Fixing Problems Begins By Noticing Them

Fixing Problems Begins By Noticing Them

For six years my dog has been bounding into my garden, crushing my plants. For six years, I have been hollering at him. This pattern of ours had become so normal that I’d almost forgotten it was a problem I could solve. It turns out that a lot of our stress comes from little bursts of friction caused by our own behaviors and choices! The self-awareness that comes from yoga can go a long way toward smoothing these self-induced bumps in the road.

You Can Be the Sunshine for Another Person.

You Can Be the Sunshine for Another Person.

“You can be the sunshine for another person.” It is simple – love one another. It is also difficult. Love takes effort, courage, creativity, generosity, and trust. It is also the most empowering thing we can do. Sharing your light in this world does not dim your light at all. In fact, sharing your light actually makes your light shine brighter. It is in giving ourselves away that we receive the riches of this wonderful life we’re here to share.

How to Avoid Big, Messy, Destructive Reactions

How to Avoid Big, Messy, Destructive Reactions

A truck drove into a bridge in front of my house, inviting me to imagine how a yoga practice could have helped the driver avoid some of the mess he made. He might still have had the accident (nothing, not even yoga, makes us perfect). Yoga could have helped him minimize the swath of destruction caused by his reactions – which he and my neighbors would have appreciated very much.

What Message Is Your Body Language Sending?

What Message Is Your Body Language Sending?

An adolescent lack of self-awareness in a high school math class taught me the hard way about the power of body language when my teacher mistook my extreme discomfort as extreme indifference. Decades later my yoga practice furthered my understanding that mindful body language can help me convey to those around me that they are welcome, interesting, and valued.

The Freedom of Decluttering

The Freedom of Decluttering

Yoga philosophy teaches that letting go of extra “stuff” actually frees us. When we step back from our attachment to the stuff we have, the things we have no longer own us. Helping my son clean out his closet reminded me of the power of decluttering and how important it is to the quality of our lives to regularly clean out, pare down and straighten up our spaces, our days, and our minds.

The Body/Mind Connection

The Body/Mind Connection

What if you could choose your pace each day? What if you could choose to be calm? What if you could pause and allow hectic thoughts and chaotic feelings to settle? What if you could do all these things and more WHENEVER you felt out of kilter? If that sounds as good to you as it does to me, we’ve got a very good reason to add a few (more) minutes of meditation to our days.

Patience and Persistence Get You There

Patience and Persistence Get You There

One of the most transformative gifts of a yoga practice is the willingness to be patient with slow progress that often doesn’t look like progress at all as it weaves and circles and backtracks. This willingness allows us to survive and even thrive as we navigate grief, unexpected career changes, “long-haul” parenting, caring for a sick or dying loved one, the collapse of a marriage, the upheaval of a global pandemic, and so on. In times like these, it’s perfectly natural to hope that Google will have the answer or at least the phone number of an expert who has the answer. It’s understandable to want an easy fix when you’re worried or in pain. But the healing, creativity, perspective, strength, and resilience that we need in situations like these do not develop quickly. These are times for the patience and persistence of a yogi (or a tortoise).

Disagreeing Well

Disagreeing Well

In the heat of the moment of disagreement with my husband, my yoga practice provides a moment of clarity and space. While our frustration did not disappear immediately, our feelings of aloneness and isolation in the problem did. The reminder that I am part of a “we” held together by love (yoga’s promise of oneness or union) added hope that our best chance of navigating our challenging situation was together.