Facing what is. We can back away from the world, both our own personal dilemmas and the times we live in. But when we face them with presence, we can use these very same troubles as a pathway into a deeper connection to Self, to the place within us where we are deeply connected to each other and to the energy of the universe. I really do mean “the universe,” because if the physicists are right about the Big Bang, we are all the stardust of those first atoms.
This chaotic world–with myriad crises and uncertainties, seems nonstop. This fog of collective unease, underlying our constant pressures and priorities is exhausting. Yet, when I was asked to write about releasing dread, I couldn’t do it. I said that the release happens not when we simply shake it off, or roar like a lion, although that can help. Real release occurs when we begin to create a wider space within, from which to observe the angst. This means being in discomfort, saying yes to what’s arising without tuning out or distracting ourselves. We can roar and move with a round of bouncing to help us find a wider, more spacious state of mind. From this place, the dread feels very small, perhaps even insignificant, perhaps even gone. In the moments after our practice, if we attune to our body sensations and our breath, we are in the present, where the story loses its grip. Is there still dread? Take some time to practice with me and see.
Yoga and meditation don’t isolate us from what is by putting us in some kind of trance state. Rather, these practices help clear away what obstructs us from knowing our connection to the whole of life, to that stardust energy. They build resilience, and help us stay connected to what is, without feeling overwhelmed or hopeless.
Developing your own personal practice is more important than ever. In the rising tide of variants and subvariants, it’s not always possible to gather together to practice or to be led by a certified yoga professional. You will feel better each day, more hopeful about our troubled world and your own place in it, if you roll out a mat or in some other way set yourself up for your regular morning practice.
∞ It may look like a morning run, followed by a meditation.
∞ It may look like an outdoor breathing practice or dancing indoors, followed by a relaxation sit or yoga nidra.
∞ It doesn’t have to look like anyone else’s practice.
What kind of movement brings you joy? Do that and learn tools to focus and breathe through whatever is arising, so you can calmly be with what is with self-compassion.
Let’s face what is together and redefine our lives, based on the knowledge of our deepest links to the universe. Here are two special events for you.
YOGA FOR YOUR MOOD Immersion at Kripalu
Practice with me Kat Larsen, and psychotherapist Deb Lubetkin, PsyD, in an environment of love and acceptance, not to mention soul-nourishing food and the woodland beauty of Kripalu in the Berkshires. This five day retreat is the ideal way to reconnect, assess habits and shift routine with the help of nutrition, yoga and mindfulness. Weather permitting, sessions will be outside and in. Participants most often report returning home with a reinforced sense of wholeness and love.
YOGA FOR YOUR MOOD Online Workshop
This live, virtual event through Yogaville is a weekend of self-care, with skills intended to enhance emotional balance, inspire personal awakening, and build stress resilience. We’ll be worldwide on zoom, so this will be a luscious personal retreat, with elements for deepening your home practice.
There’s a whole lot more where that came from, and these short interventions can have a powerful impact on the rest of your day.