Monday, December 30, 2013


As we close out 2013 reviewing the events, what was learned and what is still left undone, let me salute you: Happy 2014! Once again we begin anew. Starting fresh is a moment by moment practice. Not only can we begin fresh each day, but we can do so in each moment. The most important thing to remember is that no matter what mistakes you make or where you may miss the mark, you always get another chance. We can press the restart button and refresh ourselves daily. In fact, in any given moment you can begin again. This is particularly important for me to remind myself. In the past, my all-or-nothing mentality had me throwing up my hands and being so critical. I remember getting into a terrible argument with my dad and feeling I had blown it, or gaining 20 pounds and thinking I had completely messed up. When I throw up my hands and stop trying, I lose self-esteem and feel badly, but what helps me today is knowing that no matter what mistakes I make, I get another chance. My intention is to have a loving attitude towards myself and live a hopeful life. One thing that I can count on is that wherever I put my mindset, that is the direction I will go. 

This year, make your intention to have intention. Be mindful of the way you set yourself up in each moment. Ask for guidance and for wisdom as you begin each action. Even the smallest action can be fueled by the source energy of creation. When you awaken in the morning, ask to be guided. When you choose your breakfast, before seeing a dear friend, or prior to scheduling a meeting, ask to be lead. Give each exchange the respect that it deserves. Each moment a treasure. Each step with intention.

Ease into this New Year softly and be the eternal beginner. A fresh starter. A "yes" person. I want to thank you all for following me, for listening to me and joining me on my journey as I witness you sharing yours. You all helped me to be a New York Times best-selling author, you made my sold-out tour a success. I loved meeting you and sharing intention cards with you, working out beside you, and hearing your struggles and joys. May you have what you desire and more of what you truly need in 2014. I look forward to sharing many moments with you as I embark on the known and the unknown. The visible and the invisible. Watch out for my new video series on Net-A-Porter: The Yoga Studio with Mandy Ingber. My new blog on The Daily Love and my new Yogalosophy App to accompany the 28-Day Mind Body Makeover book will both be coming in 2014. Join me in person this Summer at the Omega Institute for a Loving Your Body Intentionally weekend in upstate New York. There will be more, and we will find these hidden treasures day by day.

Let's start fresh! 


Monday, December 23, 2013

Don't Be Afraid of the Dark

We have reached that point in the year where we live in the most darkness. Many of us have been trained to see the dark as bad. The good guys wear white and the bad guys wear black. We actually need both the darkness and the light to be in balance. I am currently directing my love internally. My heart has been feeling an absence of love, and I am being called to turn love towards myself, as well as to take a look at my old beliefs and conditioning related to love and loving.

It has come to my attention that my truest desire is to feel a sense of belonging. I am reminded that the moments I have sensed my belonging the most have been when I am giving to a classroom of people. I used to say that teaching has taught me everything I know about loving, for I feel love because of what I am able to give. This is an indicator to me that I want to find places where my giving is received. Where I am able to give and appreciate.

There is a phrase: "let it begin with me", which reminds me that if I am wanting to feel loved, not only must I supply myself with the love that I am longing for, but that I can be the source of love. I have a feeling that this very act, becoming the source of love, could quite possibly deliver me the sense of belonging that I so deeply crave.

Meanwhile, the only place that I can turn is inward, toward the dark, and sit in the uncertainty. This is where I am able to sit with the softer and more deeply vulnerable aspects of my nature, and learn how to give myself that gentle attention. That constant and nurturing acceptance. And so I say to you, don't be afraid of the dark, for it is there where all the mystery, magic, and faith lie. Dormant and waiting. For you.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Think Positively

My personal default state is concerned and worried. Perhaps it's genetics, history, or experience, but I am the half-empty type by nature. It takes extreme faith and contrary action to look at my life in the positive. I have experimented with this for over three decades, toying with changing the lens of perspective that I gaze through.

"Keep your thoughts positive because your thoughts become your words, your words become your behavior, your behavior becomes your habits, your habits become your values, your values become your destiny."
~ Gandhi

What I think and say have a direct effect upon what I do. Once established, it can be challenging to be mindful enough to break these habits. We may take the above quote in reverse. In consideration of your destiny, and I am assuming that mine is to be happy, loved, and loving, what would you have to put first in order to have this? What might you have to set aside?

For me, I must assume the best of people. Assume that I am loved and that others are doing the best they can; in fact for me. They are helping me, as I am committed to helping them. I must reinforce this on a daily basis in my actions. If I can say correct things, reminding myself and you, and those with whom I come in contact with that these are my true values, then my mind will clear and the negativity will be lifted. I will see with new eyes, and indeed, my world will have changed.

The holiday season can be a challenge for me. I can look around to all of those with large lives, families, pets, and I can compare myself. Just today, I was feeling forgotten. My mind began to make up stories about being unloved, unwanted, and alone… So I must catch myself in these moments and replace my negative self-talk with positivity.

This is how I do it:
Thank you for this awesome day. For a beautiful morning and space to sleep in. This body that is aging well, and for love. I have a lot of love that surrounds me all the time. Help me to see the love that is surrounding me all the time.

Now you try it!

Merry Merry

Monday, December 9, 2013

Generous You!

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is error, truth;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

The prayer of St. Francis is one of my favorites, for it is a reminder to take the focus off of everyone else and put it back on myself. When I feel grasping or at a loss, I tend to magnify what I don't have or what someone hasn't done for me. When I flip that around and come from a place of responsibility, I remember the saying "Let it begin with me." Instead of my being the reactor to what someone else is doing, I place myself in the driver's seat by setting the tone myself. Why don't I give that which I wish to receive, rather than wait for the handout or place the expectation on the other person.

Become the bigger person. Take the high road. There is so much joy in giving... Giving the benefit of the doubt, giving to the cause. When I become the giver, I receive great joy from another's joy. I remember an epiphany I once had while teaching: I love my students for what I am able to give them.

The opportunity to be the giver is a great honor. When I am reminded of this fact, I start to look for opportunities to bring to the table what I have been trying to get, and suddenly, my world gets bigger. When I stop focusing on what I'm going to "get" out of the situation, and reverse the flow, the universe begins to funnel that abundance through me, for the source is unlimited.

Make your job today an opening of the heart and aligning with the greatest source of abundance: the creator/trix itself. When you do this, you will find that you will have everything to give, for you will be the receiver of all abundance. All you have to do is give it away. 


Monday, December 2, 2013

Expansion: Your Mind, Not Your Waistline

This time of year calls for an expansion. Since the holiday season has begun, I have expanded my waistline a bit, for I have allowed my appetites to roam. This is a natural rhythm of the celebratory nature of the holidays, and so is the anxiety that it provokes. It got me thinking about how I can appease my mind and satisfy my cravings without the calorie intake.

I have always been a bit of the outsider during the holidays. Thanksgiving was not my family holiday due to the lifestyle change that my parents made when I was about eight years old. We became macrobiotic vegans, and there was no such thing as Tofurkey back then. I began to spend that holiday with other families, but did not consume with the largesse that I saw all around me.

My Jewish genetics put me on the sidelines at Christmas immediately. I remember being invited to my friend, Elizabeth Hanning's house, watching in awe at the explosion of tinsel, red and green wrapping, and the magic of the day of present opening. Since then I have explored midnight mass, and witnessed my fair share of nativity scenes. Still, no matter how included I am...I feel like an instant outsider at Christmas.

Hanukkah just didn't have that satisfying feeling. Stretched out over eight days and ensconced in meaning, my family celebrated, but my father was the rebel son of Orthodox Jews and somehow we were not a part of the festival of lights quite in the way that we could have been had my father adopted a more religious view. My mother was born in a displaced person's camp post-Holocost. She longed for the colorful array of gifts, not the limitation of blue and white, and there could never be a tree.

New Year's Eve became my solace. I decided that we could have our own day—a New Year's Day celebration! We would have the same opportunity. It would be non-denominational and practical. Since it was after Hanukkah and Christmas, we could hit the post-holiday sales, supplement the gifts we hadn't gotten, and have the holidays last longer. New Year's Eve became a staying-in holiday, and we would open new gifts for the New Year. Genius! My brother was not thrilled that he would have to wait an extra week or two for his gifts, but I thrived in the anticipation. This changed New Year's Eve for me. The last day of the year was a cozy night in, removing me from the late night partying that usually accompanies this night.

So, you see, for me the holidays have always been unique. Even my birthday, which comes on the heels of it all, gets overshadowed. People are done celebrating, slightly depressed that the holidays are over, and ready for football and awards season. I have learned to start my year slow. I ease into the New Year with that one extra holiday.

I know how it feels to be "special", "unique", "on the outside"...but I have learned to love that just as much. To remember that it's just another day, and to enjoy all of the different cultures and celebrations and rituals that surround me. I let myself be lifted and expanded by the differences. And satisfy my cravings for belonging by being true to me.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Abundant Gratitude

Yes. That word alone speaks to the abundance that is surrounding you all the time. As you look around to this marvelous world and say "yes", you will find that you are given constant love and blessings. The Universe gifts you with a new chance each day. In any moment you choose, you can start fresh and you can remake your life. It's all a matter of saying "YES!" Yes to this abundant world, that includes birth and death, richness of experience, the greatest heights of passion, the balance of serenity, the tragedy of war. We are in this world and all is okay AS IS. What if all you needed to change was your own view.

It takes small adjustments to make big changes. A shift in perspective opens a whole new world to you. I realize and have experienced those moments that are difficult to embrace with a wholehearted yes. In that case, a yes to the NO!

Here is my gratitude list for this week of "Thanks giving":

1.  Grateful you are connecting with me by reading this list.
2.  Grateful to be able to take deep breaths.
3.  Grateful that I have not needed glasses!
4.  Grateful that I am able to feel compassion for my brother who still struggles.
5.  Grateful that I don't have to go back and relive my 20's!
6.  Grateful for and organic food delivery service: Farmbox L.A.
7.  Grateful that my mother is still alive.
8.  Grateful that I still have memories of my father, although he is gone.
9.  Grateful for curly hair. And the occasional blow dry.
10. Grateful that I enjoy sweating.
11. Grateful for the ocean.
12. Grateful for yoga!
13. Grateful for coffee.
14. Grateful to be amongst the human race. And to be very fallible and human in it.
15. Grateful for helpers and angels along the way.
16. Grateful for flexibility (internally and externally).
17. Grateful for Paul Simon and Cat Stevens.
18. Grateful for love.
19. Grateful for change.
20. Grateful that I always get another chance. There is hope.

Have a great, full week.

Easy does it on the pumpkin pie.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Holding On/Letting Go

If you are anything like me, you are dancing with the balance of opposites. How do we really know when to fight for something, to hang on and stick it out, to claim it and own it, OR to release and let go, shed the old skin, let something die so that we may begin anew?

We have just experienced that polarity with the Scorpio Full Moon (which occurred yesterday, Sunday). The things that are no longer serving us must be released. Even that which we have built and claimed as our own becomes outdated and must be shelved for the better. The Scorpio Sun energy is possesive, obsessed, and intense. Yet it's true lesson is in transcendence and allowing things to die in order to become new. Release is a most powerful expression, and is true liberation.

I can think of several times when I willingly let go in my life. I had been working for others for so long, and it occurred to me that it was no longer correct. After much prayer and meditation, and a pros and cons list, I realized that the only thing to do would be to let go of my job of 16 years. I had no idea what would come of this, but I never looked back and I have never done better. Of course, there have been numerous times when I had to have something torn away from me, or worse, when I have held on when it was only hurting me, reminding me of that saying: "Let go, or be dragged." I held on so tight and fought for what I thought was mine, to no avail... Pain and remorse followed.

The flip side of this Scorpio Sun is the Taurus Moon. This represents ownership, being the boss, and being comfortable. This is also the ultimate of nurturing moons, providing sensual pleasures and a bounty of possessions. It has the sense of entitlement and "having-ness". In a way, we should have all of our needs met. It is often easier to accomplish things when we have our comforts—we needn't always fight so hard.

I found this beautiful saying online about letting go versus holding on: "Let go of your worries. Hold on to this moment." Ah. This felt so good to read. Letting go of my worries. Letting go of my old ways of over-thinking it, taking polls about my options, and referencing the past. Hold on to this moment. My feet on the ground, my steady constant breath, the gratitude I have for this day. Somehow, when I take this to a broad philosophical place, I find some peace.

Life is unfolding in so many ways that are unimaginable, and much better than I ever could have dreamed. I can be sure to know that I can let go of the illusion that I am in control at all, accept my current circumstance, and know that no matter what I decide, the Universe is on either side of any decision I make. Since I cannot make a wrong move, I can let go of my worries, and hang on to this moment, which is all I ever had in the first place.

Monday, November 11, 2013


When I was a child, my focus and intensity of emotion felt like it was just "too much". I remember being told that my tears, fears, and angers were "over reactions".  I have not really changed that much in terms of what I feel internally. What I have learned over the decades is that when I take that emotional energy and intensity, and direct it into a tangible project, a fitness regime, or a program, I can use it as fuel to forward myself.

I can often feel an internal pressure building up when I am at a party or when I am not putting myself to good use with a purpose. The beauty of self-observation is that I can turn myself in a new direction, but I must stay awake to my own feelings as they rise.

I always used to mention in my old Spinning classes that the intensity and the feeling that you are "too much" out there, when properly channeled, can be used to reshape and sculpt your body and drive you towards any goal. Just make sure you point that energy in the right direction. That intensity is perfect for a fitness class, whereas if pointed in a different direction it could be destructive. I know from experience. The very same energy that I used to use to take myself down, when turned around, has brought me to the greatest health and heights.

Here is a great example of this: Several years ago, I found out that Elvis Presley and I had similar numerology and astrology. I thought that was pretty funny, mostly because I could totally relate to Elvis' seeming extremism. I have become convinced that if Elvis had found yoga instead of prescription drugs, that he would be alive today, very thin, and would be able to wrap both of his legs behind his head.

Just remember, whatever you have going on that evokes extreme feeling, that energy can be used like the one-pointed focus of a laser. Stay aware and use your powers for good. Waste no energy on anyone who has "done you wrong", but consume it and use it as fuel for your own transformation.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Alchemy: Turn Lead Into Gold

The process of alchemy, or simply put: changing something toxic into something valuable, has been a part of my personal journey. In homeopathic medicine, the cause of the disease can also be the antidote. I view my upbringing in this light. My conflicted relationship to my father was peppered with all sorts of practice in this area. This included meditation, self-exploration, and yoga. When I was a child, a part of me resented that yoga and meditation took my father away from me. His journey into self-discovery left him ignoring me and my brother, and left us scrounging for ways to get his attention. One of the only ways he seemed to notice and pay attention to me was when I mimicked what he did and assumed the yogic positions.

Although my journey into yoga began this way, there was also a curiosity; the desire to learn this skill, and take this path of self-observation and detachment. It sure didn't seem like dad was detached. It seemed as though he was able to unwind himself right out of his pretzel contortionist position with both legs wrapped around his head and yell at me for something as innocuous as drawing too loudly with my markers. Wasn't he missing the point? These exchanges often left me feeling empty and alone. As if I could do nothing correctly and could never be enough.

This foundation for my relationships became the very fuel that I have used to achieve and accomplish my goals. Initially, the desire to be self-sufficient, so that I would no longer "need" my father's or anyone else's approval or support, sent me on a path that lead to lack of vulnerability. In turn, this created a loneliness that would only be salved by that ability to detach and look inward.

Back to the meditation and yoga that my father was immersed in (to the point of ignoring me.) I was now following in his footsteps and giving to myself what he never gave, and what nobody else really could give to me. Over the years, there have been several turning points and incidents which could be viewed as unfortunate, however, within each of these experiences there was fuel. There was the opportunity to take that very same energy, hold it, and let it burn until something pure appeared. In essence, I have found that my ability to take any incident and transform it into something valuable and beautiful far outweighs any storybook fantasy I may have had.

It takes hard work. Sitting in the process of purification, without shying away from the unbearable feeling of transformation, and sticking with it long enough until one day: Poof!... It gives every single moment—"positive" or "negative"—true value. The ability to turn lead into gold. Knowing the True Self. Namaste.

Monday, October 28, 2013


Most of us would love to change from being a caterpillar into being a butterfly. The journey from the dense creepy little bug (but let's not forget the awesome book by Eric Carle: The Very Hungry Caterpillar...maybe not so creepy up close in technicolor.) The journey from one to the next requires a total metamorphosis. The caterpillar must shed it's skin five times before the journey inward. I am sure that I have shed my skin multiple times. (This reminds me of my itching attacks, when I have literally become so incredibly uncomfortable in my own skin that my skin issues have caused me to examine and re-examine my self-care habits and what I must refine.) Eventually, the caterpillar enters the chrysalis stage when it becomes more of a nebulous mass. A pupa...this is the most private. I certainly know what it feels like to be in that stage. I call it being under construction. It's not the sexiest place to be. It doesn't look like much from the outside; it requires going inward and letting go of the structure of the former self, and it's done privately. The chrysalis phase is when all the magic happens. When the final skin is shed, the chrysalis is so soft, but hardens very quickly and protects this transformation. This magical period of time brings with it the alchemy that cause the caterpillar to become the butterfly.

I remember myself in this phase. The life span of a butterfly is 28 days, so the process is much quicker than my human form. I felt that I was in the chrysalis stage for a decade. During that period of time, it really looked as if nothing was happening. The final time I shed my skin and got very soft at that stage was after a physical assault. This attack softened me and created a vulnerability that brought me deeply inward. The shell around me hardened, I was no longer inspired to do what I had been doing for 10 years. I had been an actor. That role was already a skin that had shed if anyone was paying attention. There was, however, much more I needed to shed: my self-critical nature, my yo-yoing diet (alternatively binge eating and then starving my body), the belief system that I was "not enough" or that I had to earn love. I needed to be unsheathed of these uncomfortable costumes. And soon, I no longer knew who I was. I was "under construction".

When I emerged, I had found the voices of self-love from within, the need to help others and the commitment that it took to practice my self-loving and helping others on a daily basis. This was the gift I brought with me, and began to share with my students...and now with all of you.

It's no wonder that my Yogalosophy logo is a butterfly.

This very delicate and light way of being emerged from going deep and accepting the transformation. What appears light is just the bubbles rising to the surface....Yes. Yes. Yes.

A tip of the hat to treating the dark with light.
Happy Halloween

Monday, October 21, 2013

11 Favorite Things

Here's a short list of some of my favorite things. After this weekend of intensity due to the Eclipse, I thought I'd lighten it up and give you my hit list! Here goes:
I love a cup of tea in the morning. Just plug this lovely in and you are set.
Being a curly girl, I love a good natural hair product. 
For the home. Yummy scents.

4. Himalayan Pink Salt:
For cooking, and even in a sauna!

5. Vitamix:
The best blender of all time. 
Moisturize with it, cook with it, oil pulling...this is a staple.

7. Epsom Salts:
Add baking soda, and detox in your own bath tub.
Sleep Remedy really works. Choose from Youthful Skin to Relief.
These sweatshirt dresses are the best and travel well. 
My brother's dear friend and artisan scentualist. Check out her products. LOVE.
This book by Don Miguel Ruiz is a life-changer.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

The Mind-Body Balance

I just returned from the rejuvenating INSPIRATO ACCESS Wellness Retreat in Cabo hosted by myself and my friend, Keri Glassman, and wanted to remind everyone how important breathing & stretching are to your overall health, no matter how physically fit (or not) you are. The body and the mind get connected through the breath. When we hold our poses and breathe, we begin to access places in our body where old emotional baggage has been stored. We begin to dislodge all sorts of pent up stress, which reduces hormonal imbalances and as a result, we even release excess weight. Many of us think that by pushing ourselves harder, we will reap the benefits and results that we are looking for. If "more" is no longer working, let me suggest that your body may just fall into place quite naturally as you change your brain chemistry and your mind.

Here are a couple of tips and tricks to get a healthier body and happier mind:

Begin or end your day with these 3 stretches. Hold each pose for 30 seconds minimum, and up to 2 minutes each.

1) Pigeon
Draw the sole of the left foot to the groin area or inner thigh of the right leg. Lean on the outside of the left hip, and sweep your right leg behind you. The hips should be facing squarely to the floor. The left knee is out slightly to the left of the left shoulder, and the foot is coming toward the right shoulder. Fold forward and breathe for 30 seconds to 2 minutes. When you have completed, walk the hands back up, lean to the side of the bent leg, and sweep the straight leg forward. Shake out the legs in front of you, then switch sides.

2) Forward Bend
With both legs extended in front of you, move the fleshy part of the butt away to the sides. Ground your sit bones to the floor. On the inhale, extend the arms up and reach for the sky, and on the exhale, reach the chest to the tops of the feet and fold down. If you can reach the feet, use the leverage to draw your body down. Breathe here for 2 minutes, or 10 breaths.

3) Happy Baby
Lie down on your back. Open your knees on either side of your ribcage, with the soles of your feet facing the ceiling. Grab the outside edges of the feet. Use your hands to pull down, so the knees are open and bent. From here, start to bring more of your lower back to the floor by arching your back. Breathe here for 5 to 10 breaths. Try to hold this for 2 minutes.

A tip that Keri Glassman shared from her Nutritious Life mantra is a belief that we both share: Take 8 minutes to yourself each day and just breathe in and out of your nose. 8 seconds in, 8 seconds out. This is the beginning of literally changing the grey matter of your brain. Keri shared with us that studies have shown that if you set aside 28 minutes per day of an 8 count inhale and exhale for 7 weeks, that your brain literally changes. Begin with 8 minutes a day and build. You will notice a shift in all areas of your life, including weight loss (if that is your goal). More importantly, your happiness levels will increase and you will have more joy in your life on a moment to moment basis.

Find balance in your life by working this easy, 10 minute wake-up routine. Watch your mind and body fall right into place. Start or end your day with these poses and breathing technique to establish a healthier, more life-embracing mindset.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Life Is A Mirror

Have you ever noticed that, the way you see your external world changes depending upon how you feel internally? The very same event can happen on one day when your perspective is positive and can be seen as a gift, but the same scenario at another time can feel like doomsday.

I'd like to take this a step further and say that the outside literally changes when we change our insides. What you see and encounter outside of yourself is a direct reflection of your internal world, and as you shift and change internally, your outer landscape literally morphs. I have a tendency to see the glass as half full. It may be my genetics, my conditioning, or my history. It may be my body chemistry or my nature. The first matter to address is my perception. Can I view my circumstances in a more positive light? Could my current challenge actually be of benefit to me? Whatever it is, when life has pushed me to the wall, and I have bumped up against intense and increasing dissatisfaction, I hit a critical mass, and soon have nowhere left to go but up. I am pushed to  make a decision to see things in a more positive light. I choose the life that I have as perfect, and I start being nicer to myself. I slow down and stop trying to force the outside to be different, but begin to change my own attitude. Soon enough, I feel an internal shift, and then....the outside follows suit. My relationships seem to change. The view and scenery begin to become more harmonious and my personal struggles ease up. Miraculously.

Life is a mirror of our inner experience. Our relations with others directly reflect our relationship with the Self. If you are experiencing conflict with another, first try seeing this trouble as a gift. Remind yourself that the "other" is not the issue, and turn inward to come to terms with your own inner conflict. If the "other" is critical, where are you critical of yourself? If the "other" doesn't hear you, where are you abandoning yourself?

Here are some ways to begin to shift internally rather than place the responsibility outside of yourself:
  • Take 10 minutes to say out loud to the universe what you are afraid of. Then sit for 10 minutes in silence, listening and opening up to the answer.
  • Write down 5 things you love about yourself and that you are doing well.
  • Write down 3 ways you can make changes in yourself to find a solution.
  • Be open to change, and listen.
  • When communicating with another, especially in a tough situation, try to repeat back to the person what they just said, mirroring them to make sure you have clarity.
Remember that life is a mirror and gift so that you may see yourself as you really are.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Beauty Juice and My Balanced Life

Here's My last installation for my guest post on Chalkboard...It's My SHort List! 
 WRAPPING UP a cozy, yet exciting September, a month that’s been filled with yoga-centric juice cleansing to prepare us for a new season full of vitality (and void of any of the colds and flus that often catch up to us in early October!) Juice cleansing is the perfect way to keep balanced through the year, especially through a change in season: mild detoxification gets your system strong and clear before those holiday seasons that loom right around the corner.
We’re giving away one  Yogalosophy 3-Day Cleanse by Pressed Juicery to a lucky Chalkboard reader! The limited edition cleanse is available for only five more days and features a copy of my new book Yogalosophy, full of the kind of healthy secrets that keep so many celeb bodies in tip-top shape. Win our giveaway or order the cleanse for yourself and a friend, then read my notes about life in the the studio. All the details are below…
    Thursday! At 10 a.m. I am usually getting a cup of tea, or finishing a post-workout shower, getting ready to meet my first client.
    read Jan Spiller's Astrology For the Soul, Angel Cards and apply my Sidda Flower Essences: Heart
    I’m always on the move. Usual suspects include Kate Beckinsale, Jennifer Aniston and Stan Deland, my boyfriend. 
    My Book! Yogalosophy®: 28 Days to the Ultimate Mind-Body Makeover and the Pressed Juicery cleanse offered with it this month! They are making an app to accompany the book! So excited. I have been touring and teaching classes on the road. So fun.
    Kind Bar. Coconut water. Avocado with pink salt. Cashews. Cherries. Dates. Green juice!
    Thievery Corporation, Robyn Thicke, The Verve, Led Zeppelin, Hendrix , Jay Z and Zero 7.
    My Moleskin journal.
    MacBook Air, QuickBooks, my Moleskin datebook, white board, and my assistant Jenni (she’s not an item, right?).
    Mastery of Love by Don Miguel Ruiz, Astrology of the Soul by Jan Spiller, The Life You Were Born To Live by Dan Millman. I also love any book by Henry Miller. My boyfriend is always bringing a new spiritual book, so I await my assignments.
    Social media.
    On a walk by the beach. Outdoors! I live in Santa Monica, after all.
    Five-star hotels when I travel! I always order an expensive pot of coffee or tea while wearing the cushy bathrobe.
  • Here's how to win our 3-day Juice Cleanse with Mandy: comment below, then hashtag#yogalosophy and #pressedjuicery in a social media post of your choice between now and September 30th. We'll be announcing the winner in the comments of Mandy's last Chalkboard post this Monday! 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Balance Is Beautiful

Beauty is a state of being and living from a balanced heart. The natural balance of giving and receiving is the dance of relationship that I strive for in my daily life. Too much giving and I become depleted. Too much receptivity and complacency sets in. When we enter the Fall Equinox and find the balance of light and dark/ masculine and feminine, we find time to weed out the excess and nourish ourselves. The relationship to our body is as important as any relationship. This is why I am offering a limited
Yogalosophy Cleanse with Chalkboard. This short cleanse comes with three days of beautifying and detoxifying juiciness and a FREE book. 

Yogalosophy/Pressed Juicery-Chalkboard Cleanse shoot.

While trying to find balance in our daily lives, we make time for self care, relationships, work and service. In yoga, the balance poses physicalize the dynamic energy of stillness. The illusion is that there is no movement, but the tinier stabilizing muscles are in constant flux. With steady, one pointed focus, breathing and correct attitude, we can empty ourselves enough to appear still. Equanimity comes from non reactivity. This is what is required. Try, this month to balance yourself by taking the contrary action. Open up and dare to stand in what is less comfortable. But never let them see you sweat! See below for One Arm Balance directions, and a playlist of duets.
One Arm Balance by Michael Larsen
Begin in Plank Pose. Bring your feet together, and place your right palm directly below your face. Press your palm into the mat and rock your weight onto the right arm and outside of the right foot. Lift the underside of the waist as you rebound off of the mat. Align your body in a straight line, heels, hips and shoulders. Gaze upwards and breath. Modifications: Place right knee on the mat to make it easier. Raise your left leg up for more of a challenge. Repeat on side two.

Beauty Detox: Juice plus Twists.
Enjoy this selection of duets! 
  1. Two of Us by Aimee Mann & Michael Penn
  2. Cecilia by Simon and Garfunkle
  3. I've Got You, Babe by Sonny & Cher
  4. Give It to Me by Timbaland (featuring Nelly Furtado & Justin Timberlake
  5. Don't Give Up by Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush
  6. Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me by Elton John & George Michael
  7. Ain't No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrel
  8. Sara by Daryl Hall & John Oates

Monday, September 16, 2013

The Healing Power of Work

Have you ever heard the saying :"when I got busy, I got better"? I don't mean to be a buzz kill; I am a big advocate of work being fun. Unlike many,  I have never had a 9-5 desk job, nor do I believe I would be able to rise to that task, should it present itself. My life has handed me a series of chapters. There have been multiple times in my life where all would shift and change, and I would be forced reinvent myself. My journey  has offered me both projects that require 15 hour days for months on end that finally complete and 15 years of daily consistent classes that required my daily presence. Today I have found a balance and live a combination of these two extremes. I have learned through experience that having a free floating, open ended schedule does not leave me feeling free, but lost and unanchored. Daily commitments and tasks that I once shunned as dull and boring, have become the foundational cornerstones for my exciting life and for my enduring passions.

With the ups and downs of a highly emotional heart, I find that I need consistency to keep me grounded. I now find great joy and satisfaction in committing myself to a daily work schedule. Once my book was published and I hit the home runs of great promotion and  my satisfying book tour, I allowed myself some emptiness. Today, as I reconnect with my purpose and get my footing, work is where I find containment. It keeps me on the track.

Back to my daily schedule of clients. Back to my own yoga practice and mindful diet. Back to setting  aside time to self care with meditation, writing, cooking, grocery shopping, errands, tasks and time to create. Recommit to my responsibility towards others with daily connection to social media, weekly blogging and monthly news. These commitments are as much for me as they are for those I feel responsible toward. At some point, in my late 20's, I realized that for me to truly have freedom and flourish, I need to feel connected and be responsible to others on a daily basis. This is why yoga teaches us to show up for a daily practice. It is through this daily commitment that we hold the space for new levels of evolution to emerge. I do not wake up daily and feel compelled to practice, but I have set aside the resistant thoughts that keep me unbalanced and simply do the routine as I would shower or brush my teeth. It is no longer a question of what I prefer. I show up, as is and do my daily work.

As I show up to my daily work, I find that there is a subtle and deep healing that rises up from within me. "Chop wood, carry water" eventually elevates me to the highest freedom which is an experience of responsibility for my own life. Enjoy your work today.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Yogalosophy Cleanse Diary

 I teamed up with Pressed Juicery to give you an opportunity to join me on a 3 day reboot. I always reset my diet in the Fall and Spring, so here are some guidelines. Click the above link for my book and cleanse! See the below from my guest editing gig on The Chalkboard Mag Have a great week!  

CLEAN SLATE – MY CLEANSING MOTIVATION:It’s great to give your system a break and to recalibrate by simplifying your diet. I reboot my diet twice a year, once in the Spring and once in the Fall. With the season change during the milder weather, it’s very natural to shift gears with a short cleanse. With a short juice fast, or simply by eliminating sugar with more of a focus on fruits and vegetables, I help my body rejuvenate and bring more consciousness to my diet. I love a Fall cleanse, because after all of the celebration and enjoyment and expansiveness of Summer, it allows me to move forward into the end of the year with more clarity and intention towards my goals.
FINDING TIME – MAKING DETOXIFICATION A PRIORITY: I like to set a start date to get myself motivated. I give myself a clear intention, set aside some time and space. Once I’ve set my dates, I try not to over-schedule myself and leave plenty of “me” time in the mix. Since my groceries and meal planning are basically taken care of for that time period, I am able to just let go and focus inward. For each cleanse, I keep a daily journal which includes a gratitude list and make plans to move my body for an hour daily. How I plan to start my cleanse is key, but how I come off of the cleanse is just as important.
Set an intention for yourself. Setting intentions are key for a great yoga session and the same is true for a cleanse day. Focus on a specific meditation; “align my heart, mind, body and spirit” or “be easy on myself”. Set an intention that will heighten your experience and encourage you to be extra good to yourself.
Take a nature walk. Nothing is more nurturing than getting out in nature. Since you won’t be going out for dinner or going grocery shopping, you’ll have a little extra time on your hands. Get outside and appreciate the elements of nature.
Take a morning meditation. 20 minutes of sitting with mindful breathing will cleanse your mind of all the thoughts that may be whirring. If you need help, I love the song “Storm of Prayers “ by Shaman’s Dream. It is 11 minutes long so you can play it on a loop in the background.
Schedule a massage. Being touched is another way we can experience our physical bodies. I love to have someone move the energy through my body. It’s a wonderful supportive action. You deserve it. If you dislike massage, schedule a beauty treatment you enjoy.
Hit the sauna. 20 minutes in a sauna will help you sweat it out without having to exert yourself. A traditional sauna is great, but I highly recommend an infrared sauna, which is designed to heat you up internally rather than externally. The benefits and calorie burn during an infrared session are similar to that of a cardio class. And all you have to do is sit and sweat!
Write about your experience. Make a short list of what you did well, and what you are grateful for. It’s amazing what writing down a list of things you’re grateful for – no matter how simple – will do to expand your attitude.
Remember that transitioning out of a cleanse is most important. In preparation, I avoid processed and animal foods for 3-5 days prior to my start date, and when I’m post-cleanse, I begin with fresh fruits and then add vegetable soups and vegetables gradually over the next 2-3 days. Who knows, your palate may be more sensitive – sometimes the simplest foods taste like heaven after a few days of detoxifying.
Enjoy your cleanse experience! You owe it to yourself.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Yoga Month: Fall Reset Cleanse

September is Yoga Month. I am excited to participate several yoga related events! The virtual online conference: Yoga Is. The Yoga Gives Back exclusive charity event. Please click here to come. My partnership with @Inspirato as we travel to Los Cabos together for an exclusive event! Fall is the 
perfect time to recommit to our practice and diet. Join me all September as I guest host the 
Chalkboard newsletter, and be a part of my limited partnership with Pressed Juicery to sign up 
 rest. All you need to do is to get out of your own way. The main thing we want to "detox" is self-critical thinking, which can be very damaging and cultivates a perfectionism that doesn't allow us to reach for our dreams. Your view colors your thoughts, which create your world.
for a Yogalosophy juice cleanse. After the Summer months, it's a good idea to reset the system with cleansing self-care. Your body is working 24/7 to eliminate what it is not using and to process the
Tree Pose

  • Reframe your thinking. If you feel that your hips are wide, begin to say, "I am curvy and feminine."
  • Commit to an action plan for self-care. Create a short-term goal.
  • Replace one old habit with a healthier new one. Eliminate soda and add a green juice. Simple.
  • Break a sweat. Your skin is your body's primary detoxification organ. So sweat it out!
  • Move! Hot yoga, or cardio will help you to hit that heat threshold.
  • Go Green. Greens purify your blood and reduce inflammation. The darker the green, the better. A green cold-pressed juice will go down easy when it's refrigerated. A salad a day will fill you the right way.
  • SAD? Breathe and allow yourself to cry. Breath is the bridge from the mind to the body through the heart and is the key to your emotions. Breathe into your heart and know you are safe.
  • DEPRESSED? Laugh out loud. On purpose. Fake laughter will become real once you begin.
  • ANGRY? Go ahead and hit a pillow. We'll wait for you.

Let go of the tendency to hold it together and be perfect. Show up, as is, and trust that whatever needs releasing is falling away.