What if I told you, “You are enough?”

The right to be alive. First Chakra. Our connection to Earth and to the Cosmos. Our right to be free.

How are you supported in your right to be? Can you look in the mirror and say, “I am enough?” How does it feel to know that your being alive is enough? I am proposing that for the next 30 days, every time you pass a mirror, look into your own eyes and say , “I am enough.”

~ New First Chakra Quotes ~

“Everyone should have themselves regularly overwhelmed by Nature.” ~ George Harrison

“Look at the sky: that is for you. Look at each person’s face as you pass them on the street: those faces are for you. And the street itself, and the ground under the street, and the ball of fire underneath the ground: all these things are for you.”  ~ Miranda July

“This is the world as it is. This is where you start.”Saul D. Alinsky

“National humiliation is long in gestation and violent in resolution.” – Roger Cohen

“The purpose of life is to be alive.” – Charlotte Kasl, If the Buddha Got Stuck

This is the fight our generation was made for. You know enough. And you can learn. If this happened in the future, there may not have been people around who lived the fight. Holocaust survivors, Vietnam and Iraq war veterans. AIDS activists. People who have seen what happens when ghouls come in and try to destroy government. We will turn their ridiculous plans into puddles as the sun comes out. ~ Matthew Kohn

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” — Mae West

sun through the forest © 5.2015 Holly Troy“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” — Jim Rohn

“The whole point of Jesus’s life was not that we should become exactly like him, but that we should become ourselves in the same way he became himself. Jesus was not the great exception but the great example. – Carl Jung

“The opposite of addiction is not sobriety. The opposite of addiction is connection.” – Johann Harri

Solstice Intention Setting for 2017 (and beyond)

Several years ago I learned an exercise similar to the one I am presenting here based on an Abraham Hicks Teaching. This is my own version of the exercise. I borrowed this post from one of my workshops. The exercise was based on writing and using the energy of the new moon. I’ve revised it for the Winter Solstice – which is, in a way, the New Sun of the year.

IMG_2581Currently, we are at the Winter Solstice, or the longest night of the year. This is a good time to release what we don’t want – what is unconscious and holding us back from moving forward in our lives. Once we have let go and created space within ourselves, we can create a vision and make intentions for how we want to move forward.

For tonight, or, for the next few nights, it is a good time to set intentions. I propose an intention setting exercise this evening. This is a powerful time for growth. During the winter months, the surface of the earth appears to be fallow, but underneath the surface, roots are digging down deep, and seeds and bulbs are waiting for spring to push forth their potential. Right now is a powerful time to plant intentions so that they may grow strong and grounded beneath the surface before emerging in the spring.

You will need several sheets of paper.

Part 1
Choose a topic you’d like to focus on. It could be about money and finances, relationships, love, career, home life, recreation, travel, the environment, creativity, community, education—basically anything that’s on your mind or that you feel needs focus. If you can’t think of a particular topic, that’s ok, because we are going to begin with letting go of what we don’t want. You may just write about all the things you want to let go of in general.

On top of your page write, “I don’t want . . . ” and then just list what you don’t want as quickly as you can. To give you some ideas, there may be things that are happening in your life right now about this particular subject that you just don’t like. (For example: I don’t want to deal with grumpy customers at my job anymore). Write that down. Or, you may have fears about what may come up if you start doing or having what you want. (For example: I don’t want to date any more guys who are afraid of commitment). Write all the don’ts, can’ts, shouldn’ts, won’ts down for the next 10 minutes.

Read over your list of “don’t wants.” You will find that many of the things you don’t want appear to be outside of you. Is there anything that you are doing that might be creating the things you don’t want?

Below the “don’t want” list, or on another sheet of paper, write, “I want to let go of or release . . .” and list behaviors or circumstances that may be blocking you from having more flow in your life. Some of my things on this list might be: procrastination, always allowing my significant other to make our weekend plans, spending more money than I have, not getting enough rest, etc. Write what you want to let go of for the next 10 minutes.

Read over your lists once again. Is there anything else you want to add? Be thorough, but don’t let the energy get stuck. You can do this more than once (it’s a good one to do at the new moons).

Once you are done with your lists, stand up and lift your arms over your head. Inhale. Then, exhaling, gently bending forward while slightly bending your knees allow your upper body to hang, you may even swing back and forth gently. Imagine all the things you don’t want and the things you want to release are flowing from your arms, fingertips, and top of your head and into the earth. Say, “I am letting go now. Thank you Mother Earth, for taking care of this for me.” Now slowly roll the upper body up, one vertebra at a time, knees slightly bent, head comes up last.

Part 2
Look at your “don’t want” and “let go of” lists. On another sheet of paper, take each item on your lists and write the opposite of each phrase, things or circumstances you do want. You may begin the phrases with, “Wouldn’t it be nice if . . .”, “I’d love to . . .”, “I attract people who . . .”, “I’d really like . . . “, “I am surrounded by . . . ” or whatever seems appropriate to you.

The phrases allow you to daydream and envision more of what you would like to bring into your life.

Once you have written all the opposite phrases – you may take the list of what you no longer want and burn it (Solstice is a wonderful time for a fire) or tear it up and throw it away (if a safe fire is not feasible). The list has now been transformed in the physical dimension and represents another version of letting go.

Take your new list and read it out loud to yourself. Imagine inhaling each phrase and allowing the breath to move through your entire body, filling up the space you have just created for yourself.

Part 3
Continuing working with the breath. Inhaling, imagine light and love is flowing through the crown of your head, down your spine, and all the way down to your feet. Exhale, imagine light and love expanding to bathe every cell of your body. Inhaling, let that light and love pour in through the crown of your head and all the way through the souls of your feet. Exhale, that light and love continues to flow outward. Continue this breathing so that you establish a steady flow.

Once that flow is established, imagine it is three years from now. All the things that you want have come to pass, and you are enjoying your life beyond your wildest dreams. You are having a party to celebrate your success. What are you celebrating? What are your surroundings? Who is there? Try to write at least one detail for each of your senses. Do this for 10 minutes (write as quickly as you can).

When the 10 minutes is up, read your vision back to yourself. Imagine that your vision is a powerful seed of potential. Release that seed into the sky. If you’d like, read your vision to the sun and beyond the farthest reaches of the universe. Know that what is best for you is what will grow. You may even add at the end, “This or something better is now coming to me for the good of all. I love you (Universe). Thank you. So it is.”

Don’t Stop Here
IMG_0500Over the next few months as the Sun gets higher in the sky, you may begin to get ideas on how to move forward with your vision, or opportunities may come your way that will move you closer to your dream. Remember to take action once you are shown the way – otherwise your intentions are just daydreams.

Three years is 1095.75 days. Break your Three-Year Success Dream into doable daily steps – they can be the teeniest, tiniest doable steps along your path, or they can be big leaps. Maybe take some small steps to build up your confidence with some hops and pirouettes thrown in. Do it your own way, with your unique style. Do it in a way that is fun and where you are least likely to beat yourself up. Maybe some of those small steps become habit, and once they are established, you reach a turning point.

What can you do, see, be? Continue to wonder what it feels like to do, see, and be something completely new, while having gratitude for where you are now. Who can you call or enlist to help you on the way? Who and/or what can you let go of? What one little step can you do today that will become 1095.75 steps? Can you enjoy the journey and not worry about the destination?

Go even farther with more writing – focus on an intention and everyday come up with 10 ideas toward making it happen. Push the ideas. How can you combine your intentions so that your ideas can get really wild? Let yourself do this for 30 days every day, and then, when 30 days are up, do it for another 30 days. Before you know it, you will be compelled to take action. (I was introduced to this habit by James Altucher. Read more about the habit of 10 Ideas a Day here.)

Start with what you’ve got and where you are. Most importantly, start.

Happy writing and intention setting! I’m looking forward to seeing what you come up with!

If you would like, feel free to share your intentions in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

Namaste.

Holly

What I’m Loving – Oh My Love

Fool for love. Creative process is good. Relaxation is good. Make time for good things.

“Oh My Love” is a song written by John Lennon and Yoko Ono that appeared on Lennon’s Imagine album in 1971. George Harrison contributed guitar on this song and several other songs for the album. (wikipedia)

John: Well I don’t know who made the golden rule that sex and love have to go together because I’ve enjoyed love without sex and sex without love – and quite often they come together (there you go), but quite often they don’t.

Yoko: So what is love then? I really think that love is something to do with relaxation. When You’re guarded with somebody, then you’re not relaxed. And when you’re guarded with somebody, you can’t love that person. Love is when you understand it so well that you relax finally . . . and we have that kind of relaxation between us a lot.

IMG_3761While meditating last night, I felt an opening—a feeling of spaciousness throughout every cell of my body. I realized that the spaciousness of relaxation is where love flows. Though I was alone, I could feel love for my life, for the world. That’s a good feeling! (It seems I haven’t felt open and relaxed in a long while).

After I was done meditating, I saw one of my roommates and asked him if I could give him a hug. He said, “Yes, is everything alright?” I said, “Yes.” And so, we hugged.

Kali Ma (and the Moon)

Astrologers are saying a lot of letting go with this Libra New Moon today – a closing of the lunar eclipse from the end of September.

What was revealed to you that you can let go of now?

“Don’t give a little bit and then take it back . . .”

Make some space to let new things in. Make some space to let Love in. Make some space to let Truth in. Let it in so you can let it out. Simple, but maybe not easy.

Oh, Beautiful Ram Dass. Om Shanti, Om.

Ram Dass - photographer unknown
Ram Dass – photographer unknown

Have some heart!

aspen (c) 2014 Holly TroyWe are moving on to the heart chakra in this session of Writing the Energetic Body. I’ve been really busy this last week – healing from a cycling accident and having changes come up at work. Getting to the heart, for me, is perfect timing right now. The little video is a good reminder to slow down and breathe.

Om shanti.

The prompts I’ve given this time are:

Forgiveness

Write about the color green without mentioning the word green.

Write for fifteen minutes on “I love”, and then fifteen minutes on, “I don’t love.”

Yoga, Work, Love, and Breathing

I was blessed and honored to have a class tonight with not only a fellow Sivananda yoga teacher, but a truly lovely, kind, generous, compassionate human being. I feel the molecules in the air buzzing while at the same time feeling content and grounded.

Om. Sat Chit Ananda.

Sometimes I forget how soothing yoga is. Which brings me to my job. Work has been tense lately, and not just for me, but for my colleagues, too. Though I can’t control what is going on around me, I can check my own response and attitude toward my environment. The good thing about this stress is that it is giving me clarity on things I’d like to be, do, or have. I’ve been making a conscious effort to shift the strain at my job, and I think it is working – not only in terms of being calm, but in being more productive.

Here is what I do:

Rather than thinking bad thoughts about work on my way there, I “send my love before me.” I send loving thoughts ahead of me—I imagine love is like liquid light—flooding my office, getting into the cracks and crevices, the carpet, the computers, the equipment, the toilets—all of it—and I see it surrounding the people there. As my thoughts travel, I find that I love exactly where I am in thon the way home (c) 2014 holly troye moment and in space—my legs pushing my bike pedals, the air moving past me, the trees, the sky. Even if it lasts for 15 minutes in my imagination, my day is already better for it.

I set a timer for every 45 minutes to stop what I am doing to focus on my breath for at least three breaths (no matter how much of an “emergency”other people are experiencing —and believe me—I don’t work in a hospital so nothing is really that much of an emergency).

Review my dreams upon waking – rather than looking at my computer.

Get up early enough to write for at least five minutes every morning after meditating for 5 to 10 minutes. I review what I’ve written at least once a week.

Take at least one small (sometimes super tiny) action everyday that moves me toward changes I’d like to see in my life.

* * * * *

I am posting the article below for inspiration. It is written by Swami Sitaramananda and was posted on the Yoga Farm blog. Here’s the post (see it in full here):

29 Tips to Deal With Stress

Modern Life is full of stress and strains and demands on our system. Stress comes from the inability or difficulty to adapt due to habits, ego, attachments and fears. Stress can also be the result of not having enough Prana (energy) to cope with the demands or pressure. When we are stressed, we develop negative feelings and lose even more Prana. It can snowball into a big problem.

Here are a few tips to unblock energy and turn around the stress drain:

  1. Breathe consciously and rhythmically; inhale to the count of three, exhale to the count of three. This will synchronize your brain waves and your heart rhythm.
  2. Move calmly. Best is to regularly practice yoga postures or asanas which gently move the body, stretch the muscles and turn the mind inward to more awareness. Asanas performed consciously in the right sequence—with proper holding, concentration, breathing and relaxation—release blockages of energy and recharge you with new vitality.
  3. Resist spending too much effort, no matter what you are doing. Effort needs to be balanced with relaxation.
  4. Take time alone to find yourself. Constantly being in a network of relationships is very draining.
  5. Slow down. Be aware not to be trapped in the Maya (illusion) of your challenging situation.
  6. Do one thing at a time. This is the principle of Raja Yoga. Stress can come from too much happening at the same time, so slow down and focus on one thing at a time.
  7. Focus on a positive object such as the sun.
  8. Meditate to have the direct experience of the Self.
  9. Detach! Keep yourself calm and do not buy into the drama that the mind creates.
  10. See the big picture. Change your perspective.
  11. Connect with Nature. Take a walk; look at trees, the sky, flowers, stars or the moon.
  12. Remember your Immortal Self. Experience beingness and oneness.
  13. Use your senses to bring you back to positivity. For instance, listen to nice music, get a therapeutic massage, practice aromatherapy, contemplate beautiful images or taste delicate food.
  14. Be grateful. Count your blessings.
  15. Be content. Tell yourself, “I already have enough.”
  16. Surrender. What is happening may not be what you want, but it may be what you need. Know that everything happens for a reason.
  17. Acceptance. It is not my will; it is God’s will.
  18. Balance your energy by doing different activities than usual.
  19. Tell yourself. “This too shall pass.”
  20. Tell yourself, “God loves me no matter what.”
  21. Withdraw the attention within and cease comparing.
  22. Refrain from judging yourself and others.
  23. Tell yourself, “This is my opportunity to learn.
  24. Realize that you are only the witness of whatever is happening.
  25. Affirm to do the best you can and let go of the results, good or bad.
  26. Avoid extremes of love and hate.
  27. Come back to the present.
  28. Rest.
  29. Keep trust and faith.

For me – #30. Ride your bicycle – even if you are feeling lazy!

Thanks for reading!

Peace ~ Holly

Born on a Thursday #60 ~ Taking the Plunge

High Mesa Yoga at Pine Cliff

Currently, I teach on Thursday mornings at Truly Fit in Flagstaff, and I am loving it.

snowbowl sunset (c) 2014 Holly TroyAfter much thought, discussion, and encouragement from friends, I’m taking the plunge and expanding my classes. Autumn is coming and many of us (myself included) tend to get back to work (or start working more), go back to school and/or bring our children to and from school, and get busy preparing for fall and winter holidays. As we settle into our new schedules we may find ourselves needing to make time to decompress – that’s where yoga comes in.

I have access to a great space just waiting to be utilized. Now is the time to get things rolling!

I love Flagstaff and wanted a way to honor where I live, so I am calling the space High Mesa Yoga.

Beginning on August 26th (the day after the New Moon in Virgo), classes will begin.

Sunset on the Mesa (c) Holly TroyHigh Mesa Yoga @ Pine Cliff
call or email for directions:
928-380-3019 or sacredfolly@gmail.com
Cost per class: $8.00

Tuesdays (beginning August 26th)
5:15 to 6:30 pm High Mesa Hatha
7:00 to 8:15 pm Peak Tranquility

Thursdays (beginning August 28th)
5:30 to 6:45 pm High Mesa Hatha
7:00 to 8:15 pm Peak Tranquility

Class description

In both classes, students will build flexibility, agility, and strength while increasing mental, physical, and emotional peacefulness. 

High Mesa Hatha: Gentle yet challenging yoga based on the classical styles of Sivananda, Kripalu and Jivamukti yoga. Breathwork (pranayama), vinyasa (flow), asana (postures), meditation and relaxation are key. Release stress and build calm energy.

Peak Tranquility: Wind down with yoga nidra (“yogic sleep” or conscious deep sleep), guided imagery, and intuitive asana to deepen your sense of body/mind awareness and relaxation. Prepare to be refreshed.

What to expect

I am an experienced yoga instructor who offers:
– a safe, non-competitive, supportive, and fun atmosphere;
– small classes (10 to 12 students);
– individual attention and adaptation to personal needs;
– focus on the breath, movement originating from the core, visualization meditation, relaxation; and,
– an open space for suggestions and Q and A.

I have a few extra yoga mats, some blocks and a couple of blankets. Students please bring your own mats and props if possible.

The room is a lovely open space with great floors. A blank canvas really! And, of course, there is access to a bathroom. I will try to post pictures soon. In the meantime, below is a video of me from last winter’s Writing the Energetic Body workshop doing Half Spinal Twist in the newly finished room. Very spare – just me, a mat, and a scarf.

Om shanti.

Thanks for reading!

Have a fantastic week.

Holly

Halcyon Days of Summer

This summer has been more amazing than I ever could have imagined. So much play and being in the moment; mountain biking almost daily, and gaining enough stamina and skill and fitness that I may actually be considering myself an athlete; enjoying nature – celebrating the monsoons and the beautiful flowers they bring, breathing deeply of fresh mountain air, noticing the subtle shifts in temperature and smells as summer moves closer to fall; sunshine; and exploring friendships with a sense of lightness and wonder.

So what next? At the beginning of June I began teaching yoga at Truly Fit, and am Summer Flowers in Flagstaff (c) Holly Troy 2014really loving teaching. I will be starting up small classes on my own in the next couple of weeks. I’ve put a lot of thought into this and am very excited. I’ll be teaching Hatha Yoga focusing on the breath, the core, creative visualization meditation, and relaxation. Stay tuned!

I am also continuing to explore the tarot, reiki, painting, writing – and the mind/body connection of them all.

Halcyon days of summer are filling my creative well! I have so much gratitude for this playful time. My intention is to carry over that playfulness through the long nights of winter.

Is it possible to stock up on happiness? (I know – play, creativity and creative action, meditation, cycling, yoga, mindfulness, and friends – regularly – really keep happiness flowing).

* * * * *

I updated my yoga bio for Truly Fit.

The goal of yoga is the attainment of self-awareness through physical movement, breathing, and meditation. As practitioners increase levels of presence and mindfulness, levels of stress and problems like chronic pain can be reduced. Taking the time to slow down and learning how to be present and notice the body throughout the day can vastly improve health over time. With rates of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease rising, learning self-care and awareness through yoga and meditation is pro-active and sustainable.

I was first introduced to yoga as therapy for an injury when I was 18 and have been practicing ever since. I fell in love with the benefits of yoga and became certified as an instructor in 1996. Since then, I have deepened my investigation of the body’s subtle energies: I am also a reiki practitioner; have created several visualization meditations; and have developed workshops involving yoga, meditation, the mind/body connection and creativity—all of which have deepened my understanding of integrative health, relational physiology, and body awareness . . .

To see the rest, click here.

Yoga Ripples in the World

blue flower faces (c) 2014 Holly TroyWhat a gift! I just saw this post from Onieka’s Yoga Life, and I got goosebumps. Onieka Mays just started teaching yoga at Riker’s Island though Liberation Prison Yoga and the Prison Yoga Project.

An excerpt from Onieka’s blog about her work with the Prison Yoga Project:

. . . Today I met the students. Some were excited to show me a few asanas. Others were thrilled that they would be coming to class. The women were friendly, kind and chatty. A lot of these women are awaiting trial and couldn’t make bail and that’s why they are there. Without much at all to do many seize the opportunity to participate in the programs that are offered. Liberation Prison Yoga incorporates writing, yoga and meditation . . . 

I’m headed to meet Anneke Lucas, founder of Liberation Prison Yoga. I’ll be teaching students here at the Rose M. Singer dorm twice monthly.

Here’s a bit more about Anneke and LPY: 

Liberation Prison Yoga grew out of the need for an organized way to support yoga instructors interested in serving in prisons and jails in New York. Anneke Lucas started creating programs in different facilities in 2011, bringing along many teachers, social workers and psychologists, training them to use a trauma-sensitive approach while sharing their preferred yoga style. Anneke developed yoga programs according to the different needs in different settings, including discussion and free-flow writing in certain classes, and runs groups with sex-trafficked women at Riker’s Island.

 

“We have to be committed to rehabilitation if we are going to be an evolved society, a mature society, a just society. Correctional facilities should be correctional – not just because it’s healthy for the people who are incarcerated, but it’s healthy for all of us.” ~Bryan Stevenson, Grady Bankhead’s Lawyer/Director, Equal Justice Initiative

Check out Onieka’s blog to read the whole piece.

Namaste~