Sunday evening I left Santa Cruz, CA for the airport. It was the last of my 10 days in CA, the final day of a nine month life coaching immersion. The wave of this immersion had been building and building over the course of five days.
And just like that it was over.
The marinating, the savoring, the building, the learning had come to a conclusion. With hearts permanently connected, hands strung together, and a certificate signed we completed the process of closing, of letting go, of destroying this experience so that we could move on, and move out in the world to create anew.
On the ride to the airport I wondered what I would create in the upcoming days, during this time of transition. Those of you that have been part of a sweet like minded group engaged in a transformative process know in your bones what I speak of. Those of you immersed in yoga teacher training know what I speak of.
I knew I had a choice. I could come back home feeling exhausted from the intensity of it all. I could come home feeling heavy, feeling sad because it was over. I could have chosen to feel anxious about integrating it all. I could have told myself it would take me days and days to get over the red eye flight from California.
I made a conscious commitment to go the other direction. To continue to build on this energy, this excitement, this creative force when I landed back in Kentucky. I would rest when I needed to rest. I would work when I felt inspired to work. I would savor each bite of food I took. I'd take time to connect to my body. I'd be open to receive and express appreciation. I wouldn't let my head get too far forward of my heart.
And this is what I'm thinking about this week. And this is what I'm teaching this week in my yoga classes, the practice of brahmacharya.
My translation/interpretation of brahmacharya is not celibacy (nope, most definitely not), but regulation, moderation of energy.
And in this context I am referring to energy as the amount of aliveness one feel's within oneself.
In yoga classes I am asking that students assess the energy they feel at the beginning of class.
How does your body feel? What are the foods and drinks you've taken in today? With a curious and nonjudgemental mind ask how those foods and drinks have increased or decreased your aliveness. Be in the place of not knowing, be willing to be surprised.
After a few moments shift to your mind. What is the tone of your mind today? What are the thoughts you've been having? What are the experiences you've taken in today? The books you've read, the images you've seen, the conversations you've had....have they increased or decreased your energy, your aliveness? Again, be in the place of not knowing, be willing to be surprised.
Shift your focus to your breath. Without any particular rules, begin to breathe in any way that brings you into your body. Knowing that breath is energy and energy is the thing you are made of, move the breath in any way that helps you to feel more present in your body. If your body wants to move, allow it to move. If your breath wants to make sound, let it make sound.
From this place, begin to examine different areas of your life.
Where are you filled with energy, ease, excitement, presence?
Where are you feeling anxious, depleted, confused, and/or stressed?
Where in your life do you feel free and liberated?
Where do you feel constricted, restricted, or obsessive?
Lots of food for thought, eh?
And this is where I am feeling so energized these days.
This integration of yoga lifestyle + life coaching.
Lots more to come Friends.
I've missed you.
PS - I'm a certified life coach, wahoo!!!!