Are you making decisions with your Head or Heart?

Are you making decisions with your head or heart??   I’ve been exploring this question in my own life and practice, especially over the last several months. The meditation class I guide over at Take Five Meditation is called Using your Body as a Compass. While discussing what this even means with the group, one of the questions that came up was, ‘How do we know when a sensation or feeling in our bodies is a gut response or anxiety or fear coming up instead?’ This is such a great inquiry and one that often explore within myself, students, and private clients. I would suspect that most of us have had a ‘gut feeling’ before. We may not always follow it but you likely have had the experience of just ‘KNOWING’ that something was the right choice…even if it made no logical sense and even if the people around you did not understand your choice AT ALL. Not all heart centered choices have to be illogical. But it IS important to connect more with our bodies so we can tune in, make the choices and trust they are the right ones for us. This may be the way you operate or you might be someone who lives with a lot of anxiety in your body. Perhaps you experience regular headaches or stomach aches? Maybe you second guess yourself all the time? Perhaps you ask other people for their opinions and trust them over your own? Or maybe when you have a figure something out, you tend to overthink, get foggy, shut down, or feel drained of energy? We’re not really taught...

Navigating the Seasons…inside and out!

It’s summer — a time of even more sun and more activity — if we’ve connected in with the energies of the winter and spring and rested and restored our bodies, moving into summer feels naturally expansive and energizing. Due to the nature of how most of us live, very active, and not necessarily in tune with the rhythms of the seasons, if we jump too fast into summer without having restored, we might hit some snags along the way. I talk a lot about slowing down and resting and one might wonder, well, how do you get anything done if you’re always moving slowly and resting?? Slowing down and resting is part of healing and resting an overactive nervous system.   And everyone is so different, we likely need different amounts of rest. It’s healing for your body and mind to find it’s own rhythm instead of trying to keep up with the pace of others around you or what you think you are supposed to be doing. It can feel like a huge exhale when you say ‘no’ and create some space just for yourself. Saying yes out of guilt or obligation and running around contributes to decreased immunity and energy. And when you are experiencing something particularly challenging emotionally, it can feel incredibly draining, and you may be more susceptible to sickness. Over time, this can also show up as more serious issues such as anxiety, depression and autoimmune issues. There are often so many layers to what is presenting itself on the surface. This may sound like it’s taking it a bit far… yet these...

Feeling saturated?

Feeling overwhelmed with the amount of information that is out there for consumption? Our brains can easily get overloaded with the pace and content of what we are hearing, seeing, and feeling. We barely have time to digest one thing before the next thing is calling our attention. There is a lot of chaos happening in the world, and simultaneously, we have much to navigate in our own personal daily lives.     When I’m feeling over saturated these days, my first stop is to head into nature. click here to read more.. It doesn’t have to be the wilderness. It can be a local park or even a patch of grass if that’s what you have available to you. Nature has a way of helping us to SLOW DOWN, to sync with a natural rhythm, to connect with something much larger than us. How can you stay informed about what is going on around you, take action in way that supports your values, AND at the same time, take care of yourself? When we sit on the ground, we remember that the earth has weathered many storms and through change and often destruction, there is not only survival, but the growth and beauty that we see every spring. SLOWING DOWN also helps us to connect in with what is truly bothering us underneath the surface. Yes, there are countless things that are disturbing these days though you may notice that certain things feel more challenging to you than others or elicit more of a reaction than something else. This is information. Anytime we experience a reactive thought or a feeling of wanting to push something away —  it gives us...

Emotional Alchemy

I’ve been playing a lot with this idea in my practice. I love the idea of transformation and integration. The idea that everything we experience, whether it is sad, disappointing or even traumatic can be transformed, transmuted and integrated to create a stronger version of the whole or of ourselves. For me, it speaks to the resiliency of humanity. Many of us have experienced loss, grief, or shock on some level in our lifetimes. We all process this differently. You may not have had the opportunity to process certain situations simply because of your own life circumstances. And, this skill is not exactly encouraged in our society. How often do you actually tell someone how you are truly doing when they ask you? We have so much coming at us between the news cycles, social media, and our daily work and family obligations that sometimes we barely have the bandwidth to navigate anything beyond that. It’s especially in these times that we need to resource ourselves by not only clearing our energy but building a reserve within us so we can be present to our lives, follow our path, and live our lives in alignment with our soul’s purpose. If you would like to open up to this type of transformation but you’re not quite sure how to navigate it, I am now offering in person and skype sessions to facilitate Emotional Alchemy. It’s a blend of intuitive, spiritual, and energy coaching to bring to light the unconscious and subconscious thoughts, feelings, and emotions that take up so much of your life force (prana) that you don’t have enough to offer yourself or your life’s vision. In each session, you will be guided to connect to your intuition and wisdom in order to feel...

From the inside out…

What we cultivate on the inside is directly reflected back to us on the outside. This could show up in the simplest of ways…when you are distracted, upset, frustrated, and all is seemingly going wrong – you also can’t find your keys, you spill your coffee, and things feel overwhelming. When you’re feeling clear on the inside, the outside world usually feels better. Those frustrating things don’t happen as often or if they do, your experience of them is vastly different. And isn’t the quality of your life based on your perception of everything around you? A reflection of your beliefs in physical form? Two people may be experiencing a very similar life situation but their perceptions are completely different. What accounts for these differences? It comes down to the structure of our thoughts, emotions, and belief systems. There is so much at play here. How we understand or experience something gives us a lot of information about our patterns of thought and energy. I will often use my external experiences to gauge what inner shifts I might need to focus on… Not in the sense that I need to be fixed or there is something wrong with me, but I start to consider, what can I clear so I can invite experiences into my life that reflect more of my true essence? Is there a boundary that is being crossed? Am I saying ‘yes’ when I really mean ‘no?’ Do I need to open up my understanding of a situation to help me see all the sides? Am I moving too fast or putting too much pressure on...

Going with the FLOW…

So, we hear this a lot – let it go, go with the flow, release what does not serve. These are great words and sound and feel really good – I say them often in my own yoga classes. The actual ‘doing’ of this is a bit more challenging. I was at the beach not long ago and was observing a horseshoe crab in his process of getting back to the ocean… or the ‘flow.’ I had never seen one moving before. He would make his way — slow and steady towards the water. You could see the waves coming up onto the beach, sometimes close to him, and in other moments, the waves were strong and would wash up over him. I just assumed he would be carried away back into the ocean by the power of the wave. I was surprised to notice that he was still there even after the powerful wave had washed over him. He seemed to dig in even more strongly when the wave came and would get turned around by resisting the wave. It would take him a bit longer to turn himself back around and start making his way towards the water again. I was fascinated by this behavior.   Why wouldn’t he just let the waves take him into the ocean?   Here was this powerful force, ready and wiling to sweep him to where he wanted to go and he would not let it happen. I realized how much I was actually struck by this. I could not stop watching. I shared with a friend that it seemed like...
New Year’s Intentions…

New Year’s Intentions…

It’s new year – an opportunity to RESET, create a resolution, or think differently about something. Making a resolution is pretty common practice. You hear people talking about it a little before the New Year and then declaring it in January. There are lots of articles and workshops on goal-setting and everyone seems to have an energy about making some kind of shift in their lives. I’ve never hear people talking about resolutions in July – even really even by March. I have wondered why this is – it’s likely due to a lot of different reasons. Maybe we forget, perhaps what we chose to shift is not really connected to something larger we want for ourselves, or we may get caught in the day to day and brush off our commitment we’ve made to ourselves because other things become a priority. Perhaps, it’s because in making a resolution, we are focused on what we don’t have or in ‘fixing’ something about ourselves.. It’s been a couple of years since I stopped identifying a resolution. I honestly can not even recall what some of them have been in the past. Over the last few years, I’ve chosen a word that would be my focus of the year. In the past, some of my words have been trust and community. For me, in choosing a word, it’s not that the essence of the word miraculously manifests in some easy way; however I have noticed that experiences will show up in my life related to this word. The unfolding of trust was really interesting. Over the course of that year, situations...

Grounding Tips For Travel

This is the season for heavy travel — you may already be on the road or packing at this very moment to take off for the holidays. Long periods of time in cars, planes, and trains can be taxing on the hips and the back. With potential delays and traffic, it’s not always easy on the nerves either.   Below are a few tips to help you ground and stay present while navigating all the randomness that can come with travel! BREATHE — Simple, I know… it’s amazing how often we forget how this simple act can shift our nervous system in miraculous ways. Take three long deep breaths with your feet firmly planted on the ground. Notice how far the breath is going. We don’t realize how often we hold our breath when stressed or we don’t allow the breath to move through our system. Let the belly expand. Let the breath move down to your root. Try it for a few minutes and notice what happens in your body and mind. YOGA – Once you’ve landed or arrived at your destination, try a simple yin pose like butterfly for 3-5 minutes or a restorative pose like legs up the wall. For butterfly, sit on the ground or at the edge of a blanket, place the soles of the feet together, and let the upper back round. If you have a back injury or pain, keep the back straight and don’t fold forward as much. Opening the hips can help your energy move downward. For legs up the wall, lay down with your buttocks close to the wall....

Taking Time for Self-Care

Earlier this year, I facilitated an online 28-day self-care journey. I was inspired to develop it while I lay on the acupuncture table receiving a treatment, which seems pretty fitting. In coming up with daily messages around self-care for 28 days, I realized how vast this topic is and the implication it can have on our well-being. It may seem self-indulgent to some — like there are so many things going on in the world, how or why is this important? Or to parents of young children, it may feel impossible to find the time. How can I possibly make time to do something for myself when I have an infant crying or children to feed, or make sure homework is done, and the list goes on and on… The truth is, we can’t really be fully present for life, relationships, work, or fun when we are feeling exhausted, depleted, stressed or worried. We can say things like, ‘it’s easier for someone else because they have help or they don’t have all the same responsibilities that I do.’ We then fall into the trap of comparing who has it better, worse, or easier.  And, that doesn’t really help or change anything. And, we are left still feeling exhausted, depleted, or unsatisfied in some way. Giving to, caring for, and attending to ourselves allow us to draw in the energy of receiving…when we can do this for ourselves, we more easily can receive from others. And of course, have more energy and desire to give! SO… I invite you to think of just ONE thing that you can do for...
Meditating Together

Meditating Together

As we get further into the holiday season, we tend to have an altered sense of time. The end of the year seems like it’s coming fast and we may wonder where parts of the year went. Our thoughts are moving quickly and it’s hard to stay present with what’s right in front of us. This may seem difficult to believe, but in my experience, regular meditation can actually shift our perception of time. Once you get into a regular practice, time somehow feels more expansive. I think it’s because you increase your capacity to be more present in each moment and therefore don’t feel like everything is a blur passing you by. I imagine if you’ve practiced yoga or have done any other activity that allows you to experience your own state of FLOW, then you have experienced an altered state of time as well. If you have trouble sitting on your own, I’d love to invite you to join me over the phone from time to time. Sign up here and you’ll receive an email at least a day ahead of time with the date, time, and a call in number so we can practice sitting in silence (with a little bit of guidance) together. I hope you’ll join me!   Sign up here! facebook Twitter Google+...
Manisha Tare, OTR/L MPH, RYT

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