When it comes to our bodies, we as women tend to place a great deal of pressure on ourselves to achieve certain results. We deprive ourselves and push ourselves in order to whittle down, tighten up, drop dress sizes, and increase our level of attractiveness. We exalt uber-thin (sometimes, dangerously thin) bodies through images of “thinspiration.” We put these images out on social media and tell the world, “This is what I’m striving for.”
I am swinging back and forth on the ceiling of the rock wall—fear pulling me away from and hope pushing me toward my next hold. I am trying to ignore my arm’s thoughts that they are too tired and let myself believe I can grab the next hold. It’s so far—and I’ve failed so many times before.
As yoginis, we benefit from a community of heart-centered peers who help us to grow toward wholeness. Social media offers the unique opportunity to connect beyond our inner circles to like-minded individuals who inspire us with their grace and grit.
Looking for some encouragement?
Look no further than these six beautiful yoginis, who each embody the spirit of presence in their amazing Instagram accounts:
It’s that time of year again, when everyone starts talking about all the changes they want to make come January 1. Talk of “resolutions” is everywhere—on social media, during TV commercials, and standing around the water cooler. Then it gets us thinking about all we want to accomplish in the coming year, too, so we start making promises to ourselves that will be really hard to keep. That’s where it gets tricky: though the numbers vary a bit, experts believe that only eight percent of people are able to keep their New Year’s resolutions. Ouch!
So much is written about yoga these days. People describe how it helped them through a crisis, healed an injury, made them stronger. Many are inspired to become teachers. Doctors write about yoga’s health benefits and teachers write about its philosophy, anatomical mechanics, or energetics. I am one more fan, student, and teacher, and I want to add my say.
Life is the living art of balance. Balance is a beautiful concept, rooted in the exquisite imagery of Yin and Yang. For most of us, the attempt at balance is more like a circus act of hither and thither, with multiple moving parts flying about our worlds in an unpredictable and mysterious way. As we all strive for our perfectly expressed version of “just the right amount,” it’s important to remember a few essential things to the practice of balance.
A guest post from Jenniferlyn (JL) Chiemingo of The Travel Yogi.
Oh sweet bikini, I love you so much. You are now faded and sand-worn and it’s time to retire you. I don’t want to let you go because you hold so many memories; memories of great beaches, experiences, and even crazy close-up animal encounters. I have grown and changed while wearing you. I have laughed and cried while wearing you. These experiences reside in my heart, but I still associate them with you.
Has the passion for your yoga practice faded? Is your motivation to hit the mat at an all-time low? Can’t seem to make it to your regular classes anymore, and your home practice has lost its luster?
This happens to every yoga practitioner at some point. Though a regular yoga routine is comforting and familiar, if you don’t change things up from time to time, eventually that routine will turn into a rut.
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The cold winter months are a good time to delve within to decide where you want to invest our energy, what you want to hold onto, and what you want to let go. This is always a very exciting time for me because although every day is a chance for a new beginning, I love the energy around this time of year. Everyone is open to the possibility of change and the boundless opportunity found there. To keep the momentum going, it is important to stay connected to your goals, your inspiration, and your belief in yourself.