practice as real life

 

On the mat.

 

On the cushion.

 

In the kitchen.

 

In relationships.

 

Everything is a path.

 

These paths are an education in how to be:

 

  • responsive instead of being reactive
  • open to what’s really happening
  • less fearful of how things might turn out
  • less clingy to how you wish things were
  • more skillful in communicating
  • more compassionate to self and others

 

Diligence in one area impacts the others like ripples on a pond.   From downward dog to doing the dishes, each path is a route that can lead to deep awakening with awareness and intention.

 

 

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that’s why they call it practice

There are days that my practice happens on a yoga mat. Some days it exists on a meditation cushion. Some days it is simply moments of listening actively to another person who is standing right in front of me.

But every single minute of every single day, my practice is to see what is in front of me without passing declarative judgment. To see, notice, accept then make choices based on the reality of the situation, not on my judgment of what is in front of me.

 

 

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This “resist the urge to judge” practice has been severely put to the test this week. News from many sources this week elicited responses that all reflected some sense that “this is good”, “this is bad” or “this is catastrophic”.

As soon as my judgment has been leveled and I’ve dispatched the labels “good”, “bad” or “catastrophic”, the situation in front of me now rises to the status I have given it.

And then my thoughts and emotions about it rise up alongside my judgment. And, as if from nowhere, it’s as if I’m in a blender with all aspects of the situation. No distance, no perspective and no escape.

My escalated emotional, reactional state lulls me into thinking I’m actually awake. But am I? Am I really awake?

The Taoist Farmer

A man named Sei Weng owned a beautiful mare which was praised far and wide. One day this beautiful horse disappeared. The people of his village offered sympathy to Sei Weng for his great misfortune. Sei Weng said simply, “That’s the way it is.” 

A few days later the lost mare returned, followed by a beautiful wild stallion. The village congratulated Sei Weng for his good fortune. He said, “That’s the way it is.”

Some time later, Sei Weng’s only son, while riding the stallion, fell off and broke his leg. The village people once again expressed their sympathy at Sei Weng’s misfortune. Sei Weng again said, “That’s the way it is.”

Soon thereafter, war broke out and all the young men of the village except Sei Weng’s lame son were drafted and were killed in battle. The village people were amazed as Sei Weng’s good luck. His son was the only young man left alive in the village. But Sei Weng kept his same attitude: despite all the turmoil, gains and losses, he gave the same reply, “That’s the way it is.”

Our times call for a practiced measure of relaxed alertness. Be awake. Be aware. But don’t expect that escalation and reaction is the same as being awake.

If what is happening really is what it is, now what?

 

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Instead of asking what my reaction to injustice will be, I could be asking, what is my response to it going to be?

Without emotional escalation and obsession with the unfairness of it all, what can I do now? On my mat? On my cushion? While listening to others?

Today, right now, can I choose tolerance, peace and resist the urge to judge beyond the usefulness of it?

Honestly? I don’t know. I really don’t know.  I’m kind of attached to my judgment of this mess.  I’m kind of attached to the rage.

But that’s why it’s a practice.

practice makes practice

I love puzzles.

All kinds.

Jigsaw, crossword, mazes, lateral-thinking brain teasers. Although, I do find the last ones a tad frustrating since I tend to be too much of a linear, sequential thinker to consider the myriad of potential solutions.  Usually end up thinking “how did I not come up with that answer?” when I finally find it out.

I also love to guess whodunit long before the last clue is dropped in the plot of a suspenseful, crime drama.

This fondness for puzzles extends to when I am dealing with someone who is expressing a level of anger, for example, that seems to be beyond what is called for. I look for subtle clues that the person might be giving off about what other, more authentic emotion, may really existing beneath the rage but is resistant to surface.

Oddly enough, this puzzling interest of mine is not helpful for my mindfulness practice.

Whether I am considering my yoga, meditation or daily mindfulness practice, the hyper-vigilant scanning for the “why’s” and “how’s” is a considerable distraction.  A misdirection of sorts that clashes with a mindful moment.  I want to know…

Why practice at all and is it even practical to do so?

How could my practice lead to a greater resilience in the face of challenges?

Why do I feel the need to document and share my views on my practice?

But at the end of this cycle of my present inhale and exhale, it is clear that this distraction and misdirection is taking me away from that which I seek.  Presence.

Practice is not a puzzle to be solved or a means to a better end.

While there may be beneficial side effects from maintaining a regular mindfulness practice, it becomes just another puzzle when there is one eye on the potential of puzzle mastery.

Practice doesn’t make perfect.

Practice makes practice.

In the face of whatever arises.

That is all.

 

 

 

effort and ease

 

“A” for Effort

For almost two decades, I believed that I could outsmart the differences and disintegration. But when my crumbling marriage finally lay in heaps all around me, I heard a common sentiment from my tribe.

“No one could ever blame you for not trying”.

In the devastating aftermath, I already had plenty of guilt, shame and fear of the future to juggle so there was some small comfort in being told that I could let go of some of the blame due to the fact that I had been “trying” so hard.

But now, after almost a decade after the dust has settled, I see the game I had been and still am playing. It’s a sleight of hand trick. To intentionally draw attention to one thing to keep them from seeing another.  Hey, look at me trying.

It’s like the fiction authors who insert themselves into the plot ensuring that the reader thinks of the author often and is not able to get lost in the story. Or the actors who don’t let you forget they are acting thereby not allowing you to suspend belief for the length of the movie by believing they are who they are portraying.

Or it’s like me in yoga class when I make my effort clear to the teacher so that they don’t expect the same perfection in the pose that I am expecting because they see how hard I am trying.

But that is exhausting.  Trying hard to outrun criticism or suggestions for improvement  is a dead end run.

EoA2blog
Do or not do. There is no try.

How can I move from “try” to “do”?

In yoga class, instead of trying to get my heels to the floor in Downward Dog, what if I simply do the Downward Dog that is accessible in the evolution of my personal practice, and extend my heels towards the floor and call it a day?

And what if I considered that I might have an unhealthy attachment to trying?  Ouch. That’s uncomfortable.

This came up recently in yoga class when the instructor asked us to gauge our level of effort in a challenging pose. She encouraged us to give about 70% effort.  I have given that same instruction in classes but always resist it when the instruction is given to me.  The alternative to actually exerting less effort is to try to look like you’re not trying so hard. That’s something I would totally do and you’d be justified in putting me in a padded room for it.  That is just crazy-making!!!   Easier just to give a little less, non?  

Then another instructor asked us to go deeper, to look beyond the bold noticeable effort we were exerting and consider what “subtle efforts” we were still engaging in. Where were still trying hard to rescue ourselves from this challenge in hidden ways, down deep beneath where they couldn’t be seen?   Yikes, this will take some work!

Outside of yoga class, what if I gave less than 100%? What would that look like?

What if, in my relationships, I didn’t try to play a role in that relationship and just be in it?  What if I didn’t keep inserting myself into the universal story line?  What would look different? What would look the same but feel different?

 

EoA blog

Ease = Effortless Effort

Ease. Not a place where I tend to hang out. Trying hard seems to have been permanently etched on my moral compass. Trying hard has seemed to be tied to authenticity to me. Even in failure and loss, if you tried harder then there was some consolation. Ah, my old friend, consolation. You are never far.

Ease. Would actual authenticity be easier? What would the ease of authenticity look like?

Ease.  I’m putting a pin in the map at that location and seeing if I can let go of trying so hard and can meander into a clearing of effortless effort.  All the chronic over-achieving, perfectionist, try-ers are welcome to join me.  Bring your own hammocks!

 

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no chance of rain

 

You know that rare, unexpected moment when you look around you and notice that there are no major crises swallowing up your attention? You know the kind of event that seemingly hijacks your life and derails even your daily plans?  None.

In that rare moment, even if you’re experiencing some confusion, minor loss, life dis-order or chronic busyness, the things you’re facing apparently do not qualify for the master list of significant life stressors so should be more or less manageable according to the creators of the master list.

Quite recently, I realized that over a few weeks surrounded by the unremarkable stress of being a living, breathing conscious person, I became increasingly agitated.   And as my general uber-vigilant disposition was not picking up any external signs of an intense struggle to engage or an insurmountable obstacle to overcome, it seemed that I needed to create some concrete struggle internally.

Suddenly my own arbitrary deadlines rose to commandment status with the added pressure of “someone will be waiting on me for this”.  In my own gospel, Never Leave Anyone Waiting is the second commandment after Do Everything Correctly and followed by Everything Matters. My inclination to set regular goals and write lists became a firm attachment to perfectly imagined outcomes followed by an out-of-balance disappointment when they were not realized. My growing acceptance of “this is the way life is” was recklessly abandoned on the meditation cushion with my settled breathing and mind. Slow, mindful movements were replaced with jittery legs and fidgety fingers. Sleep was rest-less and stillness disappeared.

Remember, there was no genuine crisis. Bounty was all around me.  Relationships, life’s work, passions and creative outlets were all within much more-than-rich and satisfying range. Life, as they say, was and is good.

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On a clear, breezy day with no clouds or chances of rain, am I addicted to the chaos of panic and pressure? Do I need to create drama where there is none in order to feel engaged, relevant and meaningful? Does dis-ease become my default position especially when things are going well?

I don’t know.  Now comes the sitting and listening with a curiosity for what comes up and with no predetermined outcome.  If panic asks to take over, I’ll re-read “the “3 steps to pacify the panic” blog I wrote a few years ago and get un-stuck (again!) from this familiar place.

May your summer be full of self-accepting moments where you never give up on the places where you get repeatedly stuck!

 

 

 

 

nowhere to go. nothing to do. no one to be.

It’s hard to believe that it was four years ago now when I crossed a line. It was the day I removed my shoes and socks and stepped my bare feet over the border of my comfort zone and joined a community yoga class. Once there, I was continually stretching and stretched in more ways than one.

Before that fateful day, the only knowledge I’d had about yoga had come from the books and videos I’d borrowed from the public library. Confused hours were spent on the carpeted floor in front of my television wishing I could get a 360 degree view of the leotard-clad instructor so I could see exactly how her left ankle appeared to be attached to her right ear.

Mellow Monkey

Being in an actual class with a three-dimensional instructor was a much more effective way for me to learn especially since all the teachers at the studio were keen on the ‘come and watch’ version of demonstrating the pose first and explaining in detail the geeky why’s, what’s and how’s of each pose. And not once was I asked to turn myself into a human pretzel or attach my ankles to my ears.

At the end of my very first class, all newbies were instructed to lie down on our backs into what is known in Sanskrit as Savasana or Corpse Pose. After an hour of lengthening and stretching my overly-constricted body that had been tightly wound for several decades, I laid my shaking limbs down thinking that pretending to be a corpse for a few minutes would be just what I needed to recover enough for the long walk home after class.

Once the darkened room was quiet, and the softly-spoken instructions for the restorative pose tailed off, the teacher’s next words floated out over all the resting corpses like a blessing or words of commissioning that would accompany them to the new world of resting deeply. The blessing was:

Rest now. There is nowhere to go. Nothing to do. No one to be.  Just be and breathe.

And then silence.

And deep, deep relief.

I was totally off the hook. For the next ten minutes, I was given space and choice to do nothing. To let go of the need to produce, to power through, to prove. It lasted for a second. But for that second, I was free.  All I had to do was be and breathe.  I could do that.

That incredible feeling of liberation that came from this first experience was short-lived because, as a recovering perfectionist, of course I had to question whether or not I was ‘doing nothing’ correctly. Am I resting deeply enough? How could I be doing this better? Could the teacher tell that I was over-thinking it? Was anyone else struggling to stay in the moment? Obsessive much?

It has only been with time (years of it), self-compassion, regular practice and holding loosely onto outcomes that I have re-discovered subsequent moments of freedom from over-doing, over-thinking, over-producing. Beautiful, soft, liberating moments of non-doing.

Now, at the end of each of my personal yoga practices or as I am preparing to go to drift off to sleep at night or in the midst of a stressful situation, I assume the position of the corpse and bless myself.

Rest now. There is nowhere to go. Nothing to do. No one to be.  Just be and breathe.

 

 

my precious morning routine

“I am not a morning person. I have to ease into my day slowly. First I have my coffee. Sans eggshells or anything else one tends to pick out of the garbage. Then I have a low fat, high fibre breakfast. Finally I sit down and read a crisp, new newspaper. If I am robbed of the richness of my morning routine, I cannot function. My radio show suffers, and like ripples in a pond, so do the many listeners that rely on my advise, to help them through their troubled lives. I’m sorry if this may sound priggish, but I have grown comfortable with this part of myself. It is the magic that is me.”

The above “priggish” speech was pompously delivered by the tight-lipped yet lovable radio psychiatrist in the 80’s sitcom, Frasier.  He was defending his right to keep to his intensely, precise morning routine in order to perform his best throughout his day.  

After my last post about how often the pressure of time significantly increases my stress level, the scene from this episode came to mind along with the memory of the dismissive eye-rolling from the supporting cast and from me. .

I began to consider strategies I use to manage my weekday mornings.  Here are my three simple methods of creating space, stress-free morning moments and a way to ease into a world geared for moving constantly in fifth gear.

1.  Night Vision

My mother tells the story of a time she came into my bedroom to wake me for school to find me still asleep but already fully dressed for the school day.  Apparently, I had put on my clothes the night before. And even more apparently, I was quite an odd child with the quirks to rival those of a sitcom character!  Perhaps my motivation was to find calm in the chaos of a busy school morning filled with getting my turn in the bathroom, practicing piano, making lunches, eating breakfast, doing the dishes and packing my schoolbag, all alongside my three siblings who were also doing the same things.

Currently my mornings do not involve jockeying for position with siblings or piano practice but can still induce a level of nerve-jangling tension when the clock ticks closer to the time I need leave for work.  For this reason I decided to use the night before more wisely.  No, I don’t sleep in my work clothes (often).  But I do prepare my lunch, choose my outfit, pick up some of the excess clutter and create a to-do list all before I go to bed.   This all takes me no more than half an hour.  Not too much work for a huge benefit of a slower pace in the morning.

2.  Rush No More

Realizing that rushing is a genuine energy-sapper for me, my goal is to pace my mornings so that there is no need to hurry.  To make this happen, I choose to get up as early as possible to leave morning space to pause, to linger, to, heaven forbid, dawdle!  By getting up earlier, I have time to sit for a short time of meditation, practice some simple yoga stretches, record three ‘gratitudes” in my journal and enjoy a leisurely breakfast while considering my day ahead.  There are those days when getting up so early is not so easy as others.  My routine is too precious to be written in stone so there is always room to change it according to the situation.  But there is a noticeable difference in my energy levels on the days that begin early with this settling routine.

There was a time that I would regularly check my work email in the morning but I quickly realized that it only served to put my nervous system in work-mode high gear and encroached on the unhurried pace of my personal time.  I was no further ahead when I got to work by knowing what new things were going to be added to my ‘to-do’ list and instead, I’d arrive depleted of energy that would be necessary for later in the day.

3.  Leave Stuff Undone

A problem for many of us with Chronic Productivity Syndrome, is that we feel the need to fill in any extra space with productive activity.  This is true for me.  I look at the clock, see that I’ve got plenty of time before I need to leave so I attempt to fit something useful into that space.  Wash the dishes, pay a bill online, clean the kitty litter, email a friend or whatever.  The pausing, lingering and dawdling are tossed out in favour of “getting something done”. The conflict occurs when I realize that I am soon going to leave my home for a job where i am expected to be “getting something done” for the next 8 or more hours.  Where’s the balance?

And if you’re like me, you’ll begin a task that will keep your steady focus on it until you look at the clock and realize that now you’re running late.  Nervous system is on high alert and deep breathing becomes more shallow and less nourishing.  The trick is to consciously, purposefully leave something undone in favour of a moment of just being.  See the task, notice your desire to attend to it immediately, to fix it , finish, manage it, then just leave it!  You know it wil still be there later.

With this precious morning routine, I clearly understand that I will most likely be considered priggish, hyper-sensitive, and a quintessential introvert to the n-th degree, but I’m okay with that.  This routine provides me with the pace I like, the space I need and energy I love to be the magic that is me.  (Cue the eye-rolling!)

Make it a morning of unhurried moments.

Egypt

time after time

 

“Don’t wish time away”.  I heard this phrase many times growing up.

But we do that very thing every time we unconsciously use languaging like “I can’t wait!”,  “I wish it was already the weekend.”, or  “Is it 5 o’clock yet?”

More subtly, we do it whenever we rush.  We scurry from one activity to the other without lingering because we’ve got so much life to live and so little time in which to do it.  A full day of the flurry of hurry finds us slumping into our easy chair with an exhausted sigh at the end of it.   A long week of this and no wonder we’re all waiting for the weekend.

But seriously, what’s the rush?

I was recently on my way to meet a friend and I found myself rushing significantly.  It was to the point that my body began giving clear signals that this was not okay.   My mind was so distracted and scattered that I couldn’t find my keys that were right in front of me.  My heart was racing to keep up with my manic multi-tasking and my abdomen felt like it bound was in a vice-grip with no sense of softness or room for breath.  So I stopped.   I took a few deep belly breaths and asked myself why I was rushing. The following inner scripts came quickly to light:

1.  Being late is morally wrong and is a sign of disrespect
2.  The person waiting for you will think poorly of you, if you are late
3.  Time is running out

Some of these underlying beliefs may sound familiar to the perfectionists in the crowd.  Or maybe you have your own stories.

The Passage of Time

Clearly it was time for a script re-write!

!.  Being late is not a sign of immorality or disrespect. It is a sign that you planned too much and didn’t realistically balance with how long things would take you.   It is merely a sign of poor time management, not of your value as a person.

2.  The person waiting for me will think “She’s late. She’s usually on time so something unexpected must have held her up.  No big deal.”   (And why does concern about what others will think take precedent over genuinely enjoying this moment?  Another inner script begging for a re-write?)

3.  Time doesn’t run out, it simply is what it is.  It is one moment after the next.  This moment isn’t running anywhere but you are rushing to get to the next and the next and the next moment based on falsehoods and fantasies.  All the while you’re missing this amazing moment right now.

I once had a yoga teacher who implored his students to be authentically present and aware in the pose he was teaching wherever they were that day.  A simple yoga pose is multi-leveled and our openness on any given day allows us to explore the depths or stay at the surface and learn there. His experience led him to say “I’ve been to the end of this pose and there’s nothing there.” Perfecting the pose, taking it as deep as possible doesn’t get us to any promised land or to ultimate answers.  It’s the process that matters. The journey of each step is where the abundance lies.

Turkey Yoga Pose AsanaInstead of wishing time away, how about witnessing each moment as an eternity?  There is more than enough time to be present in this moment.  And this moment is the most important one you’ll ever have.

What will you do with it?

 

stop, drop and breathe!

 

Have you ever noticed that there seems to be a common reaction to moments of sudden increased tension, unexpected news, or times when we’re nervous, frightened or otherwise overwhelmed?  We hold our breath.

 

Marianne, Norway

 

You might recognize that you tend to hold your breath in the following situations:

~ a car stops suddenly in front of yours and you must break hard to avoid a collision
~ you hear that someone close to you has experienced a devastating loss
~ as a joke, someone jumps out at your from around a corner to “scare” you
~ you’re performing a physically challenging task
~ you have a zillion things to do so you plow through without break or breath!

It doesn’t even need to be an extreme situation of tension or loss.  I’ve witnessed this in a yoga class when I asked a group of beginner students to extend more deeply into a simple pose or to hold it longer.  Suddenly, the entire room was not breathing.  En masse, the class was holding its breath and the energy change in the room because of it was palpable.  It seems odd that something we do without thinking and that is proof that we are alive, we unconsciously choose not to do it in a reaction to stress.

I could write a book on all the reasons we hold our breathe but suffice it to say that it is not in the best interest of our body, minds or souls to hold our breath in times of stress.  Stress, especially chronic stress, creates a toxic environment in our body and breathing is the Mighty De-toxifier who releases 70% of all toxins when we breathe deeply.

When things get tough and your nerves are jangling like a set of car keys, you can stop, drop and breathe.  Nothing I’ve ever experiences puts out the fire of panic and chaotic thinking like breathing.  Here are three key steps to get your started making this a daily habit.

1.  STOP

I mean this literally.   In the face of whatever is happening in the moment of tension, stress, panic or unexpectedness, just stop.   Take a moment.  The world will not end if you take a moment of awareness instead of reacting immediately and unconsciously.

2.  DROP  (NOTICE)

Notice when you tend to hold your breath most often.  What types of situations find you most often reacting this way?  Physical?  Emotional?  Relational? How often in a day do you find yourself not breathing regularly?  Where does it happen?  Work?  Home?  Social Situations?  What part of your body tenses when your breath is not flowing?  How do you feel after the tense moment subsides and you begin breathing again?  Where does your mind (and at what speed) go when your breath stops?

3.  BREATHE

Then when you’ve stopped, noticed that you’re in a situation where you’d most often hold your breath, allow the breath to flow.  Without force or attempting to deepen your breath in any way, simply let it flow naturally in and out.  It knows what to do!  While your respiratory system is doing its job, just notice.  What is the quality of your breath?  Where do you notice it showing up in your body?  Your nostrils?  Chest?  Belly?  Again, without directing it, just be aware that it is  happening.

With practice, you will eventually more aware of your tendency to keep your breath from naturally doing its job.  Begin to notice how you feel once you’ve chosen to maintain a steady, even breath even during tense moments.  Notice any differences in the tightness in your body, the stories in your mind and your recovery time from the stressful situation.

Look for future posts on more amazing benefits of breathing and simple methods of incorporating deep, rejuvenating breathing into each and every day.  Happy breathing!

 

 

 

 

the reluctant coach

Once upon a time in a land far, far away, I was sitting on a bench in a playground watching my two pre-school sons navigate the jungle gym with a raw, adventurous curiosity that only children who have not yet been formally educated can have.

But since I’d had almost two decades of formal education by that point in my life most of my curious wonderings were tucked firmly away in deep, dusty pockets of parental responsibility, exhaustion and occasional bouts of generalized cynicism.

Feeling protective of my precious pseudo-solitude on the bench when my boys weren’t needing me to wipe something, tie something or solve some emotional upheaval between them, I’m sure I let out an audible sigh when a father and his young daughter wandered into the playground.

playground

With no energy to make small talk, I kept my gaze in the direction of my playing boys taking full advantage of that spacey, far-off look I get when tiredness gets in the driver’s seat of my attention. A stolen sideways glance at the father revealed the slump-shouldered look of a man who likely had even less energy for conversation than I did.  For that, I was grateful.

He mumbled some sort of greeting as he sat down on the bench next to me and for a few sacred moments there was an easy silence that was broken only by our infrequent individual interaction with our children.  But then I heard his audible sigh revealing that he was not as much at ease as I had assumed and apparently felt a obligation to begin a conversation.

“Do you live around here?”

From there, we rode the merry-go-round of pleasantries for a few minutes and then he asked what my then-husband did for a living.  I caught myself hesitating to respond.  Turning to do a visual check of my boys’ whereabouts, I did my best to put on an air of casualness.

“He’s a…ummm…he’s a motivational speaker”.

Clearly unimpressed, he grunted loudly.  “A motivational speaker?  Humph….what does he go on about?”

I stifled my own laughter as I tried feebly conjure up the words to defend my husband’s choice of life’s work to this stranger who clearly thought the whole thing was a load of bunk.   But, in fact, I had struggled to “get“ the idea of my ex’s line of work for a long time.  Yes, I know he was helping others towards a new level of self-development and encouraging them to discover transforming moments in their lives.  He was sincere, he was gifted and what he did was important.  Clearly.  But was it work?

According to the Gospel of My Inner Script, work had always meant hard labour whether that be manual, mental, emotional or spiritual.  It meant getting tired.  Even exhausted.  It meant not taking vacations.  And it mostly meant people commenting on the unbelievable schedule I was keeping and how dedicated I must be to keep up the grueling pace all in the name of hard work.  Dark circles and bags strategically under each eye along with frequent illnesses helped with this plan.

Loading hay

Fast-forward a couple of decades later .  My boys are now out in the world, on their own.  Ex-husband is very successfully motivating others in another country.   And I’m here, consciously choosing to the change my life-script,  to find a more useful meaning for the term ‘work’ and to create a beautiful, engaging and passionate life/work balance.

After two more decades of informal education ( life experience) and a renewed child-like curiosity, I’m being drawn inexplicably towards an evolving life’s work that encourages others to dig deep to re-discover the best version of themselves.  To give them a framework for re-writing their own scripts and for setting out intentions and goals.  To help them rewire the neural connections that have been feeding the not-so-useful habits and ingrained patterns that are keeping them stuck.   To help them getting reacquainted with their own body and its deep wisdom.  To help them explore methods of daily groundedness and ease in the face of free-floating anxiety or numbing fear.  To challenge them to draw on their skills, their experiences and their unique personality to create a life of abundance, passion and significance.

So how’s that for getting run right over by the freaking karma bus?   Snickering cynic turned life cheerleader.  Sarcastic skeptic turned self-help sister.  Life-long workaholic turned life coach, mentor and ally.

After I stopped rolling my eyes at myself, I realize this work is what I’ve been doing for most of my life. Intuitively.  And it’s a natural progression of my teaching and guiding of overwhelmed adolescent learners as well as instructing in the practices of yoga and meditation. This evolution of a life’s work that hums marvelously with more balance and is deeply aligned with my deepest values has happened right before my eyes.  This is just too good not to share.

Just in case you think I’m branching into this area because I’ve got it all together, think again.  With miles to go before I sleep, I’m considering nifty monikers for myself like The Manic Mentor or Your Anxious Ally.   But I’m quite certain that those wouldn’t be good marketing strategies and my business coach would highly object.

Stick around if you would like to learn some basic strategies that have tremendously helped me to create a clearer more settled path from overwhelmed to okay.