Archives for September 2013 | Monthly InSpirations by Fiona

InSpire - September 2013

InSpire September 2013

Summer is drawing to an end - cooler mornings and evenings, sun rising later and going to bed earlier, leaves starting to drop, autumn fruit ripening...a new phase unfolds.
How can we Lighten-Up to Autumn and Let Go of this gorgeous summer feeling, maintaining an inner warmth and joy?

Perhaps we can start by Lightening-up our lives? Some insight from Rick Hanson (“Buddha’s Brain”):

“On the path of life, most of us are hauling way too much weight. Too many To Do's, too much stuff, too many entanglements, “shoulds,” worries, guilts, and regrets. All the extra physical and mental stuff you lug around complicates your life, weighs you down, and keeps you stuck. There’s enough weightiness in life as it is without adding more.
Dropping loads enables lightening up, so start to lay your burdens down, and rarely pick up new ones.“

  • Start small by clearing out one closet of things you no longer want or need. Notice the sense of lightness in dropping things you don’t need.
  • Look at your obligations.  Decide what you could stop doing, and let it go, whether others pick it up or not.
  • Consider your relationships. Which ones feel weighty and encumbered?  Could you step back, stop engaging in gossip and negativity, or stop performing roles such as problem-solving, quasi-therapist, dating advisor?
  • Take a look at your mind. What weighs it down? Guilt, anxiety, perfectionistic standards, passivity, doubt, taking yourself too seriously? For a brief period of time – half an hour, half a day – totally drop it. Ride that great wave of relief and lightness and continue dropping those lead weights in your mind.

Overall: if in doubt, throw it out. Play with feeling lighter in your body. As if you are lifted up by invisible helium balloons. Lighter in your step. Your head lighter on your shoulders. Lighter in your heart.”

The above tips are simple suggestions to help us on the way in a concrete physical way, so, what can we do to more consciously support our inner life, warmth and joy? Some insights from Erin Cox (mother and motivator):

“Carpool. Doctor appointments. Deadlines. Clean the house. Gifts to purchase. The to-do list goes on and on....
We can get to the point where we feel empty…as though our life is no longer our own. That’s when we start to lose touch with ourselves...
Enter self-love and self-care. These two things can shift everything, especially our perspective. Love yourself enough to take care of mind, body, and spirit first. It’s not selfish, it’s survival…no - thrival! I know it’s not a word, but life is far too much of a glorious gift to simply survive. When you are taking time for rest, exercise, spirituality, creativity, and all those things that make you YOU, then you can step back in to the whirlwind of daily life coming from a place of centeredness and peace.
Where do you begin? Start by calming the mind. Take time alone, even if it’s early morning before the house wakes. Simply sit and breathe, and repeat mantras that affirm what you need for the day, such as, “I am calm and peaceful,” “I am joyful,” “I am an amazing partner/father/mother,” “I am a huge success,” and “I am effective and under control,” and most importantly, “I am love.”
When you feel the suffocating feeling of stress and being completely overwhelmed, take a break and re-center. Put the kids down for a nap or put them to bed early and have a cup of tea while reading your favorite magazine. Journal. Take a bath. Dream.
Make it a daily priority to live with more joy! Everything else will fall into place.”

What are we observing and practicing on and off our mat this month?
Make some small changes, and each day honour what you have achieved.
Do one lovely thing for yourself each day.
Pranayama: 9 clearing rounds
Mantra: Bija Mantra (see details in July InSpire)