Five Steps to a Healthy Mind-Body Relationship

‘Become fluent in your body’s language. Listen and learn to discern the subtleties of its tone and the meaning of its phrases. If you must speak, speak kindly or speak not at all. Let your conversation be that of a close friend – intimate, honest, encouraging and playful. But listen more than talk, observe and know. ‘ – Yoga Expression Spirit – Tools for Authentic Living.

In my last post, Yoga: Listening Deeply and Responding Kindly, I wrote about the pressing need for reconnecting with the body and aligning our mental activities with our physical being. As an anecdote to the wildly destructive ‘gerbil-on-a-wheel’ mental chatter, yoga breathing and postures, called asanas, can be powerful and readily accessible tools for quieting both body and mind, bringing them together in this moment for a collaborative relationship. Continue reading “Five Steps to a Healthy Mind-Body Relationship”

Yoga: Listening Deeply and Responding Kindly

My dogs are barking.

My back is singing.

My belly is grumbling.

The body is always talking, rarely at a loss for something to say.  Even the language we use to describe our physical sensations are verbal in nature. We have an innate understanding that the body is communicating all the time. And the body, like a child, is always trying to get our attention. It sends signals, both subtle and loud, whether we are awake or asleep, in an attempt to tell us about our well-being. Continue reading “Yoga: Listening Deeply and Responding Kindly”

What brings you alive?

“… Anything or anyone that does not bring you alive is too small for you.”   David Whyte, excerpt from the poem Sweet Darkness.

“What brings you alive?” a friend inquired recently. What a wonderful question! We were reconnecting after many years and, over coffee, she shared the story of her ‘coming alive’.

Several years ago she realized that the walls of her life were pressing inward. Her world had somehow become smaller when she was not looking. Her daily thoughts were often repeats or left-overs from yesterday’s thoughts. Her routines and actions were familiar enough that she needed to give little or no thought to them and, as a result, spent much of each day on auto-pilot, her mental activity taking her far from her body.  Her relationship was flat and she didn’t even care enough to muster the energy to break it off. She did her work and collected her pay. Each day looked just like yesterday and tomorrow would almost certainly look like today. Her inner world had become just as small as her shrinking outer world. She was bored and numb, no longer actively seeking the interesting or the engaging. Continue reading “What brings you alive?”

The Power of Uncomfortable

“You will either step forward into GROWTH or you will step back into SAFETY.” – Abraham Maslow

I was 25-years old with a budding idea about becoming a professional writer and speaker. The idea was pretty new but it felt delicious and compelling. Just a crazy dream but one that wouldn’t let me go.

Our church hosted Soup Suppers at the time during Lent, a simple gathering for a meal after which a church member shared a bit of their personal story. This was to be my debut, I decided, and signed up for week #3. I was sure this would be perfect. My hair was beautifully coiffed, my best suit was freshly cleaned with an Ascot in the pocket of the red suit jacket, my jewelry, make-up and shoes were just-so. Damn, I looked good. I had written and rewritten my remarks, now neatly typed, double spaced, neatly in a folder. I had practiced several times and, by golly, I was ready!  Continue reading “The Power of Uncomfortable”