Birthday intentions 

I’m turning 32 today. Another year older means more wrinkles and gray hairs but it also means so many more experiences. I’m the happiest I’ve ever been in my life and a huge part of that is that I’m more connected to myself than I’ve ever been.  I’ve found confidence and peace within myself that I didn’t even know existed. My heart is so full that sometimes I feel like it might burst. I have incredible friends that mean the world to me as well as the support from my family in every thing I do. Not to mention a husband who truly is my best friend in the entire world. He always has my back and pushes me to be the best version of myself every single day. Without him, I don’t know where I would be. 

One thing I’ve learned in the past year is that as much as I can receive love from others, I’m even more capable of giving the same love back, if not more. I can love with my whole heart and not have to hold anything back. 

My intentions for the next year are to do everything with an open mind and a full heart. 

To have more patience and compassion not just with others but myself as well.

To stay grounded and connected to my truth and march to the beat of my own drum without worrying about what others will think of me. 

To remember that we are all on our own journey and doing exactly what it is we are supposed to do, walking our own paths in our lives. Judgements I place on others only take away pieces of my own happiness.

 And at the end of the day, regardless of the highs and the lows, I can always come back to the place deep within my soul and know that everything is going to be okay. 

My favorite quote of all time is by Jack Kerouac: “Be in love with your life, every minute of it.” And that is how I intend to love each day. 

  

Just chill out. 

I’ve made meditation a part of my daily routine for quite a few years now. It’s something that is very important to me and one thing that I try not to sacrifice. Of course, I’m only human and I’ve gone through times in the past where I fell short of my daily meditation goal. At times it’s been days and even months between each one.

 When I went to Florida for my Yoga Medicine training, Tiffany Cruikshank reignited that spark and inspired me to reconnect with my practice. In our training we would have daily meditations that would last 20-30 minutes. The first couple of times we did this I had a really hard time turning it all off and being in the moment. But once I allowed myself to surrender and to just be in the moment, I was able to relax and find stillness and peace. 

I forgot just how much I loved my practice and how incredibly important it is for me to just sit down and shut up for a bit. Other than when I’m sleeping, meditation is the only other time when I can turn off that little voice inside my head. The one with the constant dialogue. The one that never wants to shut up and at times can drive me close to insanity. As I’ve continued with this practice I’ve noticed some amazing side effects:

Mental Clarity

Calmness 

The ability to observe without feeling inclined to react

Greater awareness of my thoughts, actions, responses

The ability to make decisions based on how it will truly make me feel. 

Increased attention span.

Better sleep at night. 

Deeper connection to myself. 

More love and acceptance of myself and others. 

I can’t say enough about just how incredible a regular meditation practice is for your mind, body and soul. 

Here are some steps to establish a practice of your own. Remember, this should be tailored to what works for you. Play around with it and see what you think. 

1. Find a quiet place where you won’t be distracted. This really can be anywhere. Anywhere in the world. I have a room in my house that I’ve dedicated as my space to chill out. I prefer to light candles and sometimes diffuse oils or burn an incense but it really is your preference. 

2. Come into a comfortable posture that you can be still in. This can be seated, lying down or you might even use some yoga props or blankets to prop yourself up. I prefer seated with my legs crossed and my hands resting in my lap. Some people advise against lying down as you might end up falling asleep, but my thoughts are if you are relaxed enough to fall asleep, great. The point of this is to chill out and quiet the mind. If you fall asleep, clearly you needed it. But again, all of this is personal preference. 

3. Set a timer. I advise this especially as you are first getting into the routine of meditating. There are many different smartphone apps you can use. I really like Insight Timer. It’s free and very user friendly. Plus, if you’re a type A personality, you can track your practice. If you’re not interested in an app, simply use the timer function on your phone or just a kitchen timer works great too. If you are using your phone, be sure to switch it over to airplane mode so you don’t get distracted. I would recommend starting at 5 mins and increasing your time from there. Trust me, starting out, 5 mins feels like a long time to be still and quiet! 

4. Relax and Breathe. Once you are set up and you are comfortable, close your eyes. Draw your awareness inward. Start to notice the breath. Observe as it moves through the body. There are many different ways you can meditate. I encourage you to find what resonates with you. I really like to either count my breath or I repeat a mantra. One that is special and that I can connect with. This doesn’t have to be anything super complex. 

Some examples are: 

I breathe in love, I breathe out fear

I am love, I am light

I am strong, I am open

I am enough, I am enough 

Make this your own. That’s the only way you will stick with it. And if you notice that your mind starts to wander (and it will, trust me) draw the focus back to the breath. Every single time. Don’t get frustrated. Just observe the thoughts and allow them to go just as quickly as they come. And start small. This practice takes a lot of dedication and love. If you allow yourself to get upset or frustrated then you’ve lost the point of this. It’s about relaxing the body and stilling the mind. Finding just a nugget of peace in our very busy lives. Recognize how truly fortunate you are to have the opportunity to spend just a few moments in silence for self reflection and self love and appreciation. You might even get a journal and keep track of your practice and the things that come up mentally and emotionally for you. Have fun with this! Explore! 

Just enjoy the journey. Don’t focus so much on the destination. 

Namaste. 

 

The core of

your true self.

let go of all

the pretending

and the becoming

you’ve done just

to belong. Curl up

with your rawness

and come home.

you don’t have to

find yourself;

you just have to

let yourself in.

-d antionette foy

A Race Between My Body and My Mind

Yesterday I competed on a team at the March in Okarche duathlon put on by our local triathlon club, TRIOKC. It consisted of a 5k run, 16-mile bike ride and finished off with another 5k run. I did the runs and my friend, Vanessa, did the cycling. I’ve done this particular race many times before; although it’s been a few years since the last time I competed in it. I’ve done the race enough times that I know the run course by heart. I could practically run it with my eyes closed. Every turn, every mile marker, every tiny little hill (although the course is pretty much flat). I really had no expectations going into the race, I was just looking to have a good time and see how much I could push myself.

Once the race started I began running and immediately my brain decided to run as well. Normally anytime I run I like to listen to hip hop music. Very loud hip-hop music. Its what motivates me to move my body. In a duathlon, you are not allowed to wear headphones; therefore, you have to create your own soundtrack. So, as we begin to run (without Jay Z blaring in my ear) my brain is going full throttle. Like it’s trying to out sprint me. It keeps trying to convince me to quit running. It continues to remind me how painful it is to go hard and that if I would just stop and quit the pain would go away. The harder I push my body, the louder that voice in my head gets telling me to quit.

I begin to realize that this is the part where yoga really starts to happen. Yoga isn’t just getting on a mat and moving our body into different postures. In fact, most of yoga happens off our mats. For me, yoga is about finding a connection to my breath. To focus on that connection while tuning everything else out and finding some peace and freedom from my own mind. To shut off that voice inside my head telling me to quit when I know I am stronger than that. In my classes I always tell my students that they are so much stronger than they will ever give themselves credit for and I realized that I needed to take some of my own advice. I truly believe that our mind will make us quit long before our body ever will. So, I dug deep. I shut that voice up and I pushed. As I came around to the transition area to hand the timing chip off to my teammate I looked down at my Garmin and discovered that I pushed myself hard enough to set a PR (personal record). I couldn’t believe it. But I wasn’t just stoked for my time, I was stoked that I was able to find that place within myself to tune out all the negativity that my mind was throwing at me. To be able to still my mind long enough to push myself as hard as I could without giving up.

Once I was able to find that connection, my second run went a lot smoother. I didn’t have that voice anymore telling me to quit. I just continued to push. Step by step. Breath by breath. It turned out being one of the best races I’ve done and I had an absolute blast. We ended up taking 2nd in the female relay division and 4th overall. It was a lot of fun and I am looking forward to doing many more of these in the future. I realize that I have control over my thoughts. They don’t control me. And it’s a pretty amazing feeling knowing that I can push myself father than my thoughts allow me to go.

My teammate and I before our race.

My teammate and I before our race.

2nd place in the female division!! And 4th overall! I was worn out.

2nd place in the female division!! And 4th overall! I was worn out.

To fail or not to fail

I recently read somewhere that only 8% of people who set New Years Resolutions actually have success. Which means that everyone else is a failure.

Failure. Such an ugly word, right? I used to think so but now I am kind of in love with it.

I remember when I was growing up, failure was something that we were taught to never let happen. We were to always be the best at everything we did. Our parents and teachers always led us to believe that our mission is life was to make good grades, go to college, meet our soul mate, get a great job, have kids, etc. etc. etc. In that order, just like that, with everything being perfect. There is no room for failure anywhere in that plan.

But, life happens. And so does failure. Sometimes more often that not. Life is not always sunshine and roses. That’s the reality of the human condition. And trust me, I have had my fair share of failures in my short 31 years here. I’ll admit, there are few that I am not proud of but, there are some that have truly taught me so much and I have used those experiences to evolve into the person I am today.

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might has well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.” ~ JK Rowling

Failure can be driven by many different circumstances. Far too often we are the ones setting ourselves up for our own failures. We place an extraordinary amount of pressure on ourselves to reach our goals or live a lifestyle that is not in alignment with who we really are.

Once we can be real about the ideas and plans we have for ourselves and how we truly, realistically, want to our lives we can avoid so many of these inevitable failures.

Back to my original point. I am kind of in love with failing. Why? Well, how are we ever to learn anything about ourselves if we never experience it? How are we to know the truth about who we really are if we never allow ourselves to be vulnerable enough to allow failure to happen? Failure can be harsh. It can hurt not just on the surface but that hurt that goes deep into your bones and settles in for an extended stay. It can feel like your heart has been ripped out. It can be gut wrenching, soul sucking, pain. But when we are open to what we can learn from our failures and commit to stay connected to our truth, our failures will begin to minimize in size and occurrence.

So, you’ve failed. What now?

Ask yourself why you failed. Evaluate the situation. Get clear on what happened. Who were you in the situation? Were you fully present giving it your all or were you only half committed? What changes need to be made to prevent you from failing again? Is this something that you are truly ready to commit to? If so, make a new plan, a realistic one, and recommit. Brush the dirt off your knees and make this goal your bitch. Just because we fall doesn’t mean we cant get back up and finish the race. Take what you have learned from your experience and apply it toward your goals.

Make a commit to remain open. You might fail again. And again. And again. That’s the beautiful thing about life. We are not defined by our failures but by the person we become because of them. Never let any experience occur, good or bad, without taking something from it. 

Continue to Grow. Expand. Evolve.

Trust the Process

I am a control freak. There, I said it.

I like things to go my way. When they don’t, I tend to get upset, frustrated, annoyed and angry. I might even shed some tears.

That is why I have deemed 2015 the year I allow myself to work towards letting go and trusting the process.

That’s it. That is my mantra. “Trust the process”. Because everything is a process and without trust in allowing things to be as they should, we tend to exert unnecessary energy in worrying about the outcome and potentially trying to make something be what its not supposed to be.

My husband and I are in the process of finding a new home. We have outgrown our current house and are ready to upgrade and settle down and eventually start our family. Buying a house is downright stressful. There is no hiding that. You think you find the one you want, you put an offer down and out of the clear blue sky something comes up. When buying a house, something ALWAYS comes up. The bank wants more paperwork, the seller is being a pain in the ass, there are issues with the inspection, etc., etc., etc. My personality is such that I want to find a house, close on the house, and move in. Now. I want to find my dream home and get it done. But that’s not how life works. It’s a process and one that takes time.

Patience has never been my strong suit.

Which is why my focus, intention, goal, resolution, whatever you want to call it, is to Trust. Trust the Process. Trust that things will work out exactly as they should and understanding that no matter how much I want to or try to control the situation, that wont change the outcome.

This has been huge in my yoga practice as well. You see all of these incredibly flexible yogis all over Facebook and Instagram who make full splits or some crazy arm balance look like a piece of cake. Seriously, how do they do that?!?!?! I get on my mat and the instant I get into my first warrior 3 I feel like someone has a vice grip on my glutes because my muscles are so tight. Or I get into standing splits and I can barely lift my back foot off the mat. This is where I really have to release control and to find patience in my body. I constantly repeat to myself “You are enough. Your body is beautiful, strong and exactly how it should be.”

The postures are a part of the process of working towards opening the body and embracing where we are at in our bodies. What comes up emotionally is the process of opening our hearts and minds to our truth and finding peace in that. Every day holds a completely different story for me on my mat. But, when I allow myself to show up, be present and trust the process I leave my mat connected to who I really am. I leave everything behind and allow myself to be open and accepting of myself and others.

Yoga is a process.

Life is a process.

Finding our truth is a process.

Everything is a process.

I will remain open.

I will trust the process.

Bring it on 2015!

Good things

Holidazed and Confused

It’s that time of year again and we are in thick of it. Christmas parties, booze, late nights, bad food, exhaustion, probably more booze, too many sweets, no sleep…..you get where I am going where. This is the time of year where we completely drain ourselves. The sad part is, we do this to ourselves willingly. I think it is safe to say that our ability to make good, positive, healthy, sound decisions completely goes out the window the entire month of December. It returns back in January left to pick up the pieces of our worn down, sick, hung-over, over indulged bodies. We treat our physical and mental bodies so horribly through the holidays, its no wonder why we set resolutions at the beginning of the year. But really, during December those New Years resolutions, goals, intentions, whatever you want to call them, only serve as a hall pass to do whatever the heck we want. So, we eat as much holiday candy as we can shove in our mouths, we have that extra glass of wine (every single time), we stay up way past our bed time and we completely give up working out because we have hit all time levels of exhaustion and, well, we will just hit it hard come January, right?

 It doesn’t have to be like this. Not at all. Not even close. We don’t have to drive ourselves into the ground all for the sake of having the best December of our lives. The holidays are a very exciting time of the year and with it come so much stress, pressure, anxiety, social gatherings, and not enough time spent on ourselves. Taking time to just slow down and breathe every now and then could do so much damage control.

Here are some tips to get you through the holidays to have a wonderful time while still keeping yourself at the top of your to do list.

  1. Don’t over commit yourself. Let me say that again: DO NOT OVER COMMIT YOURSELF. Seriously. It is so easy to do but, when it happens, you will instantly regret it. Take a look at your calendar and ask yourself what events, parties, socials, etc. you can omit for your list. What can you leave behind this year? Just because it’s the holidays doesn’t mean you have to attend every single ugly sweater party you get invited to. Filling up your social calendar will only leave you tired, stressed and on the road to exhaustion. Decide what you can give up and stick to it. Trust me-you will feel TONS better.
  2. When you are at social gatherings, SKIP THE ALCOHOL AND SNACKS. This is what really starts to bring us down. Make a commitment to decide beforehand not to drink at the next party you go to and stick to it. We all know that alcohol impairs your ability to make good decisions and is full of empty calories (which is not flattering to your waist line). Speaking of not flattering to your waist line-lets talk about the snacks and unhealthy food that is served at most parties. If you know there is going to be a bunch of nutrient lacking, fat and sugar filled little devils that you can’t keep your hands off of, then eat before you go to the party. Have a salad with some protein to keep you full. One good decision leads to another so start the night off on the right foot!
  3. TAKE A TIMEOUT FOR YOURSELF. This is huge! I can’t stress it enough. Schedule a massage, meditate, take a restorative yoga class, spend an evening at home watching Christmas movies and partaking in an early bedtime. Whatever it is, slow down and spend time focusing on you and a little bit of self-care.
  4. STAY COMMITTED TO AN ACTIVE LIFESTYLE. Spend at least thirty minutes three times a week exercising. Grab some friends and go for a walk or jog, take a group fitness class, hit up a gym, turn some music on and dance. Do what you have to do to move your body. The endorphins that are released during exercising will make you feel incredible and you will be more inclined to make better decisions throughout your day.

It’s really not that hard to take care of yourself during the holidays. You just have to want to do it and make yourself your number one priority. Don’t let the holidays come and go without taking a moment to stop and breath.

 

Yoga for Athletes

yogis war 2

Yoga is very advantageous to all athletes and should be incorporated into everyone’s weekly workout routine. To learn more about all of the great benefits of a consistent yoga practice, see my blog post Why Every Athlete Should do Yoga. The sequence below will help strengthen and stretch your under and over utilized muscles as well as increase your joint and muscular flexibility, mental focus and balance. Spend as much time in each posture taking as many breaks as needed. Its not about forcing your body into each pose.  Ease into the stretch and back off when you start to feel any discomfort or pain.

Cat/Cow Stretches

Stretches: lower spine, hips, back and core

Benefits: opens chest, warms up the spine, relieves lower back pain and sciatica

How to: Start by kneeling on hands and knees. Align shoulders directly over the wrists and hips over the knees. As you inhale, lift your chest and tailbone to the ceiling while lowering your belly to the floor (cow pose). On your exhale, press your palms firmly into the floor as you round your spine drawing your navel in and taking your chin to your chest (cat pose). Repeat this back and forth motion between cat and cow pose as many times you would like and then return to a neutral spine.

Cow pose Cat pose

puppy finalPuppy Stretch

Stretches: spine and shoulders

Benefits: opens chest, strengthens and stretches arms, hips and upper back, relieves symptoms of stress and insomnia

How to: From your hands and knees position, begin to walk your hands towards the front of your mat. Keep your hips stacked over your knees. Drop your forehead to the floor and place a blanket or block underneath for more support. Let your neck relax but keep the arms active by lifting elbows away from the floor. To feel a nice stretch in your spine, press your hands more firmly into the mat stretching through your arms while pulling your hips back toward your heels. Stay for about a minute or so and then walk your hands back towards your legs, lift your chest and rest sitting on your shins.

Forearm Plank

Stretches: Shoulders, hamstrings, calves, arches

Benefits: strengthens arms, legs and core

How to: Start on hands and knees tucking toes and stepping feet to the back of your mat. Lower down to forearms one at a time. Press inner forearms and elbows firmly against the floor. Pull shoulder blades onto the back, plug shoulders into socket, pull your frontal ribs in and keep your neck long. Press your thighs toward the ceiling but resist tailbone toward the floor and press heels towards the back of your mat. Stay as long as you can, resting when you need to. To modify this pose, lower the knees to the mat. Stay for a few breaths and then lower shins onto the mat and rest your hips on your heels.

Forearm plank Modified forearm plank

Standing Forward Fold

Stretches: hamstrings, calves, hips

Benefits: strengthens thighs and knees, calms the mind helping to relieve stress, reduces fatigue, and relieves headaches and insomnia

How to: From standing, as you exhale, bend forward from your hips keeping length in your spine and a soft bend in your knees. If possible, bring your fingertips to the ground or bend your elbows taking your hands to the opposite elbow. You can also use a water bottle, helmet or block to bring the ground a little closer to you. Stay for a minute or so and then bring your hands to your hips and lift your torso returning to a standing position.

Modified FF Standing ff

 

Low Lunge with back knee down

Stretches: Psoas (hip flexor) in back leg, hips

Benefits: Strengthens quads and glutes

How to: From a standing forward fold, step your left foot back as far as it will go and lower the knee to the ground. Keeping the right ankle and knee in line with each other, slide the left knee back enough to where you feel a comfortable stretch in your thigh and groin on that leg. Bring your hands to your right thigh and lift your torso upright. Allow your shoulders to stay relaxed and slowly start to extend your arms overhead. If this feels like too much, bring your hands back to your thigh or take your palms together in front of your heart. Stay here for a few breaths and then slowly release the hands down framing the right foot, tuck back toes under and return to your standing forward fold.

Low lunge Low lunge mod

Half Splits

Stretches: hamstrings, calves, hips, low backHalf Splits

Benefits: Strengthens hamstrings, relieves sciatica

How to: From the low lunge position, place on the ground on either side of the front foot. Begin to shift your hips towards the back heel. Flex the front foot so only the heel of the foot is on the ground. For a deeper stretch, walk hands forward and lift your chest. Modifications to this pose would be to take hands to your hips or blocks. Stay for a few breaths and then slowly switch sides.

Low lunge twist

Stretches: psoas (hip flexor) and hips

Benefits: strengthens quads and glutes, improves digestion and elimination, and relieves sciatica

How to: From the low lunge with left leg forward, place both hands on the ground between left foot. Press right hand into the ground and extend your left arm towards the ceiling opening your chest. You might stay here for a few breaths, then tuck your back toes and lift your knee taking this stretch a little deeper. Keep pressing the ground away with your right hand and draw your shoulder into socket with the right shoulder over the right wrist. Send your left hip back and lift your right thigh up. Breathe here for a few breaths and return to your standing forward fold.

Low lunge twistLow lunge twist full

Boat Pose

Stretches: spine, lower back and hamstrings

Benefits: strengthens core muscles, improves digestions, stimulates kidneys and thyroid, and strengthens lower back muscles

How to: From sitting, place feet and knees together as you bend your knees. Hold the back of your things, lengthen spine and slowly start to lean back without collapsing into your abdomen. Slowly lift your feet a few inches from the floor while engaging your core and lifting your chest. You can start to work towards lifting your shins a little higher taking them parallel to the ground and extend your arms forward. Stay as long as you like and slowly lower feet back to the ground.

Boat tabletop Mod boat

Seated Twist

Stretches: Shoulders, hamstrings, spine and hipsSeated twist

Benefits: massages abdominal organs, relieves backache and hip pain and strengthens spine

How to: From sitting, extend legs in front of you. Start to bend left knee and walk your left foot towards as close to your left sitting bone as possible. Keep right leg engaged and active and flex your right foot, pointing your toes back towards your hips. With an exhalation, rotate to the left and wrap right arm around your right thigh. Press left hand into the floor next to your left hip and lift your torso, keeping spine long. With your inhalations see if you can sit up a little taller and as you exhale, take your twist deeper. Stay for 5-10 breaths and slowly unwind returning to center extending your left leg.

After you’ve completed all of the postures, spend some time lying on your back, quieting your mind and resting your body.

savasana cropped

Fall Into a Reset

Ahhhh, November. I have missed you terribly. Fall is my absolute favorite time of year. The turning of the leaves, cooler temperatures, scarfs and boots, hot teas and lattes, sitting around the fire, cuddling on the couch under a mountain of blankets, it all makes me giddy with excitement just thinking about it. One thing I really look forward to every year is the time change, the end of daylight savings. I think that setting our clocks back and shorter days is nature’s way of forcing us to slow down and take more time to ourselves.

With the holidays right around the corner, my intention this month is to truly slow way down. To spend more time laying on the couch cuddled up with a good book instead of lacing up my running shoes and pounding the pavement, to cook more meals instead of going out and to go to bed earlier and give myself more rest. I intend to say “no” more often than I say “yes” to plans with others. Most importantly, I plan to take care of myself by hitting the pause button and completely resetting.

We are all extremely busy these days. We live in a fast paced society and we are constantly putting pressure on ourselves to do more and more. It seems that our to-do lists are getting longer and our calendars are filing up quickly. However, you will be of no use to anyone if you don’t stop what you are doing and spend some time relaxing your mind and body. If you notice that you feel guilty about taking time for yourself, then you probably need it much more than you realize. You shouldn’t have a single bit of guilt for carving out time to yourself. Your physical and mental health are more important than any errand, workout or social gathering.

Spend time meditating or take a restorative yoga class.

Read a book.

Drink a cup of tea next to the fireplace.

Start a journal.

Take a bubble bath.

Stay in your pajamas all day long watching movies on the couch.

Pour a glass of wine and light a bunch of candles. 

Listen to relaxing music and diffuse essential oils. (I recommend chamomile, lavender or frankincense.)

 DO WHATEVER YOU HAVE TO DO TO SLOW DOWN AND RECHARGE.

 RELAX, RESET, RENEW

Take care of yourself.

 

Dreaming, thinking, wishing and hoping.

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go do that. Because what the world needs is more people who come alive.” ~ Howard Thurman. 

So what is it that makes you come alive? What gets your heart racing with excitement? What are you so passionate about that it keeps you up at night? We all have something that really lights our fire. So, ask yourself. What is it for you?

The past year I have become obsessed with goal setting. It all started last fall when I became an ambassador for lululemon athletica. During a meeting with the staff and other ambassadors, we were asked to list our vision and goals for the next one, five and ten years. We were to write our vision and goals down so they could be posted in the store for everyone to see. I’m almost embarrassed to say it but this gave me anxiety. I mean heart racing, sweaty armpits, stomach-dropping anxiety. Like anyone else I have always had goals and plans for the future, but never once did I take the time to mediate on my life years down the road and solidify and broadcast what those goals were.

I took my sheet with me and stewed on my goals for weeks. I found it hard to write them down and make a commitment that other people were able to see and hold me accountable to. What if I didn’t achieve my goals? What if I fail? What will others think of me if I don’t succeed? But then I realized, who really cares? These are my goals, nobody else’s. They are all about me and although I have a vision for my future, that vision evolves just as much as I do. Looking back at my one-year goals, I was actually able to obtain most of them; which honestly is a pretty dang good feeling. These goals were to pay my house off, attend two yoga workshops, read two books a month and establish a daily meditation practice.

Since then I have read numerous books and follow many blogs on goal setting. This stuff really gets my motor going. I can’t get enough. I could spend hours daydreaming on things that I want to achieve in my lifetime. Some are small goals that I can achieve daily and others I will spend my whole life working towards. That’s the really great thing about goal setting, even though we are able to check things off the list, it’s ever growing. There really is no end as long as we are passionate and motivated to succeed.

Evidence shows that when we write down our goals and share them with others, we are able to hold ourselves more accountable, we can clarify what it is that we want to accomplish and we are able to see and track our progress. This allows us to get closer to kicking the crap out of our goals.

So, now its time to ask yourself, what are your goals? What do you want to accomplish? Goal setting can get a little overwhelming. Here are a few tips for getting started:

  1. Start small and go from there. Allow yourself to set obtainable goals which will continue to feed your fire.
  1. Be realistic with your goals. Don’t set yourself up to fail. Enough said.
  1. Dream big. There are no rights or wrongs when setting your goals. Only you know what you are capable of and the world is your oyster, my friend. Dream as big as your heart desires (but keep in mind #2).
  1. Understand that you might not be able to obtain every single goal you set. Life happens and sometimes things get in the way of what we want to accomplish. Don’t look it as a failure, chalk it up to a life lesson, dust your shoulders off and move on. But, don’t give up on something that your heart truly desires. You know the saying; if at first you don’t succeed, try again. And don’t stop trying until you get what it is you want.
  1. Recognize and accept that although others may have the same goals as you, we are all walking different paths in life. Even though you may have the same goals, the means for obtaining them may be entirely different. Be happy for those who have achieved their goals prior to you and be patient. Your day will come when it’s supposed to.
  1. Share your goals with others. Help each other stay on track and be accountable. Share what has worked for you and want hasn’t. Motivate each other. Share your successes and what you’ve learned along the way. Inspire others and be inspired.
  1. Journal. Journal. Journal. Write down your goals. Meditate on them. Watch them evolve and then journal some more. Keep the ideas flowing.
  1. Finally, have fun. Goal setting is a process of learning about who you are and what you want out of life. Embrace whatever feelings or emotions come up during the process. It’s a journey, but one where the risks are totally worth the rewards. Enjoy, my friends!

I’d love to hear from you and what your goals are! Leave a comment below or email me and share your stories at lmelott@thislandyoga.com. Keep on dreaming!!!!