Saturday, April 25, 2009

What makes you come alive?

One of my favorite quotes is by Howard Thurman, "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."

I am so grateful to have spent the week doing many things that make me come alive! I held the first Women's Wellness Circle! I taught yoga to both adults and children. I played legos with my niece. I attended my first meeting of the Main Street Business Association as a soon-to-be business owner. I watched Gilmore Girls with my daughter. I gave a yoga talk and demonstration in the beautiful Main Gallery at the Niagara Arts & Cultural Center. I savored a glass of wine from this amazing winery while watching Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice with my hubby. I enjoyed ice cream with my family on a beautiful afternoon. I got a pedicure. I took in a play put on by a local theater group (Steel Magnolias). much deliciousness!!! For me, just last year I spent most of my time doing things that did not make me come alive, to say the least. It is amazing how quickly life changes when you ask yourself, "What do I want?" Not what should you do. Not what other people would like you to do. Not what you have to do. Simply what you want to do. What makes you come alive.

Believe that your dreams are possible and head toward them. I promise you won't be disappointed!!!

Picture above is of my yoga studio (gorgeous chalk murals courtesy of my sister)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

you get what you need

"you can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, well you might find you get what you need!" ahh...the wisdom of the Rolling Stones...gotta love it.

i'm here at home, making my way through another self-imposed 12-hour work day saturday which i am half enjoying, half resenting. things were mostly going fine until i started down the path of self-doubt...a frequent habit of mine lately...ugh...

i decided to allot myself a break to blog-browse and i came across exactly what i needed to read/ hear/ know at this moment.

tomorrow i am holding the first women's wellness circle! i am completely pumped about this, as i have been dreaming up this idea for quite some time, but i am also nervous because i want it to go well. perfectly, actually. i want all of the women to feel relaxed and inspired by the two hours we will spend together doing yoga, meditating, journaling, and talking. is this too much to ask?

ha, ha, ha, ha! i am laughing at myself now (in a loving manner). of course i cannot please every person that comes to every program/class that i ever hold. that is ridiculous! the best i can do is plan ahead (which i have spent a ton of time doing), show up, and be myself. right? i mean it's hard to go wrong with yoga, meditation, and journaling. i'm not sure how you could not feel relaxed and inspired after two hours of that. so, i will remind myself to trust the process, to stay strong in my belief in this idea of women gathering, exploring, and growing.

here's to following your heart and believing in yourself!
ps that's my fur-baby monty in the picture above, he loves to walk all over everything i am working on :-)

Monday, April 13, 2009


Yesterday I attended an amazing yoga class complete with live cello music! It was absolutely delicious...

While guiding us through a wonderfully challenging vinyasa, the instructor was talking about renewal and how we have to "die a little" to be "reborn." This theme keeps coming to me lately, in various forms. First the yoga class. Then Brenda Stanton discussed it today in her weekly email. She talked about how you have to give up part of who you are today to fully become your true self and realize your dreams. Add in the fact that is Spring is slowly arriving here and I cannot help but consider what renewal means for me as I'm going through this very life-changing kind of time.

I think it is comforting to keep in mind that in order to grow or change we have to go through some discomfort/death/sacrifice. It makes me feel like the discomfort is meaningful. That it is a sign that I am on the right path. Right now I am in a place where I feel extremely grateful and excited that I am turning my dream of opening a Wellness Center into a reality. At the same time I feel completely overwhelmed almost every time I stop and consider exactly what it is I am doing. Quitting my job. Giving up my paycheck, health benefits, retirement fund. In a really scary economy where most people are just happy to have a job. Taking on responsibility for every single facet of running a business. I start to think, "Holy crap! I am crazy! Who do I think I am to try and pull this off?" {This is sometimes the point where I start crying.}

How long I engage in this train of thought varies from day to day, but eventually I always remind myself to stop and take a deep breath. I remind myself of my awesome family that is always there for me. I think of the other challenges I've overcome in my life. I remember that everything is just falling into place way too beautifully for this not to be exactly what I am supposed to be doing with my life right now.

So I'm working on embracing the discomfort. Thinking of it as natural and beautiful, a part of the whole changing/growing process. Trying to remember to breathe, to soften into the challenge, like I might during my 6th breath in Plank pose.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

I Heart Today

I heart today! It is almost over so I wanted to pause a moment and give a shout out to this awesome day. Nothing spectacular happened per se; it was just an ordinary wonderful day!

I woke up around 8:30 this morning, which I find is a great time to get up! It is early enough that the day is not wasted, but late enough that I feel like I was treated to a sleep-in. My hubby brewed some coffee while I studied for my licensure exam. I completed a few other tasks, including finishing all my pro forma income and cash flow statements for the new business before noon! Then I freshened up and headed to my studio for a lovely yoga class. Afterwards I was on the hunt for Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs (an Easter must-have) and a small gift for my daughter (I got her a special edition magazine all about Michelle Obama - she is going to love it).

I headed home to find my dear husband demolishing our kitchen (we are starting a new install next week). He gladly plugged the microwave back in for me so I could enjoy a black bean and rice burrito for lunch, extra hot sauce of course. After lunch, I followed up with some women for the Women's Wellness Circle that is starting next week. I am soooo excited as I have been dreaming up this project for a long time and I think it will be a beautiful experience for everyone involved! I also spent some time putting the final touches on my plans for our first circle next week.

Then I went over to mom's to sew ( her sew) a few eye pillows for some donation baskets I'm working on for the studio. I also brought along this very fun furry pink zebra material I had picked up a few weeks ago and she helped me create a scarf out of it! After we were done sewing the husbands were getting hungry so we headed out for a Chinese buffet dinner, complete with ice cream! After dinner, we went back to mom's so I could cook up some vegetarian curry for Easter dinner tomorrow and enjoyed a glass of wine while the yummy curry smell filled the house.

I got home around 10pm and decided to take a refreshing hot shower.....ahhh! Afterwards, I treated myself to some homemade lavender lotion (read: I mixed lavender essential oil with unscented lotion). I think I will finish off the day reading this or this. In the morning I'm going to yoga with a live cellist and then off to dinner at mom's. What an absolutely fabulous ordinary day! Sleep well!
The photo is from our front flowerbeds last week when the crocuses had just starting blooming! Yay for Spring!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Me vs. The Vacuum aka I'm overwhelmed

I can't believe how fast the day is going by. How fast the week is going by. How fast life is going by.

Do you ever feel like you're just along for the ride? I hate that feeling! Hate, hate, hate it! For me, it's like feeling really ungrounded and out of control. Like I'm floating through my day, but not in a good I'm-on-cloud-nine kind of way. More like a I'm-totally-overwhelmed-and-just-shutting-down-so-I-can-make-it-through-this-day kind of way. Ugh...

I understand that sometimes it is necessary to "just get through the day," but lately I'm feeling like I'm noticing this feeling way too much. So it is time for some serious action! I'm talking scheduling an entire day off of work, including at-home business work. Funny, just typing that makes me feel anxious - like OMG, I can't! My world might fall to pieces!

Okay, swimming through the nervousness and moving on to the next antidote...choosing 3-5 things that really need to be done for the day and not worrying about the rest of the to-do list. My typical to-do list has a section for my part-time job as a psychologist, running my current yoga studio, creating my future wellness center business, the graduate class I'm teaching, stuff to be done at home, studying for my licensure exam, and my self-care. So I can get a little overwhelmed looking at all of that. I'm going to try to pick a few things to focus on per day and go from there.

Which brings me to my next idea... Delegate! Take a look at your list and decide what you can ask someone else to do. For example, on my list I have "fix the vacuum." Our vacuum is vacuuming up just fine, but it is also simultaneously shooting out dust as it picks up things. Frustrating, right? My husband already gave it his best shot and I have not had 5 minutes to devote to the vacuum. Now I'm living with more cat hair than usual and it is really weighing on mind, silly as it may sound. So I'm considering asking for help in fixing the vacuum, taking it to a vacuum repair shop (they do exist, right?), or just buying a new one and being done with it. Okay, my vacuum rant ends here.

Next, get back to basics. Drink a lot of water, get enough sleep, eat your fruit and vegetables. It really does make a difference. Too bad that when I am stressed I do exactly the opposite. I stay up too late doing work, my diet consists of bread/cookies/any other carbohydrate, I skip my date with the treadmill in order to devote more time to my laptop. It is easy to do; you (and I) think you will just plow through it, leaving your self-care behind and all will be well in a short time and then you will take care of yourself. However, life seems to involve some degree of stress most of the time and if you wait to relax or take care of yourself until the "right" time, it just might never come. Plus, the stressful and overwhelming times are when you really need some extra TLC!

Finally, surrender. You've done the best you can. It's time to set your worries out into the universe. Breathe. Believe. Everything will be okay. Even if your vacuum continues to shoot out dust at you.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

New Year's Resolutions & Spring Intentions

Melita over at Gussying Up The Tuttle did a post today on her 2009 Vision Board (mine is pictured here) that had me thinking about the year so far... Then I received my missed-retreat goodie bag in the mail today from Kimberly Wilson and it included an index card with the words "Spring Intentions." Felt like a good time for some reflection!

My Spring Intentions all revolve around Reclaiming.

I want to Reclaim my Space by really cleaning the house and getting rid of as much stuff as possible. I want to Reclaim my Body by spending more time walking, running, and doing yoga. I want to Reclaim my Mind by meditating, eliminating unnecessary tasks from my to-do list, and feeding myself loads of mindful, healthy nourishment (not just food, but the media I consume, the conversations I take part in, and my self-talk).

What are your Spring Intentions?

PS Smack in the middle of my collage is a picture of the building my husband and I are buying for the Wellness Center - yay!!!