resistance? who, me?

resistance? who, me?

Ever have one of those weeks? Over the past several days I’ve been noticing that sh*t has been getting stirred up, like really over the top stirred up. And triggers have been coming at me left, right and centre.

I know I have the tools –  I have been starting my day with meditation, intention setting, being open to help. I’ve been going for walks by the river. I’ve been consciously breathing.

But I still felt stuck.

Last night after a particularly trying day battling with technology, I sat myself down and decided it was time to get real. I asked myself – “Why do I feel like I am in this loop of frustration, constriction and…resistance?”

Resistance. As soon as that word came into my awareness, I knew that was it.

The stories in my mind, the excuses, the blame, the projection, the isolation, the separation – underneath all of this was resistance.

In that moment I immediately softened. I could feel my body relax as if I had just shed a suit of armour. The ego creates resistance to keep us safe. Or rather, to make it appear we are safe. To avoid the uncomfortableness of intimacy, vulnerability, surrender and being real.

So what did I do? I took a deep breath and told my resistance – I SEE YOU. WHAT DO YOU NEED? And I listened. I listened to the part of me that was afraid, the part that feels not enough, the part that feels judged, the part that feel unloved.

And then I asked if I was ready to expand around the contraction.

YES!

So I breathed and offered myself the opportunity to expand. Towards vulnerability. Towards surrender. Towards evolution. Towards my infinite self.

And today? I feel more ease. The resistance is still there, but less somehow. I feel more compassionate and loving towards myself. And today, that feels huge.

Does this story resonate with you? Is resistance showing up in your life right now? What does it look like? How does it feel in your body? What is it saying?

And most importantly, how can you honour this part of yourself. Let’s start the conversation – please reach out and let me know.

How Yoga Can Improve Your Relationships

How Yoga Can Improve Your Relationships

As some of you know, I am in Melaque, Mexico leading a yoga teacher training and we just hit the 1/3 mark. In many ways the students have successfully moved through the most challenging part of the course – the initial getting used to the long days (13.5 hours!), experiencing and absorbing new material at a rapid pace, cultivating an increasing sense of curiosity and wonder about the science of Yoga and possibly most importantly, nurturing relationship within and with each other.
Relationships are inherently challenging, and rarely easy. They take work, time, strength, commitment, love, and so much more. In fact, relationships can quite possibly be the hardest thing you could ever attempt.
During the past several days I have been closely observing the nuances of relationships and want to share how the practice of Yoga on the mat can help on this journey of partnership – with yourself and others.
Listening: As you move and flow through a sequence, you learn to listen to your body, you learn to listen to the cessations of your mind. You listen to yourself, and calm the externalities that often matter little to your true connection with this world. The next time someone engages you in conversation, pause and really deeply listen to them – and yes, this means no phone around.
Focus. As your practice of Yoga progresses, you’ll find yourself deeply focusing on some of the more important things in life. What are they? Only you can know that for yourself – we give away our power when we let someone else decide. Increasing your capacity to focus will help you be considerate and mindful in every action of your life, especially towards those you are in relationship with.
Strength. Your mat will show you strengths beyond your greatest imagination. Asana teaches you that only after weeks, months of practice you grow STRONG. This involves conversations with yourself, even pep-talks that build inner strength to do the hard things relationships require of you. A strong belief in the long term benefits of the work.
Meditation. Moods are contagious. If you show up calm, clear, and full of only love and positivity, I can guarantee that will flow into you and those you are connected to. Ever tried eye-gazing with your partner? Pure. Magic.
Open. The vulnerability of our practice can be overwhelming sometimes. Frequently hip opening poses cause tears. Returning again and again to this open space will give you the confidence to return again and again to opening yourself up to your loved ones. Positive relationships require this opening, this softness, this vulnerability, and you’ll need strength to remain open when the natural instinct is to withdraw. Don’t retreat.
I have so often experienced how the benefits on the mat flow so effortlessly into my life and my relationships. I’m curious, how has your practice inspired how you live your life? How has your relationship to yourself and to others changed since you started practicing Yoga? Hit reply to this email and tell me more.
love & pranams,
carla

A Call To Prayer

A Call To Prayer

Today I would like less than 3 minutes of your time. 2:18 minutes to be exact. I want you take a deep breath in and big sigh out. Relax wherever you are and click on the image below. Press play, close your eyes and listen. Listen through your ears, all your senses and through every pore in your skin…
[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zb2O-UJHAr0[/embedyt]

“A Call to Prayer” by Estas Tonne
Here and now before earth and sky we stand.
We feel the blessing of your infinite love in our blood. In our bones. In our breath. In our hearts.
We open our eyes to see beyond what we have seen before. We open our ears to hear what we could not hear before.
Beyond repetition. Beyond the beyond. We feel a new story emerging beyond ourselves and rippling into our lucid body. 

As waves of love remind us of who we really are. Dissolve us into what we have always meant to be. And the layers between us and who we are meant to be, fade away. And suddenly we realize we are all we could dream we could be. 
To see without eyes. To walk without feet. To fly without wings.
This is my prayer for you.

What was present for you when you received this prayer? I’d be honoured if you’d comment below and share your experience with me.
love & pranams,
carla

A Moment on Silence

A Moment on Silence

“Silence is not silent. Silence speaks. It speaks most eloquently. Silence is not still. Silence leads. It leads most perfectly.” ~ Sri Chinmoy
This is the beginning to an inward journey. This leads you to listen more strongly to that inner vision that sings so powerfully.
This leads you to you.
How I am Honoring Indigenous Sisters and Brothers

How I am Honoring Indigenous Sisters and Brothers

Today is National Indigenous People’s Day. As a white settler of European descent living with incredible gratitude in the beautiful traditional territory of the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation, I am making the following commitments:

  • to better educate myself about the history, the legacy, and the generations of damage done by colonization and systemic racism to Indigenous peoples in this country
  • to become more aware of and acknowledge my settler privilege in Canada and how this continues to affect Indigenous people in both large and small ways
  • to be an ally and to wholeheartedly listen
  • to follow the advice of National Chief Perry Bellegarde that every Canadian should “create space” for Indigenous Canadians by “opening their hearts, their minds and their spirits
  • to use my platform as a teacher to promote healing, respect and connection
  • to educate my children so they can do better than my generation
  • to cultivate a greater number of meaningful, trusting and respectful relationships
  • to regularly donate to charities and organizations that help Indigenous communities in Canada

Dr. Robert Joseph says “At the heart of reconciliation is love.” I couldn’t agree more. If authentic and meaningful reconciliation is important to you, and I very much hope that it is, what will you commit to today? If you are looking for some inspiration – check out this incredible list. I’d love to hear from you.
love & pranams,
carla
Note: The image above is a Bentwood Box carved by Coast Salish artist Luke Marston. The TRC (Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada) Bentwood Box is a lasting tribute to all Indian residential school survivors. It is located at the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba.