I'M DARA, and I TRULY BELIEVE THAT IF YOU WANT TO ACHIEVE EVERYTHING YOU DREAM OF, YOU NEED TO BE INCREDIBLY RESILIENT.
Being resilient means you recover quickly from the challenges, difficulties, and stresses that come your way in life — whether these adversities arise in the realm of your health, your relationships, work, or otherwise. Cultivating physical and emotional resilience both allows you to bounce back easily from the kind of setbacks we all encounter, which is key if you want to live a life you love. Who wants to be sick in bed, crippled with heartbreak or disappointment when things don't go your way, or stuck in the same spot in life when the longing to move forward is strong? Not me, and probably not you either!
WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES OF NOT BEING RESILIENT?
Trust me, I know these well! I spent a giant chunk of my life — all of my twenties really — feeling like a total wreck. Lacking any sort of resilience, I was pretty much paralyzed. I was incapable emotionally and physically from being able to take the action that I needed to in order to be of service to this world, take charge of my life's direction, have thriving supportive relationships, and step into my role as leader. Maybe you can relate.
I was sick all of the time, chronically ill with recurrent, pernicious infections, with so much tension in my body that the TMJ I had in my jaw caused it to click so loudly you could hear it all the way across the room! I was a victim in my life, felt unsupported by even the closest relationships in my life, and was isolated, lonely, and unhappy, with no direction. All the Western doctors could offer was antibiotics, and I needed so much more. I felt despair, like life was working against me, and I had a looming feeling that my life was over at the age of twenty-nine. I had no idea what to do next.
I was living in a constant state of fight or flight, like the proverbial tiger was chasing after me, and had no tools or skills to sooth myself or rise up out of my complete disempowerment. I had a therapist to help me begin to heal the deeper wounds, but oh how I wish I'd had a coach to help me see the power that I had inside me to change my attitude and shift the world around me!
I really would have done just about anything at that point to get well and forge a path to a different life. Thankfully, someone did appear who recognized my potential and begin guiding me back to health and wholeness. Thank god! I was in Arizona and booked a session with a woo woo healer who had been recommended by an acquaintance. Laying on the table, smoke from burning sage wafting over me as he waved eagle feathers, he performed a method of subtle energy work on me. I'd never heard of it before but like I said, I was desperate for any healing I could get. He was a supremely radiant older man, and after the session, he sat me down. He looked me straight in the eyes and said:
"YOU are a healer," he said. "But first you must heal yourself before you can heal others." I didn't know how to take this. Really? Me, a healer? I had no concept of how that might ever come to be, but his words rang true to some deep and ancient part of me, and I held this idea in my heart for years to come.
My real journey towards wellness was set in motion by some connections he made for me. I got off the birth control pill and quit sugar cold-turkey. I took herbal tinctures for the first time ever, did a juice cleanse, consumed weird green powders I'd never seen before, got a job at an organic farmer's market, learned about fermented foods, and realized, very belatedly, that antibiotics were not ever going to make me well and that food is medicine. I was introduced to the concept that my nervous system and inability to relax affected my overall health and that learning how to not always be in a constant parasympathetic-dominant state was an integral part of my healing.
As a result, when I started the business that would bring together my lifelong interest in food and cooking soon after, The Sage Table, it was important to me that the classes I was teaching had a definitive bent toward nutrition and health. How could it not, when I was in the midst of a journey back to radiant health and that was all I wanted to do really - learn more and more about nutrition and how to improve my heath. So I have spent the past decade learning more and more about health, and the resilience of body, mind and spirit required to create and sustain enviable wellness. I have learned that while food is an important tool, there is so much more, and I have had to shift my approach to self-care in just about every regard so I could see all of the places that I was out of alignment with what I most deeply wanted to be creating for myself. It's required commitment to myself and my health above all. To be honest, it's been an arduous journey to this place of enviable wellness and to finally get firmly on the path towards a life in alignment with my deepest wisdom and capabilities, but here's the thing:
I have a unique breadth and depth to me because of what I've experienced and healed. And I know A LOT about health and wellness, personal commitment, and what it really takes to heal and bring about lasting transformation— whether it be in body, mind, or spirit. I'm fully empowered to change the things in my life that no longer serve me, and I'm here to help other women do the same thing. In many ways, I've become the healer I was told I would become, and now it's my mission to help YOU be happier, healthier, and stronger.
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