Welcome to the first Monday of the fall season. It's Kind of hard to believe it, but it's here! While we are sad to say goodbye to those endless days of summer we are also excited about this transition to the next season. So, for today's #MindfulnessMonday we want to talk about transitions.
For some reason, most of us are uncomfortable in periods of transition whether it be the seasons, circumstances of our lives, or even on our mats. We all want to feel settled rather than feel like we are in a state of in-between, but the truth is, we need that in-between to get where we are going. Take our yoga practice for example. There are times when we want to rush from one pose to another instead of taking our time to change shapes. But, when we do rush, we are more likely to stumble on our way, maybe even fall, or worst case injure ourselves. And, we end up missing parts of the practice and the full expression of the asanas. And it is the same for life. Sure, it can be unsettling to transition from one job to another and feel uncomfortable leaving one place and beginning a whole new experience. But, if we rush through it we can be more likely to forget things or to make simple mistakes.
So, at this beginning of the fall season, try to enjoy the transition. Enjoy trading in your tank tops for jeans jackets, enjoy breathing in the crisp air and enjoy all the feelings - good, bad, unsettling - that come with it. This change is going to happen anyway, so why not make the most of it, right?
Have a beautiful week.
Happy Monday. We hope you all got exactly what you needed out of your weekends and that you are ready for the week ahead. For today's #MindfulnessMonday, we want to talk about mantras. Now, we know, the idea of a mantra can seem intense. We often think of a mantra as this big huge thought or idea that we take with us in our lives. But, in reality, a mantra can be as simple as a word or even a sound.
We like to use mantras in our meditation and asana practices, as well as in our everyday life. An example of a mantra can be as simple as the words, "let go". In a meditation practice, we would focus on inhaling the word, "let" and exhaling the word, "go". In an asana practice, we can keep those words present in our minds as a reminder to let go of our expectation of a pose, let go of how we think we should do it, or how we used to do it. In everyday life, we can keep the idea of letting go in our minds in moments where we feel ourselves stressing over something that is out of our control, or if we notice ourselves trying to plan 10 steps of where we are right now.
We could choose to go back to the same mantra day after day, practice over practice, or we can choose something new every single time. We tend to like to mix it up depending on our mood and what we feel we need in a given time. Other mantras we like to play with are, "trust the process", "be joy", "be free", "be open", "smile", "light", "length", "space". The options are truly endless and all that matters is if it resonates.
So, this week, we would love to encourage you to find a mantra that resonates with you and try and use it on your mat, at your desk, or on your commute. Explore how it feels to have a focus and see if it can be a centering force.
Have an amazing week,
We are already almost halfway through September, can you believe it? As much as we love the summer months, there is always something about September's back-to-school vibe that is inspiring and exciting. It feels fresh and new and even though we are no longer in school, it feels like the start of a new year. So, in the spirit of September, for today's #MindfulnessMonday topic we would like to talk about going back to basics.
Most of the time, we are thinking about our next step forward be it in our profession, in our relationships or on our mats. And that's great. We believe it super important to build and evolve and grow. But, sometimes in order to do so, it is important to take a second and assess our foundation and go back to basics. We can get so caught up in our progress and in the more advanced things we are doing that we can forget about the fundamentals.
In the context of our asana practice, it is so easy to get ahead of ourselves. We can get to the point where we are so used to always going for that full vinyasa or that full bind that we can forget the fundamentals of the posture. And, when we forget that, our breathing, our form and the overall integrity of our practice can suffer.
So, this September, we encourage you to go back to the basics. Take this month and let it be a refresher, so that you can take on the "new" year with a strong foundation, ready for new challenges and adventures.
Happy Monday! We hope you had a wonderful weekend and are excited for the week ahead. Today's #MindfulnessMonday theme is patience.
There is no denying, nor avoiding that our world is fast paced. With more and more technology and social channels. we have come to expect almost everything to be immediate. We are a generation that not only wants, but expects everything instantly because so much has become possible with the tap of a finger. Unfortunately, not everything is instantaneous. In fact, we would argue that some of the most important parts of our lives are not. Most things take time, growth and yes, patience. And for most of us, we are most impatient with ourselves. How many of us have ever thought, "I have been practicing yoga for years now, my crow pose should be way better than this!" Or, "I have been meditating for months and my mind still wanders!" Or, "my new company is doing great work, why hasn't it really taken off yet?"
We're always looking for those big moments, those milestones where we can declare success. Although it's great to strive for those, we have to recognize that it will take time to get there and that the key to success is actually balancing ambition with patience.
Sogyal Rinponche sums it up pretty well with this quote, "Again and again we need to appreciate the subtle workings of the teachings and the practice, and even when there is no extraordinary, dramatic change, to persevere with calm and patience. How important it is to be skillful and gentle with ourselves, without becoming disheartened or giving up, but trusting the path and knowing that it has its own laws and its own dynamics."
So, as hard as it may seem at times, be patient with yourselves. Try to trust the process this week.
Samara Zelniker is a yogi, wine drinker, pet lover and travel junkie.