on used to's.

I used to be depressed. I used to write a lot about it and it was cathartic and made me feel less alone. it helped and you helped. most of the time atleast.

I feel pretty great these days. Anxiety is still a real bear and that’s something I’ve gotten better at coping with over the years.

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Carling Harps
you are not your thoughts.

You are not your thoughts.

I repeat.

You are not your thoughts.

We’ve got billions of neurons, interconnected by trillions of synapses in our brains. Billions. Trillions. That’s what is happening in there. Ordered chaos that somehow produces our thoughts.

We aren’t even truly aware of whats happening, or when its happening, mostly life just seems to happen. Our thoughts simply seem to show up. And often times it feels like they are happening to us, rather than being created by us.

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Carling Harps
on the necessity of action.

I usually find myself most prompted to sit down and write when shits feels like its swirling all around. I think you probably know the feeling. When instead of sifting through it, you're just hoping/wishing/praying for it all to settle but can’t muster the oomph necessary to make it happen yourself. just waiting for things to happen to you. waiting for the storm to pass. stuck in that foggy purgatory of should-but-for-some-reason-can’t.

I suppose I could be succinct and just call it what it is. anxiety. maybe a hair (or two) of depression throughout the years. And even with all the yoga, the meditating, the support (which I’ve been very lucky to have a lot of) it hasn't always felt like I had the tools to really keep my head above water. Why couldn't I get my shit together. Why couldn't I just get my ass out of bed. why. What was different between me and anyone (often it feels like everyone) else?

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Carling Harps
on the great tragedy of alderaan

I mustn't allow myself to get sucked into thinking that it's romantic to be neurotic, that being neurotic means one has to be complicated and somewhat intellectual. Deep. Proud of the fact that you can sink into the depths of despair. A neurotic, complicated, somewhat intellectual, deep gal who's also wacky, zany and madcap. A must at a wake.

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Carling Harps
on body shapes.

Last week, I attempted to buy a swimsuit in Miami only to find my self melting into a potential puddle of carling shaped woes on the dressing room floor.

Transported to the store of Mean Girls glory, "1,3,5" in an instant. You know, that one store and sales person who makes you feel like a leper for even asking for a size large. for something a little larger than my nipple please oh please. how dare you disrupt this establishment with your crazy requests.

because spoiler alert, they don't have any in store. and the dressing rooms are the kind made from nightmares that have the mirrors on the outside, ON THE OUTSIDE. because at this point, of course they do.

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Carling Harps
on the city of angels.

Los Angeles is an odd place.

Less Tim Burton odd, and more Being John Malkovich odd.

I'm never quite sure if I love or hate it there. Or if I'm talking myself into loving or hating it there. But after our most recent trip, I've been teetering over the love line even to my own surprise.

Let start with the fact that jackets aren't required, and neither are pants most days so that’s generally a win. The houses are bright and airy spanish bungalows rather than the big, dark, clunky craftsmans of the Northwest.  Warm days are punctuated with magical snapchat-able sunsets made of palm trees and pollution. 

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Carling Harps
on revelations and ratios.

There's a thing that happens when you try to quiet your mind. Sometimes that thing is that it totally works.  you get that wobbly eerie haze of relaxation and you vow to meditate every day in attempts to recreate that little scrap of bliss.

But most of the time, it’s a little less rose colored, and a lot more random. I'm settling in. I'm breathing. I'm lulling a mantra to and fro and definitely, *definitely* not holding onto any dreaded expectations for this meditation.

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Carling Harps
on conciousness altering experiences.

Life's usually a big ole smattering of chaos. some of it beautiful, some of it tragic. lots somewhere lost in between. uncategorizable. without category or definitive emotion. a smattering.


but sometimes, some small-itty-bitty times, it's quiet. and it's magical. and you wish you could slip it in your pocket before anyone notices. steal it away. maintain that altered consciousness forever.


but that's the thing. it's altered.

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Carling Harps
on delusion.

I'm sure I'm dating myself with this Windows98 MSword paper clip help pop up imagery but it feels depressingly relevant.


It's tempting to toss up a few words of Internet empathy in the midst of the horror. Feeling heartbroken and lost makes sense, every single person should feel heartbroken right now. But we should also feel angry. anger is not bad, it is not wrong. sometimes it's quite productive. We should be outraged & storming the damn gates.

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Carling Harps
on being an effective multitasker.

effective multitasker.

That's what my resume used to say. I was efficient with my time and could juggle many responsibilities, wear the many coveted hats. I prided myself on it, what a good little worker I was. Hey Carling, can you take over this extra customer, it will just be for a short period of time, we promise.  of course I can! do you have any more you need taken off of your plate? because my plate is certainly just as full but I do yoga so I’m great at balance and you can totally just keep piling things up just a wee bit higher.

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Carling Harps
on demanding euphoria

I think that I probably demand a lot of things. I suppose we all do. We've got expectations and boundaries to uphold. We've got preconceived notions and pictures of perfection sugar plum fairies dancing in our dreams. and usually they've been toe-tapping up there for quite a while. so yeah, we get demanding.

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Carling Harps
on the #cleaneating dilemma

No, I'm not a vegan - please stop asking.

Honestly, I’m having a moment today. It’s sort of insane that I’m even writing this right now.

I understand that social media can be confusing. That its all green smoothies and zucchini noodles and raw cookies and I get it. Hell, I’m certainly a part of it. I’ll admit I shy away from posting birds eye views of meals that include animal products mostly due to the backlash in the yoga community and the all caps comments of “AHIMSA YOU SHOULD TRY IT” that are inevitable. I once posted a recipe for bone broth and just about had to break out the UFC gloves and rear naked choke holds to wrangle in the chaos.

So yeah, I understand that I have many vegan or 100% plant based followers and I end up tiptoeing around your feeds to keep the comments at bay.

We all love to categorize. boxes and compartmentalization make us comfortable. So c’mon Carling, what are you? what ‘diet’ do you follow? It’s one of the most common questions both Patrick and myself get, and the one we try to avoid the most.

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Carling Harps
on grounding.

There is a power in repetition. a deep vibration that comes with practice and a rhythm that soothes once we finally find it.

 Finding the pulse, that’s usually the hard part.

I know it can be easy to get lost in the half-counts and wander off tempo. When I find myself losing the beat, I try to slow it down. Slow my self down. my body, my brain, my breath. find the counts and sink into the comfort of repetition. listen intently and wait for the bass. that deep down omnipresent pulsation. invoking the low vibrations meant to make me feel grounded and steady.

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Carling Harps
on times when yoga doesn't help.

Yoga can cure anything. That’s a thing right? I’m pretty sure I’ve seen it on the internet, maybe even at Barnes & Nobles. Somebody shared an article about it on Facebook and it had tons of likes. It's definitely real. I’m sure of it.

If you’ve read the infamous Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar (you’ve probably at least skimmed it) then you know that by the glory of yoga and say, by doing inversions for example, you can cure your anemia, your infertility, persistent headaches, annoying insomnia, and I can’t quite remember what else is on the list, but I know it’s very long. Headstands will solve my Iron deficiency? Hallelujah, because eating spinach, or red meat, or cooking with cast iron certainly aren’t reliable enough sources.

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Carling Harps
on home.

It's a funny thing, making a home and then leaving it. I mean, we've all moved right? we've all packed up our shit, taped up the boxes and hauled it off. sent it, sent ourselves, off to our new 'home'.

we've all invested the time. hung pictures, scrubbed floors, bought shelves. filled those shelves. organized those closets. settled into those walls.

so what happens when you pack it all up, but there's no where to go?

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Carling Harps