Self-Love Sunshine


There was hoar-frost here in Lakeville, Minnesota last week – the temp reached 28 degrees. The trees and prairie grass were covered with a breathtakingly beautiful coating of sparkling diamonds that only Mother Nature herself can create. For those of you who may not know what hoar-frost is, the definition is “a grayish-white crystalline deposit of frozen water vapor formed in clear still weather on vegetation, fences, etc.”  What a DULL explanation this is once you see it in reality. The attached picture gives you an idea of what it looks like but it does not do justice to its true beauty.

As I sat with my tea and contemplated the amazing frost, my mind wandered to a possible parallel between the beauty of hoar-frost and the seemingly frozen feelings we sometimes cover our heart with. It may seem like a good idea to do that because we think it helps keep us safe from emotional harm. The left-brain happily supports this rationalization and closes our heart to freeze out all feelings and emotion. Doing this is an extreme form of self-punishment. It not only stops the flow of love and compassion to and from others, it strangles our soul when we close the heart.

Fortunately, in nature, hoar frosts do not last long because the sun melts it away very quickly. If hoar-frost freezes your heart, lovingly open your heart and melt it off with some self-love sunshine. It brings more love into this world – and you know we sure need more of that.

Enjoy the day,

Dr. Deb

Healer, Heal Thyself

The Toughest One to Heal is Self.

I’ve been helping people heal and find balance for many years and my first difficult person to heal has arrived. ME! My biggest struggle is with the concept of how to heal SELF – how to dedicate 30 percent of my day toward my own self-care. It isn’t about making the time actually, it is how do I go about caring for my mind, my emotions, my body, and my soul when I’m so used to focusing on helping others do that.  Healing self demands a mind shift.

We are each a living system full of complex interactions of energy and information exchanges within our environment. When healers help others heal, they don’t focus on the 2+million stories individuals have in their heads, their painful memories, addictive tendencies, or even the wounded heart they are protecting. There is never judgement as we help others heal. We healers simply heal from a heart full of compassion.

Humans tend to be experts at judging self in a very harsh manner. This example of healers having difficulty in healing themselves is no exception. Many of us do not devote enough time to healing self simply because we have not practiced it nearly as much as we have practiced healing others. Are we afraid to heal because we might lose our identity of being a healer?  Healing takes hard work and courage. Are we afraid of failure? The pain inside us? Does the ego of the healer suffer when they discover they need healing? I think the answer is simple. We believe our needs comes last. In truth, we must come first to be able to heal others.

To all you healers out there, it’s time to heal self.

Dr. Deb

Bullied . . .

Never be bullied into silence.  Never allow yourself to be made a victim.  Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself.

Been there, done that, never again.

Kicking Ash


40977210_sIt has been said that “firewood is not the fire”.

Let’s think that through for a moment. Assuming this example is correct, firewood is the “fuel” to fire’s needs. Firewood would still be firewood without the fire and remains so until fire uses it. When fire uses the firewood to fuel itself, it morphs the firewood into ash. The fire actually changes the shape, look and feel of the firewood by destroying its previous existence as simple firewood. Interesting.

Let’s apply that to a second example, “anger is not violence”.  Anger is the fuel violence needs. Anger would still be anger without violence, it remains the same until violence uses it. When violence seeks out and uses anger to fuel its violence, as with fire and firewood, violence changes the shape and look of anger by intensifying it to the level of abusive and harmful proportions unlike its previous existence as simple anger. Anger has now become buddies with violence. Violent anger spreads like wildfire – leaving only ashes. Interesting.

And true.  As I was recovering from the abuse of my past, I was left with the metaphor of “ashes”.  What do I do with these ashes?  Study them, move them around, try to make sense of the patterns within the ash?

Eventually I decided to just kick the ash out of my life.


The Gift of Awe – A Letter to Self

Dedicated to My Sisters – Vicki & Sandy
(Originally Written January 2015)

“A Letter to Myself”

My thoughts are wandering back in time today – it’s been almost 10 years since both our sisters left their earthly physical form.  As I write to you Dearest Debbie, I notice with a sense of absolute wonder and awe how different “remembering” within the actual moments of the past is compared to “re-remembering ” those moments. Every experience in the “now” contains the beauty and heartbreak of a time when we could still physically touch and tightly hug our two sisters.

Dedicated To My Sisters
Dedicated To My Sisters

Oh lovely self, our spirituality and faith were certainly tested – our sanity probably more than those two put together ten-fold.  In spite of our losses, we stand stronger than ever because we now know we never truly lost them at all.

Stepping back in time, I’m remembering our sister Vicki’s last days.  You and I watched her pain and admired the unlimited amount of love and compassion she expressed to those she knew would be left behind.  Her daughters, her grandchildren, her sisters and friends. You remember how we felt as we watched her slowly slip away – the devastation of loss was blended together with the joy of having her finally released from pain.  It was like a cyclone of the good, the bad, and the ugly. But looking back, I also see the beauty of her illness; the true gifts we were given.  We were with her when she slipped way.  A gift we couldn’t see at the time, but none the less that gift of being with her now lives in our heart and soul.  A sacred lesson she shared with us was to never become a victim of her death or life’s experiences.  She taught us that letting her go would set her spirit free and that we would always have her within our memories and dreams.

It was tough working through the grief wasn’t it?  Little did we know another horror was lurking in the dark.  About one month after Vicki’s passing, our second sister Sandy was diagnosed with terminal cancer. During those next few months, we watched as she also fought so hard to live and win a battle that could not be won.  Sister Sandy, again, was a shining example of keeping a smile on her face to strengthen her husband, daughters, son, sister and grandchild for what they would soon face.  I so clearly remember her being silly, goofy, funny and sassy until those very last moments when she quietly passed away.  Our last sister slipped 12250775_saway in a cradle of immense love – she left her love behind for each of us.

This time the best lesson was “It’s good to be numb”.  We were protected for a bit. The pain was so intense, and feeling numb helped us feel cozy and safe in our fuzzy blanket of intentionally blocked feelings. Gifts can sometimes be dualistic. Without dualism, we would never know the difference between darkness and light. Between horror and happy.  “Numb” was great compared to feel anything at that time.  We needed safe – we needed time to build energy to even begin the grief process.  We put ourselves away and hid in solitude to heal. That was perfectly fine – it was our way.

I’m thankful for all life’s teachings but damn, another crisis struck when we consciously became aware that we were now orphans.  Both parents gone. Both siblings gone.  “We” had become an “I”.   To heal we had to walk through hell, feel the intense fiery heat of rage, and move beyond it all to come out the other side as a whole human being that no longer needed to be numb.  
The gift: we learned we are not alone – we never actually are.

Engelmann_Poster_Horiz_webWe rock Dearest Debbie.  We learned to stop living as a victim, we stood up and faced adversity, we dug deep and found the beauty and began to become our authentic self.  We took the intense loneliness and re-purposed that power to help us bravely begin walking down the healing path – on wobbly feet.  We began to grow and slowly push through the numbness so we could feel; maybe for the first time?  Our sisters spirits became the wind, the water, the air, the wood and fire that helped us bloom into the amazing person we now are.

We stand tall and proud today.  We help teach others how to break away from the vicious life-strangling bonds of “being” a victim, how to find balance in health and well-being.  We teach hope. We are blessed every single day. Why?  Because we know each person we encounter are in reality both our students and teachers – which means Dear Debbie, we are always a student and a teacher as well.

I love you “self”.  Maybe knowing that is the biggest lesson learned through these past years.  Authentic love and acceptance of self does in fact free the soul.  Thankfully, the beautiful spirits of our sisters Vicki and Sandy continue to soar with us and help guide us as we continue along our own path to reach beyond the stars – the gateway to all wonders.   My love continues to be with you Vicki and Sandy – and with you as well Dearest Debbie.20212568_l


Twelve Minutes In Time

The fog is very dense this morning here in Minnesota … very eerie, ghostly and mysterious. As the night tries to give up its possessive grip on darkness and allow itself to morph into a tiny glimmer of the approaching dawn, my thoughts and feelings are drawn toward reflection on seeing and not seeing, feeling and not feeling.  Oh, maybe even being and not being.  And the ability to not think and simply be.

My cat is curled up right in front of my keyboard purring away.  I have to wrap my arms around him to type and I must say some days this invasion IMG_20140704_191654102irritates me, but today, it is a wonder.  Comforting, warm, furry, sleepy “Oy” is totally in the moment and not concerned one iota about how my arms ache from keeping them wrapped around him while I type.  He just continues to purr and lovingly wink at me.  He is in the moment 100%. And I find I don’t care about the aching because all of this fills me and this moment in time with bliss.

Without intention I began to get into his purring, his unconditional love, the mist outside, everything.  The whole of it all.  And I became completely lost in the moment. Nothing else existed.  It was a moment that could never be recreated.  How long is a moment in time?  Well, I spent 12 minutes in that moment without ever comprehending time.  Incredible huh?

The reflection is this.  If I go through my day just being in each moment to the best of my ability, just image how enriched my life would be with all those long moments! How many “12 minutes” can I add to each day where I make no attempt to judge, control, or manipulate?  How many “12 minutes” have I already missed?  Doesn’t matter – the past and cannot be changed.  My goal is to work on seeing each moment and actually be in them.

The freedom to be in real-time is within us all.  We just need to take the time to be there.

Blessing to you all.


To all the 1’s & Zero’s

Am feeling the love at this moment – chance connection to an amazing group of folks just went down starting with CG. Ayling. That spread out like wildfire with re-tweets between us, re-tweets of my book in-process, Silencing Echoes, those tweets brought more re-tweets and new very “tweet” friends.  How wonderful a human connection can be – even within a bunch of numbers of code.

Ones and Zeroes – who would have thought that we connect millions with those two numbers.

Thanks to all the 1’s and 0’s I’m meeting.

You are all worth trillions…..

News Brief: Twin Cities Natural Awakenings – February 2015 – Twin Cities – Book Release


Falling Into the Garden of Healing

Debbie Engelmann

Debbie Engelmann, Doctor of Natural Health and owner of Created by Nature Wellness, LLC, in Burnsville, is a contributing author of the bestselling Heart to Heart: The Path to Wellness book, created by Älska Publishing.

Engelmann’s chapter, “Falling Into The Garden of Healing,” is the story of her plunge into deep depression and anger following the deaths of both her sisters months apart. By allowing herself to lose control, she grew from her personal grief and found her way back to wellness to become a healer herself. Engelmann shares, on a daily basis, her focus is on “ways to help others learn how to solve the greatest mystery of all—ways to love self in order to heal self.”

Writing the contributing chapter helped her not only affirm the events of her own healing, but also to recognize how fulfilling getting the message out to the world that we can all heal has become.

“We are all very diverse in how we heal, and the healing stories of how others heal themselves teach everyone that healing can happen—even to them,” says Engelmann.

The Heart to Heart book series features a collection of inspirational stories from some of the world’s most influential teachers in the field of personal development as well as contributions from self-help veterans and New York Times bestselling authors. Älska Publishing has experienced bestselling paperback sales despite the dire state of the current book market. With the closure of many of the large retail book stores, Älska has launched over 75,000 copies of their range of book series, with contributing authors spanning over 30 countries.

For more information visit or

Link:  Falling Into the Garden of Healing – Twin Cities Natural Awakenings – February 2015 – Twin Cities.