically pointed to my Florence Retreat in May and was nodding its head violently up and down to say,

THAT IS WHEN YOU ARE BRINGING PEOPLE TO FLORENCE. MAY 2021.

I always pick an oracle card or two after I meditate to ask the universe “to reveal to me what I need to know”. I picked Lord Ganesh, Infinite Abundance. Underneath the picture of the elephant headed god it reads: Obstacles are being removed. Spiritual support and connections are increasing. 

I totally feel this shift of connection and spiritual support. It is true, if after all this time in our homes we didn’t somehow go deeper within ourselves, then it was time wasted. I definitely have realized how much my spiritual work is needed to sustain my mindset for the future.

Something stuck with me in the extended message of Lord Ganesh:

It’s important at this time to move beyond the limitations of ‘it’s not meant to be’ and focus on ‘if this is for my highest good then the universe will take me there safely.’

Yes! I keep telling myself ‘if it’s meant to be, it will run’. 

However, the story needs to change now.

I am declaring it now:

If running the December retreat in Florence is for my highest good then the universe will take me there safely.

Keeping connecting to your higher self and all your queries, questions, uncertainties will be answered  and the universe will reveal to you if it is for your highest good. 

What are you working on spiritually for yourself?

Love & Light,

Kate

This Too Shall Pass

This Too Shall Pass

This Too Shall Pass

Originally posted on March 13, 2020

This too shall pass. Andra’ tutto bene. Everything will be fine. In this time of uncertainty, we rush to find certainty in life. We rush for supplies. We rush to protect loved ones. We rush to assumptions. We rush to the news. Too much rushing. Too much chaos. 

This is a perfect time to understand how much power we have as humans to change the story. Yes, the TV is creating more anxiety. Why not turn it off? Perhaps play a board game with your child, friend, roommate, partner. Live in the present moment. How does that sound? This is all we have right now. The Present Moment.

Take this time to connect with your spiritual self. Your higher self has already found a way to deal with this. Ask him or her. Talk to your spirit guides and know that they are on your side. 

Change the story by changing the thoughts in your mind. Did you know you have the choice of picking your thoughts? Your ego dictates a lot but you have the power to steer clear of the negative, fear-based thoughts. Like a friend said to me this week “No fear-based thought will change the outcome”. Read that again. You imagining what could happen is not helping and will not change how the outcome develops. 

Another dear friend mentioned this after my class today, “We are going for a ride like we are about to get on a rollercoaster”. When waiting to get on a rollercoaster you have butterflies in your stomach, anticipating the twists and turns and upside-down movement, but until you get on the rollercoaster you can’t really know how it will be. Right? Your mind is always preparing you for the fight or flight mode. 

We must be vigilant to take the proper precautions and that is all. Don’t do what I did yesterday, watching and reading everything people are saying about this pandemic. Hell, I did it earlier today as well. IT DOES NOT HELP.

Take a walk. Write in your journal. Binge-watch your favorite funny show. Read that book you have been meaning to read. Connect more with your children. Connect more with yourself. 

One of the exercises I like to do when my mind starts turning negative and fear-based is the Choose Again Method.

  1. Notice the fearful thought. We are being consumed by fear and uncertainty and pressure. Be gentle with yourself and become aware of the thought. It is normal that you have those thoughts. Now notice where you are feeling this fear-based thought. I feel it in my chest and my breathing starts to speed up. Give yourself a chance to pinpoint where the fear wants to set up camp. Start to breathe deeply into that part of your body. Honor the feeling and the thought. 
  2. Forgive the thought. The second step is to forgive yourself for having the thought. We want to forgive the thought that makes us obsessed, panicked and anxiety-ridden. Maybe we are a healthy person and are obsessing about being unwell. Just forgive yourself for going over the top in panic. Simply say, “I forgive this thought.” Abraham-Hicks says a belief is just a thought that you keep thinking. If you keep a thought on repeat that thought eventually becomes your reality. There is a serious pandemic going on. It is how we choose to perceive our reality that is important. You can choose the how of your experience. We can then release our thoughts by forgiving them. 
  3. Choose again. The third step is to choose again. Maybe you have a thought like this: “I’m going to get the coronavirus and I’m terrified.” Once you have witnessed the thought, forgive the thought, next is to choose the next best feeling thought. It could be something like this: “I am healthy right now.” Or “I am taking the proper precautions”.

One by one, reach for the thoughts that make you feel better. Whatever good feeling thoughts keep reaching for them to get you out of the chaotic mindset. 


We have the ability to change the story for us. One by one, we can choose a better feeling thought and keep the positivity flowing from one corner of the world to the other. We will get through this.

In Italian, Andra’ tutto bene

Self-care is key here. Meditate. Read. Take a bath. Workout. Move your body. Eat a healthy diet. Hydrate. Use this time to finally take care of yourself. Truly. Madly. Deeply. Inside and out.

What are some self-care steps you can start implementing into your life?

Tell me in the comments.

Love & Light,

Kate

Connections

Connections

Connections

,,edOriginally posted March 2 2020

I was always told as a young child that I was an old soul. I felt it too. I have connected well with older adults when I was younger. I loved their stories most of all. I am enthralled by stories. Recently, a student of mine was telling me about her time in Russia right after the Soviet Union fell. Oh, the stories she had. About spies, not knowing where the taxi would take her, the people she met in the war-torn country. I mean it felt like a book to be read. And she needed to be the writer of that book. 

My grandfather, Papa as he was called, had the most AMAZING stories of the war and his travels to Italy and then England where he met my Nana. There was something about his stories. I felt like I was there with him. I listened intently to every single detail. Laughed along with him when there was a punchline, I was always connected to him energetically when these stories came up. After a while, I remembered every single one, because he would repeat the same ones as he got older. I didn’t mind though because he was a great storyteller. I miss those stories to this day. 

I had a professor in college that lured me into his stories of philosophers, artists of many years ago. The way he taught was a sight. He would walk around the room like he was an actor on stage. Certain points he would lean on to the wall and lift his leg up to be dramatic. You had to be there. I don’t remember all his stories and lessons but I do remember how he made me feel. I was emotional connected to his storytelling. Once I found Dr. Poling, I made sure he was my professor for the rest of my years at Saint Mary’s University. Every semester, I got him as a teacher of something. Philosophy of art, Intro to Philosophy, any of his classes I signed up for. He even created a class just for me during my senior year in school. We studied Rene Descartes. To this day, I confide in him through email. Oh, the stories he still tells. It’s like I never left and our friendship still starts where we left off. The best feeling in the world to have a connection with someone who inspires you to be better, do better and always is on your side even when you can’t see or hear him. 

At this stage in my life, I crave connections. REAL connections with people. My tribe is out there somewhere I know. I have found some of you but I hope to connect with more people each and every year. 

I have no doubt that this post will be sent out to the universe to bring more people like me to me who will be my kindred spirits. I encourage anyone who would like to connect, comment below.

A quote that I like referring to your tribe is: 

 

“Set your life on fire. Seek those who fan your flames.”

-Rumi

Light and Love,
Katie 

Following the Wrong Path

Following the Wrong Path

Following the Wrong Path

Originally posted Feb 29 2020

There have been times in the past where I felt I was just going where the money was. What I mean is, I was following jobs that promised me money but it was clearly not what I was called to do. It was in front of me saying ‘hey I have a lot of money to pay you to do this job’.

Has anyone else felt this pull?

This pull to do a job, a task, an opportunity that entices you with money. But the task, job, opportunity itself does not resonate with you. 

I have struggled with this pull all my life. It is obvious when I look back at all the jobs I have had. From a well-paid call center job to an English teaching job where I had to drive so far to make money. I know this idea of pursuing jobs for money has been ingrained in me. As most ideas in our lives become conditioned into our brains from our families even from our ancestors.

Think about how your grandparents grew up and how their parents lived their lives. Those ideas on surviving through the hard times of the past, get passed down from generation to generation energetically, physically and behaviorally. 

Like the famous quote, ‘Show me the money’ from the movie Jerry Maguire, if you don’t enjoy the job that you are asking to ‘show you the money’, you will never be in alignment with your purpose. FYI, Your higher self is not and will NEVER be focused on the money.

We follow that path out of fear. Fear we won’t pay the bills. Fear we won’t be able to be happy with less. We are steered towards the easy way. Where can I work and just make money to feed myself and my family? The necessities of life will be fulfilled with this job. We don’t feel that if we step out of the comfort of a 9 to 5 job that we could survive. If we start our own business or taking the chance and moving to another country to experience the world, we believe we will inevitably fail. Because really, who does that? Society tells you that. The fear is evident whenever you go against the norm.

Nobody wants to feel that pain of failure or loss of failing at a business or coming back home after living abroad.  That feeling of going backward or losing money or flat out not being happy anymore, makes our mind go to that state of failure.

Think about it. Everyone who has started a business has failed. Everyone who has moved abroad eventually moves back home. It doesn’t mean that you aren’t moving forward. The fact that you even tried is something big in and of itself. The idea of failing is inevitably going to happen, but that is how you grow and evolve. 

Some myths that come up in my mind about taking the leap: 

It won’t work for me as it did for them, they were successful. 

I probably won’t do well.

I will lose money.

I won’t have any customers.

Someone is already doing it better, why should I try?

Who wants to work with me?

What happens when our thoughts start to take the negative exit of ‘I am not good enough’?

We start working at jobs where it doesn’t resonate with our beings. We take jobs that give us money only. No peace of mind, no joy, no encouragement to change. We stay in a place where it is comfortable. We don’t think about ourselves but think about providing for our family and lose sight of what is right for us because it is easier.

You tell this safe story: 

No one will judge me if I stay where I am. I won’t have to explain myself if I stay here. I don’t like confrontation so I won’t express my ideas in this meeting. 

We end up shortchanging ourselves just to stay safe and comfortable. 

What would it look like if we showed up in the arena? What if we showed up and told our story? What if we took a chance on ourselves? What if YOUR story is what someone needs to hear right now? What if what you are offering, for example, a yoga retreat, a therapy session or simply taking someone through meditation, is something that someone needs from you? Would you pursue that need? 

I am telling you that what you want to share with the world is needed. The world needs you! Don’t hold back in what truly makes your heart sing. I am telling you from experience.

For years, I have been following the norm of working the 9 to 5 and following the road that promised money at the end, not prosperity just money. Not happiness or joy, just money. There is a difference.

All those jobs and careers I followed because of the money turned out to be a burden. It turned me into an angry person. I noticed how I treated the people around me. I was irritable, annoyed, picked fights with my husband. I was not happy at all levels. 

Choose to be happy.

Choose to follow your path.

Choose to be yourself.

You have the power.

Because you are in the arena, taking the punches and jabs from life and you are daring to shine your light for all to see. Shine your light because when you do that, others will see it and want to shine just as bright as you. 

Our retreats are created with love and light, helping people find their purpose and stick to telling their story and shining their light for all to see. I hope you join us!

Love & Light,

Kate

You Only Live Once

You Only Live Once

You Only Live Once

Originally posted Feb 28 2020

I am realizing that a loved one might not be here much longer. My grandma, Nana, has been a part of my life for my 38 years on earth. I am beyond lucky to have her still with me. She has been my rock through hard times. She has energetically sent bad vibes to people who have wronged me. Most importantly she is my link to my favorite place on earth, Italy.

Nana was born in a small town called Farneta in the region of Emilia Romagna. Born before World War II, she had a hard upbringing. Her idea of Italy is completely different than mine. She grew up in a world where war was in her backyard, famine, and uncertainty. She never experienced the Italy I know and love. I remember her first response when I told her I was going to study abroad in Florence in 2002. 

“Why would you want to go there?”

All I could respond with was “because I want to learn more about my heritage.”

She lit up when I said that.

Since then, my cousin has married an Italian from outside of Verona. My husband came into my life, a man born in my second home, Florence. I have lived in my beloved Firenze for 4.5 years as a legal resident.

Thanks to the path my Nana took from Farneta to London to America. My mother was born in a small town outside of London called Ledbury after my American grandfather swept my Nana off her feet. 

I experienced life outside of my hometown, outside of Nana’s Italy, outside of the norm. I took the leap of faith and let the net appear for me to live my already extraordinary life. 

You only live once, I always say to people. There is no reason to second guess your ideas, your path or even if you change your path for the better. Because we never know when our time is up. I do not want to be one of those people at the end of their life that says “I wish I started that Retreat business in Italy”.

Life is short and it is important to live it to the fullest.

Drink the wine, eat the cake, take that trip, explore that culture, spend the money.

Leap and the net will appear. It always does. I am a prime example of that saying. The net always appeared for me. 

I took the leap in 2005 when I quit my 9-5 job and spent the summer in Florence learning Italian. I took the leap in 2007 when I became a nanny for an Italian family. I took the leap and signed up for a travel writing workshop in Rome with my dear friend Amanda Castleman in 2008. I took the leap when I decided to apply for British citizenship and move my life to Florence in 2009. 

In Florence, I struggled, I worked paycheck to paycheck, I rode my bike everywhere, I knew all the secret side streets of Florence (to this day I can walk them in my head). I ran out of money. I couldn’t pay rent at a certain point. I was robbed. I was heartbroken. I got into bike accidents.

I fell. But I got up again. Every time. I brushed off the dirt from the cobblestones and pressed on. 

I do not regret one experience, one heartbreak, one job, one mean Italian who told me I didn’t speak right, one decision, one credit card purchase. Because they all led me to this point. The point in my life where I feel like a whole person. I lived where I wanted, ate what I wanted and always chose what was right for me. On my terms. 

People still ask me to this day, “why did you leave Italy?”

My boring answer is “the economy”. My actual answer is “I haven’t left yet.” 

A better answer now is, I needed to come home to fully develop my dream of “never leaving Italy”. 

That brings us to the present moment. I am incredibly excited to start this next chapter of my life. Living my dream of showing and teaching people about self-love and self-worth, about a country, and a city that is my real home in my heart. 

You only live once, remember that. Use all the hours, minutes, seconds in your day to live your best life. 

What would you start working on right now to live more fully?

Love & Light,

Kate

Makes Waves

Makes Waves

Makes Waves

Originally posted Feb 5, 2020

Make waves — It’s your turn to make a splash and rock a few creaky boats. Don’t be afraid to get wet. You may fail, you may look foolish, or you may make people think in a new way. Every great trailblazer and change-maker made waves. You’re no different.

A few weekends ago, I took a chance on a retreat nearby. I was reluctant to spend the money but I had too many signs to pass it up. I enjoyed every minute of it. We were limited time with our devices and we were focused on going inward. I noticed how much I am controlled by my devices. It was great to be away from it for most of the weekend. I learned to be with my thoughts more. I was aware of how I was thinking and talking to myself. I could choose again if a thought triggered me into fear or doubt.

I felt like I was seen. I didn’t know these people very well and it was important for me to speak my truth and be heard and seen. Even when I realized that I was talking too much, I felt the feeling of being “too much” and forgave myself for the thought of “no one cares about your husband and what he does for you”. 

During the weekend, I opened up and told someone about my retreat. I wasn’t ashamed about it, or talked it down. I said how excited I was. I didn’t force anyone to agree with me. I didn’t beg anyone to come. My ego (Inner Asshole) wrote those last two sentences. My IA talks me down a lot,  but I now realize when he is speaking and not my authentic self. 

Have you found yourself in the negative story spiral? I know I am usually there a few times a day. 

Try this: Choose Again Method

  1. Notice the negative fear based thought and how it feels.
  2. Forgive yourself for having the thought
  3. Choose again — reach for the next best feeling thought.

My mantra after the negative thought is:

I choose peace instead of this.

Make waves in your life. Don’t let others’ opinions or non-opinions steer you from your goal. Change the tides. Move mountains. Shine your light out to the world.

“The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself.” -Anna Quinlen

Love & Light,

Katie 

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