Posts Tagged ‘practice’

The Grind of Weight Loss

Thinking about what to eat all of the time is a constant grind. Ugh! Many of us want out. If we didn’t have to deal with the food thing life would seemingly be easier. Trying to lose weight makes this matter even worse. It often feels like a small misstep or two can derail the entire process and and all of our hard work is lost.

This perception is both true and false all at the same time. On one hand, if this is our experience we must acknowledge it. It’s not good to pretend that the challenges around food don’t exist. On the other hand, we have many stories we tell ourselves about our bodies, food and weight loss. When our thinking is present centered we simply say, “what’s for lunch?” and when we are stuck in our storyline we say, “I have to eat well for lunch”, or “I need to figure out what to eat that’s healthy, even though I want something else”, or “I can never just eat what I want”.

If this sounds familiar, I humbly suggest finding a practice that allows you to stay more present in your thinking. Whether it’s doing yoga in the morning, finding some calming breaths several times a day, walking your dog after work or all of these things. It is important that we find practices that allow us to not get caught up in stories that ruin our experience. By staying present we see what is right before us with our relationship to food and simply act from that place, rather than the big stories of what has been or what is yet to be.

May we all find presence today,


Is It Your Time?

Everyone wants to change – to transform – to have things different than they are. It’s human nature to desire life to be better. For many of us this includes losing weight. We often attach our happiness with health and physical beauty to this one change of weight loss. Of course this is a bit misguided. There are many things that we can shift to become and feel healthier, happier, and better looking. We can reduce our stress levels, get outside more, get a spa treatment or an updated haircut (not that I know much about this one!) to achieve much of what we are looking for.

Weight loss itself requires some focus because it’s a longish process. Longish as in more than a week. It certainly does not provide instant gratification. It is often a good idea to find at least some of the other things you desire first and not think that losing weight will make all these other things magically appear.

That said, I always ask my clients this one question: Is this your time? If it is – do it! If it is your time for weight loss, the thought of shifting your diet won’t be overwhelming. Most likely because you’ve found your groove in other ways and you have created the space to do the weight loss dance. If it’s not your time, that’s fine too. Knowing this will help you do other things that bring you happiness. Practice yoga, go outside, do whatever is right for you, and watch your life feel just a bit better each day, every week.

Is this your time? Food for thought.

May we open to transformation today.



I thought I would write about beauty this month. Because we are all vein. I’m not judging. I believe it’s part of the human condition to want to look our best. Our weight is often part of this. We are driven to be an ideal weight as part of our desire to be as beautiful as possible. Sure, there are other reasons to lose weight. Most of which revolve around health. But it’s a rare person who doesn’t care what they look like.

Our perception of ourselves is often tied to the scale. The funny thing is, most people aren’t attracted to someone based on their weight alone. So many factors play into attractiveness. Posture, confidence, personality, etc. all matter. But what really seems to make a difference is energy. Or more specifically, the quality of our presence. So many people I’ve worked with have had this realization. They find that after “cleaning up their act” – which involves doing yoga and meditation – cleaning up their diet so it benefits them and no longer suppresses their energy – they feel more attractive. And other people find them more attractive. EVEN IF THEY HAVE LOST LITTLE OR NO WEIGHT!

I’m not arguing that you shouldn’t lose weight. I’m simply pointing out that if you want to be more beautiful, practice will help you. If your goals include being more healthy, losing weight, and being more beautiful they might all require the same actions of practice. Moving and breathing, developing presence, and eating in a way that builds energy. We can actually ditch the scale and allow ourselves to develop our natural beauty instead.

May we all experience our own limitless beauty.



Happy New Year friends! I’m going to make a suggestion this year. Let’s all make a collective new year’s resolution. Not to lose 20 pounds or to do yoga every day. Well not exactly anyway.

We already know all about these types of resolutions. We’ve made them before. What we really need to do is remember them! To clear space in our heads to allow ourselves to act in our true best interest. What does this mean? It will require us to slow down and set our intention each and every day. As we find focus and clarity, it is so much easier to take action that benefits us.

So here’s our new year’s resolution. Every morning let’s wake up, take a few breaths, and say to ourselves, “Today I intend to be peaceful, present, and useful.” This seemingly small practice is the gateway to all other practices. A simple intention to right ourselves at the start of the day to realize our goals.

And who knows? Maybe we will like it so much we’ll do it again during the day!

May we be peaceful, present, and useful today and send our heart’s intention into each moment as we move ahead on our path.

With love,


Personal Peace

OK. Here is the deal when you eat too much in one day.

It doesn’t really matter!

The event that causes the most pain among my clients is eating too much. There is so much guilt and recrimination. It’s horrible. But the truth is – in terms of body composition – it doesn’t matter that much. Of course if we overeat day after day we are not going to love the results. But in the short term, it is pretty insignificant.

Realizing this, in a nutshell, is how I personally found much of my peace. After years of overeating and then hating myself for it, I was free! This simple truth is really what I needed to get deep into my system. One binge – one overstep – even one “bad” vacation didn’t really matter. It’s what I did the next day, week, and month that mattered. I proved this to myself. I’m still proving it by occasionally eating in ways that aren’t a great idea and then finding my balance again.

I believe this is what we all desire. The ability to discriminate between a slip and a major fall down the stairs, so to speak. For many of us these two things can feel the same. But they don’t have to. If we continually practice so that our mind is calm and discriminating we can see reality and can accept our perceived faults more easily. We can change larger patterns that don’t serve us AND accept our normal human deviations.

I know this to be true because I have experienced it. I have also seen hundreds of others experience it as well.

So today – Practice and find yourself closer to this place of personal peace.

May we all realize our true potential,

Om Shanti ~ Om Peace


Here and Now

“Every morning you are born again – all that matters is what you do today.”

Each day we have the opportunity to be present and treat ourselves with the respect and love we deserve. The ways in which we feel we have failed ourselves in the past are not the issue. All we need to do is find ourselves in the present today. It is from here that healing begins.

Even though it seems overwhelming – our task today is simple: Find ourselves in the present. Feel our feet on the ground. Feel our breathe enter and leave our body. When we do this our choices are simpler and more obvious. What to eat becomes easier because it is in service of being more present. Additionally, it is rare that overeating or eating highly processed foods help us stay present.

Of course sometimes we want to leave the present and escape the here and now. But with a little practice we do this as a choice not a reaction. There is a huge difference between “checking out” for a couple of hours to watch a movie and standing in front of the open cabinet eating a box of cookies. As we practice finding our breath and body right now – our choices become more and more beneficial. I have experienced and seen this time and time again.

So let’s do an experiment. Ground yourself into the present 10 times today. Notice how it affects your ability to choose.

May we all find our breath today.


Looking For Love In All The Wrong Places

I recently read a study that looked at the brain’s reaction to food. Long story short, it turns out that parts of our brain can’t tell the difference between food and love. Some of the chemical responses that we have with love and food are the same. It makes so much sense that it goes that deep! We are born – we cry – someone feeds us. It’s kind of hard to argue that that’s not love.

The problem is that food love is so temporary – so fleeting – it lasts only minutes. But like all things we need, we get addicted. So there are a few steps to get ourselves out of this endless cycle.

1) Realizing that wanting love in any form is natural and normal. Our desire for food love exists because we are human.

2) Accepting (having faith) that there are other ways to achieve love besides food. And that these ways can be normal and natural, as well.

3) Doing practices that help us experience other forms of love.

There are many practices that do this, but in yogaland we look towards movement, breath, and meditation to help us experience the love that is inherent and requires no outside catalyst (like food). We all deserve love.

I write this in the spirit of inspiring you to practice. If you need any help figuring out what practices would be most appropriate please find us and we’ll point you in the right direction.

May we all find the love that exists inside today.

With respect and love,


How Can It Be So Simple?

When I propose that in order to become more at peace around food and body image that a simple practice of movement and breath slowly followed by getting organized to eat in a way that leaves you feeling well as the main focus, the general reaction is, “It can’t be that simple!”

I was reading a book by a meditation master recently and it said that we should let the mind do it’s thing without interfering with it much – and I thought to myself “It can’t be that simple!”

Well, it is that simple. In a way. The actions that we need to take to find ourselves in a better place are simple. We tend to make them more complicated because doing this supports the story that we have designed and told ourselves for years. This supports our idea that the way are doing things is the (only) way things can work.

It is when we allow ourselves to see our obvious current way of thinking or acting that we can see what isn’t really working. From here, we can allow simple change to happen.

So let us all take a step back and say to ourselves, “Some of my old ways of doing things are not working out. I think I’ll try a new way today. I’ll move and breathe. I’ll walk through my day calmly with a schedule in hand, and I’ll eat in a way that seems useful.” It’s that simple.

And as we observe the fruit of this practice we may be inspired to do it again tomorrow.

May we all live in simple truth.


Taking Care of Ourselves is a Practice

It’s often really challenging to take care of ourselves. It can seem like the world is set up to keep our attention on everything but self care. Our daily struggles with work, family, money, relationships, commuting, responsibilities, and schedule just don’t seem to help us be on the path towards health and well-being.

There’s a piece of yogic philosophy that has helped me take care of me. It basically says that we create the world around us. This of course does not mean that you personally put Obama back in office, or that it’s your fault that your boss is an @$$%*#&. What it does mean is that every moment we have an opportunity to return to the present; take a breath and see things for what they are. When we do this, something really interesting happens – we see more possibilities. The commute becomes free time to listen to music – the boss becomes almost comical in their insistence on powerpoint – the family can wait 10 minutes while we practice in the morning, and amazingly they all survive.

To find well-being and health we need to practice. And this practice starts with a basic belief that there is always the possibility of being in the present. We can take care of ourselves while life continues to happen. Our stresses and constraints that the world has for us can exist at the same time as we find a moment, breathe, practice, and nurture ourselves.

Once we can do this for ourselves, maybe the congress will too. smile

May we all find time for ourselves.

With respect and gratitude,


But I Like It!

At some point in our weight loss journey it will be become clear that certain foods are probably not the best idea. It will become obvious because they leave us feeling tired, or we can’t stop eating them, or the reality of the nutritional benefits of our snickers bar become too much to take.

At the same time we won’t want to let them go. When we ask ourselves why we often hear, “Because I like it!!!”. But what does that really mean? What are our reasons and thoughts?

Do we like the taste – the way it makes us feel? – The temporary release from suffering it represents? Maybe we like the stop at the store itself to get it? Or maybe we just don’t like the idea of giving things up?

The reality is that it is probably a mix of things that we mean when we say that we like something. And they are all true in some way but we don’t have to attach ourselves to all of these reasons/thoughts. If the time is right to let something go we will be able to hone in on the thought that is most useful to us and see the others for what they are. We will find spaciousness around the tangled web of “I like it” and become aware of all of the little pieces that make up that statement. With this clarity we are are able to choose to give something up – or decide that it’s not the time. Our practice supports this awareness – part of our practice is the knowledge that we change when it is possible to change and when it isn’t possible, we keep finding our practice until it is.

Enjoy your practice,


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