Friday, February 28, 2014

Cleaning House

Lately, I've been doing lots of letting go. Sometimes it's been on purpose, like with cleaning my house or trying to cleanse my body and mind. Other times, it has not been on purpose; this morning the antique desk chair that I've had for over 15 years gave out from under me; one of its legs broke off completely. I also lost one of my favorite earrings, and recently, I let go of a relationship that had not been healthy for a long time. Some of this letting go has been sad, some funny, and some even scary. To the best of my ability, I've been allowing the letting go rather than resisting it. This time of the year, with the end of winter approaching and today especially, is a great time to practice "creative destruction."

Yesterday in India and this evening here in Taos, is Maha Shivaratri, the festival that honors Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva is the god of creative destruction, or destruction for a purpose. If you have something you would like to let go of: anything physical, mental, emotional or spiritual, today and tonight would be a great time to do it. Ask for Shiva's blessing with your purification practice. You can set an intention, clean out your closet, or take an Epsom salt bath. With Shiva's grace, feel new space opening in your being and with it, freedom.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Dreams and Reality

"If your dreams and reality cannot be reconciled, 
do whatever you can to accept your reality 
and work with it in a loving way."

Friday, February 21, 2014

It Accumulates

If you come to my yoga class, you may know that I love taking an inhale in a lunge, then straightening that front leg and coming into in a forward bend on the breath out. After a certain student of mine had been taking my class every week for a few months, she told me about how doing that over and over again "accumulates." "Nice word for it," I thought. She said she could feel how repeating that simple sequence as much as we do was opening her hips and hamstrings.

I see the same thing with my B.E.S.T. clients who are committed to coming every week, and even the ones who are committed to coming every other week. Their consistency continues to raise the bar of their awareness and how good they feel in their bodies and in their minds.

Each positive step we take towards our health and our own well-being, and away from unhealthy patterns and relationships really is a step, and with each one, we get further away from what we're letting go of. 

Each day we practice, each day we're kind to ourselves and others propels us into an even better tomorrow; it does accumulate. Mr. Iyengar says "The highest point of yesterday  should be the lowest point of today;" dang that's forward-moving action.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Prayer for Control Freaks #2

"The more you try to fix it, 
the more you reinforce the belief that it's broken."

Friday, February 14, 2014

Back in NY Altar #1

"The Welcoming Prayer"
Gently become aware of your body and your interior state.

Welcome, welcome, welcome.
I welcome everything that comes to me in this moment
because I know it is for my healing.
I welcome all thoughts, feelings, emotions,
persons, situations, and conditions.

I let go of my desire for security.
I let go of my desire for approval.
I let go of my desire for control. 

I let go of my desire to change any situation condition, 
person, or myself.

I open to the love and presence of God
the healing action and grace within.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

More Open Questions

One time I was talking to my neighbor Raven about being in relationship; we agreed it's important not to need the other person to be ok in order for you to be ok. This comes naturally to lots of folks and not so naturally to lots of other folks.

It's subtle, but asking more open questions helps. I'll ask "How was your day?" rather than "Did you have a good day?" "How is the weather there?" versus "Is it beautiful?" This way the person I'm in conversation with can answer my question on their terms, rather than on mine.

The other day, a lady who had never taken my class before asked me how long I had been teaching for, "Do you love it?" she asked. "I am grateful for it," I said. She looked at me surprised, and then it seemed her enthusiasm level dropped.

For me, it's hard enough not to have expectations about what my day should look like and how I want to feel; I'm going to do my best not to have expectations about other people's days and feelings too.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Sparrows are Everywhere

Outside of my window the other night, for the longest time, was the most perfectly still sparrow. Mystified, I watched it for forever to see if it would move, and it didn't, until finally, it did.

Animal Speak talks about how persevering sparrows are, despite their many predators, they can hold their own: "For those of you who have a sparrow as a totem, look about you. Are you allowing others to take your dignity? Have you forgotten your own self-worth? [The sparrow] will awaken within you a new sense of dignity and self-worth, helping you to triumph in spite of outer circumstances."

It can be super hard not to let any of that what-other-people-think-of-you stuff get in your head; but it's a practice that is worth pursuing. You know, you know when you're doing your best and when you're not. You know when you're actually sick and need to call in to work and when you don't. Sparrows are everywhere. Each time you see one come back to you and what you think about you right now; that's what matters.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Mystical Parking

A few weeks ago, I found myself in downtown Santa Fe with only one option remaining: to parallel park on the left hand side of the street. Everyone in the whole world had come to Santa Fe for the holidays; in addition to this being the only place left to park, there was lots of traffic on the street, cars behind me and pedestrians everywhere. "I better make this quick," I thought, terrified, because I can't tell you the last time I parallel parked, and double that for on the left-hand side.

I took a deep, wide breath, decided to skip the fear, and listened. Sure enough, the voice inside my head guided me through the whole thing, "Stop. Reverse. Cut Right. Stop. Forward. Cut Left. Stop." I got it in one try.

Maybe my little parking story confirms for you that I'm totally out of my gourd, bat-shit crazy. For me, it confirms that I know. And so do you, kid. Quit the fear. Ask. Listen. You got this one.