The Good Energy Series: Reconnecting to Nature

All facets of nature are in a dance with one other. From birds to squirrels, bees to ants, redwoods to wildflowers, earthlings are deeply responsive to life’s rhythms. Spring flowers get their spectacular bloom from the rain. The trees sway with the summer breeze, and then surrender and fall when the chill of autumn blows through. The winter invites all of life to either hibernate or die so that it can be born once again.

Humans are no exception. Our bodies are naturally drawn to rise with the sun, and our energy slows and contracts when it sets. But we have been lured from this sacred connection. Electricity heats our homes in the bite of winter, and cools it down during the long days of summer.

We light up the world when it would otherwise be dark, sparking our excitement when nature insists it is time for slumber. We seldom eat with the seasons or with the intention of feeding our cells, rather opting for whatever we want whenever addiction whispers its longings – sometimes while managing a million other things.

StockSnap / Ana Paula Lima

The pulse of modern life is seductive, but is confusing and taxing to our bodies – bodies that deeply crave what they inherently know.  We rebel against our natural rhythms, our phones in hand and aglow into the wee hours – trapped into a perpetual state of mildly to obsessively curious, never wanting to miss out and hopelessly unable to relax.

In this article I am asking you to do exactly that. I plan to challenge and dismantle many of your habits, while asking that you remember the hair-raising truth of who you are.

Reconnecting to the “Good Energy” You

Energy fills you and everything surrounding you. When you look at your reflection, you see a whole person and call it “me.” Perhaps your eyes are your best feature – maybe the color of the sea, a lush blade of grass or mysterious and dark as coal. Perhaps you gaze down with discontentment at the pale, skinny legs you inherited from your mother or upward at the jagged hairline that looks like a mirror of your father’s. But, you are not just what your eyes know.

You are a vast community in your own right, made up of 50 trillion cells. And, it’s important to acknowledge what fills up every one of those 50 trillion cells: energy.

Everything composing the miracle that others call by your name is a unique combination of energetic expressions. And, energy is never fixed. This means your state of health and mind are never locked in to a single expression, nor are you hopelessly enslaved by any genetic curse or predisposition. Your brain is not forever tainted by that bad reputation or crushing heartbreak, nor are you stained by the shameful decision you made five minutes ago. You have total liberty to work with the blueprint you have been given, and then change it.

Just as you can fill your speakers with a beautiful piece of music or turn on a wildly hilarious comedy and feel your mood begin to elevate, you can do the same with every aspect of your body and life.

I will be guiding you through a world of transformative principles – from practical science to mindfulness to healing herbs to the energetics of food. All topics will be delivered to expand your trajectory of wellness and rejuvenate your life in playful and enjoyable way.

This, my friends, is the Good Energy Series, and I created it because everything is composed of energy. It’s in the smiles and the shrugs you exchange, that steaming cup of coffee or delicious plate of food. It’s in the workout you either dread or love, and that conversation that either makes you feel unstoppable or small. And, although you cannot control the energy of others, you hold your energetic reigns. So, let us begin.

8 Simple Ways to Connect With Nature & Recharge Your Spirit

Rewriting the chemistry of your body begins with reconnecting to joy. So often people become addicted to their negative patterns and feed their own illnesses when, ironically, the process of personal transformation is a world of fun and pleasure. Below are eight concepts to ease you into the series and launch the process of total energetic rejuvenation. Slide your party hat on.

#1 Pull the Weeds

To keep a happy garden, you must pull the weeds. You won’t be able to see your bloom if the weeds of negativity are towering over your flowers – shadowing and strangling them, demanding that you waste away your time and attention.

In “Within: A Spiritual Awakening to Love & Weight Loss, Dr. Habib Sadeghi says, “Because we are powerfully affected by the consciousness of others, it’s extremely important that we keep company with other people who uplift and support us, make us laugh and feel good.”

In other words, you can’t see what is good in your life if you are giving your energy away to the interactions which are poisoning it. This not only applies to the relationships which drain your light, but also to the dead-end endeavors that make you feel hopeless, that sugary vice that gives you daily stomach aches and the clothes hanging in your closet that remind you of the body parts you wish to hide.

Decide right now to only channel your energy to the things which make you vibrate higher and burst forth with happiness. Stop letting those weeds strangle your joy.

#2 Awaken to Your Pleasure Principal
StockSnap / Kristina Paukshtite

Studies reveal that choking down a sour juice or smoothie that your tastebuds reject – in the name of health – is not as beneficial to your cells as you may believe. Gagging is not a badge of honor, for it is sounding an alarm throughout your body that says, “We have an intruder in the building!”

We have our tastebuds for a specific purpose: experiencing pleasure. Studies on food absorption have revealed that our bodies receive the most nutritional benefit when responding with satisfaction. So, taste the taste and drink the drink.

Do not rush through that salad to get it over with, or through that frothy latte and decadent cupcake just so you can indulge in another. Be fully alive within the experience, whatever the experience may be. Your cells will thank you.

#3 Prepare Your Food With Love

The preparation of food is a sacred act. Preparing meals with aggravation and haste creates stressful energy for the food you’re feeding to your cells. Your body deserves better than that poison.

Always prepare your food with a positive spirit, approaching it as an act of creativity, love and kindness for your body. This also applies to the restaurants you frequent. I always “feel out” the vibe of a place before I return for another meal. If the staff is smiling and buzzing with happy chatter, I feel good about the food I am served.

Make it a goal to eat only foods that are chopped, sliced and stirred with a spirit of absolute love.

#4 Chew Your Food With Thanks, Never Haste

Chewing your food slowly and mindfully is crucial to wellness because it activates the enzymes needed to properly digest your food. Every substance the body uses to keep itself alive comes by way of the digestive system. So, slow down, connect and enjoy. Remember: you’re feeding the cells of your body, and that is an incredible responsibility.

#5 Hone the Power of Your Tongue

There is power in your words. With every utterance, you are either calling upon blessings or hexing yourself. Your words are oozing out of your mouth and filling the world in which you live. So don’t contribute to a toxic wasteland of gossip, vengeance or greed. Make a heaven with your words.

#6 Move With a Spirit of Celebration, Not Strain

Your body was made to bend, climb, crawl, jump and run. Movement is not only an inherent means of survival, but a celebration of being alive. For many, it is also a luxury. So, instead of lifting that weight with strain, resentment and huffing-puffing misery, lift it with a spirit of joy. Instead of clenching your jaw and tensing your shoulders during that plank, close your eyes, surrender and be in a state of reverence for your body. When you stretch, reach with gratitude that you can move at all.

 #7 Dress to Reflect Your Most Joyful Self

A couple of years ago, I interviewed fashion icon Betsey Johnson for a magazine story. In our conversation, she gifted me with one of the most simple yet liberating concepts. She said, “I don’t own a pair of sold black shoes because I want to look down at my feet and enjoy what I have on them.”

I have never forgotten this lesson. So often we fill our wardrobes with clothes we believe will flatter our best features, mask our flaws or help us make a trendy statement. But, our primary focus should be to wear only that which expresses our most joyful style. Most of the time I feel happier when I wear bright, saturated hues and vibrant patterns that are a celebration in their own right. They command me to rise from my “stuck in a storm cloud” self to a brighter, bolder and more celebratory version of myself.

The beautiful thing is that everyone will interpret this concept and “try it on” uniquely, which makes the experiment (and the world) more interesting.

#8 Rekindle a Love Affair With Earth

With so many distractions and strivings for material possessions, it is easy to forget what our home is. We may think of home as being the modest 600-square foot apartment or the extravagant 5,000-square foot house, but that isn’t true. Our home is Earth. And, we heal when we eat from it, connect with it, touch it and – ultimately – venerate it.

Earth is our food source, our mecca of learning, our playground and our friend. What a luxury it is to walk upon it and be encompassed by its fertile beauty.

“Grounding” is the practice of touching the earth. The earth’s electrons have an immensely therapeutic impact on all of our body’s systems – from protecting us from inflammation to balancing cortisol. So, lie on the grass or nest in a field of wildflowers. Let the fragrance and colors of nature enrapture you. Be hypnotized by the sound of a stream. Take a forest bath. Let the trees remind you how small your problems are.

Lacey Johnson

Madam Wonder: Founding Editor

Lacey Johnson is an award-winning editor, essayist and journalist who earned her degree from Belmont University in 2011. She has worked with a broad range of celebrities and entrepreneurs — including the likes of Betsey Johnson, Deepak Chopra, Shark Tank's Daymond John and Olympic Gold Medalist Shawn Johnson. She is editor-in-chief for The Connect magazine, and her work can be read in a variety of print and digital media sources including Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, Woman’s Day, Mirabella, PopSugar, and others. With a deep intrigue for human beings, and fiery passion for smacking her readers in the face with the truth, she writes and reports boldly about topics that challenge the status quo — in the realms of love and relationships, popular culture, travel, spirituality, women’s issues and the nuances of a fulfilling life. She is also deep in the process of co-authoring her first book, which is a gutsy exploration of the illusions of fame, power and success, told through narratives involving some of the people the world most idolizes.

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