Strategic Inspired Healing

Empowering Transformations for Healthier Homes and Families

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Lessons from my Dirt Therapy Session

I just went outside for some of what I like to call “dirt therapy”. I get to put my hands in some dirt, connect to my Earth, appreciate my flowers, listen to the birds sing, feel the warmth of the sun, and get out all the frustrations from every other annoyance that I have endured this week by beating the crap out of something with a hoe.

I was just wrestling with a rose bush, and Poison was right, every rose does have its thorn. I remember seeing the tiny little rose bush starting to come up in the garden and thinking that roses are beautiful and it would be nice to have some there. But then I turned around for a moment and it had grown across the garden and up the tree. I needed to clip out huge sections with quite a bit of effort and pain. It kind of reminded me of parenting, and home ownership, and healing. So, the perfect reflection for a Sustainable Solutions for Healthy Homes blog.


In parenting, we need to constantly be thinking ten steps ahead, but also thinking of all the possible paths and implications of each of those, so more like a complicated multi-tasking matrix or flow chart or concept map that is constantly running in the background of every little decision. But, most of us learned the hard way that if you think an issue is cute like a baby rose bush, when you come back to it, you find that it has grown unmanageable. I recently noticed this about the bedtime schedule, which on one busy day with late activities, I let them stay up 15 minutes past bedtime, which then grew to half an hour. Then one day when I was really exhausted and had finally sat down for a moment, I didn’t feel like getting up to do the toothbrush battle, and it became a full hour later which has now somehow become their new bedtime and if I even suggest the previously routine bedtime I am clearly the meanest mom ever.

In home-ownership, any real estate agent or home inspector will tell you that water is the biggest enemy of any building. If you don’t notice a leak or water damage or mold when it is small and manageable it will grow and become a huge problem. There are many routine maintenance projects that you can do that are quick and affordable and easy. But if you get busy, with something like parenting, you can get behind without even noticing. And then one day when you find that you have slept for more than 4 hours and you look at your house with clearer eyes, you realize that the small project has now become a big, scary, expensive project.

In our physical health and healing, we need to listen to what our body is trying to tell us when the symptoms are small and whispering at us. If we wait, then the symptoms get bigger and louder until we pay attention. They are kind of like toddlers saying “mommy, mommy, mommy” in that way. They start off quiet and cute and grow into screaming monsters. They call for attention in little ways, like “hey, it hurts when I bend like that”…but you ignore it and keep going, because there is too much to do. Then you find that you are putting some muscle cream on it, maybe taking a pain killer, and then all of a sudden it screams “no more” and you are stuck in bed for two weeks.

So I try to learn from my mistakes, and this year I went out and tackled the little baby weeds when they are cute and little and easy to pull out of the garden beds. I got the whole garden done quickly, and I did it early enough in the season that it is not oppressively hot yet. I am going to catch up on my home improvement and maintenance projects. I am going to come up with a really awesome new bedtime routine. I am going to listen to my body and hydrate and rest as needed.  I have high hopes that I will keep being smart and proactive.

Okay, full disclosure, I am feeling really great about all this because I have a few extra hours this week because a class that I teach at the community college ended for the semester. I am sure that this amazing feeling will last at least until the kids are out of school for the summer. Then all bets are off. Oh wait, did you say concerts and field days and end-of-year picnics? Oh, no. Never mind.



If you are looking for some proactive tips and tricks for your family, your home, or your health, join me for a class or call me for a private consultation.








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She Sells Healthy Home Consultations

cropped-sshhlogo.pngSometimes thinking about health and the environment can be overwhelming, so it is EMPOWERING to know that your home and how you live in it involve choices that you can control. But sometimes, you don’t know where to start or where to get the most bang for your buck. And when you are so busy just keeping up with your routine, it can be a real pain to have something that is not working right and needs to be replaced. Or when members of your family are not feeling well and nobody has an answer.  But before you make a big purchase or a significant change to your lifestyle, make sure that you consider all of your options.

The problem today is that we almost have too much information and too many choices. In the past, a salesperson’s job would be to have all of the relevant information about their product and be able to help you to make a decision about the product. Today’s consumers have access to so much information and can comparison shop and are not limited geographically to only the local stores. But a new role is needed to help the consumers to weed through all the information and uncover their real needs and find the best solution.

There is a great example in the book To Sell is Human by Daniel H. Pink in which he describes a sales situation in which someone comes in to buy a vacuum. A good salesperson will show them the best options that they have in their budget. But a great salesperson will find out more about their underlying needs. If you ask more questions, you may find out that what is driving them to search for a new vacuum is that they are finding that they are needing to vacuum more and more and their floors still do not seem clean. It could be that their vacuum is fine, and they just need to replace a belt or clean a filter.

But there may also be a number of other things that are leading to this situation, other than that their vacuum is losing power. It could be that they need to adjust the humidity in their house, or fix the seals on their doors or windows, or place show mats by the doors, or replace their carpet.

As a healthy homes consultant, I don’t need to make a commission on the sale of the vacuum (or the windows or carpet), so I have a more objective view of the bigger picture. I help my clients to identify the root cause of their problem, identify possible solutions and help them to make the best choice for their home and their family. Working with their budget and their timeline, I help them to decipher what needs to be done first and what can wait until later.


In this example it is just about replacing a vacuum. But often we are faced with bigger decisions, or a larger investment. I am usually called in when either the financial investment is larger, or the cost to your family’s health is significant. I am often called when families are looking to renovate or deciding whether or not they need to move to another house. I am also called by families who want suggestions for how to make their home healthier because they are at an important time of transition of their lives.

 Sometimes it is a change to their family like planning for a new baby or an elderly parent is moving in. Other times it is due to a diagnosis like asthma or allergy, chemical sensitivity or various cancers. In those cases, their care provider may suggest that they remove any toxins from their home, especially airborne toxins. This includes any products that you bring into your home like cleaning supplies and home finishes (flooring, wall coverings) and furnishings (window treatments, furniture).

Whether you are looking for someone to: 

  • Help you decide whether it is time for a lifestyle change, a renovation, or moving to a new home
  • Help you take your vision and turn it into a plan and break it down into action steps
  • Help you identify ways in which you make your home more Healthy

michelle bamboo Contact me for a free 15 minute phone call to see if a Healthy Home Consultation is the right solution for you and your family.


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At the Intersection of Science and Spirituality


I am often asked how I get so much done every day. And although I do like multi-tasking and good project-management, the trick is to do it all with joy and not get burned out in the process. I balance a lot of things, but I still have plenty of time to sing with my kids, smell the roses and even to read books and watch movies!

I have studied the Science of Health and Happiness for over twenty years and I have recently completed a two year mastery program in strategic quantum healing, but I often say that my best marketing is just to look at my kids. My kids are generally happy and healthy, so I must have figured something out.

science and spirituality.png

I incorporate the works of spiritual teachings from a variety of sources (both ancient and modern) in with cutting-edge science and share with you how I have learned to incorporate this into the demands of a full and busy life with work and family and I want to share the secret to how I did all of this with you in my new program: Inspired Healing at Home.

I had to learn the hard way that the key is not in reading another book or finding another doctor, but in learning to see health in an entirely different way and then actually implementing the changes into my everyday life. There were a lot of barriers in my own way of thinking about the world that were keeping me from really trying these techniques.

So for me, the process took the courage to heal and to change on more levels than I ever expected. But I just couldn’t be the kind of mom that I wanted to be when I was in pain every day, so I needed to make some big changes in my life.

I am also living proof that you can heal from chronic diseases, auto-immune diseases, and all of those pains that you thought you would just have to live with. For twenty years I was in pain every day, and now I am not. I no longer suffer from chronic back, hip and knee pain, asthma/allergy, Digestive disorders, Migraines, and depression. This dramatic change to my life is what has given me the energy to get so many things done. And the money that I save on doctor’s appointments and medications can all go right into that vacation fund or can be used to buy even better food or improve my home.

I was only able to do that level of healing for myself by working with an amazing group of women that offered me support, encouragement, and accountability. So I have developed my new program to cover the important things that I want to share with you, but in a format that will hold you and support you while you grow into these changes.


So, if you are done with being in pain, being exhausted, being unfulfilled, being unappreciated, and you are just done with feeling stuck, contact me to talk about how to get started on your healing journey.


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Why you can’t buy a Healthy Home

cropped-sshhlogo.pngThere are at least 445 quotes about “Doing the Right Thing”. I just checked. But the real problem is the number of times a day that I have to make huge decisions. It makes me long for a simpler time. But then I remember that in many of those “simpler” times, people were starving or working themselves to death or scared all the time, and I try to be thankful for living in a warm house, in a safe community, with dinner on the table and a hot shower. But seriously, every day I am not sure if I am actually doing any of those things the “right way”. When you become a mom, this responsibility takes on a whole new meaning. Now you are making decisions for other people, and you never know which one of those decisions will come up again later in their therapy.

right-238370_960_720I feel like there must be something to this desire though. It must be human nature to want to do things the “right way”. I loved being a good student in school. I would follow the rules and study the material and get the right answers. I love playing board games and figuring out the strategy so that you can win. But somehow, in real adult-life, there does not seem to be an agreed upon set of rules or a strategy. We try to make the best choices that we can, in the moment, given the knowledge and resources that we have available. But then we are sure to have someone tell us that we did it wrong after all.


There are plenty of solutions being marketed to us that promise that if we buy their product, use their system, or take their pill, then we will be happy or healthy or successful. We’d love to believe it and sometimes we try one of the products or systems or pills just to check if maybe this is the one. But, somehow we know that tomorrow we will see another advertisement for the next, even better thing. And we know that none of them will actually do it for us.

In our deepest knowing, we realize that health and happiness are not things that you can buy. You cannot buy a better body or buy a healthy home. Those are just reflections of your current state of health. There is not a one-size-fits all solution. There is not one perfect house that you can buy that will be a healthy home. Even if you bought a house that was made out of all natural materials in a beautiful setting by local artisans it would not be healthy until it was a home that was lived in and filled with love and was cared for and maintained. A home is where you feel comfortable, and safe, and free to be yourself. And what that looks like will be different for each family.


I just looked up another checklist of things to do for a healthy home. But just looking at the list was stressing me out (and I have studied this stuff for years!). I remember going to a seminar once about pests in the home. They had lots of info about what to do to eliminate them safely and without adding toxins, but why you need to do it because they can carry disease and destroy your property. But what I remember most if that they also had slides talking about the psychological effects on the homeowners who are having a pest problem in their home. I have been to countless seminars since then, on all sorts of healthy home topics, but I wish that they all included the physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual aspects of each issue.

This is why I offer customized solutions for the families that I help. I don’t have one answer that fits every family or every home. I work with them to find something that is achievable in their reality, and that works for their lifestyle and their budget. I help them to identify action steps that they can try right now that will start to make a difference in their lives. I help them to prioritize which things to do first and where they can save their time and energy. Sometimes it is just nice to have someone to discuss these things while we are trying to make those million choices a day. I know that when I have to make a big decision, I appreciate having mentors and professionals to call for advice. Even if they don’t have one right answer for me, they usually help me to narrow the list.

If you are looking for some help with choosing healthier options for your home, call me for a customized, holistic consultation that takes into account the physical, emotional, psychological, and financial needs of your family. 



Tuning in to the Muscle of your Soul with Therapeutic Yoga

cropped-sshhlogo.pngI’ve been doing yoga since college, and I’ve tried various techniques, mostly because of what classes were available and fit into my schedule. When the babies were small I took an evening class because I needed to get out of the house and see adults and I desperately needed some quiet relaxation. After my surgery I took a gentle yoga class and I was the only one there that wasn’t a senior citizen, but they could all move more easily than I could and I gently taught my muscles to move again.

Recently I’ve been using exercise videos, which are great because they allow me to stretch and greet the day without leaving my house, which works since I then have to get everyone up and out the door. But when they say on the video that I am invited to go deep within myself and let go of the distractions of the day, I kind of chuckle to myself because I know that it doesn’t always work out like that with a house full of kids.


yoga mat

A few weeks ago, I was invited by a woman that I met at the integrative practitioners networking group to drop in for a class at her studio. I didn’t even realize that it was a “therapeutic” yoga practice, but I do love amazing moments of synchronicity, so I will take it as a sign that I was in the right place at the right time. As soon as we started, the teacher said that we were going to do a whole series for the psoas. My ears perked up immediately because there has been a lot of talk about the psoas in the doula community. Read more about the psoas and pregnancy HERE.

“The psoas is an important, yet often unknown, muscle that plays a vital role in physical health and mental wellbeing.”

psoas“The psoas is the only muscle in your body that connects your spine to your legs. That means if the psoas is tight, then it will have a direct effect on your hips, shoulders, spine, neck, legs and even down to your feet.”

“On the emotional level, the psoas is intimately tied into your sense of safety and well-being. When we are stressed, or experience any form of physical or emotional trauma from childhood or recently, your psoas will hold those emotions and feelings. Our body carries these experiences whether we are aware of it or not and if ignored for too long, they will show up as aches, pains, injuries or illness.” Read More HERE.


I have been supporting moms who have experienced birth trauma, and having also gone through this journey myself and knowing that there is always deeper healing that can be done, I was happy to have this time to give some love and attention to my own psoas muscles.

And we also had the opportunity to talk about more workshops that we can do to support new moms who are recovering physically, emotionally, and spiritually from the birth process and while adjusting to mothering a newborn. I have my Unpacking from the Journey class at the FLC for mom’s to heal their birth stories and I have a 6 month program for women who want to learn how to incorporate healing practices into their life, but I love the idea of a class in a yoga studio where we can also incorporate movement and even more body awareness into our practice.

yoga meditation

I’ve talked before about how there is no App that you can buy that will make you healthy. You need to tune in to your own body and listen to what it has to say (and some of us have to learn the hard way to start to listen when it is whispering to us gently that is needs attention, not screaming in pain). You also need to find ways to quiet your mind so that you can have the opportunity to learn to tap into your inner knowing.

In our modern world of running around and doing so much, it is important to carve out little bits of time for this throughout our day and learn to fit it in to our routine. I meditate while I do dishes and while I drive my minivan and while I prepare sandwiches. But, it is such a treat to really let myself go deeper and truly dive in and ask my body and my spirit what it needs.

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Never too busy for amazing opportunities: How Trying New Things is an important skill

cropped-sshhlogo.pngI started another new job this week. It’s just another class at another school, and I’ve been teaching for so long that my resume is now older than my college students. But anyway, it has me thinking about trying new things. Just this week I was asked to take on another leadership position in the Girl Scouts, and during that phone call we talked about how Trying New Things is one of the biggest skills that we teach and model.  I just got home from a really inspiring meeting with some administrators from the school district and we were brainstorming ways to improve STEM education and Entrepreneurship opportunities for our kids that will let them create sustainable outlets for their innovative ideas through programs like my Business of Science program.

But before I went to the meeting I had to get in my paperwork for the Airband competition at the elementary school. And just for fun, I have been busy with a new volunteer committee working on costumes for the Middle School Musical. And I’m getting ready for my women’s circle tomorrow night and planning for Sunday school, and prepping for the college classes that start next week.


So the word of the week is BUSY. In my role as a mentor in the college internship program, BUSY is one of our swear words, along with Frustrated and Confused. As part of our company culture we work on eliminating the use of those words. But what I see as the problem is not the words themselves, but how they are used. When someone uses one of those words as their entire story, or as an excuse, that is where it is blocking them from accomplishing a task or moving towards their goals. I am busy, but I thrive on it. I get frustrated, but it drives me to make changes. I get confused, but then I ask questions and find solutions. But if you say “I’m busy” as a form of “no” or as an excuse not to start, not to try something new, or not to help in your community, then that is what needs to change.

In all my decades of studying health I have found that the common theme is that stagnation is what causes disease, whether it is in organisms or organizations. To be healthy, things need to flow. If you use your feelings of frustration or confusion as an excuse not to move on, then you are stuck, things will stagnate, and that just sounds smelly.

I was at a networking event and talked about how my business has been in transition, and when I say transition apparently some people hear “lost”… but I am not. I am happy to be transforming because that means that I am moving. I am not stuck or stagnant.  I am in the flow. I can keep growing and changing, making adjustments and small course corrections because I am focused on my vision and moving forward. (We’ll talk more another time about how the science of vision boards really works! Visualization is one of the most powerful mind exercises you can do. Or you can read this for now.)

The key is to define your own success. With the students that I teach, the interns that I mentor and the clients that I help, the common theme that often keeps them from success is not being able to show up, ask questions, and keep trying. Like they say on my workout video at 6 a.m., “Half the battle is planning, the other half is showing up”.

There were a lot of moments this week when I thought about how some people would get stuck because it is intimidating to go into new places, having to start something new, having to jump through more hoops, and deal with a bunch of weird obstacles… but I just asked questions, kept moving, didn’t take it personally and didn’t let it stop me.


Having that call with the Girl Scout service unit and talking about leadership and remembering all of the things that I learned while earning my Gold Award, made it really clear that these are the most important skills to teach our kids. We continue to need these skills in our own lives, in our own learning, in meeting our own challenges, and that is how we model that for our kids and our students, showing them that the work is never done, but that we are always up for the challenge.

Need more inspiration? Read some more stats about Girl Scout Alumni.


So, back to being busy. I have to go finish another hundred things before the bus gets here. And I will probably get frustrated that some other adults use the word busy as an excuse not to volunteer, or to miss the meeting, or to miss out on the opportunity to gather together to celebrate and to try new things. And I’m sometimes confused as to why someone would want to miss out on these amazing opportunities. But, in the meantime, I will keep working on creating more opportunities for people to heal those wounds so that they can just get started.

And if you need some support and inspiration, my beautiful friend started a Facebook community called Do The New based on a challenge that she gave herself to do something new every day. Whether it is a new hairstyle, stopping at a different grocery store, or trying a new recipe for dinner, find those little places where you are stuck, and make little changes until Trying New Things gets easier and easier.

It is not about being someone else, it is about stepping outside your comfort zone and removing those obstacles that are keeping you from being  your full self.

Define your own success.

And then take that first step.

Need help getting started? Ready to remove those blocks? 


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It’s time to make your best investment of the year!

It is easy to get caught in the trap of: “If you want something done right, do it yourself”.  Often this just means that you end up doing everything!

So today I want to talk about outsourcing some of the biggest jobs to the experts. This allows you to feel really good about your management skills, achieving your biggest goals and then getting a good night’s sleep.

I have been working on creating a more healthy family-life by sitting down once a year (when the kids go back to school!) and creating my vision for what really needs to happen, and then finding smart ways to get it all done by delegating and calling on experts.

In project-management they talk about outsourcing work, or delegating tasks. I used to try to do everything myself, from home improvements to car repair, but lately I’ve been trying to let others be the experts about what they love to do, so that I can spend more time on what I love and what I am good at. It’s a win-win.

As a mom, life gets pretty busy, and just feeding the kids every day can be a full time job. You have to earn money to buy the food, then you have to choose the food, shop for the food, organize and inventory the food, prepare and cook the food etc.  And somehow you’re supposed to accomplish all of that faster than they can eat the food! And with the number of foods available on the market today, who has time to research every single product?


But, are we supposed to just trust the stores that slap the “healthy” label on almost anything, even when it clearly is anything but. If we can’t trust the labels, then who do we trust with the health of our kids? I find it is best to ask for advice from other families that have healthy kids. And when it comes to nutrition, I like to talk to the farmers. You can go meet your farmers at the local Farmer’s Market, or even better, you can join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture).

When I decided to let my friends be my farmers I was able to check all of these things off my To-Do list:

  • Feed my kids healthy, organic veggies that are local and in-season

  • Have more time to make home-cooked meals with my kids

  • Spend time outside with my kids for fun and enjoyment of nature

  • Be less stressed and have more joy

  • Make good investments of money (buying up front saves me 10-15% off retail) and time (I don’t have to think about what to put on the menu this week)

I have always had a garden, and I love having my kids get their hands dirty and learn about where food comes from. We love to throw some seeds in the ground and see what happens. But if I am in charge of maintaining and monitoring the garden all summer and relying on it to do well, it becomes kind of stressful and takes some of the fun out of family garden time.

In my vision of healthy kids, I also have kids who know what real vegetables look like, who understand where their food comes from, and who know how to prepare and cook their own food. So, when my friends said that they were passionate about starting a farm with their kids and growing organic vegetables and that they wanted to drop off a beautiful assortment of veggies on my porch every week from June-October, I jumped at the chance.

CSA veggies

Now, every winter, I happily send them a check so that they can go buy the seeds and the fertilizer (using all of their accumulated professional knowledge) and then I can sleep well, knowing that they will get up in the middle of the night to run the heaters in the greenhouse and take care of my baby veggies. They even sing songs to the veggies because we know that happy cells make healthy plants.


So for the best investment that you can make of both your time and your money, I encourage you to search for CSA’s in your community. If you are lucky enough to live in Upstate NY, you can meet my farmers and learn more about how it works at their new store and learn about their farm share program.

johnson family


For more ideas on how to create a healthy home life, check out my classes and or call for a private session.