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...

Grounding for the FALL

This is one of my favorite topics, especially in the Fall. As we enter into late Fall and winter, we approach what’s called the vata time of year. According to the principles of Ayurveda, we each have characteristics that correlate to three constitutions (vata, pitta, & kapha) in different combinations. There is a whole science around these constitutions and diet and activity that are best suited for each one. Ideally, it’s great to have your pulses read by a practitioner to help you to understand what your specific constitution is, however, there is always google, where you can find an online dosha quiz to get you started. As you have a sense of what category you fall mostly into, there are many practices you might implement to help you stay balanced. As I have a propensity towards Vata characteristics, I really pay attention to what’s happening in my mind and body in the Fall. At this time of year, there is a tendency for heightened imbalance if you predominantly fall into this particular dosha. This imbalance may look like trouble sleeping, worrying, or generally feeling ungrounded or disconnected.   Below are a few ways that I use to stay grounded and calm during this entry into the colder weather.   Sitting on the grass. Yes, you can actually benefit from sitting on the grass and breathing deeply. Notice your breath as you inhale and follow it all the way down through the chest and belly. See how far you can follow the sensation down to the base of your spine to your pelvic floor. Connect with the sensation of...
Creating an INTENTIONAL morning ritual…

Creating an INTENTIONAL morning ritual…

My morning ritual has changed my outlook on life. This may sound dramatic, but it’s true. It took me a while to get to this place of deep appreciation for setting myself up for the day physically and mentally. But now that I have it, it’s very rare that I miss my morning practice. It’s become an act of self-love. I’ve dabbled with morning rituals and practices for many years. Sometimes it’s been a yoga practice, other times meditation, and at times, writing in a journal…they’ve all been helpful but didn’t always stick. If I fell off the routine over a day or two, it was difficult to get back on track. It definitely takes making a commitment and once you feel the effects, it’s more difficult not to continue than to fall off! Now, if something has prevented me from getting to my ‘morning’ ritual after I wake up, I will find time to do it sometime during the day. I don’t feel quite complete if I don’t get it to during the day. At the moment, I do some specific breathwork practices and a sitting meditation. Mornings are an ideal time to practice if you can find some quiet time and space to connect with yourself. Connecting with yourself does not look like going through a mental to-do list or checking your email. I HIGHLY recommend a gap of time between waking up and checking your phone. As your brain is waking up, before it’s fully awake, there is still time to dream and connect with your higher self before your ego self kicks in! This could...
Playing with  a Meditation Practice

Playing with a Meditation Practice

I often get questions after a yoga class or in my private work with clients around meditation. It’s all the rage… there are all kinds of studies around how it impacts our thoughts, our health, and our ability to focus. People seem to want to do it, but many are overwhelmed by the idea of a starting a meditation practice. There is a fear around sitting still for any amount of time in silence – this can feel scary, especially if it’s new for you. It’s just you and your thoughts and emotions. We usually employ many external distractions that keep us from experiencing our thoughts, which often feels safer than sitting quietly. I’ll be honest with you – it’s not always easy, but it doesn’t have to be as scary as you might imagine it to be.   What comes up for you when you consider sitting in 10 minutes of silence?    Do you feel a panic in your body? Do you feel calm? Does it make you want to turn to your phone or the TV? Do you get curious? So many different reactions. The voices in our head may seem louder when we become still, and we may not like what we hear. There is also the misconception that when you meditate, you’re trying to stop your thoughts. There are many ways to approach this and lots of religious and spiritual traditions that offer guidance around what it’s supposed to look and feel like. If you’re curious about meditation but stillness feels scary, here are a few options to get yourself started:   Try a walking meditation....
Can you BE with what arises?

Can you BE with what arises?

Can you simply BE with what arises? This can be SO challenging… We may sense an uncomfortable thought arising or a sensation in our bodies that reminds us of something unpleasant and we immediately try to shut it down. It might be a pang of loneliness; a feeling like we didn’t do something quite right or that someone is judging us…   These are common moments that we all experience during the day. Given what I do, I often get asked the question, “Do you get anxious?” I usually, jokingly, respond that it’s the reason I do the work I do… and in fact, that is the truth. As I learned what helped my own anxious feelings, I started to become more passionate about helping others with theirs. My mission is to help people feel at HOME in their bodies.   There are so many reasons we may experience these unsettled feelings in our system. They don’t always feel comfortable, and we can be left with the impression that we can’t manage our emotions or there is something wrong with us. When my body feels unsettled, I now know that it’s trying to tell me something…so, instead of ignoring it or distracting myself from the sensation, I’ve learned to SIT with it and BE with it. This did not happen overnight. It took many years of practice. My particular practices are yoga and meditation. Others have different practices to help them navigate these feelings. It’s really important to find what works for you.   When you notice these uncomfortable sensations arising, pause and pay attention to the actual physical sensation while noticing the story you...