Tanishka is best known as ‘The Moon Woman’ with over half a million followers of her daily lunar guidance blog. She is a bestselling author of five books and has taught ancient women’s wisdom and practices for over 20 years. She is one of the pioneers of the global Red Tent movement and has trained women in 43 countries to facilitate Red Tent women’s gatherings via her online course.

Tanishka believes that removing toxicity from life and reconnecting with yourself is the key to living a happier life.

As she explains, “I see toxicity as anything which undermines our wellbeing & growth on any level – physical, emotional, mental or energetic. So the degree to which our lifestyle is toxic is dependent on how healthy our environment and choices are in those four key areas.”

“For example, if we value physical health we might workout, take supplements, get eight hours sleep a night and eat organic whole foods, but still be very toxic emotionally. This is indicated by an inability to set healthy boundaries with others based on a positive relationship with oneself… which can then impact our physical health. Or we might be very self critical, expecting ourselves to be perfect in all things.

“This keeps us in a toxic mind state, which again lowers our resistance to external toxins and retards our ability to heal, learn and grow. The area most often overlooked is our energetic health, since it’s not something our culture tends to validate, but it plays a key role in our health and wellbeing. For example, if we live or work in an environment where people are always tense, we pick up on this vibration and minimise our own light and authentic expression in order to not incite further anxiety. Modifying our behaviour in this way, especially over a sustained period of time really erodes our general health and wellbeing.

“we might workout, get eight hours sleep a night and eat organic whole foods, but still be very toxic emotionally.”

“In a nutshell, I would say healthy choices are motivated by self-love and unhealthy choices are motivated consciously or unconsciously by self-loathing. So rather than focus on specific bad habits, it’s more productive to focus on healing our perception of ourselves which then translates into making more self-honouring choices all round.”

When it comes to identifying toxic behaviours in ourselves, Tanishka describes it as “any self-soothing behaviour that we perform when we feel triggered into feeling old wounds. Usually it’s an attempt at seek a quick fix by our inner child through a means which often undermines our overall health; such as gorging on a doughnut, overspending on clothes or even buying a women’s magazine that will ultimately result in us feeling worse about ourselves.”

These behaviours are not just limited to conscious actions. As Tanishka explains, “These are the sorts of self-sabotaging behaviours we do without thinking, without really engaging with our highest intelligence. We do them as a reaction, which forms a pattern of dependency on anything that offers us no true nourishment on any level — like cigarettes, sugar or MSG. Less obvious toxic behaviours are those that are socially sanctioned or even rewarded, like workaholism. It is driven by an unconscious need to gain love through achievement or a deep seated fear that we are not enough as we are. Even personal growth, religion or yoga can be toxic if pursued with a toxic mindset in an attempt to be perfect or more acceptable.

“the most insidious toxic behaviour we all need to be mindful of is our cultural tech addiction”

“I would say the most insidious toxic behaviour we all need to be mindful of is our cultural tech addiction – given each digital notification we receive results in a hit of cortisol, the stress hormone. The other big elephant in the room is pornography which is toxic for our patterns of human relating.”

To identify if you yourself are living a toxic lifestyle, Tanishka advises looking at the things that compromise your physical, emotional, mental or energetic wellbeing.

Asking yourself what is compromising these four areas is “the quickest way to identify which people, environments and substances are having a toxic effect on you. The more we stay connected with our feelings, the more we can respond by making self-honouring choices so we feel calm, vital and empowered more of the time rather than anxious or overwhelmed. This can be a challenge when so much in our culture encourages us to disassociate from our feelings through constant distraction…’buy this, watch this, did you know this’ etc, so it’s an act of self-care to ensure we minimise our exposure to places of high distraction such as urban precincts, shopping centres, casinos, theme parks and video game parlours, and increase our time in nature, which enhances our connection with our true self – our authentic feelings and intuition – the divine intelligence of our soul.

“Most people know this but get caught up in what they might miss out on should they turn away from the bright lights…but our challenge is to become like a butterfly rather than die trying to be closest to the excitement of the light bulb!”

However, Tanishka hasn’t always been connected with her self on this level. She tells us that her 20s was a decade that involved addiction and unhappiness: “In my early 20’s I was addicted to cigarettes, marijuana, caffeine and sugar; plus I was eating foods that I didn’t realise I was intolerant to. I was also surrounding myself with people who mirrored my lack of self love and self respect. I used to put myself down for laughs as a stand-up comic and also seduced men for money as a stripper… so both my jobs were highly toxic too! I also lived in an inner city area with pollution of every kind — noise pollution, eye pollution and air pollution.”

When Tanishka discovered ancient women’s wisdom, she started seeing herself and life differently.

“It transformed my mindset from one of seeking perfection and outer gratification to feeling empowered through understanding and insight which enabled me to start making good choices. This meant less drama and a life which feels more aligned with my heart.”

So how does Tanishka balance modern day life with practices of ancient wisdom?

“These days I still drink tea and sometimes have sugar in something as a treat, but generally I opt for no sugar or substitute with coconut sugar, which is half the GI. I also bake paleo treats to reduce carbs which convert to sugar. I don’t smoke (pot or tobacco) although I do enjoy the odd glass of wine or apple cider, so I’m not militant about avoiding toxicity as I believe pleasure is important in a balanced lifestyle. I only have people in my inner circle who are self aware, so they are honouring of themselves and others. My work involves sharing my insights with people as an author and teacher of ancient women’s wisdom which I love find nourishes my soul. I live in a forest surrounded by trees and wildlife. Who said ageing was a bad thing?! Personally I think we’ve been sold a croc there. Life gets better as our self love blooms!”

Tanishka’s latest book, ‘Goddess Wisdom’ is due for worldwide release with Hay House June 6, 2017 in conjunction with her ‘Goddess Wisdom’ online course. To find out more about her book go to: http://themoonwoman.com/goddess-wisdom/

To see her LIVE in the UK this May go to: http://themoonwoman.com/uk-events-2017/