Category Archives: encouragement

Be Keeping SH*T Real

There is a pervasive message in our culture that is saying “stay positive”, “think positive”, shift your mindset to be more positive and everything will be AWESOME!

Those that know me, know that I do have a positive mindset, but I did not, I repeat, I DID NOT, get there by being positive all the flipping time.

Rails and Trails, 2018

Let me tell you a little story about these three geniuses above:

My boys were 7,4 and 2 years old when my mom was dying. This grief experience would become the greatest gift that our family has been given! Plus, isn’t it amazing to know that we all having the incredible Nana waiting for us in heaven. When we were given this gift of grief, I spoke with my counselor, a tremendous amount, about how we grieve as human beings She taught me, and my children showed me, that the very best grievers are actually children. What they do is feel things very deeply, stay in each moment and move in and out of grief very quickly. This was exactly our experience. They would see or remember something from Nana, wham, the tears would come. Then they would see their favourite LEGO and wham, they are smiling and playing again. My counselor taught me that the best thing I could do for them, and myself, was to sit with them in their grief, feel things with them and wait for them to shift or helps them slowing shift after being present with them. Rarely, did I need to do anything but merely sit and be present with them.

Imagine this same grief journey, if I constantly put on a positive face, ignored their feelings and told them to be positive. “Just be positive” said over and over and over again.  In a child’s world, this would be completely invalidating their feelings and not give them the permission to feel or grieve. I wonder what counselling they would need later in life to get over not feeling the feelings they had during this time?  

This year is going to be our fifth Christmas without my marvellous mama and I must admit that I have become an expert at negotiating grief. I sit with myself. I feel things deeply and then gently move myself when I know I am ready.  I cried in the pool this morning while swimming lengths. I feel the feelings, I let the tears flow. 

Germany, 2003
Robyn’s wedding, 1998

I am blessed because I can now see and sense this grief process working in others and I easily give them space to move through the process. We do this often with relationships, situations, and even with our food.  I can see people giving themselves lashes for not being positive enough or at all.  I can see people trying so hard. 

This brings me back to the positive rah rah that is overpowering our culture.  I WANT TO BE A PERMISSION BEARER.  As I observe and grow a business in this culture of a constant positivity, my message has clearly become “keep sh*t real”. The more honest my customers can be with me, the more I can walk with them. The more we can sit with each other in the real sh*t that exists in this world, the more we can move each other into positive places. We have to sit together, listen together and then move!

Feel the feels. 

Sit in them. 

Then look, seek and find solutions and that positive place. 

When you look around and feel like sh*t because you aren’t positive enough, pretty enough, doing enough or…. <insert what it is for you here>… keep it real and sit with your sh*t. And realise that when I look around and see the pervasive positivism overwhelming my feed, it’s usually being put out into the world by men, young couples or empty nesters. You don’t often seen mom’s waking up to puking kids or having to put every single thing they had planned that day on hold because of a child with a fever, spewing the positivity message 24/7.

It’s about keeping sh*t real. Finding a way to keep taking one step forward every day towards where you want to go. Surrounding yourself with people who will cheer you on and be positive even when you have spit up on your shoulder and haven’t combed your hair.  Find that tribe that keep things real and can be positive when you can’t be.  

If you aren’t feeling that you are good enough, positive enough or that you are doing enough, STOP that sh*t.  Remember my lessons from grief that my boys taught me.  

God has given you many talents that you may not be able to see right now.

That’s okay.

God is taking you through a season that is going to give you great strength.

That’s amazing.

God is going to reveal everything to you in EXACTLY the right time.

That’s incredible.

BUT, life isn’t always okay, amazing or incredible.

But you “Cann”: 

Always hold hope.

Always brings peace.

Always hold love.

Always keep sh*t real.

Even when the positivity police try to overtake you.

Learn from my greatest teachers, my boys, in this upcoming season.

Sit exactly where you are.

Feel things deeply.

Move when you are ready.

Always hold hope.

Always bring peace.

Always hold love.

Always keep sh*t real.

😘 Joanna Cann

Be Finding Balance Again (Overconsumption has taken over!) 

Overconsumption rules the world right now and, in my opinion, is ruining the world. 

From the plastics that are flooding the earth and waters. 

To the devices that are flooding our brains and bodies. 

On to the food that is stripping our lands of minerals and then not giving our bodies what it needs even when we think it’s good for us. 

Overconsumption has taken over! 

Did you know that most teens now spend more time on devices than an adult spends at their full time job per day?  

Did you know that some family’s have their children signed up for activities every single day of the week? 

Has anyone else noticed that rarely do we talk about reducing or reusing what we consume, instead all our energy has gone into recycling?   

Tonight, I lift my glass and say cheers to finding a balance life. 

True balance. 

Harmony within and around. 

Time and space to be. 

Energy and effort to do. 

Balance between men and women. 

Testosterone and estrogen. 

Just enough.  

All around. 

In balance.  


Our three boys ages, 10, 8 and 6 receive four hours of screen time PER WEEK. Today, their brains were flooded with the sounds and sights of skiing on snow. Their bodies climbed trees, hammered rocks, played piano and even jumped on mattresses in the basement later in the day.  

My husband and I don’t allow screens anytime on Mondays and Wednesdays when the boys have activities.  The rest of the week, they are free to choose when they use their “tech time”.   They are open to choose how to spend their free time.  It is in these in between time that is so fun to see what they create. 

Imbalance is killing us. 

Overconsumption is killing our planet. 

Each of us, can find ways to create balance. 

Individually it is easy. 

Collectively it makes a difference. 

Balance in mind, within our bodies and through our spirit.  

Imagine this place of balance for you, what it would look like and feel like. 

Who would be around you? 

What would you eat? 

What activities and moments of stillness would flow through the day? 

What would you do tomorrow if you lived a day in balance? 

You ‘Cann’ do it. 

😘 Joanna Cann 

Be Catching What Tony Robbins was Throwing 

I am unique. 

You are unique. 

Our worst days can become our most SHINING moments! 

We can live a beautiful life! 

Thank you Tony Robbins for these life altering, state changing facts.  When I sat, danced, screamed and sang alongside 15,000 other awake people last week only a baseball throw from Tony Robbins my body and mind changed on a cellular level.  


My family has noticed it. My friends have felt it.  My God had acknowledged it.  

Changed. 

On. 

A. 

Cellular.  

Level.  

Forever.  

This isn’t about motivation or will power or trying to push ourselves to “get over stuff” or be better!   

It is about embracing our suffering, changing gratitude for fear and living in a playful, joyful high energy state.  It’s about creating and living in a beautiful state every moment of ever day. 

Can you imagine it? 

Does this sound like an exciting, beautiful life?  

It is! 

Completely a wondrous world seen with new eyes. 

A world where challenges happen and I can use the Tony Robbins response, “Isn’t that fascinating?” Try that one on for size next time things don’t go your way and watch your heart rate not even skip a beat. 

Isn’t that fascinating?  

I now live in a state of pure determination, high energy, not fuelled by will power, while living in a beautiful state for me, JJ! 

It’s not about stuff, big houses or shiny cars. 

It is about people. 

For me. 

People.  

Relationships. 

Emotion. 

Energy.  

Dating my man, Sexy Neck, every single day! 


Being fully present with my boys as my phone sits in a handmade Lego box with a phone charger included. 


 Listening to my Peeps needs, meeting them where they are and sharing all that I am learning especially what Tony Robbins is all about. 

I live in effortless ease.  

With discipline with my food, movement and phone.  

The three keys for me.  

I upgrading my inner home every day. 

Spiritually. 

With support. 

Bringing sexy back.  

If you want to feel what Tony’s all about. Let’s chat… because I am more than happy to keep the ball rolling. 

A beautiful state. 

Using motion for emotion.  

In gratitude. 

For all that I have.  

And for all that I am going to do!

#befree #100million#abeautifulstate 

Be Floored by a Ted Talk 

Creating and playing using words is my love.  

It soothes my soul and brings me great strength in moments that I feel weak.  

Today, I watched this Ted Talk TWICE and his stories, experiences and words on rejection brought me strength as I reflected on my stories, experiences, and my words. 

May this bring you as much freedom as it brought into my day! 

Jia Jiang – What I Learned From 100 Days of Rejection

Be Open to Others Stories 

Our family got yelled at today!

Yup, “retired” guy yelled at us.  

Full on angry ‘yell’! 

Here’s the scenario and you can see the story from both sides: 

Our family of five had skied across the mountain to get to our favourite run almost on the backside of the ski hill.  It was a gorgeous, sunny, slushy-snow kind of day.  

We made it to the run right as the ski patroller was putting up the closed sign.  I spoke to him and asked if he was closing it because of hazards.  He said, “No, I am just closing it because it’s the end of the day.”  I looked at my watch realizing we had plenty of time to get down the run and then asked if we could take the run, even though he had just put the closed sign on it.  He asked if we were good skiers.  I assured him we were.  He told us to go ahead.  

As we stood at the beginning of the run, with its closed signs at the top, a “retired”guy came off the t-bar and proceeded to yell at us saying “Don’t you know the run is closed! It’s closed!”  

We chuckled and floated down the pristine, diamond-flecked snow on our skies.  And we talked about this valuable lesson.  

How often do we judge what others are doing as ‘wrong’ in our minds? 

I know none of us would yell at strangers, but how often to we do this? 

How often do we see what others are doing and create stories in our own minds about what is going on? 

Imagine now, like we did today, if we took the time to be open and get to know others stories.  


Imagine if we lived our own stories and just sat in openness about others? 

Kindly. 

Lovingly. 

Not being yelling “retired” guy in words or thought.  

Sitting in an open posture. 

Living our stories. 

Day by day. 

Being open to others stories. 

Kindly. 

Lovingly. 

Listening.  

Learning.  

Living in our story.  

Open to others stories. 

Be Searching for Something 

As I sit watching the sunset, I ponder that ‘something’ I search for.   That ‘something’ that will fill feelings of grief, sadness and overwhelm.  

That space that I try to fill every time I open my phone to check Facebook. 

The hole I avoid when I run away from what I am feeling.  

The darkness I turn from every time I sit in numbness, not wanting to feel, not wanting to go down old trodden paths of pain.

But sometimes life doesn’t give us a chance to avoid.  

It allows us the privilege to sit up, to notice, to see our grief journey clearly and how much pain we have turned into gratitude.  

This search for something that is really nothing outside of us at all. 

We can’t avoid living life and why would we want to. 

The privilege to be with our people, to see into the eyes of their souls and to get to know them on a deeper level. 

Yes, Facebook could do that. 

Walking away could help us reflect. 

And that darkness I talked about, well, that only helps us see the brightness of the light.  

See, I have learned to let go of my sense of judgement as things are neither good nor bad, they just are.  I have also learned to be present with what I am feeling, as these feelings are neither good nor bad, as well, they just are! 


So, as you search for that ‘something’ today may you first look within your soul, your beautiful unique self sitting within you.  Resting in your spirit.  

Being you! 

Then may you look around you at those imperfectly perfect people around you. Building Knex, asking about the birds and the bees, reading books, playing with pillows… are what my people are currently doing. 

Being them! 


Search for that something that is already within you. 

Beautiful.  

Imperfectly perfect. 

Neither good nor bad. 

Just being. 

Full of strength.  

Overflowing with hope.  

Sitting in the presence of His peace.  

Knowing you are loved.  

Searching for nothing. 

Found! 

*written for a special person in our life on this significant ‘something’ kind of day! 

Be Finding Forward

Forward.

Moving not backwards.

Forwards.

Moving in a direction.

Which one will we choose?

Moving from the west to the east.

Finding the dance that takes you forward.

Into your dreams.

Into your spirit.

Into your spidey sense.

Presence.

How does one stay present?

Moving forward?

This is what I have learned and this is what propels me forward.

Taking peeks into the tiny, narrow, rear view mirror to pour gratitude into where I came from.

Gratitude.

Love.

Letting go.

be-finding-forward

Looking straight-forward into my large, expansive windshield watching the exciting places I am going.

Joy.

Peace.

Light.

Eyes, wide open, looking for the gold thread of hope woven throughout my day.

Holding my empty hands of faith.

God’s goodness poured out over all our lives.

Into my hands.

Will we choose to look for it?

Will we choose to have open hands to receive it?

Moving forwards.

Dancing the dance of my life.

Trusting.

Fun.

Faith.

Forward.

Smooch, Joanna

Be Hope 

Hopelessness is a paralyzingly dis-ease.  I have felt it in the core of my being, the deep down dusty place that seems hard to reach.  Hopeless that circumstances will change.  Hopeless knowing death brings physical disconnection.  Hopeless knowing that I may no longer be the same.  

But, I stand and lie down today knowing that this did-ease called hopelessness can be overcome.  Our circumstance we absolutely cannot control, even though I thought I could, BUT we can control our conclusions about these circumstances.  

One wintery day, only two months after my mom died, I make a conclusion that only great goodness would come from the gift of grief I received from her death. I decided that I would live in a negativity fast and a positivity feast, as Steve and Wendy Backlund describe it.    Guess what happened?  The last three years have been a walk in greatness.  I have found my passion that melds my teaching brain, coaching mindset and mother’s heart.  I have found my meaning and my passion for how I can be a permission for hope no matter your circumstances.   Through great nutrition, an ever growing mindset and being able to learn new truths about myself every day through the circumstances around me, I have found hope and freedom!  

Hope replacing dis-ease.  

Hope in any circumstances.  

Hope overflowing.  

Hope pouring. 

Over me. 

Through me.  

Hope.  

Be Holding a Vision

“We become more able to articulate our own boundaries, dreams, and authentic goals. Our personal flexibility increases while our malleability to the whims of others decreases.” (The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron)

In my mind, I am holding a vision of a life where I spend more time with my brood of boys and close friends than I do currently.   

Expansive hours together.  

Cooking, drinking, talking, shaking things up! 

Magical memory making moments all over the world.  

Eating breakfast in Germany, lunch in France and Swiss fondue in a mountain hut.  

Riding and boating through the canals from Amsterdam to Budapest.  

Skiing, surfing and visiting our friend’s south of the border.  

Big visions. Big dreams.  Big ideals… that will be exciting to watch unfold.  

I have been holding smaller visions and watching them unfold, so I just hold and watch, hold and wait.  

Taking little steps every day! 

Two weeks ago, we watched our neighbourhood Block Watch signs go up.  In September, I held the vision that our neighbourhood would have a block watch.  I talked to a few people, collected names, we attended a meeting and viola, the block watch is in place with 100% participation. 


Two years ago, when I started my health journey with my nutrition company, I envisioned that our family would rent a place at a local ski hill.  I didn’t have expectations on how but I knew it would happen.   I started talking to people and looking.  Soon, a friend heard we were looking and viola, we are now enjoying our second year at the condo.  


Allow me to be a living testimony that you can create beautiful, wild, wonderful visions for your life.  Hold tight to them and don’t allow the expectations of others or the ‘old stuff’ in your life to hold you back.  

Being myself.  

Listening to my heart.  

Living my life.  

Holding my visions.  

Comment below if you would like to share your vision: 

Being vulnerable.  

Adding accountability.  

While watching your visions unfold.  

Be Water-y

Can we all agree that air and water are basic fundamentals for life? 

Air, our bodies magically intake and expel it. 

Water, on the other hand, is a process that we ourselves need to choose to consume. 

A choice. 

A small daily choice.  

A choice. 

That can add up to a lot.  

Living giving. 

Nourishing.  

Rejuvenating. 

Water.   

Here’s my question this morning: Why do someone people choose not to consume water? 

<insert your personal excuses here>

Too busy.  

Don’t like the taste. 

I forget. 

I don’t like buying water. 

I don’t like drinking it warm. 

These are the excuses I have personally heard. Any of these resonate for you? 

As I walk with people on their health journeys to have more energy, shed some weight, perform better or age more youthfully, I always talk about water because most people are as dehydrated as the Arizona desert that I am currently visiting.   Most people don’t notice the incredible sources of water all around us, ready to be poured into our bodies. 

I could go into the science behind our bodies and water.  I could tell you the percentage of water that makes up our bodies.  I could go on and on, but I won’t.  

Here’s my heart for all people: 

⭐️ Drink half your body weight in ounces every day.  

⭐️ If you exercise, drink more. 

⭐️ If you drink coffee, tea or any type of soda, drink more as well.  


Keep putting deposits of water into your body through the day and watch the beautiful returns on your investment you will receive.  

More energy. 

Glowing skin.  

Better poops. 

Less smelly urine. 

Happy cells.  

Glorious you!  

May you be filled to overflowing on this super duper Saturday. 

Smooch 😘 Joanna