Inner Peace in a Busy World

I always had this idea that I should be better than I am.  I think a lot of us have these thoughts. We say to ourselves: “I should focus more. If should live up to my potential. I should be more like that other person.”

These were the thoughts that buzzed through my head on my commute to Harvard in the Fall of 2015. I was a Masters student at Brown University and an exchange scholar at Harvard. I’d commute twice a week from Providence to Boston. The commute would last about an hour. I’d leave my house around 9 am and return about 9pm.

A couple of weeks into this routine, I noticed my brain became extra busy. Like really busy. With assignments from 5 classes piling up. My internship. My job on campus. I felt scattered.

I judged myself because there were people on the train who’d been doing this commute 5 days a week for over 15 years. To me, the thought of commuting like this for even a week exhausted me.

So…. what did I do about it?

I started experimenting.

I got some earplugs. I’d put them in and I’d sit in the subway people watching, wondering what their lives were like analyzing their facial expressions. It seemed like they were happier than I was. They seemed to be at peace.

I thought the earplugs would afford me peace and quiet, but my thoughts got louder and more chaotic. I felt trapped in my head. Truthfully, I never fully realized how trapped in my thoughts I really was.

I was hard on myself for feeling this way. Why couldn’t I just sit in this train and enjoy the ride? Why couldn’t I just enjoy the journey??

It seemed like a deeper metaphor for life.

“Enjoy the journey.”

Late one night while surfing the internet looking for solutions … I discovered meditation.

Like a lot of us, I’d heard of meditation, rolled my eyes at it, and was unwilling to give it a shot. I didn’t think I was one of those people who could do it. I really thought I had a busier mind than most, and that meditation couldn’t help me.

But, I was desperate, so I gave it a shot.

One of the meditations I started with were mantra meditations I learned from Gabby Bernstein. These are meditations you do while repeating a phrase in your mind.

The one I started with was, “peace, begins, with, me”, “peace, begins, with, me.”

After trying it out for a few minutes, I instantly noticed my mind became more calm and at ease. I wondered, “whoa. Is this working?”

Meanwhile on my commutes to Boston, when I noticed my anxious thoughts take over and my fears begin to creep in I would do this meditation both with my eyes open and closed.

“Peace, begins, with, me… peace, begins, with, me.”

A couple weeks into this practice, I felt more at ease. I felt like I could control my anxiety, which otherwise seemed to creep up out of nowhere. Like the boogyman waiting to scare me.

After doing this practice on my commute, I decided to begin waking up earlier and meditating in the morning while I was still at home. What I noticed was that I felt better even before I got to the train station.


Here’s what I learned from my commutes to and from Harvard:

Feeling grounded doesn’t come from being in a specific place, with specific people, or doing anything in particular.

Feeling grounded comes from a deeper sense of knowing that you are safe, and at peace wherever you may find yourself.

My scattered thoughts were there before I commuted. I simply projected my anxiety and fears onto my experience on that train.

I encourage you to observe your world and see where you are projecting chaos.

I encourage to forgive yourself for not being present, for not being focused.

I ask you… can you feel rooted and at peace regardless of what is happening around you?




*my commute to Harvard on video.*


1 year anniversary

Over a year ago, I decided to transform my life.
Since then I:
Graduated with a Master’s from Brown University.
Moved across the country.
Started my coaching business.
Make my money with my business.
Show up for myself and my clients everyday.
Became a healthier, happier person.
Most importantly, I allowed myself to be the powerful leader that I am.
Here’s what sobriety has taught me about life and business.
YOU have to be willing to ask for help.
YOU have to decide that enough is enough and that you will have control over your actions and your decisions.
AND, that it’s literally impossible to please people — don’t try.
It’s bizarre as hell because I never fully realized that I had a problem with prescription drugs and alcohol.
SO many people around me dealt with the same thing, so I thought it was normal.
I thought it was normal to depend on those things.
See, I’ve always been a happy person.
Happiness was not the issue.
I know you know what I mean because you’re also a high-achiever.
You’re also a pretty happy person.
But somewhere along the line, you started depending on things to maintain your high vibes.
THE ONLY time I allowed my personality to truly shine was when I was drinking.
I THOUGHT that it was alcohol that gave me permission to be me.
I THOUGHT I needed permission to be me.
I learned that I could be me without drugs and alcohol.
That my clients needed me to be me.
That I needed me to be me.
Sobriety has taught me that you will NEVER be ready to transform your life.
>>We are creatures of habit.<<
I ask you today:
What negative habits do you need to get rid of?
What is holding you back?
Why are so afraid to take action on your life?
Who are you afraid to disappoint?
Where is this fear coming from?
When will you decide to be your own rescue?
Why are you still people pleasing?
>>So I ask you, when will you breakthrough your limiting beliefs and patterns, and start living your life fully??<<


California Part 5: A Long Weekend in Long Beach

I recently traveled to Long Beach, California and… I loved it! Have you ever been to Long Beach? I was first of all pleasantly surprised to arrive at an indoor/outdoor airport.

I stayed at an airbnb 4 blocks from the beach. Palm trees. Sunshine. Warmish/Coolish breeze. Friendly people. Fresh veggies and avocado on everything. Yes! I especially loved the Shoreline Pedestrian Bike path which stretches for several miles along Long Beach.

I also loved that my morning walks and runs included passing a neighborhood park with exercise machines. A little morning walk is a game changer! It’s such an easy way to implement exercise and movement into your daily routine.

Some photos from my travels below.


Feel free to reach out. I’d love to hear any recommendations you have on Long Beach!

Welcome Readers!

It really throws me off when people ask me “where are you from?” or “what do you do?” Every.single. time. These are completely viable questions, but you see, it’s complicated. I was born in Venezuela, spent a lot of time in the East Coast + Florida, and have moved around a few times as an adult. And, I do a lot of things!

So, instead of telling you “what I do” or “where I’m from” I am going to share with you my “why”. Why I do what I do.

I love that inspiring feeling. You know, that moment when you read or watch something that gets you fired up! That feeling that you can do anything. Write that book, travel to that country, get that degree, ask that person out. I love that feeling. I love helping others create that feeling for themselves. I love seeing people in my community and the world around me pursue their dreams, passions, and overall interests. I love that entrepreneurship is messy but at the end of the day you know you were 100% true to yourself and your beliefs.

I love helping others feel inspired. I love helping people achieve their goals and helping them feel beautiful in the meantime. Whether that’s with health coaching, storytelling, photography,  or styling services. To me, it’s more of the why that matters. It’s helping people feel excited about another day. Excited about being here NOW.

I realize that it’s messy, frustrating, and confusing at times. I get that. But, to know that I did my best at whatever I did using the skills I have, is truly what drives me.

I believe that the victory lies in the small moments.

Like the moments of a great conversation, or quiet time to yourself, during a haircut… but the final result is just an effect of something great.

Like the moments where you cook a new healthy recipe… but the final result is just something you get to enjoy. The satisfaction of learning something new and knowing that you did something good for your health is the ultimate reward.

Like the moments when I’m interviewing a business owner and they remember why they started and are excited beyond belief that I asked them. That they get to have photos of the brick-and-mortar they created. That is the satisfying moment for me. The final blog post and nice photos are just an effect of something great.

That’s how I see it. That the magic is in the process. The moments while you’re working towards that thing. The thing itself is great, but not the point. I believe our sadness and frustration lies when we focus on that thing. Because it’s never about that. It’s about the people, moments, and life that happens between now and getting it. It’s about the person we become in the process.

Now it’s your turn! What are your thoughts?

I love hearing from you and learning about you. Instead of asking you what you do, or where you’re from, here are my questions to you:

1- what are you most excited about in your life right now?

2- what are you most thankful in your life right now?

3- where you are writing from?


much love to you all,

Industrial Revolution CrossFit *An Interview with Kelly Carse: Founder, Owner, & Coach*

I have a really special interview to share with you today.

A little backstory: I, hesitantly, went to my first CrossFit class in January of 2015 after friends and family insisted I try it. I was really impressed by how welcoming and positive the CrossFit community was. There were people of all ages, backgrounds, ethnicities, and body types. The perception I had about CrossFit and the reality were so opposite! I feel thankful for my friends and family that encourage me to try new things — and I encourage you to do the same! Having a coach and community that help you develop the correct fitness techniques and strategies will really skyrocket your results.

If you’ve been curious about CrossFit, go check out Kelly’s gym. There’s no reason not to — your first class is free! Go for the adrenaline and stay for the friendships. Be sure to tell her Winter Moon sent you.

Without further adieu, Kelly Carse!


tell us about Industrial Revolution CrossFit (IRCF)!

Industrial Revolution CrossFit (IRCF) is Rhode Island’s newest CrossFit Box, located in a former Harley Davidson showroom where the locomotive charm and character are still intact. We opened our doors on March 1st of this year. We had 50 members the first month, and as of May 1st, we are now closely approaching 100. We have a staff of 14 seasoned coaches, including myself, whose positive energy and ideas helped design and create IRCF. We embrace inclusivity, so each member feels respected and feels an integral part of the community. We offer 5 CrossFit classes per day and a boot-camp style CrossFit, called Revolution-X, 4 days per week. We have large, beautiful locker rooms for men and women with 2 showers in each one, private lockers, yoga room and a full bar where we will be serving smoothies, protein shakes, and coffee. There is a warm and inviting community space where members can hang out and get to know each other.


what inspired you to start IRCF?

I was inspired by a desire to create something new and different. I wanted to create a CrossFit box full of love, grit, support, good energy, and brand new equipment! So, I joined hands with a group of like-minded CrossFitters who were hungry for change and who had some revolutionary community spirit. When Pawtucket, the home of the Industrial Revolution, turned out to have the perfect space, the name was born: Industrial Revolution CrossFit.


tell us about how you came up with the name IRCF?

The name actually came from one of our coaches, Niki Brazier. There were 6 of us texting back and forth in a fury trying to find a name that captured the spirit of our community. Our name, Industrial Revolution CrossFit, captures and reflects not only our geographical location, but also our revolutionary spirit, and the grit and grandeur, might and mettle of our nation’s industrial revolutions.


what would you say your big vision for IRCF is?

My vision is to maintain a box where athletes can be all that they can be, where athletes are inspired to be the best that they can be, while feeling part of a community that recognizes and supports their quest for fitness and overall wellness. Along with an active nutrition program/component, we will be featuring workshops on gymnastics and other ancillary fitness, health and wellness programs such as yoga and sports massage. We will soon be opening a juice bar, and we look forward to getting outside as the weather improves, as there are ample nearby hills to run, fields to play on, and no doubt we will be firing up some paleo grills as the summer sets in.


when did your passion for fitness and coaching begin? when did you realize you loved CrossFit?

Through the encouragement of one of my sisters (she owns two CrossFit gyms in Massachusetts), I ventured to try it out in January of 2009. I was in the very first foundations class this gym ever had, not realizing at the time the impact this fitness phenomenon would have on me. After 18 months of CrossFitting, I qualified for the first ever Masters Division held at the CrossFit Games in Los Angeles, California. That was the summer of 2010. I finished 6th in the world out 15 participating athletes. In the process, I fell in love not only with the sport, but also with the people within the community. I found that I flourished not only physically but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually as well. The community inspired me to go for my Level 1 Certification and become a CrossFit Coach the fall of that year, 2010!


tell us, what inspires you in your personal life and in business?

What inspires me most are stories of women who have overcome incredible odds and have fought back to demand and receive justice. I am a strong believer in justice and empowerment and when I am experiencing hardship, either personally or professionally, I can always look to those stories to garner the strength and determination I need to overcome my own challenge. Their memory and stories also feed my desire to fight for justice where I can, and to create a space where people, especially women, feel empowered and respected.


tell us about the team members that are a part of IRCF?

IRCF has a coaching staff of 14, including myself. All of us are seasoned CrossFitters who take our sport of choice seriously, attending certificate programs and workshops. Our coaches are very involved in the community, and they participate in the decision-making process for the box. We are a very democratic gym, and we have a lot of fun!

if you had to choose one person in your whole life that has inspired you (alive or deceased), who would that be and why?

This person is Coach MacFadden from my Junior High School. He was the boys’ Jr. high school track coach. Novel in its time, he took on a group of us girls when there was no track team in existence for girls. He treated us like we were equals with the boys, and his generous spirit and willingness to go where no one had gone before: starting a girl’s track team, has always warmed my heart and inspired me. He gave so much to his athletes. So much so, that we athletes would work hard and do anything to please him. He encouraged me to continue running in high school where I became the first person ever from Ashland High School to go to the Ohio statewide meet in track! His courage, boldness, and sheer level of activity continue to inspire me to this day!! I can’t remember everything he said to us, but I still remember how he made me feel: empowered and strong!


where do you live now?

I live in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.

what place on this planet feels most like home to you?

The place that feels most like home to me is Seattle, Washington.

what made you decide to open IRCF here in Rhode Island?

We searched high and low for the right location. We wanted to be centrally located, with easy highway access, but mostly we wanted a large, safe space that could accommodate all of the programming we envisioned. We wanted a clean building in good shape with lots of amenities and possibilities. My wife, Donna Nesselbush, heard about a gym in Pawtucket that was going out of business. We went to check it out, and voila…it was the perfect building, space and location. Pawtucket is the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution, so it was completely meant to be.


what would you say is the best business advice you’ve received?

The best business advice I have received is to continue to believe in myself, our mission, and our vision no matter what and do not let anything or anyone deter us from that. If you believe in it strongly enough in your heart and add hard work, you will overcome all the obstacles and doubt you may face.


describe Rhode Island in a few words.

I have come to love Rhode Island for its ethnic diversity, its food, its art and culture scene, and for the richness of its gay community.

what is your favorite season, why?

My favorite season is late summer. I love the heat and feel of August because it reminds me a lot of my childhood and the fun we would have as kids in Ohio!!

what do you enjoy doing on your time off?

I enjoy time with my wife, Donna…going out for dinner, taking a walk on the boulevard, or a weekend away. I love being in her presence.

when do you feel the most creative, alive, and excited?

I feel the most creative, alive, and excited in the early evenings. There’s something magical about that time of the day!


what is one thing you can’t leave your house without?

The one thing I can’t leave my house without is my iPad, as sad as that is. It’s the reality of a business owner.

when do you feel your best?

I feel my best after I’ve just coached a class and witnessed athletes achieving their goals!!


favorite quote.

I don’t have a favorite quote, but I have a favorite poem. It’s “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost.

what is the best place you’ve ever traveled to?

The best place I’ve ever traveled to was Turkey…an unbelievably gorgeous country with some of the kindest women I’ve ever encountered.

what is one thing you want the world to know about you?

I want the world to know that my strongest virtue is love and my strongest value is justice. I share my love as freely as I can, and I will fight injustice wherever I see it!


what words of advice would you give to someone wanting to start their fitness journey, or are nervous to start CrossFit?

The words of advice I would give someone are to believe in achieving the impossible. I love the Henry Ford quotation, “[w]hether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right.” CrossFit is about digging deep inside yourself and mastering movements you never thought possible. It’s about reaching a higher level physically, emotionally, mentally and for some, even spiritually. It’s about being a part of a community that believes in you and applauds your achievements.


how can Winter Moon readers start their journey with Industrial Revolution CrossFit?!

You can start your journey with CrossFit at IRCF by going to our website at and signing up for a free intro class. You are also free to stop by our gym at 154 Smithfield Avenue in Pawtucket, Rhode Island and get a look and feel for our place.


what kinds of social media can we follow you on and how can our readers contact you?

You can follow us on our FB page, Industrial Revolution CrossFit and of course, our website at
You can also email me at Kelly [at] IndustrialRevolutionCrossFit [dot] com.
We would love to hear from you!!



// interview + photography by Olivia //