• being human,  writing

    A Blueprint for Daily Journaling

    Though I don’t journal every day I do try to pen something most days and morning pages are great. Some days. (I find them to be useful when I have a lot on my mind or am frustrated by something, but a bit of a waste of time on other days.) Continually seeking meaning behind my inner life, journal prompts help me get to the heart of what I think and feel. But after spending a lot of money on journal prompt books in the past that didn’t get used, I opted for a standard one-word list last year.  This one word leaves the prompt more open to interpretation than lengthy questions to answer. Some days I use it; others not, and I’ll use special prompts on special occasions: full moons, new moons, equinoxes, solstices, holidays, birthdays, various events, etc. If you’d like to adopt the practice, my list is included for you above. Happy Journaling and Happy New Year! May it be blessed beyond measure.

  • being human,  embodiment

    The 8 Limbs of Yoga: An Overview

    In preparation for leading a module of a brand new yoga teacher training this summer, I’m currently re-studying the Yoga Sutras. A short but very dense book, the Yoga Sutras is a text written over 2000 years ago that provides a philosophical framework for the practice of yoga. Thought to be authored by Patanjali, the sutras are 196 aphorisms (or ‘threads’) that weave together to form a broad, excellently structured guide to the physical practice of yoga. The text speaks to uniting the body and mind, helps us better understand the nature of our minds and outlines philosophical living on the path of yoga. In short, the Yoga Sutras details an 8 Limbed Path of Yoga which includes: Yamas: restraints, guides Ahimsa: nonharming Satya: truthfulness Asteya: nonstealing Brahmacharya: moderation Aparigraha: nongrasping Niyamas: practices, observances Saucha: purity Santosha: contentment Tapas: discipline Svadhyaya: self study Isvara Pranidhana: surrender Asana: postures Pranayama: breath retention/control Pratyahara: withdrawal of the senses Dharana: concentration Dhyana: meditation Samadhi: oneness with object of meditation or surrender This post serves as a basic introduction to the Yoga Sutras, a broad overview. Other posts will follow that will outline each of the eight limbs, including separate posts on each of the five yamas and niyamas. You…

  • being human,  embodiment

    Both And, Not Either Or

    This is a primary thought I’ve been thinking a lot lately – can seemingly unrelatable ideas and philosophies exist as truth simultaneously? I’ve come to the conclusion that they can. Both and, not either or. Specifically I’m reconciling a great many philosophies I’ve learned on my twenty+ year yoga journey with my renewed faith in Christianity. For the longest time, I’ve compartmentalized life. Things had to be either this way or that way. Opposing thoughts, ideas and systems couldn’t exist together. It had to be one way or the other – very black and white thinking, for sure. A product of my upbringing, I suppose. I have been a seeker my whole life. I’ve been in and out of every type of church imaginable, have tried to find myself through my yoga practice, meditation, writing, art, nature …. And the one thing that’s clear is that all beauty that exists in this world and all of the practices that lead me more deeply into myself and my true nature also bring me closer to God, closer to my spirit, closer to my divine nature, the nature that exists outside of time. It’s always been this way; I’ve just been too busy putting philosophies and practices…

  • being human,  writing

    Happy Happy 2020!

    New Year’s Eve and Day are excellent times to do reflective journaling and I find that specific prompts best help me to direct my thoughts. Here are three journal prompts you can use today to get 2020 off to a great start.

  • being human,  writing

    Year End Reflection Journaling

    Journaling is all about reflection: thinking about where you’ve been, where you’re going, what you’ve done well, what needs work, what you’ve learned, what you might continue to do, etc. And if you’re not a current journaler, a great time to get started is at year’s end. The benefits of journaling are endless. Here are just a few great reasons to start.  Ready to set your 2020 resolutions or intentions? That’s great, but research shows we’re more successful if we look back before forging ahead. On this almost last day of 2019, take stock of the current year before moving into 2020. Here are a few questions to consider on your look back. Journal about one or more of them. Is there anything you’d like to celebrate or acknowledge about the past year? What in 2019 are you most proud of? What setbacks occurred in the past year? How have those setbacks helped you grow? What did you learn? Did you have losses in the past year? How have you facilitated healing from those losses? What things did you do well in the past year and how did you grow from those experiences? Happy almost-2020! Here’s to appreciating where we’ve been because it’s the ultimate catalyst to…

  • being human

    Feelings Are Just Visitors

    “Feelings are just visitors. Let them come and go.”  ~Mooji Such a great reminder (for me and maybe you), and isn’t it funny how quickly feelings change? How we can be consumed one day and at peace the next? . We can feel our feelings without becoming them. Emotions aren’t good or bad in and of themselves. The thing is, we react and treat people often according to our feelings. Soooooo, it’s our job to notice our feelings, be with them, let them teach and guide us, as we work on ourselves and our mindsets. Lots of forces are at work in life. Personally, I’ve had some emotional upheaval this week. Deep primal pain that never seems to heal no matter the work I put in. So I’m learning patience (a g a i n .  s t i l l .)  and trust that the universe has my back, that life is unfolding in divine time, showing me what I’d never be able to see without the pain. Teaching me that life can still be beautiful, even with a hole in your heart. I’m also practicing kindness toward self so i can extend it to others, and boundaries because, well, I now see things…

  • being human

    Begin Again

    And that’s the magic of life. That we can always begin again. Night. Day. Despair. Renewal. This time of year is hard for a lot of us, me included. I drowned in pain for the last two years, but life ‘is for livin, man’ so I gotta keep goin … excited for new traditions with old friends, spending time with family and focusing on what’s important vs. what’s proper or expected of me. I think we get stuck, not realizing our options. Yes, life is as we choose it because of our ability to begin again. Over and over. On this Thanksgiving Eve, I am thankful for the ability to begin again. Blessings, y’all. Truly, from my heart to yours.

  • being human

    Rituals

    R I T U A L : a series of actions or type of behavior regularly and invariably followed by someone. What I am noticing is that my life is {becoming} a ritual. There are particular intentional things I do out of habit & repetition now and I wouldn’t call it routine because it’s much more sacred than that. As I get older, the most mundane becomes the most sacred. Yes, I am grateful and thankful for so many little things that are really big things. Do you have rituals you perform each day? Moments that are sacred, that connect you deeply to your Self? I’d love to hear about them! Please comment below. Happy Monday!

  • being human,  writing

    Journaling to Heal

    Our lives are living processes; we are human processes as much as anything. The only certainty is change. I reflect today about how things were a year ago. 2017 and 2018 were extremely hard years, and my goodness, did I fully participate in them. I didn’t run. I didn’t hide. I faced the ugly and the pain. I deepened my embodiment practices and I journaled and cried and journaled and cried some more. I practiced yoga and gratitude (as much as I could), I got outside a lot. But the single most impactful thing that facilitated healing was my writing/journaling practice. Seeing it all on a page in black and white made me face it, understand it, and gave me the ability to work with and to change what needed changed. Fast forward to today, 2019 has been a pretty good year. I’m ready to give back again regularly. (I stopped teaching regularly just before my mom’s passing because it was just too much, too personal, too of my heart.) Well, I’m excited to say I was accepted last week into an amazing program through the Center for Journal Therapy, allowing me to deepen my own practice and teach this healing art to others: a…

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