Empowerment, Inspiration, Yoga

Lessons in Life, Business and Yoga

There’s something I’ve been meaning to open up about on here (and in life). Not only to get it out of my own system and release the energy, but because I know there are other people that have been there.  Acknowledging this is like trying to roll a bowling ball up a hill with your tongue.

So. Fucking. Hard.

The last weekend in August, I took a road trip to P-town, MA with my former housemate for the bachelorette party of our other housemate. It was so much fun and such a celebration of love + friendship.  In a drunken profession of heterosexual love I confessed to her that somewhere along the way, I had lost myself, but it was ok, I was coming back to life again.  (I realized this quite some time ago,  but she was the very first person I admitted it to, out loud).   Her only response was… “well I’m glad you’re back, it’s about fucking time, I missed you.”  Then there were tears -big, fat, juicy, drunk tears.

People that have known me for years know that I am a little mouthy, a little bossy and a little sassy. I’m fiercely loyal, ridiculously stubborn and 9 times out of 10 my volume is dialed up as far as it will go [in public].  For the past few years the ‘me volume‘ has been buffered. I transformed into something that wasn’t authentically me. How did it happen? How did I get there?

The Bhagavad Gita says do another’s dharma to your detriment. I experienced this first hand.  I chose to follow the dharma of another.  In the process I lost my voice. The essence of what was truly me; type-a, over-achiever, energizer, volume on high, f bombs and all.

When I was asked to join Live. Breathe. Grow., I was over the moon excited about it.  While my heath + yoga coaching practice was blossoming, I was lonely and totally tired of chugging along on my own. (Lesson Number 1: always have a support system in place – you need a support posse that has your back). The excitement of launching a new company was infectious. I was drunk on the innovation of new ideas and the creativity of designing business organization.  I couldn’t help but to fall in love with the ideas of what could be and I didn’t think twice about sending out an e-blast to 2000 subscribers telling them I was closing up shop.

I walked into the partnership in love and friendship (Lesson Number 2: never take your legal thinking cap off and always enter into partnership agreements).  I didn’t have the start up financial investment to be an equal partner, but we were friends so ‘on paper’ it was 50/50. Subconsciously, the unequal footing tamed my opinion. It was always her company, I was just jumping on board. I deferred at all times to her opinion. I quieted my voice. It was her dream, I was just along for the ride. In failing to be truly open, I became more like my business partner and a little less like myself. I dialed my volume down.  Instead of fighting for the sparkle and spotlight (something as an only child I have done all my life) I was content to walk in another’s shadow. I felt less like me. I was embarrassed to have effervescent opinions which lead me to feel dreadfully inadequate. The irony was, I was selling t-shirts that inspired and empowered women to:

Stand in your personal power and strength. Honor your voice, that source of intuitive wisdom that shines like a beacon on light inside you. Have the courage to decide how to live your own life. Go inside to find your guide, then harness your energy to shine your light outward. Be confident in who you are and tell the world I AM ME. Live. Breathe. Grow. …into who you are meant to be.

The LBG Manifesto is gorgeous. It’s soft and supportive. It wraps its arms around you and lifts you up with compassion. It’s purely Nancy and perfect for her company.

It’s not purely Terra. Purely Terra is loufulld.
Determined.
Audacious.
Gold Sparkled.
Fierce.
Visionary.
She doesn’t coddle you, she tells you to walk it off [wings. talk. hustle!]. If there’s a theme song in the background, it probably came from Yo MTV Raps. She doesn’t need to be reminded of her personal power, because she’s already fucking there. Or at least she was before she gave up her own path to do another’s dharma.  

When Nancy told me she didn’t want to do it anymore, that she wanted to let it all go and turn LBG into a blog, I was devastated.  I told her I would take over, work on buying her out and continue down the path we had forged together. And I tried. But nothing, and I mean nothing worked out. The Universe tossed out red flag after red flag and I kept ignoring them, volleying back ideas to keep her on board and to keep LBG alive. (Lesson Number 3: Ignoring the Universe is a really fucking bad idea).  I was heartbroken and frustrated. Tired of trying to balance two people on a unicycle, I finally gave up and walked away.

I immediately threw myself into a Masters to PhD. program that I wasn’t jumping up and down about. I needed to fill time and space. I was totally and utterly lost.  I had completely forgotten what I was like to be me outside of LBG. In following another’s dharma I lost my own identity.  If I wasn’t one of the owners of LBG, what was I?  Without LBG I had no fucking clue.  A lawyer? A yoga teacher? Life Coach? Health Coach? Entrepreneur? [LBG Terra would never say fuck in a blog].

I didn’t have the answers. I retreated. I severed ties and let go of my network. I broke up with Yoga, the one thing used to bring me me clarity and peace.  I struggled. I cried daily. I flew into fits of rage and bitterness.  My once open and vibrant personality became dim and introverted. Finally, with guidance I learned to surrender. The only thing that brought me back was letting go. Letting go of the business, letting go of the partnership, letting go of the networks, letting go of the  friendship. (Lesson Number 4: Sometimes you have to surrender and let go to move forward).

Eventually a few friends coaxed me back into my yoga practice. I found a studio that didn’t know me as a teacher or that I was associated with LBG (Let me tell you, that was NOT easy, I had to wait until a new studio opened up). And in yoga, I found myself (yet again). I’ve put my own shoes on (they’re gold Sparkle Toms). And most importantly, I’ve tapped back into that thing that makes me, me. For the first time in over a year, I actually feel alive, confident, and happy —all at the same time.  It’s amazing how once you let go, clarity is instantaneous.

Nancy decided not to turn Live. Breathe. Grow. into a blog and it continues to grow.  I still feel awkward when people ask – my voice is there, but my heart is still raw.  Mostly I just say we were heading in two different directions. She continues on her path, and I’ve hopped back on mine.

Doing another’s dharma was to my detriment – I lost friendships, time, two businesses, a vibrant teaching practice and the most detrimental – my voice.  Through it all I gained clarity and now I know my true dharma, to help yoginis, energy workers, peace makers and earth keepers live abundant lives.

I can’t wait for The Darshana Collective to launch.
It’s coming soon….

The Darshana Collective
The Darshana Collective
Branding, Business, Yoga

Yogini Stylin + Geeky Virgo Post-it Notes

Today I was wasting precious morning moments on Facebook.  (Yes, it’s a time sucker, but it’s also an integral part of growing your business, and this social media junkie loves it).  I  am a member of a ton of Facebook Groups (probably too many) but I am pretty active in a couple of yoga ones. Some I use for networking + marketing, some I use for masterminding + collaboration and some I use for learning + continued education.  Today in one of my Yoga Mastermind groups a fellow yogini asked:

What about you sets you apart from other yogis? What do you do/not do, think/not, or feel/not that is less than typical? Anything? ((Here’s a lighthearted one from me, just to provide an example: I do very few -if any at all- sun salutes in my personal practice.))

It really got me thinking – what about me makes me different?

So I made a little list in my head. (Ok. I lied. I actually wrote out the on pen + post it. I am a Virgo and we do this a lot, lists + organization is a turn on.  We’re weird, but you couldn’t live without us. You’re lucky I didn’t color code the post-it!)

Virgos dig lists + post-its
Virgos dig lists + post-its
  • I don’t look like most yoga teachers.
  • Most of my yoga is practiced off the mat.
  • I  am influenced by many but don’t subscribe to any one guru’s philosophy.
  • I am influenced by many but don’t practice any one style (ie Bikram, Ashtanga, Kripalu, Jivamukti) I’ve developed,  practice and teach my own style, Darshana Yoga.
  • Music and intuition are integral to my style of asana practice at home and in studio.
  • I am a little silly, a little organized, and usually more sassy than fluffy.
  • I am touchy-feely. You will receive multiple hands-on adjustments, massage and pressure points in my class (if you don’t object).
  • I teach classes to evoke emotion and hopefully transformation. You’re not coming to church when you attend my classes, but you’re definitely getting more than just a little exercise, breathing and stretching.

Then I responded:

As far as my studio teaching is concerned, I don’t look like your average teacher.  I am known for my very non-yogic, quirky play lists (ie: Tribe Called Quest followed by Tony Bennett), tailoring my classes to musical themes (ie: all song about sunshine in a solstice class, all songs with the word “heart” in a valentines day class etc.) and mixing Yin style of sinking into postures with Soul Sweat . It’s really all about connecting the breath + movement with the music whether it’s upbeat or mellow – to create transformation of some kind for me. I spend a LOT of time on play lists. If the music changes, I may just have you SINK into virabhadrasana ii for 10 even 20 counts. And nope. I am not a trained dancer.

 How the heck did I develop my style of teaching? Why do students try my classes? And why do they come back? It all boils down to one thing, personality.  I bring my authentic personality to everything I do whether it’s teaching yoga, negotiating a contract or running a business. Who you are is essential to your success. We can certainly ‘fake it until we make it’ but we cant pretend to be someone we’re not.  Developing your voice as a teacher is the essence of what attracts students to your class.

(knowing WTF you’re doing and keeping students safe is also a bonus)

If you’re a new teacher or even a seasoned teacher that is struggling with class numbers, take a look at how you live your life and interact with people (friends + family) off the mat. Is it drastically different than how you teach (and speak) on the mat?  Why? How can you take your yoga off the mat and what can you do to infuse your on the mat with your off the mat personality? Your students want to be guided in an authentic way. They will see straight through you if you rely on the personality or words of someone else (or even your own favorite teacher).

Find your Inner-Superstar
Find your Inner-Superstar

Developing the signature style of your voice isn’t quite as easy as it seems. Teaching metaphors are an art form.  Developing them takes practice.  I’ve heard a few teachers of a certain style of yoga use  “puff your kidneys” and “blossom your buttocks.”  Seriously. I snorted typing that last one, do you think I could personally get away with using it in class? NEVER. I’d end up in a fit of laughter or go off on a 5 minute tangent about my flowering asshole. (We all know I secretly have the sense of humor of a 14 year old boy). Totes not cool.

The point is, that language wouldn’t be authentic to me. I didn’t come up with the metaphor. I can’t really relate to puffing my kidneys (they filter, they don’t breathe!) and I would never use the word buttocks.  Yeah Dave wouldn’t have the following he does if he didnt gush about how much he loves chocolate + wine and every so often craves a Parliament Light after a few cocktails. Can you imagine Snatam Kaur talking about wanting a smoke ever in this lifetime, let alone after a few cocktails?  Preposterous! Think about, connect with and develop your own yoga script. Use imagery, descriptive words and music that you’re comfortable with.

Just be you.

Health, Yoga

Om Sweet Om

This morning I practiced yoga with a group of friends, family and yoga teachers.  It was morning satsang and kirtan in celebration of my dear friend Lauren’s birthday.  It was the first practice I have done in months.  That seems shocking to say out loud.

When I got the invitation in the mail a few weeks ago, my stomach dropped. I spent weeks trying to figure out how to tell her that I wouldn’t be able to make it. I am so detached from my practice. My body isn’t what it was when I was teaching. My boobs no longer fit into my yoga clothes. I was horrified of what my yogi friends would think and afraid of my own judgement. I knew in my heart I wanted to go. That I needed to go. I just didn’t know if I could actually follow through.

Of course the morning was judgment free and wonderful. Our practice was outside in the backyard. It was hazy and cool. I connected to my voice and my body. I took the flow slow and at my own pace. My calves and hamstrings were angry but slowly began to loosen and by my last down dog my heels came to touch the earth. During savasana a light rain began to fall as connected to my breath and listened to Lisa sing.  I felt a peace with my body and my yoga for the first time in over a year.

As we gathered inside for Kirtan, my friend Ming gave me a big hug. “It’s wonderful to see you practice again, Terra.”  It brought tears to my eyes. I blinked them away and settled down into a cushion for kirtan.

Oddly enough, Ming is the only person I have actually talked to about my disconnect with yoga and my practice. A month or so ago, he held space for me over a beer without judgement. I was grateful in the moment and I am grateful for his words today.

Sometimes we just need an open mind, an ear and a hug to remind us where home is.

Feminism, Yoga

Hurricanes, Office Fashion and the Crazy Professor in the Women’s Studies Department

You can take the yoga teacher out of the yoga room, but…

Fashion Kitteh hates Yoga slobs….

For the past 5 or so years my daily wardrobe has consisted of yoga pants, organic tees and cozy wraps. When I started working full time again I definitely needed to make some shifts to my wardrobe.  You just can’t get away with yoga pants and wraps in the office, well maybe on Friday, but certainly not daily.  When I left my corporate pharma job, I vowed to never wear panty hose again.  Attire at the University is business casual for the most part, suits on meeting days, jeans on Fridays.  And yea, I have poured myself into panty hose more times in the past 3 months than I had in the past 6 years. The adjustment was brutal.

The curse of hurricane Sandy left me with a little blessing in disguise. It blessed me with a new wardrobe.

On the first night of the storm, portions of our roof blew off. We sustained water damage in nearly every room.  Other than the soggy carpets, the first thing I noticed was our office.  All of my yoga training binders and half of my yoga library were ruined. The piles of shoes not so neatly stacked in the corner, water logged.  Without power, we escaped to Vermont for 3 days of comfort. Upon our return, we began cleaning and taking inventory of the damaged items. That’s when I noticed the smell.  That musty-not-so-fresh-there-is-mold-growing-somewhere-smell.  My nose directed me straight to my closet. I opened the doors and found 75% of my clothes on the hangers damp and stinky. Leather boots, furry Uggs, a wardrobe of Lululemon, my favorite (still haven’t replaced them) jeans, a few suits and all the professional clothing I had begrudgingly put together for my new job.

Moldy. Stinky.

Stuffed in trash bags and sent to the dumpster. Gone.

Thankfully, Hubby is the more practical one in our relationship, so we were covered by insurance.

The thought of replacing a wardrobe was daunting to me.  I hate Jersey malls. [who the hell puts on make up and heels to go to the mall anyway? So rude!]  I haven’t been a big shopper since college where I successfully racked up over $5000 in debt to Victoria Secret, Urban Outfitters and Tower Records.  It took me years to pull my credit out of the Newbury Street gutter, and while I flirt with it often, I never want to climb back in. These days I spend my money on books, online programming (health, business, coaching, cooking), workshops,  kitchen tools and every so often, some new yoga junk.  I am not used to shopping for whole wardrobes that aren’t black and in a good organic + spandex blend.

The answer to my shopping woes was pretty simple….online.  Saved by the internets yet again! Thank you, Al Gore!

Etsy. Overstock. Bluefly.  +  45 mintues at the Jersey Shore outlets.  I successfully pieced together a new, professional-I-work-9-5-again wardrobe.   My shopping spree even included 4 new suits and dear God I hate suits!  I thought I did a pretty good job.  Then my perfectly pleasant, perfectly coiffed, always in the perfect pants suit co-worker commented…

“you always look so pretty…and flowy”

Fashion kiss of death.

Flowy…is most definitely a yogic adjective, not a corporate, I mean business one.

And then today, the IP Program Coordinator said, “I love your sweater. Damn, you have the wrap market cornered!” My only response was…I like to be cozy.  I think I should have consulted my Jersey-born, LBI raised niece. She would have forced me to stop being a yoga slob. Maybe the moral of the story is that I am meant to get my Ph.D. I can become that crazy professor with long silver hair, flowy skirts and obnoxious, chunky jewelry hand made from some tribe in Africa.  I will teach EcoFeminist Activism and go on tirades about how the patriarchy has violently caused a separation from nature. The 18 year old undergrads will talk about the crazy hippie, tree hugger  in the Women’s Studies department that does yoga in her office.

I will still wear a bra though.

Or I could ditch this whole corporate thing (again) and go back to teaching yoga. 🙂

Health, Yoga

IMperfect(ions)

IMperfect(ion)

One of my greatest challenges as a yoga instructor is my personal practice. Sounds silly. When I was teaching, I taught 5 yoga classes a week. You would think a personal practice should be a piece of cake, right? Wrong. oh so very wrong. One of the biggest reasons I scaled-back on teaching was the decline of my personal practice. The busier my teaching schedule got the less “time” I left for my own personal practice. Teaching yoga is not a personal practice. It is a gift you give to another person, but it is not a gift you give to yourself.

Right now, I am transiting from full time yoga instructor and Fempreneuer to a 9-5er with two (growing) small businesses and a personal yoga practice.

Personal. Yoga. Practice.

I have taken a long time to think about my personal asana practice.  In a recent blog post by my friend, Lana said “Labeling the way I feel at this current moment is more of a question-I’m questioning myself. Introspection. Svadhyaya perhaps.  It’s possible I’m just in a “winter” of my life-a dip-there’s highs, lows.”  Her blog post resonated deeply with me. After teaching so many classes for so long, I am ready to go within.  I chose to scale back my teaching because my asana practice, and yogic education (which should be never ending) seemed stagnant.

Svadhyaya Practice on the balcony in the sunshine.

So, while I am not longer teaching I have consciously made the choice to dive head first back into my yoga practice. My yoga and asana practice has become more personal. I haven’t felt a connection to community classes in a while, so I stopped going. This has been challenging since my social life tends to revolve around yoga studios but it’s what I personally need right now. And lets face it, until the new salary kicks in, I can no longer afford to pay $18-$25 for a drop in class.

Each morning as Stella sleeps, I spend time in meditation and light asana on my sunny balcony. With all the changes I am facing, it’s time for me to look within. For me, self-reflection always comes on the mat. One thing that keeps coming us is IMperfect(tion).

In many ways I struggle as a yoga teacher and a wellness coach over my lack of perfection. It’s the Virgo in me to want to fit in to the perfect healthy yogini mold. I want my belly to be flat, my arms and legs long and lean and I want not to reach for the salty and sweet snacks when emotions run high. But I am human and not always perfect. Even though my clients are successful and my students deepen their practice, inside, sometimes I felt like a failure. Which was not easy for the Virgo in me to accept. Virgos are perfectionists.

The perfectionist in me also struggles on the mat. In almost each yoga class I have taught, I reminded my students “this is your time on your mat. Let go of judgement. Dive into yourself and love your practice.” Coming back into my personal practice is helping me, yet again let go of my IMperfect(ions).

et al

More curves in the road of life…..

Life is always interesting and ever changing. Change is one of those things that I have always thrived on. When I was younger, I would create change by simply packing my bags and starting fresh in a new city. The older you get,  it seems that the less geographically mobile you can be. I’m not sure how the Hubs would take it if he came home and I told him pack your bags, we’re moving to Santa Fe, NM.

We’re not moving to New Mexico.

But I do have some pretty big news. I just signed an offer letter to work at Rutgers University.  I am excited about it and angsty all at the same time. Excited because this job will give the Hubs and I more breathing room financially. Angsty because it has been 2 years since I have worked in a 9-5 job setting.

What does all of this mean for LBG, yoga and my INspired Life Wellness Coaching?  Well, not much is changing besides my schedule, really.  I have already paired down my yoga teaching schedule. I did this a couple of months ago to work on developing my own practice (that has had its highs and lows, but that’s another blog post entirely).  LBG is still going strong. We’re a new company and we have had our fair share of growing pains as all start ups do. Nancy and I continue to be focused, determined and INspired to bring the Living INside Out Manifesto and philosophy to the masses. We have lots of plans up our sleeves, but  you’ll all have to wait until they are properly brewed.

The biggest change will be the scheduling of my private clients. No more day time hours. I will only be able to work with people in the early morning and evening hours. It will be challenging, but in the long run I am happy with my decision. Over the past few weeks I have had a number of doula client inquiries. Unfortunately, this is the one thing that I will have to let go of for the time being. 9-5 jobs just don’t mesh well with labor and delivery.

Health, Yoga

Keeping Motivated

When I was doing my Soul Sweat vinyasa training, one of the required readings was Effortless Prosperity by Bijan. It’s a good little book about living life, it has daily affirmations meant to guide you towards that good life. I sort of likened it to a dumbed down, modern day version of Book 1 of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras.

To remind you of your daily affirmations, Bijan suggests you write them on the palm of your hand so you have a reminder throughout the day. This was totally my speed. Before my iPhone, blackberry, file-o-fax, I was a notorious blue bic pen appointment setter on my palm. Naturally I followed Bijan’s suggestion and wrote my little daily affirmations on my palm each morning:

I am peace

I am light

And so on. It was a wonderful excuse for me to get artsy on my palm. When the 30 days of affirmations were up so was my palm artistry. I haven’t written notes on my hands since!

My question now is why?!? it was a fabulous daily reminder and I’ve just decided I’m going to do it again. Not Effortless Prosperity, but my own daily affirmations and mantras on the palm of my hand to keep my goals and intentions fresh in my thoughts. Maybe I’ll blog the pictures.

I wonder if it’s going to be a helpful change catalyst. Only time will tell. I’ll keep you posted!

Inspiration, Yoga

IMperfect…ion

One of my greatest challenges as a yoga instructor is my personal practice. Sounds silly, I teach 5 yoga classes a week, a personal practice should be a piece of cake, right? Wrong. oh so very wrong. It seems as if the hardier my teaching schedule is the less “time” I have for my own personal practice. Teaching yoga is not a personal practice. It is a gift you give to another person, but it is not a gift you give to yourself. Practicing yoga is a gift you give to yourself.

Generally, I am not one for making New Year’s resolutions but as we moved through January this was at the forefront of my mind. My practice, and yogic education (which should be never ending) seemed stagnant. So, I consciously made the choice to dive head first back into my practice.  Taking 4 classes a week, on top of teaching 5 classes a week, seems like a lot, but it feels amazing. It’s my own little way of immersing myself back into the one thing (besides my fiance) that I am in love with.

Choosing to step back from my private health counseling practice and take an active role in the ownership of Live. Breathe. Grow. wasn’t a decision I took lightly.  It was one way of immersing myself back into yoga. It’s not that I don’t enjoy health coaching, but living my yoga feels so much more in line with my spirit.

In many ways I struggled as a heath coach, mostly over my lack of perfection. It’s the virgo in me to want to fit in to the perfect healthy mold. I wanted my belly to be flat, my arms and legs long and lean and I wanted not to reach for the salty and sweet snacks when emotions ran high. I couldn’t necessarily achieve that and while my clients were successful and loved me as a health coach, inside I felt like a failure.  Which was not easy for the virgo in me to accept. Virgos are perfection.

The perfectionist in me struggles on the mat. In each yoga class I teach, I remind my students “this is your time on your mat. Let go of judgement. Dive into yourself and love your practice.”  When you teach and neglect your personal practice, it’s extremely hard to practice what you preach…or teach.

Coming back into my personal practice is helping me let go of my imperfections.  On Tuesday, Nancy and I took a yoga class with Wendy, one of our beloved teachers.  While working on eka pada koundiyanasana variations and pincha mayurasana consciously tried to let go of any “imperfections.” I kept my focus inside and on my mat. I let go of judgement, I didn’t look around to see the other people in the yoga room and I came closer to my perfect than I ever have.  It felt amazing….and a lightbulb went off.

I have short humeri.  My upper arms are just short. My elbow doesn’t even reach my floating rib. How could I have never noticed this before in my life?

This lightbulb was more like a flood light. It allowed my heart to soften for myself. My palms have never reached the mat in staff pose. I always attributed it to extra padding around my waist and hips. On Tuesday I realized that is not the case. I could be a string bean, with 10% body fat and my palms would still not reach the mat in staff pose. My palms will never reach the mat in staff pose. I have short humerus(es).

I find it almost ridiculous that it took me over 10 years of practice to come to this conclusion. But we’re all works in progress right? Each one of us is IMperfect. And that is ok.

Have you ever had a lightbulb moment over your IMperfect..ions?

 

Yoga

Loka Samasta Sukhino Bhavantu

Mantra makes me happy. I may not have the best chanting voice, but simply grumbling out of tune makes my heart sing. It simply puts a smile on my face. I stop caring about what I sound like or if I pronounced the sanskrit words perfectly and I just settle into the mantra. It makes my heart sing. The first chant I ever learned was Om Namah Shivaya. The chant itself has no direct translation, but when chanted over and over it is said it clears obstacles from your path.  Chanting or reciting a mantra can give us access to our creative spirit and bring harmony to our minds and bodies, creating wellness and vitality. At the very least, it lifts your spirits. Seems like a no brainer to chant away.

Lately I have been drawn to a new chant. I find myself reciting it during the oddest times: sifting through my wedding guest list, deciding on Save the Dates, analyzing over the next t-shirt design.  Lightbulb moment – these aren’t odd times, they’re times when I am feeling stressed and sometimes annoyingly un-yogic and even a little bridezilla. Hey, I live my yoga, but I’m also HUMAN!

The mantra I’ve been reciting, Loka Samasta Sukhino Bhavantu.

Unlike Om Namah Shivaya, this mantra has a direct translation:  May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life, contribute in some way, to the happiness and freedom for all.

It’s the perfect chant for a stressing bridezilla. Even if you’re not in the middle of starting a new business and planning a wedding. It’s the perfect chant for a stressing human.  This chant really gets to the root of my own yogic philosophy – living in the moment, not sweating the small stuff, act with peace, get through life with a smile on my face and a little humor. All of that is summed up in Loka Samasta Sukhino Bhavantu. No wonder I have been drawn to it in times of stress.  I love that my go to nourishment for stress is now a chant. 10 years ago it was a shot of bourbon and a pack of Camel Lights.

Thanks yoga!


Yoga

It’s NEVER too late to change what you want to BE when you GROW up

For me, after each New Year celebration I take time for reflection and rebirth. As I look back on 2010 I am amazed at at the growth Sprouting Wellness experienced.  We grew our Facebook fanpage from 0 to over 600 fans, helped 11 women along their path to wellness, assisted in 3 births, taught yoga classes and workshops at 6 different yoga and wellness studios in New Jersey, held 5 teleseminars and I published my first downloadable e-book. My head simply spins with gratitude when I think about how much my life has changed in 365 days. None of this would have been possible if I didn’t make a conscious decision to create goals and live authentically according to my values and passion.

Teaching clients to live authentically is the most important goal I have in my health coaching practice. Happiness, health and even prosperity only come when we connect with our own personal passion and mission statement.  It is with this in mind that I have made the decision to pursue an opportunity outside of Sprouting Wellness. On January 20th, I became the co-owner of Live. Breathe. Grow. yoga apparel company based in New Jersey.  Live. Breathe. Grow. is the culmination of inspiration, passion and dedication of my two dear friends and co-founders, Nancy Buckle and Heather Priel. Heather has decided to step down and follow her passion of opening a yoga studio, My Om Town Yoga in Westfield NJ with friend and fellow yogini Estrella Martins.

Live. Breathe. Grow. was created to reach out to and inspire women across the lifespan and the globe, by encouraging the development of a personal path leading to a greater sense of peace and purpose in life. Our hope is that our T-shirts will inspire women to stand in the truth and beauty of who they are along and help them tap into that energy and harness it for whatever purpose that moves them. Inspiration comes in many forms and one way to reach people everywhere is through an empowering message on a T-shirt.  We believe, in its simplest form, an empowering message can encourage people to live a life they love and bring their spirit into their every day lives and relationships.

My yoga, health coaching and life’s mission is to empower women to nurture their inner strength, balance and peace. I will continue this mission by bringing my energy and commitment to Live. Breathe. Grow.  Sprouting Wellness will continue to partner with local wellness studios and stores to offer yoga, wellness workshops and group health coaching, however after March 1, 2011 I will no longer be taking on private health coaching or birth doula clients.  I am so very excited about this new path on my journey and hope that Sprouting Wellness fans and former clients will continue to support me in this change.

You can follow Live. Breathe. Grow on

Has your career evolved over the past year?