Thursday, April 26, 2012

Fresh Green Tips!

Today, walking home from sharing Nia with my Thursday crew, I saw this lovely evergreen gracefully blocking my path. The branches were hanging down, dancing in the wind, waving it's new growth in my face. It's bright green tips were a visual representation of all the effort that tree has put in to growing....

"Here it is, World, my fresh, bright green, new growth. All of the work I have been doing is paying off! Ka-Pow~I am growing!!!"

So I wonder, what does my new growth look like?  It isn't bright green, but it's there.  I water, feed, and nourish my body, mind, spirit and soul encouraging constant growth. I won't block your path and force you to see it, but I hope when you look at me you always see my fresh green tips!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Celebrate Me Everyday!

                    Here it is, the week of my birthday. Another journey around the sun begins.

I feel there is a magic surrounding birthdays, an energy that was created to bring each beautiful spirit into the world. Parties, celebrations and well wishes are amazing! There is an extra energy and excitement around me during the week of my birthday, and there always has been! It is a day to celebrate me!

I don't however feel that it is the only day to celebrate me, or show me you love me or buy me a thoughtful gift! To realize this was one of the best birthday gifts ever.

When I have celebrated my birthday in the past, it was such a big deal(I blame it a bit on the zodiac). I needed lots of gifts, attention, cards and words of praise. I felt a huge pressure to have a perfect day on my birthday, after was MY day. I feel like I also passed that pressure along to those around me. Creating a high pressure situation to buy me the perfect gift, in the perfect package, at the perfect restaurant. If you really love me, then you will know how to make it perfect, right? Oh my, I was is not always perfect.

Then 2 years ago, I had a shift in thinking about MY day.  I remember walking around with my loving partner trying to find the perfect place to eat that would really celebrate ME. Should we go spend $200 on dinner, would that help me feel special on MY day? Should we eat somewhere we never have before? That would express a new adventure on MY day.  We walked around for at least an hour trying to get "perfect". It was terrible, dumb and tiring for both of us. What I really wanted to do was go home, slip into my pajamas, cuddle up and order a pizza...which is what we eventually did. (and of course it was great! Pizza with someone you love can never be wrong:)

But on that walk home, I sobbed and cried and felt totally sad and drained. Why did I need this perfect day? Why did I need so much attention on this day? Why did I put so much pressure on a single day? The answer was simple~I need those things all of the time and 1 day wasn't cutting it. I became aware of my need to be loved. I became aware of my need to receive gifts that were thoughtful. I became aware of what I needed!  I realized I needed those things to happen all of the time. I want to feel special, all of the time. I want each day to be a perfect celebration of life, whatever form perfect takes! This realization was my gift that year! And what a liberating gift it was! 

So now, everyday is MY day. I want you to love me everyday. I am special everyday. I accept cards, gifts, and words of praise any time someone wants to give them to me. Why do I need 1 day a year to receive love?  Everyday I am happy to be alive and thriving. I live my life creating a world where love is given and received freely. I use my awareness to listen to what I need, and seek it when I need it, not only on my birthday. And, I treat others the same. I love others as I want to be loved~everyday!

I still love my birthday, I feel there is an energy, a magic, and power surrounding the day I entered the world! But now, instead of the perfect day pressure,  my birthday can be a day of celebration, play, and love. But I do not need this 1 day to be the only day I am celebrated...celebrate me every day!!!!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

I Love my Body!

When I tell my story of how I found Nia, self-healing my injured hip is what I lead with. I had 3 compressed discs in my lower spine, that were pinching the nerve causing chronic pain in my left hip. After the chiropractor told me not to do yoga or any other movement because it would make it worse, my mind (and body) said "wrong~I want to move". So I began my journey of self healing. I moved my body with awareness and intention and eventually....I healed it!

 But the part I don't often share is the part that is a little more personal, a little deeper.  Along with pain, I was also someone who struggled with a poor body image, and had all of my life. It was an all consuming feeling. When I would put on clothes, my 1st thought was "do I look fat?"  When I would walk in front of people, I would wonder " my thighs look fat, are they looking at my stomach?"   It was exhausting to constantly be thinking about how awful I looked.  And when you hate your body, it doesn't feel good. The only thing I felt, was fat. So, when I began my journey of self healing my hip, I also began my journey of loving my body. I often wondered what it would be like if I didn't waste so much time obsessing about how fat I looked or was or felt! I worked out~I ran, did yoga, cardio videos, weights. I would touch each part and say out loud "elbow I love you, hips, I love you". The problem was believing it 100% . I was too caught up in how my body looked, or was "supposed to look", to love how it felt. I would exercise, feel good, my hip was healing, but then I would see a picture of myself and would still think "You look fat."  I began my journey, but wasn't quite getting where I wanted to!

Then, in a search for something new that combined all things I liked to do~dance, exercise, and self heal, I discovered the Nia Technique. Nia is a movement that has 2 tag lines that really got my attention: 1~"Through movement we find Health"
2~"Love your Body. Love your Life."
Ok, the 1st one, check, awesome, I believe in it, I did it. I moved and I healed. But, the 2nd one~Whoa! Love my Body. Love my Life? Really? Ok, I want that!

So I stepped into my Nia journey....

I went to my White Belt Training in January 2010 and learned all about Nia. The awareness of my own body's sensation was empowering. The movement of every single part was liberating. The energy released was intoxicating. I was dancing, working out, sweating, feeling good, but what came in through the side door was love. By focusing on the sensations of my body and learning about the awesomeness of the human body, I found love. I love my body! I am not just saying it, I really love my body. It is strong, supple, complicated, powerful, and can moooove like no other!  Nia has given me this to me. I call it freedom. Freedom from the loop of negativity. Freedom from self judgement. Freedom from pain~physical and mental.  Now when I put on clothes, my question is "how do I feel in these clothes?" Now, I stand in front of people everyday, feeling confident, never worrying about what they think.  Living in my body is all about how I feel, how my body feels, not how it looks. And it feels good!

I can tell you I am a completely different woman than I was when I began Nia and the difference comes from loving my body. Yes I have lost weight, gained muscle, flexibility, and so much more physically, but the biggest change for me is the love. And when you love your body, you can heal your body, mind, and spirit. Love provides freedom. Nia has opened me up to freedom, from the inside. With that freedom, I can change the world!

I teach Nia to share the freedom that comes from living in a body that you love. It is my purpose to create freedom~for myself and for others. I am sharing my thoughts here in order to inspire you to seek freedom and to Love your Body!