Little known fact: I’ve been practicing yoga — with varying degrees of devotion — for over 12 years. Or in other words, since I was 15 years old.
I wish I could tell you that I ‘discovered’ yoga in a dizzy haze of bliss, at a mountain-top reggae festival, with a gaggle of sun-kissed friends & the guidance of a guru named Snuggle Moonshine Bear.
But no, I came to yoga as so many of us do — because my body was in crisis, my life was at stake, and there was nothing left to try.
At 15, I was blinking back into reality — after starving myself to 94 pounds, in the visegrip of anorexia. My doctors told me that ballet, running & weight-lifting (my self-medications of choice) were out of the question. My emaciated body — and weakened heart — wouldn’t be able to handle the stress.
They suggested yoga. Gentle yoga. An hour a day, tops.
And so, I found myself on the mat. Studying the delicate art of not hating myself. Coming back to life.
Feels like many, many lifetimes ago.
Still makes me cry.
And here I am — countless sun salutations later. With a little more wisdom. And a lot more hope.
In honor of being alive, I give you:
3 lessons from 12 years of yoga…
: There’s no substitute for showing up.
It doesn’t matter what you’re creating — a book, a business, a yoga practice, an entirely new way of being in your body . . .
You can read every guide, take every course, watch every tutorial, hire every expert, research & vision-board & dream & scheme.
But there’s no replacement for showing up & doing the work. The real work, not the pre-work. (You know the difference.)
: DEVOTION is an action, not an emotion.
Want to know what you’re devoted to? Look at your calendar. Examine how you actually spend your time, on the planet.
If you ‘can’t find the time’ for an hour of yoga, three times a week — or whatever else you say you want to do — that’s fine.
Do something else. Check your email. Fly a kite. Learn to crochet. Host a tea party. But don’t kid yourself — it’s tiresome. Be honest about what you’re devoted to.
: You are stardust.
Joni Mitchell wasn’t kidding. The foundational elements of your body — carbon, nitrogen & oxygen — were literally synthesized in the deep interior of ancient stars, billions of years ago. Stars that shattered, and gave birth to planet Earth — to paraphrase NASA astrophysicist Michael Loewenstein.
Think about that, whenever you question whether you’re good enough, beautiful enough, talented enough. Worthy of what you want.
You are extraterrestrial, super-celestial, the walking descendent & living heir of a luminous sphere.
You are light, time, the cosmos itself.
You hold God Power. The power of absolute creation.
I’ll namaste to that.
And now, a brief word from our sponSOAR . . .
I don’t have ‘favorite’ clients. That would be like choosing ‘favorite’ children. Totally uncool. But if I DID have a collection of all-time favorite clients . . . Anna Guest-Jelley would be on the shortlist.
Anna is a Body Empowerment Educator & the creator of Curvy Yoga — a new style of yoga designed especially for bigger, curvier bodies.
Anna’s new digital book — PERMISSION TO CURVE — is a collection of 60+ poses & sun salutations for yogis of every size, age & ability. It’s a gigantic permission slip to do yoga, your way . . . and (sweet savasana!) it’s officially HERE!
There’s two curvalicious versions: the basic e-book with a handful of video lessons ($25) and the mega-deluxe-fantastico e-book with all 60 videos ($97). Want to save 25%, on either version? Enter the uber-special code — UNICORNS — upon checkout.
Whether you’re a total yoga newbie, a lifelong yogi, or a professional instructor, PERMISSION TO CURVE will open your heart . . . and show you a lotta new moves.
Flow over here, and om shanti OWN it already.