The Tooty Booty Yogi Bear

That’s right people, I’m sure you’ve guessed it. I’m about to write about farting… tooting, if you will. Yup, the ollllle booty tooty topic that no one ever wants to talk about- including me! But I’ve come across some insight that I think is far more important to share than to hide behind for fear of an… *ahem*… awkward silence………….
………………………..
… so….
Anyways, let’s just rip (no pun intended.. okay, maybe a little ;) ) this bandaid off shall we?
So there I am. Ready to get down on some serious yoga. I’d been stressed out over some pretty serious things that were going on in my life and I desperately needed this yoga practice to unwind, refocus, and recenter. I’m not a fan of feeling like I’m off balance and when I step onto my mat, it’s like I’m grounded right in the place that I’m supposed to be. It’s an incredible feeling really… like the cushion of that rolled out mat has my toe prints and body shape already imprinted on it with invitation, just waiting for me to settle in and enjoy the positive energy rushing through me, squeezing out any negative or distracting thoughts, feelings, or emotions. When I leave yoga, I often times very legitimately feel like I’m on a high, and it carries me through the rest of my day with the utmost mindfulness, love, and clarity; more than I could ever hope to take from a cup of coffee or tea (despite how delicious they may be! I’ll still take my down dog please :) ).
As I approached this practice in particular, I was ready for all of that amazingness and then some to take me over and take me away into bliss. The class was a little bit crowded, but I never mind that because by the time I’ve finished my first sun salutation, I’m the only one in the room, and by the time we finish our shavasana (that final meditation), I know that I’m surrounded by even more positive energy than I would be in a less crowded room because everyone else is feeling as fantabulous as I am. So I gladly slid in between two people in the only spot that I could find room enough for little ole me and I smiled to let them know “I come in peace” and also, “I promise I’ll be careful not to smack you in the face as I swan dive into forward fold… I’ve got you, friend.” They smile in acceptance of my peace offering, and we begin.
The entire time I’m focused on each and every posture, mindful to move with grace and passion, being sure to make the most of each and every twist, bend, fold, and balance. Focused, motivated, and feelin strong… I was READY for this!
We step our feet wide apart from top of the mat to the bottom, ready for a wide-legged fold, which is just one of the many that forces us to reallyyyy get to know our neighbors if we’re close enough and distracted enough to notice. I, for one, was determined to remain focused on my own practice as I slowly bended over, sharing my rump side with my dear new peace-friend girl behind me and accepting the same from my man friend in front of me. We were to stay there for a good 5 breaths and I was loving the recovery offered in this pose. 1, inhale, ex-hale… 2, inhale, ex-hale… 3, inhale, ex- TOOT.
… ummmm, what was that?… WHAT. WAS THAT??
Omg.
He didn’t.
Yep… ohhhh yes… yeah, he definitely did.
The man in front of me, you know- the one with his bum in my face- definitely just tooted.IN MY FACE!!
It took absolutely everything I had in me not to laugh… I actually think that the irony of the fact that I wasn’t “supposed” to laugh (not in yoga class, and especially not at the embarrassing expense of someone else) made it even funnier, if that were even possible. I had to finish the rest of my practice with a cheesy weight-bearing grin on my face that was working overtime to keep the secret of giggles from escaping my lips for another 30 minutes as I moved through my practice, hoping and praying that nothing further “escapes” from my windy neighbor… but also, sort of secretly hoping that it would happen again and provoke the laughter of someone else so that I could finally be relieved of my agony with less guilt.
It was awesome. Why? Because truthfully, it was enlightening. I know, I know, crazy, right?! But it’s true! That fart in yoga class put a new spin on my perspective that I think was much needed.
You see, yoga is meant to provide so much more than simply stretching and muscle toning. There’s so much more to it that can be tapped into if you’re truly interested and open to receiving all of its amazing benefits, and that typically takes a lot of discipline, practice, and focus, especially at first. So it’s important to practice this mindfulness as you work through your sessions in order to develop that sustainable motivation, but you know what? It’s also important to laugh. Laughing is one of the most natural stress relievers one can ever have the pleasure of engaging in, and when we take ourselves and our situations too seriously, we limit our potential to tap into that wonderful, blissful pleasure. And that fart totally broke the serious ice for me. For the rest of that practice, I may have been a little less “focused”, but I was also still fully enjoying each move, only in a more playful way, which was actually just what I needed. When I would stumble and fall in a balance pose, I laughed it off and didn’t even need to practice “forgiving myself”, because there was nothing for me to forgive in my mind- so I fell. It happens. So what. Get em next time, tiger. Andddd moving on.
It was an awesome new twist that I couldn’t have anticipated, nor could I have forced. Sometimes it takes something completely unexpected and something that may even be seen as a “fault” or “mistake” to come into our lives and shed some beautiful light that we hadn’t even considered viewing anything from. I’m grateful for that toot that day. Never thought I’d say anything like thatttt, but hey, the truth is the truth! It’s been said that laughter is one of the best medicines… and while I don’t quite know the logistics of any studies related to that statement (I’d be happy to personally test it out for you all and post results later ;) ), I personally believe that it’s absolutely true, and that Farty Marty in my class fully provided that for me (whether he meant to or not).
So thank you, airy neighbor. I don’t want to practice next to you any longerrrrr, but I appreciate you. So… you know, thanks for that. :)
Find the beauty in everything… it’s there! Live in love ❤
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Granola Bear

Ahhh the mind of a hippie. Seems radical, irrational, and overall impractical. But the truth is, it’s only all of those things because the world around us has built such high and strong walls between us in so many different forms- money, status, career success, education level, and even something as ridiculous as physical appearance- that we can’t imagine it possibly being anything more harmonious. But none of that, not one of those walls, has any place in being relevant to how we interact as people, as human beings. We are meant to live this life together, as a family. It sounds crazy when it’s said like that, I get it, I get it. But think about it. Just take a moment and truly think about this… we all want the same thing right? We just want to be happy and to have love in our lives. So…
Be happy. (It is a choice you know.)
Be genuinely happy. Always, and for everyone.
Be supportive, positive, and kind. That will make you happy, I promise.
We can encourage one another toward doing and being our best rather than bringing each other down. Bringing others down will not help you in any way and in fact, will hurt you. The best leaders of our time were supporters of those around them, not haters.

And here it is (you knew this would come)… love. Just love. Unconditionally and without fear.
Do not fear your heart being broken, because it will be, not matter how you approach it. But you simply cannot receive the amazing love that you deserve if you are so closed off or continue distracting yourself from it. Nothing great can come into a closed heart.
And no, you cannot expect anything in return. Giving with the intention to receive or holding expectations is only one-sided and ingenuine (that’s not a word, I know, but it should be, so… :) ) and even more, that is not love. All you can do is give out all that you have (wait for itttt), but in doing so you will be open to receiving what you want and need in the right way at the right time, and it will happen (see? Light at the end of the tunnel).
That means:

  • Love your family more than you ever have before because that is your family and you need to give all that you have regardless of what you get back. Plain and simple.
  • And love your friends the same way… If you care for someone, care for them. Be the friend that you would want someone to be to you. Not everyone will be able or willing to return that back to you in the way that you may want it, but the more that you give out that genuine affection, the more the people you care about will be drawn to and appreciate it. And you will get it back in abundance.
  • While you’re at it, love everyone- strangers, acquaintances, and even “enemies”. Because there are no enemies.
    Everyone has their own life journey and with it comes their own struggles. You never know what a person has had to struggle with to create the hard shell that they hold tightly over them in an attempt to stay sheltered from further blows, or what they’ve endured to cause whatever other difficulties they face in going about life more peacefully. Ultimately, we all want to be happy and to be loved. But to receive it, it has to be given. And it isn’t our place to judge who should and should not receive it, it is simply our place to do our best to give it because truthfully, everyone deserves it. And you never know the difference that you can make in being the one to give it to someone who is seemingly “undeserving”.

Really though, a “hippie” is nothing more than someone with a good heart who wants good for everyone… who may or may not have an affinity for feathered earring and organic clothing… wait, whaaaaat?
The bottom line of it all is that as crazy and weird and ridiculously unattainable as it might seem, we really can live in a more peaceful world among happier smiling faces. There are lots of steps to be taken and strides to be made before it’s ever the perfect coexistence that we’d all LOVE it to be (see what I did there? Hehe), but the best and easiest part is the step that we can all take right here and now to start it off and make our days in this life a little lighter and a little brighter. Ready for it? Because I don’t think I’ve mentioned it enough times yet…

Just. Love.
Be a light.
Show everyone how to love happily and freely and how truly wonderful it is to live that way. Trust me! You’ll be happier for it… yuh hippie. ;)