Posted: December 9, 2014 Filed under: Kindness, Meditation, Yoga | Tags: Bliss, blogging, Body Image, Buddhism, compassion, cycling, exercise, family, fitness, freshly pressed, gratitude, happiness, health, holidays, hope, kindness, life, love, lululemon, marathon, meditation, Mindfulness, Omaha, passion, pilates, Self-love, Solitude, winter, yoga, Zen
Solitude is fine but you need someone to tell that solitude is fine.-
When I became chronically “injured” over five years ago, I was forced to trade the exciting life of an aspiring athlete for the isolation of my own mind … The loneliness was dense, palpable at times, it was hard to distinguish between the injury I was struggling through at the time and the loneliness that gripped me all of the time.
Back in the wonder years, I found being alone anything but glorious, and far from being soothing. It wasn’t even remotely sweet and delicious. Although, a close friends advice that yoga was what I needed – planted a delicate seed in my mind, and so I began to explore the meaning of “being alone.” I realized early on that being alone on my mat, in and of itself, is neither positive nor negative. This profound feedback described a good portion of my life trying to be someone who I was not – The painful loneliness of striving to be better than the person next me on the starting line or the glorious solitude of going home broken and empty-handed.
The spiritual manifestation of yoga (not to be confused with the physical) and a deeply rooted mindfulness “practice” showed me that if I could let go of the desire to win at all costs, I might be able to open my heart and soul to the possibility that life could be sweet, maybe even delicious?!? I gradually warmed to the quiet calm of my mind, mindfully following my breath entering and leaving my body. My powers of observation, began to bloom – noting the subtle details swirling around me, details that in the past – Escaped me, like the play of sunlight reflecting from the metallic rims on the road as I cycle along or leaves dancing carelessly in the air on a windy fall morning.
Once I opened my heart and soul to being alone, my loneliness did become sweet and delicious. And some days, when all is calm, it’s even beautiful. Cultivating self-compassion more so than anything else, softens my loneliness and pain, which in turn makes me smile.
Rachelle, Jeff, Cheryl – Sandra, Jim, Katelon, Alyssa, Susie – Michelle, Sara and Maia. To all of you who have “followed” my ramblings from the beginning – My sincerest gratitude for your kindness and support. There truly is no way I can accurately put into words how much you have helped me – Thank you.
Posted: January 21, 2014 Filed under: Meditation, Yoga | Tags: Ahimsa, blogging, compassion, courage, crossfit, cycling, exercise, family, Feelings, fitness, free range, freshly pressed, friends, gluten free, happiness, health, hipster, Honor, hope, Intention, kindness, life, love, marathon, meditation, NFL, Omaha, pilates, running, Self-love, trail running, whole foods, WOD, yoga
It is better to be alone than in bad company-
*The following post stems from a conversation I had this weekend with a close friend and mentor. Our discussion, wide-ranging as usual, started before yoga class this past Saturday morning. We both overheard a young couple talking about the tragic events at a X-Fit competition earlier in the week, five minutes before our class started … *
Why do we work out and consciously choose to abuse our bodies? Seriously, why do WE work out and choose to surround ourselves in an atmosphere that rewards, thrives on pain and punishment ? Why do we choose to persistently neglect and abuse our body, mind and spirit?
As I started to peel back the musty curtains hanging around my true self, my mind and heart finally (after 30+ years of abuse) awakened to the source of all the change and success I choose to ignore before. I stumbled upon a little known fact, that I simply choose to ignore for far too long:
We have to create Self Love.
It’s that simple folks, no yoga teacher in the world can do this for you, nor will competing in vain competitions. Your spouse may try to, and your friends may try even harder. No one can awaken you to loving yourself!
When did we stop honoring who we really? When did we stop honoring our feelings, and responding openly to these feelings? When did we forget that feelings are important signals to tune into? Even feelings of anger, pain and fear serve an important purpose of alerting us to the obstacles that may lie ahead on our path, if we keep neglecting the honest truth.
Believe me I know, it’s a tough choice each one of us has to make: Talking about our most vulnerable personal feelings or how sore and bad ass we feel after a killer yoga class – dude.
After much thought, and a few sips of coffee, I have finally reached an understanding as to why I have limitations in my life …
I honor my body, mind and spirit.
Posted: September 25, 2013 Filed under: Random Workout | Tags: Agape, Aristotle, biking, Bikram Yoga, blogging, compassion, cycling, Eros, fitness, freshly pressed, gluten free, happiness, health, hipster, kettlebell, kindness, life, love, lululemon, marathon, meditation, motivation, musings, natural, nature, Omaha, Oscar Wilde, paleo, passion, perspective, Philautia, Philia, pilates, Romance, running, Self-love, simplicity, trail running, Walk, walking, whole foods, WOD, writing, yoga
This thing about you that you think is your flaw – it’s the reason I’m falling in love with you-
Oscar Wilde once wrote that, “The essence of romance is uncertainty.” Why yes! The age-old strategy for finding love Is by playing hard-to-get, which helps spur yearning, desire and anticipation. Although there are other kinds of “love” and at times its confusing for many (especially myself) because unlike the great word smiths, writers and poets before our time. Today, love is a catchall term for literally, everything. Love carries little or no weight during a conversation, how many times have you said you Love running in the same sentence with: “I Love you.”
Join me by reintroducing other, seldom used terms or endearment back into the lexicon of the modern world. *Bonus points if you use these words with a loved one, stranger and whist working out today.*
Ludus, is a more playful form of affection found in fooling around and flirting. If you feel love for all “things“, humanity, nature, the stinky dude bent over in front of you in yoga class this morning? A more generalized love is Agape.
Philia, is deep, non-sexual intimacy between close friends, family and often at times – complete strangers. Philia can also manifest as a deep bond forged by people who have been through a dramatic or emotional experience together. Can you remember the kind folks who helped support you through your first marathon?
Lastly I want to leave you with the most profound kind of love … In order to love another I believe we also need a type of love called Philautia, which is self-love. It’s important to note that in order to care for others, we desperately need to care and love ourselves.
Love is not something we fleetingly fall into. Be well today!