Doing some spring cleaning??? Brush off your yoga mat.

Balfon Yoga- Increase self esteem

Getting your Groove Back

Are you new to yoga?  Or do you just need a refresher. Yoga can be challenging for a beginner and a challange to get back too. This article will help ease your transition into or back into the world of yoga.

Find a good space to practice in.  You do not need a whole lot of space to prcatice yoga.  For my personal practice I like to change it up a bit, the sunny front window when my gang has gone off for school is one place I like.  In the spring I love to roll my mat out where my bulbs are blooming in the yard.  The smell of things just popping up is so wonderful.

Purchase a quality sticky mat. You can find them all over the place, I have several. When I started teaching yoga, mats became the go to gift for many that wanted to support my endeavor. I have a whole bunch of fancy ones but I really like my old cat scrached glitter stuck kinda dirty bubble gum pink mat.  I have had it for ever and it is a good friend to me.  When its looking a little loved on I just toss it in the washer on the gentle cycle with a couple of towels pull it out before the the rest of the laundry hits the dryer.

Take breaks to focus on your breathing.

Get a good night’s sleep.

Shut out negativity.

While much of yoga can be intimidating, it’s easier to master than it may seem. I hope these tips will help get you started or restarted on your journey into the world of yoga.

Want to learn more about yoga and other ways to stay fit? Head on over to www.balafon.com for great tips and information.

Guilt free chocolate eating… a Valentines Yoga Meditation…

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If you know me at all you know that I am not about depriving oneself of anything.  I know for some who have embraced a different path however this time of year may be difficult; what with the items in the picture above being presented in abundance.  I offer this suggestion on how to enjoy this treat at this time of year with the knowledge that you are doing a good thing.

 Mindful Eating.

This mindful eating exercise may be especially pleasing to some because it involves chocolate.  If you have food issues there’s no need to fear; this exercise is waistline friendly as we only need one or two pieces of chocolate, or at best three.

In order to complete this exercise you will need one or two squares of chocolate, alternatively a couple of chocolates or a small chocolate bar cut in half.  It’s Valentines weekend so I imagine that you may be able to find some quite easily.

Step one:

Examine the  chocolate be aware of the packaging and the smell that comes through the paper. 

Feel the anticipation; open the bar or box and watch how the wrapper comes away, how it crinkles and crackles; then reveals the chocolate within.  Notice how the chocolate looks, observe the texture, the aroma, any imperfections made in its manufacture.

Break up a square and breathe in the aroma. Look at it carefully, observe the sheen, the decoration on it, the way it has broken off from the bar.  You don’t have to stare at it just look at it for what it is.  How does it feel in your hand, smell it again; the sweetness

Take a bite or place the square in your mouth.  Feel the sensation as your tongue savors the flavor of it. What can you taste?  What is the texture like rolling around in your mouth?  Pay close attention to the changing texture and taste.  Notice how it starts to change from what was once a solid.  Can you focus on all the characteristics until the chocolate has been eaten and all that remains is the lingering aftertaste?  Did you enjoy it? Can you feel the flavor that’s left in your mouth?

Step two-the comparison step

Take the second piece of chocolate but eat it how you normally would.  Which for most of us means to pop it in your mouth give it a couple of chews and then gulp.  Did you experience any difference?  Did it taste the same; worse or better?

Which one was better the first time or the second?

I’m willing to bet all my Valentine chocolate that the first experience was much more pleasurable and satisfying! You may have even been content with just the one taste. All your wants or cravings for chocolate may have been satisfied.

After number two you most likely felt like doing number one over again.  Its ok you can it’s Valentines after all.

Love yourself.

XOXOX Danielle

You have the power…

imagesG7G0RUFIBalfon Yoga- Increase self esteemI was listening to some vintage or classic rap recently while driving.  I know its vintage because my kids love to remind me that anything that I know all the words to is quite dated or as they like to put it Old School.  “The Power” a song by the German music group Snap! From their album World Power released in 1990 started playing.

 Now this song is particularly known for its hook “I’ve got the power!”  Singing along while doing some pretty awesome upper body grooving at a red light.  (It is not wise to do much lower body moving if your driving.)  I started thinking about power and light.  This is what I came up with and I thought I would share.

Everyone has a light bulb inside of them.

You are the Operator of the switch.

Yes, you have the Power.  The wiring is all set up.

So…

What are you going to do?

I think you should…

turn it on

Oh, and if the switch seems to be stuck – check the bulb.  Is your light turned on?

If it’s off, what can you do to turn it back on?

Do you need a new bulb?

Get one.

The Bill is already paid up.

This song and thought process on a chilly February day is quite possibly one of the best Light Turner-On Activities I’ve ever come up with.

If you would like to enjoy the inspiration for this post here is the link.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=z33tH-JdPDg

Namaste, no pun intended..Danielle

Summer Parenting Moments using Family History..

Sharing their lives with each other

Balfon Yoga- Increase self esteem

Its summer time and most young people want to be as far away from learning as possible. However summer with its long rides up to the cottage, sun sets and waiting for fish to bite provides an excellent opportunity for you to hang with your kids and re affirm family values.  As the gang was heading to a family reunion this past weekend.  I started telling the kids about the people they were going to see…and where they came from. (Not the Birds and the Bees but our Family History).
Now there may be parts of your family history that you are not proud of, not every family has empty closets. However your family history is just that… History… It’s done and over… It is History… You can tell an edited version of any family story, and use it as a parenting tool. Perhaps you have some issues in your family that are not so nice…For example Uncle so and so who likes to drink lots of beer and tell jokes that make other people uncomfortable.  “Why does he do that Mom???” ” Well  Son if you take into perspective that Grandma was married at the age of  19 to Granddad who was 40 and a wounded World War Two Veteran it’s no surprise that sometimes things were a bit rocky in their relationship… and Uncle So and So had to step in when his parents were not handling things well.  That’s why Uncle So and So acts the way he does sometimes, and is why Dad does not like to drink.”

Lesson taught, perhaps not quite learned, but it’s out there to be used as a parenting tool as situations present themselves.  As I have mentioned before in previous blogs it works better with my kids when I admit that I have done something wrong or dropped the ball.  The kids know that I am not perfect and nor is anyone else.  But there are better ways to handle difficult situations and sometimes it’s best to know the whole story before you judge a person.   And really what pre teen does not want hear the story of  Great Grand Mother Betty who was married 3 times had 12 kids and was  shipwrecked off of the coast of Newfoundland…She lived to be 98…and had bunions…just like Mom…and that’s why you have to carry that stuff because Moms feet hurt… (Warning if Mom has Great Grandmas feet she may have her extended expiry date…So be ready to have her around for a while!)” Please Mom stop now!!” How about you do you use Family Lore as a teaching tool??? Is History really History??? Let me know.

Danielle

 

www.balafonyoga.com

 

 

 

 

How to be Patient

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Never cut a tree down in the wintertime. Never make a negative decision in the low time. Never make your most important decisions when you are in your worst moods. Wait. Be patient. The storm will pass. The spring will come.Robert H. Schuller

Some days I love advice like this and other days I find myself wishing the microwave would cook my meal faster.  As if waiting 4 minutes for an organic burrito is a long time.  This time of year it seems exceptionally difficult to be patient when the whole world outside is teaching patience but it seems the rest of the world is moving faster and faster, time for some non bendy yoga tips on what you and I can do to make this time of year a little easier by being patient with ourselves and others.

Have patience be your goal for the entire day. Take a day and make a serious effort to take your time and think about everything you do. Live in the moment and be mindful of yourself and your surroundings. Think of your day as a movie where you can hit “pause” at any time. Take regular pauses and at the end of the day think over all the decisions you made.

Slow down. Sometimes we must rush, but we think we need to rush more than we actually do. If you are hitting pause a few times each day, you will likely notice when you are rushing for no reason. When this happens, just stop for a minute and practice some non bendy yoga by taking a few deep breaths.

Think before you speak. This means that you pause and consider what you’re going to say before you say it. If we blurt out the first thought that comes to mind without considering the consequences, we often find ourselves saying stupid or offensive things. Practice this for as long as you can.

I’d love to hear from you … Let me know how being patient works for you.
 

Officer I did Nothing!!!

Are you feeling guilty about stuff that is not yours to feel guilty about??

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Balfon Yoga- Increase self esteem

This past weekend my son had a hockey tournament in another town.  As we were rushing out the door I got a heads up from one of the other  Hockey Moms who had spotted a speed trap and let me know about it.  Sure enough just where I would have pressed a little harder on the gas there it was.

Once I got to the rink I thanked the proactive parent and then immediately felt guilty for not passing the word along.  Another parent could really have benefited from me making a call.  They got a big speeding ticket and lost some points. Both things they can’t afford. But I did not call ( I actually did not have their number…well I did but  looking up that number and everyone else’s number and calling  would have made me late,) So they got a ticket for driving too fast and breaking the law and I felt lousy!!!

For some reason I felt that the speeding ticket that they got was my fault!!!

Have you ever found yourself caught up in the drama of others? Then wound up feeling resentful and drained from all the energy you needlessly used?

I decided it was time to practice some Non BendyYoga and take full responsibility for what I had done. Nothing!!! I had done nothing . Nothing wrong, nothing to feel ashamed about…Nothing!!! It was my job to disconnect from the burden that I had chosen to carry.  

Knowing what we are and are not responsible for in our lives creates a unique type of freedom. Here are some examples were you may be taking on a burden that’s not yours.

You are NOT responsible for colleagues who cause a toxic work environment.

You ARE responsible for coming up with a plan on how you are going to work in it, or find something new. 

You are NOT responsible for your sisters’ divorce or the demise of any relationship.

You ARE responsible for what you do in your own relationships.

You are NOT responsible for your child declining their higher education and as a result ruining their perceived future.

You ARE responsible for your own education and future.

You are NOT responsible for your brother going bankrupt.

You ARE responsible for your own financial situation.

You are NOT responsible for the happiness and joy of others.

You ARE responsible for creating your own happiness.   

Letting go removes many of the energetic and karmic responsibility we choose to carry for others. When we refrain from allowing others to step their place of responsibility and accountability we steal their opportunity for personal growth and spiritual, development.

With the world moving at such a fast pace, and other peoples life situations constantly surrounding us it’s easy to get pulled into the big and little burdens of others, while turning a blind eye on our own struggles.

Know when to stand up and be accountable.  Know to do nothing.

Do you take on the burdens of others?  If so are you able to let go?? Lets Talk…

Danielle Intuitive Life/Yoga Coach

 

“God helps those who help themselves.” Ben Franklin

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Balfon Yoga- Increase self esteem

Crouching on my bed on hands and knees, I cupped my head in clenched hands as I took a few long deep breaths, praying that the pounding in my head would stop.

I felt the softness of the bed, the warmth of my partners still warm spot the smell of toast coming from the kitchen. I listened to the bedlam that accompanies the morning rush as my children and partner get the day started.

Completely aware of the pain in my head but feeling the relief in each inhale and the pain ebb in each exhale, I continued to breathe absorbing all the sounds that when I awoke I could not bear to hear.   Hunched on my bed, I was getting better, I was doing yoga.

The migraine was leaving.

Earlier, that morning I had woken up with a premenstrual migraine.

An older version of me would have been rushing around the house frustrated and angry resentful of all that had to be done to get  the “gang” out the door on time.   Focusing only on the intensity of the pain. This was also my typical behaviour when things didn’t “go my way” in any situation.

This time however, rather than reacting to my pain I used my voice and communicated to my partner what it was that was wrong and what I needed from him.

This experience made me realize just how simple it is to express what it is that I need and why it is ok to ask for help,  a simple request changed me.  In that moment when I asked for help, I was “doing yoga”.

There’s a misconception that yoga is about being bendy and learning how to relax.  Yoga is much more than that, yoga teaches us to be kind and gentle to ourselves.  To bring our attention to our breath and reflect before we act and to ask for help when we are in a  perceived or real negative situation.

Yoga is about asking for help, taking help when it is offered and turning off preconceived notions.

Tomorrow I get up with the gang, and my Sweet Babu can linger…

Can you do it?  Will you ask  for help even when you think you should not because it seems its not the right time??  That the schedule or others are more important? Or can you practice “Yoga”?

 

New Year Same You

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Balfon Yoga- Increase self esteem

In our hearts we know the best thing to do, but fail to do it. New Year’s resolutions are great examples of this.

We make resolutions because we know it would be better for us to lose weight, or get fit, or spend more time with those that matter most to us. The problem is that a resolution is generally easier to break than it is to keep.

This year let’s try something new.   We are going to cast aside the idea that we need improvement, this year we will accept who we are and understand that by doing so we are empowering ourselves to take the path that is best suited for us.

Let’s embrace the idea of self love, and by doing this we will only feed our body and mind with the best. Lets make these our resolutions…
• I will love, laugh and hug everyone more often, even if others think I am crazy.
• I will give up limiting beliefs, relationships and habits, even if doing so leaves me naked and vulnerable and scared.
• I will ask for help, even if doing so makes me feel or look weak or silly.
• I will dig find out more about who I am, even if I don’t like what I find at first I will embrace my true self, even if it’s hard.
• I will speak up and stand up for causes and beliefs that are important to me, even if I offend.
• I will pursue my dreams with passion and daring, even if I have to sacrifice personal safety and comfort.
• I will take risks in business and in life, even if I’m unsure and don’t have all the information.

 

Please join me this year and work on loving who you already are.
Namaste
Danielle

 

 

Gratitude and a Change in Attitude.

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Balfon Yoga- Increase self esteem

It’s American Thanksgiving  and that got me thinking about  gratitude, I came to the realization that it is very easy for me to be grateful for all of the wonderful things in my life that have been going great … But what about those things that are not going so good? How can we expand our gratitude to those wonderful lessons that can teach us so much?

This past weekend I found myself getting angrier and angrier at an individual who had dropped a proverbial hot potato into my lap.  Now this person and I have quite a history of one being on the end of helping and one receiving, in the vast majority of cases I have felt that I am the one coming to the  rescue and I admit after doing so for many years I have grown a rather big chip on my shoulder.  As I was busy dealing with the consequences of some one else’s actions and feeling resentful,..   Fate decided to teach me a lesson…

I had the  Tom Waits song “Come on up to the  House” playing in the car as I drove and the line…“Get down off the cross we could use the wood.”  interrupted my venting session…

I just had to laugh as I realized that perhaps I needed an attitude adjustment.  I had climbed up onto my self created cross and was quite content in seeing myself as a victim.. It was time to look at the situation differently… This person is going  to act the way they always have… And I will most likely initially feel dumped on.

However if I am fortunate I will have many years of these type of situations for if the world is good we will continue on this path  thankful knowing how each one of us is going to act during difficult times. Grateful that this relationship is constant and never changing…

I’d love to hear from you … Have you had a moment or a  situation that made it difficult for you to have gratitude for them?  Or not… What about those?