Today's post is practically a direct quotation from a yoga DVD that I have, "Yoga for Weight Loss" (element). I don't like to think about yoga being for weight loss, but if you fine-tune your mindset, you will make better choices and end up with far less excess fat on your body. The DVD is a nice mix between more vigorous moves, and coaching that keeps you in the present moment, focused, relaxed. One of the best parts is the instructor constantly reminding you to smile - you can concentrate and work hard, while staying relaxed, grateful and appreciative of your body's efforts.
Ashley Turner, the instructor, provides cues that really help you to internalize the practice. To some of you, this will simply sound cheesy. But to those of you who know how to let it in, can look past the surface sounds, can look behind what it all means, will understand that these words and ideas are incredibly profound. And this will encourage yoga to change the way you live... which is really what it is for. The tips are so important to me that I took about 45 minutes to an hour to copy them into my favourite writing book - a gift from a very important person.
So when you do your yoga, workouts, make your meals... or simply live your life, keep the following ideas and advice in mind:
"Being empowered means pulling the source of power inside. 99% of messages we get from the media is to look outside ourselves for validation and acceptance. 'When I have this, or when I look like this, then I will be good enough.' Yoga reminds us that all the outer circumstances are ever-changing. The more we identify with outer trappings, the more we suffer when they change. The more we anchor ourselves inside, focusing on how we feel, building inner strength and self-worth, the more content, confident and powerful we become. The better we feel, the better we look.
"One of the easiest ways to swerve off our centre, is to constantly say yes, to everything and everyone. Consider which activities, relationships and foods enhance and nurture you, and which ones don't. Making choices wisely is a hallmark of how worthy we think we are What am I ready to release and let go of, in order to move forward in greater balance and truth? Be grateful to those people, activities and foods that uplift, inspire and support your greatest vision and biggest dreams. The more we tune into sensation, the more we can feel, intuitively, if a choice is uplifting and enhancing, or depleting and debilitating. We get a hit and feel a green light, yellow light or red light from inside. Confidently following this intuition is empowerment - following the voice of truth within. Once we begin to celebrate what our body does, rather than obsessing with what it looks like, we start to appreciate our body as an instrument, not an ornament.
"Yoga is a process of transformation - a system for identifying and shedding disfunctional patterns and beliefs, and activating your untapped potential. Taking responsibility for all our actions and how they affect our lives is the first step in empowerment. From here, we consciously choose to create the life and body that we want. The responsibility is ours. Visualize the body and the life that you want to create. Feel it alive and happening now. See it in your mind's eye, and feel it in your bones. Consider what habits, relationships and thoughts need to shift in order to bring you into balance. Weight and food issues are often about being out of balance: too much work and not enough play, not enough time to calm down and properly nurture ourselves. Often we reach for food because it is the easiest way to comfort ourselves and de-stress. If you're hungry, ask yourself, 'What am I really hungry for?' Often we are hungry for a nap, laughter or downtime. Put yourself back on the priority list. What do you really need? Be grateful for the people who support and challenge you to become the greatest version of yourself. It has been said that the five people closest to you directly reflect your inner state. Consider the five people closest to you. How do they live their lives? Do they inspire and uplift you? If not, who does? Building a strong network of support is essential to achieving your goals. 'I love myself, so I take loving care of my body. I create my own life, the way that I want.' Yoga teaches us that our greatest challenges are by far our greatest opportunities to grow stronger, clearer and wiser. More loving and more powerful. Recognize your goal to lose weight and live happily and freely in your body as an opportunity to rise into your greatest potential. Continually challenging the body, mind and heart to grow stronger, bigger and more open is life's greatest gift. To evolve. We deserve to be happy in our bodies - here and now. Together we can reach our goals - creating a balanced, healthy and happy life. JUST KEEP SHOWING UP.
Appreciate showing up for yourself. Feel the quality of energy inside a little more centred, authentic and grounded. Ask that it set the tone for the rest of the day, the rest of the week. Serving your deepest truth, and highest good.
Today I am releasing the old, and making room for the new.
"Yoga for Weight Loss" can be purchased at:
*photos courtesy of: