Short and Sweet, Slow flow for a long day

I wrote you a blog post this morning, one I was really proud of.  Then I hit the save button and viola gone.  The square space page froze and there went the last two hours.  I was already running on fumes from not enough sleep.  If you're day has been like that even if it was also filled with good then this short and sweet slow flow is for you. 

The truth about a home yoga practice

Pose 1.3 Downward facing dog
Pose 1.3 Downward facing dog

If you are waiting for things to be perfect to have a home yoga practice you will never have a home yoga practice.  If you are waiting for a room devoted to yoga, or a full hour to be able to practice every day you will never have a home practice.  The best advice I ever received was practice every day even if you only have 10 minutes.  10 minutes every day is better than an hour once a week.  This serves me well even today.

Before I became a yoga teacher I thought yoga teachers had these perfect home yoga practices.  They must have whole rooms in their house devoted to nothing but their mat, a mediation cushion possibly a Buddha, and a stereo.  They must have these perfect hour-long daily practices at 4am where cares just fall away and they lose track of time they are so in the moment.

Yeah, not true.  Well, I sorta have a yoga room, but it's also sorta filled with boxes and other things too and there are many dust bunnies full of dog hair floating around.  There is a dog that I know I should put in another room, but he sits in the same room watching me.  I normally have time to practice right when I get home from work not early in the morning and I rarely get more than 30 minutes let alone an hour.  The house is normally a disaster zone because even though I'm great at many things, I am not great at keeping a clean house.  There are oodles of distractions around me.  It's just like normal life.  A normal life and a home yoga practice go hand in hand.

Tonight when I got on my mat, I found myself distracted because I was using my least favorite mat (yes, yoga teachers or at least this yoga teachers acquire multiple mats) and I kept slipping. Then I noticed the floor needed cleaning, and the dog being curious about what I was doing. Then I remembered it was about the breath not those other things.  For a few minutes I was able to stay with my breath and then I quickly got distracted again.  I noticed and then I tried to take it inward once again.  I wasn't very grounded tonight.  Getting on my mat and trying in the first place was the reason I noticed.

My message is don't wait for the situation to be perfect, Don't wait until you have enough time.  Just go get on your mat for 10 minutes even if you lay in savasana breathing for all 10 minutes.

Little Things

Feet
Feet

When the world is spinning around me, when I want to pull my hair out with to many "To-Do's", when it feels like I'm being smashed together by the demands of my world, I try to get up 30-60 minutes earlier.  Why would I sacrifice sleep when I feel pressure from all sides of my being?  Well, it's because those tiny moments of the morning when the world is still, they are when I can best listen to myself, when I can get in touch with what I really need and want.

This morning I woke up early and got on my mat for a short personal practice in dim candle light.  Did you know that doing something small and special for your self like 10 sun salutations with a candle lit can help improve your mood?  It can immensely! After my sun salutations it was time for a hearty healthy breakfast, poached eggs on a piece of toast with provolone and a strong cup of coffee.  I took the time to finish my morning pages and not let myself feel rushed. 

This small practice, hearty breakfast and morning pages allowed me to start my day feeling centered.  It allowed me to feel like I was moving forward from a place of peace and not rush around like a crazy woman.  My morning at work was productive and lead with focus because I was grounded and able to focus on the goals of work.  It's lunch time now and I'm giving my brain a break, a rest from work instead of working through, well, I'll probably only take a half an hour but that's better than nothing.  I truly believe that (and research backs me up) giving your brain a rest makes you more productive, not less. 

How will you carve out time for yourself?  December is filled with hustle, bustle, year-end activities, goals and seasonal festivities.  Much to do, but that doesn't mean you can't be grounded, it doesn't mean you can't carve out time for yourself.  You will actually function better if you do.

Looking forward to hearing how you find time amidst the holiday and year-end bustle to take care of yourself. 

-lish