Tag Archives: meditation

Living Your Power

Handstand at Jangala in Peru














Our 3rd chakra is the manipura chakra. Manipura translates to ‘lustrous gem’, because it shines bright like the sun, it is our radiant power from the inside. The purpose of the manipura chakra is to overcome inertia and transformation.

Practices that bring balance to this chakra are kapalabhati breathing, meditation, writing in your journal, and overcoming inertia with asanas (yoga postures).

Take time to reflect on the following questions to ignite your inner fire:

– What am I passionate about?

– What type of life do I want to live?

– How can I be authentic?

– How can I follow my integrity?




Now what?









The New Year has started and the first week of the year is a good time to check in with your intentions for 2012. It is a way to come back to your goals before they get away from you!

Part of my intention for the New Year is to stay focused and be more mono-tasked rather than always multi-tasking. As I write this newsletter I notice the distractions popping up – texting with my sister, posting to facebook – but like in meditation I come back to my breath and stay on task. Rather than ridiculing myself for attempting to multi-task I kindly coax my attention back to the newsletter.

What intention for the year did you set? How have you been living with that intention so far? What can you do to support yourself?

Taking time for yourself is a great way to stay on track with your intentions. Planning ahead can keep the dark days at bay and fend off the urge to give up or succumb to the winter blues. Personally, I know that February and March are months that test my light mood with the dark and cold days of winter. This year I am fending off seasonal blues with the bright reminder that in less than two months we’re off to Bali for this years international yoga retreat!

What plans can you make to practice your intention and self-care? Maybe a massage, mani-pedi, yoga class, dance class, time alone at home?

May we all live light, because everything is already okay.




Staying focused when overwhelmed

My list of goals and things to do keeps growing and I want so badly to hit the ground running and tackle what I keep procrastinating. I find myself feeling so overwhelmed by what needs to be done that I end up lying down and doing nothing and feeling stressed about it. This happened recently and after a day and a half of laying around I realized I needed to simplify how I was looking at what work needed to be completed.

If you have that same feeling of being overwhelmed by all of the things that you need and want to do in one day pick 1-2 small things on your list that you know you can complete today and let those be your only focus. You don’t need to finish everything on your list at once. We can be so distracted by the desire to multitask and complete many things at once that we end up with limited to no focus. By staying on task with 1 or 2 small things you will find a sense of accomplishment and encouragement to tackle more tomorrow.

In yoga there is the term drishti which translates to gaze. The gaze of your eyes is an important part of learning to stay focused. Drishti is also extremely helpful when practicing balancing asanas (yoga postures). It begins to bring us to a place where we are able to have ekagraha, one pointed focus. When our eyes begin to wander so does our mind. If our list of things to do is so long that our mind keeps wandering it is hard to stay focused and get anything done. So begin to simplify and move away from multitasking to a one-pointed-focus.

If your one pointed focus is to complete a presentation, writing a document, or resting in bed, let that be all of your focus. So rather than laying down and feeling stressed about letting yourself rest, tell yourself that is what the focus is for the moment. Being in stillness can be extremely powerful in rejuvenating and preparing the body and mind. Take time to sit in meditation and savor the moments of non-doing.

Live Light Practice:

What is one thing you want to focus on for the next 3 hours? Let that be where all of your attention goes and each time your mind tries to pull you in a different direction take a breath and get back on track. Your mind will come up with many clever ways to distract you so be compassionate and aware rather than judging yourself for shifting your attention somewhere else for a moment. After exploring this approach a few times you will find the times of rest being more restful and the times of action being more efficient and successfully completed.




Thank yourself for…


At the end of each yoga class I like to close the session with my hands on my belly and chest to thank yourself for your practice and dedication today. It is a reminder to be grateful for your body, for yourself, and your dedication to the practice of living a healthier and more balanced life.

How often do we really thank ourselves? When we go home to be with our families or see old friends for the holiday we can fall back on habitual patterns of the past. It is important to stay present with yourself at this time and what you need. By taking time out to rejuvenate yourself you will be more likely to stay true to the person you have become rather than turning to food to calm our possibly turbulent emotions from the holidays. Perhaps this only pertains to me, but I am guessing we all have our own little idiosyncrasies when it comes to our families and old friends.

As a child you may demand things of your parents. As a parent you may be searching for just five minutes peace. Whatever your family role may be, be mindful of how your behavior is influencing others. Or perhaps you are rediscovering old friendships, be aware of the old thought patterns (samskaras) that appear as you revisit the past. The mindfulness and self-care practice doesn’t have to begin on Thursday Nov 24th. You can start setting your intention now and being clear with what you need to stay mindful and healthy over the long weekend.

Live Light Practice:

Set aside 20 minutes to sit and meditate. Begin the meditation by asking yourself what it is that you need to stay light and healthy over thanksgiving. Sit with whatever may arise in those twenty minutes. As the mind wanders gently coax it back to the question of ‘What do I need to stay light and healthy over thanksgiving?’. After the 20 minutes write down what you discovered in your meditation. Then place the pen down and ask yourself what are you grateful for? Give yourself another 20-30 minutes of time to quietly sit with this question without moving or writing anything. Then crack open your eyes pick up your pen and list 25 things you are grateful for at that moment. Take your time, don’t rush, and no matter how big or small you feel the things are that you are grateful for still acknowledge them all.