|who aren't there to judge you or tell you to be someone else or to stop acting like that an start behaving like this.
In a yoga class, for just a short window of time, you get to be none other than yourself. It's not wonder that so many people feel awesome after a yoga class!
Imagine if you could feel that great ALL. THE. TIME.
This is my goal in teaching, practicing, and healing others.
Just the other day, I was invited to a business networking community, and had the opportunity to share "what" I do with a room full of strangers.
Strangers that talked, looked, and acted Nothing Like Me.
And I was supposed to stand up in front of all of these business-y folks, and make a pitch to them about yoga and Ayurveda.
Scared shitless is one way to describe how I felt. As I walked into the room, Anxiety that these people would accept and understand me and my message overwhelmed my thinking...
As each participant stood up to offer their 40 second commercial, attempting to explain who they were, their business, and what they offered and what they wanted, I noticed the energy in the room build and grow increasingly tense and...bored. I noticed I was only taking in about 50% of what people were saying, forgetting names and careers and only thinking about what I was going to say.
When it was my turn, I stood up and looked around the room, wasting 3 precious seconds. I made eye contact with all 40 people, and said my name, Good Morning, I practice Yoga and Ayurveda. 8 seconds. Most of you don't know what that is. 5 seconds. (I was speaking slowly and deliberately).
I want you to close your eyes. (NO ONE CLOSED THEIR EYES!). No seriously, CLOSE YOUR EYES. (I wait, 10 seconds later, everyone has obliged.) Now take a deep breath. 3 seconds.
Now do that same thing 3 more times, after which, you can open your eyes. (8 seconds.) Ayurveda and yoga are 5,000 year old practices that shift How you think, act, feel, do and be every day of your life.
The bell goes off. Times up.
Completely pissed, I didn't even explain myself, I felt angry, frustrated, and annoyed for coming and agreeing to participate in such a stupid exercise.
It wasn't until later on in the day, when I was sharing the experience with a friend, that I realized I couldn't name more than 5 other people in the room and what they do for a living. Much less tell you what kind of 40-second "commercial" they had given to the room.
I realized that what I had said and done in my 40 seconds, was to offer each person in the room EXACTLY what my students and clients get every time they come to a class or work with me.
In my brief moment on stage, I gave these strangers a direct EXPERIENCE that shifted their energy immediately, allowing them to think more clearly, listen to their own inner voice and decompress some of the unconscious stress and tension that they carry around every day. In 10 Seconds.
I knew this to be true, because after the meeting was over, every single person who came up to me to speak with me said so. "I really thought your pitch was unique and different. I felt it."
"It was really nice to breathe like that without thinking about anything else. I needed it."
So often, we throw away our energy by TRYING to make other people notice us, by trying to be better, by trying to make more money, by working harder, by trying to be MORE than we already are.
What if the person who you are in this moment, is actually enough?
I'll bet you try as much as the next person to be "on top" of your work, your life, your creative ideas, and responsibilities. You know what it feels like to want to GIVE and CREATE your own unique self to the world, and run into the limitations of time and energy.
A very common story that many of us tell ourselves is that there isn't ENOUGH: time in the day, of ourselves to go around, money, etc.
And we may very well have a future-oriented goal that we are working towards: to save more money, to pay off a debt, to change careers, to change our lifestyle altogether. These goals aren't a problem! They are your PASSIONS that keep you inspired.
At this moment: as you read this, (thanks by the way!) is there a firestorm going on around you? Is your body writhing in constant pain? Are the kids killing one another in the other room? Is your computer exploding while you read this on the screen?
(It's not by the way. You wouldn't be reading this if those things were happening.) They may be things you are anticipating.
But they are not happening RIGHT NOW.
What's true at this moment, is that you have the ability to read this, digest it, process it, and consider for yourself WHAT YOU DO HAVE as much as the things you anticipate.
Yea, yea, Hannah, the glass is half full, I get it.
No seriously. What do you have the ability to do THAT YOU ARE NOT LOOKING AT.
What are actionable skills and ideas that you possess, but you naysay or ignore?
How often do you silently tell yourself that this firestorm is more real, and spend your time WORRYING about it out loud or BURYING it inside?
When we hold onto these beliefs, it creates stress and strain on our minds, and our bodies. It becomes easier to believe in our weakness because our body starts to feel like sh#t.
Where your focus goes, your energy goes. So when we spend all of time thinking about and preparing for the WORST, we actually give away all of our precious energy to helping the worst to manifest.
On the same principle however, when we put our focus into the part of the glass that is half full (even if you don't know what it's full of, and it ain't sh%t), we can stream our energy into different channels. Even if you're only focusing on your breath! Which is, of course, what I would recommend. Where your focus goes, your energy follows, and when your focus follows breath, this is an incredibly empowering tool.
This week, put a reminder on your phone or a post-it on your refrigerator. Take time to breathe for 3 minutes. I know this may sound like advice your mom might've given you as a kid when you got upset, but give this advice to yourself now and see where it takes you.
Stay tuned, in my next newsletter I'll be sharing my favorite breathing technique, one I've been teaching for 10 years, and helped me overcome my anxiety and learn how to meditate...
If you want to really step up that feeling and actually spend time learning and practicing the art of being uniquely and authentically you, then my carefully curated Yoga Retreat to Costa Rica may be exactly what you need to stop dreaming and start living beautifully you every day.
Yoga. Nature. Time. Space.
These are the ingredients to experiencing energy, strength, and bliss in your body.
Maybe you'll find it's exactly what you need this winter...