Thursday, April 3, 2014

#happy is the new #fake

Can you be happy for 100 days in a row? I came upon this website that challenges you to be happy for 100 days. You post one photo a day of something that makes you happy. I can say that I was curious, a bit skeptical but interested enough to check it out, I was hooked when people that I respect and admire for their work were logging on to speak of how "happy" they are. Posting photos of life, food, beautiful scenery, so naturally I was inclined to see what the challenge was all about. Upon further investigation I decided to call bullshit to the whole operation. I mean are we that depressed of a culture that we have to hashtag happy?

When you click onto the website (www.100happydays.com), it states "Can you be happy for 100 days in a row?" I mean the real challenge for me would be to run for a 100 days in a row, to feed the homeless girl that sleeps next to my car for 100 days, to keep my house clean for 100 days. These are real challenges, this....whatever this is, being happy is not a challenge. I could not stop shaking my head and feeling myself get angry.

The website goes on further to explain that 71% of people could not complete the challenge due to time. Time? I was not aware that it took time to be happy. I thought happiness was an emotion, a reaction to what is occurring in your life. I don't think that being happy should require thought or action. It should not be forced or coerced out of someone, it should be authentic, genuine and full of freedom to express yourself. If your life is that terrible, change it! A little backdrop for some of you, for two years of my life I was addicted to pain medication because I was hurting physically, emotionally and mentally. I was diagnosed as depressed and it was true. I never wanted to leave my house and it was hard to have conversations with people without starting to cry. My struggles are real and authentic, I don't need to have someone tell me how I should live my life, or that I should smile more. As if they have any idea what was or is occurring in my life. How dare anyone tell me how I should feel when they have never walked in my shoes. Don't presume that I am not happy or that I am not dealing with hard and serious life issues. We all are, and to be told that I am not happy or that I should smile more makes me feel that the work I am doing is in vein.

Do I need to smile to prove to you that I am happy, that I am grateful for my life. What are we looking for? Those that smile all day, that force happiness and joy on others, they think if they smile they will make me happy, as if I am not happy already. These "constasmilers" most likely go home and are miserable. They open up the fridge or break open a bottle of wine to drown their sorrows. You can put up a front, be fake all day but what happens when the crowd goes away, when you are no longer the center of attention or your photo was not "liked" over 100 times on Instagram? I wrote in my last blog post, can you love without being loved back and I mean that, can you wake up and be happy with absolutely nothing? Have you ever had nothing, truly, absolutely nothing at all?

The challenge asks you to post one picture a day of you doing something that makes you happy. I would ask though, what are you doing the rest of the day? Did a photo truly make you realize that you have a great life? I just cannot buy into this idea that posting a picture will make you happy, will make you appreciate the small things in life. I think the source of true happiness is in the everyday moments, when you're not looking for anything or expecting much. I think happiness is momentary and joy is everlasting. I find my joy in waking up and doing what I love everyday. I don't need to brag about my life, prove my self to others over social media and brag about how great my life is. It is and I know that, I have worked hard to do it. I cannot give anyone the solution to a happy life, I can however tell you that social media is probably the last place I would spend my time to feel good about myself. Set your own standard based off of what you love, what makes you feel great about yourself. Be content with the life that you were given.

I really wonder what this "happy" culture will do to us. If we are always happy what will we do when something really awesome comes our way? Don't dilute the feelings that you have, being happy should be a normal occurrence, it should happen everyday but not with force, not by feeling like you have to be happy otherwise your depressed. I hope to shine light on this, to inspire you to feel all emotions at the appropriate times. To be happy when good things come your way and when they come your neighbors way. To cry when you get bad news. To love when the right one comes your way. To dance when the music sings to your soul and to most of all let it happen in stride, in equal measure and without hesitation.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Love: The Definition of You

What you do on a daily basis is who you are at the end of your life. Wow! I wake up, teach class, eat, teach another class, eat again. Nap. Eat. Teach. Eat. Teach. Sleep. Somewhere in the mix of that I walk my dog. When I started applying that philosophy to my life it started to drive my day towards the real goals that I have written. If each day I can make a move, I can do something, I don't have to wait around for other people to help me accomplish anything, that is what I realized and keep realizing over the last six months.

If I asked you to define who you are in one sentence what would you say? Is your answer your job? Hobby? A brand? A city? An income bracket? A car?


I wrote what my definition is: Katherine Ryan, I am a servant, who loves to read, listen to music and be outdoors, preferably with sunshine and sand. I love to love. I love to teach those who want to learn. I want to serve the world in a capacity I am not sure of now, so I will keep my heart and my mind open to that possibility.


I think so many times we think we should be doing "X" to define "Y." We chase after a dream that we never truly explored. If you love money, then define yourself as that. I am under the assumption that there is always more to a person than what they want to show everyone. We are complex, emotional and passionate beings that want to be accepted. So it is natural to try to prove your worth to family, friends and all those that are interested. Hard question is, can you just exist in a space that is all yours? Can you love without being loved back?




When I started teaching there were times when no one would show up. It was defeating, I could of given up, threw my hands up and said this was too tough, no one wants me. But I sat down, I wrote down reasons why I love what I do, why I chose to give up another life, another career for this. I had months that were tough, very, very tough. I realized that regardless of the audience in front of me, I was fueled by learning and by teaching. I choose to show up day in and day out with a purpose, a reason for teaching and I ask clients to define why they are in my class. If they are not leaving class having learned something either they are in the wrong class or I am the wrong teacher for them. The people in our lives need to give us something; inspiration, motivation, conversation all lead up to great client relationships but that has to continue otherwise the relationship will end. You have to continue to show up ready to learn and explore, that goes both ways.


I have been exploring this teacher/student relationship for a while and it is so great to see students start to explore other classes and other teachers. I implore you all to ask the hard questions, why do I get up every morning? Why am I going to this class? Why am I going to work? Why do I have this person in my life? Keep yourself challenged and keep on challenging those in your life. That is when transformation happens, where breakthrough occurs and moves are truly made!


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Food Integration Program

The month of March I will be leading a 14 day detox followed by a food integration program. I find that a lot of people can stick to something for 14 days and then go back to old habits.It is challenging to cut food out of the diet and for some the detox is just what they need to reset the body and start on a better path to eating healthy, clean foods. We start by cutting out all alcohol, caffeine and meat products and then dive into cutting out grains. This is a great way to clean out your system of extra waste and to feed the body the best available products out there, I promise you will see results in clearer skin, brighter eyes and a renewed sense of energy.


The food integration program keeps you on track with your goals by having a coach, me, guide you through the process of adding in food after the detox one day at a time but remaining with a strict food plan that I have set in motion for you. Controlling what your eating, so it has a purpose, a plan to make you stronger, leaner, more energized and most of all happy. Be happy with what you put in your body, each and every day, focused on maintaining a routine that keeps you at a steady and healthy weight.

I look forward to seeing a new crop of faces this March ready to clean out the body in time for Spring. Please message me for more information at ryan.katherine7@gmail.com





Monday, February 3, 2014

a little piece of heaven

I walk in the door and immediately I am greeted with a feeling of safety, overwhelming love and warmth. Warmth that comes from a devotion to self, to home and to serving. This feeling of comfort, it is what I strive to bring into my own home. A feeling that anyone who walks in the door feels my love, my heartbeat, my Self.

I grew up in a home that felt this way. A reason why I strive for that in my own home, my classes and all around me. My parents gave me so much love and taught me to take care of myself, the things that I own and taking pride in the product of my work. My work, meaning everything that I do, that I associate with and approve of. This can be as simple as making time to listen to a friend. Really listening to them. Putting forth the best quality of work at all times, not when it feels good or people approve of you, but even when they don't. Always thinking of the people around you and how to serve them. That has been my task lately, to serve. To become, a place where people feel free, that they can say anything, do anything and be exactly who they are. Just becoming aware of where I can give, all of me, all the time.

I feel like it is so easy to be blinded with dreams, ambitions and money. But take all that away and who are you? That is what I want to work on, me, the core of who I am, what I am about without all the sparkle. To sparkle all on my own, without certifications, ambassador status, client followings. I found that I give the most of myself when I am present, in the moment and dedicated to listening, not just to people talking, but listening to myself, how do I feel. If I don't feel good, how can I make those around me feel good? If I am uninspired, I cannot inspire. I have to go out into this world, put my hands on the earth, feel the sun shine on my face and spend time being quiet, being still and allowing myself to just be present for whatever shows up. Today, tomorrow, and each day after that.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

excuse me, did you sign up for the fight?

"the nights you fight best
are
when the kiss of death is mistaken for love.
when the game is fixed,
when the crowd screams for your blood.
the nights you fight best
are 
on a night like this
as you chase a thousand 
dark rats from your brain,
as you rise up against the impossible,
as you become a brother
to the tender sister
of joy and 

move on

regardless."

--C.B.

what drives us to the edge? when all the chips are stacked against us, where we have seen enough darkness, kissed death on the lips, tasted the bitter end, to the point where we must change. no, we have to change, everything; our habits, our goals, our lives.

with maturity has come this new attitude of becoming lost in the chase, instead of having to prove myself with a "see me" attitude, i chase a dream that is mine alone. i get lost in the story of me, sometimes i just get lost in a sea of what i think i want, what i wish i had and how happy i think i would be if i had it all. i recently had to sit down and reattach my goals with my dreams. i envision a life that is possible, that is tangible and that i can touch. and everyday, every single day that passes, is an opportunity to seize all that i can out of it, to truly chase the dream or to let it slip away into the arms of someone who wants it more than me. because that is the true test. do you really want it? 

as children we all wanted that "toy" and we wanted it so bad. it was March, your birthday was months away, Christmas even further but we swore to our parents, buy it for me now and i won't want anything else. but by the time december rolls around we already want the next big thing. that is what i am talking about. i have heard the speech, from clients, friends even family members about what we want, where we want to be but the real question is how bad are you willing to fight for it and what are you willing to give up for that dream? it is not just something you see someone else doing that you want too, it is part of who you are and without it, your life would cease to be as it is. this is what i am talking about. these goals, these dreams.

i found my dreams, i wrote them out in my vision and i turned them into my goals. they wake me up with a little more purpose, help me to stay in the "fight" when all i want to do is eat my face off and push the snooze button another time. one day these goals will become not just a vision that i had, but a reality of a life that i have welcomed and am ready to embrace. i am here to be a light even when all else is dark, to shine bright and to love all those that i come into contact with. what are you doing?

Sunday, January 12, 2014

milk

I want to talk about milk. For those of you still consuming milk, even in trace amounts please read. Cow's naturally release toxins through their milk, just like any other gland in our bodies we release toxins through sweating, urine, feces and yes women, our milk. With hormones, antibiotics and genetically modified substances being pumped into them daily can you just imagine what is coming out through their milk??? I will tell you! There is on average 322 million cell counts of Pus per glass, 1.5 million white blood cells (yes, cow's blood) per mL of milk sold, 15-81 different antibiotics that could have been injected into the cow to treat any illness or disease it is facing. Organic milk, while its reduced in these numbers it is not free from them. Not only do we have to switch to milk alternatives such as hemp, rice, coconut, almond or soy but we have to be so careful what food we eat that has milk in it. Look at ingredients. The only milk I would ever drink is when I see the cow being raised, how it is treated and what it is fed and then I would go milk it all by myself and drink it that evening with a huge chocolate chip cookie!




 Cow's milk while it is high in vitamin D is low in Magnesium, a key mineral in our body that is important in more than 300 chemical reactions in the body including helping to keep stomach acid neutralized and bones healthy and strong. The easiest way to get magnesium is through vegetables, not milk, think fiber heavy veggies--squash, broccoli, and leafy greens. The most interesting fact that I saw in my study was that magnesium is used to treat ADHD, lyme disease, cronic fatigue syndrome, migraine headaches and PMS. Of course we can always take supplements, but can we start by eating healthy, drinking so much water and creating a diet that is laden with vegetables, superfoods and fruit! Eating healthy is just one part, but it matters and at the end of the day the food you eat is the fuel for what you want to do, whether it be to move your body and sweat or to sit all day on your couch. Each part matters just as much as the next! I don't have to harm myself or others in the process of refining myself, going through the grit and grunt of life I can be at peace with the fact that even at my greatest moments I am flawed. It is through the struggle that I find peace, through life that I find joy.

Friday, December 13, 2013

with out

"In the zone" is a common term associated with sports where the athlete is completely focused on the task at hand. Athletes are very aware of this term, of being aware with the actions of your body in order to get a direct result. Karma, living a life, an honest life in order to receive "good" in return. Living this way, as "good" as it may seem, is based on a result, you do all that you do in order to get something in return. The problem with this thought is that our society associates discipline with deprivation. We think that if we always do good, we are depriving ourself of living, YOLO (is that right?!?). True, you get one chance to live this life, so why not be the most shining, sparkling, radiant human being alive!

There is a term used in yoga, Kriya, that speaks about living a life that that does generate reaction, there is no resistance or thought behind what you are doing. Your living a life that is "in the zone" at all times. You love your job, your wife, your friends, your children, your house, your car because they all allow you to be who you are and to love everything around you. Your not thinking about if you should or should not because you already know the answer. The ability to live a life that is honest is based upon a deep connection to spirit. Your in tune with your own body when it comes to food, friends, work and outside influences. You know these people, they are all around us, they walk in the room and it lights up. When you see them, you smile and when they speak, you want to listen. They don't have to demand or ask even. They have a goal, a vision and a dream that consumes their entire being. So the question is, can you live a life that is always on point with your goals, your dream and your vision?

When you realize that you make yourself happy by living an honest life that is rooted in the spirit. And all those things, all the people and circumstances in your life can disappear, yet you can remain at peace,
because it was never really yours to begin with.