Is stress really bad for you? – part 2

In my previous blog I described that experiencing a - real or perceived - threat triggers the fight-or-flight response in our body. This reaction makes our brain even more hyper alert to threat. It works in reverse too: negative thoughts trigger stress responses in the...

Is stress really bad for you? – part 1

After reading this first paragraph, close your eyes for a moment. Bring to mind your biggest fear. Imagine yourself being in a situation where you have to cope with this fear. What does the scene look like? Who is there? What do you see? What...

Why I don’t like making Resolutions

I am not a fan of making resolutions. I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, I don’t write big This Is Where I Should Be in Five Years plans, and I won’t even have a fixed plan for my day if I don’t have any appointments...

Why Yin Yoga is a great morning practice

Practicing Yin Yoga poses offers the opportunity to find profound release of tension in the deeper lying tissues of the body, and significantly increase range of motion. Because the nature of this practice is one of passive ‘stretching’*, students often think they need to ‘warm...

Stop the Glorification of Busy

Nowadays - and especially this time of year - many people answer the question: “How are you?” with: “Oh, I am very busy.” As if being busy equals “I am well” or “I am not well”. However, being busy is not something we are, it...

What is ‘Real Life’?

The most common question I’m being asked when leading a yoga retreat (or even after a weekly yoga class) is: “How do I hold on to this when I get back to ‘real life’?” This being: this good feeling, this daily yoga practice, this routine,...

True Freedom – Part 2

In my previous blog I wrote about the importance of cultivating Mindfulness. We need to train our mind to not attach to our outer circumstances, in order to find true freedom. Each moment brings us the liberty to choose how we relate to it. However,...

True Freedom – Part 1

On Tuesday we celebrated Independence Day (4th of July) in the Unites States. Today is His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s birthday (July 6). Two reasons to reflect on what freedom really means. For some people freedom means they can say and do exactly what they want....

The Vitalness of Being Silent

There are two kinds of people: those who like to be quiet and those who like to talk. But even some of the people who like to be quiet look at me glass-eyed when I suggest doing a Day of Silence, or even going on...

My Wake Up Call

Restlessness, one of the Five Hindrances, is a state of mental agitation that keeps us from being present in the moment. When I am experiencing restlessness I know the best thing to do is to sit and meditate. Yet when my mind seems like a...