Beauty In Transformation

Today I was visited by this little fellow – the third tortoiseshell butterfly to grace this space in the last month. I originally wrote this post when the first little chap unexpectedly arrived, the second one arrived to nudge me in to writing it up, and now the third is REALLY shouting their message of transformation at me! He even settled on to my laptop!

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The first one was a gorgeous surprise, not only because it was fully autumn, and now pretty much Winter, here in the UK, but also because he appeared indoors, in my bedroom. It was as though he appeared by magic, in all his grace, ease & beauty.

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Yet I was struck that it was very likely that the part I didn’t see, the part before the unveiling of the amazing, intricate wings, was anything but easy, graceful or beautiful. The caterpillar creating the chrysalis, the feeling of something ending, letting go, trusting the process, the dying off of the old, to allow the transformation into the new.

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Timing is everything & not only did my first graceful visitor come during a time when I was working behind the scenes on my new website & it felt like pulling teeth, whilst I was pulling my hair out, but he also came to remind me that Autumn is the season of the Metal Element, which has letting go, dying off to make way for the new, connecting with beauty & grace in transformation, at its very heart.

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Any big change, any big growing, any step along the road to transformation can be challenging, it can feel uncomfortable, it can feel hard. It’s when we are nearest to the biggest & best changes, those which are going to have the biggest impacts on our lives, the bit beforehand feels like the hardest part. Sometimes, like  the hardest part we have ever endured.

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From the perspective of the butterfly I gained space, room to breathe. He awakened in me a knowledge that even the hardest struggle is worth it. It is worth it for the breathtaking transformation & beauty that comes after it. Transformation isn’t always easy, but my goodness it is magnificent.

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So, for me, I need to let go & trust that the launch of my new website & everything after it will bring beauty, ease & grace, even though I’m struggling to trust it right now & things feel overwhelming. The autumn needs to come & the leaves need to fall off the trees in order for the new buds & blossom to appear in the Spring.

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What do you need to think like the butterfly about? Are you going through a website or branding transformation? Are you considering retraining or looking for a new job? Is there something in your life that has a lack of ease at the moment? Are you growing & need some support in your chrysalis time? Could you benefit from acupuncture or coaching as you go through your transformation? Let me know in the comments below!

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© Rhiannon Griffiths 2013

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How I Overcame My Fear of Flying with 7 Flights in One Month

I had been wanting to write this post ever since I got back from Australia, in fact, I had started to write it several times whilst I was Down Under, but for some reason I just never finished it or hit that “publish” button. It was only when I read that the May edition of empowering female Aussie magazine “Wild Sister” was about SISTERHOOD, did I understand why the universe hadn’t wanted me to publish the post on this blog – it wanted me to share my powerful story with ALL the wild sisters out there!

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Wild Sister Sisterhood

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So, I am super thrilled that the fabulous Jen Saunders and her beautiful team of gorgeous souls felt my story had the right fit for this latest edition of the magazine. It expands upon WHY I went to Australia, it is my LOVE letter to all the ladies I met in Connie Chapman’s 90 Day Transformation Project, HOW I summoned up the COURAGE to travel to the other side of the world, despite having a phobia of flying, and it links seamlessly into the notion behind my “Awesome Aussies” vlog series!

You can read my article by getting a copy of this incredible magazine online – I am on page 35, but it also has a few more of my favourite people – Vienda Maria and Tara Bliss – plus articles about self love, walking your path, healthy living tips and affirmations.

Sisterhood Edition of Wild Sister

It is five Australian dollars or roughly £3 – which is about the same as a negative, trashy gossip mag – this wondrous creation (an online pdf) has none of the crappy adverts, no comparing yourself to photo-shopped models, no criticism of people’s outfits, body shape or choice of haircut and the like, just a fabulous array of 50+ pages of inspiration, positivity and abundance! And it includes videos of yoga poses and meditations – you don’t get those in a paper magazine!

Click here to grab a copy online & read my article – it is only available to the public until the end of May! I would absolutely LOVE to hear what you think! Never forget, “you are braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think”, A.A.Milne.

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© Rhiannon Griffiths 2013

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Awesome Aussies – Jia Ni Teo

I am utterly thrilled to share another one of my “Awesome Aussies” with you today… she is another beautiful health-focused soul that I met during my trip to Australia in March. The second person in my Awesome Aussies blog series is the fabulous Jia Ni Teo.

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Who is Jia Ni? She is an intuitive life coach, the creator of the “Happy, Healthy, Abundant in 6 Weeks” online program, and is now looking to work with energy blocks within her clients.

In Australia we met up: in Sydney, and went to the Conscious Club.

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jia ni & rhiannon pic

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I also met Jia Ni online during Connie Chapman’s 90 Day Transformation Project last year, as I did with so many of the women I will be featuring in this blog series… hear in this video below about our time together in that group, and all about why my favourite subject – ENERGY – is sooooo important for holistic health, and what great things Jia Ni is now doing by working with energy as well as nutrition.

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Visit jianiteo.com for more information and to get tons of free goodies that give you just a TASTE of the fabulous things this girl has to offer!

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© Rhiannon Griffiths 2013

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Belated Post: Why I’m Going to Australia

I just found the following in my travel journal, and wanted to share – kind of a #latergram for the blog world… have altered ever so slightly from its original version to make is appropriate for this space. Enjoy! R x

UK to Australia

I’m sat in Heathrow Airport waiting for my flight to Singapore, which will eventually lead me to Brisbane, Australia. I got here super early as my Water needed to be at the airport – all risks of missing the flight, getting stuck in traffic, rushing, rising panic, eliminated by arriving early… that’s what Water is about, assessing and eliminating risk. So, with this in mind, you won’t be surprised that I am NOT a good flier… this means ANY flight is super frightening, and even contemplating (let alone booking!) a 24 hour flight to the other side of the world sets off the alarm bells on the “risk assessor”, big time! So this trip is a pretty BIG deal.

Why am I even thinking about it then?! Well, if you had treatment with me in clinic during 2012, chances are you know it was an incredibly challenging time health wise for me – repeated bouts of tonsillitis, then a severe unknown virus that affected my liver and kidneys, leaving me with chronic adrenal fatigue. And although I am TONS better, I still get some relapses of fatigue. The Christmas break had a couple, and heading in to 2013 I saw the potential for more episodes… with all the reflection and taking stock that comes with the arrival of a new year, I wanted 2013 to be about POSITIVE health, and to bring some new INSPIRATION, products, opportunities and services to my practice. I really want 2013 to be DIFFERENT to last year. I didn’t know how to make it different… so I went to the complete OPPOSITE end of the spectrum in terms of my comfort zone. And as Thomas Jefferson said, “If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done”… and I have certainly never done anything as big, SCARY or crazy as this!

Thomas Jefferson

This place [Heathrow] is so busy, the energy is crazy – busy, nervous, jittery, exhausting, tearful – waaay too much for a Water Element who is already scared, nervous and jittery. I am having to remind myself of the STILLNESS that is a virtue of the Water Element – see, we do have a positive flip side to all that scary fear! Sitting in a corner, quietly listening to meditations on my ipod is the only thing keeping my nerves at bay. I see some children. They are tired, scared, overwhelmed, and not being understood by their parents – behind the tears is fear. I empathise hugely. I feel just like them.

I am tired, but hopefully that will (for once in this chronic adrenal fatigue journey) go in my favour as I board a night flight. I am scared about the flight, scared of being trapped onboard, scared of freaking out, scared about vomiting for 24 hours, scared of not being able to sleep, scared of horrendous jet lag, scared the trip will make my chronic fatigue worse, scared I will spend the whole time in Australia in bed, even scared that I will love it so much out there I won’t want to come home – yeah, a whole BIG BUCKET of scared.

Tony Robbins

But I know I HAVE to do this. The importance of this trip is MASSIVE. Things in my life need to CHANGE, and as Tony Robbins says, “By changing nothing, nothing changes…” So yeah, I’m changing it up. Changing it up in the BIGGEST way possible. And I have NO idea what is ahead.

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© Rhiannon Griffiths 2013

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Self Love Day

For me, Valentine’s Day has always been about checking in with myself, ensuring I am maintaing a positive, healthy, compassionate relationship with myself. This includes cutting myself some slack, not being so perfectionist, embracing my “weirdness”, being proud of my sensitivity, celebrating my MAGIC, and making time for self-care.

This hasn’t always been the case, as a teenager I didn’t like myself at ALL. I struggled with being different, and couldn’t understand why I felt things so deeply and so acutely, then when Valentine’s Day came around it just accentuated the absence of a special someone, and the obligatory chocolates, flowers and cupid’s vomit of heart-shaped everything pretty much everywhere. Now that last sentence makes it sounds as though I hate Valentine’s Day, and I REALLY don’t, it’s just I KNOW love has to start with the SELF, bucket-loads of it, and that’s what the day should be about.

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So with this in mind, you can imagine my excitement and glee when I was emailed by the gorgeous Michelle from Sacred Self to say that I had won her latest giveaway, and that my prize was an eBook from Julie Parker over at Beautiful You! The timing could not have been better! Today has been the perfect day to sit down with a cup of Pukka LOVE tea (my favourite, and yearly Valentine’s gift to myself!) and read through the inspiring, uplifting and affirming quotations.

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Self Love Quotes ebook pic

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My goodness, so so beautiful!! It is a veritable feast of self-love, and the stunning illustrations that accompany each page, just highlight the amazing gorgeousness of it all! You cannot help but take in the compliments that are sent straight in to your heart as you scroll down each page… it’s good for today, but it would be GREAT for ANY day of the year – love is not just for Valentine’s, it’s for life! (Even better, at the moment, Julie has a “pay what you want” offer on the eBook over at her site!)…

We ARE beautiful, we ARE worthy, we ARE good enough, we ARE loveable, we ARE pretty damn amazing, incredible and gorgeous creatures – each and every one of us, remember THAT on Valentine’s Day and you won’t go far wrong!

Sending YOU tons of goodness and LOVE

R xx

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© Rhiannon Griffiths 2013

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Irritable Bowel Syndrome on BBC Radio Oxford

At the beginning of the week I was asked to go on BBC Radio Oxford’s afternoon show to talk about Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and how acupuncture can help sufferers with their symptoms. ITV’s Dr Hilary Jones was also on the show to give the conventional medicine view, and to highlight a new study into the illness that suggests 45% of Britons suffer some form of digestive problem.

IBS is an umbrella term for many digestive issues such as pain or discomfort in the abdomen – anywhere between the chest and the hips – and also includes changes in frequency or consistency of stools.

Jo Thoenes (of “Jo in the Afternoon” fame) spoke to a lovely patient of mine, and fellow alternative therapist, Anna Shaw, about how treatment with me helped her with bloating and pain, that was affected by stress and her menstrual cycle. And I explained how we view IBS in Chinese Medicine – all to do with the smooth flow of Qi or energy within the body. Take a listen to what she, and I, said below:

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Emotions can also disrupt the smooth flow of Qi. Stress, frustration or anger can cause energy to move upwards, interrupting the digestive energy’s normal flow. Worry can knot the Qi, causing stagnation, that creates pain and bloating.

We can also offer advice underpinned by Chinese Food Energetics, identifying possible food intolerances, like wheat or dairy, guiding patients toward better food choices. Additionally with IBS, adding in foods that help promote the smooth flow of energy in the body can be beneficial – these foods include green tea, lemon, carrots and almonds – stick around for a recipe and Spring baking film coming your way next week with these very ingredients! As Spring is the season when energy is all about flow and movement and growth, its particularly important to ensure the smooth and correct flow of Qi at this time!

If you recognise some of the symptoms discussed during the show, contact me to discuss how acupuncture could help you have a better quality of life – stop thinking about the potential of needing to go to the toilet wherever you are, stop thinking about whether you can wear your favourite slinky outfit or whether your tummy is too bloated, stop thinking about if you can eat out at a fabulous restaurant without getting pain… start living and feel better! If you’re weary of needles, talk to me about how Chinese Food Energetics could make a difference to your diet.

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© Rhiannon Griffiths 2012

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Woody Springtime

So Spring has sprung… well, it kinda sprung, then jumped to a week or so of Summer heat, then the snow came back and we all put our mittens and earmuffs back on… and now, it sort of seems right, April showers are here and we’re uncertain what kind of coat we should be wearing – yep, that sounds like Spring to me!

In Chinese Medicine Spring is the season associated with the Wood Element. It represents a new beginning, a coming out of the hibernation and inward energy of the Winter. There is a real push to this Yang Woody Spring energy, a force to it – like the “shout” tone of voice, the assertion, justice and defiance associated with the Element. I guess there has to be a strength to this Element and season, all the shoots need this kind of energy – they are coming up and out of the bulbs and seeds after a Winter underground, waiting, storing all their energy ready for this time when the light and temperature increases.

The colour of the Wood Element, and Spring is very aptly green, the movement of energy (or Qi) is upwards and outwards. Quite literally, I see the Wood Element in my mind as a tree, the branches reaching upwards to the sky, and outwards, growing, moving forward with strength, blossoming and blooming with leaves, flowers, and fruits – it is this positive, busy, expansive and increasing energy that we can tap into at this time of year.

The Wood Element (along with its organs of the Liver and Gall Bladder) is all about vision of the future, planning, acting on those plans and moving forward. The sense organ of Wood is the eyes, so we can “see” things in different ways during the Spring. We may have new visions, feel compelled to start a new venture, or to pick up on something we put down during the Winter months… its no surprise that everyone feels inspired to get to work on the garden, the home or the DIY as soon as Spring arrives! It’s all about new projects!

People who have Wood as their CF (Element, or constitutional factor) can thrive during this time – as the old saying goes, they really can be “in their Element”!! Ideas blossom, things flower – reflecting the activity in nature and in our gardens. Or it can be a difficult period where they feel as though they should be moving forward, but can’t. It can be difficult to “see” where the future plans or vision should be, the Qi (or energy) doesn’t flow upwards or outwards as it should, it can get stuck and stagnant… this can create what I refer to as a Springtime depression.

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And don’t forget, although we tend to revert back to one “default Element” or CF – mine is Water – we do actually all have all Five of the Elements within us, working together (harmoniously, or otherwise!), so we can ALL feel pushed positively forward on this wave of Woody springtime energy, or feel a bit lacking and unable to “see” ahead.

A tree can be flexible, bending in the wind, and weathering the storm, as long as it’s branches are properly nourished… if the tree is lacking or deficient, it can become stiff and brittle, breaking easily at the first sign of stress. And this is how some of us can feel during the Spring. We may have done too much during the Winter, or been exhausted by coughs and colds at the beginning of the year… as the rest of the world around us starts to blossom and push forward with Wood energy, we can feel flat and unable to move forward at all.

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This disparity between what we feel inside, and what the rest of the busy world appears to be doing outside, can cause us to feel hopeless, stuck and numb, we may feel as though we (or “our branches”) might break if we even try to do anything at all.

Whichever way you’re feeling at the moment, acupuncture can provide a real boost during this change of season, helping you to top up your energies, to move forward in a way that you want, overcoming any stagnation or frustrations. Treatment at this time can also help with hay fever (that might be starting to creep in around now?!) and can expel any pathogens left over from Winter that we haven’t quite managed to shake off yet… and in true Wood Element style, this “forward planning” of sorts, actually leaves our immune systems in better shape for next Winter! So Spring into action and contact me now, to start something new and positive today – acupuncture!

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© Rhiannon Griffiths 2012

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