What is Yoga 308

Life is a constant struggle of balancing our body on both a physical and emotional side. Through yoga I have learned several life lessons. Yoga 308 is a goal I set for myself to do at least 60 minutes of yoga for 6 days a week for the next year. I invite anyone to join me on this adventure as I blog about some of my daily experiences. This is not intended to show that I have found peace and tranquility, but rather give my honest feelings of my journey. Enjoy.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Day 117 - Opportunity

Today I went to a morning hot power class with Janelle Pochintesta at Orlando Power Yoga.  The class was filled with maybe about 50 people.  There is something that grows on you being in a hot room sweating your butt off with that many people.  I like the feeling that everyone is coming together to try to change something about themselves.  Maybe it's a new body, a peace or mind, a new outlook in life, or to find something new.  No matter what the reason, we all come into class with something.  We stretch to help us grow.  Our bodies become more flexible, but with that our minds begin to stretch too.  We realize we can accomplish new things.  We realize we will fail at some things.  We accept that we may never be able to do some things.  We continue to grow.

Yesterday I practiced at home by myself.  It is what my body was calling for.  It is a chance for me to listen to me.  When I go into a class with 50 other people I loose some of this ability to listen to me.  There is a lot more to shut off in my head, a lot more distractions, and a lot more heat.  I have stressed several times that there are several types of yoga in this world.  You can find the right one for you.

I have noticed life has been presenting a lot of opportunity's in my life.  There is also a direct correlation between the greater the change in my life, the greater the opportunity there is to grow in my life.  I think we often mix up change with lost.  With everything we loose in life though, we gain something new.  Death can bring sadness, but we can also fill our hearts with gratitude and love for the moments we spent with that being.  Just like new birth can bring joy and excitement, but we can also fill our hearts with jealousy or hatred.  It is up to ourselves on how to fill this void.
There is always that something that is asking me to change.  I can choose to ignore it, and stay in the comfort of what I perceive as "the known."  Or I can take on the challenge, dare to go into this new experience and see where it leads me.  The new path or challenge is typically scary, nerve racking, or uneasy.  I can fail at these challenges.  I can succeed at these challenges.  I think for right now though the most important part is to accept and face these challenges.

Today I went into class with a happy attitude.  I was in the moment throughout class and it brought a bigger smile to my face.  It was a great class to be in.

What challenges are you facing today?  Do you have the opportunity to grow?  Accept a new challenge today and watch what

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Day 116 - Live the Movie

Tonight I continued to listened to my body.  Yesterday in class I felt drained.  I ended up kind of going through the motions.  I actually ended up doing a few postures that just felt good to me.  Tonight I did a gentle class at home, and just let my body do the postures it felt like doing.  It is great change from a structured class.  It was a chance to give my body exactly what it is asking for.

I was thinking today.  Movies and music can touch our souls.  Music can have you crying or shaking your booty.  A song may only last 3 minutes, but can instantly switch your emotion.  Movies grab your emotions and can shake them around.  A true good movie makes you laugh, cry, smile, scared (as many emotions as possible).  Movies take about 2 to 3 hours, and we relate with the ups and down of the characters.

Do our frustration in our life stem from our expectations that we feel and see in movies?  Do we expect our emotions to always change as easily as when we hear music.  Have we lost our patience in this world and actually believe that there is a true happy ending and that everything then will be OK?

If you think Snow White and Prince Charming are living out their happy ending, think again.  He is probably fat drinking beer while Snow White is running after their 6 kids yelling at him for being a lazy bum.  10 year later the two are divorced and Prince Charming is remarried after joining an archery club and meeting Princess Beautiful.  Snow White looks deep inside her soul, and after 5 years finds a love so deep she shares it with the world.  She then gets cancer and dies, but leaves behind a legacy of love and giving that her children continue to spread across the world.  Now this to me seems like a more realistic happy ending.  Do not think that we hit that point where we pause and "Live Happily Ever After."  Stop trying to find that happy ending, and realize you are experiencing it right now.

Do you have expectation that once you get something you will find that happy ending?  When you get that girl? find that job? have that child? get that t-shirt?  travel to that exotic place?  I have also been caught up in this game.  The happy ending is not found externally, and there is no "happy ending" inside our souls either.  It is a constant struggle and growing process that is called our lives.

Life is a giant movie.  We live these awesome changes in our emotions and feelings.  When we are down we immediately try to go to that "happy ending".  The thing that we "need" for our happiness.  We sulk on how life is not fair and we deserve happiness.  We do not want to involve ourselves in what is probably the most important of our life's movie.  We should somehow step outside ourselves when we are in our low points in life and realize how much better our movie will turn out because we were able to hit this low. 

How boring would a movie be if it showed us sitting on the couch doing nothing?  We need to get off the couch and experience life.  We all deserve happiness don't get me wrong, but also go through the bad points in life realizing our lows are our chance to grow. 

Send me an email or leave a comment.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Day 115 - Who is watching?

Well today I did feel the 90 minutes of hot yoga I did at Orlando Power Yoga.  Th class was tough, and about 45 minutes into it I felt like I was falling apart.  I started to wonder why I push myself so hard.  Why do I demand so much from myself.  It is one of the great things about yoga.  You can always push yourself to the limit.  You can always stop and take a break.  You can always lay down and take a nap.  The choice is up to you.  I am feeling like my mind needs me to find a gentler side.  I have always been good at pushing myself to the limit.  So my ultimate class would be for me to come in and lay down for 90 minutes and do nothing.  In my eyes this is a great lesson to fight your fears using yoga.

I can picture my ego if I decided to lay there an entire class and how my mind would race with comments and questions about me just laying there being still.  "People are looking at me, expecting me to do something."  "I need to do this, I shouldn't care what anyway around me thinks."  "I wonder if the teacher is pissed that I am just laying here."  I feel like this would be a great thing for me to do, since my ego would care that much.

I think people (me included) like to think that everyone is watching them during yoga.  "Oh I lost my balance  someone must think I'm weak."  "I can do this twist.  I am soooooo awesome."  The reality is, no one is really watching you.  They are probably all too busy wathcing themselves, or thinking that everyone is watching them.  This type of thought process has diminished for me.  I oh this all to practice.

The best is you can take this thought process off of the mat.  People are not watching you as much as you think.  Think of all the time you spend thinking about yourself.  Why do you assume it will differ in someone else mind.  Let's all drop the ego, accept who we are, not try to show off, and enjoy the simple life.

Email or send a comment.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Day 114 - Handstand

Today I was in the Tuesday Dharma class with Kelly Senn at Orlando Power Yoga.  I was sweating quite a bit in this class, but felt really good.  Some days things just seem to click in class.  Life is like that.  If you keep at something you love, eventually things fall into place.

I was very excited to jump into handstand for the first time today.  It was only for about 1.5 seconds, but I felt it.  I felt myself accomplish this posture for the first time.

Just like life, there is always room to grow.  There is always the next posture.  We can stop to critic  ourselves (like me mentioning that my handstand was only 1.5 seconds).  We can also celebrate these moments.  I quite often skip over accomplishments looking for the next step.  "OK, now that I have jumped into handstand I need to hold it longer next time."  These are moments to celebrate in life.  Celebrate your accomplishments.  Be happy for the things you have done.  This handstand was 37 years in the making.

I looked at the people around me in class today.  There are so many different people and stories.  I have seen people who are in there 70's, people with pace makers, or people with replacement hips.  I have seen people who are overweight.  I know an instructor who is over 300 lbs.  There are drug addicts, smokers, x-drug addicts.  People who cannot touch their toes, people who can kiss there own butt.  People who have been abused mentally or physically.

My point with all of this is, if you have a story on why you can't do yoga, you CAN do yoga.  Talking to people about yoga 308, I have heard every excuse on why they do not do it.  This is everyone's first step.  The first step is to get over the excuses and come to class.  I really think today is a great day to start if you haven't yet.  There is a yoga that is made for you.

After 114 days of yoga 308 my body feels very different from when I started.  My tight spots have shifted.  I have new places where I feel tight or sore.  I do not feel any pain in my right knee as when I first started.  I do have a bit of discomfort in my left shoulder.  It is not enough to keep me from doing yoga.  I just pay attention to it, and try to keep from intense work on it when it is not comfortable.  There is a difference between discomfort, pain, and just soreness.  This is something everyone needs to figure out for themselves to avoid injury.  In my mind there will always be something to work through.  The important thing is to figure out how to work through this to be both gentle to myself as well as push myself.

Mentally, I feel very much changed.  It's only been 4 months.  I am excited to do yoga.  I am excited to see where my life is heading.  I am excited to dive deeper.  I am excited.

As always feel free to email me or leave a comment.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Day 113 - My backyard

Steve Rubin taught a good hot ashtanga based class at Orlando Power Yoga today.  I was thinking today that I take both 60 minute, 75 minute, and 90 minute classes, but I never seem to sit and wonder how much time has past by.  Time very rarely drags or speeds through for me in classes.  Today was a good class.

I was thinking of the drive that keeps me going.  I love that yoga is part of my everyday class, but it hasn't always been.  I typically have some type of drive in my life.  Some type of dreams.  When  I was a kid I had dreams of becoming a famous football player.  College I had dreams of becoming a Disney Imagineer.  Out of college I had dreams of traveling the world.  Things constantly change in my life.  Though all my dreams seem to change I have always had this drive in my life.

The thing with this drive is it opens the door to so many other dreams.  I look at when I was a kid in my backyard.  Life was about playing G.I. Joe's and Wiffle ball.  Running around with my family and friends.  The older I got I started to venture off in the neighorhood.  Riding my bigwheel down to my best friends house.  Expanding my horizon..  Then it was onto driving the truck around my little town.  Then expanding further off into college.  Before you know it I was a 3 hours drive from my backyard.  My world had expanded, and I was taking in every bit of it.  After college it was down to Florida.  Then I had to start going by plane to get back to my backyard.  Then I was sent around the U.S. to teach software for work.  I left that job to broaden my horizon even more.  I was off to Europe. 

Now I am sitting in my backyard.  Thinking of the millions of people I crossed paths with, the millions of animals I've encountered.  The love I have shared, the pain I have seen, and gone through.  The girlfriends and wife I have loved, hated, and grew with.  The life experiences that smacked me in the face.  The adventures I have gone through.  Now I am with my dog in my backyard.

What if I never left my backyard?  Would I still be playing Wiffle ball with my friends and family.  Would life be that simple, or would I always question what was on the other side of the fence?  I have always had this drive in me.  Am I driving towards something or away?

In order to balance this I have decided the world is my new backyard.  The universe is my new home.  Regardless of if I am driving away or towards something, my life has expanded.  My life is exactly where I am supposed to be.  The opportunities on the other side of the fence are endless.  Like when I was a kid I want to explore every avenue of my backyard.  I want to laugh, run, cry.  I want to do it all.   This is my drive, these are my dreams, and love is all around us.

How big is your backyard?  Are you trying to view the other side?  No matter how big your backyard may be know that you always can stop and smell the flowers, build a bigger fence, plant a garden, laugh and sip coffee with your loved ones.  Just know that you are exactly where you are supposed to be in this world.  You are the one driving your feelings, emotions, and life.

And no matter how big your backyard is remember to keep it simple.

Email me or comment about your backyard.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Day 112 - Feeling good

I was on set today to help out with a video that my friend Darren Hollander (best chiropractor in Orlando) was shooting.  It was based on yoga for back pain.  I will be sure to post it once it is done with production.   It was fun.  The postures were not difficult, but we had to get in them a few times, and hold them for some time.  Weird to say, but I am thinking I may be sore tomorrow.

I had a moment today driving in my truck where I was listening to a fun song, the windows were down, and everything seemed so beautiful.  I was overly happy and actually cried a bit.  Again it is great to feel good.  I still am noticing this little voice telling me I do not deserve this, but I have figured out a way to help me filter this out.  I wrote about a week ago on how I was going to work on the act of giving (please see Day 104 - Time to give)  I have been loving what I developed.  The act of giving has helped balance out this little voice in my head that is telling me to stop feeling good about things.  Again, I want to keep what I am doing to myself, but believe me, try giving and watch what happens to your life.

This holiday season  stop looking at what you need or want.  Stop saying things like "if I only had."  It is not only money that the universe needs you to give.  You can give time, energy, or love.  Even if you do not celebrate these holidays it is a great time to give to others. 

For the first time in about two months I have felt caught up with my life.  I feel as if I am exactly where I am supposed to be in life.  I do not feel like "I have" to do anything.  I feel that the world is talking to me and I have my ears wide open.   I am on a great journey traveling on my path of hills and valleys.  I am spinning with the world.  I am here.  I am now.

Keep growing, Keep feeling, and Keep it simple.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Day 111 - Hills and Valleys

This morning I woke up and took an early hot class at Full Circle with Christine Northcote.  I wasn't quite awake this morning and my determination was quite there. It was a great way to start off the morning.  Some days I just like to get the yoga out of the way so I can chill the rest of the day.  This was one of them.

I was pretty nervous when I was feeling so good last night.  If you look back on my blogs where I have these mega highs they are pretty much followed by a mega crash.   It is almost like a kid who eats all his halloween candy in one day.  When I start feeling really good, my mind starts to tell me that I do not deserve this feeling.  That there are so many others in this world that work so much harder in life, they give so much more, or they are in so much more need then me.  I start to feel they deserve this type of happiness, and not me.  This is my addict brain still trying to beat me down even after 8 year of sobriety. 

This of course is bull shit.  I do not know how else to emphasis this.  We all deserve this mega high.  We all deserve this great feeling.  And guess what!  We all deserve the bad and crappy feelings too.  We need these hills and valleys.  We need a low point of our life to help us appreciate the high points.  This is human.  It doesn't matter if you live in a hut in Africa or a mansion in New York City.  We all have feelings, desires, and needs.  It is up to us to figure out how to handle this world.

Today, things have been different.  I am still on a bit of a high.  I still have a great outlook on life.  I am still excited for everything.  I am not trying to beat myself down.  I am very appreciative for the way I am handling life around me, and handling the life inside my mind.

I still feel like I am looking for something to focus on, and have found my mind trying to plan for the future again.  This seems to be a pattern where I start to not like where I am, or demand more out of myself.   It is a pattern I am pretty much over, and I do not want to do it any more.  I have ventured into that valley way too many times.  Time for a new one.  The more I stop and just say things like I appreciate where I am, or I know I am heading in the right direction, this frustration fades. 

It is amazing how complicated I can make things inside my own head.  Living is all about hills and valleys.  I am on top of my giant hill right now screaming out to the world.   I feel like I have just kicked into headstand for the first time and nothing is going to knock me down, but my own mind.  I feel in great balance.  I can stay in this headstand as long as I want to.

If you haven't yet I would love to hear from you.  Thank you for everyone that has continued to email me and leaving me comments.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Day 110 - Appreciate

Man, I feel appreciative for my life.  I had a very relaxing day today.  Woke up feeling refreshed and almost like a new person.  I took the day off because I have a "yoga for back pain" video shoot on Sunday that I am doing for my friend Darren.

I was thinking today of a pie chart my friend Dave drew up for me awhile ago that helped me keep perspective of my life.  It was a circle of my entire life.  Looking back I maybe can count about 8 months where I can honestly say I was down in the dumps.  This is such a small sliver in my pie chart of life.  Looking over the many years I have been alive and the years to come, I feel very lucky to have such a great life. I feel like I need to take this opportunity to thank everything that I have gone through in my life.  Everything, everyone, and all the experiences that have brought me here today.

I sometimes get caught up in how sad life can be.  I think we all have the opportunity to stay in a life where we feel like we deserve the universe to behave the way we want it to. To stay in a life of feeling sorry for ourselves.  A life where we get caught up on expectations that people are here to serve, respect, and bow down to us.  This is a road to unhappiness.

The other side of the spectrum is where you love life.  You are here to give to others.  You want to support the world and all living beings.  When you surround yourself with these givers., the people who want to help, want to love, and want to support others, you find this strange conundrum.  If you have all givers someone has to receive.  When you start feeling OK with receiving from these people and still can give without asking for anything in exchange you find this awesome bliss.

I still see people who are soul suckers, manipulators, or need the world to behave like they do.  I still see the sadness in their eyes.  I see people who have no idea that think they are givers, but take all that they can.  I am sad for these people and hope the best for them.  They will always be around me, it is up to me on how I will allow them to be part of my life.

I still have these the world revolves around me feelings.  I  am not saying I am the Jesus of giving.  I do however want to give more and more these days.  Today I am also extremely appreciative to all that has been given to me in my lifetime

I am happy with my dreams, ideas, and thoughts on how the world should be.  I am excited to try to bring the ideas of giving, loving, and respecting the world the way I vision them to be.  I am excited to be the change I want see in the world.  I am also reasonable that I will make mistakes, I will get frustrated, and I will have these "negative" aspects in my life.  There will be more people who take advantage of me.  These are just steps that I need to take in order to continue on the path that I am on.  I am here to represent my vision.

Keep sending those emails and comments :)

P.S.  Remember giving has nothing to do with money

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Day 109 - Thankful

This morning I went to a pre turkey Ashtanga based flow class with Arjun Dhingra.

I do not want to take up a lot of your time today reading this.  Just know that I am thankful for the fact that you have taken the time out of your day to read this. 

Go be with the ones you love and thank them for being in your life.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Day 108 - Yoga Junkie

Today I went to a hot yoga class at Orlando Power Yoga with Reider Howe.  It was a great class today.  I felt good.  My sinuses are not bothering me as much, and I felt pretty strong through out it all.

The thing that has been on my mind lately is how much yoga is needed in my life?  Is 6 days a week something that the mind, body, and soul truly needs?  I am finding myself becoming more and more disciplined through this practice and with my life, but how much discipline is truly necessary? 

I am definilty considered a yoga junkie.  I see people that cannot seem to live without showing up on the yoga mat, but is this truly who I am?  Do I need yoga in order to live my life?  Then I began to realize that yoga IS life.  All these things that I am learning on the mat I am taking off the mat with me.  I am continuing to grow with these lessons.
  • Be gentle to my physical and mental self.
  • Push my physical body and build mental strength.
  • Accept where my body and mind is at this given moment.
  • Push yourself to the limit and find that you can actually go beyond.
  • You will never be the person next to you.
  • Practice every day and discover that everyday is only practice.
  • Breath!!!
  • Find Balance between every aspect in life.  First in your breath.  Then in your mind.  Then in your body.  Notice the balance grows in your emotions and branches even further into the world around you.
  • Be ok that you are angry.  Be ok that you are happy.  Be ok that you are sad.  Be ok that you are loving.
  • Grow into the being that you want to be.
  • Instructors are not your teachers but guides to bring you to who you truly are.  The true teacher in class is you.
You can practice all of this off the mat.  I love being able to practice this with a community of people that are practicing the same thing.  I love that yoga is teaching me so many lessons.  Yes I am a yoga junkie.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Day 107 - Third to First

Please note:  I wrote this blog in third person, but I soon realized that I was talking about my plan to handle the holidays.  I switched it to first person. I changed the word "We" to "I". It is interesting how we project our thoughts or issues onto other people.

Today was the Dharma class with Greg Duke at Orlando Power Yoga.

With the holiday season pretty much here I am trying to manage my time.  I juggle a lot during the holidays.  Family, work, shopping, things get put on the plate and I often put myself aside to allow room for the "important" things in life.  How do I find the time to do what our own self needs?  Why do I find it necessary to put ourselves on hold?  Below is a list of the things I want to keep in my mind while going into these holiday seasons.

Stop and Give to Me:  This is the time of giving, but first I am going to take the time to give to me.  I will find that moment to breath, do yoga, exercise, paint, journal, walk in the woods.  Something that is done totally for me.  If I have the balance and the peace I will be able to give back to the world that much more.

Focus on the Focus: I have been using this a lot in work lately.  My mind can get scattered quite a bit as it tries to do more then it can.  I need to find the things that are important this holiday season and keep focus on these things.

Accept:  Accept that I cannot control the world.  Accept the others around me.  Accept that I am human.  I get so worked up when the world does not go as planned.   I am taking this opportunity to let the world turn the way it wants to and concentrate on the direction I want to turn in the world.  

Give to Give: I am looking forward to a plan that I have to give back to the universe this season.  I want to continue to give to the world concentrating on the focus of  "not asking for anything in return."

I wanted to stay true to this blog.  This is an opportunity to blog about my growth over this year because of yoga.  If I kept this particular blog in third person I feel like I was trying to feel comfortable about my decisions I am making for this holiday season.   How often do we use the words like "we" or "you" when we really mean "I"

Monday, November 19, 2012

Day 106 - Be Honest

Happy Meatless Monday!

I was at the Ashtanga class with Steve Rubin tonight at Full Circle yoga.  My sinuses are still acting up, so I have not felt up to speed tonight.  Overall, I still feel like I am being gentle in my breathing and in my postures.

I am beginning to notice more and more of who I am through all of this process.  Yoga has given me the opportunity to stop, accept, and be me.  We all have one person to answer to in our lives.  We all go to bed and have to live and sleep in our own mind.  We all have that inner voice talking to us.  What is on your mind when you go to bed.

I find the thing that keeps me up at night are things that I have no control of.  I do not have a lot of restless nights, but when I do they are over worries of trying to fix other peoples problems or trying to fix a problem that is not mine to fix.  I feel like I waste time and energy worrying about a lot of things that I can do nothing about.  I watch the world as we worry about so many things that ultimately have nothing to do with our lives.  Things from the past come up in my head or worries of the future.  Where does it get me.  Some may argue that these worries help to make good and proper decisions.  I wonder if these are decisions that need to be made in the first place.

My true peace of mine is knowing that I can live an honest life.  I can go to sleep knowing that I am being honest with myself, my soul, and the people around me.  If I want to build to my sleepless nights I could live a dishonest life.  Something where I fear both the past and the future.  A dishonest life will bring more sadness about my past and worries about my future.

We need to all stay honest with each other, but more important stay honest with yourself.  Only you know what is good or bad.  We are the ones that rest our head on our pillows and dream of something for our future.  You are the only one inside your head.   Be honest about your hopes and dreams.  Be honest that you are not the only dreamer out there.  Be honest that there are dishonest people out there.  Look deep inside your heart and do what is right in this world.  Be the change and be honest.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Day 105 - Rough Seas

I am recovering from a night out on a small cruise ship.  It is amazing what rough waves can do to your insides :)  80% of the time I am fine on boats.  It is just when the sea gets real rough I have issues.  As I spent 3 hours turning my stomach inside out and praying for land again, I began to think how crazy this motion can send my body so out of whack. 

Today I am grateful that the earth is not swaying back and forth, it is still rotating around the sun, spinning, the sun still rises and falls, you know the simple stuff.  I sometimes forget about these things, but I am more then grateful today.

We work on balance in yoga everyday.  We just take for granted that the earth will stay in the same motion while we try to accomplish our own balance.  Shouldn't that make our lives that much more comforting and easy to try to keep our own selves in balance.  Although we sometimes think we should, we do not have to make sure the earth rotates, spins, and we are safe in the rest of the universe.  We are not the soul source making sure everyone is safe, loved, and alive.  This we live in the hands of the universe.  We worry about so many things in this world that we really have no control over.

I am grateful for the universe and the earth keeping their balance.  Keeping life around me in a balance of good and evil, love and hate, happy and sad.  I can accept these lessons around me and try to keep balance inside myself.

Have a good week :)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Day 104 - Time to give

This morning I went to Full Circle Yoga with a wake up hot yoga class with Christine Northcote.  This week I have felt like I have become much more gentle to my soul.  I have felt the urge to go into hot classes where I typically push my body, but I have been taking it easy in these classes.

I feel like the world has been whispering to me this week.  Slow brisk winds trying to communicate to me.   Sending me a message.  It feels good to feel needed in this world.  It feels good to be loved.  I think we all can agree on that.  I have felt that I have isolated myself from the world for a great deal of time.  I feel like it is time for me to once again give back to this world that has given me so much.  I also feel like the ways I choose to give back to the world should only be known by me. 

There was a point in my life where I asked myself if I give something to someone or somebody is it necessary for me to tell the rest of the world?  Am I doing these deeds in order to let people know that I am doing them so they can praise me?  Or am I truly doing this out of the goodness of my heart.  I am going to formulate a plan on giving and make sure it is done for the act of giving, and not expecting anything in return.

Giving can be a very difficult thing.  For me I have felt cheated from giving so much in the past.  I have been abused and taken advantage of my generosity and I needed to step back to make sure I was giving to people that would not use this against me.  There have been people that think that I am here to give to them, and I never drew the line until they had taken everything there is to take.  I needed time to build myself up, but I have learned and I have grown.

To draw a fine line between giving and being taken advantage of is a very tough thing for me.  It requires a new building of trust in both myself and mankind.  Giving comes hand and hand with receiving.  There needs to be an even balance on this or total exhaustion and a lack of inner peace will occur.   I will also need to work on receiving in the future.

"Inner Peace brings fulfillment.  Attain it, and life works.  Give it away, and happiness becomes elusive."

Friday, November 16, 2012

Day 103 - My kind of yoga

Today I went to Full Circle Yoga and took a Yin class with Kristen Schneider.  Total Zen feeling afterwards.

I was thinking today about the many types of yoga out in this world.  Hatha yoga, Ashtanga yoga, Bikram yoga, Dhrarma yoga, Hot yoga, Gentle yoga, Yin yoga, Yin Yang yoga, Flow yoga, Power yoga, Vinyasa yoga, Iyengar yoga, Aerial yoga, Kundalini yoga, and so many more.  Soooo many.

What is the best yoga?  The answer is the one that fits for you.  When beginning I always recommend people to try as many different types of studios, yoga types, and instructors out there. There are several different yoga studio's in Orlando alone.  Each have their own philosophy, and each teacher also has there own way to instruct the class.

I have talked to a lot of people who have told me that they have tried yoga and it is just not their thing.  I often wonder if it just was not their thing because they did not fit the type of yoga.  There are such a large stretch of yoga types out there.

If you are just starting off in yoga, you need to ask yourself what are you looking to get out of your yoga session.  Are you looking to grow into a human pretzel?  Are you looking to find a relaxing moment to yourself?  Are you looking to dive deeper into your soul?  Are you looking to get into better shape?  Are you looking to clear your mind?  Be honest and then be patient.

Be honest, but then also be realistic.  Other than the cheerleaders and gymnast most of us do not have the flexibility when first starting off in yoga.  I have a football background and could not touch my toes when I started yoga.  There are some postures that I was good at, and others that I do not think I will ever be able to do.  One of the biggest accomplishments for a lot of people is to overcome the fear of not being flexible or comparing themselves to another person in the room.  The first accomplishment is always showing up to a class.  The second is to keep coming back.  The biggest life lesson you can take from yoga is that life is about trying and practice.  If you never do yoga you will never become better at it.  Practice, practice, practice.

If you are looking for a basic start up yoga and do not have a lot of physical background or do not like gym's I would recommend starting with yoga's like Hatha, Gentle, or Yin.  If you are always in a gym and love that gym type of atmosphere you should go to Hot yoga or Power yoga.  If you like to go the traditional route and learn about breathing and the same series of postures I would recommend Ashtanga or Dharma.  Please also try all the other types of yoga.  These are just a few I would recommend.

There are so many different types out there.  Do not get discouraged if you do not like the first class you walk into.  Try something else.  There is a yoga that is right for you.

I remember my first yoga class at Prem yoga in West Palm Beach, Florida.  I was in a room full of older women.  I felt intimated by the knowledge and flexibility of these ladies.  I felt a little out of place because of this strange chanting thing they did.  I then listened to Prem.  She guided me into a place where I could stop and focus on myself.  I remember laying down at the end of the class thinking...how long are we supposed to lay here for?  Is everyone sitting here with their eyes shut?  Am I relaxing right?  I also remembering leaving the class with a feeling of a big burden being lifted off my shoulders.  It was my first of many classes.

Do you remember your first yoga class?  What did you like about it?  How did it make you feel.  Send me an email or leave a comment.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Day 102 - Focus on the focus

 I went to the Thursday Dharma class with Kelly Senn at Orlando Power Yoga.  It is a great class to focus on the now.  I still feeling this simple peaceful buzz from the last few days.  I continue to feel appreciation for everything around me.

As I sit here on my laptop with the television on, I begin to look at the things that I do to help me "focus."  My job requires that I am on my laptop quite a bit.  I have found in the past that I can work a lot better if my television is on.  This multitasking way of thinking has aloud me to grow with my career.  It sounds weird, but I think the multitasking focus allows me to not dive too deep into the job and allows me to keep my mind to grow in multiple different types of way.

As I blogged yesterday, I feel like life is filled with a ton of distractions.  These distractions are sometimes really obvious.  They may be thoughts, or ideas, or people around you.  They can be both external or internal.  I have been looking into the distractions that are inside my head.

I am beginning to wonder if my multitasking brain is a distraction. If it is possible to just focus intently in one area.  I have come to grips that my brain is always going to have this rash of complexity, excitement, and almost unease.  I am going to look more into ways that maybe I can harness my focus on certain areas so I do not fall into frustration when I try to take on everything at once.  Yoga plus this blogging has been a great area for me to stop and focus.  Can I bring this type of focus into my everyday life?

I was thinking today on how cool it would be if I could focus like my dog does on a tennis ball.  If you look closely in the picture above the ball is sitting in my lap.  For my dog this is the most important part of life (minus food).  He will be looking for that ball, want me to throw it, find it, catch it, whatever as long as it is with the ball.  For at least 30 minutes every day his focus is on the ball.  Such a simple idea and a simple pleasure.

I began to think further that he does have OCD.  Nothing else matters in his life accept for this tennis ball.  I have seen him play into he has bloody paws.  He has even torn his ACL, but he still ignored the pain.  It was all about the ball. At what point does an intense focus become an obsession?  At what point does it become an addiction?

I think there are times we need to dissect our lives.  Time we need to stop and look to evolve. We need to stay in a constant level of evolution and growing.  Always looking to better ourselves so we can be there for others.  We can grow together.  I think this all starts with focus.  With a very healthy focus.

I am going to try to change my focus skills and see how they can improve.

How is your focus?  Email me or leave me a comment.

Have a good Vegan Thursday!!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Day 101 - Simple Day

I am getting ready to head out to Orlando Power Yoga.  I am in a pretty easy going mood tonight.  It's always days like this that I feel like I am stretching to say something meaningful in life.  These are actually the days that I should appreciate the most.  My mind is not planning my future, it is not looking back to the future...It is just here in the now.  I do not always have something meaningful to say, and that is ok.

I am very appreciative for my life today.  I love the people who are in my life.  I love my job.  I love my horizon.  I am proud of my past.  Life is pretty sweet.

I have felt really connected with the world this week.  I really do believe that nature and the universe are sending messages to us.  It might be through nature, animals, or other people.  I feel like simple things like a flower blooming is the simplest form of communication and lessons that the universe is trying to teach us.  We need to drop our ego and listen. 

Our lives are so filled with so many distractions from these simple signs that we typically do not stop to listen to these simple signs we are constantly being fed.  I feel like we need to get rid of all of our worries and fears that really do not have meaning in our lives.  A lot of our lives are wasted trying to figure out things that we will never figure out.  Trying to find approval from others, relying on the outside world for emotional stimulus, or suppressing our feelings that we are scared of.  Some things we waste because whether we think them or not will not effect our outcome of our day.

We should spend our time listening to nature, allowing ourselves to grow, really feeling our emotions, or filling our heart with love.  Finding outlets to help you grow in this manner.  Then we can release these emotions, growing with others, and giving out our love.

Keep life simple.  The world is talking to you.

I am off to yoga.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Day 100 - Simple Stress

Yeah 100 days of yoga 308!  I kind of forgot until I started to write my blog, but I really did want to celebrate the 100th day of this experience.  I guess this best thing I could have done was forget about it, stay in the present, and do some yoga today.  This is probably my best thing I have learned throughout all of this.  The hardship and trials of living in the present.  Breathe!

My 100th day of yoga 308 was the added Dharma class with Kelly Senn at Orlando Power Yoga.  It was nice to get back into the Dharma series.  I had 4 straight days of Ashtanga so it was kind of nice to switch things up a little bit.  Thank you Kelly for adding this class!

I have been noticing an expression on my face during a lot of my poses where my eyebrows raise up and cause my forehead to tense.  It is almost a concerned look (best way I can describe it).  I feel that I am holding stress in my forehead.  This seems like such a simple thing to change, but I hold this in a lot of poses.  So today I was saying to myself in a lot of poses, "Relax my forehead."

We live our lives to a routine.  If our lives are used to holding stress, it is very hard to change this routine.  We learn to just live our lives with this stress.  Some people actually thrive on this stress or discomfort to get through their daily lives.  It is our bodies and our minds that hold on and decide what to do with this stress.

If we pinpoint where or why we hold this stress we can start to relieve it. We can look to change our ways to try to diminish and lower our stress.  My forehead wrinkle seems like such a simple change.  The more stress we release and diminish in our lives, the more love we can fill those spaces with.  We can then fill the world with the love we all are intended to both give and receive.

Our hearts will always have room to grow.  Do we continue to fear a change and keep our routine?  Or do we start to dissect our lives and look into ways to remove our stress and let our hearts fill more and more with love, happiness, and joy?

It is amazing that after 37 years in this world I just now saw myself holding this stress in my forehead.  Just a reminder that the reflection in your mirror is always changing, and can always grow.  Simple changes in ourselves are where we begin.   These simple changes may be the hardest things to change about ourselves if they have been in our routine our whole lives.  They also may be the key to changing our lives for the better.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Day 99 - Moopy

This is Moopy.  The world lost Moopy to cancer today.  Marianne's dog was such a large part of her life, and I was grateful to have him in my life even if for only 4 months.  He is a great reminder of loyalty, joy, and simplicity.  I am a giant animal lover and I took this pretty hard today.  I can only imagine the feelings that are going inside of Marianne's head.

Today I was very sad, but I also felt this spiritual connection to the earth today.  I felt grateful for all the events that have gone on in my life. I remembered the people that I have had the joy of meeting, loving, and spending time here on earth.  I felt very thankful for all the joy I have in my life.  I was able to stop and listen to the earth, as the wind blew, the trees talked, and we contemplated life.

Moopy was a reminder to me of how the world can connect on such a simple level.  There is nothing like the love between a dog and their owner.  Dogs are always there for you when you are happy, sad, angry, or any other emotion.  They are the true sense of pure love.  They will be there for you until the end.  I can only wish I could have this sense of love a dog has for his owner.

I thank Moopy for the reminder to hold on tight to all the excellent things in this world.  Nothing is permanent, so be happy for the time you get to spend with the ones that are close to you, the ones that love you, and the ones that make you happy.  Keep that happiness close to your heart.  Keep it always in your memory and know that they love you.

Tonight I went to the Ashtanga class with Steve Rubin at Full Circle Yoga.  Moopy was on my mind and I thought of the Buddhist prayer that is often said in yoga classes.

May all sentient beings have happiness and its causes,
May all sentient beings be free of suffering and its causes,
May all sentient beings never be separated from bliss without suffering,
May all sentient beings be in equanimity, free of bias, attachment and anger.

I was fortunate to witness a loving connection between Marianne and Moopy.  It is inspriational for the rest of the world to some day have lived such a loving connection as they did.

Thank you Moopy!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Day 98 - Beryl Bender Birch - Day 3

This morning was the final class with Beryl Bender Birch.  This experience made me very excited for who I am, where I have been, and where I am going.  More important it made me feel very good of where I currently am.  I have learned a lot this weekend on ways to stay in the present.  I know that there will be a lot more times in my future that I loose this feeling, but if feels good to be here at the moment.

This week I have learned a lot about who I am.  You have to love weeks like this.  It's not about who I want to be or who I have been, but rather who I am.  Love this week.

There were a couple of my favorite quotes that came to me this week.  In New Orleans we went into a World War II museum.  I was listening to a documentary and Presidents Roosevelt's famous quote "All we have to Fear is Fear itself."  One of my other favorite quotes is Gandhi's "Be the change you want to see in the world."  These are two completely different type of people, but I am beginning to see a connection in these quotes and people.

Fear is our main barrier between change.  Change is the essence of growth.  If we all lived in isolation our lives would probably have no reason for growth or change, but we all live in the world together.  We need to be the change we want to see in the world.  The beliefs we hold true to our heart.  We have to keep in mind that others may have the opposing views that they hold true to their hearts.  How can we grow together if we all refused to change.  We can fall into a fear of changing into the wrong direction.  We can begin to fear these changes so much we close our minds.  We can stop progress through these fears.

In the last couple weeks a few of my strong beliefs came into question.    I have been sober for 8 years and I sometimes wonder why the rest of the world still have to use drugs and drink.  As I walked Bourbon street in New Orleans, I saw a sadness that I once knew.  People so gone from reality that they were emotionless.  I believe in facing my emotions straight on.  It seems a lot harder and a lot lonelier while walking the sober street.  It seems a lot more natural to face life without using.  I am not here to try to change people into my beliefs, I wanted to use this as an example.

We do things that we know in our own mind is a positive growth in our own personal path of life.   It is very scary to be the change we want to see in the world, but this is the fear we need to overcome.  If the only thing to fear is fear itself, what is holding you back from making that change.

The one change I am making is once again in my diet.  I have still been doing my Meatless Monday's, no coffee Tuesday, and Vegan Thursday (eating while traveling on Vegan Thursday sucks by the way).  I am starting to believe in this movement.  I am not convinced to completely give up these things, but think that if I was to drop it three days out of my week it is better then eating it every day of the week without paying attention to what was going into my body.  I am adding Meatless Tuesday this week.  Oh and I will be eating turkey on a Thursday with my new discipline.  I will just do vegan on Wednesday.   I also want to just give up coffee two days out of the week.  This will be much more relative on how I feel during this day.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Day 97 - Beryl Bender Birch Day 2

This was day 2 of the Beryl workshop.  I somehow got 7:30 on my mind for the beginning of class.  So when I showed up at 7:15 and noticed a class that already started I felt a little embarrassed.  I was surprised on how quickly I pulled myself out of these emotions and just jumped into the routine.  The yoga class was not life changing, amazing, or all inspiring.  It just was.  I do love Beryl's down to earth attitude.  She comes across true and genuine.

Yesterday brought up a lot of solidification for me.  Today I reunited with an old friend which ended up bringing a lot of clarification for me.  It has been a great weekend.  A lot of soul finding (I wasn't really searching so I cannot call it soul searching).

I am realizing I am searching a lot for forgiveness.  I have found a lot of forgiveness for the people that have hurt me in the past. However, I need to forgive myself for some of these events. 
I started to look back at my marriage.  Looking back I compare my marriage much like skydiving out of an airplane.  There is a giant rush that happens right before and during the jump.  The adrenaline fills your body as you free fall from the plane.  There is a sense of fear, excitement, and acceptance as you fall.  There is no time to think of the past or the future, but rather you are just stuck in the now.  Throughout the whole fall there is a sense of trust.  Trust that your parachute will be there when you need to pull it.  That it will open and deploy and land you onto the ground safely.  That the parachute is steady, operational, and reliable.  

My parachute did not deploy.   Splat.  As I sat and picked up the pieces I tried to figure out why my parachute did not deploy.  I could not understand a lot of things.   I wanted answers.  The fact was I do not think there was a parachute in the first place.  The fact was I think I knew there was never a parachute the moment I jumped out of the plane.  Against all warnings, I still jumped.  This is where I lost myself.  I bring up questions on why I jumped without a parachute, why I got in the plane in the first place.  How could I make these big mistakes.  I am just now finding forgiveness for these mistakes.

The thing I am noticing is that it never was a mistake.  It was still me that jumped out of the plane, and I did glide through the sky with such exciting emotions.  I splattered on the ground and survived.  I did all of this life experience without a parachute. There will be another plane.  There will be another parachute. Imagine how much better my life will be with a functioning parachute.  
I have already skydived.  Maybe I will stick with yoga :)

Friday, November 9, 2012

Day 96 - Beryl Bender Birch Day 1

Tonight started the three day workshop with Beryl Bender Birch at College Park Yoga in Orlando.  I have heard a lot of good things about Beryl and tonight she lived up to her repetition.  She provoked my mind quite a bit, and made me feel at ease.  The last 2 weeks I have been going, going, going.  I have felt a giant lack of focus on my part.  My mind has disappeared into the past, and felt frustration of not know about the future.  Beryl helped lead me back to my present.

Beryl brought up the simple question of "Why come to yoga?"  I have dived into this question quite a few times, but it was great to hear others perspective.  "It makes me feel good."  "It helps me focus."  My mind continued to think of the question as I listened to her explanations.  

If I look back at how I would have answered "Why do yoga?"  10 years ago it would have been completely different as what I would answer today.  In fact, if I was to try to answer this question yesterday it would probably be different then what I would answer today.  My answer constantly changes.  Today though it is about accepting change.  Accepting that I have and will continue to loose and gain people in my life.  Accepting that I will love and hate.  Accepting that my body will be balanced one day and off the next.  Accepting that life will constantly change.

I left the class feeling extremely grateful.  I was grateful for everyone in my life.  The people who hurt me brought me to who I am today.  The people who have been there for me.  I realize that I am a very giving person.  That I have spent my energy so much in the past trying to help others with their insecurities that I lost who I was.  I changed who I was to make people feel more comfortable.  I in fact stunned my growth, sacrificing it in hopes to build their happiness.

I realize the great people I have in my life.  People that want to watch me grow.  They support my lifestyle and can't wait to see what I do next.  I am able to help them through their bad days, as they help me through mine.  We grow together in hopes that we all grow into better people.  I do not have to ask these people to give as they already do.  I feel very grateful for these people in my life and will continue to give back to them.

I also have been reading www.thedailylove.com I find a lot in common with Masin who writes a great blog.  He recently was writing about focus and how his mind has a Hyper focus.  Where he can concentrate on one thing intensely for a short period of time.  Then he moves onto the next thing to focus on.  He needs to manage his space in time to make sure he stays on his path.

I have been noticing that when I start feeling this overwhelming funk as I have had in the last couple weeks, I am lacking a focus.  Also, if I want to focus on something and constantly get thrown off this focus I seem to have trouble.  I feel completely aligned with the now today.  I feel like I have a pretty good grasp and focus on the present. 

Tomorrow the workshop picks up again at 7:30 so I am off to bed.

Thank you to all of you in my life that help me realize who I am, help me grow, and love me for me.  
Much love tonight - Danny :)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Day 95 - Tell the Story

I am on my way back from New Orleans.  I am taking the day off today because I have a three day yoga workshop Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in Orlando.  This trip overall was a lot of fun.  The people here are great, and the city always has a feel that is unlike any other.  I saw a lot of happiness on the people working around town (not talking about drunks on Bourbon Street, although they were happy too).  It was a good experience.

During this trip I was surrounded by a lot of "Sales" people.  The typical car salesman that will spit anything out of their mouth to get a sale.    I was also very grateful to weed through these people and find true human beings.  If your main focus in life is to sell to me, I no longer have any room in my life.  I am not only talking about selling products, I am also talking about people who sell their story.

I am a firm believer in "telling your story" and not "selling your story".  We all want to live great lives and several of us (me included) like to have a bit of attention brought to them.  I think there are a few different ways we can bring attention to our lives.

"Telling your story" is more of a sharing.  You are interested in talking to the person and relating to other people by telling your story.  "Selling your story" is using your story to get more from others.  It is when your insecurities start to come up.  You are using your story in hopes that people will like it and give you the emotions you are seeking.  The really good sellers will start sucking your emotions out of other people.  They thrive on other emotions which we all know will leave you empty when you are eventually alone.  We have all used these story telling methods at one time or another.  I am making more and more of a shift toward the "telling the story"

How do we start leaning towards the "telling of the story?"  I think step one is to start listening.  The seller is so anxious to speak, he is busy thinking what he is going to say next rather then stopping and listening on what the other person is trying to express.  It is the most basic of the concept of giving and receiving.  If we are too busy talking or thinking about talking we are not listening. We are always giving, and never opening the opportunity to let in new ideas in.  We are in sense stopping our opportunity of growth.

If we can't listen to others, maybe a better place to start is on the yoga mat.  This is where we can stop and listen to the world around you.  Notice that your brain is still constantly trying to bother you.  The little voice inside of you is telling you to take a break, quit, thinking of what you are doing after class, or what has happened before class.  Stop...Listen.  Listen to your breath, listen to the instructor, listen to the breath around you.  Practice listening. 

At the moment I am pondering a silent retreat.  This seems extremely scary to me. 

Feel free to leave a comment or email me.  

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Day 94 - Just live

It was a long day here in New Orleans.  It started off with another early gentle hotel yoga for me.  Again, another opportunity to listen to my body and let things flow.  The hour flew by pretty fast, and I felt like my body wanted to keep going, but I had to go about my day.  It is late at night since we were out at the Hornets game and then nightlife on Bourbon street, so this will be a pretty quick blog.

There are a lot of days that I want to write up something very important and life changing for people.  There are days when I words come so easily to my mind it is fun to blog.  There are other days that I have so much going on during the day it is the last thing I want to do.

My mind is constantly wanting the next thing, to try my best, to keep going.  Tonight is a great opportunity to stop and live in the moment.  It was a great night!

If you are looking for advice from this blog today...STOP, and then just live.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Day 93 - Come together

Hello from New Orleans.  I did hotel yoga this morning in my room.  It is nice to stop, listen to my body, and just go through the flow.  I would love if my mind, body, and soul always moved as easy as it did this morning. I did not push things, I did not wait for action, and I let my mind control my movements.  Life seems so simple that way.

I bought this little voodoo doll shown above today.  OK I am a tourist, but I think it is really cool.  It is a protector from spirits and nightmares.  Some people look at this a creepy or scary.  Other people see it as a good luck charm.  This little charm made me think of how our views differ in this world.  If this charm is haunting to you then you probably have some other charm that is very special to you.  That charm is probably haunting or not understood by others.

If you do not see the same view as others how do you try to understand this view?  We all have things that we are very passionate about.  Some of these things are as little as the type of cleaning supplies we use, the type of food we put in our body, or the amount of tv we watch.  Other things are bigger in our life like the religion we choose, the morals we take, or the love we receive or give.

What do we drop?  What do we keep close to our heart?

If you keep all of your views and do not try to understand anyone else you loose any opportunity to grow.  You stay stagnant.  If yo feel the need to control others in hope that you can secure your own views, you need to stop and ask yourselves why these views are so important to you.  Is there underlying insecurities that make you feel the need to put your focus on someone else?

To me I ask what is really that important for me in the long run.  Is my life going to be that much different if I use Windex versus an organic, all natural, non stick, ultra cleaner?  There are a lot of things that would let go to allow someone else to feel comfortable and happy.  We all have to go through realizing how little these type of things do not matter in the long run.  I typically use a Natural glass cleaner only because the people I have around me are passionate about it.

The downfall with this  thinking is the controlling people can take advantage of this type of personality.  We all have the ability to have free thinking.  We cannot allow our lives to be taken control, because we keep dropping our views to make others feel comfortable.

These thoughts begin with the little things.  They start with little charms, cleaning supplies, or TV.  They start on our yoga mat.  Finding balance in our life.  Allowing new things, allowing love, allowing the now. 

Find your balance, then find balanced individuals who also are always looking for their own balance.  People who are not looking to control your views, but rather want to learn from your views, love you for your views, and let you view the world as you want to.

Congrats Obama.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Day 92 - In New Orleans

Nothing to do with yoga (or does it ).  I needed to show the painting I did yesterday

Happy Meatless Monday :)
This week I am once again on the road.  This time I am in New Orleans.  I was able to get to yoga first thing this morning with a good power class with Marilyn Glasser at Full Circle yoga.  It was a great way to wake up before getting on an airplane and help me stay out of the funk.  She does a good kick ass class that made me feel very good about where I was and how I was practicing. 

I did notice in my class as well as probably a lot of classes that I hold this tension in my forehead.  It is a wrinkled almost surprised look that makes me look almost concerned or worried.  I want to figure out a way to relax this during class.  I felt very stable this morning and went through the motions with a pretty positive thought process.

I did throw myself into a loop today when I started to think about traveling.  I really love to travel, and there is a big part of me that wants to take off and just go.  This brought up the whole thing that I feel unsettled, and I started to over think this concept again (as I have done a lot in the last few months).  I talked to Marianne about it and decided I was heading no where with the topic.  I will continue to travel, but do not have to have specifics at this moment.  The only thing I HAVE to do is be me.  Be who I am now, live, love and keep truth and honesty in my heart.

I am off to bed as I have a long day tomorrow.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Day 91 - What is Yoga? Revisited

Orion found this white feather for me.  Beauty is in the air.

It is my day off, and a much needed one.  I have been playing mind games with myself all week, but feel a bit more settled today.  I am getting a chance to clear some of my clutter, literally and figuratively.  I was able to sit and organize my house a bit and get some painting done.  This has aloud my mind to settle.  I wonder how much these two are connected.

Orion and I were walking this morning when we stumbled upon this white feather (please see day 61 - the white feather).  To me the white feather is a symbol that I am on the right path.  So as this week brought up emotions of sadness, depression, anger, and frustration, I am reminded this will not be the last time these emotions will come up.  I am looking for the honest approach to let myself feel these emotions and not be ashamed or embarrassed if they do come up.  These are releases that my body and mind need to get out and once again try to secure that peaceful and loving feeling.

I often bring up the question.  What is Yoga?  This is always going to be an unanswered question, as it means something different for everyone.  It also is hard to answer because it also changes a lot with me.  Lately yoga has been a lot on my mental side of things.  I am able to accept the fact that I cannot do the splits, but I am unable to accept the fact that I have "negative" emotions.  I am able to accept the fact that I have tight hamstrings, but I cannot accept the fact that I am not constantly in the now.  I am very demanding on myself and yoga gives me the opportunity for acceptance.  I am just now starting to realize this.  I would love to be able to say I have figured this out, but I am not here to tell you about all the things I am great at.  I do get frustrated that I have not figured out this acceptance yet (see how I drive myself nuts)

I am thinking if I was to take a yoga class where I do only postures that I am not good at, my mind would start focusing on the fact that I am not good at these postures.  This is how my mind and a lot of others work.  I focus on the aspects I can improve, never satisfied with the present, and always striving to move onto the next thing.  Whats next?  Whats next?  I gotta do this!  I gotta do that!  I do not like to accept things.  I am working on this acceptance.  I do get frustrated that I have not figured out this acceptance yet (see how I drive myself nuts). Yoga is my path to finding peace with this mind.

Stop, Relax, Let life happen.  Feel your emotions move through you.  Feel Love, Feel Sadness, Feel Anger, Feel Happiness.  These are all a part of your life.  When we start to supress this emotions they will come back up sometime and more then likely will effect you, your environment, and the people around you.  Live like a human, and keep life simple.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Day 90 - Go through the motions

Somedays you should sit like a king :)

This morning I woke up still in the funk.  No reason, it's just there.  I would love to say I woke up happy and joyous and I figured it all out, but I didn't.  On these days I wake up down, I seem to fight my way out of it by the end of the night.  I am finding it fascinating that I seem to be going through the same things throughout my days, but this week was frustrating while last week was fun.  Could it be all in my head, my diet, my surroundings, one simple butterfly effect?  Is it the fact that I look to far into all of these things?

Yesterday I found comfort in the Yin class with Kristen Schneider at Full Circle Yoga.  It was a gentle practice that has been much needed for my soul this week.  Today I was just going through the motions at yoga.  I was there, but my mind and body really did not want to be there.  I went to Steve Rubin's Ashtanga class at Full Circle Yoga.    I started to think thoughts like...  Is it the yoga that is wearing me down, or is it my life leaves me drained in yoga?  I did not challenge myself, rather I just did all the postures.  What if I never pushed myself to the limit?  Is pushing myself more or less helpful in my life?

The best thing that Steve did for me today was at the very end of the class I was sitting and meditating.  He came over and gave me a quick adjustment straightening my posture and said "Stay Proud."  It was such a simple thing to say, but it was what I needed to hear this morning.  

I feel like I do not like to give myself credit.  I do not like to say I am proud of my accomplishments.  Times like this week I like to sit back and look at my faults.  I need to push myself for some reason.  I need to keep moving forward.  Days like today where I just go through the motions, I do not feel like I accomplish anything.  I am so demanding on myself, and do not like to waste time.

I am learning.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Day 89 - Fight the Funk?

I woke up this morning still in a funk.  I remember writing awhile back on how it is so much easier to wake up with a positive outlook in life then it is to wake up depressed.  If you wake up depressed you have to figure out a way to regain your balance and try to get onto that much desired positive path.  There are days though like today that I wake up in the funk.  Now what???

I think of television and shows like Oprah where she is a positive source of inspiration for so many people.  The thing I do not enjoy about these programs is I never see Oprah sad, upset, angry with her personal life.  It is always inspirational or overcoming stories.  I really wish I would see the true Oprah.  The one that is human.  I think we are brought up to think that depression, sadness, anger, and other emotions should not be in our lives at all.  If these feelings come up then we need to come up with some approach to quickly fix it and get back to our positive way of thinking.

I was reading this morning how these "negative" emotions are trying to get out of you.  That the original and true emotions of our lives is indeed love, happiness, and joy.  Throughout our lives we manage to find theses negative locks and if we do not allow them to properly go through our body we store them. 

We all have said things like this one time or another..."I need to suck it up so I can go to work."  "This person needs me, I can't show him I am sad."  "I shouldn't feel angry, my life is great."

These are all ways we store these "negative" emotions.  "Negative" emotions are a part of our lives.  I keep putting the word negative in quotes because to me it is almost a positive part of life.  It is what helps us keep balance, love, happiness, and joy.  The more we lock up the harder it is to get rid of these negative emotions.  We start to fear and become afraid of our negative emotions.  If you think of your body as a white flowing light of positivity from our toes to our head.  eventually some negative light will flow in there.  It does hurt when this "negative" energy flows through"  If we push is down and lock it, it will begin to cut off that flow.  If we really lock it eventually the positive energy will push it through.  With all these locks it hurts that much more.  I feel the more and more we lock up these negative energies it will not only hurt us that much more years later, but also we will forget how to deal with these "negative" thoughts or energies, and will drive us to more negativity.

Yesterday and this morning I was crying.  Society may look at this as a weakness, but I bring this up because it is rather a strength.   I am indeed pushing through some locked up "negaitvity"  To me I am getting this out of my body.  I am needing the space for positive emotions.  I have made a lot of positive changes in my life.  Anyone can play the always inspiring person on television, but to me this is not human.  Be real!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Day 88 - Overthinking Worrier

Happy Vegan Thursday!

Today I went to Dharma yoga with Kelly Senn at Orlando Power Yoga.  She started teaching a little bit of Series 3 which was pretty fun.  She also is now offering it twice a week which I am very pumped for. 

I honestly have been having a bit of an issue getting excited for yoga and blogging since I have returned from Denver.  I am not sure exactly what it is, but I am trying my best not to over think it.  I am definitely an over thinker.

My brain and emotions have been going pretty much all over the place today.  I wish people could sometimes slice my brain open to see all the things that go on inside of there.  I am not sure when it became so complicated.

I think I spend a lot of time worrying in life.  I worry that I am running from something, trying to escape, or how I am going to be perceived in certain areas.  I worry about not having enough money, not doing the right thing, or emotionally hurting somebody.  I can worry myself and over think things a little too much.

I also feel like I go out searching for answers. Some questions do not have or even need answering though.  I can however sometimes keep searching for these answers.  I would love to keep searching for answers in hopes that one day it might be able to be summarized in one word.

In other words...My brain is my worst enemy.  My thoughts are the only true thing that causes me stress.  They are the only true thing stand in my way.

Yoga is very important to me, but I am very tired of it this week.  I am dragging.  My right hamstring hurts,  my left shoulder is hurting, and emotionally I feel a bit drained.  I am trying my best to pick myself up and have fun again.