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Synchronicity – The Beauty of Coincidences

Photo by Mike Bailey-Gates
Name the greatest of all inventors. Accident. ~Mark Twain

I missed Yoga this AM, as I thought it was Wednesday instead of Tuesday . . . a recent side effect of finding it hard to sleep and easy to wake up. The irony of all this is I sent the above quote streaming into Twitter space right before I rushed into an empty yoga room. Accident–the greatest of all inventors.

My newly gained, completely open hour gave me the opportunity to write this piece, spend more time in meditation, and just allow my day to flow as it is.

As I approached my 28th year last month, I’ve learned that mistakes, “accidents” and synchronicities are a recurring open door that provide us with an opportunity to address what really needs our attention. While a simple analogy, sometimes it is in the most ordinary moments of our day where there is wisdom to be found…even in missed yoga.

Effective Communication with Mindfulness

Photo by Lauren

Have you ever had the experience while talking to someone where the person is really not listening to you? They act like they are but it is obvious that they aren’t. The ironic part is that they probably think they are communicating with you but on some level you just feel that you weren’t heard at all.

Communication is something we all engage in on a daily basis but due to the pace of our lives, conversations become just formalities. It is like when you go to the store and the cashier asks you: “how are you?” It’s as if she was on cruise control as opposed to really being interested in how you are doing.

Living mindfully isn’t limited to meditation, but can also be applied to effective communication in our daily interactions with other people. This article takes a look at 10 effective communication tips using the principles of mindfulness.

The Building Blocks of a Good Life

Photo by Chloe Elise

Seeing a young child at play always makes me smile. Haven’t you looked at a young giggling face and felt joy, and maybe even a little envy? Wouldn’t it be great to recapture some of that childlike wonder and love of life again?

The truth is, the good life is closer than we think, as close as watching a child play.  But how can watching a child play show us how to live a good life?

Picture in your mind a toddler playing with blocks. They are caught up in the wonder of each block, all the different shapes and colors and sizes.

They take each one in their hand, turning it all around in wonder & joy. There are some blocks that will be their favorites, but if even a favorite one rolls under a couch they will soon let it go & keep playing with the others.

Focus – How to Get It Done

Photo by Sandra Lara

When ever I find myself feeling frazzled by the distractions and never-ending list of to-dos, the answer to finding peace always come back to focus. “Focus, focus, focus!” my heart would say, while my mind is off racing in a hundred different directions.

Lately, when people ask me, “How are you?” my response has been “Busy”.

It’s true. I have been busy. Yet when I reflected deeper into why I’m busy, I discovered that I am mostly busy thinking about how busy I am.

I mean, yeah, I have a lot of tasks on my plate, but when I observed myself from a place of silent presence, I discovered that a huge amount of my time and energy was spent cycling through my list of growing to-do items in my head.

Prayer For Healing

Editor’s Note

I am privileged to introduce Rahi to our TSN family. Rahi was my beloved yoga teacher during my 3 months stay in India, and had guided me to bliss on many occasions. To me, she is the embodiment of grace. The following was originally an email she had sent to me, which we edited to share with you here, along with a practical meditation that anyone can do at home. With love, -Tina

An event such as this reminds us of the impermanent nature of our lives. It helps us remember that what's most important is to love each other, to be there for each other, and to treasure each moment we have that we are alive. This is the best that we can do for those who have died: we can live in such a way that they continue, beautifully, in us. ~Thich Nhat Hanh

When I saw the horrific scenes of the terrible earthquake and the tsunami that have devastated Japan and its people, my first response was one of deep pain.

All that my family, friends and I could talk about, and keep seeing again and again were the ongoing pain-filled visuals that every TV channel around the world was beaming into every home.

Then came the emails, facebook postings, tweets, phone calls, etc….everyone was reaching out to every other person possible spreading the alarm and concern.

The cataclysmic events in Japan became personal because a dear student and now a fellow yoga teacher was living there. I was desperate to know that he and his family were safe.

How to Wake Up Early

After reading last week’s article on problem solving, Tina casually mentioned wanting to wake up early. I felt inspired to write a piece on how to wake up early. For the past 4 months, I’ve been consistently waking up early—5am specifically. This article contain tips I’ve found helpful to become an early riser.

4:45 a.m. arrives and our bedroom becomes a full on symphony of battling alarms: my husband’s starts at 4:45, mine follows at 5:00, his chimes back in again at 5:00 (in unison with mine), and depending on the snooze capacity that day … we may even have one more finale at 5:15 a.m.

The coffee grinder is also programmed to go off at 5 a.m. The aroma and grinding sound of coffee beans travels all the way from the downstairs kitchen to our bedroom upstairs.

Problem Solving Secrets

Photo by aeschleah

I recently discovered a simple technique for problem solving that I thought you guys would love. But before diving in to this effective problem solving process, let me tell you the background story.

Lately, I’ve been struggling with this feeling of unproductive frustration. Maybe you can relate: feeling like you should be doing something, but you feel stuck, somehow unable to take productive action towards some end goal.

My problem is that I feel like I have a million things to do; yet I am finding it difficult to make any real progress with any of my projects. As a result, a whole day can go by without me making any progress forward.

Each day, when I look up to see that it’s already 3pm, I’ll start to feel frustrated at myself. I’ll feel annoyed that I had allowed another fruitless day to pass. I’d kick myself mentally for having “wasted” another precious day, which doesn’t help to inspire me to productivity or happiness.

Confessions of a Manipulator

Photo by Sara Lando

As a child, I didn’t quite fit in the role of your average kid growing up. I guess you could say I was a typical sensitive, quiet child—a “Mama’s boy” if you will. I enjoyed music, reading, knitting, and skipping with the girls, while my older brother played pee-wee hockey, little league baseball, and collected sports memorabilia.

Evenings at our home usually meant my brother and father watching Hockey Night in Canada, while my mother and I would watch The Love Boat, Dallas, or whatever other cheesy 80′s television program was playing at the time.

Many evenings and several hockey games later, my brother and father got to use the big color TV in the living-room, while mom and I got stuck watching the little black and white in the bedroom. That hardly seemed fair. But as long as Mom and I were together, I felt safe.

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