Hello! I am a yoga teacher and yoga therapist in Austin, Texas. I help make yoga teachings relevant to your life today.
What you're about to hear is the opening of my public yoga class where I introduce an idea that I hope you can use on the mat...and OFF the mat... in your everyday life. Then we'll set an intention, and do some guided breathing.
You can listen to this while you're driving, or doing the dishes, or maybe you can take a break...just STOP. Get CENTERED...before moving on with your day.
I have a question for you: do you trust yourself?
I thought I did, until I had a little lesson from a caterpillar nibbling on my foot (which I talk about in this week's podcast :)
So as I begin doing the Work of building trust with myself, I look to Yoga to see what my experience is there, and what the texts have to say.
First, you probably already know that yoga helps you know yourself better. The simple act of moving and breathing in a connected and mindful way begins to shed light on mental habits, energy level fluctuations, emotional blockages, and relationship to body, just to name a few. Triangle pose one day does not feel the same as Triangle pose another. Then you notice things off the mat, like increased blood pressure under certain circumstances, racing pulse after that third cup of coffee, mental agitation after too much screen time, etc.
Here's what happens to Arjuna in Chapter One of the Bhagavad Gita, as translated by Stephen Mitchell:
"As I see my own kinsmen, gathered here, eager to fight, my legs weaken, my mouth dries, my body trembles, my hair stands on end, my skin burns...I am beside myself, my mind reels." -
That looks like a panic attack to me! He's so aware of how his system operates he can name his body's response. So, feeling this way, he puts down his sword in dismay, then begins to listen and reflect.
Building trust with yourself means moving away from danger when your body gives a signal. It means listening to the rhythms of your energy and honoring those limitations. Your body trusts you when you give it what it needs. Doing this again and again is like building muscles for strength--flex, flex, flex your trust muscle!
May you find every opportunity to build self-trust by nourishing, resting, and listening to yourself this week.
"I wonder if the only way that conversion, enlightenment, and transformation can happen is by a kind of divine ambush."
--Richard Rhor, just this
In this week's podcast we move the ego aside, drop the oars, and get back in the flow!
Want to talk/have questions about yoga, teachings, or life through the yoga lens? Grab my newsletter and book a free phone appointment to chat!
These days I'm thinking all about BALANCE, as in that mythical life balance we all seem to strive for, with varying degrees of success. This week's podcast has a little chat about balance and how it evades us when we cling to it. Sometimes to remain balanced, we must actually TILT in one direction. Food for thought, huh?
One of the most important things we can do in seeking balance, is know who/what takes us OUT of balance. Observe yourself throughout your day and notice when you feel off kilter. What are your surroundings? Who did you just communicate with? What did you take in that day? I recorded a BONUS guided meditation this week to help you discover what your triggers might be, and maybe even begin to change their impact on you and your sense of ease. https://www.jessgyoga.com/imbalance-triggers.html
As always, I'd love to hear from you. How do you use this podcast? What would you love to hear? If you are enjoying this podcast, please subscribe, and be sure to leave a review!
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Wherever this week takes you, may you find pleasure in the moments of balance, and lean into the inevitable change that surrounds it.
Planning my mom's 70th birthday party last Friday with my brother and mom's boyfriend made division of labor prettymanageable and enjoyable. But I'd be lying if I didn't say there was still quite a bit of stress getting things going! It was a great opportunity to watch myself experience stress, feel where it lands in my body, and see how it operates on my mind and behavior. There were some tense moments, but deep breathing and keeping perspective helped keep me in the flow and maintain harmony.
In this podcast episode, I ask, "What state are you in?" Do you know you're agitated WHILE you're agitated? The breathing tools I offer are wonderful for keeping you from living in a state of reaction, and living more often in a state of awareness and harmony.
Educating people on how to watch one's response to stress and maintain balance in the workplace is one of my favorite things to do. I'm getting excited to present at Jacobs Engineering and Scott Douglass McConnico events next month! I have had the pleasure of presenting with some pretty savvy companies, such as NOVA Leadership, Renee Trudeau & Associates, and Conscious Capitalism, to name a few.
If you are interested in having me at your company's health and wellness event, please check out my Events page and let's see what will best fit your needs!
This last klesha, or veil, is difficult, even for the wise sages! The fear of dying is the seed of all fear and anxiety, and its inborn characteristic indicates that perhaps we have known death before. Yet here we are, alive and breathing. Why fear what is to come?
I read from BKS Iyengar's Light on the Yoga Sutras.
Raga is the klesha, or veil, of attachment. Sometimes we become attached to an idea, status, or a way of doing things. These attachments take us out of the present moment and into a longing, which causes suffering. Remember, happiness lies within.
As we embark on this journey to clear our minds of kleshas, or veils that obscure true perception, we can practice the art of remembering. AVIDYA, the first Kesha listed in the yoga sutras of Patanjali, is our ignorance, or innocence, of our divine nature. It is like a translucent curtain that obscures the light of the divine within us. It is this ignorance that makes way for the other four obstacles, so this is a big one! When you were a newborn baby, you were so close to this light within—it was not yet obscured by life in the material world. This connection was there in the beginning, it is still there! Remember this innocence as a practice this week. Notice it in the eyes of any baby you meet 💗
What are you paying attention to, or what is occupying your attention, throughout your day? Are you aware of the effects of what comes in through your senses? How about that 24 hour news cycle?
Explore how you’re LINKING in the world these days, and get centered on what nourishes you.
Special thanks to Abi Robins of Conscious Construction podcast for my spiffy new music and mixing lessons, and Amy Costello of Tiny Spark podcast for my voiceover coaching, recording, and producing, as well as Fanny Priest for this podcast image. Taking this podcast to the next level has taken a team, and y’all are the best! 💗🙏
It’s March 1! Here I talk about the first sutra which I like to think of as a nice reminder that it any time you can begin again.
A special thanks to Amy Costello of Tiny Spark podcast for my voice coaching and awesome intro. Also thanks to Abi Robins for composing the music. Feels like March 1 is a good day for a new introduction!
And as always, thanks for listening 🙏
One of my favorite things about having a yoga therapist is having a consistent yoga practice that I can turn to each day. It is there that I get some sweet wisdom and insight when my mind finally settles down enough that I can listen.
The first lock described in Yoga Sutra 1:33 is the happy person. What key do we use to unlock our own inner peace when we meet a happy person? The friendliness key! Seems easy enough. But can you remain friendly when their happiness bumps up against your serenity? Can you be friendly to your body? What about your mind?
In this episode I introduce the concept of locks and keys from Yoga Sutras 1.33. In her book The Power of Yoga, Nischala Joy Devi reminds us the we must remember that we “hold the keys to our own inner peace.”
Sahasrara! The crown chakra means “thousand petaled lotus,” and is our port of entry for Divine consciousness and point of liberation for our Spirit. It is the realm of non-attachment, where we invest in the gift of life, but hold all things loosely.
Chakra 5 is the realm of sound, creativity, and purification. Located in the throat and tops of shoulders, there can be a physical bottleneck of tension blocking emotions, desires, and individuality from being spoken in truth. 5th chakra could also block lies we hear or violence we see from entering the heart. A healthy 5th chakra listens well and speaks the truth with a resonant voice.
The second chakra is all about our ability to let things go. This talk incorporates information, breath, and mantra to help you release what’s holding you back, and let go of what needs to be let go of.
Resilience is the ability to bounce back quickly from an event or negative experience. This episode has some seated movement and breath to help you elicit the sensation and set the intention of resilience.