Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 60 - Fitting In

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Day 60: fitting in

There have been long stretches in my life where I ached to fit in with the mainstream and then shorter times spent rebelling against it and trying to fit in that way instead.

I acknowledged this yesterday after walking around the Plaza with my energy spent enjoying the sunshine with mama & giggling with her as she enjoyed window shopping.

It was when I looked at our photo and laughed at myself not realizing I was wearing purple Sacred Circus pants at this fancy outdoor shopping village. That would have never happened in my past! Mama continuous to teach me about what is important.

photo: Marie & Mary at the Plaza!

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 59 - Hanuman's Understanding

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Day 59: Hanuman's understanding

I have lots of favorite Hanuman stories, but one that keeps coming to mind/heart is his sharing with Rama that when he doesn't know who he is he serves Rama, and when he does know who he is he IS Rama. We continue to serve until we reach that connection - a beautiful concept.

photo: standing Hanumanasana

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 58 - My Dance Teacher

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Day 58: my dance teacher

Yesterday was my first dance/yoga trade with a wonderful human named Gina.

I am actively cultivating the feminine qualities I have always pushed down to be the "man" in my family (mom & me) growing up.

Oh my gosh, I love ballet! Our short session worked muscles in legs & feet that we didn't even get to in Bryce's Training. Can't wait to share once I get a handle on the sequences!

photo: beautiful Gina

PS If anyone has any pink/purple... (you get the point) clothes you are looking to get rid of, I'll take them. Less black!

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 57 - Marie's Morning Song

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Day 57: Marie’s morning song

My family (except sweet mama) is probably pretty annoyed that I’m such a joyful morning person.

This has been mama’s morning song for over a year and it is amazing how attention to how / what your first activity is can set the tone for your day. Marie sang from the moment she woke up until she got in her shared ride van 10 min ago. She’s probably still singing!

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 56 - Playing Music with Friend

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Day 56: playing music with friend

I bought this bansuri flute in Mysore, India 2 years ago and it sat in the closet patiently waiting for me to be ready. Tonight is the longest I have played any flute for some time.

Brad & I explored new sounds, instruments, and emotions last night for a couple of hours while our partners ate mac & cheese and watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer. To each their own!

photo: hubby & Laura enjoy their star wars shaped mac & cheese :D

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 55 - Divine Mother

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Day 55: Divine Mother

This Dhyaana Shloka has just ripped my heart open since I started singing it about 6 days ago. One night I couldn’t force myself to go to bed and just kept singing into the night.

There are so many practices, tools, strategies, talk therapy, you name it, for getting to the core of our fears and learning how to love ourselves. I believe music is a powerful tool for many of us and I’m diving back in - can’t stop singing!!!

Video: Dhyaana Shloka

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 54 - Music Filling My Heart With Joy

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Day 54: music filling my heart with joy

Many of you know I set music aside a few ago to pursue yoga. It was absolutely the right decision for me and I had no idea if I would come back to music at any point in my life.

The last few days I’ve spent skipping around, singing & just feeling really joyful. This crazy desire to play the harmonium came up and so I emailed Geetanjali in India to ask if I could break into her house to get her harmonium! Of course she made it happen.

This is my first go at it tonight! Falling in love with love through music is a beautiful path.

Video: Radhe Shyam

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 53 - Paying Attention

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Day 53: paying attention

How many times is our answer "uh huh" in "conversations"? When we really aren't listening to someone and thinking about what we are having for dinner or when we washed our hair last (me...shameful lol)

I have to be careful not to do this with my sweet mama because she tends to get in a loop and say the same thing over & over.

When I pay attention to the nuances of what she is saying, each time is slightly different with new inflections. A deep listening learning experience for me if I actually pay attention.

photo: Marie & I walked Mass St and stopped to have a cold pressed juice together

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 52 - Tape on My Heart

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Project 40 & Figuring it Out

Day 52: tape on my heart

Heart opening can come through grace, through practice, and by being near someone who wants their heart to open as much as you do. It feels like your heart is breaking, exploding & growing all at the same time.

This will be my final post about Bryce Delbridge for awhile as I need to let him go, but, for today I taped my heart to remind myself that this is where most of the work in yoga resides. All I see are hearts! The leaves, my beautiful mala...

A handful of us showed up to practice together (Mysore) this morning and we were able to give good assessments of ourselves and the 2 others who didn't attend Bryce's training. I have gone to countless yoga trainings, and the beautiful thing about Bryce's teaching is that we are able to walk away and actually use the knowledge in our own practice. How many times have I walked away from a training with my head exploding with knowledge and not know what to do next?!? SO MANY!

Bryce, you are a healer and our Bhairav. Thank you again for shining your light.

photos: Bryce used tape to point out our weaker areas (such as my left glute medius, left quad, right tricep, lats, rhomboids...you can see I have a lot to work on!) and I used some leftovers to tape my heart

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 51 - Bryce Delbridge

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Day 51: Bryce Delbridge

After 2 heart-opening , body-healing workshops at the Eudora Yoga Center we all wanted Bryce Delbridge back for more and for longer. When he agreed to do a week long 50-hour training we all did a happy dance together.

This is a yogi who can rip your heart open with one touch, one glance. After spending an incredible week getting a glimpse of the knowledge he has to offer, I can affirm that I am coming away with an expanded perspective as a yoga studio owner, yoga teacher, yoga student, and as a human.

I want Bryce to be connected with as many yoga students as possible and I am going to do everything in my power to help make that happen and also bring him back to our community time & time again. All the love and OM namah Shivaaya.

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 50 - Root Chakra

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Day 50: Yoga Training day 4, root chakra

Our dear teacher Bryce mentioned that the ability to keep the heart chakra (living a life full of compassion, love, patience...) open will only be possible if the root chakra (looking fear in the eye and dealing with it) is open.

It is not comfortable to deal with these fears, but yoga gives us tools / practices that are incredibly powerful in combination with 1) self exploration 2) self love.

group photo: group effort, group energy, group encouragement for deeper self study

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 48 - Day 2, 50-hour training, Soft Touch

Day 48: 50-hour training, day 2, soft touch

As yoga teachers we often guide students with our hands. My yoga practice buddy Katie and I are discovering that there are many kinds of “adjustments” for every asana: touching to bring awareness, resistance, facilitating the opening...

Bryce continues to show us that a gentle touch can bring release & deepening through trust & awareness. What a fantastic second day!

photo: Bryce adjusting extended side angle with his fingertips

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Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 47 - Day 1, 50-hour Yoga Training

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Project 40 & Figuring it Out

Day 47: day 1 of 50-hour yoga training

17 of us have committed to spend one week together learning from Bryce Delbridge. Today we all braved a public assessment of our bodies, learning how Bryce scans bodies from feet to head and customizes practices accordingly. We are all going to get the opportunity to do the same on one another each day. So exciting!

photo: learning a self-massage practice that is important to pair with a strength-building asana practice

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 46 - Law of Attraction

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Day 46: law of attraction

Books like "The Secret" & "Think and Grow Rich" really made many people contemplate the power of our thoughts & words.

What if what you say and think really became a reality? This concept is not modern and we could certainly discuss it using yoga words.

This year I’m going to put more effort into using this with money making. I tend to feel guilty and think I need to “donate” my time for good causes to be helpful in this world. What if I could do more good with means?

I’m putting it out there without softening it like I usually would:

I no longer feel that making money contradicts my yogic principals. Money can be made running a successful business and I’m going to do it and not be ashamed or embarrassed about it.

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 45 - Men in the Arts

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Day 45: men in the arts

I think we can all agree that our planet is out of balance right now.

Ladies, I believe it is our job as partners, mothers, friends to encourage the males in our lives to be comfortable exploring their feminine side. We are not just one gender - more than XX and XY, right?

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/…/how-science-helps-us-…/

Men that dance, sing, write poetry / music, draw...play the piano are SEXY.

photo: Mike, Marie & I went to Dinner Theater in Topeka last night. Cast was 90% male!

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 44 - Taking Our Health Reins

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Day 44: taking our health reins with both hands & eyes wide open

If we sat back and waited for doctors to tell us how to get a grip on the pillars of health (nutrition, sleep, stress reduction, exercise) we would probably end up in the ER.

Western medicine is amazing at addressing acute care, for example my mama's surgeon saving her life this year, but I haven't seen much attention paid to the specifics of really taking care of yourself.

A few supplements that have been very helpful for both mama and I:

1) Vitamin D
2) Hydrogen Water (if you don't know about this contact Alan Jay Redd!)
3) Magnesium

I just listened to a wonderful podcast with Dr. Rangan Chatterjee whose life was changed when his baby ended up in the ER for what he later found out was a calcium / vitamin D deficiency. He was blown away that he had never thought about these things (as a long-time practicing physician) and decided he would help his family figure things out and then went on to help his patients with these pillars of health, and now is an author, speaker...

He also found limiting technology in children kept them from being put on depression meds (depression scripts have gone up 400% in 20 years). I think we can all agree with that treatment and see the sad truth there.

I highly suggest your own thorough investigation of your specific needs/deficiencies. If you need help there are so many knowledgable people out there – for instance my friends / brilliant health coaches Christy Christy Olson KennedyAlan Jay Redd, & Kathleen Kastner Mortenson. I'm happy to share their contact info with anyone interested.

photo: mama and I are lucky to have access to this beautiful food and enjoyed making it & eating it together (wild caught salmon, garden greens, tomato/cucumber salad), Vitamin D & malic acid to make hydrogen water...fun science experiment!

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 42 - Who Says You Have to be "Happy" All the Time

Project 40 & Figuring it Out

Day 42: who says you have to be "happy" all the time

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Social media & plenty of other sources trick us into thinking we need to be "happy" all the time. What does "happy" even mean? I suppose we can dork out about the biochemical processes that cause this state, but I'll start by approaching it from its antithesis / a yogic point of view.

Swami Satchidananda summarizing Yoga Sutra 2.15:
To one with discrimination, everything is painful indeed, due to its consequences: the anxiety and fear over losing what is gained; the resulting impressions left in the mind to create renewed cravings...in this world, all experiences that come from the outside (nature, material things) are ultimately painful.

Oh my, if this is true we can wipe that fake it 'till you make it smile off our faces and just stay in bed!

I'll try again – what if we could think about "happiness" as remaining in a neutral state, uncolored by what is going on around us – a state of just being and less reflective of the outside world. I guess I just put a yogic spin on it anyway 🙂

note about quote: John Lennon travelled to Rishikesh (northern India) to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's ashram to study Eastern philosophy / meditation...

Project 40 & Figuring it Out - Day 41 - Alzheimer's Prevention

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Day 41: Alzheimer's prevention

Most of you know this topic is dear to my heart as my mother was diagnosed over a decade ago. Marie's mother had severe dementia and died very early. Her mother's sister also had severe cognitive issues.

Contemplating this line on my mother's side woke me up. I haven't taken the Apoe4 test yet, but am considering it to remind myself to make an extra effort to eat well / sleep / reduce stress – which can be preventative for so many diseases, but especially for neurodegenerative diseases.

Watching my mom do well with intermittent fasting and a huge decrease in sugar / carbs has given me hope. The books and scientists can tell me that THIS WORKS, but I have seen it with my own eyes...

I encourage everyone to think about your future and be empowered to take the reins.

Alzheimer's gene resource: https://www.apoe4.info/wp/