Posts In: Short thought

The case for slow…

November 18, 2017

Anyone in my classes will tell you that the past few weeks have been pretty slow. Fewer poses, longer holds, more consideration, more time to be.

Classes last week of course were an exploration of yin for many – after the week I spent in training with the fabulous Norman Blair. But even before then, and now since – a very definite movement towards slow. I joked the other day that it was a reflection of the dark outside but I actually think it’s a bit more than this.

Because life for so many of us (and I am very much included) is so, so very fast. Filled with all of the next things that need doing, and the next places that we need to be.

And even now as the days turn darker (there is a link – just not the only link!) we’re pushing ourselves to maintain our spring/summer levels of activity – and as Christmas approaches to perhaps do even more! No matter that at a deeper level we’re naturally programmed to do less.

So my practice, and by extension yours if you’re a student, is slowing.

And for it I feel infinitely better. More grounded, more at ease, more nourished, more able to make the right decisions – in every walk of life. I sincerely hope you feel it too.

Slow, right now, is definitely where it’s at. And if you’re not already trying it, maybe it’s time to give it a go!

Choices

June 25, 2017
Choices - yogalustco

For much of my life I’ve taken on responsibility for the choices made by those around me – people close to me, people not so close to me. Ultimately, I’ve made whatever people have thought of me (and how they’ve behaved towards me) my cross to bear.

I’ve made it my fault when they’ve chosen to attack rather than understand. I’ve made it my fault when they’ve assumed rather than asked. I’ve made it my fault when they’ve chosen to (whether quietly or loudly) judge rather than accept. I’ve made it my fault when they’ve decided to mock, not hold out a hand. In this latest walk of life, I’ve made it my fault when they’ve chosen him over me.

I’ve been judged to be too much, not enough and everything in between.

And all of it I’ve assumed responsibility for. Somehow my choices, my behaviours, my knowledge, my appearance, my love have not been enough for them. My ‘me’ has not been enough.

The thing is it’s not really my responsibility at all what other people choose to do or think, it’s theirs. Which, writing this today, seems pretty simple but somehow is a revelation that eluded me for years. Weird how sometimes the pieces just click.

Because I’ve been half a foot in one world and half a foot in another for all this time. And I wonder how many of us are doing similar – because we’re choosing to make others’ choices our own.

It of course can be a hurtful realisation in some senses – there are numerous times where people haven’t chosen to stand with me but against me, explicitly or otherwise. But being hurt by someone else’s belief that you’re somehow not good enough is far less painful than being hurt by you yourself believing you’re not good enough – which is what I’d been doing over and over. For years.

Perhaps it’s about time that stopped.

#pianomanmax

June 2, 2016

Funny how it takes only the simplest of things to take you away from your day and back into your self…

This guy, just playing away as I popped out to get lunch, was amazing. Thanks Max 💗

SO. MUCH. LOVE.

April 29, 2016

We’ve all been there – when life feels so full of negativity and bad stuff that you wonder what it’s all about. Well today I saw fellow yoga teacher trainee, Kate Robertson’s gofundme pot hit the £400,000 needed to get her husband Mike to the U.S.A. and enrol him in a treatment programme that might just save his life. And my heart felt full to burst with love for the people of this world.

The money has been raised in just over a week with donations flooding in from people all over the globe, some of whom know Kate and Mike but most of whom don’t. They had to be in the States next week or not at all and to see this huge community pulling together to help them in this way has been both astonishing and amazing.

And Kate…I still don’t know her that well in all honesty (and I’ve never met Mike) but her absolute positivity in the face of such difficulty and sheer refusal to acknowledge the impossibility of the task in hand is awe-inspiring.

There’s nothing more to say other than to send love and luck to the pair of them. And to urge you, if you can, to keep donating and sharing. They no doubt have a long (and expensive) road ahead of them now. But at least they’re on their way.

https://www.gofundme.com/donate4mike

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As I sit here today planning my next yoga classes I’m remembering what it was like to actually teach for the first time last week – nerve-wracking and exciting but also surprisingly calming.

It felt a lot like coming home I guess, which is exceptionally reassuring. And comforting too.

This is my path. I’m happy I’ve found it.

 

 

Dear Valentine

February 14, 2016

It’s a strange day, Valentine’s Day. On the one hand you have lots of people taking the time to tell someone close to them how much they are loved. But on the other you have just as many people feeling lost, disillusioned and alone.

Plus of course all the people for whom the day passes without even a glimmer of recognition.

So this Valentine’s day, after you’ve reached out to those you love (skip this step if you need to!), why not reach out to someone you don’t know. Buy a ‘pay it forward’ coffee at your local coffee shop (see suspended coffees for more on this), give up your seat to a stranger on the tube, donate to charity or volunteer. Whatever it is that’s appropriate to your day, and achievable within your means.

Because it’s a pretty appropriate day for a random act of kindness no?

Every day is a new beginning. Every day has something to offer. And every day (yep, every day!) has something beautiful to show you.

This is something I’ve learnt over time – that you can find beauty in even the most difficult of situations. As long as you stay open to possibility, and open to the world.

For me it’s in the symmetry of a beautiful piece of architecture, an autumn leaf recently fallen to the ground, beams of sunshine breaking through a cloud, someone’s smile on the commute to work, half an hour to yourself with a candle glowing, the smell of rain…

To see it though I think you need to be a part of it. You need to contribute beauty too: to project love, practice gratitude, and offer up a piece of yourself to the world.

How much more beautiful could we make this world, if only we tried. If only all of us walking around with our eyes glued to a phone for example looked up and paid attention to what was going on around them. Crazy huh? Or not so much.

Something I read the other day, on the Manduka blog, was Yogi Bhajan on the difference between fate and destiny:

“Fate we get out of bed and roll with the punches of life. Destiny, we get up, we set our energy for the day and attract circumstances that reflect the energy we have taken time to cultivate.”

Put out good energy, get good energy back. Contribute beauty, see beauty. Makes perfect sense to me…

Funkin’

January 18, 2016

No matter how many times it happens nor how, on a good day, I’m able to recite gazillions of strategies and tools that can be used to combat depression, when the funk hits it hits and it pretty much always feels impossible.

Since Saturday afternoon I’ve been feeling like this – low, numb and voiceless.

I want to just sleep, and hide away. Not see anyone or do anything. Not talk, or socialise. Not be visible to the world in any way.

I cancel calls with my very best of friends. I don’t reply to texts. Conversation with the other half grinds to a (silent) halt.

But I’m going to beat it. So I get out for a run and, yes I feel better. But then I get home and feel worse again.

I get up and go to work. Again, I feel better. But then I’m done working and I feel worse. Again.

It’s tedious. And tiring. And really such a waste of time.

I feel like someone’s dropped a blanket over my brain. You know like you do with animals when you’re trying to pacify them… My senses are all in the dark. I can’t think to process anything. And I can’t think to find my way out.

It’ll pass I know but I wish I could rely on being able to take more control of it all. Any tips? Would love to hear them.

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