There was once a woman married to a military man. After years of faithful service, the couple was looking forward to being full-time civilians again and starting the next chapter in their lives together (a house, a family … ).
Just when they thought they have everything figured out, the call came. She picked up the phone, knowing her husband was on the other end (hooray for caller ID on cell phones).
“It’s official: I’m deploying to Afghanistan for 12 months and we’re going in less than 4 months.”
It’s a good thing she was already sitting down. Staring blankly like a deer in headlights, her mind starts racing, but her husband’s voice quickly brings her back into the moment. They agreed to talk about everything when he got home that night, but her mind was already in overdrive, thinking about all the things they’d need to do over the next few months + what it would be like to spend 12 months by herself, day in and day out.
Guess what … the woman in the story is me + sh*t just got real around here!
(Note: keep reading for the BIG NEWS that I’ve been hinting about recently)
Whether it’s a major event or a minor inconvenience, change has a way of lighting a fire under our butt when we least expect it. At that point, we only have two choices: do nothing while we get a crispy rump + new stress zits OR we can graciously accept the spark + make the most of it.
Since change is going to happen in your world regardless of how you feel about it, how do you make the most of it? Pratipaksha Bhavanam, baby!
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Savasana. Corpse Pose. In layman’s terms: the part at the end of a Yoga class where you lie down and do nothing for awhile.
For most yogis, we love being able to lie down in Savasana after a physical asana practice + “let it all soak in.” While that may be the case, we’ve all had an unpleasant Savasana experience that reminds us just how important it is to “do nothing for awhile.”
One of my least favorite Savasana memories involves a song that featured drums that were slowly played faster and faster, accompanied by people who slowly chanted louder and louder. After 5 minutes, it felt like I was trying to relax in the middle of New York City’s Times Square. (Translation: not my idea of “active relaxation” by any definition!)
Since that unfortunate Savasana experience, I’ve had countless other pleasant times in Corpse Pose, but I’ve never let that one creep too far out of my mind. Now that I’m a Yoga teacher, I have an even greater understanding of just how important the entire experience of Savasana is + the music you play (or don’t play) can have a huge impact on that experience.
A good friend of mine from back in my San Francisco/Yoga Tree days, David Lurey, recently recorded an album with his wife called Savasana Serenades: Songs for Simplicity and Surrender … sounds like my kinda jams! (Side note: he also provided some very useful insights in my book, 27 Things to Know About Yoga)
[CLICK to keeping reading + find out how this album can change your practice!]
You’ve probably heard it spoken at the end of a Yoga class – as part of the closing words from the teacher or as students say goodbye to each other. May you’ve thought about using the word yourself, but you aren’t 100% sure what you are saying.
When I first started practicing Yoga and the teacher said it at the end of every class, I’d stay silent. My mind would race + I’d wonder if I was being rude or if I should say it out of courtesy … or maybe it was a word that invoked some crazy God-like being that I didn’t want to mess with (hey, I’m a worrier – my mind comes with with crazy stuff!).
What are we talking about?
The word Namaste.
Let’s start off with the great news: saying Namaste doesn’t invoke any God-like being + it is not a word of worship – hooray! (stay tuned for a more in-depth post about Yoga + religion very soon)
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