One more before Christmas!

The countdown begins – whether it’s to the end of work before the break, or until the last window is opened in your advent calendar!  I’ll be teaching one more class in 2013, this coming Monday’s Vinyasa Yoga Practice.  I know that many of you will have already begun your journey home or elsewhere for the Holidays, but if you’re in town I would love to share one last session together.

Wherever you’ll be for the Holidays I would like to offer you some classes that you can do in the comfort of wherever you find yourself!
A class I’ve put up on youtube is available here:

And this is a fantastic website that has a variety of classes for different levels (and some short practices if you only have a bit of time).

It’s so easy to get caught up in the rush of the season, last minute shopping, the possible chaos of travel and busy terminals, and fitting in all of the fun activities in our busy social calendar… so remember to take some time each day to close your eyes and connect inward.  Breath. Lengthen your exhalation. Listen to the sounds around you, observe the smells, and drink in other sensations that arise.  Take it all in and let it wash over you.  And then release it all. Keep only what serves you and remember what the essence of the holidays are about: LOVE. PEACE. TOGETHERNESS.

Enjoy this little post – where Charlie Brown helps put it all in perspective!

And a song that will always make me think of my youth and the hours I spent in the gymnastics gym 🙂


The Dove Ads: Good or Bad?

The New Dove Ads: Sketches of Beauty are the latest buzz in cyber space.  If you haven’t seen them take a peak below or through their website here.

Many people, women especially, responded with positivity saying things like it hit close to home, and brought them to tears.  I myself felt this initially as well.  But there has also been some negative reaction as well.
Please take a moment to read this fantastic blog, with some very thoughtfully articulated points. (click on the fantastic blog part!)

So how do you feel now?  
I think they both perspectives have validity.  I try not to take anything as purely one sided.  I think what makes someone beautiful is that they love and accept themselves and their physical body is only one component of that.  It is unfortunate that racial/cultural equality wasn’t shown in the video either… and that the company has also done blatantly sexist videos for their other products (axe).  BUT, I will still support something that gets us thinking about being kinder and more loving to ourselves – even if it isn’t perfect.  After all isn’t that what they’re encouraging us to do?

Advertising is a tricky thing.  Someone’s facebook status said she wouldn’t even look at the video because even if it had a good message in the end it was still an advertisement.  Yes, even though there is no product placement.  But what is my blog?  Isn’t it advertising me?  Isn’t it just a way to share my ideas, beliefs and put a little bit more of ‘me’ into the world?  Some advertisements are creative, thought-provoking, emotionally stirring.  Some you could argue are even art.  But do we discount their validity, their effect, their power because they are advertisements?

While I would be happy to do without “them”, our world is so connected to marketing and advertising that I wonder whether we can exist without them (I mean we can but how could we stop it).  Until the time society is not driven by consumption and therefore steered by marketing campaigns I will gladly support companies that strive to put even a little consciousness into their ads.  Perhaps, just as we take steps to better ourselves, they are also taking baby steps to improve their way of thinking/acting?  (or maybe my rose coloured glasses are just permanently fixed to my face?!)


Feel Good News: March 19

Wow. Talk about Terrific Tuesday!
This is going to be a smorgasbord of things to make you FEEL GOOD, find GRATITUDE, SMILE, LAUGH, and hopefully radiate more HAPPINESS.

Thanks to my wonderful sister in law, it was brought to my attention that tomorrow is actually the first UN International Day of Happiness!  Visit the website and sign the pledge: I will try to create more happiness in the world around me.  Let’s help happiness spread like wildfire (or perhaps like contagious laughter) and share some good feelings, good deeds and good actions in your community.  Use the #happyday hashtag on twitter… and then keep going!  And make every day a happy one for you & those around you!!!

One of my “keys to happiness” is GRATITUDE.  If you find yourself struggling to find the joy in your life, discovering the little things you’re grateful for may help to open that door.  To combat depression and seek happiness this is exactly what Hailey did when she began her 365 Grateful project.  As a photographer she captured images of little things in her day that she loved and was thankful for.  It has subsequently become a book and is in production to become a film!  Visit the website to learn more, and to unleash the “extraordinary power of gratitude”.

From time to time I think we all struggle to find the joy in life.  It’s often due to the stresses of our every day lives.  Pressures and deadlines in our jobs, being overwhelmed by our to do lists and the lack of time to get things done, and the want for more down time (or in my case currently – too much down time).  I find myself fighting the flow of life.  Like a fish trying to swim upstream I waste so much energy trying to be happy.  When in fact, I think that deep down our true nature is one of happiness.  I believe that as children we come into this world with a certain understanding of ourselves and of life.  I believe it is this knowledge that feeds our intuition and instincts.  However our challenge in life is that we experience and are taught things that may veer from this innate truth.  That is why I love and appreciate children so much.  Some of the things they say reveal their understanding and how they see the world.  Watch this video and take a peek at some of the incredible insights of this nine year old:

Can you let go of your head and trust your instincts?  Listen to that voice deep inside and know your truth…

Finally, this is a feel good video that may move you to tears (ok it may just be me and my ‘over active tear ducts’).  Before I moved to England, I had the privilege of working with Special Olympians in rhythmic gymnastics.  It was such an incredible opportunity that filled me with love and helped my heart grow bigger than the grinch’s!!! This video was taken from Dale Lowe’s blog.  Kitchener, Ontario will host the Special Olympics International Tournament over the next few days and this video (taken last year) shows an incredible example of the spirit of sport and what true sportsmanship is!

The motto this year is “Yes I Can”.
You can too.
You can be grateful. You can be happy. You can share your joy and inspire others.  You can do good deeds and help others.  You can trust yourself and know that you are a part of this incredible web of life and the universe.  You can make a difference. You can be the difference.


The man with a turnip for a head…

With a little extra day time hours on my hands, the internet becomes a great abyss (and a great time waster).  But I am thankful for it from time to time when I come across little jems like this: The Man with a Turnip for a Head.  Joseph Gordon-Levitt has a production company called hitRECord.  It features video, image, audio and text from online collaborators – and when you upload something you can share in any profits made.  A pretty cool concept, and a nice way for someone to use his notoriety to promote others!

Take a peek at this wonderful little short narrated by Gary Oldman.

So what’s your turnip?
I think we all have turnips whether they can be seen externally or not.  We have our little hang ups and things we tend to obsess over.  What causes these sensitivities may be a variety of reasons… I now have a knee that doesn’t bend the same.  It’s not a big deal – except if you want to be a dancer or squat a lot of weight (aka live my life).  But I’ve had to accept that it’s who and what I am.  And by integrating my turnip I empower myself to overcome any disadvantages (perceived or actual) it may cause.

If you’re into crossfit there are some videos going around that showcase this.  A man in a wheelchair doing burpees, or a woman who broke her leg doing one-legged burpees!  But there are many more: like this man with brain cancer who won a marathon while pushing his daughter in a stroller! These are examples of people who own their turnip, and don’t let a situation own them… we all have choices to make in how we deal with what happens to us in life.  If we honour the things that make us vulnerable they won’t zap our strength.  And in doing so we then become open to accepting differences in others.  We all want to be accepted and supported.  Treating yourself and others with kindness and grace is how to achieve this.  Some people have no trouble showing compassion to others yet cannot demonstrate the same thinking to themselves.  If you don’t appreciate and love yourself, how can others?

Embrace all that makes you YOU.  It creates a rich tapestry that weaves together your strengths, differences and unique qualities and makes you stronger as a result.

Have you hugged yourself today?

This is a beautiful and touching TEDx talk.  Grab a cup of tea and sit down and be reminded what life is about…

It’s true that helping others is one of the most ‘selfish’ acts …nothing is quite so self-serving as the act of service to another.  What have you done today to aid another?

The crap or cone technique is brilliant.  Our thinking creates our reality.  What do you want to choose to focus on?  What do you want to attract in your life – 31 flavours or more poop?  It may seem silly, it may seem simple.  But in fact if you can master this – letting go of the negative – you will be happier, healthier and way more successful.

One of my favourite daily emails says Thoughts become things…. Choose the good ones!

Flash Back: 1999 Nationals

Here are two routines that a dear friend Mario Lam recently transfered from VHS (ha remember that).  Thank you so much for doing that and sharing these wonderful memories (for those of us from that time when not everything ended up on the internet – well I suppose it does now!).

Here’s my ball routine:

And rope (can you count the miscues… there’s a few mistakes but I suppose these things happen!)

Feel Good News: February 11

This video is pretty incredible.  A 15 year old who’s family friend died of Pancreatic Cancer decided to research and develop a new method for diagnosing cancer for a Science Project.  He developed a paper sensor that could detect pancreatic, ovarian and lung cancer in five minutes for as little as 3 cents…. and he fully admits that at the beginning of his project he didn’t even know he had a pancreas!  

We have so many resources as at our finger tips… How will you use your knowledge, talent and power to make a difference in the world?

Does this seem familiar?

Sometimes I wonder if there are any new ideas… Ok that’s an over simplification. But really, many things in life are theme and variation.  Watch this video for a striking example!

Same four chords. Hits galore.
But do you ever get stuck on putting something out there in the world because it’s already been done?

Recently I’ve been wanting to take this whole blogging thing to another level. Yet, as I receive some of the daily emails from Life Coaches/Motivators/Bloggers-extraordinaire I begin to question: Does the world really need another one?

Listening to that video, I laughed in so many places and was surprised by the number of songs that I enjoyed and would never have linked together like that.  Of course that may be due to my poor musical knowledge, but let’s skim over that shall we!

What sets each song apart, is the same thing that will differentiate what you are doing.  YOU! It’s what you bring to what you are doing.  When you infuse your passion, your heart, your brilliance, your talent, your creativity (perhaps in this example it’s about lyrics versus chords etc), your joy – that’s what resonates with people.

Think of this in another way.  Rainbows.  One is brilliant. Two is… a DOUBLE RAINBOW. Which is way more than doubly awesome!

So go out today, and bring your own version of magic to what’s already been done!  You might just be the next #1 HIT!

Do one thing a day that scares you

Fear is defined as an unpleasant often strong emotion.  We resist unpleasant feelings, and yet these are often the times where much growth, learning and development happen.  Here’s a video of a young boy overcoming his fears to much celebration.  I think we would commend not only his talent but foremost his strength and courage.  We admire it so much in others… so the next time you are fearing an activity perhaps instead of thinking of the unpleasant outcome recognize that you may be inspiring those around you.

Don’t let your fears stand in the way of your dreams.

Kindness will keep the world afloat!

A friend posted this video, and it started my day with a beautiful smile, hope and an intention to share kindness throughout every step of my day.  This video illustrates the boomerang effect of the way our good deeds and actions truly come back to us (often times twofold). How will your kindness come back to you?  Experiment today and encourage others to pay it forward.  It takes less energy and effort to be kind!

Our kindness will keep the world afloat, and if we all work together we can surf on the (huge) ripples our actions create!