Archives

Tagged ‘practices‘
Ask for what you want

Ask for what you want

I stumbled across this delicious demonstration of asking for what you want today. I was first introduced to Jillian Meyers a number of years ago when Ali Shirley and I attended a Masterclass with the Janet Jackson dancers who were out on tour. Jilly stood out as unique, holding her own and with a presence that exceeded most in the room.

In this first video, she makes a proposal to a band she loves – Hozier. Her proposal is to collaborate together using her choreography and concept for their film clip. The second clip is the final result. So inspiring.

What could you ask for that you haven’t yet?

Return to Self

Return to Self

Even the Black Eyed Peas  are telling me to meditate.

“ Madness is what you demonstrate

And that’s exactly how anger works and operates

Man, you gotta have love just to set it straight

Take control of your mind and meditate

Let your soul gravitate to the love, y’all, y’all”

So I sit for 20 minutes in my return to sitting practice. It’s not meditation, it’s simply return to sitting – noticing what takes me away from being present. I took on this practice from the Summer Intensive Wisdom Course Leader training.

Then the Peace Angels cross my path again today. They have just returned from Salt Lake City on a tour to the Parliament of the Worlds Religions. People from all over the world and all religions were moved by their presence. Being in their presence really is a profoundly moving experience.

Truth telling

Truth telling

I’ve been afraid today. There’s even been tears. My symptoms increased and I got afraid.

Thank goodness I have such good support around me. I spoke to my committed listener this morning and she said, wellbeing issues are arbitrary and capricious. And, that the best place to deal with them is in reality. In other words, call your health professional, in this case my Gynaecologist. No, not Google. Yes, Google and I have an intimate relationship – I ask Google all of my questions, deeply personal and otherwise almost every day. But Google is not my health professional, even when Google provides me with information and often answers. Recently I Googled clotting. What I noticed is that out of the three websites that provided this very specific information, only one left me with that I didn’t need to be afraid, I just needed to find out what was so. The others, I was being pulled into a fear based mood of mild anxiety – in other words, I was left with, there’s something wrong here. That mood of anxiety that hums in the background like a distant swarm, the thrown way we have as humans called there’s something wrong here. There must be something wrong.

What if I created All is Well and I’m happy? Could I stand it? What if my circumstances were the perfect ones for my growth and development? Could I really be happy no matter my circumstances? Now is the time to practice.

ps. My Gynaecologist says not to worry. Plus, after surgery on Nov 9, I’m gonna eat chocolate again…

Collage by Danica Lani

Living a Great Life

Living a Great Life

What is it that gets expressed through the body and movement that can’t be articulated in words? Last night at a Biodanza class with Kate and Claudio, I met a man in his 50s who said, You can go dancing 6 nights of the week in Sydney. I was curious, Do you go dancing 6 days a week? He said, yes I do. Well, most weeks. I looked right into his smiling face and said, you have such a great life!

I was curious about what kind of dancing this man with the open heart and incredible skin was practicing. We’re talking biodanza, Nia, 5 Rhythms, Dancing Freedom and I hear No Lights No Lyrca is also happening here.

Anyone else think it’s wild that we can design our lives in a way that gives us joy and pleasure and fulfils on what matters to us?

What is:

Biodanza (neologism from the Greek bio (life) and the Spanish danza (dance), literally the dance of life) is a system of self-development that uses music, movement and positive feelings to deepen self-awareness. Biodanza

Nia is the art of movement the body’s way. Nia is a cardio-dance workout, a movement practice, and lifestyle based on the intelligent design of the body. nianow.com/about-nia

5Rhythms is a dynamic movement practice—a practice of being in your body—that ignites creativity, connection, and community. www.5rhythms.com

No Lights No Lycra is a casual free-form dance class in the dark for the pure joy of dancing. nolightsnolycra.com

Dancing Freedom is a movement practice to embody your freedom to live, love, create and be who you really are. allevents.in/sydney/dancing-freedom-becoming-whole

Photo credit: Alison Shirley

Wonderings on daily practices

Wonderings on daily practices

Practices keep me vital. So how does one choose which practices to do each day? I mean, if you’re anything like me, you could easily devote 3 hours a day just to do daily practices. From when I wake up in the morning, it’s time for yoga – asana, pranayama, making love, meditation, self-cultivation, chanting, purja, morning pages, vocal warm ups, physio/pilates exercises, oil swilling, uddiyana bandha, making the bed, kegals, diffuse an essential oil, multivitamins & iron and top it off with a green smoothie, let alone showering and brushing my teeth! And, if you’re anything like me, I don’t have 3 extra hours in the morning as well as getting sufficient sleep, vitamin D, remembering my posture and keeping present an empowering context for myself and my life.

Then there’s the daily promises I’ve made to not go to bed without having done. Practicing guitar, emptying my capture tool, singing and dancing daily for the next 3 years, return to sitting daily for the next 15 years and writing and publishing my blog every day for at least 30 days if not longer. Ready for a nap anyone? There’s another great practice – napping.

Fortunately/unfortunately, I am not superwoman and I do not get that all done in a day. And I’ve noticed that when I add a new practice in, something else has a tendency to fall out. Like one-pointed focus, I get fixated on my new practice and make sure I do it before going to bed. A few days later, I remember – oh! I haven’t been doing my other daily practice!

I’m curious about the practices that I could do for 3 years, or 15 years and the results they could bring. I wonder if noticing falling off the horse is just as important as returning to a practice.

How do you choose your practices?

Photo credit: Zara Albion-Lawson

The practice of love

The practice of love

Listen on Soundcloud: You Owe Me Nothing in Return (Cover) Alanis Morrisette.

I recorded this song sitting at home with my guitar. It’s one of my favourite covers –it’s the spirit of the lyrics that touches me. The practice of love without attachment and yet with devotion; love as acceptance of another exactly the way they are and exactly the way they are not and to have the capacity to be with any kind of communication inspires me.

Why do I call it a practice? Because you gotta practice it. We are not wired this way. One of the best ways I’ve discovered to true myself up to the practice is to notice wherever and whenever I’m not that. Luckily I have a rich ground of opportunity to see where I’m not being accepting, where I’m filled with my own judgements or stuck in the rightness of my position or point of view.

I remember the story of two colleagues – one was on a path of destruction called, getting myself fired and the other was standing for his greatness. She goes up to his desk and leaves him a note that reads, I love you and you can’t stop me. She wasn’t talking about romantic love, she was talking about loving another human being and relating to him as bigger than he was relating to himself.

What if we loved anyway?

The joy of Date Night

The joy of Date Night

I love wooing my partner. French restaurant here, movies there, lying in the botanical gardens together and soaking up the sun then popping down to the Opera Bar… Earlier in the year we had that conversation about date night. You know, the one that goes, hey, so when are you taking me out on a date? I say, yeah, it’s been a while – when are you taking me out on a date? That lesbian dilemma… If I take you on dates, who’s going to take me on dates?? What about when I want to be woo’d and taken and loved up…?

So I woman’d up (as they say in Big Hero 6) and got myself organised around regular date nights where I take my beloved, S’ra out. Tonight we saw Freeheld at Queer Screen Film Fest starring Julianne Moore and Ellen Page. I wish I’d brought those extra tissues I knew we’d need. Based on real life story of Lieutenant Laurel Hester and her life partner Stacie, Laurel’s dying wish is to be able to leave her pension benefits to Stacie.

freeheld real winner

The piece that was extra moving to me was having met Cynthia Wade last year, the Academy award winning director who created the documentary that became the feature film. She spoke at the Conference for Global Transformation in San Francisco and I’m pretty sure I cried throughout her entire talk… She an inspirational demonstration of following one’s path and being true to oneself. Making the bold move to live in New York and pursue her love of documentaries, she also made Mondays at Racines – a documentary about a salon that is free to women cancer patients once a month to get their hair done. Again, bring tissues…

Tracking Time II

Tracking Time II

A couple of posts ago, I shared that we’ve been tracking our time at work to get at the question, ‘How long do things actually take?’ I’ve discovered some more revealing insights about my relationship to what there is to do and handle in life. Tracking my time to the minute has given me a place to keep my focus. I notice I negotiate less with myself about what there is to do. Whatever is next is just the next thing. I spend less time arguing with myself, I consider less, put off less, wait less and take action more promptly.

I consider myself able to be rigorous when it comes to these kinds of things, so yesterday came as a complete surprise. When I look back at my time tracker for yesterday, there are gaps. In fact, there is a whole 9 minutes when I’ve got no idea what I was doing. Early on in the day it became evident to me that my concentration was all over the place. I Skyped my colleagues and said, wow, I’m so distractible today! While I wasn’t in pain, it was the first day of my period and I could feel the prana leaking from my body. It’s like the vitality drains from my face downwards and I’m a different person. It reminded me of the NASA experiments done on spiders. These images show a perfect cobweb made by a spider, then the cobweb made by the same spider after being given drugs, including caffeine. When we’re off, there are gaps…

Spiders on drugs

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effect_of_psychoactive_drugs_on_animals#/media/File:CaffeinatedSpider.jpg

NASA – Noever, R., J. Cronise, and R. A. Relwani. 1995. Using spider-web patterns to determine toxicity. NASA Tech Briefs 19(4):82. Published in New Scientist magazine, 29 April 1995. http://www.caffeineweb.com/?p=15

Effect of drugs on spider web construction

Who is Tantra Is Love?

Who is Tantra Is Love?

I first met Emma Power, the co-founder of Tantra Is Love when she was an Ambassador of the Bourke St lululemon athletica store. My expertise at lululemon was in goal coaching. Emma told me she’d been traveling to Thailand over the last six years and studying tantra. Given how powerful the work is, she naturally wanted to share it and she wanted to make it accessible to the masses. We had one goal setting session to start mapping out what she could offer and by when. Off she went and with her co-founder Eyal, began Tantra Is Love. Of course I went to the first Sexuality Workshop I could, to support Emma and yes, to satiate some of my own curiosity. I assisted as an ‘Emotional Support Person’ in the Tantra Is Love workshops over four years and now lead the Women for Women workshop.

Tantra is Love provides the most professional, down to earth, respectful space I’ve come across in the world of tantra. Their next Sexuality workshop is coming up on Oct 9, 2015. Ready to satiate some of your own curiosity? Book here.

What is Tantra? See here.

Keep an eye out for my upcoming blog posts on tantra…

Food: Do you have a big enough why?

Food: Do you have a big enough why?

Most of us need a ‘why’ big enough to eat consciously. Being present and giving thanks when eating are all valuable practices but it takes a big enough ‘why’ for most of us to stay true to our food choices.

I’ve been Paleo since 2010. How come? Our CrossFit trainer lent us the book, The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf and I read it. Highly engaging and entertaining, the man also backs up his theories with a lot of scientific evidence. When he recommended going paleo for 30 days, no grains, no dairy and no legumes, no processed sugar and see how you feel, I did and it worked. I felt clean. And light in a clear, good way. Interestingly a very similar way of eating was prescribed to me by my GP a few years earlier. So after 30 days, I just kept going and haven’t stopped for five years. Foods that I don’t eat, just don’t occur to me as food, treats or nourishing anymore. I look at a big sugary mud cake, and what I see is toxic – don’t put that in your body!

A friend of mine, in their self-confessed ‘unsolicited wisdom’, proffered the view that I might be a little too rigid in my food choices. I’ll be the first to admit my puritan tendencies. In fact, there is a now a new eating disorder for people obsessed with healthy eating called Orthorexia.  Gratefully I don’t suffer from any of the symptoms described. However, I considered my friend’s words and have been mulling them over. It occurs to me that when it comes to the matter of what food I put in my body, I am reliable for keeping my word. I do not stray. There are times on the rare occasion, where I will declare an exception for butter for example, when the person cooking for me has a passion for it. However, I made a commitment to no longer eat chocolate (raw, organic or cacao) due to the over-stimulating characteristics and the possible link to menorrhagia last year and not once have I ‘slipped up’, been taken by temptation or broken my word. In other areas of our lives, we call that level of commitment and honouring of one’s word, integrity.

It seems to help to have a big enough why. My body is not just my own. I’ve registered to be an organ donor so I intend to keep my organs as clear and clean as I can to pass onto the next human being. What’s a why that would be big enough for you?

 

* Roo burgers on raw cauliflower ‘rice’ #paleo #rawfood