- Move. If you’ve been sitting at your desk in front of the computer all day, or if you’re just feeling stuck in a rut, it’s time to get up and get your blood pumping. If you’re in the office and can’t get outside, run in place, jump rope, sprint up and down your office stairs, turn on the Rocky soundtrack and shadowbox to Eye of the Tiger, or dance it out to my girl, Carly Rae Jepson’s ‘Call Me Maybe.’ Studies have shown that just ten minutes of cardiovascular exercise is enough to release feel good endorphins and get oxygenated blood to your brain. Exercise also releases adrenaline, serotonin, and dopamine. These chemicals work together to pack a major feel good punch. Slap a smile on your face, get outside for a brisk walk and soak up some sunlight for a double the endorphin rush.
- Sing. This may be a little trickier if you’re in a cubicle situation, but if you’re willing to face down the crazy stares you’ll get from co-workers when you’re belting out “Walking on Sunshine” you’re in for a pleasant surprise. Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore have shown that the emotions aroused by joyful music have a healthy effect on blood vessel function. Pick an up tempo song, pay attention to the lyrics and sing it like no one is listening. When you’re finished, close your eyes, take a deep breath and sit quietly absorbing the increase in your body’s vibration. Feel the buzzing in your fingertips, the humming of energy in your throat and the crown of your head. *If you don’t have the space to sing out loud, simply take a few minutes to listen actively to the lyrics and melody of a joyful song. You’ll be amazed how great you feel after immersing yourself in positive music.
- Shower. Cold water washes away negative emotional energy and brings you right to where you are in the present moment. Hydrotherapy helps improve circulation, boosts white blood cell activity, dissolves tension, brings more blood flow to your organs, helps your body detox and balances hormones. When you get home from work, turn the shower on luke warm, hop in and allow your body to adjust to the temperature. Bring the water up to cold for one minute. Turn it back to warm for a minute, then repeat with the cold water. As a resident of Southern California, I’ve made it my mission to avoid being cold. I despise being cold. It was not easy to convince me to do this one, but once I started with cold showers, I found that it works. My energy and spirits lifted instantly. It helps to repeat a mantra in your mind: ‘this too shall pass’ or ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’ while the freezing water pours on your skin. Good luck and ‘Wahe Guru!’
What Kundalini Yoga Means to Me
As a former devotee of Power Yoga, I loved the intensity of the physical work. The sweat that poured off my body in class felt like an instant detox. I practiced this type of vinyasa flow yoga for years, however, after sustaining an injury, I found that I was unable to function in my power yoga classes like I used to. I became depressed about my inability to perform my normal yoga practice and stopped going to class altogether.
Without the classes that had been my physical outlet and had provided me with balance, clarity, mental stability and emotional release, I started to get a little crazy. Needless to say, my relationships and friendships suffered and my work took a major dive. My creativity was completely severed at the knees and I found myself crying a lot for no real reason. As a typically sunny, upbeat girl, I didn’t recognize myself anymore. After a few months of going to bed crying and waking up with heavy anxiety, I knew I couldn’t live like this.
Kundalini yoga became a refuge during the most insane time of my life. I began to crave my teacher training weekends at Yoga West almost like a return to the safety and warmth of the womb. I lived for the community, the meditations, the breathing exercises and the balance the kriyas brought to my emotionally fried state.
No question this yoga was very different than any I had previously done. I’m a pretty open minded person, but I must say, at first glance, this yoga looked completely bizarre. First of all, the teachers dress from head to toe in white clothing, wear head wraps or turbans and sometimes play yoga music straight out of the 70‘s. The poses themselves are sequenced in a specific way and are held for up to 3 minutes in order to bring vitality to certain centers of the body. In teacher training, I discovered the layout of Kundalini yoga sets powerfully deliver energy, oxygenated blood and health to deep internal organs and glandular systems. Rather than focusing on building superficial muscular strength as in Power Yoga, Kundalini yoga works internally to rebuild and repair a shot nervous system. Because I felt so great after practicing, I got used to looking strange and got over caring what anyone else thought of me. Over time, this practice soothed my frazzled nerves and brought me the peace of mind I so desperately needed.
I came out of Kundalini yoga class buzzing with energy, bright eyed and happy. That’s all I needed. I was hooked and felt a strong need to share the yoga that brought me this incredibly deep, personal transformation. I began teaching Kundalini Yoga and meditation to beginners, with a strong focus on proper breathing. I realized anyone could benefit from the techniques I’d learned, from working professionals, to athletes, to new moms, to people seeking a better health and a way to cope with stress, anxiety or depression.
I love teaching. The transformations I see in my clients’ lives keep me inspired to continue learning and growing as a teacher. My private sessions are intuitively driven. Using knowledge gained from many years of studying yoga and the body including my own personal experience, I seek to meet a client’s individual needs and provide a safe space for him to dig in and challenge himself to grow. This work is about uprooting long-held, unhealthy habit patterns and developing positive, lasting change so you feel good. Private clients can expect increased body awareness, a deeper connection to breath and spirit, the power to stand in stressful situations, and more energy, clarity and stamina in their everyday lives. We are all born knowing how to breathe perfectly. Simply remembering how to breathe properly can change your life.
I’m so grateful to have found my path and that I continue to meet so many incredible people on this journey. My hope is that you all will find what makes you come alive on your road to happiness and health.
Love you all,