Mantra for March
By Laura Mills
Gloves, hats, and scarves in March? Maybe…but so late in March? With spring’s arrival, spring break approaching, and Passover and Easter right around the corner, the extra-frosty air and brutal wind seem quite out of place. Sure, we had a stretch of really mild weather back in December when we expected cold…now that the weather is “supposed” to be warming up, though, the cold just doesn’t seem to want to leave.
But yogis, take heart! 2013’s weather so far has much to teach us. The lingering cold invites us to continue our practice beyond our mats, as unexpected challenges like this lead us—if we’re open and accepting—into new ways of approaching life, into places where we need to return to our breath and revisit our intentions. We slow down, look inside ourselves, and observe what’s there at the present moment. Meanwhile, the spring kept at bay invites us to step up our practice of patience. Not the strained patience of a parent or teacher begging Mother Nature to ease up so the kids can play outside, but rather the patience of a seed just under the earth, frozen, dormant, waiting for the perfect moment. This is a patience that reaches deep beyond the choice of how to respond; it reaches into the realm of following nature’s cues, of letting nature lead. To the seed, when it’s time, it’s time.
Remember that, no matter how we perceive our weather and its changes, winter never just gives up and spring never just takes over from there. Instead, winter flows away, and spring flows in. Any given year—when it’s time, it’s time. The planet breathes and moves in a practice all its own; no matter how long it holds any pose, it always encourages us to join in.
One Way or Another
By Laura Mills
I was feeling great, better than ever, about yoga at the beginning of this year, for I had recently discovered deeper places in both my physical and mental practices. But over the next months a variety of ups and downs lured me away from my mat…and when I returned to a regular practice in July, the challenges I met overwhelmed me. Something I had thought as simple as a Basic Vinyasa, for example, actually HURT, and even Low Lunges wouldn’t happen without aches and wobbles. I nearly cried on my way home from my first class back, and as my “yoga mood” fell, so did my confidence.
Only after a few weeks did I see that before me lay a chance to live one of my favorite yogic teachings. I often theme my classes around it, in fact: the importance of accepting ourselves as we are. It’s a choice we make, when things change or don’t turn out the way we want, at that dynamic point between utter despair and genuine “Ah, whatever.”
I chose acceptance. Which didn’t mean I was any more thrilled to be sore after sequences that hadn’t challenged me a few months before, or that I laughed when I pulled out of Side Angle or toppled out of Tree. But it did mean that I no longer measured that day’s practice against that of any previous day. It also meant that with every breath I restored peace to my heart, and that when I rolled my mat at the end of practice I did so with self-love.
I choose acceptance, as many times as I possibly can when I need to make that choice.
Easy? No. But then most of life’s most worthwhile choices aren’t easy at all, are they?
By Laura Mills
Last week I attended a 75-minute class that left me with achy hips and legs 24 hours later. I loved the class—it was one of those fast-flowing, core-centered sweaty practices—but the challenge caught me a little off-guard and left me wincing with every step long after Savasana ended.
Every yogi encounters moments like these on the mat. We struggle where we usually don’t and think, “Wait, I can usually do this without a problem. What’s wrong?” One of the most difficult things to do—on the mat as well as off—is to remain kind to and accepting of ourselves as we are. Until about ten years ago, I was used to surpassing most challenges with determination and hard work. But the challenges grew more difficult than I could handle, and I broke down…which is when yoga, thankfully, provided a safe place within which I could struggle but still ultimately find peace. I learned that all challenges, large and small, on the mat and off, eventually either pass or deepen into something that serves.
I believe there’s no safer place for a little bit of struggle than a yoga mat. It’s okay; we never push to the point of pain, but we learn to gradually accept struggle as a teacher while we mindfully assess, align and adjust our way towards more positive tomorrows.
ACCEPTING TO BE INSTEAD OF MAKING A TO DO LIST
MARCH 19, 2011: This time of year as we transition from Winter to Spring our To Do Lists seem overstuffed. While we have more ways to make our lives easier through technology we insist on overwhelming ourselves on purpose by engineering these massive lists of stuff “we have to do” this Spring.
So today I invite you to create a TO BE list.
Say to yourself “how am I going TO BE no matter what gets done, or the outcome of this situation.”
When we focus on a TO BE List it is giving ourselves permission to do the hardest pose of all which is TO BE YOURSELF. And I can promise you that being yourself is the most important decision anyone can make. There is a serious paradigm shift that must take place especially if you’ve been used to trying to be who everyone else wants you to be. And as a result you will temporarily disappoint some people. Especially if you have been consumed on making your To Be Lists to prove your self-worth to other people.
To me the motivation for moving away from To Do Lists towards To Be is that it returns us to place where we can make peace with ourselves. That space of radical self-acceptance that demonstrates unconditional self-love. We are all a work in progress but that awareness of letting ourselves be who we are is vital to positive mental, emotional and spiritual health. Eckhart Tolle in the book A New Earth says it like this on page 184: "Accepting means you allow yourself to feel whatever it is you are feeling at that moment. It is part of the isness of the Now. You can't argue with what is. Well, you can, but if you do, you suffer."
This is isness of now is where we allow ourselves to surrender into being: no fighting, no resisting, no arguments. I can tell you during times of challenge the mat was the only place I felt like I could BE myself. And I mean my real self. And where I felt safe to laugh or cry or both at the same time. And the more we accept ourselves in this state of beingness the more we know how to accept others being themselves. It is a straightforward spiritual law. You cannot offer to others what you don’t practice for yourself. If you don’t have peace you can’t make peace, if you don’t love yourself you can’t really love someone else, if you don’t fully accept how amazing you are, you WILL NEVER accept others, if you don't know how To Be you won't allow others To Be either.
So today practice making a To Be List. And the first thing on that to be list is BE YOU! Love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia
PS If you need time off to help your To Be List then come on retreat with Alchemy Tours. Allow us to support you unconditionally. It will transform your life! www.alchemytours.com
YOU ARE SPECIAL
March 16, 2011. Yoga is a journey into our own uniqueness. It is a story of rediscovery for most of us. What with all the noise, busyness and stress of daily life we often lose track of what is most special about us. Fundamentally, when we practice I try to share that there is a difference between fitting the pose to the person or the person to the pose. I want you to feel like your best self, not trying to look like anyone else in the asana. For this reason I teach in a way that always emphasizes the person in the pose, whereby we Feel rather than worry about what we look like. Yes our bodies are our instrument to help us navigate more internally. However that journey into our essence (rasa) will look differently person by person on the outside.
We may share the same intentions related to turning on to the beauty and power within our hearts but how we get there is unique.
In fact everything about you is unique, not just your finger prints. The way you breath is part of your specialness, your nuances, your quirks and your individual expression create an alchemy that make you an Individual. You are different so why not celebrate that? Like the song goes, God made us funky. Be that. Be you. Be your best.
In this way yoga is non competitive (yeah we hear that yoga cliche a lot) but more importantly yoga is noncomparitive.
No one has your unique features, your exact background, your personality. Your essence is your most valuable gift. And my greatest teaching intention is that you rediscover or discover this sweetness of you and bring it forth into the other 23 hours off the mat day in and day out. It is in giving ourselves our own permission to be who we are that we by example give permission to everyone else to be themselves. Love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia
YOGA IS SCIENCE OF HAPPINESS!
OCTOBER 15TH, 2010 In simple words, Yoga is the science of happiness. We walk in stressed out, upset, negative and we leave the practice lighter, refreshed, more positive, in a nutshell, happier! I can't say that even after all these years, over 7,500 hours of teaching, and gosh who knows how many hours of practice that I fully understand the alchemy. It's like magic.
What I do get on some level both intellectual and emotional is that walking in we are like the decorator crab: collecting all these issues, stories, dramas and if we don't let something go we will literally suffocate under the weight of it all. Maybe we'll still be walking around but we certainly won't be happily human which is our birthright. The decorator crab does that: it collects all the stuff it finds and keeps putting it on its back until it can no longer swim to the surface and dies under the weight. The work we do on the mat is about personal growth. It is making space so we can is let go of what is negative.
Every day we have a chance to either have our lives serve as a WARNING or an EXAMPLE to others. The decorator crab is our warning. Let's learn something from it. The opinions or judgments we have of external stuff are just that - they do not impede our ability to remain happy. Happiness is an inside job. And the person responsible for being happy is YOU. Yoga teaches self-responsibilty, non-judgment and seriously radical self-acceptance by accepting the full spectrum of who we are (anger, worry, fear). The mat is a truth serum that helps us realize the truth and allows us to clear the space for living a more joyful life. And that life is moving forward, with us or without us.
"Happiness is neither virtue nor pleasure nor this thing nor that but simply growth. We are happy when we are growing" — W. B. Yeats
Yoga gets us UNSTUCK and then we can't help but grow and evolve. We not longer hold ourselves back from those things that crash our internal hard drive. And we leave the mat remembering how happy we really are. We start to celebrate the best parts of ourselves. And that, is why yoga is the science of happiness. Love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia
BREATH ACCEPTS YOUR IMPERFECTION
OCTOBER 14, 2010. The breath accepts us unconditionally. It is always all forgiving and accepting. Think about it, we ignore our breath, treat it with total disregard, prevent it from entering our body by holding our breath out when stressed, we behave casually towards it making little to no commitment. If we were a lover and the breath was our boyfriend, he'd leave us!
But not our breath. It lovingly accepts our human imperfection and gives us another chance, and another, and a million and more. There is a lesson here: when we breath we have another chance to try our best, We are not practicing to be perfect. We are practicing to make real, to realize the beauty of our humanness. Yoga philosophy helps us to see that we are perfectly imperfect. Eventually the more you practice becoming enamored with your breath you allow it to become your best teacher. And a shift happens.
As the breath accepts you, you start to accept yourself. Then as you practice this advanced yoga of self-acceptance you become more compassionate and forgiving of others, just as you are towards yourself. If you love yourself, you know how to love others unconditionally. And even when other people in your life make mistakes, you appreciate their imperfections and give them a second, third, millionth chance.
"You see the wider practice of yoga is not about arranging our life so that it is perfect and easy and non-challenging. Rather it is about using the discipline we find in asana practice (and in the other practices of yoga as well) to be able to remain “easy” in the midst of difficulty. That is the true measure of freedom. When we learn this then everything we do and everything we say becomes an “asana”, a position of body, mind and soul which requires the attention that brings us into the present." And in that present moment there is perfect presence.
Practice breathing on purpose today. But pranayama is not about belittling the breath or forcing or making it perfect. The literal translation is below. And it doesn't say anything about perfect. It says conscious, deliberate. So we try.
Tasmin sati svasa prasvasaho gati-viccheda pranayama
Pranayama is the conscious, deliberate regulation of the incoming and outgoing flow of breath replacing unconscious patterns of breathing. It is possible only after a reasonable mastery of asana practice.
- Patanjali Yoga Sutra 2.49
Our key breath learning in this practice was about chest breathing. I have included a quick summary for you below. The greater take away is how the breath accepts your imperfections, it knows you will forget and will welcome you back to try and in that trying may you be PRESENT. Love yourself, Love your day, Love your life! Silvia
This is probably the most common breathing pattern in today's stress-filled society. Also known as paradoxical breathing, it is a natural reflex when we are suddenly startled or frightened. We gasp, pull the abdomen in and breathe high into the chest. The lift of the abdomen and pelvic floor prevents the diaphragm from descending completely as we inhale. Chest breathers restrict breath movement in the abdomen, forcing it higher up into the chest, while shoulders move up and down.
Effect on mind/body
Chest breathers rely on weak upper body muscles. Thereby developing chronic tension in thoracic spine, shoulders and neck. Moreover, this tension is resistant to massage or any other relaxation therapy as it recapitulates the moment the person resumes chest breathing, which is an incredible 22,000 times a day! Since we can't breathe in fully, we can't breathe out fully also. So we resort to breathing more quickly to make up for lack of oxygen. Scarier still is the fact that it sets the stage for an even more serious breathing problem: hyperventilation. Chest breathers normally sit on the edge of their seats and exude anticipation in their entire bearing. They never seem to have enough time to do all the tasks they set out on and often experience a chronic, free-floating state of anxiety. Scientific evidence now points to the connection between chest breathing, heart disease and high blood pressure.
Place one hand on your abdomen and the other on your chest. Observe the movement of both. If both your shoulders and chest are rising, you are probably not a chest breather. A chest breather suppresses breath in the lower abdomen, forcing it to move higher up into the body.
How to let go
Relax your shoulders and upper back. Consciously follow normal breathing pattern. Mentally assess yourself without judgement. Ground yourself in the present.
(If you want to explore deeper learnings join me on retreat, yoga vacation www.silviamordini.com or www.alchemytours.com)
GRATITUDE FOR TEACHER TRAINEES
OCTOBER 13, 2010. So today I begin my last Teacher Training at TBY. What an amazing 9 groups of trainees I've had the pleasure of teaching all these years! I've learned more from them than they could possibly have learned from me.
And I have slowly turned over the program little by little to other great local teachers to carry on this legacy. Rachel Dewan is co teaching this Fall program with me and Mary Scudella and Mara Campbell are taking over the Winter program that starts in January runs until July.
In the words of the Grateful Dead, "What a long strange trip its been."
And me? Well I will still be teaching teachers. It is my passion, my life's mission and I will do so remotely, virtually and in person in various locations that open their hearts up to me. I trust my voice will still be heard in helping nurture other teachers to find their own voices. It was never about fitting a teacher trainee into a set mold, it was always about the organic nature of evolution and individual transformation. And it still is.
So stay tuned, if you live local sign up for Mary and Mara or Rachel next Fall. And if you want to enjoy a destination Teacher Training then join me in 2011 for some fantastic spiritual adventuring! Love yourself, love your day, love your life, Silvia
PS What have I learned in 9 teacher trainings? Be Yourself. The best teachers remain students. God made you funky. (obviously the 200 hours together went into more detail....)
AFRAID OF BEING AFRAID
SEPTEMBER 12, 2010. Some years back I as talking about how yoga helps us to face our fears (remember that first time doing crow pose or kicking up into a handstand or feeling the sensation of pigeon or even just standing still in mountain pose). After class a student came up and told me I should never talk about fear and if I do she will never come back to class. Guess how that made me feel? Yup, I was totally afraid of her. I was afraid of what she'd say or do or tell people and I was afraid of what if one day I forget and she was in class and I said the word what would she do. I resolved not to talk about Fear at that point because I WAS AFRAID OF BEING AFRAID. That went on for over a year. Then the more spiritual reading I did and the more Anusara Yoga became part of my life I realized there was something inauthentic about denying fear. Anusara teaches us to embrace the full spectrum of who we are, even when we are afraid.
Mariann Williamson says, "Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn. The spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear and prejudices and the acceptance of love back in our hearts." So first thing we do when we come to class is as Baron Baptiste says, "drop everything you know." From there we heed the sage advice of Yoda in Star Wars, "YOU MUST UNLEARN WHAT YOU HAVE LEARNED."
Interesting enough this works hand in hand with what positive psychologist (and favorite Harvard professor) Tal Ben-Shahar's lectures talk about that drills down into this: "to be a happier person give yourself permission to be HUMAN." Otherwise when we suppress what we feel it creates more problems. This is what "he refers to as ironic processing, which promises that suppressing an emotion will only ensure its clear announcement later." Yoga is the science of happiness and encourages us to practice unconditional love for ourselves and what we practice on our own lives we know how to share with others. You can't teach what you don't know. You can't live what you don't know. In great part the reason I teach is to be that spark to explain how yoga works so you too don't stay stuck in non-life affirming qualities of your humanness and realize that once you accept who you are, you can unlearn what you know and expand into your happiest life ever. I want that for me, and I really want that for you. Love yourself, love your day, lover your life! Silvia
YOU ARE LIKE A DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH
May 22, 2010, The pressure life brings us gets a bum rap. It’s not all bad. Actually, that’s the way diamonds are formed. They become refined through really intense pressure and heat. The end result is magnificent! In yoga the same thing takes place with our physical selves and energetic selves as well. This process of cleansing through the letting go old pain brings us back to our most beautiful. We engage some pressure to create the heat to transform the old heaviness into radiant strength.
We move from being a diamond in the rough where we are cut up in limited self-belief to a state of being diamond like where we believe in our highest potentiality, we believe in the impossibility of things! This achieved lovingly and safely through the asana and pranayama. It is known as ORVAJRA DEHA, or “diamond body.”
Every pose, every breath connects us to who we really are. We feel more, understand better and think more clearly. It helps us to be our real selves, our best selves. The light is shed from the inside out to see that we were limiting our perceptions of who we are by doing things like feeling ashamed, embarrassed, jealous, angry, stressed. And as each pose progresses to take us deeper we create heat and the old stories drop away and we find ourselves shining out. Some of the best ways to polish the diamond in the rough that we are is to practice forgiveness and compassion towards ourselves, remembering that at the heart of yoga the highest practice leads to ultimate self-acceptance.
And the more you radiate the brighter you are then the more light you bring into the world to those around you. Your luminescent quality inspires all others to shine out and discover their best diamond selves too! Can you imagine a world where we all get to be ourselves and radiate love and happiness? Well, yoga teaches that day is now, that world is here inside each and every one of us! May you come to see all your challenges as means to reveal your true beauty. Love to you, Silvia
FOURTH AGREEMENT DO YOUR BEST TO ENJOY LIFE
APRIL 9, 2010: The fourth agreement is ALWAYS DO YOUR BEST. Don Miguel Ruiz says, "Under any circumstance, always do your best, no more and no less. But keep in mind that your best is never going to be the same from one moment to the next. Everything is alive and changing all the time, so your best will sometimes be high quality and other times it will not be as good. When you wake up refreshed and energized in the morning , your best will be better than when you are tired. Regardless of the quality keep doing your best."
That's the part I love the most that our best requires a constant sensitive adjustment. That it is different moment to moment. This also correlates to yoga sutra of:
Sthira Sukum Asanam. (Effortless effort)
This fundamental Yoga Sutra of Pantanjali has many interpretations one of which is that the asana/poses should be steady and comfortable. That we find an effortless in life whereby the pose we take (walking, talking, sitting, driving) be so elegant that the body is made more easy and attractive to the flow of prana/breath. This practice of graceful effort means that some days it might be more difficult and some days it's easy, just like life is filled with joyousness and setbacks. But the point is to keep going. Ruiz puts it like this, "If you try too hard to do more than your best, you will spend more energy than is needed and in the end your best will not be enough. When you overdo, you deplete your body and go against yourself and it will take longer to accomplish your goal. But if you do less than your best, you subject yourself to frustrations, self-judgement, guilt and regret."
Remember the Story of guy that goes to a Master asks about how long must he meditate to "transcend" or become happier, more enlightened. The most important lesson from this was when Ruiz writes, "You are not here to sacrifice your joy or your life. You are here to live, to be happy and to love. If you can do your best in two hours of meditation, but you spend 8 instead you will grow tired miss the point and won't enjoy your life."
You see how yogic this is, that we manage our energies all to cultivate our own best happiness right now, right here in the present moment. And as part of this we go easy on ourselves never to a point of exhaustion whereby we might "miss the point" of life. Some say the highest practice of yoga is this form of radical self-acceptance, "When you do your best you learn to accept yourself. Learning from your mistakes means you practice, look honestly at the results and keep practicing."
"The best way to say thank you God is be letting go of the past and living in the present moment, right here and now. When you let go of the past you allow yourself to be fully alive in the present moment. Letting go of the past means you can enjoy the dream that is happening right now." Embrace your life. Let yoga help you learn how to surrender to the happiest life ever!
"You were born with the right to be happy. You were born with the right to love, to enjoy and to share your love. You are alive, so take your life and enjoy it. We don't need to know or prove anything. Just to be, to take a risk and enjoy your life, is all that matters." Love to you all. Courage to you all to JUST BE, Silvia
FEAR, LOVE AND ANAPANASATI
FEBRUARY 22, 2010: We focused tonight on the breathing practice of Anapanasati. This is usually the very first breathing technique we learn in yoga. This ability to watch our breath and practice mindful self observation. As we watch ourselves we gain insight into whether we are breathing in a way that shows us fearful or peaceful. We then can link this to how we are living our lives. Are we judging ourselves each moment? Or is it possible simply to be with your life, feel your breath, without needing to change it. Can you use the practice of mindfulness breathing to create a self-acceptance for yourself and let go of the fears you might have? Can you ultimately choose to view your thoughts, your breath, your actions through a prism of love without so many labels of good enough or not good enough but just be. I know you can, this practice if you let it will help you achieve the hardest pose of all, self-love. Love and courage to you, Silvia
Watch for the judgmental mind that discounts small movements as insignificant or unimportant
or the ambitious mind that jumps in to tell you to make your breath bigger or deeper,
or labels your perceptions as good or bad in order to arrive at a conclusion.
- Donna Farhi
DEFINITION: Anapana means breathing. The full name of this technique is anapanasati or mindfulness breathing.
PURPOSE: The primary purpose of this breathing concept is to gather more specific information about one's breathing patterns, rhythm, and intelligence. Simply observing the natural breath, do not breathe in a certain way or make your breath imposing. It is helpful to enter this inquiry with curiosity and inquisitiveness rather than a desire to get it right. This technique will calm your mind and keep you in the present preventing thoughts from stimulating stress. Be watchful. Thoughts will sneak up on you. When you catch yourself drifting toward thoughts, you must bring yourself back to natural breathing.
TECHNIQUE: Lay on your back or sit in any comfortable position, place one hand on the belly and the other on the chest or place both hands on the belly with the fingertips below the navel. After observing the location of the breath, you may move the arms to the side with the palms facing up.
Location of the Breath: Where is the movement of the breath most noticeable? In the lower part of my body or in the upper part?
Origin of the Breath: Where does the movement of the breath begin? Just as an earthquake has an epicenter that scientists can locate, your breath has an epicenter.
Frequency of the Breath: Is your breath fast or slow or somewhere in between? Count the number of breaths per minute or if possible have a friend count them for you. Twelve to fourteen breaths per minute is considered a normal rate.
Phrasing of the Breath: Is there a noticeable difference between the length of your inhalation and exhalation? Are they equal?
Texture of the Breath: Is the texture of your breath smooth and even or is it jerky and uneven?
Depth of the Breath: Does the breath feel deep or shallow?
Quality of the Breath: If you could describe the quality of your breath what word or words would you use? Is it pneumatic, labored, billowing?...Let descriptive worlds or images arise without layering them in any way. Do you have any images that you associate with your breathing?
Reference: Donna Farhi, The Breathing Book
All of this is accomplished through mindfulness and conscious breathing. When you use your breath on purpose and breath as you, you gain control of your emotions, your harness the power of your mind and direct your 60,000 daily thoughts towards what you need from the inside to live happier and more peacefully. Each pose then is an opportunity to listen to our body. We can ask ourselves in any pose “How can I use this pose to be more accepting of myself, How can I use this pose to practice being less reactive in difficult situations, How can I use this pose to celebrate my life, How can I use this pose to love myself more?”
When we live life trying to be what everyone else wants us to be we lose who we really are. Then the grumbling mind tends to get bogged down in its own weariness of trying to keep up. But if we discover ourselves our personal story shines out and through our acceptance and expansion of ourselves we give permission to everyone around us to be themselves. May this practice bring the inner yoga alive in you! As Rumi writes, “I was dead, then alive, weeping then laughing. The power of love came into me!” May you love yourself more, love your day more, love your life more! Silvia
SELF-ACCEPTANCE BY GUEST BLOGGER MARA CAMPBELL
TRUE SELF IS OUR BEST SELF
OCTOBER 23, 2009: It is a Spiritual Truth that TRUE HAPPINESS REQUIRES HONEST SELF-REFLECTION. THE MORE HONEST YOU ARE WITH YOURSELF, THE GREATER HAPPINESS YOU WILL EXPERIENCE. So let’s start by simply blessing ourselves for being present enough to give thanks for the opportunity to be ourselves. Enjoy these words of John O’Donohue.
I give thanks for arriving
Safely to a new dawn,
For the gift of eyes
To see the world
The gift of mind
To feel at home
In my life
I often say in class the hardest pose we do is being ourselves. The body does not lie so in a pose on the mat its just us, we have no one to point fingers at we can’t make excuses there is nowhere to run. We have to come home to our lives in that moment. And whether its hard or easy is irrelevant. The greater purpose is through the breathing and postures are you learning how to be honest with what you are feeling instead of denying it. The sooner we are courageous enough to be our TRUE SELVES then this inherently is being our BEST SELVES. And the more we are ourselves the greater happiness we will experience. Start today, love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia
A great exercise I offer you from Robert Holden who wrote Be Happy is this:
- Self-Awareness. You will always feel like something is missing, you will always feel inadequate until you learn to know yourself better. Life isn’t about getting more it is about being more of who you really are. Authenticity is the perfect antidote to split desires and to negative comparison. And the more real you are with yourself, the more you will realize what you really want. This is important because as Eric Hoofer put it “You can never get enough of what you don’t need to make you happy.”
- Self-Acceptance. For as long as you do not accept yourself, you will always want more than you have. If you will not accept that happiness is your true nature, you will search for happiness for the rest of your days. And if by chance you discover some happiness, you will not let yourself enjoy it unless you have learned to accept yourself. The fact is, more of anything or everything will not be enough until you choose to be happy.
- Self-Accountability. If you think something is missing from your life, it is probably you. The idea that something is missing in your life, in your relationships, in your work is a projection. This projection is based on the fact that you are not fully present. True happiness requires you to participate fully in your life now. Do a self-inventory based on three questions: 1.) What am I not being? 2.) What am I not giving? 3.) What am I not receiving?
EMBRACE YOUR TRUTH OM NAMO NARAYANAYA
OM NAMO NARAYANAYA
OM NAMO NARAYANAYA
This mantra is said to take the sayer to sublime spiritual realms where spiritual questions are answered and great TRUTHS are revealed. The word for truth in Sanskrit is Satya. In
We started class in seated meditation and I sang this mantra so we could all feel the vibration and set the tone for using the practice to delve deeper into revealing our unique truths. I know this concept is not “new” to you. I too grew up with the idea of honesty. But the way I learned it was fear based this presentation of Don’t Lie or you will get into terrible trouble, no one will like you and you will be sent to a horrible place. As a kid this gave me nightmares and I can tell you I was a very good kid but I didn’t really need to be scared into embracing honesty.
So as an adult in my more mature spiritual practice I often dedicate my meditation to the basic TRUTH of my life. I sit and attempt to “get real” with myself. It started years ago with just the question “what is real” as I tried to figure out where in my life I might downplay things or where I might overexaggerate stuff. Through this observation I found the middle path, the truth. And each day along this path I say to myself “I AM STILL LEARNING” these are the words Michelengelo spoke at the age of 87 and my friend Liz gave me to wear as a bracelet on my left wrist, the receiving side of the body.
This idea of still learning has helped me hold myself more gently. It has allowed me to be more honest about who I am, what I need, what I feel. It helps me to look at old mistakes, times of self-neglect and even old hurts so I can move forward more honestly but always with love and more love. Fearful intentions don’t work for me.
Spiritual Truth: TRUE HAPPINESS REQUIRES HONEST SELF-REFLECTION. THE MORE HONEST YOU ARE WITH YOURSELF, THE GREATER HAPPINESS YOU WILL EXPERIENCE.
A great exercise I offer you from Robert Holden who wrote Be Happy is this:
- Self-Awareness. You will always feel like something is missing, you will always feel inadequate until you learn to know yourself better. Life isn’t about getting more it is about being more of who you really are. Authenticity is the perfect antidote to split desires and to negative comparison. And the more real you are with yourself, the more you will realize what you really want. This is important because as Eric Hoffer put it “You can never get enough of what you don’t need to make you happy.”
- Self-Acceptance. For as long as you do not accept yourself, you will always want more than you have. If you will not accept that happiness is your true nature, you will search for happiness for the rest of your days. And if by chance you discover some happiness, you will not let yourself enjoy it unless you have learned to accept yourself. The fact is, more of anything or everything will not be enough until you choose to be happy.
- Self-Accountability. If you think something is missing from your life, it is probably you. The idea that something is missing in your life, in your relationships, in your work is a projection. This projection is based on the fact that you are not fully present. True happiness requires you to participate fully in your life now. Do a self-inventory based on three questions:
1.) What am I not being?
2.) What am I not giving?
3.) What am I not receiving?
So today my dear friends please take time to reflect on your own truth and through this may you find the greatest happiness within your heart! Let’s imagine a world where everyone is living as themselves and that world is bright with no more war or conflict just pure truth and love. Sat Nam (in truth and light), Silvia
GETTING GROUNDED IN SELF-ACCEPTANCE
SEPTEMBER 3, 2009: Grounding into 1st Chakra
I dedicate this class to all those friends, students and unknown hearts that are feeling uprooted or ungrounded in life right now. To you I say, “I know” I’ve been there. And by learning more about the power of the Root Chakra, which is our foundation for life, we can regain our sense of security, internal power and stability. You can believe in your choices with greater conviction once more. Most of all to me the root chakra reminds us to accept the TRUTH of who we are. This truth of our own specialness and uniqueness keeps us connected to the present moment. Otherwise when we lose our center it is so often because we are trying to be what someone else wants us to be and as a result we feel unstable.
We used a series of poses to till the soil of our bodies warming them up so we could be in our own skin. Inside ourselves we find an inner security and stillness. A quiet peace that is unrelated to circumstance or others opinions. I mentioned how I love photography and collect cameras. That the 1st chakra when balanced brings us clarity no different than holding a camera, setting up the angle, moving yourself or the subject around and then refining the focus of the picture by growing still. This crystal clear clarity on our decisions is based in strongly rooted self-worth. If you know who you truly are then taking action on your personal pilgrimage towards what’s important to you is a whole lot easier.
I guess all that I want any of us to do is be present to the loveliness of our lives and claim our place in the world. Through yoga you can regain your stable center and assert yourself with lovingkindess: strong get gentle. Join me on the mat to experience more of the root chakra. Wishing you your best courage! Silvia
AUGUST 23, 2009:
Gratitude is the state of mind of thankfulness.
Every day I practice some form of gratitude meditation. I just start off saying to myself inside my breath I am grateful for…and then as part of a stream of consciousness I let it flow from my heart. It has taken years to find the ease in this flow. For a long time I would over think it, or rank some things as less or more meaningful than others. Finally I realized through spiritual practice Gratitude is a constant state of being. It is a way of seeing the world and there is no ranking necessary, all things big and small matter equally when practicing gratitude.
Gratitude increases our appreciation for life.
So many days it starts by being grateful for my life, for my breath. This awareness that just be breathing we won the lotto today! That not everyone in the world was chosen to breath on this day. That’s pretty powerful eye opener. When I was at the
Gratitude is a form of acceptance.
Just as we are grateful for our families the more gratitude we experience for others happiness the more our gratitude grows. Stephen Levine says “As gratitude is cultivated, we experience an increase in our sympathetic joy, our happiness at another’s happiness (this growing sense of gratitude for whatever happiness, great or small, that comes to those around us.)” Through gratitude we accept the good in all.
Gratitude is a return to balance
It brings balance to those parts of ourselves that are disconnected, or attached to suffering. Gratitude changes our attitude and helps us to stop feeling victimized by life. This is Yoga Sutras Chapter 2.33 “When presented with negative thoughts or feelings cultivate an opposite, elevated attitude. This is Pratipaksha Bhavana.” If feeling down, hopeless, worried, doubtful then to bring the see saw of our life back into balance we practice gratitude.
Gratitude is love. Try this easy to remember breath meditation
Inhale: I welcome happiness,
Exhale: I am grateful
Inhale: I welcome inspiration
Exhale: I am grateful
Inhale: I welcome love
Exhale: I am grateful
From the Book A Year to Live by Stephen Levine – Essential Gratitude Meditation
“How very fortunate we are to have this moment in this body with some intuitive acknowledgement of that which goes beyond our understanding.
Even with the difficulties, even with the confusion, how blessed we are to be here.
Grateful for the kindness of loved ones. Grateful for the moments of joy. Grateful for the clarity that arises even during pain. Grateful for the blessings, great and small. Grateful that our pain is no greater than it is.
Thankful for our Great Heart and the capacity to become whole.
Thankful to be living in a world and time, in which the value of compassion cannot be overlooked.
Grateful that among the billions now on this planet our hearts are so drawn by the possibility of liberation. Grateful for the path that has brought us each so far. Grateful for the love and the grace the spontaneously emerge from our true heart.
Grateful for our inheritance of happiness, that joy is our birthright.
Grateful for the sense of presence.
Gratitude for simply being.
Gratitude for the beneficent process.”
ENJOYING YOUR LIFE MORE BE PRESENT
AUGUST 15th, 2009:
“Happiness Prayer” (From the book Be Happy by Robert Holden)
So far today I’ve done all right.
I haven’t gossiped. I haven’t lost my temper.
I haven’t been greedy, moody, nasty, selfish or narcissistic.
And I’m really glad about that.
But in a few minutes, God, I’m going to get out of bed,
And from then on I’m going to need a lot more help.
We have another 24 brand new hours before us says Thich Nhat Hanh! And again a choice to choose happiness. The more you choose happiness the more you see the potential for happiness that is all around you. You find happiness because you choose happiness. Emerson said words to the effect that everyday when we make our bed we have a choice to make up our minds about the kind of day we’re going to have.
Yes, in every moment there is a choice, sometimes our choice is to choose happiness other times our choices block happiness. The good news is that the more you choose happiness the easier it gets. But how?
Could it be that easy? Yesssss! Begin now by asking yourself: How can I enjoy this moment?
The more you are wiling to enjoy the moment the more beautiful each moment of your life will be. Essentially you are choosing life. And Jon Kabat Zinn says that the more you say yes to life, the more life will say yes to you! And if you think about it life only happens one little moment at a time. So put yourself into the smallest things you do.
The bigger goal is simply to SHOW UP and BE PRESENT. Be authentic. Be you! (Or as Russell Simmons puts it in the title of his yoga inspired book “DO YOU”)
So starting in this moment remember to enjoy the miracle of existence today, appreciate your breath and in that breath choose happiness. Love you all, Silvia
CHANGE WITH GRACE
Folks often ask me how the practice has changed me over this last 15 years of practice and over 7,000 hours of Teaching Yoga and I think it has helped me be more patient with changes in life. I realized that getting upset at those changes I cannot control only hurt me and was a waste of energy. Instead of I have focused on opening my heart to the fullness of life and I have grown more calm and content as a result. My mind became more flexible to new things, people and situations.
I hope you will join me on the mat to use this practice as your personal laboratory to safely test out for yourself changes in the way you respond to stuff. Like responding to poses with kindness, non-reactiveness, compassion, non-judgement, and ultimately acceptance. This then translates into how you live, interact and relate to your external world. Know that without a doubt your time on the mat is bringing about the peace we all aspire to - you are changing the world! Or as Michael Franti (Power to the Peaceful, Spearhead) says "One thing that yoga has taught me is that the rate at which the world changes is exactly the rate at which I change"
I realize embracing change is difficult. So I will include a gentle practice to help you from this day forward when you need to find your center and be more graceful with the changes taking place in your life. Wishing you all the courage you need to respond even to the smallest change with patience, love and courage. Love and light, Silvia
CLASS PLAN LEVEL 1-2: AUGUST 10TH, 2009
Seated easy pose, pranayama of alternate nostril breathing
Supine Cobbler over blanket roll
Cobbler mini core cultivation
Supine upward facing twist
Supine downward facing twist on blanket roll
Bharavajrasana seated twist and gentle flow of arms
Ardha Matsyendrasana seated twist
Seated baby cradle of leg
Seated Cobbler, twist
(Side two as above)
Prasarita (standing wide legged forward fold)
Warrior 2, Triangle, Side Angle Pose, Triangle, Reverse Warrior 2 (right side)
Warrior 2, Triangle, Side Angle Pose, Triangle, Reverse Warrior 2 (left side)
Sun Salutation A slow
Half Warrior 2, Half Triangle, Half Side Angle, Half Triangle, Half Reverse Warrior 2 (right side)
Kneeling Side Plank
Parsva Vasistasana 2
Fallen Warrior (downward facing resting)
Pigeon (with shoulder opener more resting)
Dog and rest before side 2
CLOSING WAVES: Done in class, if you want a copy just email me email@example.com
CONTENT TO BE YOURSELF: THE HARDEST YOGA POSE OF ALL
AUGUST 5TH, 2009: A friend gave to me not too long ago a sweet little book that is powerful beyond measure. I have since purchased many copies to give as gifts to friends. The book is "The Way to Love" and contains the Anthony de Mello's final thoughts as he grapples with the ulimate question of love. In 31 meditations he implores his readers to break through illusion, the great obstacle to love. "love springs from awareness, " de Mello insists, saying that it is only when we see others as they are that we can begin to really love. This task, however, is not easy. "The most painful act," he continues "is the act of seeing. But is in that act of seeing that love is born."
Today I meditated on the HARDEST YOGA POSE, being ourselves.
de Mello speaks to this as he offers us these words "Compare the serene and simple splendor of a rose in bloom with the tensions and restlessness of your life. The rose has a gift that you lack: It is perfectly content to be itself. It has not been programmed from birth, as you have been, to be dissatisfied with itself, so it has not the slightest urge to be anything other than it is. That is why it posseses grace and absense of inner conflict. You are always dissatisfied with yourself, always wanting to change yourself. So you are full of violence and self-intolerance which only grows...any change you achieve is always accompanied by inner conflict. And you suffer when you see others achieve what you have not and become what you are not."
So from a yogic view we have the power to make ourselves. Our suffering comes when we try to bring about changes based on what other people want us to be or society says we should be or we compare and compete with our neighbors getting jealous or envious. The INTENTIONS our aspirations we have for ourselves can manifest without our coercing, forcing or doing battle to be someone else, to be something we are not. For if we try to find happiness being what someone else wants us to be we will only ever be second best. We can only be OUR BEST SELF.
De Mello compares says this is "an exhausting self-defeating process like driving with your brakes on." Which by the way in my jeep I actually have tried...doesn't work that well.
To me what we are speaking to here is the difference between being selfish (which is good) and self-intolerant. If we really like ourselves and have confidence in our life choices based on what is good for us then we ignite our greatest potential from within. We "run our own race" as I'm fond of saying. We no longer get upset, restless or dissatisfied with who we are.
We are all just flowers in the garden of life. The universe respects our diversity and wants us to bloom as our unique selves. I have often referred to myself as a delicate flower, and you are too, so let us selfishly love ourselves as we are while on the path to achieving our highest aspirations.
Love to you all, Silvia
JULY 20TH, 2009: Why do I come to the mat each and every day? I return because I want to make and keep peace with who I am. I practice in the safety of class radical self-acceptance. Through that practice I stay present to life and what it is offering me breath to breath, email by email, thought to action to observation. We are all a work in progress but that awareness of letting ourselves be who we are is vital to positive mental, emotional and spiritual health.
Think about it you can come to class at any time without having to meet any single prerequisite. You just come as you are and the power and beauty of yoga embraces you. I can tell you during times of challenge the mat was the only place I felt like I could be myself. And I mean my real self (not the pretending we do for our neighbors, colleagues, even sometime our family members). Eckhart Tolle in the book A New Earth says it like this on page 184:
"Accepting means you allow yourself to feel whatever it is you are feeling at that moment. It is part of the isness of the Now. You can't argue with what is. Well, you can, but if you do, you suffer."
Finding peace inside through compassionate self-acceptance is not that easy, but the thing is only when we find peace within can we become the kind of people who can live at peace with others. It is a straightforward spiritual law. You cannot offer to others what you don’t practice for yourself. If you don’t have peace you can’t make peace, if you don’t love yourself you can’t really love someone else, if you don’t fully accept how amazing you are, you WILL NEVER accept others. This is why when I’ve encountered the most critical or judgmental person I feel compassion for them because I know they are only treating me like that because they are first criticizing and belittling themselves. I don’t want that to be the way of energy exchange for any of us. This is why I want the world to practice yoga.
“Some people confuse acceptance with apathy, but there`s all the difference in the world. Apathy fails to distinguish between what can and what cannot be helped; acceptance makes that distinction. Apathy paralyzes the will-to-action; acceptance frees it.” Says Anne Covey
And perhaps the greatest misunderstanding of acceptance is that it is apathetic. This is not the case. Yoga is at its core learning how to accept ourselves in this moment not staying stuck in apologizing who were in the past or hyperventilating about who we might be in the future. As Fulton Oursler puts it, ‘Many of us crucify ourselves between two thieves - regret for the past and fear of the future.” When we are allowing ourselves to accept our innate goodness we can learn how to ask ourselves better questions and to listen to the answers (i.e., What do I want? What do I feel? What do I need? How can I give myself what I need right now?) In other words we aren’t trying to fix ourselves as if we were broken we nourish ourselves with self-love. This leads to a sense of feeling light, freer and healthier. So today make the choice not to keep yourself in a prison of your own making through self-criticism and harsh self-judgement but instead as Rumi says, “only from the heart can you touch the sky!” Accept yourself, lover your day, love your life! Silvia
"You do not become good by trying to be good, but by finding the goodness that is already within you, and allowing that goodness to emerge. But it can only emerge if something fundamental changes in your state of consciousness." - Page 13 Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth
REVEALING THE TRUE SELF
MARCH 4TH, 2009: “Your teacher can open the door, but you must enter by yourself.” -- Chinese Proverb
Svadhyaya is the yogic term that means 'self-study'. It is one of yoga's five Niyamas and fundamental yogic philosophies. Svadhyaya, as much of yoga is intended, is an effort to allow the sadhaka (practitioner) methods for greater insight into their own true nature. While on the mat we realize things about ourselves. If you break down the word 'realize' to 'real-ize', we see that it means to 'make real'. Svadhyaya is the practice of realizing that our life is really real; it is a practice, but not a dress rehearsal.
The process feels something like this: 1) time in quiet contemplation allows you to reflect on all that you’ve learned up to this point in your life. Every event of your life has offered its lessons. We see what has shaped us so that we stop being prisoners of our pasts and instead become architects of our futures! 2) Anchoring in our bodies helps us to be present to ourselves, to ask the right questions, to listen to the answers: what do I want for my life? What do I need? And this is what forms our intentions for making real what our dreams are. "Everyone, when they are young, knows what their destiny is. At that point in their lives, everything is clear and everything is possible. They are not afraid to dream, and to yearn for everything they would like to see happen to them in their lives."
A wonderful Rumi writing to continue to inspire you to see yourself as you really are and not settle for less, not a moment more! Love, Silvia
All day I think about it, then at night I say it.
Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing?
My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that,
And I intend to end up there.
This drunkenness began in some other tavern.
When I get back around to that place I'll be completely sober.
Meanwhile, I'm like a bird from another continent, sitting in this aviary.
The day is coming when I fly off,
But who is it now in my ear, who hears my voice?
Who says words with my mouth?
Who looks out with my eyes?
What is soul?
I cannot stop asking.
If I could taste one sip of an answer,
I could break out of this prison for drunks.
I didn't come here of my own accord, and I can't leave that way.
Whoever brought me here will have to take me home!"
NURTURING AS NOURISHMENT
Love is the capacity to take care, to protect, to nourish. If you are not capable of generating that kind of energy toward yourself- if you are not capable of taking care of yourself, of nourishing yourself, of protecting yourself- it is very difficult to take care of another person. In the Buddhist teaching, it's clear that to love oneself is the foundation of the love of other people. Love is a practice. Love is truly a practice. [Shambhala Sun March 2006 ]
We all deserve to love and be loved. Love is a form of nourishment. It requires action in thought or word or movement. If you look up Nurture in Webster’s it defines it as a “form of nourishment” and to “educate”. These are both spot on with the philosophies of yoga. In class teacher to student we are educating how to self-comfort. We hope to create such a safe and nurturing environment that as students in the kula it is easier for us to nourish ourselves with breath, poses and observation. All of this leading to greater and greater self-growth! The sweetness of life is YOU! Love, Silvia
LOVING MORE: HOW YOGA HAS CHANGED ME
JANUARY 17, 2009: Time and again I think about how the yoga is impacting my life. How it is making even the most ordinary day extraordinary and magical. The number one way yoga has changed my life is that is has helped me to be more consistently LOVING in all situations.
How this has taken place is that the practice reminds us how to demonstrate love towards ourselves first and foremost. That the love story begins with us. Hafiz says "For when the heart tastes its glorious destiny you awake to your constant need for your love." The cool thing is that we always have opportunities to LOVE ourselves. It doesn't even require we do anything heroic. And if there is a "goal" of yoga besides the process itself then I would have to say that it is SELF-LOVE.
How often do we find ourselves not being loving to ourselves in our work, in our relationships, in our work time, playtime? But when you want to shift to a more loving way of life then embrace Yoga as a life practice and you too will find your own best strength to be more loving.
And then life gets a lot better and a whole lot easier.
Take Ruth Casey's words to heart, "it only takes one person to change your life - YOU." And when we love ourselves you want to love others more or as Neem Karoli Baba puts it "Love everyone, serve everyone." Love in all ways my friends, Silvia
4TH CHAKRA: BALANCE SOFTNESS & BOUNDARIES
JANUARY 2ND, 2009: Yoga is after all not an escape from life but a way of really feeling the pulse. This pulse is found at the beating of your heart. My Father and my whole Mordini family have heart disease and my brother is a Cardiologist so I have been tuned into heart health my entire life. Maybe it some ways it has made me more sensitive to it and a little bit more vulnerable.
But that’s the point of yoga it will lead you eventually to your own vulnerability whether you want it to or not. For some this means they walk away from the practice as soon as it gets hard (I’m not talking physically but emotionally raw). It took me a long time and a ton of resistance (some anger too) to realize that being vulnerable opens up greater pathways to love and healing. Vulnerability, being soft on the inside is linked to our capacity for intimacy and love. Especially the kind of unconditional love that doesn’t sit in judgment of others. Being your soft self takes guts and a ton of courage. Being vulnerable and open hearted is not for wimps. It is the most advanced practice of yoga.
The fourth chakra is that of the heart center. And in a favorite book of mine, Wheels of Light, the author writes “LOVE IS A UNIFYING FORCE: it draws things together and keeps them in relationship. And there is no greater way to invite love than to offer it first.”
I personally have experimented with this. Putting yourself out there and offering love first and I can tell you it is scary. It’s a whole lot harder than driving a speed boat super fast, skiing down black diamond slopes, going to a nude beach, giving a presentation to hundreds of people. But here’s the thing. If you do offer it first you know you are living in the moment and by making yourself vulnerable you will live without regret.
So if you ever need that extra support to put yourself out there call me, email me, stop by. I’ve done it, I’ve lived to write about it and I have found a joyous sense of acceptance that I never even knew existed. I am here for you! Love Big In
OCTOBER 13TH, 2008: One of my fave books is called "radical self-acceptance" check it out sometime. In Yoga there is that same idea called Atma Puja translated as radical self-love. Now I'd like to tell you all that it gets easier but the reality is at least for me it hasn't. In some ways I find myself more challenged to find new ways to fall in love with myself each and every day.
A starting point is where we stop the negative self-talk and then through the loving care of our bodies and minds make better choices in eating, talking, being in a pose, breathing, working, sleeping...all of it. And this leads to less reliance on getting approval from other people. But then it doesn't stop there.
We have to continue to work to ask ourselves better and better questions in our care and feeding. This refinement is deeply impactful just like refining a pose you've been working on a long time. This means you commit to a responsible relationship with yourself not just for one breath or even twenty but for the whole of your life. You are the lover and the beloved! Today and forever shamelessly love you more!
LIFE IS MESSY: THE ART OF IMPERFECTION
SEPTEMBER 26TH: I love the title of this book by Jessica Weiner, self-esteem expert and author of LIFE DOESN'T BEGIN 5 POUNDS FROM NOW. That’s yoga! As our intentions today let’s agree we best keep learning by admitting we don't know everything yet and that we can only grow if we accept that we are not perfect. Have the courage to change, and let’s stop being afraid of making mistakes. Of course life will have trail and error. By falling over and getting up many times, children learn that walking is possible. In yoga, falling many times teaches you to fall without pain; we cannot always avoid falling, but we can often learn to avoid the pain! So join me in boldly saying the mantra to ourselves I will not let the fear of making mistakes control my life! Right? YES! Let it all be messy and imperfect. Enjoy your humanness and put others at ease because of this self acceptance. Rock on my friends! Silvia
Perhaps this meditation can be a powerful motivation as well as dedication for your practice:
"May I become at all times, both now and forever
A protector for those without protection
A guide for those who have lost their way
A ship for those with oceans to cross
A bridge for those with rivers to cross
A sanctuary for those in danger
A lamp for those without light
A place of refuge for those who lack shelter
And a servant to all in need."
--His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama
JULY 9, 2008: In yoga, there is a word for the sweetness of honey called “madhurya”. This idea of being able to really taste and savor all of our life experiences. To me it is the practice of falling in love with being ourselves over and over each day. I have not always easily embraced this as a life practice. There were certainly times growing up that being a little different (with parents that spoke English as a second language) that I was not comfortable being myself.
My yoga practice has put me at ease with being in my own skin. I credit in great part the movement of breath connected to asana as having changed me. I love the poses in all they have taught me about acceptance, patience and self-inspired self-confidence.
Keep seeking out the newness of experiences in your life. You are a love anthropologist and astronaut all at the same time!
One way I showcase my comfort in me being me is my musical tastes in class playlists as well as playful choreography. For sure I hope you enjoy the sweetness of both as I offer them to you from my heart!