Have you seen the movie Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga? If not, I would recommend it. It is outlandish, over the top and silly. It is also sweet and left me with a big smile on my face. There is a lot of running around in spandex, performance mishaps, and terrible music.
There is also an underlying message of aligning with your values and stepping into vulnerability as a source of power. The story follows two friends who have dreamed of representing Iceland in the Eurovision Song Contest since they were children much to the dismay of their parents who think they are wasting their lives on this embarrassing pursuit. They write songs that keep missing the mark and, are on the hunt for the elusive 'Speorg note' which can only be reached when you sing from the depths of your heart. I will leave the explanation at that as I don't want to spoil it for you!
You know that feeling when things are just right on all levels? You are spending time with people you can be your self with and it feels great? When you get into an activity there is ease and it simply flows like you are tapped into a creative current that enables you to go further than imagined? This is akin to hitting the 'Speorg note'.
I hope that you are laying the foundation for the 'Speorg note' to show up in your life. Making choices that align with your values, spending time with people who fill you up and knowing that your vulnerability is your superpower.
Watch the trailer
Watch the movie
May practice serve you well,
Can you feel a shift? Cooler mornings, dew on the grass, gentler heat from the sun. We have crossed the line into the early Autumn season with the Autumnal equinox earlier this week. Times of transition are both destabilizing and full of potential, creating the perfect opportunity to reflect on the season that is ending and dream ahead to the one that is beginning. I use a combination of yoga, meditation and journaling to explore these liminal spaces, noticing themes, results of decisions made or not made, and envisioning what the next season may hold. This practice anchors me in this time, allowing me to take it all in before rushing onto the next phase.
I feel my role as a yoga teacher is to provide guidance and a framework for you to explore and connect with your lived experience. This can happen through mindfully moving your body, noticing your thoughts, and reflecting through journaling. The practice of reflection, known as Svadyaya in Sanskrit, is a vital part of Yoga practice and is a direct line to deepening your practice beyond the Yoga postures.
In the spirit of offering guidance, I have created the Mindfully Transition into Autumn Yogic Practices Bundle as a gift for you. This bundle includes a restorative yoga practice to help you connect with your body and breath, a short flow practice to prepare your body for seated meditation, guided meditation and a PDF of journaling prompts. Any combination of these practices is suitable for tuning in and reflecting during this late summer season.
The bundle lives at the Nest online, my virtual studio. Please follow these instructions to access it for free.
May practice serve you well,
Like all of you, I have spent many hours, in the past 6 months on Zoom calls for both work and social interaction. In fact, I just ended my first ever telemedicine call with my dog's vet, but that is another story! Last night, I had the pleasure of connecting, on Zoom, with a couple of friends, one who lives down the street and the other who lives on Vancouver Island. We did a short movement practice together, meditated, journaled and chatted about our experiences. One of the women shared that, before joining the call, she was 'very aware of spending time on ANOTHER Zoom call' and mused about the possibility of transmitting and receiving more feeling, actual connection, and not only words. This had me think about the experience I had this past weekend during a live online retreat I attended with Pema Chodron. This retreat was to be taught via the interactive zoom function, but there were so many people registered the organizers realized this wasn't going to work. They switched to a broadcast function which means we could see and hear her, but she couldn't see or hear anyone other than herself. I know that this is an odd position to be in, teaching while looking at yourself on a screen, as this has been my reality since April. She looked and transmitted feelings of being uncomfortable at the beginning of the first session, but once she started talking, that melted away. I was taken aback by the sincere feelings of warmth and connection I felt from her though I knew she couldn't see me and was talking to thousands of people at once. The theme of the retreat was welcoming the unwelcome, and part of the foundational teaching was to regularly practice sending warmth to yourself as a way to increase your capacity to hold difficult feelings. Maybe in the face of being uncomfortable with looking at a digital rendition of herself when she is used to seeing and 'feeling' people she is speaking to, she sent warmth to herself, and this is what I felt? Essentially, consciously sending signals of warmth and acceptance that we would unconsciously send when we are wholly in the same room as someone else. Maybe this is how we can transmit and receive more of the feeling and connection that we need as humans in this new age of seemingly endless Zoom calls.
How have you been navigating this in your life? What strategies have been working for you to feel connected to others when communicating in this way? I'd love to hear about it.
Sarah-Jane loves learning, listening, sharing and doing yoga!