Monday, April 29, 2013


Slowing down is not my first course of action. Having grown up in the speedy city of Los Angeles, zipping around in my car to order my cup of coffee, while getting instant messages, I have become accustomed to this fast pace. It seems an entire day can go by without taking any time for contemplation or even simple enjoyment. 

Yoga can even become a fast-paced and effortful practice. Cramming in vinyasas and squeezing in that power yoga class between my power dinner and turning on the power on my computer so I can catch up on the latest news. 

What if today, you could take a moment to slow down? Take one or two tasks off of your list and do less today. Pay attention to the present moment. The gift that is your life in the now. I say this for myself.

Begin right now. Find a seat. Maybe outside. If you are comfortable on the ground, get on the ground. Perhaps the practice of Slow-ga can be taking 5 poses only. Be present in each posture for 5 minutes. When you want to get grounded, look to the ground. Or sit on the ground. And practice floor poses. You will actually feel the energy of the Earth. Breathe deeply in your body today as you hang out in these positions. Each breath, a transition, each transition a moment to stay present. 

This is a super busy week for me, with my book launch (Buy the book!) and so much promotion, I need to slow my roll, take a few moments, and practice presence. After all, I don't want to miss it.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Happy Earth Day

I was at a party this weekend and the topic of "earthing" came up. We happened to be sitting on the ground, picnic-style. (Okay, I admit, I was sitting on an outdoor bean bag...but my feet were on the earth.) The practice of earthing is literally spending 30 minutes sitting and making contact with the earth. As simple as this may sound, it is just as rare.

When we were children, rolling on the grass, tumbling, and forgetting our shoes at a friend's house or at school was almost a weekly occurrence. As adults, our feet rarely touch the earth. This incredible resource and planet that we live on and the energy of Nature can be forgotten under the paved roads and sidewalks of our neighborhoods. Scooting around from Starbucks to Starbucks (only four blocks away), we can lose a sense of the true calming and integrative nature of Nature.

In honor of Earth Day, find ways to earth yourself regularly all this week.

Ways to earth yourself:

  • Walk barefooted on grass for 30 minutes.
  • Have a picnic. Sitting on the earth will ground and nourish you. Feel gravity pulling you to Mother Earth herself.
  • Practice long holds in yoga. Holding a posture for a minute or longer allows your core and your muscles to engage. Settle into your posture and notice all of the subtle changes.
  • Take a nature hike. Observe your senses. The smells, sounds, and feeling of the air, or the pebbles under your feet. See the beauty all around you.
  • Visit a farmer's market and eat fresh foods from nature.

In order to become present, like a child, consider taking 30 minutes a day to observe nature this week.

The seeds have been planted. Now nurture your seedling and watch your tree grow.

Monday, April 15, 2013



The perfectionist in me is never ready. I could always do it better. My fears that others will judge me or not like me is a real buzz kill, and I just can't live by that voice anymore. Having spent much of my life waiting to feel ready, or adding to the final product, I am learning now to simply jump, and think about it later.

I have often heard others say: set a deadline to help you to reach your goals. As much as dates seem arbitrary, one thing I know is, if I have a commitment and say I'm going to fulfill something and I make a promise to another, my dreams and goals become much more real. Commitment forces me to face the feelings that come up along the way and push through them anyway.

Join me now. I just jumped first, and I encourage you to do it too. In fact, I CHALLENGE you. It's time to declare your dreams! Name it, and find someone to be responsible to. Do not be superstitious or covetous of your ideas. Put them out there. Jump in to the world and get into the mix. Believe me when I tell you that this is the most counterintuitive behavior for me. Nothing was ever ready enough or perfect enough for my internal critic. Turns out that waiting doesn't make me ready. My confidence never appears until I take a risk and just put myself out there.

My new book (YES! My baby is 2 weeks premature!) is on the shelves. And guess what? I haven't even seen the finished product. I have had friends, fans and family tell me they received their copy, yet I have not trekked to Barnes and Noble, nor have I received my Amazon pre-order...or my author's copies. Talk about putting myself out there before I have time to prepare!

This is a new me. And hopefully inspires the new you. Let's just get into the mix and play. Please take some time to post and declare your dream here, then share it with another and be responsible to it. You will not regret it.
My book on the Barnes&Noble shelves in Chicago, courtesy of Stacy Levy

Monday, April 8, 2013

Initiation by Fire

Sometimes the best way to learn is to step up and just begin. I was born to a risk-taker and a procrastinator; I have both within me. The perfectionistic planner that wants to be loved by all, or the careless gambler that just does it anyway. I like to feel safe. The simple base of "practice" constructs a place to visit daily. My routine is something that I can count on through the ups and downs of breakups and book deals. More often than not, this "practice" has been taken from me as an initiation.

Last weekend I accidentally sliced the ball of my foot. Not enough to cause permanent damage, but enough to knock me off balance and get me out of my usual routine. Suddenly, nothing to do. No private clients to hobble over to on my crutches. No pictures or demos to send out on the internet. No afternoon walks or yoga classes or sweating at all, in fact. Not even taking my garbage down the stairs, for that matter. Somehow I am initiated into a new phase.

I cannot remember a time in my life when physical change, injury or accident, did not accompany a major shift. A broken arm preceded a broken home (my parents' split). An assault preceded a career change (from actress to instructor). A fire in my home inducted me into my first real relationship. A back injury accompanied losing my job/s workplace. A knee surgery had me incapacitated just before I went public in all the magazines. Today, I sit and wonder what this laceration on my sole (soul) may initiate.

Where this next chapter takes me, I do not know. I sense the change. I sense the action. I feel the fire burning inside of me. Without my practice, I must sit with the fire. No outlet for this burn. Holding the alchemy within me. Sitting. Waiting. Not knowing where this lands me, but allowing the heat to purify me from within. Economy of movement. Internal transformation. The foundation has already been shaken. I am mid-fall. Heading for the flames.

No turning back.


Monday, April 1, 2013

Less Mind, More Heart=Freedom, Rebirth

Freedom from slavery, and rebirth. Springtime themes encourage a deep cleanse: freedom from outdated ideas, beliefs, and habits. In order to have a new vision, a beginner's mind is a must. Feeling stuck in old emotions, physical clutter and mental blocks keep me a slave to outdated behaviors. Finding ways to symbolically break those ties and become reborn can be a gesture to the Universe that says "I'm Ready!"

I am doing the usual Spring cleaning:

Yes. I still have some. 45 years, and I'm still working some of the childhood wounds out. This past week, I allowed myself to relive and release some old long-standing emotional wounds. Thanks to Stuck No More for letting my little heart soar.

Nothing like a little meditation to soothe like a salve upon the scattered thought forms floating around in there. Loved me some Deepak and Oprah to reignite and support me through the past 21 days in a group meditation with all of you.

Each Spring and Fall, I do a clean up. It's not so much that the rest of the year I let it all go, but it is my gesture to pressing the reset button. A 3-day juice fast is my challenge of choice this year and today is my last day. Add one part hot yoga, and sweat it out. And then, of course, clearing my space of anything that is no longer useful.

This is the best time of year to start something new! So after a clearing, get out your vision boards, your intentions, plant the seeds for all the new projects you had in mind for 2013. Now is the time! Ready? Go!

UPDATE SINCE LAST NIGHT: I visited a Hindu temple, and gashed my foot on a  shard of ceramic. Someone advised: Slow down. Less Mind, More Heart. I leave you with that.