Today, I discovered a new yoga memoir to add to my summer reading list. It’s called Yin, Yang, Yogini by Kathryn E. Livingston, an author, blogger, and yoga practitioner. Livingston’s memoir discusses how yoga transformed her life and taught her how to surrender and release the past and fear while living and trusting the present moment. I eager to read her book to learn more about her journey and how she faced the death of her parents, anxiety, breast cancer, and her children growing up and moving out of her home with yoga. Click here to learn more about Livingston and her Liv Write! blog.
Are you reading any yoga-inspired books this summer?
Mantras have been a part of my yoga practice for the past 10 years. Mantra is a Sanskrit word that means mind protection. It is a sacred word, sound or chant repeated during meditation to promote inner peace and facilitate transformation of your consciousness. Last week, I started Deva Premal & Miten’s 21-Day Mantra Meditation Journey to continue the work I have been doing to strengthen my meditation practice. The 21-Day Mantra Journey started on May 14 and offers a free, daily guided session. Click here to learn more.
Do you use mantras in your meditation and yoga practice?
It’s National Women’s Health Week, an annual health celebration I have used to recommit to my wellness commitments over the past decade. Practicing yoga on and off the mat is one of my wellness commitments that started in 1995.
I came to yoga as a 30-year-old runner, Type A legal and finance professional, artist, and writer who needed to release stress, stretch my body, and focus my mind. Child’s pose and downward facing dog were my favorite poses. They still are as I live my life as a 49-year-old (approaching 50 in December) artist, author, creativity coach, digital communications professional, and yoga teacher.
Side twists and savasana (final relaxation) pose also became some of my favorites during my yoga teacher training at Flow Yoga Center in 2005.
When you started practicing yoga, what were your favorite poses?
For the past two weeks, I’ve been using Oprah & Deepak’s Finding Your Flow 21-Day Meditation Experience. Click here to join the Meditation Experience (it’s free)! Thus far, it has helped me develop a better understanding of my third chakra which governs the solar plexus, digestion, power, courage, and determination. Yesterday, I made a Spring collage series I plan to use to stay focused on my third chakra and yoga practice (see photo above).
What are you using to help focus your yoga practice this spring?
Last week I started Oprah & Deepak’s Finding Your Flow 21-Day Meditation Experience. I am using the 21-Day Meditation Experience to deepen my home yoga and meditation practice. So far, it has helped me connect with my seven chakra energy centers and the flow of my Shakti energy (also known as prana, chi or life force) in my body, mind, spirit, heart, and breath. Click here to join the Meditation Experience (it’s free)!
The first seven days of the Finding Your Flow Meditation Experience introduced the foundation of each chakra with powerful affirmations. I used them to as guides for my daily yoga practice. See them below.
Day 1 – Root Chakra
Day 2 – Sacral Chakra
Day 3 – Solar Plexus Chakra
Day 4 – Heart Chakra
Day 5 – Throat Chakra
Day 6 – Third Eye Chakra
Day 7 – Crown Chakra
Today I had an opportunity to share what I discovered about myself through the meditation experience during my Spring coaching session with my life coach and yoga teacher, Yael Flusberg.
One of the things I appreciate and enjoy about Yael’s coaching approach and practice is that she supports her clients in cultivating a holistic, healthy, and balanced lifestyle. It is based on yoga as a life philosophy and lifestyle. Yoga is a Sanskirt word that means union of your spirit, heart, mind, body, and life. I call Yael’s coaching approach and practice the “Yael Flusberg Method” which invites you to define, explore, and integrate healthy attitudes, habits, and self-care practices into your life (business, career, creativity, digital experiences, finances, health, home, leisure, relationships, and volunteer service).
Today I started my morning yoga practice with Oprah & Deepak’s Finding Your Flow 21-Day Meditation Experience. I am using the 21-Day Meditation Experience to deepen my home yoga and meditation practice. It will help me connect with the flow of my Shakti energy (also known as prana, chi or life force) in my body, mind, spirit, heart, and breath. Click here to join the Meditation Experience (it’s free)!
The theme for Day #1 of the Meditation Experience is “Finding Security.” While standing in the Mountain or Tadasana pose, I used today’s affirmation as a mantra: “My security and peace are within.” It stayed with me all day!
What is the focus of your Spring yoga and meditation practice?
Last week, I won a fantastic bag of yoga treats from the Smithsonian’s Sackler Gallery. The giveaway was held as a part of the “Yoga: The Art of Transformation” exhibition and sponsored by Whole Foods Market. My yoga teacher and mentor, Debra Mishalove, founder of Flow Yoga Center, selected the yoga treats.
They included a Gaiam Metro bag (I’ve been craving one of these bags since early last year), Sesame Oil (just what my skin needed), the latest issue of ORIGINS magazine (yummy reading for February), dried white sage smudge sticks (perfect for cleansing my “chakra castle” home), Nag Champa incense (adore it… great for my morning and evening yoga/reiki practices), raw almonds and cashews (lovely winter snacks), a Whole Foods bag (something to carry my groceries in), Mineral Fusion Nail Polish (my niece Jordan claimed the polish), and a $100 Whole Foods gift card (awesome…. since I love to drop by on Saturday mornings after my Kundalini yoga class for oatmeal and green tea).
Many thanks to the Sackler Gallery and Whole Foods!
This month, I am infusing Digital Wellness moments into my yoga practice. Just in case you wanted you know, I define Digital Wellness as “a gift you give yourself to help manage your time online with mindful self-care practices. Mindful self-care practices encourage you to slow down, become aware of how you spend your time online, and identify and take small steps towards having a healthier digital life. Examples include breathing exercises, journaling, massage, meditation, physical movement (walking, running, yoga, and aerobic classes), rest (naps and a good night’s sleep), setting time boundaries, and using time management tools (HootSuite, TweetDeck, and an editorial calendar) to schedule your blog and social media posts” (excerpt from my new book, Digital Sisterhood: A Memoir of Fierce Living Online). Click here for tips on creating a Digital Wellness plan.
Sandy Blaine’s Yoga for Computer Users is a guiding force in my daily yoga practice. Blaine’s book offers illustrated yoga poses and breathing and relaxation techniques that can help you take better care of your neck, shoulders, wrists, and hands. The beautiful thing about the poses and breathing and relaxation techniques is that they can be done at home or in the office. I love the book because it gives you lifestyle suggestions and mindfulness practices that encourage you to unplug from your digital life, make more time for joy in your daily schedule, learn to alternate your mouse hand, and more!
Are you using any yoga poses to take care of yourself while you are online?
Have you created a Digital Wellness plan? What does it include?
Visit Amazon.com to learn more about Digital Sisterhood. It is available for purchase on Kindle and as a paperback and hardback book.