Empower Your Self

We are empowered when we have the tools and knowledge to create intentional change and respond to life’s challenges in ways that ennoble us and support our quest for a True Life.

We need fortifications for such challenges. As one of my clients said to me, “Healing is not for sissies.”

We need the strength of our minds, hearts, and spirits as we navigate the rough waters and bumpy terrain of our healing paths, and as we discover our potential.

These articles offer inspiration, stories, and practical tools to inspire your powerful inner-guide.

Five Things I Must Do to Start My Day (Hint: Yep, Think Slow)

five things I must do to start the day, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md, wisdom, start slow, practice slow, slow medicine

Aren’t those things we do—and say to ourselves—in those first minutes after awakening, the tone-setters for the whole day?

Jumping out of bed and racing out of the house, coffee in one hand, kid in the other—leads one direction. (Eek! The dreaded time pressure, high survival launching out the door—I remember those days! Oh my gosh—my chest is clenching!)

Versus slow. Slow start. Slow breaths.…

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Love.

RAICES, love, love children, give love,

Dear One,

Isn’t everything we do about love—ultimately?

It is for me.

My family. My work. My friends. My writing. My walks in the woods. My struggles and overwhelm. All of it.

It all adds up to bringing more love into this world—my world, your world, our world. The only thing that matters.

Here’s what I did today: I gave my support to RAICES—The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and…

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Permission

permission slip, permission, self-empowerment, self-care, self-help, wisdom

Do you have one or two (or five!) people in your life who challenge you?

Yes, me too!

I’m a big fan of permission slips but I forgot mine recently and got into big trouble with one of the energy vampires in my life (you know those people?). Dang if they didn’t sneak up on me, leaving me feeling exhausted and angry (for letting myself become disempowered).

I forgot my permission slip! But it’s…

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Where Do We Find the Truth?

inner wisdom, intuition, trust yourself, inner guidance, truth, inner truth,

Does this quote resonate with you as it does me? (Many thanks to my great mentor, Sydney Baker MD, extraordinary physician and Functional Medicine pioneer, for sharing!)

“Follow those who seek the truth, but flee from those who have found it.”

-Vaclav Havel (1936-2011, Czech Republic)

 He reminds me that:

The truth is really our truth.

And we misplace our power when we see the truth everywhere…

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My Big Slow Down

slow, slow medicine, slow healing, slow down, my big slow down, letting go, mindfulness

Ever feel like life is going too fast? There’s too much to do? Not enough time?

Me too.

But I realize it’s all a matter of perception… and the choices I make.

I choose what to do. I can do less. And time? I choose what to do with that too.

There’s plenty of time for what’s important. And what happens when I’m less stretched and more present? Timelessness.

My four-year book project went into…

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Clean Out Those Toxic People–Make Space for Love

be loved, love, self-love, you deserve love, let go

“… We have not come into this exquisite world

to hold ourselves hostage from love.

Run, my dear, from anything

that may not strengthen

Your precious budding wings,

Run like hell, my dear,

From anyone likely to put a sharp knife

into the sacred, tender vision

Of your beautiful heart…”

-Hafiz (Sufi poet, 1310-1390)

 

Yes, he nailed it. We deserve love. We’re worthy of love. (Yes, ALL of us.) We…

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“Suffering is Annoying… “

wisdom, truth, wise, transformation, suffering, heal suffering, this too shall pass

In speaking to my son about the grind and muck of graduate school and the uncertainty and trials of putting the pieces of his dream together, I showed him a beautiful book I’m currently reading that I thought was relevant to his situation. Written by renowned Zen Buddhist master, Thich Nhat Hanh, it’s called “No Mud, No Lotus.”

He looked at it, and before I had a chance to explain, he commented…

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Yes, You DO Have the Time!

make time, keep it simple, power of three, time wasting, peace, transformation, self-empowerment

Dear One,

What’s the reason for putting off those personal goals, dreams, desires, and juicy projects? Those things we would love to do or know we must do?

The number one reason I hear from people (I can be one of those people too) is, “I don’t have time.”

But you know what? I don’t buy it.

A closer look reveals two common themes:

We make our goals too big—so it seems like we don’t have…

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I Was Born to Do This

brave. courage, empowerment, self-empowerment, we rise,

Dear Ones,

Try this one on:

“I’m not afraid. I was born to do this.”

-attributed to Joan of Arc

 Did you feel the way that washed over you? The way it sunk in and soothed the fear? Just a bit?

Me too.

 Her words make me feel brave. Like I can face the many things that shake me—like:

  • How my adult children, each time they leave, will be safe and return home to me (from time to time).
  • I can offer…

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We’re Special: No One-Size-Fits-All Solutions

functional medicine, N of One medicine, personalized medicine, epigenetics

Dear Ones,

Are we just outsiders? Outliers? Losers?

Or are we unique?

We failed those treatments that came straight out of our physicians’ “practice guidelines” or that we read about on-line. Even those popular “miraculous” food and lifestyle protocols that worked so well for the authors, or our friends, did nothing for us.

What’s the problem?

Guess what? We’re not all the same.

Part of my work…

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