A “Kind” of Shift

Recipe: Black Bean and Yam Quesadillas

Be kind. To everyone, of course – but to yourself first.

I’d been really frustrated with a situation in my life lately and expressed this frustration to a good friend in an email. She wrote back a short reply that contained the words “Be gentle on yourself.” Those four little words had the power to shift my perspective 180 degrees. They pivoted me out of my angst and worry and into an entirely new frame of mind. My whole energy shifted, and in turn, so did the energy of the situation in question.

We cannot get enough of these types of reminders throughout our day. There is a serious lack of self love and kindness in our culture. Most of us are so hard on ourselves, trying to get ourselves to “measure up” to where we think we “should” be.  And when some days just feel hard, our knee-jerk reaction is to get hard about it. Before we know it we are caught up in our drama, our stories, and feeding it with our worry and ruminating.

But the simple notion of being kind to ourselves is like struggling through a maze only to discover there is a door that takes you out of the entire thing. It’s an outright refusal to engage. Deciding to be gentle with ourselves liberates us from the drama and repositions us in a place of acceptance and okayness about what is. It brings us back into the present moment where we can ask ourselves “what do I need right now?”

Anytime we have an outpouring of fear, anxiety or negativity, why not recalibrate that energy to be gentle with ourselves. Going easy on ourselves shifts us into compassion and love, and from here we are of much more value to those in our lives and to the world at large. Don’t make me say it……”BE GOOD TO YOURSELF!”

Inspired by a quesadilla I had on a recent trip, I found this recipe to recreate the magic at home. And magic it was. The best part is this is so simple and easy to make, and you can dress it up with whatever sides or sauces you want. I paired this with a simple salad of red pepper, tomato, corn, cilantro and lemon juice. As a sauce, I used a Dreena recipe out of her Vive Le Vegan to inspire a combination of avocado, cashew butter, lime juice, salt, soy milk and garlic – all whizzed up in a food processor ’til smooth and creamy.  The above, with a good scoop of your favourite salsa, is a dinner fit for…. — well, lovely and beautiful YOU! 

Black Bean and Yam Quesadillas

1-medium size yam (slice and boil, remove skins once soft)
1/2 c black beans, drained and rinsed
1-2  tsp chipotle sauce (to taste)
1/4 tsp cumin
Chopped cilantro (optional – I used this in my salad, so left it out here)
Salt to taste
8 small corn flour tortillas (to make four quesadillas) – Rather than folding a larger one, just used two smaller ones.

Cook your yam, drain the water and remove the skins. In the same pot, mash in chipotle sauce and cumin, and salt. There should be enough water from your yams still hanging around to ensure the mixture isn’t too dry. Mix in the beans. Heat a tortilla over medium-high heat, spread a layer of filling, and cover with another tortilla. Once bottom shows brown spots, flip and heat through until tortilla is crispy. Remove from heat and slice with a pizza cutter or knife. Serve with your choice of sides and sauces!

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3 thoughts on “A “Kind” of Shift

  1. Beautiful as always. Thanks for the reminder. I love what you wrote – “There is a serious lack of self love and kindness in our culture. Most of us are so hard on ourselves, trying to get ourselves to “measure up” to where we think we “should” be.” — We should run away from the “shoulds”!!!

    • Sat Nam Beautiful! I use a bit of the paste from Chipotle peppers that come in a can (found in the Mexican section!). Once opened, a can of these will last forever – just keep in the freezer and use as needed. ! xxoo

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