Losing My Yoga Virginity

Losing My Yoga Virginity

Sensing I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, she invited me to move my yoga mat closer to hers…

I don’t recall the names of the positions or poses. I do remember diving into something I knew nothing about and doing it anyway. Trusting and allowing, even after the yoga instructor repositioned me right in front of the class so I would be better able to follow along with her instructions.

Yoga!

How did I find myself in this situation? I actually took a day for me to do something for me. A self care kind of day. Taking time off for me isn’t something I can often do. Maybe if I was a better organized person or if I wasn’t so good at making excuses, maybe then I would have found the time to do something like this sooner.

My day was spent at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health which on the surface doesn’t Continue reading “Losing My Yoga Virginity”

It’s Emotional Amnesty Day

It’s Emotional Amnesty Day

Imaging what life could be like if we could simply stop carrying around our own backpack full of what we think is wrong with us. How much lighter would life feel?

What if they established one day per year where we could take all the things we consistently trash ourselves for and we could simply let them go? Put them down and walk away. To forgive ourselves for what we’ve done or not done, for who we are or who we think we are supposed to be, for what we haven’t yet done with our lives?

You know. Those gnawing feelings we get about ourselves. Those little voices reminding us of who we think we really are. Our short-comings, our failures, our doubts and fears, our thoughts about not being good enough. What if we allowed ourselves the opportunity to simply forgive ourselves and start new?

Amnesty.

Emotional amnesty.

The good news is today is Emotional Amnesty Day. Today can be the day to gather up all the limiting beliefs and self-sabotaging habits you don’t want to carry around with you any longer. The stuff that keeps you feeling stuck physically, spiritually, and emotionally. The guilt. The shame. The unworthiness. Continue reading “It’s Emotional Amnesty Day”

Could It Really Be This Simple?

Could It Really Be This Simple?

What if John and Paul were right?

What if all we need is love?

I’ve often dismissed the premise as being overly simplistic. Life can be extremely challenging sometimes. But I’m starting to think they were on to something.

When I look at the world, where wouldn’t love make a difference? Imagine any crisis or strife anywhere in the world. Wouldn’t love make so many of these situations dramatically better, perhaps even eliminate them completely? Isn’t the absence of love the root cause of most of these situations to begin with?

Look at the relationships in your life. Wouldn’t unconditional love make them better and stronger? Wouldn’t unconditional love allow us to accept others as they are and others to accept us as we are? Wouldn’t others also feel a greater sense of peace from feeling a greater sense of love?

Look at your relationship with yourself. What would your life look and feel like if you lovingly allowed yourself the space to be you, without judgement or condition? Isn’t it the absence of love which prevents us from being patient, forgiving, and supportive of ourselves?

Where wouldn’t more love make a difference?

Often our well-intentioned search to find answers to life’s deepest questions can take us down a long and winding road. Our problems are big and therefore demand big solutions.

Or do they?

Maybe it’s not as complicated as we can sometimes make it out to be.

Maybe all we really need is love?

It’s a great day to be you!

Waiting For The Beautiful To Become Beautiful

Waiting For The Beautiful To Become Beautiful

“They’re gonna be so beautiful when they bloom!”

This was overheard at a local nature preserve known, in part, for their large daffodil field, home to thousands of bulbs getting ready to share their gift. Visiting the field has become an annual tradition for a great many.

You could feel the anticipation in their voices as the daffodils were just days away from fully blooming and offering their vibrant color to the world. A few thoughts came to me in that moment:

Weren’t the daffodils already beautiful? Right now? As they already are? Like, at what point does something – or someone – become beautiful?

Ours is a results-oriented culture with a track record of celebrating successful outcomes. We usually don’t get too excited about the process. What we accept as beauty is greatly influenced by expectations and contingencies and once those conditions are satisfied we then feel free to affix the “beautiful” label. The daffodils, so close to fully blooming, apparently had not met their conditions for being beautiful just yet.

From a human standpoint, can we only see others and ourselves as beautiful when they/we are done growing? Can we find beauty in our incompleteness, in our unfolding, just as much as we do when we have finally blossomed and become?

For many we don’t allow our unfinished self to be beautiful. We “rationalize” that the process can’t be beautiful, only the result. As if beautiful is some sort of destination. But as humans we are never done blossoming, never done growing, are we? Because as humans, our unlimited potential for growth and expansion in an equally unlimited and expansive universe will never allow us to ever be complete, or done, or fully expressed. If we are waiting for the finality of our expansion before we can acknowledge our own beauty we will be waiting an entire lifetime before we do so.

And that would be such a shame.

Because beautiful is something we already are.

Exactly where we are, right now.

In our infinite incompleteness.

In our never-ending unfolding.

It’s a great day to be you!

Are You Spitting On The Seeds Of Your Greatness?

Are You Spitting On The Seeds Of Your Greatness?

I didn’t expect to see them. It’s 14 degrees, snow is in the forecast and there they were.

Seeds.

Flowers and veggies.

I’m not sure if Home Depot knows it’s still very much winter, but apparently in their mind it’s already spring. Right next to the seasonally correct collection of snow shovels and ice melt, little reminders of spring are slowly creeping in. Even if it’s 14 degrees outside.

And it’s not just the seeds. It’s all the other stuff seeds need in order to grow and flourish. Fertilizers, weed killers, hoses, sprinklers, rakes, landscape fabric. It’s amazing what actually goes into optimizing a garden.

Great gardens just don’t happen. They need to be fed and watered and cared for in order to optimize their growth and yield. And how well they are cared for determines Continue reading “Are You Spitting On The Seeds Of Your Greatness?”

When Was The Last Time You Pee’d On Your Kitchen Floor?

When Was The Last Time You Pee’d On Your Kitchen Floor?

I thought the puppy was going to break into two pieces. The back half of Watson was shaking and twisting uncontrollably in one direction while the front half was shaking and twisting the other way. His head was bobbing up and down and his tongue wagging side to side.

Just because I was home.

I’m always amazed by how excited the dog gets when I come home. I mean, all I do is come home, something I do every day. But in his world that is something to get excited about. Sometimes so excited that bodily functions don’t function as they should and I’m cleaning up doggie pee off the kitchen floor as a result.

Just because I was home.

When was the last time you were so excited that you pee’d on your kitchen floor?

Sometimes life sucks the puppy out of us, doesn’t it? Sometimes we become that old dog, the one averse to the new tricks, the one content to simply curl up and stop chasing Continue reading “When Was The Last Time You Pee’d On Your Kitchen Floor?”

A Strong Reason Why Will Take You Anywhere You Want To Go

A Strong Reason Why Will Take You Anywhere You Want To Go

As you read this, statistics indicate some 80% of all New Year’s resolutions will have failed by now.

How is that possible? It was just six short weeks ago that intentions were set and new ways of doing things were put into motion to support them. And now six weeks later 4 out of every 5 resolutions are already abandoned?

Perhaps it’s a lack of discipline. Maybe an inability to work within a new system to get the new results that we wanted when the resolution was initially set. While discipline and structure are critical in accomplishing anything, they’re not the most important parts of the process.

The most important?

It’s the reason Why.

Change is always challenging. Creatures of habit, we are. But without a strong reason to do so, it’s too easy for us to simply revert back to doing what we’ve always done and Continue reading “A Strong Reason Why Will Take You Anywhere You Want To Go”

How Much Of You Are You Willing To Leave Undone?

How Much Of You Are You Willing To Leave Undone?

What if we were to see ourselves the same way God sees us?

God has a lot of big ideas. And each of us is one of them. Each of us intentionally created in our own unique way. It’s the uniqueness of our individual talents, gifts, and abilities that we are here to develop and share with the world. Little pieces of God’s biggest idea.

God doesn’t just create things for the sake of creating them. Honestly, I don’t think He needs the practice. In a world of divine intention, there are no accidents. All of nature and all of humanity are here for very specific purposes.

The intention of creation is full expression. The idea becomes reality. That is what nature does. Trees grow as tall as they are supposed to. Trees don’t question their worthiness nor do they compare themselves to other trees and decide they aren’t good enough and decide to play small. They just grow, fully evolve, fully expressing the intention of their creation.

For us humans, the full expression of our own creation often gets a bit complicated.

Becoming all we were intended to become certainly has its challenges. Perhaps the greatest challenge is actually figuring out exactly what it is we were created for. Our Continue reading “How Much Of You Are You Willing To Leave Undone?”

The One Secret To Never Keep Secret

The One Secret To Never Keep Secret

“Love begins wherever we can truly do something for each other.”   – Gabriele Brüggemann

For something as important as love, for the most part you’re pretty much forced to figure it out on your own. The younger version of me learned about love by seeing it in action. Or, more accurately, by not seeing it in action. The examples of love I saw were for the most part silent, even secretive. Love, once initially established, tended to fall into the Understood category. You know I love you, so there isn’t really a need for me to remind you that I do. People in my world simply didn’t go around expressing their love for each other. It just wasn’t something that was done. Emotions, especially those of the loving kind, were best kept to yourself.

Especially for us males.

Maybe this describes your experience as well?

This older version of me has grown enough to grasp the idea that love can be a powerful life-changing force, an energy which can change things, including energy itself. And that energy changes people in a way only love can change them.

Love, the powerful version of love, is deep. Unconditional. Unlimited. But for love to be the force of change it can be, love needs to be proactively expressed. Consistently. Knowing someone loves you will only get you so far. But when you are proactively and consistently reminded someone loves you and has you and believes in you – especially for no specific reason other than that they do – that’s when love is at it’s most powerful, life-changing best. Continue reading “The One Secret To Never Keep Secret”

Maybe Your Life Already Is Something To Get Excited About?

Maybe Your Life Already Is Something To Get Excited About?

“Look, Dad. That’s Orion’s belt. See? Those three stars in a row. Do you see it?”

That was part of an unexpected exchange I had this week with my daughter in the driveway, her little finger pointing to where she wanted my eyes to go. We just came home from her dance class. Cold nights usually mean a clear sky, and on this night you could see to infinity and beyond.

As we got out of the car she threw her head back to find a sky full of stars. And for the next 15 minutes, despite the bitter cold, we scanned the night sky and found as many constellations as we could name.

“Isn’t this cool?” she asked, her voice filled with both awe and wonder.

One of the great things about having a younger child in the house is that they often remind you of things, things you used to simply always do before the whole adult thing showed up in your life and changed your focus. At some point life morphs into a pursuit, a race of attainment and the pressures and stress which come along with it. Instead of taking time to look up and enjoy, we put our heads down and push and kick and fight forward, looking for an ever-elusive happiness in the material things and the status which we feel will come along with them.

I remember awe and wonder. I remember when I wasn’t looking past what I was hoping to find, when I wasn’t so consumed by the future, so often at the expense of the awe and wonder of the present.

I can’t help but contemplate how much awe and wonder am I missing in other areas of my life? Do I see it in the people in my life, the opportunities I have, the physical world around me? Or even life itself? Am I too busy living that I am not really fully alive?

Look up. Look around. Look inside.

Awe and wonder are everywhere.

We just need to take the time to see it.

It’s a great day to be you!