You are Resilient – Allow your heart to break

When we practice yoga, when we connect consciously with our breath, we re-conect to our bodies.  We come back into the feeling center, which is absolutely necessary for any real substantial change to happen.

It is not that we don’t care about what is happening in the world,  like the degradation of our environment for example.  We do.  We are just scared to feel pain, so it is easier to disconnect and avoid the possibility of what even the thought of pain may do to us.

Feel the pain.  You will be okay.  You will come out on the other side stronger and with more wisdom to offer.  We need your wisdom and what you have to offer.

Pain is not the problem, it is how we react to the thought of pain.  I challenge you to just be with your pain.  Whatever it is.  See if you can allow yourself to be with it, and notice what happes.

We numb ourseves with food, alcohol, sex, shopping, and let’s not forget pharmaceuticals.  We are in the midst of an enormous opioid cisis, all because we are running scared from the mere thought of pain.

It is okay.  Joanna Macy asks us to allow our hearts to break.  She says, “The heart that
breaks open can contain the whole universe.”

When we allow ourselves to feel what needs to be felt, the feeling will pass.  As Pema Chodron says, “We are the sky, everything else is just the weather.”

We are so resilient.  Allow yourself to be resilient.

we are the ones we've been waiting for

Founders of #BlackLivesMatter: Getting credit for your work matters

Fortune

Leading a social justice movement is not something that most women can relate to.

However, the female founders of #BlackLivesMatter do struggle with one issue that will resonate for many women: failing to claim credit for their impressive achievements.

“This is what we do as women. We do our work, and we don’t think twice about taking the credit,” said Patrisse Cullors, co-founder of the social justice organization, which was created in 2013 in the wake of the acquittal of George Zimmerman, the man who shot unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin.

Cullors and her co-founder Opal Tometi spoke on stage with Essence editor-in-chief Vanessa De Luca at the #BlogHer15: Experts Among Us conference on Thursday evening. (#BlackLivesMatter’s third co-founder, Alicia Garza, did not attend the event.) Among other things, the duo spoke about the unique challenges—and opportunities—that exist for female leaders.

“If we didn’t insert ourselves into the narrative…

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I share

I share so I won’t forget. Isn’t that why everyone does? I share because it’s not until I can see it, touch it, feel it, and bathe in it, can I fully understand. I share because I hope that if I write it down, if I say it out loud to enough people, then maybe they’ll remind me when I forget. I share because my inner voice is my guide, and it speaks to me in such a way, that I can only hear when I share. So I share.

yoga bajan quote   Rumi

Why do you share?

Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it will Set You Free!

The year was 1998, while exploring a forest on a camping trip with friends & family, when I realized I was just like Curious George. Well, you know, he’s an archetype, and that is me. Ha! ImageImage

By stepping into this space, I lived in the mystery. I allowed myself to just begin approaching my life with a sense of wonder. When I was able to, I tossed out the idea of being “right” or “wrong” and I just…was. I began to think of myself almost like a detective in a constant quest to absorb and discover the world around me. So fun!

I have joked about this over the years, but I now realized this approach has served me in my life time and time again. Since stepping in to my greatest mission and passion in life, coaching and guiding others through yoga, which really just means to play a role in leading others back to themselves, I see the same issue come up again and again.

What I see holding so many of us back is the “thought” that we “don’t know how to do something” or that we’re not doing it “right” or we’re just not “good” at something, so we don’t dare to try.

What a prison! What an illusion! Break free!

Be Curious! Don’t lose this sense of wonder in approaching your life in a way where labels don’t exist and the opportunity for discovery is endless. Who cares if you’re doing something “right”, you’re doing it, and living life in a curious way is about ACTION!

It’s not about being or doing something right or wrong or good or bad. It’s about finding out what’s right for YOU and what’s good for YOU.

When we’re in a state of curiosity, we explore and we experiment with the innocence of a child. We don’t have attachment to outcomes or expectations of how something should be. We are open and alert, and we allow for different opportunities, experiences and people to come into our experience of life. 

“Some people like to muse on the philosophical conundrum ‘What is the meaning of life?’ But more practical philosophers ask, ‘How can I make my life meaningful?’” ~ Gelb

Wishing you well on your journey towards freedom. Image

Happiness sure seems to be creating a lot of buzzz

I’ve seen so many articles and comments recently about happiness. It’s interesting. Half of the articles talk about why being happy is the answer to our struggles and the other half talk about why happiness, or the pursuit of happiness, is a bunch of bologna.

So, in my opinion, here’s the deal.

1. Labels don’t help – Happy/Sad. Good/Bad. Right/Wrong. STOP!!!

2. Life is about balance – The tide rolls in. The tide rolls out. “If you don’t become the ocean, you’ll be seasick every day.” – Leonard Cohen

3. Allow yourself to feel – Check in. Take a quick body scan starting at the crown of your head and moving down.

I do believe that happiness can be a choice. I do believe that our thoughts can lead us toward stillness and peace (a.k.a. happiness) or away from it.

SO, overall, these articles, quotes and sharings about happiness, in my opinion, are valuable, because they may help to bring some AWARENESS to those of us that don’t really understand why we don’t feel “happy.”

What does that really mean anyway? Moving on…

With that said, NOONE is going to feel happy all of the time. Haha! Life is about polarity; balance. What goes up, must come down.

Here’s the catch. We have to be OKAY with being whatever we consider the opposite of happy. We have to give ourselves the SPACE to FEEL sad, anxious, lonely, etc, etc.

But it’s so scary! I know!

What if I stay there forever? You won’t.

What if I’m never able to get out of bed again and my tears never stop flowing? You will. And they will!

All I’m saying is that bringing AWARENESS around the idea that we actually play a part in the way we feel by the CHOICES we make is a good first step. After this, TRUST that when you are feeling down and it seems like everyone else is bouncing around happy as can be, that it’s OKAY. Allow yourself to be sad, to be mad, to feel lonely, and then LET IT GO. You choose.

Sending Love today and everyday.

xo ~ India

Image

The First Day of 2014

Today is the first day of 2014. A new year. A new moon. A fresh start. Nothing is really different. Not unless we want it to be. Not unless we choose it to be.

Some of us come into the new year, but crumble under the pressure of whatever constraints or unrealistic expectations we may have set for ourselves.

There are thousands of articles written about resolutions; how to set them, how to stick to them. Do this. Don’t do that. It can be a bit confusing & overwhelming, and the fear of failure is just about enough to make some of us not even want to try.

Deep down, we know we’ll never actually stick to whatever it is we’ve said we would, even though we wish we could. We know we’re not actually good enough, strong enough, brave enough to do THAT.

That’s for other people. People that are different than me. People that are prettier/more handsome than me, richer than me, smarter than me, blah, blah, blah. And, I’m not one of those people.

And thank God I’m not because those people are annoying. Those people don’t even know how to have a good time. Those people aren’t really happy, they’re just pretending.

Wow! We managed to completely rip ourselves to shreds and everyone else we know all in one swell swoop. This year’s off to a great start so far. Haha! finding lack in others

But, this is not true. You do not suck and neither do I. We are whole. We are perfect beings trying to navigate life the best way we know how. Each and every decision we make is just to try to feel okay. Do I want Chinese food or pizza for dinner? We choose whatever we think will just make us feel okay.

Through my widely varied experiences of life, I’ve come to believe that we have to go within.

Within? Yes.

It is full of light and full of darkness. Our hearts hold the secrets to our deepest desires and the map to fulfill our mission. The heart radiates light and serves as a lantern while discovering and unearthing the deep dark crevices and caves. There are valleys and tall, tall mountains, and this path is the way home. This place is heaven on Earth and is also scary as shit!

Because I’m privileged enough to teach Yoga for a living, and because I’ve committed to positivity, some people think it’s a hoax and a bullshit life that is full of puppies and hearts and smiles and love.  And that because I share positive messages, because I choose to share my joys that it’s a false sense of what life is really about.

I say, I’m sorry if I’ve given you the wrong impression. Life is crazy hard. I feel anxious and depressed and I struggle constantly with remembering that I am already whole. That I am enough.

The reason why I’ve committed to this work and to this message, is because when I’m integrated in this space I feel better, I remember that I am whole and I am at peace.

And if my sharing can help just one other person feel better and remember this for themselves as well, I’m in alignment with my life’s purpose.

(Raw, unedited, no make-up selfie on New Year’s Day 2014)unnamed

I wholeheartedly believe, like I’ve shared before, that we teach what we have to learn. I teach and share what I do because I need to learn it myself.

This year, my intention (notice, different from a resolution or a goal) is to Stop Judging Others and then maybe I can learn to Stop Judging Myself. Won’t you join me? no interest in judging others

Sending you so much love and so much light. Sending you infinite blessings and the hope that you will allow for miracles and magic in your life this year.

If this post spoke to you at all, please share in the comments section and share with others!

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness. Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that.” – Dr. Martin Luther King

Rewire Your Brain

This time of the year can be higher stress than usual. When you feel reactive or over-heated,

1. Take a deep inhale through the nose.

2. Take a quick body scan for stress, consciously trying to relax places where you are holding tension.

3. Silently say a word or phrase to set an intention for how you’d like to feel (i.e. focus, patience, relax).

4. Smile

This technique is based on neuroscience, and the idea is to connect a desired behavior with breathing, body awareness and a positive mood. (Hence, the smile.)

Breathing through the nose is important, because the nasal passages are smaller than the mouth and will naturally slow your breathing. Your breath rate influences heart rate, and a slower heart rate is a key predictor of health benefits around stress.

You can do this numerous times a day without anyone knowing. The power is actually in the repetition, because every time you repeat the practice, neurons are being fired that eventually will rewire your brain.

stay positive

Happy Holidays!!

xo ~ India

Source: Yoga Wisdom at Work