Monthly Archives: August 2010

30 Aug

Burning the candle at both ends.

D-6219Have you ever felt this way?

Busying yourself with being busy… filling your schedule with so many things that life is a constant rush, a constant appointment… not allowing time to simply stop.

Such has been the case in my life for these past few weeks. I can honestly say, that today is the first day that I am working from home and loving every minute of it. I don’t have any appointments, any places to be… no friends to meet. Having not made this time in so long, I realize how important it is, and how I need to be doing this a lot more.

I recently read a newsletter from owner at Abhyasa Yoga Center in Williamsburg, BK that totally resonated with me, and is along this same school of thought.

“If your mind is all over the place when you’re doing a simple form then, fact is, that is what is happening. Your mind is all over the place. Increased physical challenge can successfully overwhelm the senses and obscure your minds’ ruminations, as in the expression “get out of my head.” This can be enjoyable, even beneficial; however, the “high” will eventually wear off and the underlying state of anxiety remains. The cycle of distraction/ relief will need to be repeated again and again, sometimes with unintended detriment.

One of the primary stated purposes of Yoga practice is to reduce the “fluctuations” of mind so that we can have clarity in our experience. Engaging the physical forms intends to bring ourselves present, not distract us from it.

Its understandable that being present when we are filled with anxiety is not initially enjoyable but in order to begin the process of easing what ails us, we first need to acknowledge that it exists. Like a cold that lasts for months instead of a few days because its been covered up by taking nasal decongestants, we have to let ourselves feel whatever it is before we can overcome it.

By embracing what is present, even when it is unfavorable, we are in a position to develop an alternate course. Otherwise, things are likely to continue as they are despite our best efforts. Until we can be with ourselves, doing nothing, and feel relatively at ease, the chances that we will ever feel at ease when we are doing things and being with other people are very slim.

The key to cultivating a Yoga practice that is not just another distraction is the context and mentality it encompasses. For the most part, everyone is doing the same forms. How and why we are doing them is making for drastically different experiences and results.”

– J. Brown, Owner, Abhyasa Yoga Center, BK

22 Aug

Be present

blog_bepresentStop for a moment, in your busy life, and see what it feels like to simply be. Take a deep breath, put aside your cellphone, your computer, (I know, it’s hard), even try to put aside your thoughts. If putting aside your thoughts isn’t an option as you take this opportunity, there is always the option of simply being with your thoughts, and granting yourself the chance to sit and watch as they pass through your mind. You might notice that as you are watching, it might feel like weights are being lifted off of your shoulders, and you might even feel a greater sense of clarity.

With all that we have as distractions around us these days – it is extremely hard to turn it all off. Taking the time to stop and be present in your life, in the here and now, and to slow down and evaluate what’s important right now can be so beneficial. It can change your whole day, your outlook on a situation, even your whole outlook on life! Everyday, I am challenged with the notion of trying to be present. As life goes, there are always tests that pop up that enable us to practice being more aware all the time. Try it. See what you see as you stop and observe.

09 Aug

Sirsasana – The king of all asanas

blog_headstand2Sirsasana, or head stand pose, is known as the king of all asanas. According to Iyengar, in his yoga bible called “Light on Yoga” – when we are born, the head comes out first, and then the limbs. He explains, the skull encases the brain, and the brain controls the nervous system and the sense organs. The brain is what holds intelligence, knowledge, wisdom, discrimination, power. The brain is what holds the soul. So, as a country cannot function without a king to guide for it, a body cannot function and prosper without a healthy brain.

When practicing Sirsasana, it is important to practice the correct alignment, so as to avoid any neck or shoulder injuries while in the process. For starters, the prep for this pose will enable you to build that solid foundation of alignment while preparing for the full pose. See below:

1. Come onto all 4’s on your mat (if you are new to this pose, line the front part of your mat up against a wall)

2. Interlace your fingers, creating a lock that will hold the back part of your head as you place the top part of your head, the crown, onto the floor

3. After the top of your head is on the floor, supported by your interlaced fingers – straighten your legs and begin to slowly walk your feet in, as your shoulders come over your elbows, and hips over shoulders

4. Try bending one knee first, then the other and see if you can bring both legs up either against the wall, or using your core to find balance

5. If you are able to find balance with knees bent, try to straighten both legs, one leg at a time.

Presto Sirsasana!

Some of the Benefits:

* Regular practice of Sirsasana makes healthy pure blood flow through the brain cells

* Ensures a proper blood supply to the pituitary and pineal glands of the brain

* Source of energy

To be aware of:

** Generally said to be contraindicated during the female menstrual cycle

** Should not be practiced with high or low blood pressure

** Generally contraindicated during pregnancy

06 Aug

New York Yoga

New York Yoga

Hi Friends!

I will be teaching hot vinyasa yoga at New York Yoga on the UES Saturday afternoon’s at 1pm! The class is 90 minutes long, and all levels are welcome. If you haven’t tried hot yoga before, see below for some of the benefits of it!

Benefits of Hot Yoga:

*Promotes detoxification and elimination through the skin, which is the body’s largest eliminating organ.

*Improves circulation

*Increases flexibility

*Strengthens willpower, focus, concentration and determination!

Hope to see your in class. Make sure to drinks lots of water and/or coconut water before and during!

Namaste.

04 Aug

Exquisite Anonymity

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAI had to run an errand the other morning in Chinatown, and as I was picking up some herbs that my awesome acupuncturist Aimee Raupp had prescribed for me — I couldn’t help but feel like I was in another world completely. Being down there at the start of the day, the hustle and bustle, people everywhere, was somehow astonishing to me. It seemed quite foreign, and I felt like a tourist in my own city! Everyone was carrying red plastic bags filled with who knows what… Breakfast? Herbs? Newspapers? I was intrigued. It was cool to be in New York, but feel like I was some place else. I was literally walking slower just trying to take it all in. When I got home, it had me thinking about the notion of anonymity, and how we are always anonymous in this huge New York city anyway, but sometimes that feeling can be heightened. Since it’s rare when it happens, it takes that anonymous feeling to the next level, and that morning did that for me. For the rest of that morning, my mind was left pondering the subcultures of our city, and how lucky we all are to be living among them.

01 Aug

Sunshine!

blog_sunshineHello friends!

Such a beautiful weekend we are having! I have to say, the sun really does make for a better state of mind. This past week was kind of a tough one for me… I was just feeling a bit out of it, sluggish, not my usual self… but somehow, with all this sun, the weekend and some good friends, I am feeling uplifted!

It’s always amazing to me how that works… one day feeling like crap, the next day feeling great. I’m not questioning it, I am going with it :) – but I just wanted to share this feeling of being ignited again.

I hope you are all having a great weekend… enjoying the sunshine and feeling lit up about something too!

Cheers!