April 8, 2011 at 1:19 PM | Posted in Daily Inspiration, Fitness, Food, God, Health, Inspiration, Relationships | 38 Comments
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Oh, the art of listening…after all, we have been given two ears instead of one, right?  It’s so that we can listen more intently to everything and everyone in our lives!

Imagine having just one ear.  Not only is that freaky but our listening skills would probably suffer more than they already do.

This can be either about listening to God’s call to us every morning as we wake up, or it can be listening to our bodies when they tell us to eat, sleep, and work out.

Listening closely is most indefinitely essential when it comes to our loved ones, or perhaps strangers that need a listenin’ ear for that day.

Today, I’m learning about listening in all these ways–I hope you will too! 😉 Well actually, I think God has been teaching me to listen more closely in every area in life.  So that’s always good!

Thank you so much for all your prayers and sweet wishes in regards to my sickness!  I went to the doc and apparently I’ve been fighting off the stomach flu.  Today I should be completely fine.  I’m fine enough to work out.


There’s always that however isn’t there? 😛  I’m listening to my body!!

After sustaining my 5’1″ self for almost a whole week with porridge and soup (which I happen to love by the way)

I knew late last night and this morning that I had finally gained back my appetite, and I could actually stomach some overnight oats!!!!

So Black Cherry Almond VOO it was. It really hit the spot!

(All inspired by the awesome Angela and Thrifty’s Black Cherry ice cream)

  • smashed half banana
  • 1/2 TBSP chia
  • 1/3 C oats
  • frozen cherries chopped
  • 1 C almond milk+1/4 C water
  • 1/8 tsp almond extract <– I think this goes so well with cherries don’t ya agree?!
  • topped with homemade granola <– finally crunchy food hooray!
  • chocolate chips and PB

I dare you to try this combo!!  I did expect a stronger almond flavor, so next time I would add 1/4 tsp instead of 1/8.

Then I was certain that today would be my first workout of this week, but as the hours went by, I realized that I wouldn’t be listening to my body if I did that.

Although I’m feeling fine, somehow I duped myself into thinking that I would crank out the strongest workout ever that even ROCKY would approve. (Any Rocky lovers out there?)

As I sit here typing away, I’m realizing that my body needs to take it easy today as I have a whole slew of assignments to complete and not to mention, I just need to recover 100% once and for all!  The typical me would never do that.

You see, as my blog’s name says it–we should strive to be fit in our souls AND in our bodies and minds. I can’t emphasize enough that spiritual, mental, and physiological health are highly intertwined.

Thus, I am striving to listen up and let my body rest for today and perhaps start working out tomorrow.  You see, this wasn’t always easy for me.  Actually, even until last month I’d just work out even if I had the mother of all colds! I just love working out, but what good is it if I’m not being efficient because of it and then I get sick from it? There you have it.  I’ll practice what I preach. 😀

In addition to all that, I want to listen up to my surroundings and to what God has to say to me.  It’s so crazy! This morning I woke up saying, “Lord, in what ways can I be a better friend to others? I want to be a GREAT friend before expecting others to be GREAT friends to me.”

Then, I saw this devotional in my email.

Friendship in the Pit

April 8th, 2011 by Os Hillman

“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” – Proverbs 17:17

“I am in there again,” I told my friend. “The pit.” A time when no one can cheer you up and you wonder if there ever was or is a God. Have you ever had such times? Discouragement can be devastating even to the best of saints. It can bring us so low. The writer of Proverbs phrased it well when he said, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick” (Prov. 13:12). When we get so low that we despair of our belief, we can identify with the prophet Elijah who wanted to die after being so discouraged with life.

“I’m coming over,” my friend said.

“Aw, you don’t have to do that,” I said.

“I’m coming over. We’re going to pray.”

About 30 minutes later my friend walked in the door. We sat in living room and my friend began to pray. I didn’t feel like praying. I was too deep in the pit. All I could do was listen. After awhile my friend was quiet. We both sat quietly for ten to fifteen minutes, praying quietly to ourselves. Suddenly my friend said, “First Thessalonians 5:24!”

“What verse is that?” I asked.

“I don’t know,” she said. “That is the verse He spoke to me.”

I grabbed my Bible and looked up the verse. “The one who calls you is faithful and He will do it.”

We laughed. Can He be so personal? Can He care that much? That night I grew more in my love of my two friends, not to mention being brought out of the pit.

Do you have a friend who is there when you need somebody at any hour of the day? Are you there for your friend? Ask the Lord how you can be a better friend to someone today.

Crazy timing.  Awesome.

I truly believe that our words, smiles, and encouragements hold the power to kill or give life!! I know that sounds dramatic, but please hear me out.

I mean, how much more joy would it bring to someone working behind the Walmart register or at the local gas station if we didn’t just have the attitude of,  “just give me what I need and let me out of here?” But instead, how life changing could it be to simply smile at them and GENUINELY ask them how their day is going?  Quite a difference, I say!

Not only does this heal their souls, but it heals ours as well.

Then as our souls are healed little by little, our minds and our bodies will follow.

It’s all related I tell ya! 🙂

So why not strive to listen to our bodies, to our loved ones, and to our surroundings today? No, make that everyday.  We may fail and get discouraged when that doesn’t go the way we expect it to.  But I challenge us to do it!  It didn’t go quite well today?  Well, let’s pick up where we left off!

And of course, I don’t mean a fake “hi, how are you?” but a genuine one.  I always say to myself, “if you don’t really want to know how they are, then don’t ask.”  😀

By the way…have I mentioned how amazing you guys are?! I am so grateful and appreciative of y’all that I can hardly stand it! I hope you know that you also make my day. 😉

And I would like to say congrats to Katie and all the amazing bloggers out there who raised over $3000!! I am inspired by the way that Katie listened to her conviction to help Japan in this manner, and now it’s an accomplished goal.  Awesome example!

In what ways do you think that you have to listen up more?

Do you usually listen to your body? How do you, or how do you not? I really don’t listen when it comes to working out 😛


Ellie <33


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  1. awww you r so sweet!!!

  2. I learned to listen to my body when I was chronically ill. It was very depressing and boring, but I had to let myself heal. Now that I’m finally healed, it’s amazing to be back out there!

    As far as listening to others, I try but could always do better.

    • that’s amazing girl! thanks for sharing that. I know that you’re the strong person you are now because of it. Amazing how we can see how AMAZING it is to be back out there once we go through something. 🙂 so glad you’re well now!

  3. Definitely listen to my body. When it’s exhausted rest. When I feel sluggish, get up and move. Love the post!

    • Great balance Alexa!

  4. I definitely listen to my body when I need to rest, but I could do a lot better at listening when it comes to other things for sure!! What a great post with a lot of great reminders, Ellie!

    I love adding frozen cherries to my overnight oats! Glad you’re feeling better and got your appetite back!! 🙂

    • so good to see you around again Amanda yay! 😛 that’s great~good job on resting when you need to! I have a long way to go lol.

  5. Beautiful post. 🙂

    It’s definitely the times when we don’t feel like listening to God, our friends, or our body that we need to listen up the most! Being married I have learned to listen to my husband a lot more and not be so quick to interrupt and get defensive.

    • Niiiice keep strong in that Meg–sounds like you’re doing rather well in communicating with your hus

  6. I think I have a hard time between listening to my body when it comes to rest days vs. just lazy days lol. I am always good for workouts 4-5 days a week and that is generally what works well for me and my body. Not all too often do I need extra rest days since I usually have them every other day or so!

  7. God’s so great! 🙂 I’m happy that you’re feeling better. The stomach flu is no fun at all!

    Haha, I agree. It’s hard to know when my body needs to work out. But I know that I need a rest day when my sluggishness is combined with a headache or something like that.

  8. I’m sorry, I’m still stuck on imagining I have one ear… 😛

    I LOVE putting almond extract in my oatmeal and smoothies! It’s so delicious. And I’m so glad you’re feeling better!

    • gracias Hannah!

  9. amen. love the art of listening.. and the discipline of prayer!! 🙂 oh yes, vegan overnight oats – my favorite breakfast!!! what kinds of exercises do you do btw? i am 5’1 too, and i found myself bulking up from running and doing HIIT, so now i just swim/yoga/pilates. trying to find ways to lean myself out rather thank bulk up!! hope you are feeling better soon!

    • Hey Junia! amen to all that! And for workouts, I’ll probably try to post some stuff up soon. But the kind of HIIT I do is composed of bodyweight and some weights. EX:pushups, pullups, bicyle, explosive squats/lunges, core work, and so forth. But I believe that if you feel like you’re bulking and you don’t want that, then it must be in your diet. I’m sure you eat rather healthy and all! 🙂 But eating portions where it’s JUST enough and not making us super full is very important. again, it’s listening to our bodies! unless we’re raw foodists or something, no matter how healthy we eat, if we don’t break it up in good portion sizes and don’t “feed” our muscles to bulk up, then we won’t. I’m no expert but just what I’ve learned over the years? 😀 hope this helps!

  10. I love the idea of putting almond extract in oatmeal. Especially if there’s cherries involved. 🙂
    I really try to listen to my body as much as possible but sometimes, I have to admit, I don’t do the best job. Especially when it comes to rest days when working out- I love my cardio. But I have been getting a lot better!

    • I feel ya haha! But in a way I guess it’s better than not wanting to move at all? that’s a bright side~~! 😉

  11. Listening is so important and I’m glad you brought up tons of different ways to our bodies, minds, family, friends. 🙂 I’m glad you’re getting back to your eating ways. Hope you feel 100% better soon!

    • thank you so much sophia!! I do feel 100% now hallelujah 😀

  12. What a gorgeous post Ellie. So happy that you’re feeling better, nothing like a little R&R to get you back on your feet. Loving the oats 🙂

    And yes it’s not only about being physically fit but feeling fitness in the soul. Love it 😀

  13. Mmmm…overnight oats are the best. These look incredible, I will have to give them a try! 🙂

  14. listening can be so hard… lately I’ve felt liek I’m in a bit of a fog and having SO much trouble listening to my own feelings! It’s also funny because I’m known for talking a lot but I really LOVE to listen to people talk, especially about stuff they’re passionate about 🙂

    those oats look amazing, Ir eally need to get on the overnight oats bandwagon!

    • *gasp* oh get on the wagon now! 😛 aww don’t be hard on yourself though! I’m sure everything will clear up and get better as you learn the “art” of being more in tune with your heart/mind 🙂 we’re all learning and failing so it’s alll goooood

  15. Such a relevant post for all of us! Thanks for sharing.

  16. hi Ellie, I’m glad to know that you’re feeling better now but still be gentle to your body, it needs time to fully recover 🙂

    • aww thanks for the sweet words Coco! ❤

  17. Isnt it amazing how God gaves us 2 ears and 1 mouth yet we tend to be quick to speak and SLOW to listen? God knew what He was doing when He created us! Listening is one thing I think EVERYONE could do better at.
    Give your body rest girl so that you can recover!!

    • amen, He so KNEW! and still KNOWS 🙂

  18. hey, thanks for stopping by! glad you’re feeling better + love your dedication to holistic health (esp the spiritual, as that’s been such a priority in me recovering from my disordered eating)
    be well 🙂

    • I’m so glad to hear that it’s been your priority~it’s so important and a must! 😀

  19. BEAUTIFUL!!!! wow. so true about listening. God needs us to slowwwww sometimes and be still. AHHHH listen to your body love!!!! it will thank you 🙂

  20. I hear you on the idea that more listening needs to happen; I’m in a Communications class and we’ve been discussing this lately. People need to be more mindful listeners. I love this post. It reminds me of my dad; he is such a charmer and I notice he always leaves people (like cashiers, etc) smiling so now I try to do that as well, like he does, by looking people in the eye and asking how are they and such.

    Thanks for the comment on my mom’s bday!

    P.S. You and I are the same height lol.

    • Your dad sounds like such a cool guy~I like that phrase–“mindful listening”. great saying!

  21. Hey dear.. I’m glad you are better and it’s nothing serious… =) And I will have porridge for lunch today. haha.. =p

    Listening is always tough but is something to learn! =D

  22. […] Regardless of all that, I’d like to show you the amazing nutrition in this breakfast pre-topping!  Just because I know that calories are still important to some extent, and some of you may want to know the protein statistics. I think it all depends on when and why we should think about calories.  Moderation in thinking about calories is important too–I just think we shouldn’t overdo it.  I believe it ultimately comes down to listening to our bodies. […]

  23. That devotional story about friendship was just perfect. I love my friends, of course, but I am often convicted about my lack of reaching out and doing special things for them. Thanks so much for sharing and reminding us of how powerfully God can use us in each other’s lives! I hope you’re feeling much better and treating yourself well!

    • aww thanks for sharing that Rebecca! yes it’s true. Who are WE that the Lord would want to save and use to bless others?! that’s why He’s so gracious….<3

  24. […] at the moment, I’m going to do a simple workout for 7 minutes.  Again, so important to listen to our bodies as long as our other priorities are […]

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