Thanks to the Monsters

October 21, 2013

Last night, I had the incredible privilege of attending Sacred Thread Yoga’s One Year Anniversary celebration. The celebration was a night of sweetness: a free yoga class taught by the beautiful Deborah Quibell and then chai, sweets and community afterwards. As a teacher at Sacred Thread, Deborah asked all of us to record “an invitation” that we would like to share with yoga community during this class. She wove all of our invitations into the evening’s playlist for one of the sweetest yoga classes I’ve ever attended. Every time I heard one of my fellow teachers’ voices, my eyes filled with tears and my practice moved another layer deeper.

The request for an invitation caught me a bit off guard though, I was spending the weekend with a girlfriend and wasn’t at home with my usual resources of yoga books, journals and saved quotes to inspire me. As I sat on my friend’s couch reflecting over the weekend and wondering what I would share in class this week, my eyes fell on a beautiful piece of art created by another dear friend.

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“Here’s my thanks to the monster that didn’t succeed in swallowing me alive.” Created by Laura Martin

And as simple as that, I pulled out my phone and recorded an invitation for you:

An Invitation for You

Yoga for Healing

October 7, 2013

6-week series: Yoga For Healing

Atlanta Hot Yoga (Buckhead location)

Tuesday, 8 – 9:15 a.m.

Oct. 15 – Nov. 19, 2013

Yoga for Healing is designed for those that want to introduce an element of depth and  healing into their lives.  It is for those that want to deepen their practice with touches of pranayama and meditation. People seek Yoga Therapy for any number of reasons:

  • Orthopedic injuries and imbalances
  • Chronic pain, arthritis, firbomyalgia, carpel tunnel syndrom
  • Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, IBS, headaches
  • Depression, anxiety, insomnia, chronic fatigue syndrome
  • To learn about movement patterns, proper alignment, body mechanics
  • To rediscover a sense of self, inner peace, joy and other matters of the heart

This series is designed to invite yogis into a space of exploration.  Likely, you know your yoga practice already.  You know what poses you love to do and what you’d prefer to skip.  You know what causes frustration and what makes you feel like a rockstar. I’m going to ask you to forget all of that. Forget what you expect out of your practice, out of your environment and your teacher. Instead, we will explore. We will watch. We will ask questions that don’t require an answer, at least not in words. Do you have to be sick or injured to join Yoga for Healing? No. My home practice is an exploration of healing everyday.  Honestly, what day doesn’t include at least one moment where we feel injured through a hurtful word, frustrating demands or painful rush hour traffic?

Consider joining me on Tuesday, Oct. 15 for this 6-week exploration of healing.  You can email me with questions or to pre-register at register@merylarnett.com or read more about Therapeutic Yoga here.

$60/full series

$18/drop-in

AHY class cards are accepted for this series

Yoga for Healing

October 7, 2013

Many of you know that I’ve spent the last few years studying the therapeutic benefits of yoga.  I love yoga for the stretching and strengthening aspects of the practice and for the sweat of a hot class, but I also love what yoga does for our mind and our soul.  The cohesion of our practice can offer healing qualities for physical injury, emotional struggles and mental imbalance.  It can take the disparate pieces of our self and pull them back together within our Soul.  It can allow us to explore the beauty of Spirit and depth of Soul, and it can teach you to take care of that low back pain as well.

Next week on Oct. 15, I am introducing a 6-week Yoga for Healing series at Atlanta Hot Yoga on Tuesdays at 8 a.m.  This series is designed to invite yogis into a space of exploration.  Likely, you know your yoga practice already.  You know what poses you love to do and what you’d prefer to skip.  You know what causes frustration and what makes you feel like a rockstar. I’m going to ask you to forget all of that. Forget what you expect out of your practice, out of your environment and your teacher. Instead, we will explore. We will watch. We will ask questions that don’t require an answer, at least not in words. Do you have to be sick or injured to join Yoga for Healing? No. My home practice is an exploration of healing everyday.  Honestly, what day doesn’t include at least one moment where we feel injured through a hurtful word, frustrating demands or painful rush hour traffic?

Yoga for Healing is designed for those that want to introduce an element of kindness and, yes, healing, into their lives.  It is for those that want to deepen their practice with touches of pranayama and meditation. People seek Yoga Therapy for any number of reasons:

  • Orthopedic injuries and imbalances
  • Chronic pain, arthritis, firbomyalgia, carpel tunnel syndrom
  • Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, IBS, headaches
  • Depression, anxiety, insomnia, chronic fatigue syndrome
  • To learn about movement patterns, proper alignment, body mechanics
  • To rediscover a sense of self, inner peace, joy and other matters of the heart

Consider joining me on Tuesday, Oct. 15 for this 6-week exploration of healing.  You can email me with questions or to pre-register at register@merylarnett.com.

$60/full series

$18/drop-in

AHY class cards are accepted for this series

Pumpkin Coconut Caramel Coffee

September 30, 2013

It’s FALL!!!!!  In my fall-loving-frenzy, there is nothing more enjoyable than a Pumpkin Latte, except…  gross, what is in that fake-pumpkin-flavored-sugar-syrup they put in that coffee?  Don’t get me wrong, I’ll occasionally splurge and still drink one of those lattes, but I can’t help feeling a little yucky afterwards.  So, imagine, my delight, when I opened my newest cookbook purchase, Vegan Slow Cooking For Two, and found this little gem:

Pumpkin Coconut Caramel Sauce

1 can full-fat coconut milk

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp ground cardamom

1/8 tsp ground allspice

pinch cloves

Add all the ingredients into your 1.5 quart slow cooker and cook on low for 9 hours.  Store in the fridge and use a few teaspoons in your hot or iced coffee.

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Kathy Hester, the author of this awesome cookbook, also has a fabulous healthy cooking blog.  Check it out!

The Places That Scare You

September 30, 2013

October’s Yoga Book Club selection is The Places That Scare You by Pema Chodron.  Please note, that due to a scheduling conflict we have moved the date of book club up by one week.  We will be meeting at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 22 at the Sacred Thread Ashram.  This book club is open to all; feel free to join us!

 

We always have a choice, Pema Chödrön teaches: We can let the circumstances of our lives harden us and make us increasingly resentful and afraid, or we can let them soften us and make us kinder. Here Pema provides the tools to deal with the problems and difficulties that life throws our way. This wisdom is always available to us, she teaches, but we usually block it with habitual patterns rooted in fear. Beyond that fear lies a state of openheartedness and tenderness. This book teaches us how to awaken our basic goodness and connect with others, to accept ourselves and others complete with faults and imperfections, and to stay in the present moment by seeing through the strategies of ego that cause us to resist life as it is.

Scarcity

September 30, 2013

For me and for many of us, our first waking thought of the day is “I didn’t get enough sleep.” The next one is “I don’t have enough time.” … We spend most of the hours and days of our lives hearing, explaining, complaining, or worrying about what we don’t have enough of…  We don’t have enough exercise.  We don’t have enough work.  We don’t have enough profits.  We don’t have enough weekends.  Of course, we don’t have enough money – ever.

We’re not thin enough, we’re not smart enough, we’re not pretty enough or fit enough or educated or successful enough, or rich enough – ever.  Before we sit up in bed, before our feet touch the floor, we’re already inadequate, already behind, already losing, already lacking something.

This excerpt, from The Soul of Money by Lynne Twist, speaks truth, doesn’t it?  When I read this I literally pulled out a pen and wrote “WOW” next to those paragraphs.

Today, I’ve spent most of the day trying to have a day off.  All weekend, I was assisting in a training that was incredibly fun but also incredibly tiring.  Rightfully so, I felt as though I deserved a day off.  Normally, on Mondays I teach 2 privates; sadly, one of those clients has just moved to L.A. and the other client had a conflict today and needed to reschedule.  Equally Normal, on Mondays, I have a list a mile long of to dos like “check email,” “update website,” etc. etc.  But today, I didn’t set an alarm.  I woke up around 9 and sat on my front porch with the coffee and the paper.  Sounds awesome, right?  Except the entire time I was “reading” I was actually making lists in my head of things to be done.  I need to book another private client to replace the one I’ve lost.  I need to start reading this month’s Yoga Book Club selection.  I need to pay the American Express bill.  And then, HOW am I going to pay the American Express bill….

So, I put down the paper, picked up the computer and started responding to emails.  I added more to my to do list.  I snapped at my husband.  I tried to let go and take a nap only to get back up because it felt too decadent to take a nap. Who has time for naps? Finally, in a fit of frustration, I rolled out my mat and committed to a 20 minute practice to help clear my head.  I ended up practicing for a little over an hour, and then I sat down to reflect on what I’d like to share in my classes this week.  Something about Elizabeth Gilbert’s new book and her TED talk? No. Something from this weekend’s training? How many times have I done that already?! No.

Nothing resonated until I picked up this book and read the paragraphs above.  Wow.  There was my day staring back at me from these pages.  While telling myself I was going to enjoy a day off, instead I spent the majority of the day worrying about not having enough time, clients or money.  None of which is actually true.  So, what is the solution?  How can we clear our heads and hearts from this auto-pilot thinking that we don’t have enough?

Twist suggests the following:

We each have the choice in any setting to step back and let go of the mind-set scarcity.  Once we let go of scarcity, we discover the surprising truth of sufficiency.  By sufficiency, I don’t mean a quantity of anything.  Sufficiency isn’t two steps up from poverty or one step short of abundance… Sufficiency isn’t an amount at all.  It is an experience, a context we generate, a declaration, a knowing that there is enough, and that we are enough.

Now, I get that just believing in sufficiency or believing in abundance can seem a little woo-woo, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said, “I only have time for a 20 minute practice today,” and then ended up practicing for 60 minutes. Or 90 minutes.  Somehow, by giving myself the space to do what is needed (for me, I always need to practice) I still magically have enough time to get done the other thing that need to be accomplished for the day.  I don’t practice in lieu of doing something else on my to do list.  I practice and then I tackle those never-ending bullets on my lists.  And somehow, some way, it all gets done.  Sufficiently.

After wasting my morning in a scarcity panic, I enjoyed a practice and walk (truly decadent), I read most of the paper (actually read it this time), and planned out my classes for the week.  Now, I’m taking the rest of the evening off to enjoy a glass of red wine and the crossword puzzle.  Totally sufficient.

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