Care Dare – a Self-Care Summit

We Dare you to take better Care of yourself!

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Meet your First, Base, or Root Chakra by Linda Kaun

  • Do you feel invisible? Like you’re living “half-a-life”?
  • Are you more comfortable living in your head than being fully engaged, passionate and present IN the world?
  • Do you usually put others first, never wanting to be seen as selfish or demanding?
  • And how’s your money … A flowing river or dried up stream in a drought year?

Saying yes to any of these questions is a sign that your first or root chakra is likely blocked.

Most of us have no idea that our chakras affect all aspects of our lives.

What is a Chakra?

LKaun article1 Your body might feel solid but truly there is nothing solid about it. We’re beings of pure energy and light that are vibrating at a slow enough frequency to create what seems like solid matter.

This energy is flowing through us via our energy centers called chakras. There are many chakras in the body but we usually focus on the 7 major ones that align with our spine from its base to the crown of our heads.

Each one has a specific purpose and vibrational frequency. They filter energy from the outside world, process that energy in our bodies by stimulating our endocrine glands to secrete various hormones. These hormones affect our physical, mental, and emotional health.

Worry, stress and fears – as well as deeper traumas from our past – create blocks in the energy flow.

Not all blocks to your energy flow are the same…

Perhaps you already know quite a bit about your chakras, perhaps not. I’ve learned one important distinction from Rhys Thomas of the Rhys Thomas Institute of Energy Medicine, along with Margaret M. Lynch that I’ve never heard anywhere else.

When you experienced what you considered to be a deep trauma or wounding, usually in your early childhood, you literally took a VOW to protect yourself from that happening again. A vow has a great deal of power and energy behind it. It acts on the subconscious level behind the scenes of our daily awareness, putting the breaks on what we say and do in our life. The vow gets embedded or stuck in that particular chakra. Releasing these vows and agreements brings you back into alignment with your Own True Self.

Why Clearing Your Lower Three Chakras is Vital to Your Health and Wellbeing

The issues of our first three chakras form the foundation for who we are in the world. The upper chakras – our Throat, Third Eye and Crown chakras – can only speak the truth of our wounds and traumas of the lower chakras.

For example, if we don’t feel safe in our first chakra we often live in our minds, replaying past events or looking towards future ones. Or, we numb out through all kinds of distractions and addictions. We’re not fully present in our physical bodies in the here and now.

If we were abused in our second chakra, the words we speak in our fifth chakra will reflect that we think the world is out to get us in some way. And we see the world through a victim’s eyes in our sixth chakra.

Our energy centers are in constant flux. Some issues are buried deeply, while others are daily frustrations that build up.

Ideally each chakra is fully open and all are in balance, not over- or under- active. Most of us though have a few chakras that are dominant, while others are smaller or nearly closed. By clearing blocked energies held in the chakras, our lives really do begin to flow with more ease and we feel our balance restored.

In this initial introduction to the chakras, meet your …

First, Base or Root Chakra

LKaun article2

Sanskrit Name: Muladhara –
Located at the base of your spine – Color Red
Issues of:

  • Trust and Safety in the World
  • Money – Abundance
  • Your Physical Body – Being present and grounded in your body
  • Family and Tribe – Your values and beliefs

Your first chakra is connected to your tribe, your family of origin. It’s the foundation of your life. Feeling safe and secure is important for your overall development.

This chakra channels your beliefs and values related to living in the world that you learned from your tribe … what you are allowed to do, to have, to become. Learning to step past the original teachings of your family, church, school and make your own choices is one of the keys to open and balance the first chakra.

It also represents everything solid in your life, acting as the manifestation channel, the magnet, pulling into physical form the things you desire such as good health, prosperity, and relationships.

When it’s blocked through underlying beliefs that say you’re not worthy or you don’t deserve the things you desire, you can’t actually manifest them into reality.

The vows and concerns of this chakra relate to being loyal to your family’s values and beliefs, their way of thinking and being in the world – “Life’s a struggle for people like us.” OR, rebelling against those values, “I’ll never be like my father!” When you’re in rebellion, you still don’t get to Be You.

If you didn’t feel secure in your family financially or emotionally, this feeling of lack, of “never enough” comes out in countless ways in your adult life, from sabotaging your efforts to build a business to holding back your talents and gifts because you believe you’re “not good enough.”

How Can We Clear These Vows and Blocks to Our Energy Flow?

There are many different modalities to open and balance our chakras, some more intense and deeper than others. From energy healing using EFT- Emotional Freedom Techniques or Reiki, to visualizations, meditation, gemstones, or color and sound therapy, each one has its place.

The key is to realize we do have the power to clear our own energy, either working with a practitioner or on our own. The more we take daily and even moment-to-moment responsibility for our own lives, the easier it becomes to really feel the energy moving in us, guiding us, revealing who we truly are so we choose to step into our own power. This is truly loving all aspects of us.

Here’s a Surprising Look in the Mirror of Your First Chakra

After downloading the pdf, simply follow the story prompts to fill in the blanks and discover a message that your first chakra has for you. You can write it out by hand or copy it into a Word Doc so you can complete your answers.

The key is to write quickly with the first thing that pops in your mind. Don’t dwell on each question. This bypasses your rational thinking brain and taps directly into the subconscious, delivering you a message that might surprise you.

Download the pdf, A Look in the Mirror.

This Story Completion ARTsignment™ is licensed under ARTella Creative Multimedia,

If you liked this taste of your First Chakra, I invite you to discover more about all your chakras and how they affect your life by downloading my Free Guide: 7 Fun Tips to Open Your Chakras & Get Your Energy Flowing Again. This comes with a powerful audio bonus – a daily Opening Chakras guided visualization, which helps release blocked energy in your chakras, both from past hurts and day-to-day issues that come up.

LKaun article3 And Here’s Another Fun Way To Keep Your Chakras Open

To easily balance your chakras, check out my wearable, functional art. Each chakra design is my interpretation of the energy of that chakra. As I work I embed the design with clearing, positive energy that helps open and balance your chakra as you wear or use the product.


With an emotionally open heart and a keenly perceptive mind, Linda Kaun holds the space for others to play and explore their own sacred inner guidance and wisdom. She loves working with creative people and heart-centered entrepreneurs who are ready to stop playing small and step into their power.

After a 30-year career as a fine art batik painter, she is delighted to be completing her ARTbundance™ Coaching and Facilitating Certification, where art, words, creativity and spirituality become a channel for transformation.

If you are ready to step further into your power, explore your hidden obstacles and discover hidden treasures, contact Linda: ( linda [at] ) or visit Linda Kaun ~ The Power of You

This is the first phase of my Power of You website. I invite you to join me for the second phase coming soon where we’ll be exploring how the Power of You is really the Power of Loving Yourself.


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Your Self-Care Compass by Cathy Carpenter

For the last few months, I’ve been embracing the image of a compass. It came to me in a guided meditation when we were asked to drop into our center and check in with where we are and what we’re feeling or experiencing. I like the image of a compass, rather than a balance beam, because the compass doesn’t judge your direction as good or bad, it just gauges how far you are from True North.

Today, I’d like to invite you to do a little art project to design a Self-Care Compass.

Consider for a moment what “True North” is for you in relation to self-care. It could be a photo of you when you were happy and healthy; it could be your word for the year; it could be a specific daily practice you’d like to cultivate. Feel free to journal on this idea of identifying your “True North.”

Then draw, collage, paint, assemble, embroider, etc. a design for your personal Self-Care Compass. For the other cardinal directions (east, south, west), consider depicting habits or comfort behavior you fall into, taking you away from “True North.” Some things might take you farther from “North” than others, so you can place them in rank order with the habits or behaviors most opposite to your ideal north toward the south point.

As you’re ranking in this way, try not to judge the behaviors, just recognize whether it contributes to your ideal North or not, and maybe make a notation on the outer edge of something you could choose instead to bring you back to North.

When your piece is done, display it somewhere accessible so you can look at it whenever you’re feeling less than great. Notice if you’re engaging in one of the habits or behaviors that take you away from North and ask yourself if you can choose something else to bring you back toward North.

Obviously, sometimes bad things happen and you need to work through grief or sadness or anger; but this activity will help you notice when you’re not pointing in the direction you want to go so you can make a gentle correction of course.

Here is a digital collage I made for my compass with images I found on Pinterest.

my self-care compass 011915

Cathy Carpenter is a creativity/life coach, tarot reader, fiction writer, blogger, visual artist, crafter, dreamer, and planner. She is on a path to find more deep satisfaction in her daily life creatively, emotionally, and spiritually. She wants to mix the magical and the mundane. As she’s exploring, she likes to share what she’s learning and would love to help you explore these themes as well. Go deeper. Explore your depths.

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7 Reasons to Get More Sleep by Tat Apostolova

If Sleep was a person, what would he or she look like? What would Sleep wear? How would Sleep think and behave?

When I first thought about this, I imagined my Sleep as a cheeky little boy, who played tricks on everybody. No wonder I was resisting sleep – if I fell asleep, Sleep could easily catch me off guard.

As I continued playing with my Sleep persona and got to know him better, I realized that he could influence many areas of my life, but the only trick he could play on people was to make them fall asleep at awkward times, in the middle of a meeting or while they were driving. He couldn’t play tricks on me while I was asleep… I had my kids for that!

When I surveyed my blog readers last year, I found (unsurprisingly) that I wasn’t alone in my love-hate relationship with sleep. 95% of the people who responded weren’t getting enough sleep. We all have too much on our plates and there are tons of things that we could be doing instead of sleep. But are we really giving ourselves the gift of more time if we’re skipping the sleep we need in favour of something else?

Here are just some benefits that will come to you when you make sure you’re getting enough sleep (and I’ve tested this for myself).

  1. Better health. Your body needs enough sleep to function properly.
  2. More energy.
  3. Better relationships.
  4. Increased productivity
  5. Positive outlook.
  6. More creative ideas.
  7. Life just seems better all around.

In November last year I dared myself to go to sleep at 9.30 pm every night for just one week. For the first few days I didn’t notice any positive changes. Yes, I was getting lots of sleep but nothing else was getting done. Tasks were piling up on my to-do list and I was starting to wonder what on earth I’d gotten myself into.

Until, on Day 6, I got up at 6 am to go to the gym, something I’d never managed to do in the 8 years since I’d had kids. On Day 7, I noticed that I was having a lot more patience for my children. In fact, patience wasn’t even required anymore, I was having fun. Their cheeky ways didn’t annoy me, they made me laugh. I was feeling creative and excited to start the day. Having failed the previous attempts to blog regularly, I wrote 24 posts and 2 newsletters in December, and it didn’t even feel like an effort. Getting more sleep was paying off!

After the challenge I’d decided to make the earlier bedtime an ongoing thing, but unfortunately somehow I’ve slipped into my old ways. So for me it’s time for another challenge and it starts on 2nd March. Do you need more sleep? Join me for the Get More Sleep challenge here.

Getmoresleep2015 Tat

Tat Apostolova is a blogger, freelance writer, an ARTbundance™ coach and a mum of three, who lives in Sydney, Australia (that’s why her spelling may look strange to some of you). Through her blog, Mum in search, Tat helps overwhelmed mums reconnect with themselves and find their dreams again.

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Self-Care: Starting Small by Jen Rowe

Many women find it easy and natural to help others. Call it maternal instinct, a big heart, or what you will, but many women are really great at caring for those around them. One thing that seems to be much more difficult is caring for themselves. I once worked in a place where my co-workers and I actually set a timer to remind us to use the restroom! No lie!

Have you ever found yourself so involved in what you were doing for others that when you finally took a breath you realized you hadn’t eaten, or rested–or even peed–in ages? If your answer is yes, I would be willing to bet that self-care doesn’t come easy for you. Oh, you probably “know” it’s a good idea to take a break now and then, but I’m guessing that REALLY TAKING TIME FOR YOURSELF feels foreign and selfish.

Let me assure you that, like the other ladies have pointed out, taking good care of yourself is a good idea! If you fall apart, who will fill your shoes? If you don’t practice good self-care what message will that send to the younger girls who look up to you?

I have finally realized that not taking proper care of myself tells the people around me (and my own sweet soul) that I don’t feel valuable enough to be worthy of the same kindness I show to others.

Let that sink in.

Is that healthy for anyone??? I’ll let you draw your own conclusions, but my answer is a BIG FAT NO!!!

So now that I know better, how do I do better?

Sometimes I do pretty well. Sometimes I will fall back into old patterns of self-neglect and will be sick, miserable, or both before I recognize it. After a recent crash and burn, a chat with my mentor/coach (the marvelous Marney Makridakis of brought forth a new image I can keep in mind to help me stay happy and healthy–the pink spoon!

pink spoon jrowe Here’s how it works: picture in your mind the little pink sample spoons they have at a certain ice cream parlor–the ones they use to give you a tiny taste of one of their 31 selections. Now picture yourself trying out little samples of a variety of self-loving activities, like 5 minutes of yoga, half a bottle of cold water, a 60-second stretch, a brief prayer like “thank you.” Even the busiest person in the world can pause now and then to sample self-care!

So I’ve made a list of self-care activities that I can try. I’ve put them on a pink index card and called it “My Pink Spoon S.P.A.” (sanity protection activities). I’ve been experimenting with taking little “tastes” of self-kindness throughout my day. They are tiny little segments of time, so I don’t feel selfish or lazy or unproductive. As I get more comfortable, maybe I’ll take bigger samples of the “flavors” I enjoy.

Give it a try and tell me how it works for you! Somehow I’m positive that YOU ARE WORTH IT! 🙂
soulfood-jrowe ==================================
Also, try Jen’s Soul Food ARTsignment for even more self-care ideas!

Soul Food ARTsignment PDF download link.
Jen Rowe (Coach Jen) is a perpetual student with over 20 years experience in Alcoholism/Addiction Recovery. She loves animals, is always making something, and is obsessed with circles. Her favorite question–a gift from a long-ago mentor–is, “But what are you grateful for?” Jennifer is an enthusiastic advocate for the homeless, the mentally ill, and animals in need of rescue, and names Being a Voice for the Voiceless as part of her Life Mission. In addition to selling handmade items and designing hats, she helps women to achieve their Big Dreams using creativity and right brain tools to search for solutions. Connect with Jen at

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Valentine Mine by Cathy Carpenter

Whenever I’m single on Valentine’s Day, I use it as a day of self-care! You can do this with or without a romantic partner, any day of the year – pick a day to be your own Valentine.

ccarpenter-vtine My perfect day …
This was a number of years ago, but I remember it vividly because I crafted it to be perfect. I still had to go to work and keep my normal schedule, but my “me” time in the evening was just what the doctor ordered. I bought some multi-colored roses for the dining table. I picked up my favorite Italian take-out and a bottle of my favorite red wine. I took a bath with sweet lemon oil while I listened to a Chris Botti CD. I soaked until my tummy was rumbling. Then I put on a bathrobe, reheated my dinner, and poured a generous glass of wine. I ate in my robe watching the last episode of “Pride and Prejudice” with Colin Firth. I capped my evening with a few gourmet chocolate truffles. All of my senses were satisfied and I went to bed happy as a clam.

Your perfect day …
First, let’s imagine your perfect day of pampering. What are you craving? What could you experience to make it a delicious, luxurious day? Let’s go through each of the senses and make it a rich, multi-faceted experience. Here are some examples, but choose whatever makes you light up.

* Would you like to watch a romantic movie?
* Would you like to read a racy novel?

* Would you like a dozen roses?
* Would you like an aromatherapy candle?

* Would you like a box of raspberry truffles?
* Would you like take-out from your favorite restaurant?

* Would you like a bubble bath?
* Would you like a massage?

* Would you like to listen to your favorite CD?
* Would you like to listen to nature sounds?

Spirit/6th Sense
* Would you like to do a guided meditation?
* Would you like to write in your journal?

Your perfect moment …
It’s fun to make a self-care event to make yourself feel really special, but you don’t need to make a big production of self-care every time. Check in at least once per week and notice which of your senses would like some extra attention. Pick one thing to treat that sense and do it in a moment. It can be something simple:

* Taste some fresh, clean water
* Watch a cloud go by
* Listen to a bird chirping
* Smell your favorite tea before you take a sip
* Feel your heartbeat in your chest
* Notice something to be grateful for

Big or little, a day or a moment, find ways to treat yourself. Be your own Valentine. Show up for yourself, take care of yourself, love yourself!

Another aspect of self-care is to get better acquainted with yourself! You’ll know better how you want and need your self-care when you really know who you are.

Check out my new e-workbook, The Art of Self-Examination! ($18 – get $5-off in February with code 2014ASECD5)

In addition, consider Empress Yourself, my tarot tele-class using the archetype of the Empress for self-development, on Tuesday, March 11 (Also $18, use the same code 2014ASECD5 for $5-off)

Cathy Carpenter is a creativity/life coach, tarot reader, fiction writer, blogger, visual artist, crafter, dreamer, and planner. She is on a path to find more deep satisfaction in her daily life creatively, emotionally, and spiritually. She wants to mix the magical and the mundane. As she’s exploring, she likes to share what she’s learning and would love to help you explore these themes as well. Go deeper. Explore your depths.