August 9, 2017

Recently I took a couple days to retreat and recharge. My schedule (aka life) had become saturated with technology, social media, to-do lists and social obligations. I was seeing all the “signs” that I needed to slow down. I was tired, forgetful, easily frustrated and I was getting frequent headaches.  I waited longer than I should have, pushing on, but finally (probably minutes before a mental or physical crash) I stopped.

For 2 days, I was alone and almost every choice was intentional. I turned off the computer and only used my phone for talking. I took naps, spent hours in nature both days, read an entire book and wrote pages in my journal. I carefully chose my meals, thinking about what I really wanted to eat and preparing most things from scratch. I sipped my favorite drinks. I watched a movie. I lit candles. I added lavender to my bath. It was a wonderful 48 hours.

I refocused on self-care, made a commitment to nourishment and even wrote out a daily plan of ways I intended to conti...

June 14, 2017

We’ve heard it a thousand times: enjoy the little things. And while, perhaps, it’s easy to enjoy little things like birds singing, children laughing or a phone call from a friend if we slow down and pay attention, what about the truly mundane, routine things? What about the annoyances, inconveniences or even our own bad habits?

I was recently presented with this question: what if we treated everything as sacred? From the smallest, seemingly meaningless encounter at the grocery store to our guilty pleasures and unhealthy vices? Is it possible that even these things could somehow be sacred?

I spent some time with the word. What does sacred mean to me? Some of the words that rose to the surface were special, dear, divine, extraordinary and healing. I made a list and added a few more words and phrases from the dictionary: hallowed, blessed, revered, something that pervades all dimensions of life.

I then decided to take a full day and approach every interaction and experience I could as a sacr...

May 7, 2017

“Imagine a woman who honors the body of the Goddess in her changing body. A woman who celebrates the accumulation of her years and wisdom.Who no longer uses her life energy to disguise the changes in her body and life...Imagine yourself as this woman”

-Patricia Lynn Reilly

Lately I’ve been attempting to view my body as a goddess body. I’ve noticed so many mythical goddesses, wise women and representations of Mother Earth are strong voluptuous women. Women with bellies and breasts and thighs and wild hair. Some are not attractive by today’s standards at all and I’ve yet to find many that remind me of fairy tale princesses and the women from today’s magazines. This perspective has helped me reconsider my own body- its imperfections and flaws, its curves and thick bones. And in general, I have come to like, even love, my body. I can stick with that belief until I spend too much time watching TV or consuming ads for makeup and botox. I see the covers of Glamour and Women’s Health with photos...

April 4, 2017

The Wise Woman Tradition is as old as we are. In every culture, in every era, there have been women embracing ancient wisdom, their intuition and nature’s gifts to heal, teach, lead and learn. The Wise Woman Tradition is heart-centered and the knowledge and magic is inside each of us, in our bones. We may not be aware of it or connected to it, but it resides beneath the noise, beneath the conditioning, beneath what we think we know.

Many of us have heard of the Wise Woman Tradition through our exposure to herbs or wildcrafting and these practices are surely wise woman ways. But the spirit of the Wise Woman Tradition is not simply found in the herb, using the herb, or even growing the herb. The Wise Woman Way is knowing the herb.  The Wise Woman knows, feels, senses, understands her allies and tools, whether they are animals, plants, songs, celebrations, stories or other people. The Wise Woman Way is a simple way of living. The Wise Woman sees wonder everywhere.

The Wise Woman Tradit...

March 9, 2017

As winter comes to an end, the crow caws its farewell to the winter season and earthworms and other critters come out of hiding to greet spring. Known to many Native Americans as the Crow Moon, the days around March's full moon invite us to reflect on change, consider letting go of things holding us back and step outside in search of new life. 

In January, many of us gathered under the New Moon for a releasing and smudging ceremony. Smudging is a powerful way to transition from season to season or from one life phase to another. It is an ancient ritual, often performed in a ceremony, in which sacred plants are burned to clear or bless a space. Sage is most often used, however mugwort, cedar and many other plants and herbs can be used for various intentions. Smudging can help dissolve stagnation and negativity, clear harmful energy and help you start anew. Science has even shown that over 95% of the bacteria in a room is gone after sage smudging!

Grandmother Wapajea, a Native American wit...

January 7, 2017

I am often asked to describe life situations or issues that may cause a person to consult with a life coach. To answer that question, I love to first offer an explanation of what life coaching is and what I believe my role is with women I work with.

Life coaching focuses on the present and looks towards the future, assuming you are the expert.  As a life coach, my goal is to support the discovery (or rediscovery) of your own wisdom and strength. I do have a tool box of ideas, activities and inspiration to assist you in that journey. However, my role is to guide you to a place of comfort and clarity where you can discover these things for yourself.  I create a safe space for you to explore, experiment, question, dream and connect to the wisdom that is already inside of you.

Over the past 8 years, much of my work has been in the recovery sector. I have worked with clients struggling with depression, homelessness, addiction, mental health disorders and past trauma. My early professiona...

November 7, 2016

Do you ever feel the urge to make stuff? To create without any real purpose…just for the sake of creating? Do you consider yourself a creative person? Our women’s group recently read Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert and in the book she shared her opinion that “If you’re alive, you’re a creative person. You and I and everyone you know are descended from tens of thousands of years of makers. Decorators, tinkerers, storytellers, dancers, explorers, fiddlers, drummers, builders, growers, problem solvers, and embellishers- these are our common ancestors.”

The idea of being a “maker” really resonated with me. What is the difference between a maker, and say, an artist? As I thought this over, I stumbled upon a local article about a local man named Eddie, who constantly creates and experiments with different tools and mediums. When interviewed he said, “I wouldn’t call myself an artist. I don’t like getting caught up in labels too much. Semantics arguments tend to be useless; you lose the meaning...

October 27, 2016

In a few short years, we’ve definitely worked through some buzzwords- mindfulness, organic, wanderlust, natural, local and recently I’ve been noticing the word “wild”. The world of marketing finds brilliant ways to convince us we can buy mindfulness, that “natural” is enough to make something healthy and that using the word wanderlust makes us more interesting. I think various movements have contributed to the popularity of these words…the controversies within the food industry, the new age movement, efforts to support small town businesses and so on. So what’s with “wild”? Why does this word keep showing up? And what happens when you place it next to the word “woman”? In Women Who Run with Wolves, author Clarissa Estes says “an old, old memory is stirred,” but what is this memory? What makes it so powerful? And why do we want to be wild anyway?

I was at a women’s retreat recently and a teacher pointed out that for over 6600 years we have had predominantly patriarchal societies. Unfortu...

September 17, 2016

Ever since I learned about affirmations, I have considered them to be magic words. When people talk about affirmations they are usually referring to positive affirmations, but there are just as many negative ones. Honestly, we are all probably more experienced with the negative ones! At a basic level, affirmations are statements we repeat to ourselves, either in our minds as thoughts or aloud as perspectives and beliefs, that create the reality we experience.

Without much effort, you can probably think of a limiting belief or negative thought you have about yourself or your relation to the world that emerges during times of stress or sadness, probably so effortlessly it seems automatic. It may be something as simple as calling yourself “stupid” when you make a mistake or it could be a long held belief that you’ll never be good enough or accomplish enough. The repetition of these, or similar thoughts, creates a harsh reality that can be hard to escape, leaving us feeling frustrated or in...

July 12, 2016

I just love a good list. Everything from grocery lists to bucket lists satisfy a part of my brain that gets way too much pleasure out of bullet points and check boxes. The interesting thing about lists are that some work against us (like that never ending to do list) and others work for us, empowering and motivating (like gratitude lists and bucket lists). Recently I took the time to make a Joy List and I would like to invite you to play along and consider creating one of your own.

I saw an illustration earlier this week, describing the difference between happiness and joy. From the artist's perspective, joy is an attitude that defies circumstances; it's an inside job. Happiness, on the other hand, is a feeling, based on circumstances. With an attitude of joy, we naturally experience more happiness. It is easier to have an attitude of joy, when we fill our lives with things that really excite our spirit, encourage our creativity and when we do things that are just plain fun! Enter the J...

Please reload

Celebrate Your Existence | Chattanooga, TN |

© 2017-2020 Michelle Rigling/Celebrate Your Existence          All Rights Reserved

  • w-facebook