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60 Days and 60 Nights – My Noah’s Ark for Tough Times

7 Mar

60 Days and 60 Nights – My Noah’s Ark for Tough Times

After a bit if a hiatus, I am back to continue to share wonderful wellness tips and tricks for all you busy women.  Hooray!  I survived the last 60 days and have come out a bit beat up but happy and healthy.

Have you ever thought that things are starting to turn your way? You hesitatingly start to feel excited. You think, “I’ve paid dues and it’s my time now.” You have hope that a brighter horizon is on the way…and then WHAMMO!!  Another tornado hits and you are thrown off your feet and slammed onto the ground!! OUCH! In that moment, I look up and ask, “REALLY??!! Didn’t I already meet my “3 bad things in row” limit?”  What’s up with that?!!  Now these thoughts are somewhat fleeting and I quickly realize that this is life. Life is constant change.  I know it, I expect it and I embrace it!  It is also the reason that every day, I bring myself back into the present as often as I can, so I can savor and enjoy those times of joy, peace and moments of grace everyday.  It allows space for experiencing happiness and contentment in my life regardless of my circumstances.

Sooooo, what happened and how did I make it across the fierce waves of change and challenge, fairly unscathed and content?? Amongst other challenges I was teeter tottering at the time, in November 2015, my dearest older brother (also one of my very best friends), caught a bacterial infection that went septic and rampaged through his entire body and nearly killed him.  He was in the ICU area for over 60 days fighting for his life. It was a very long waiting game of life and death for him. Please don’t think that I am complaining because the truth is, I have been in his place and I would not wish that on anyone. I was the lucky one but I knew I had to pull out all the ammo I had to get through this and be there for my brother, my family and myself.

This is a long timeframe to be in stress and anxiety and it is NOT good for the mind, body or soul. Throughout the time, I would experience moments of panic and anxiety.  My brain and my thoughts would start to go crazy, cluttering my mind with stories of what might happen and thinking of worst case scenarios about my brother. My mind also asked the question…would I be able to keep up with the hours of driving each week to advocate and visit my brother, take care of my kids and family, meet my other obligations and maintain my practice? I would also riddle myself with guilt if I didn’t go visit. “I’m a bad sister, I’m selfish, he will think I don’t care…blah, blah, blah.”

So, I pulled out my life jacket and proceeded to make my way through the rough waters.

BREATHE… In those moments, first I would breathe slow diaphragmatic(expand the belly) breaths, 5 seconds in, hold for 5 seconds, and release as slowly as possible for 10 seconds for about 2 minutes. Breathing immediately slows your heart rate, cortisol levels caused by the initial stressor go down and you can think just a little more clearly to analyze what’s really going on.

ASK QUESTIONS TO CHANGE YOUR MINDSET…Then, I would ask myself the following…”Is this thought true?  Is it absolutely true? Is this thought serving me well?” Of course, the answer is no, no and a resounding NO! This exercise immediately made me feel more in control of my thoughts realizing that I am making up my own stress and my own stories.  I would thank those thoughts for visiting and say goodbye and I felt better.  TaDa!! Easy-Peasy, right?

I also practiced other tools.

GET QUIET… I was diligent with my daily meditation practice or “get quite time” as I refer to it because meditation is a scary word for some people.  This was KEY to my ability to maintain and make clear decisions and priorities not only for myself but for my brother. Each morning, I got quiet for at least 20 -30 minutes and more if I had time but the important thing was that I knew that I had to make my quiet time my number one priority.  Without it, my days were rough, foggy and busy but not as productive or focused as the days I meditated.  I rarely missed a day.  The benefits of meditation are almost endless but that deserves more than I can cover here.

INTUITION AND ENERGY MANAGEMENT…I also dug deep into my body and my intuition to guide me.  I had to manage not only my time but my energy so I would not be depleted when my kids came home from school. So I would use my gut along with my mind to determine priorities for each day. I knew I could not do everything so I did what mattered and I knew what mattered absolutely.

ASK FOR HELP/HAVE A SUPPORT TRIBE…I am not one who likes to ask for help but over the years I have learned that it takes courage to ask for help when you need it.  It is an expression of strength and leadership, to first recognize that you can’t do it alone and secondly, to reach out to others for support.  I am truly blessed with an amazing set of friends who create my village when I need help.  I call on them and they reach out to me as well.  If you don’t have a tribe or village, I highly recommend gathering one up ASAP!  Tip: Make sure you are discerning and surround yourself only with those people that fill your bucket and not the energy vampires or drama queens.

MOVEMENT…I am a huge advocate of exercise and I exercised every day to help keep my stress at bay and stay physically fit.  I would make sure to go to the gym, run, dance or do yoga before my day started.  It is an excellent and fun way to start the day feeling energized and ready to take on whatever is to come.

These few practices just touch the surface of how I made it through the last 2- 3 challenging months and how I help my clients achieve similar results in their lives. I hope you find some part that you can take with you and use the next time life brings you lemons.  It’s been a whirlwind but I had the tools and practices in place to make it through with grace.

By the way, my brother is doing much better now and is recovering in a rehab facility in San Francisco.

Sending you all wellness wishes, hugs and love!

In Wellness,

Dianne

GOOD NEWS:  If this post resonated with you and you want to discover more about how you can learn these practices to better manage not only your challenging moments but your life, please email me at dhillcoaching@gmail.com to reserve your spot!

BIG ANNOUNCEMENT!! I HAVE STARTED MY OWN MEETUP GROUP just for you!! It’s called Happy Healthy Woman Entrepreneurs Meetup. Please click on the link below to read the details and RSVP to attend the event or join the meetup group if interests you.

The URL is: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/happy-healthy-women-entrepreneurs-meetup-tickets-22641019900

More Wellness tips:

Oprah Winfrey and Deepak Chopra are teaming up again for another life changing 21-day meditation experience. This is a great way to get started if you have never meditated and if you already meditate, it is a great addition to your current practice.  It is free for 21-days!  Even if you have no intention of ever meditating, it is worth listening to 1 or 2 days just to start your day with positive feelings.  Here is the link to sign up: https://chopracentermeditation.com/

Sending you all wellness wishes, hugs and love,

Dianne

Running in the Rain!

22 Jan

On the path of my theme of getting uncomfortable everyday, I am posting my first video blog. It is totally spontaneous and completely unrehearsed but it’s from my heart. Enjoy! Sending SUPER BIG HUGS to you all today on National Hug Day!! xoxoxo!

https://vimeo.com/152717612

https://vimeo.com/152717612

Continue reading

12 Jan

RoadLessTraveled

2016 A Year of Facing my Fears – Week 1 1/2

1/11/16

It’s been a pretty amazing 11 days since we rang in 2016! In a previous post, I declared 2016 as the year of facing my fears!! Yay world, bring it on! I have committed to do something different, out of my comfort zone or something that completely scares me, every day. So far, my daily challenges have ranged from going ice skating and trying out new group exercise classes to making big life changing decisions. This practice has brought forth some deep, meaningful insights that I only just realized about my more recent self.

It started New Year’s day 2016 when I took my daughter and her friend ice skating. There is a nice, warm, cozy bar upstairs at the rink where you can watch the kids skate on the ice while you stay warm and have a hot toddy. Doesn’t that sound soooo nice? Well, it does to me. I even brought my book to read because I rarely get downtime like that to sit and relax without feeling guilty. This was my plan at first, however, when I got there, I remembered my commitment and instead of heading to that comfortable, cozy place, I checked my bag into a locker, rented ice skates and got on the ice for the first time in over 10 years. I had SOOOOO much fun! I skated with the girls too and took pictures. It’s not like I am not the adventurous type because if you knew me in my past, you would know that I love taking on challenges and trying new things.

However, what I DID realize and what came to light, was that these last few years since I suffered my brain aneurysm, I have been cautious. More cautious than I have ever been and I’m scared to do some of things that I used to LOVE to do and scared to do some of things I have never done before but long to do. These last few years, I have taken the road more travelled with a well paved safe route to where I am going. I can see where I will end up and I know I will get there safe and sound. How boring that is!! What’s even more unbelievable, is that this so-called safe route is not always a happy place. In fact, what I am finding more often than not, is that although it’s a known entity, that “safe” path no longer serves me and rather hurts me instead. It’s not who I thought I would be after surviving a near-death experience. I HAVE been timid!! I have been scared and fearful! Maybe rightfully so in the early part of my recovery but I am doing well and I have had an amazing miraculous recovery. I really have no excuses to keep playing small and to keep feeling so vulnerable (or at least letting vulnerability stop me).

Here’s the thing, I am worried about falling down. I mean literally falling and hitting my head. I have all this hardware in my brain that keeps me alive and I don’t want to crack my head and jar anything in there. I have had lots of people tell me to be careful too. My life depends on me taking care of my brain and I want to live a lot longer and see my young kids grow up and I want to play with my grandkids!

So here is the question??? Do I keep using this fear of falling and hurting my head as an excuse that prevents me from doing what I love, to living my passion, or serving my tribe? I think NOT! At least not anymore. April 7th 2016 will mark the 5 year anniversary of my survival. I hope by April, you and I will see that this year of facing my fears has propelled me into a future where I am stepping up and speaking out loud. It’s interesting that my brain injury and fear of falling has silently and quietly spread into all areas of my life. It’s not just effecting my brain anymore, it’s effecting my life. I see it like a small sprout that has now grown into an out of control vine, spreading through my entire body and being. It’s fear. That just blows me away that I have let it take over my life that way without even realizing it.

So now that I have this awareness of my fear, I have decided that rather than fight it, fear will become my partner. There are good things about fear. In some way, it pushes me to be courageous. It makes my accomplishments that much sweeter because I have had to overcome adversity and fear to make things happen and to move forward. Here is what is happening now when I come to a fear choice in my journey…First, I look at the easy and safe route where I can keep the status quo and then, I look at the route that is cloudy, unclear and I have no idea where it’s going, and I say to myself, “Yes, I AM scared but I am going to do it anyway!” I am going to trust and choose to step into the unknown, the path without the clear outcomes, but with a certainty that all will be just as it should be and I will land on my feet and be free again.” And so what if I fall, I will just get back up and stay the course! What’s the big deal. Bring it on baby, I’m ready to roll!flying angel

Sending endless love and hugs to all,

Dianne Hill, Life Wellness Coach, speaker and peace seeker at Inspired For Life!

 

 

 

My Intention for a Happy 2016

3 Jan

Happy New Year all!! I had a wonderful start to 2016, ringing in the New Year with close friends and surrounded with laughter, love and connection. I can’t think of a better way to start out 2016. Over the last few weeks, I have been receiving messages, signals and signs from various sources including God and the Universe that I need to stop hiding. I need to step out of my comfort zone. I am not allowing myself to reach out and be seen, to share my gifts with my community, my country and the world. I am making too many excuses and I am limiting myself. I heard and felt this but it’s a busy time so I kind of put it aside for the moment. Then, last night, one of the most humble, talented and amazing women I was with, shared a story that just hit home with me. We were talking about New Year’s resolutions and how no one ever keeps them EXCEPT this one year she shared with us. In this particular year, she decided that she was going to face her fears and start doing those uncomfortable things she was avoiding all the years prior. It changed her life. She got a new job, she moved to a new state, she met amazing people and had experiences that she will never forget and she even met the man that would be her life partner. I would chalk that up as pretty remarkable year.

Having already had my own internal callings and many external messages, I was deeply inspired by her story. I have decided that I am going to STOP making excuses and START raising the bar for myself. In 2016, I am committing to doing something everyday that is even slightly out of my comfort zone. Especially, the things that I am resisting the most. Even just the tiniest actions will count and I am going to journal my experiences as I take those actions. I am so excited!! I feel this surge of energy in my body that this is absolutely the right path I need to take right now. So stay tuned and follow along if you want to see how empowered action, manifestation, spirituality, love, connection, living my values and my purpose play out this 2016.

Wishing you all a peace, abundance and love in 2016 and beyond,
Dianne

My Home Coming – A Year Later

4 May

A year ago today, I came home from the hospital 30 days after my brain aneurism happened.  I remember being in the hospital and working so hard with the PT’s and doctors so that I could get cleared to be home by my birthday on May 6th. What an amazing feeling when I was able to slowly and carefully walk on my own out of that door, get in the car and ride home. I remember my eyes filled with tears because I could not believe I had made it out. Wow!  It’s been a long road this year and I am so proud of how much my family and I have grown. I am so grateful for the many lessons I have learned and the life transformations that have occurred over the last year.  Thank you to my husband and my friends who have stuck by my side throughout it all.  I know it was challenging for you too and I am lucky to have such amazing people in my life. The journey is not over but I celebrate how far I have come.  I live each day with a life force that I have never known.  What’s next…continue recovery, starting a new career in life wellness coaching, speaking engagements, a little travel and most importantly maintaining life balance.  All while focusing on time with my kids, my husband and close friends and building a warm and welcoming home. Stay tuned…it just gets better from here!

 

Today, I am going to treat myself and get my nails done or maybe a foot massage.  I don’t know who with or where but I will head out after my Zumba class with Stacy and have a glass of champagne!

 

Love to you all,

Dianne

“Live the life you were meant to. Love from your soul. Laugh while your doing it.”  Dianne Maldonado Hill

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Update – April 2012 – One Year

29 Apr

Update - April 2012 - One Year

Celebrating one year of survival on the beach in Aptos, CA with family, friends and all our kids:)

Easter Sunday – One Year later

28 Apr

Happy Easter Saturday! Today I celebrate life with my heart filled with gratitude and love. It is hard to believe that 1 year ago today, I was not here with you all. I was fighting for my life so that today I am more alive than I have ever been. I hope you will take a short while to celebrate with me, not my life, but the preciousness of your own. I am going to surround myself with the warm love of my family and special friends this Easter weekend all the while so grateful for all I have in my life.
With love, Dianne

“Live the life you were meant to. Love from your soul. Laugh while you are doing it.” by “Dianne Maldonado Hill