The world needs you open.Read More
It's really an amazing time of year...
This spring I've been loving spending time in the sun, rolling out my mat outside, going for walks, making smoothies, and taking time to slow down and breathe it all in.Read More
In the last few weeks, I've been savoring moments when I can release what is old and needs to be surrendered.
I've been organizing paperwork, tidying rooms, and making space for my yoga mat.
I've been talking to friends about the past, and seeing what ways I need to (and am ready to) let go of it.
I've been writing down my thoughts.
Taking time to sit. To notice. To breathe.
To imagine my whole body, mind, and spirit free from clutter.
What do you need to release in order to be more present? What practices help you do this?
If you're feeling a little lost on where to start, or overwhelmed by the thought of surrendering something, it can be helpful to simply do one thing.
Clean your yoga mat.
Take a long, hot bath.
Take a walk somewhere barefoot and picture every bit of negative energy, every old, stale, untrue thought, every doubt-- picture them leaving you, exiting your body through your feet, being left to dust.
This month's Yogi Surprise box helped me clean house. My two favorite products: the Pura Botanica Bath Infusion Rose' Retreat (it has mineral sea salts, essential oils and curative herbs and flowers...um, amazing!), and the Happy Spritz Namaste Ninja Handcrafted Aromatherapy (an energizing blend that has anti-microbial properties and will keep your mat feeling, and smelling, super fresh.)
I encourage you to try a little movement, despite the discomfort.
Five minutes. Maybe ten. Set yourself a small enough goal that it's really hard to make an excuse not to move.
Take a walk around the block. Do ten pushups and ten situps in your living room. Three sun salutations.
Do only the yoga poses that feel good, the ones your body is calling out for, and for now, skip the rest. Release any feeling of guilt, any notion of, 'I could do better,' or, 'I'm not good enough.'
It may not feel fun to get started, but I'd guess that afterwards you feel grateful you made time for keeping your vital energy moving.
Find a little movement that works for you in your day. See how you feel.
Photos in this post by Ken Johnson of CKCImage.com (1), Brynna Bryant of Respiro Photography (2) and Justin Kral of Kral Studios (3).
PS, as a side note, this post is as much for me as it is for you... so please remember, you're not alone on the days when you might struggle to make time for movement. And if you happen to be having a sh*tty day, this is another great post to check out.
You can find the videos online over at Gaiam. They're a great deal -- I recommend the $40 'Ultimate Collection' which includes 10 different yoga practices!
Music is such a beautiful complement to yoga.
I love finding music that is both relaxing and invigorating -- an inspiration for that perfect sweet spot in a pose where you're balancing effort and effortlessness while holding your edge.
Recently I was lucky to receive a copy of Adam Lees' yoga/relaxation album called "First Light." His music is perfect for any yoga or meditation practice; it doesn't distract, but only focuses the mind and softens the attachment to any one sensation or thought.
Starting college as a BFA in Musical Theater, I quickly gained a lead role as a freshman, being Berger, in Hair: the Musical. After receiving this huge ego boost, I then got hit with a flurry of reality checks in class, not getting cast the following semester. I was producing crappy work that I knew was life-less….not filled with ME. I realized I couldn't just wait around expecting my “muse” to come when I was “struck by inspiration.”
Next question: How could I systematically create the reality I wanted, by applying small things to my life, with hard work, discipline, and playfulness?
Yoga could be a catalyst for creativity and incubating new ideas, and knowing that once I embody my Highest Self, the work can just flood forth through my mind to pen, clay, or machinery, and body. One of the first things I did after beginning my “Blissiplines” was end a 3-year relationship that wasn't life giving or supporting my growth, or hers. I began to realize that I had a choice in literally every facet of my life, including the way I interpreted any situation in life. I created a small group of friends/loved ones, (including my highest self) that empowered me, and that I could do the same for.
Practicing in public generates so much positive energy, don't you think?
Update: I postponed my Dharma training but am currently training at Leap Yoga in Folsom, CA to teach vinyasa.