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What is it saying? That track in your head. The one that you keep playing, kind of like that same CD that you always seem to have in your car. The old standby. You might not even like it that much, but somehow it always winds up on repeat…

What does this track say when you are in the middle of something challenging. Physically or otherwise… Is it encouraging? Is it skeptical? Is it defeating?

I have been thinking about positive self-regard this week. Do you have it? Where does it live?

I imagine this space lives in the heart center. It is warm and buzzing, accepting and healing. We can practice positive self-regard in Yoga, especially during particularly challenging asanas. 

Having positive self-regard during the height of exertion, physical or otherwise, even when we may not be archiving “perfection,” is a crucial skill in life It requires us to be a bit of an observer, gaining perspective as we become our own caretaker. We direct self towards encouragement and healing rather than destructive or negative energy. 

As always, accessing this space during practice makes it just a bit easier to do so off the mat. How wonderful!

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Backyard Photo Shoot

I began today at Fidelity with a 6:30 class at Fidelity. Summer vacation is in full swing and it was a small, but rewarding class. I asked them what they wanted to work on, and we settled on general technique. for 75 minutes we flowed. The sun rose behind us, we laughed a few times, and left feeling refreshed.

It is as if there is a part of me that is a student in the class as well. We are all learning from the teacher inside.

 Switching hats, I made my way home and worked for about 6 hours as the media executive I still apparently am. It was pretty awesome!
 
I am wrapping up, getting ready to teach my second class of the day, and loving this.  The thought struck me today: Is it really possible to get exactly what you are hoping for? Maybe for just today, the answer is yes.
 

Literally. It wasn’t easy though. I went to bed last night kind of dreading this morning’s Yoga for Runners class. The main reason was the start time: 6:15am. On-Monday-morning. Ironically, this is my class. I am the teacher. I decided on the day and time. Hah!

Post class, I can say it was so worth it. We spent 10 minutes warming up: Tadasana, Ardha Chandrasana and a few other poses. Then we went of a 20 minute walk/jog to and on the beach.

What a gorgeous sunrise, I almost forgot I was running.  The wind moved across my skin, cool and invigorating. The sounds of the ocean and the birds, the easy conversation with the class, lifted my spirit even higher. This idea of a running/Yoga combo at sunrise is something my husband and I have talked about for about a year. Today it became a reality, and I am so grateful.

We returned and went through about 30 minutes of standing, seated and supine postures, and then we closed with Savasana. Replenished, energized.  And we started the week with the sun! 

Peace!

59 days since my last post. I know. I actually talk to people about how to leverage social media for small business. What can I say.

Before I say any more, I am loving this. It isn’t a pace I can keep up very long, but I can do this right now. My day typically starts with a wake up before 6am for practice. I may actually be teaching a class, or rehearsing for later that week. Either way, by 8am I am activating the hybrid synergy drive and flying to Orange Park in my Prius. Some mornings it seems to sprout wings. 🙂

This is probably my last month with SQE, where I have been in advertising sales for 6 and a half years. I am finding it more enjoyable than ever before. Perhaps it is an in-the-moment sort of euphoric recall that I am experiencing. I am also realizing how much I care about my clients. I am training a wonderful woman to take over. She is not only doing a great job, she is making improvements in areas that we really need. She will take care of these clients, and I feel good about that. 

YogaShae is gangbusters. Well at least as gangbusters as I can handle right now. I am teaching at Fidelity National Financial 4 days a week. As SQE tapers down, I will offer workshops and privates there as well. I am teaching weekly at Yoga Den and will start at Ocean Yoga with 2 classes next week.

I am in two or three shavasanas a day. I think that helps keep my sanity.

What am I learning through this? How much I don’t know.

Is it worth it?

A few weeks ago, the class went into Uttanasana, forward fold. Even with gentle guidance to release their necks, let their heads hang, most of them didn’t. It was as if the entire class had a really tough day at work. I have been there. I remember what that was like. By the middle of class, they were better able to let go.

What a feeling.

Today I teach my first class at Yoga Den! Very excited. It is also the day before I close my last official issue of the magazine I sell advertising for. Lots of energy here. It’s hard to describe. I am trying to stay focused on one thing at a time, but I find myself jumping from task to task. Completing anything is a challenge.

Stop. Breathe. Center and Smile. Love my journey and giggle a bit at myself.

Okay, here we go.

Interesting practice tonight. I had an hour scheduled with my student, and she and I both had pretty difficult days. My energy was flagging and spirit a bit quiet and she was definitely run down.

This was my first experience teaching when I did not feel centered. So, that is what I did for several minutes, ujjayi breathing, centering the mind with a guided opening and rhythmic swaying of the arms. We warmed up and went into 15 minutes of vigorous flow. Engaged now, we followed with hip openers and postures to engage the hamstrings. Shavasana was a little longer than normal, and we ended practice replenished.

Tonight was a good lesson. I know there will be times that I am not as present as I want to be in the beginning of practice. If I can trust in the process, trust in the yoga, it will get me there.

Wonderful yoga today! After a brisk 32 degree run with my husband, we practiced some of the postures learned from this week’s Yoga for Runners workshop courtesy of Lululemon and Yoga Den. Just 15 minutes, but so necessary to warm and lengthen cold muscles. And, I love doing yoga with my husband. It is just the best thing ever. (Hearts.)

For lunch, my co-worker and I practiced in her beautiful office overlooking a lake here in Orange Park, Florida. She is another friend-turned-student who has been gracious enough to let me practice teaching. After a supine warm up, involving flexing and movement of ankles, knees and hips, we moved the spine through Cat Cow and then a gentle Down Dog. A few Surya A’s and then a focus on hips through the Warrior sequences, Side Angle and Triangle.

She was so present during the practice, and so intensely focused on each posture. I think of my journey on the mat and can’t help but smile at what is in store for her!

Well, it is 15 of 28 today. I have had two wonderful yoga sessions. First, Alyson’s Personal Practice at Yoga Den. I had to cut it short for an early meeting, so I took shavasana after the balancing series and headed out. It was actually a very pleasant meeting!

Then, my friend @Aurora28IF came over for an hour of practice. We had a great time. She has been so kind to let me practice teaching. We have experimented with music, flows, technique, and each time she gives me very valuable feedback. Thank you @Aurora28IF! I am so grateful for it!

And now, muscles spent, mind at rest, it is time for sleep. Peace.

On Mondays I practice with a friend. She is kind enough to let me lead and work on my teaching technique. Tonight we tried out  my Beat Yoga idea. Contemporary music guides us through Sun A’s and B’s, Side Angle and Triangle, a challenging balancing series and fun ab work. We took time to isolate the proper placement of the knee in Triangle and the shoulders in plank and wheel.

I got great feedback from my friend. The reality is that I will be transitioning to teaching yoga full-time this summer. As I prepare to leave a conventional wage earning life behind, I have a few “heart in throat” moments to quote another friend who owns her own business. Getting feedback tonight, and watching the traffic of this blog take off, helps to keep me centered on my goal.

Faith in my potential. This is my lesson for tonight. Peace.

Working on a gentle flow for my first regular private student tonight! As I break down asanas into teachable steps, I think about the first and most important element of yoga, the breath. I plan to introduce conscious breathing in the beginning of practice, and eventually work up to the Ujjayi breath.

Yoga means union or yoke, as in yoking breath with movement, body with mind, individual with the divine. Through conscious breathing, the process of unification begins.

I’m looking forward to teaching this class. I know I will learn more through this experience than my student. For that, I am grateful.

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