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Laughter Yoga: Saturday Morning Smiling

Jennifer’s posting about laughter yoga on her blog: Flotation Devices: Staying Afloat by Finding the Flow
10/16/11

“…just an hour of ho, ho, ha-ha-ha’ing and laughing without reason opened me up from my core to my head….I felt all kinds of wonderful pops and cracks throughout my spine and neck as the muscles around them relaxed and warmed up. For someone so intrigued by pranayama practice, I was thrilled to work with the breath in such a unique way–standing and moving and laughing–not necessarily sitting in lotus pose and doing ujayii breath for 20 minutes straight.”

Read the full posting here: http://flowtationdevices.wordpress.com/2011/10/16/saturday-morning-smiling/

Laughter Yoga: Lessons in LOLing

Jennifer says:

“I took one of his classes back in October, and the effects were immediate. It’s no secret that taking in more oxygen makes you feel good, and that’s the whole point of Laughter Yoga: to loosen up, open the lungs, work the diaphragm, and BREATHE!”

“Bob always starts class by asking us to check in with our bodies and mind, to list on a scale of 0 to 10 how present and open we feel. I came into class as a 3 and just an hour and 15 minutes later was boosted to an 8.”

Check out her full posting here: http://flowtationdevices.com/2012/02/27/lessons-in-loling/

The Power of Vulnerability

Brene’ Brown suggests that we see connection – and key to experiencing it is:

* Believing we are worthy of love and connection

* Being vulnerable – being and showing who we really are, rather than some “perfect” self we think we should be. This is a courageous and compassionate way of living.

And I would add – it takes practice.

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Protect or Express: Our Choice

I’ve lived my life predominantly under a cloud of self-protection. In some darkness. Some hiding.

It’s a natural response to the world for some people. As kids, particularly sensitive children, we hold our breath or body to protect ourselves from the bombardment of stimuli from the world, including arguing parents or unexpected barking dogs, etc.

Constriction is not bad. Left unconscious, though, it can leave patterns of stress and pain in the body-mind.

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My Body’s Not “Achey” – it’s “Opening”

When I feel an ache, I could be angry with my body for not feeling “good.”

That’s not particularly helpful, because then I’m feeling achey AND angry.

So I looked for another perspective, and it came to me. When I’m feeling an ache or a stretch, that’s because my body is opening. The ache or stretch feeling lets me know my body is opening.

And then I feel grateful!

PRACTICE: The next time you feel an ache, slow down, breathe, noticing the ache, and imagine the area opening and stretching. Choose gratitude!

My Body Is Not “Old” – it’s Well Enjoyed

I practice yoga and each day it seems I discover a new ache. Yoga helps to alleviate a lot of my run-of-the-mill aches, thank goodness. But once in a while this idea comes to me that I’m “getting old.” More and more people I see in public seem to be getting younger, too!

I’ve realized that age is relative and somewhat flexible. (more…)

Why Marriage/Commitment is Helpful

Marriage is a microcosm of some of our must fundamental endeavors as a humanity.

One of the biggest things people want? To belong.

And one of the biggest things values codes and religions try to teach? How to get along with others. In addition to giving life meaning.  (Whether or not you practice a religion or spirituality, they have influenced culture and the nature of relationships – and ceremonies!)

A Marriage can represent all of this.

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Nothing more Valuable than Presence

Is there anything more valuable than presence?

Actually BEING here. Experiencing life. Rather than experiencing what we “think” about life; what we think about the past; our future thinking…

Presence. It’s so fundamental. So easy to overlook.

And so important….

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What? and How? win over Why?

I’ve found that, as I pay more attention to the present moment, the question of “Why?” has become less important.

Why is the sky blue? Why does this flourless chocolate cake taste so good? They can be helpful questions to explore and many such questions have probably launched whole lifetimes of discovery.

But for me, now, I find that I’d rather explore:

What does this cake taste like?

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A 2012 World Blessing

May presence open the hearts of men to the love we thought we had to fight for.

May presence open the hearts of women with the power that we already are.

May presence open our eyes to the man, woman, love and power within each of us.

PRACTICE:  Feeling love-less or power-less? Try this 5 minute practice. Stop your day. Breathe for one minute – deep, conscious breaths – that’s about 20 for a minute. Use the other 4 minutes to notice – in what ways is there already love in my life? Or if you’re wanting to experience more power – in what ways do you already have power? If you wish, journal, making a list.