Big Love Weekend!

When I’m not looking to the stars for meaning or getting down with my Kundalini yoga flow, I do my best to give back to the world I’m in.  And that’s why I’m an Ambassador of Love for God’s Love We Deliver in NYC.

God’s Love We Deliver is the area’s leading provider of life-sustaining meals and nutritional counseling for people living with severe illnesses. Meals are tailored for individual clients, cooked, and delivered to them, their families, and caregivers free of charge, without ever having a waiting list.

To raise awareness for this incredible cause, Jason Patrick, a.k.a. Bearded Yogi, created BIG LOVE WEEKEND benefitting God’s Love We Deliver.

Here’s the low down: 

BIG LOVE WEEKEND begins with a Wellness Day on Saturday, February 28, 2015.  The Wellness Day is a mini-festival held at The Waterfront. It will feature an inspirational talk by Gabby Bernstein; yoga with Elena Brower and Guillaume Brun; an Inten-sati class with Patricia Moreno; a #DOGPOUND workout with Kirk Myers Fitness; an exquisite puja ceremony; and two Wellness Panels with leaders and experts in the fields of Health and Wellness.

On Sunday, March 1, 2015, we celebrate our fundraising efforts and personal transformation at the wellness day with an epic party.  The event will be a lavish display of appreciation for gifting us with your presence and selfless service fundraising.  There will be gourmet food, artisanal cocktails, live performances, dancing and celebrity appearances.

I would absolutely love to have you come get down with me for this amazing weekend!  For ticket information or to donate to my fundraiser, go here.

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I’m also interviewing Jason on the Life Coach Radio Network to learn more about God’s Love We Deliver, his own amazing journey, how Big Love Weekend came to be and how YOU can become an Ambassador of Love!

LIVE Broadcast begins on Sunday, 2/8 at 9:00PM EST
How to Listen: 
Your Computer – Log into Blogtalkradio at showtime via this link.
Your Phone – Listen via audio by calling (347) 637-1960. If you wish to speak me and Jason during the show, simply hit “1”

Can’t make the live show? You can relisten via the link above after it airs!

Again, to donate to my fundraising efforts, go to https://www.crowdrise.com/Danielle-BigLoveWknd/fundraiser/daniellemercurio

More on Jason:

Jason’s main purpose in teaching yoga is to help people fully actualize the potential that we all carry within ourselves and to help cultivate our ever-expanding culture of acceptance. He is humbly, first and foremost, a student; he continues to study with gifted teachers around the world taking their workshops and trainings knowing that it all leads to a deeper understanding of one’s self, ie, to be of service. Learn more at www.beardedyogi.com or Bearded Yogi Jason Patrick

Why Mercury Retrograde makes me giddy!

Perhaps I’m bias because my last name is ruled by the planet Mercury. Or maybe it’s just the fact that I consider myself to be a Mercurial girl by nature, however I’m growing to LOVE Mercury in Retrograde.

You may be thinking, “Dear Lord, she’s officially lost it. She’s gotten so swept up in the cosmos that she’s completely out of sync with the real world!” And in some ways, yes that’s true. Though on a grander scale, it’s merely the opposite. All planetary shifts occur to create a sense of order in what we consider to be our reality. So when the planet Mercury starts to go “backwards”, it’s not really trying to create waves of chaos or destroy your microwave! It simply wants you to slow down and look at things in a new way.

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Mercury is the planet of communication, messages and technology. The energy it radiates is so powerful that we feel it on our earth plane. Typically, it functions to help manage how you correspond with the outside world. Every 3-4 months though, it needs a break. To stop dealing with what’s going on outside of you and bring more of your awareness within.

And quite frankly, that kind of self-reflection can scare the shit out of people.

So a giant stigma around this trend was created. Instead of acknowledging this as a time to redirect us to some much needed self-love, it’s feared as the time when the world crashes around us. Here’s the thing, as my dear friend Ruby coins it best, “The Universe is your homeboy. It loves YOU!” And in that love there is a plan and much going on behind the scenes that you may not even be able to comprehend right now. As such, it’s a period to step out of your way of “I know best” thinking and possibly explore what can be refined. It’s an opportunity to lighten up your schedule and workload so you can find new ways to be MORE productive going forward. And if you ignore this opening as directed and book yourself full or spend too much time trying to fix everyone else, then things are going to backfire.

For example, you have a to-do list that is completely swapped. And then your car breaks down on the way to a new client (that you don’t really have the time to take on but worried you need the money). And your cell phone battery dies when you try call for help. Yes, that all totally sucks and you can thank the Mercury Retrograde for those happenings. They could have been prevented however if you had just cleared more time on your schedule to focus on finishing lingering tasks and then spent the remaining time reorganizing your closet or taking a bath. All of which turned out to be way more cost-efficient than the first scenario. You following? Again, this turnaround phase isn’t looking to give you more challenges, however push you into more productive habits and take better care of yourself! If you fight it, it’ll fight you right back my dear. If you embrace it, you’ll find yourself in a space of feeling super charged and rejuvenated!

My motto during this time is to “RISE ABOVE” the retrograde! And do so with a smile please. For far too many people misunderstand or do not know at all the true intent of Mercury’s reversal behavior and for that you need to smile and stay positive. We must carry the space so that we can use this time efficiently and be open to the mishaps along the way.

Trust me, I’ve already had a few blunders during this round and it was completely annoying. And instead of getting mad or ignoring the whole thing. I dealt with the situation and realized it showed up to lead me in another direction. One that actually feels more open and productive. So how about that!

So remember, Mercury Retrograde isn’t something that happens TO you, it’s actually a gift the universe is providing FOR you, if you can just recognize what you’re truly gaining by going within.  How will you rise above? How can you use this as a time to be more productive and enhance your way of living? I’d love to know! Share your favorite ways to work with the backward energy that actually move you forward!

Ready to Tackle Holiday Stress & Bad Eating Habits?

Do you dread the holiday season and what it will do to your waistline?  Are you already cringing at the thought of a gingerbread and egg nog binge?  Instead of a joyous one, the holidays can often be a time of chaos and overeating, which leads to stress, guilt and self blame.

Join me LIVE in NYC on Tuesday, Nov. 26th at 7p.m. as I show you how to not only survive holiday eating without the added weight, but still be able to eat and drink what you want too!  It really IS possible! You’ll learn the proven ways to lower your holiday stress and how not to get wild at the buffet line!

I’ll teach you the tools I’ve implemented to lose 40 pounds (and keep it off) without all the restrictions and calorie counting that some diets call for.  You’ll leave with new methods that you can confidently start using right away, at Thanksgiving and right into the New Year!  You may even shock everyone when you LOSE weight during the season!  There will be mindful eating exercises as well as light meditation, please let me know if you have any dietary restrictions!

So let’s leave the big red stretchy pants for Santa shall we??

More information can be found via eventbrite: https://holidayeatingsurvival.eventbrite.com

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Defeating the ‘Carrie Bradshaw’ Factor!

I’ve been based in NYC a while now and I think a lot about the ‘Carrie Bradshaw Factor’.

There is an increasing trend of individuals in the 23-34 age group (women especially), that are flocking to the city in hopes of the fantasy life of posh evenings out, gorgeous men and unique job opportunities.  Instead, they are finding themselves broke, single and feeling ‘stuck in the city’. I also had fallen into that trap and found myself unhappy, frustrated and overweight.  Given such, it’s important to find ways you can incorporate the city life you’re craving, without having to settle, feel added pressure or let down.  Follow these fast and simple tips to amplify your city chic experience!

Date a human, not a fantasy!

Let go of some of the high standards set for the perfect partner.  It’s a lot of pressure to put on the other person on a first date! This is the time to relax and have fun. Be open to the possibilities and remember that often times you don’t always know what’s best for you. You might be surprised and find more than what you thought you were looking for!  Or at best, make a great new friend.

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No one talks about all those late night liquid calories!

The more fun and colorful a cocktail, the more chance of racking up the pounds. Limit yourself to just one of these drinks when out on the town. Sip slowly and actually savor it. Switch to a cleaner drink, such as vodka club and alternate water in between cocktails. Also, remember why you are out! Develop a relationship with the friends you are with and potentially meeting new people, not a love affair with a daiquiri.

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Become a confident, fearless go getter!

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking people are watching your every move. Realize that what others think of you is none of your business. Follow your gut instinct and see it through. You have to live with your decisions and it allows you to develop a better relationship with yourself. You come across as more poised and self-reliant, which will attract more positive experiences and people into your world.

Have a tip for easily being fabulous in the city? I’d love to know! Share with a  comment below!

How to Stand Out in your New City!

It’s time for another episode of New You City Chat!  This week, I discuss the challenges you may encounter when relocating and what you can do to off set them.

Remember that the key to all of this is to be YOU.  Radiant your true self and the right people and places will come into your world naturally.  Feel really proud of what you’ve accomplished and how courageous you are to make such a big transition!

Have a moving tip or advice on how to make the most of a new city? Let me know and leave a comment!

My Crush on Deepak Chopra & How You Can Benefit! Learn the Simple Way to Maximize Your Mind-Body Connection.

The past few days I’ve been blessed with some knockout ‘in the present’ moments! 

First was Electric Daisy Carnival, a festival where the waves of music and the beat filled my body.  I danced for hours upon end and just let myself be captivated by the people around me and the sky above with all its vast possibilities.  I felt aligned and in connected to my truth. 

The second was the Super Soul Sunday feature on Maya Angelou.  Her ability to overcome so many hardships and stay eternally grateful blows me away.  She broke down into tears when she expressed the following:

“It humbles me that this force, that made leaves and fleas and stars, rivers… and you… loves me.  It’s amazing!  I can do anything and do it well.  It’s why I am who I am.”

My heart sang to her and I couldn’t help the tears of amazement that came in return.  Knowing that this higher strength believes and supports in me (and YOU!) brings everything I could ask in this moment.

Lastly, I had the opportunity to see Sanjiv and Deepak Chopra discuss their book collaboration, Brotherhood.  Can I just say that Deepak is a total rock star?  From his collarless blazer and jeans to his sleek specs and effortless gray hair, he looked astonishing.  I hadn’t felt this giddy since my days of getting the latest Teen Bop with Leonardo DiCaprio on the cover.

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He and his brother (also a Doctor and medical professor at Harvard), talked of growing up in India, the struggles of coming to the U.S. and their different views on Western and Complementary medicine.  The overwhelming theme of the evening was what could happen with determination and the ability of knowing you are capable.  Deepak expressed that the biggest lesson he learned in this regard was to stop feeding off the approval of others.  When you are taking a risk, there are many people that may not approve and simply for that reason.  By pushing through anyway, you may discover something inherently valuable that no one would’ve seen and further benefit society. Feeding off this energy was Sanjiv, who suggested that daring to dream may create some short term discomfort, while playing it safe creates nothing.

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At the end of the evening, a request was made for Deepak to lead the group in a guided meditation.  It was a simple 2 minute exercise; however those brief moments filled me with such peace and clarity.  I invite you to benefit and replicate what I was able to practice.  Below is the same meditation, transcribed to the best of my ability:

Start with a good, solid seat.  Close your eyes.  Simply Breathe.

Keep your attention on the breath.  Ask yourself – “Who am I?”  Stay steady on your breath, allowing whatever images or feelings come to mind.

Next, feel your heart and ask yourself – “What do I feel?”

Go back to the breath.  Now ask, “What do I want?”

Allow your mind to settle into your breath. “What is my purpose?” 

Ask – “What is my passion and how can I serve?”  Remember to focus on the initial feelings.  Do not look for the answers as they are deep within your soul.

Let whatever is happening in the moment swirl through your mind a few moments longer. 

Open your eyes.

You need not have meditation experience to do this, just a few moments and an openness to try.  Give yourself time between each question.  Notice if your mind and body start to come together.  This brief session is an amazing way to get to know yourself a little better or just set a more positive tone to start out your day.  You may even want to journal or jot down a few of the thoughts or emotions that came up for you.

We often spend so much time re-hashing the past and beating ourselves over what we should’ve done differently.  And if we aren’t doing that, we are creating anxieties over what is going to happen tomorrow.  The thing is that we don’t know what will happen.  The beauty in that is you are given a choice.  You can focus on what may potentially go wrong or you can put an emphasis on trusting that you have everything you need to tackle the future.  This type of thinking can bring more satisfaction and calmness NOW, so that you can have clarity and resourcefulness for what lies ahead.

I would love for you to share in the comments your favorite ‘being present’ adventures!  Whether it’s a type of meditation, activity or mantra, please reveal your way to in the moment bliss!

 

Right Here, Right Now.

With the recent devastation in Boston, as well as the unheard of tragedies that occur on a daily basis, it really made me think about how precious our time is and if I am truly enjoying each day like my last.  A wonderful coaching peer* and I were discussing the importance of being present and basing our actions on current moments (not the ones from yesterday or the anticipated ones of tomorrow), because you really never know what the next one has in store for us.

As such, I’ve listed 7 simple ways to be more present in your everyday life.  Practicing this kind of mindfulness can lessen anxiety, allow you to make decisions faster and elevate your confidence.  Find one that you relate with most and try to implement it throughout the week!

  1. You don’t always have to be a playwright.  How many times have we found ourselves upset or confused and our mind starts racing with thoughts from every which way?  Say you’re stuck at your Aunt Celeste’s 90th birthday party, and as the sound of your out of pitch second cousin belting out Frank Sinatra stings your ears, you escape to the world of Facebook on your phone.  Things go further downhill as you see your friends out together, seemingly having the time of their lives…  Ugh!  Why can’t you be there too?  You start to think about all the new inside jokes and memories they are sharing and getting closer, while you are being tortured by family members wondering why you aren’t married yet.  The dramatics start in your head and you start to think your friends will forget to invite you out going forward.  You’ll be doomed to spend every Friday night from here on out alone…  That’s just a classic example of getting caught up in a story.  We have a tendency to make assumptions and get so fixated in what we believe to be true as oppose to what really is.  The friends you were worried about could really be having a mediocre time, missing your presence, or looking at someone’s status and wishing they were there.  So here’s the thing, when we entertain these stories in our mind, it stops us from being real and instead are living in a false reality.  When you notice you are concocting theories, take a step back and ask yourself how true your thoughts really are.  If you find they’re far-fetched,  drop the story-line and bring your attention to the present.  Remember, the more fun experiences in life are often the ones we don’t expect as oppose to the ones we try to predict.
  2. Get your Yogi on.  Ok, I’m not suggesting you dress yourself in robes and go sit in a cave for a month.  I’m encouraging the idea of learning simple meditation.  Meditation doesn’t have to be like you see on-screen with candles and chanting (though by all means, certainly go ahead if you dig that).  It can be just taking ten minutes out of your day to simply sit and allow yourself the luxury of not having to think.  I remember the first time I took to the cushion and I felt my mind and body synchronize.  I had never actually felt them united in that way and it was a true moment of being present.  Find a quiet spot, turn off your phone and relax into a solid position.  Close your eyes and just focus on your breathing and the way that it feels as it enters in and out of your body.  When the thought party starts to arrive, simply notice it and turn your attention back to your breath.  Naturally, it’s easier said than done, the mind panics when it notices you are sending away its thoughtful guests!  That’s where consistency is key.  To learn more, check out a local Zen or Shambhala center that offers introductory programs.
  3. Channel your inner-Rocky.  You don’t need to pound out slabs of meat to stay present, but you can exercise.  How good do you feel after a really heart pumping workout?  It’s awesome and I’m sure you aren’t focused on certain annoyances or the future.  Find an activity or class that you feel excited about.  It’s a great time to do something positive and not have to have any kind of agenda.
  4. Eat mindfully rather than mindlessly.  You just got home from a shit-tastic day at work and all the irritating moments are ruminating in your brain.  Before you know it, you look down to find you’ve unwrapped and eaten almost a whole bag of Hershey kisses.  You never even took the time to stop and taste it!  Food is a great tool for your ‘in the moment’ utility belt.  You can allow yourself to let your thoughts fade and just take delight in what you are eating.  As an alternate to the whole bag of kisses, you could take out just three and put the rest away.  Take your time removing the wrapper and let the chocolate just melt in your mouth, without any sense of urgency.  You’ll find that you are in the now and more satisfied.
  5. Get frisky.  One of the more fun present moment opportunities to take pleasure in can be in-between the sheets with your partner.  I’ll admit it, there have been times where my mind has drifted during sex and it’s been a total buzz kill.  Your companion feels less confident and you’re missing out on an opportunity to truly feel uninhibited and connected to another person.  So instead of laying there trying to calculate your calorie intake for the day or wondering how much you’ll burn from the session (which frankly won’t be much if the other person is doing all the work!), change your position and the whole dynamic will transform.  Be prepared for an explosive finale.
  6. Say hello!  How many times have you tried to avoid conversation?  Ever see someone you know on the street and turn coyly to dodge having to speak to them?  It could’ve even been someone we liked but were too caught up in our own circumstances to take the time.  Conversing with others, whether acquaintance or stranger is pretty vital to our existence as a society.  It’s been hardwired in our brains, so when we avoid chatting, we are also escaping living now.  It doesn’t have to be extensive or time consuming.  Just a hello to a coworker in the hallway or asking how your cashier’s day is going.  You never know what might happen!  A friend of mine struck up a conversation with a barista at Starbucks and they’re now married.  Just be open to the possibility.
  7. Praise YOU.  One of the strongest ways to be present is to give yourself daily accolades.  Being kind and befriending your own self can go a long way.  You can start small, like acknowledging how well you accessorized your outfit or stayed within your budget for the week.  Or go big and prance in front of the mirror saying how fabulous you are.  It’s really all about reminding yourself of the things you are doing right, and in turn building a stronger level of self-confidence.  You’ll be radiating positive in the moment presence without even realizing it!

Of course there are countless other ways to be present and this is just a sampling of how every day routines can be turned into more enjoyable and fulfilling experiences.  Have another way to be more present you’d like to share?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

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*Shout out to Rebecca Steele from iPEC!!

What’s in a name??

:: drumroll please…:: 

Welcome to the New You City Coaching Blog!!  I’m Danielle Mercurio and I am SO excited to see you here.

So, what’s this “New You City” concept all about anyway?  You may have heard of life coaching, but either don’t have all the facts or think of it as this ‘woo woo’ type of field.  Essentially, it’s an amazing new platform for individuals to step up and find clarity, solve problems, and figure out how to live the life that they had once dreamed of.  We’ve all had dreams or stories of what life would be like when we grew up one day.  So… are you are living out those inspirations now?  Or were they squashed along the way and deemed as ridiculous or impractical?  Or maybe you were given new ideas to implement, ones that weren’t your own but a guaranteed move to “play it safe”?  Let’s ponder on that a moment…

Okay, back to this notion of coaching.  It’s a growing field and trending more and more, especially in major cities and among celebrities.  Every coach has their own approach and style, and I can only attest to what I do.  And that’s being a source of service for YOU.  My goal is to inspire you to become the confident, capable and genuine self that I just KNOW is waiting to come out!

Isn’t it just like therapy you say?  I know I’m not crazy… That’s right, you aren’t crazy!  And coaching is a different experience than therapy.  It’s about taking what isn’t working for you in the present moment, pulling it apart and then re-piecing it together so you can move forward.  Have you ever had that moment where you are swiping your subway metrocard and instead of going ahead, you get hit with the hard steel bar of the turnstile?  You turn to find that the card balance is empty and watch as everyone else moves through the barriers effortlessly.  You search in your bag and realize you left your money on the kitchen table.  Ugh!  Basically, you’re stuck.  You know you need to go uptown, but you have no time to spare and don’t have the resources to do it.  That’s where I swoop in to assist!  No matter the issue, I work with you to find tactics and solutions to get you from being stuck to where you want to go.  By staying on YOUR agenda and holding YOU accountable, together we find a way to continue on your path.

I know it’s a crazy, overstimulated world out there and you’re just trying to do the best you can.  It can be hard when you see your friends and family forge ahead in their careers, find love or buy a home, and you feel like you can’t even pay your cell phone bill on time.  With social media all around us, it’s easy to get caught up in assumptions and feel like we aren’t measuring up.  Know that those are just constricting beliefs, and that you can live your life not only the way you want to, but are meant to.

Again, why me?  Why am I qualified to help you? Because I have SO been there before.  I stood back and watched the world seemingly evolve and thrive, while I felt paralyzed by my lack of not knowing what my next steps should be.  I felt that I had to go about life in a certain way and I would be letting others down if I didn’t proceed in the fashion that was indicated as “best” for me.  The more I tried to please others, the more I felt lost and unhappy.  I feared letting anyone know my problems and put on a good front instead.  I was constantly looking for validation and approval, so much so that I was dependent on it.  I wanted something magical to happen and to wake up and be like everyone else.  I was always second guessing and constantly beating myself up for my lack of know how.  I stopped taking care of myself.  I had regular threesomes with Ben & Jerry, bought far too many shoes, and didn’t understand the concept of re-corking a bottle of wine.  All these outer things were just to try to create an escape from my reality.  I longed to live the life that everyone else was, though I didn’t even have a clear understanding of what that meant.  It wasn’t until certain circumstances came in to play that made me realize I had to make a change.  I had to learn how to become my own ally or I would slowly lose sight of everything.

In time, with much trial & error, gentle discipline and kindness, my true self started to show.  I could rely on myself for once!  I was in charge, running the show!  It was effing awesome.  I felt incredibly empowered and it built my confidence in ways I didn’t know existed.  I found my purpose, I have goals and I am more equipped to face challenges.  I’ve attracted people and situations into my life that I’m more than grateful for.  I now live life on my terms and that’s what I want for you too.  I’ll show you the strategies that it took for me to discover my independent and authentic self.   Things do not have to be hard and I believe that you deserve to be happy.

Now, isn’t it time to get over what you “should” be doing and start creating your own desires?  How much longer to do you want to keep going through the motions, day by day, week after week?

You can be anything you want to be, I promise you.  You have everything you need and my role is to support you and be there when you discover it.  Now is the time to do so!

Post your comments below and sign up to receive updates.  I’ll be providing a multitude of tips and new approaches every week for your benefit!  Again, I am so happy you are here and I cannot wait to hear from you!

There are definitely some fun times ahead here at New You City Coaching and for you as well!  Let’s start turning those dreams into reality.