Musings on all things inspiring

Archive for January, 2011

The Power of Rituals

My whole experience as a monk for 10 years was an exercise in daily rituals. There are a few I feel are indispensable,  no matter what your role in life.  I’ll talk about them more, but first I wanted to share a post on another blog that got me thinking along these lines. check it out: Rituals

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Yoga Alignment

Yoga class inspired me today! The theme was “Trust” and as such we got into a lot of poses where we had to trust ourselves, and others where we had to trust a partner. I had a particularly awesome breakthrough with SuptaVirasana, Reclining Hero pose, having to trust my capabilities as I went beyond the limits of how deep I have been able to go in the past.

By starting at my knees and being super-attentive to the engagement of my muscles all the way up my quads, I was able to transfer the bulk of the effort to my legs, which allowed the lower back to be free and relaxed (in contrast to the intense compression I usually experience there). I was able to get my head to the floor and rest there comfortably until it was time to come up (normally I would be tweaking my lower back and holding out as long as I could before aborting and coming out of the pose early!). I really believe in the power of proper body alignment as the foundation of being able to go deeper into a pose more comfortably. Then harnessing the rhythm of the breath to regroup and secure the muscular tension on the inhale and then let myself expand and sink a little deeper into the pose on the exhale. Doing this a number of times, i find I can go deep into a pose that at first I could only barely stretch into. Have any yoga tricks of your own?

Stay Inspired!

Happy New Year to everyone who is ready to learn the lessons from the past year, put those experiences behind you, and move into this New Year with renewed enthusiasm and determination to make it the best year of your life to date!

This is my resolve anyway, with the theme for this year to “Stay Inspired!”

So just how do we do that? Good question! The first answer, of course, is to BREATHE! Not just breathe like you have always been breathing…unconsciously, unenthusiastically. But to breathe like you mean it! After all, “Inspire” means to “Breathe in”…So, BREATHE IN DEEP! Take in a full breath of life into your lungs.  Do this OFTEN. FEEL your connection to the Life Force within you and the world around you. Make your determination to meet life head on to get the most out of whatever experience it brings to you!

So how do I stay inspired? I have been thinking about this, there are many random things that can produce momentary fits of inspiration, but to STAY inspired for the long haul requires a routine that supports your well-being. For me this includes:

  • Daily Meditation
  • Introspection
  • Study of Inspiring people and thoughts
  • Exercise (my favorite is Yoga)
  • Service
  • And of course…regular conscious breathing practices like those I teach through Breathflow!

Keeping these elements consistently in my life helps me to keep my perspective on the bright side. Oh yeah there is one more: TAKE ACTION…LOTS of it! like Reaching out and interacting with others, especially when I begin to feel low. So reach out…How do YOU stay inspired?