Wednesday, November 21, 2012

{Happy Thanksgiving}

Hi everyone! I just wanted to say that I wish all of you a very happy, wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving. I was thinking about what all I'm grateful for and the list runs long. Starting from the basics-- my family, my health, my friends, the health of my family, yoga :), writing-- basically, all of the things that are in my life. But, I also started thinking about the journey. The things that have brought me to where I am right now. The bumps in the road, the people along the way, because a lot of times we don't know why things happen. We often don't know why things unfold the way we do, however, I think that things are always unfolding exactly as they should. Sometimes, we just have to get out of the way and let the universe work. This time last year, was a really rough one for my family. But, I am happy to say that a lot of healing has taken place and the year turned out to be a very big blessing. Life has all sorts of twists and unexpected turns, but sometimes those twists and unexpected turns are what open us up the most, and remind us, that things are always working just as they should. So this year I am especially grateful to be sitting at the table with my dad, my mom and my brother-- it's been a long haul, and now it's time to sit down, relax and enjoy each other.

I hope all of you get to relax some over Thanksgiving. Nourish all the parts the parts of you and enjoy!

P.S. I forgot to mention how thankful I am for my pup, Addie. She is my little heart and soul-- a soulmate to the core. I am forever grateful she came into my life! We're two peas in a pod! :)

Monday, November 19, 2012


It takes a lot of courage to step into our power, to not allow for anyone or anything to dim our light. This kind of power doesn't come from our ego, it comes from our core. The core of our being, that is rooting for us. That part that says, keep going, don't give up, you're worth it-- that kind of power. It isn't overbearing, it can even be quiet and subtle, however it is very strong. To tell you the truth, I have a hard time with it. A very hard time. My whole life I have been asking permission to exist. Is it okay if I do this? Live here? Date him? And now I am finding it even harder when it comes to starting a business. When we begin to step into ourselves and really start living our lives for who we are... there is often resistance. Our souls are telling us to keep going, but others might be telling us to get out of their way and off their turf. I, in this case, like to retreat. I stop where I am, tell myself at this point that I'm not good enough, and I leave. It might be the situation, it might be a job or a state or even a relationship. I have done this over and over again. While I was in Dallas over the weekend, Baron talked a lot about resistance. I think he probably said it almost every other word. It didn't really hit me until yesterday, that I have been feeling resistance in every part of my body. I have been holding on, trying to keep it all together, wanting it to be right, be perfect and instead of letting go and surrendering to the resistance, I have been creating more and more. I keep wanting to get in my car and drive back to Houston. I had a wonderful little yoga community there. One that was inspiring and it's a place I will always come back to-- it's my home studio. It's the place that birthed this idea, and gave me strength to take the leap. I keep thinking, why in my right mind would I ever leave it?? Well, now that I've taken the leap, I'm finding out that I've only just begun and that for the first time, I can't give up. I can't retreat, because I believe that if we've been given something incredible, our spirit must share it because that's what were here to do-- share ourselves, our experiences, our tools of life, our breath, our thoughts and our hearts with others. Otherwise, what's the point? I've always had resistance to Arkansas. Ever since I moved away to go off to college, I never thought I would come back here. That is until things out of my control began to happen. And the more yoga I did, the more I felt a need to go back to my roots, to the place where I once disconnected, the place where I feel like I lost my power, I felt the need to come back. I guess maybe I've had to come back to get it, however, I'm not entirely sure. What I am realizing is that the places in our lives that give us the most resistance, that's where we need to go, that's where we need to be, because those are the places of growth, of healing-- deep healing. We can't run away from our pain, or we will always run away from our joy. It is only in going through the pain, the resistance, sitting there until it doesn't exist any longer, that we will be free. Because on the other side of that resistance, of that wall, that block, that thing that always seems to be holding us back from ourselves, is who we truly are. I just wanted to share this, because often times when resistance comes up, we think it's a reflection of something wrong with us, but it's actually just a chance for us to step into our power to claim ourselves, our lives and who we are...

Robert Frost says, "The only way out is through," and as I think to myself, oh shit, he's right. My mind begins to develop a plan. I think, alright I'm just going to hold my breath, close my eyes, and hopefully I'll be through it soon. That's what I've always done. Hold my breath. In yoga, we say, the minute we want to come out of a pose is when it truly begins and the minute we start holding our breath is when we need to breathe the most. So, here we go, I am going to breathe my way through this resistance and you know what? I'm going to hold the pose. I'm making a commitment to myself right now, not to run, not give up, as I said in my last post... keep going... keep going... 

So, anytime the universe begins to show you resistance, just remember that for one thing, you are not alone, and another, it's just giving you the chance to claim your power. :) Don't be afraid to say yes, to push through and most of all to shine your light no matter what. 

image via pinterest

Thursday, November 15, 2012

When nothing goes right...

Go left.

Hi all! So, yesterday, I had one of those days, where everything seemingly went wrong. I feel like I taught the worst yoga class of my life, and could not say one thing right. Everyone was going different directions, I kept saying the wrong thing, the breaths were all messed up, it was one of those classes... that has nothing to do with preparation and everything to do with fear. As I wrote about yesterday, our best moments come from being in the moment and doing what we love, well during class yesterday, my fears turned to... "I want this to be a good class." While that's great and everything, it completely took me out of what was happening in the moment and drew my attention towards something so outside of myself that I lost it-- my words, my breath, everything. My brother later in the evening, sent me a you tube video, "Boom goes the Dynamite," to make me feel better. It is pretty hilarious, but only made me feel slightly worse. Let's just say someone could have said hi to me and I would have felt worse. I was in an all out and out tailspin of beating myself up. "I'm not good enough. That was terrible. What's wrong with me. Why did I ever think I could do this?" All of these things that yoga is not, I was-- in my ego, self-centered and giving myself a really hard time, all because of one 75 minute yoga class.

I started thinking to myself about all the times I've missed moments because of being really hard on myself. All the times that I think to myself that I have to be perfect in order to be loved. Flawless. Here's the thing... This is the most vulnerable I've ever been in my life. Last night all I wanted to do was pack a bag and run, hide in a cave somewhere and I can't tell you how many times I have done just that. Not literally, :) of course, but any time I feel like my vulnerabilities are coming out or I screw up in front of people, I quit, because I think to myself how dare I make mistakes. I thought to myself last night, that I don't know if I have the courage to make mistakes in front of people. I don't know if I have the courage to fail and still be okay... and if you read yesterdays post, it is all about this very thing-- having the courage to fail.

We all have fears-- and I think last night, I realized that I have always let them win. So, today, I woke up and I thought to myself, I am not going to let one class determine who I am. I would rather be f'ing up in front of everyone than not doing something I love, just because I'm afraid.

This weekend, I am heading to Dallas for a Baron Baptiste yoga conference. I am so excited to do some good yoga, rinse everything out and release it. Yesterday, gave me a great gift, and that was the decision to keep going no matter what... It was a point of resistance and I've had to surrender to the fact that I am not perfect. I am very human with all of my mistakes, insecurities and fears, and I am sure there will be more classes, that will feel like a wash, but for this moment, I am going to choose not to give up. Yoga gave me space on my mat to not be perfect--- it has been the only place where I've ever felt like I could let whatever come up, come up. It gave me permission to be okay, exactly where I am with exactly what I have to give at this moment. I hope to give my students the same thing. A place where it doesn't matter what happens, just don't give up on yourself and who you are.

Anyway, I just wanted to share that...

I hope all of you have a really wonderful day and weekend. Just remember, if you feel like you've ever just totally f'ed something up, it doesn't define you. Keep going... Keep going...

image via pinterest :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Bright & Early

Hello my dears. My posts have been scattered all over the place lately, which is a reflection of how my life looks right now. However, hopefully it will start to quiet down and I'll be in a groove eventually. For now it is what it is and I'm just trying to stay present and breathe my way through it. This transition has been a very different one for me. I am used to moving, so nothing new there, but when it comes to starting a business, I have definitely been thrown out of my comfort zone and into the land of vulnerability. When things that we do are a reflection of who we are, it gives a lot of room to take criticism personally. Or start thinking, "oh my goodness, what if I fail?" People aren't always going to identify with what you're trying to create. People need different things in their lives at different times in their lives, the thing that we all have to do, is listen to ourselves. Listen to that quiet voice, our gut, the very thing that guided us to the idea in the first place, and trust it with no attachment to the outcome. Throughout my yoga teacher training we read the Bhagavad Gita, if you haven't read it yet, it is wonderful. One of the main lessons throughout the story is letting go of the fruits of your labor. "Without concern for results, perform the necessary action; surrendering all attachments, accomplish life's highest good." 

As a continuation of the same thought, in Meditations from the Mat, it says, "Consider the moments when you were most effective in your life-- that night when you could have danced forever, the test you aced, the job you finished so well. By and large, when we look back on our best efforts we realize that they occur in moments of nonattachment to results. We are doing the thing because we love the thing itself. We are in the moment without thought of the next moment... See if letting go begins to make more sense when you are not defined by the results of your actions. Imagine that your life is meant to be a dance in which you are held in the embrace of all living beings."

I really thought this was a wonderful way to look at everything we put our efforts into. It relieves the pressure we place on ourselves, and the only thing we need to do, in anything that we do is release the outcome. I actually think that when people talk about taking risks and daring to fail, it is the same thing. The only way we ever dare to fail is when we release our attachment to the outcome-- not making it a defining part of ourselves and instead just being in the moment and doing what you love.

So for today, release the outcome. Wherever you put your efforts, do your best and let it go...  :) 

images via pinterest

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Weekend Inspirations

Hello my dears, I meant to post this on Friday, but no such luck. My friend Amie came in town for the weekend for a pre-pre yoga class in the new space. It was awesome! Although the space isn't completely finished, it was fun to get in there and do some yoga. I hope all of you had a really wonderful weekend. I've been thinking a lot about nourishment lately. How we nourish ourselves from the kind of people we're around to the kind of food we eat. When we're running around, working and being busy, sometimes it's easy to get really run-down, so this week I am all about taking some time for nourishment. Whether it's sitting around doing nothing, or eating good meals, do something to nourish yourself this week. Give yourself a little tender, lovin' care and then you have it to give to others. Lots of love to you all.

P.S. This soup looks pretty delicious from a Happy, Healthy, Long Life. Check out the recipe here

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Happy Hump Day!

Hi all! I hope you're having a great week. I always resist getting political on here, however I do hope everyone took the time to exercise their right to vote!

On another note... it's Wednesday, which means it's almost the weekend! Which means that it's almost time for the first class I'll teach in the new yoga studio here in Fayetteville. I am so excited. I can't wait to get in the space. Just standing in there brings a little more grounding energy to my life, along with some light and lots of loving kindness. It's one of those spaces that gives you space... to really let go, drop what you need to drop, so you can live your life with nothing holding you back. I often say that Yoga Ananda, gave me my life, it brought me back to myself. It allowed me to go deeply inward, to cry, to laugh, to freak out, to be really messy, to not be perfect, and to most of all enjoy who I am, right now at this very moment. I didn't need to accomplish more, be more, I was already enough. I am hoping to give my students all that has been given to me, because it's changed my life. It isn't about having the perfect pose or the perfect flexible body or any flexibility at all, it's about being open to the possibility of going deep into ourselves. Exploring who we are and giving ourselves permission to not have it all together. A lot of my friends have been telling me how "bad" they are at yoga, that they might not do very well. I never really know how to respond to this, because it's just a story we tell ourselves like any other story. It doesn't have to be true, and most likely it isn't. I always tell people that if you can breathe, you can do yoga. It's just about showing up and being present-- expecting nothing more than that. It's starting where you are at this exact moment, and letting that be enough. :) I've talked a lot about my neurosis lately, my meltdowns, yoga doesn't promise a perfect life without any ups and downs or "craziness," however it does help us breathe through those moments when everything seems to be crashing down around us. It gives us space in our minds, and in our hearts to expand, to truly love, to have compassion and to let go of the fear and step into the light. With that said, I feel very blessed to have the opportunity to teach and give it to others, because it's given me more than I ever anticipated. I hope you all have a great hump day.

image via POOLGA

Monday, November 5, 2012

Another week later...

Hi all, once again it has been (almost) a full week since my last post. Once I got to Arkansas it was a little bit of a whirlwind from moving in to trying to get settled. Needless to say, it has been a little exhausting. Actually, let me rephrase not a little but a lot. I came home to my parents' house today since it is only 45 minutes away (thank goodness), and when my mom saw me she said, "You look stressed," and with that I burst into tears. It can be hard moving-- adjusting to a new place, and I haven't been on a good steady schedule in a long time, not to mention I've been buried in my boxes. Even though, I have in some ways come back home, it feels very foreign to me. I haven't lived in Arkansas since I was in high school, and even then, I was in a different town. Anyway, I've been thinking a lot lately about creating space. Creating space in my life for new things, creating space in my body, creating space between my emotions and creating space between what Arkansas used to represent and what it represents now. I love this quote from Baron Baptiste that I saw on Soul Yoga's facebook, "Ultimately, yoga is about creating space: space within your spine; space within those secret pockets of tightness; space between your muscle fibers, bones, and joints; space between your doubts and beliefs; space between your emotions and reactions; and most important, space between your ears."

I am doing an 8-week meditation class on Sundays and when I wrote my intention yesterday, I wrote about creating space. As I try to slooow down, I am very thankful for how smoothly everything has gone and very thankful for all the help I've been given along the way. From my parents to my brother to friends who have stayed with me, taken me out, invited me to things, I am extremely thankful and feel very blessed to embark on a new adventure, while hopefully creating lots of space

image via pinterest