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Ep 83- 25 Minute Meditation: Finding Your Center In Difficult Situations

30 Aug

Space- Artwork for Ep. 83 of Elsie's Yoga Class

These past few months I nearly got overwhelmed by anxiety.

This hasn’t happened to me in a LONG time.

I lost control of my rational thought process and simply dove into a feeling that was suffocating and terrifying. I can’t say that I was in any way comfortable. The only thing that pulled me out of it was my toddler Hunter. She forced me to get out of myself and engage her. The moment that I disconnected from her off I went into a very uncomfortable sense of overwhelm.

I refused this.

Take Control of Your Anxiety and Fear

Instead of allowing myself to be pulled by this avalanche of anxiety and fear I chose to meet it, with softness and full consciousness. I looked at it straight in the eye. I used a technique that I heard in a podcast, and I sooooo wish that I remembered what episode and what this guy’s name was because I would share it, believe me, but at this moment, finding the episode would take me YEARS, so that will wait. I may update this post to add the info.

Anyway, the technique was to feel where the emotion was in my body, fully. You are to notice which was its winding, clock wise or counter clock wise, and slowly unwind the feeling the other way until it dissolves. At first just moving into that hard ball of tension in the middle of my diaphragm was enough…but as I practiced this technique I began to see that I could literally unravel the anxiety!

Unraveling- It’s all about creating space, space to feel, to choose, to remember, and to find your ground. Most importantly, finding space helps you remember that you are part of something so much bigger. Anxiety is about disconnection and isolation. It’s an emotion that rises when you absolutely become limited and small. As you unravel the feeling, you begin to get more spacious, there is literally more room in your body, your breath, your mind, your heart, and you can step back a bit and see things as if you are watching from a bird’s eye view.

You are ok. You truly are. You are more than ok in fact :D

A couple of days ago I received and email from one of you requesting a more breathing centered practice. Although this simple audio meditation is not specifically about the breath, there is no way to escape the breath. Space is breath.

Every time choose to center myself and incorporate this very accessible and easy meditation practice, you get the opportunity to re-attune yourself to align with something more than anxiety and fear.

I want that!

Listen, practice and do this and tell me what happens! I’d love to hear if this works for you

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Do you have any techniques for dealing with anxiety and challenging situations?

Remember I’m here to serve you, so feel free to comment and tell me if meditations like this offer you support and ease :D

BTW, the following is the song that I used in the meditation. Was that not the most beautiful song?

Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai Sampler, Vol. 1-4Kitaro
“South Wind” (mp3)
from “Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai Sampler, Vol. 1-4″
(Domo Records)

Buy at iTunes Music Store
Buy at Amazon MP3
More On This Album

Ep. 82: Stay Open, Learn, Choose the Highest and Share Level 2, 90 Min Yoga Class

10 Aug

YoGeek iPhone mudra, Polaroid, iPhone 4 yoga, iPhone 4 love

An iPhone 4 Yoga Class For Your Enjoyment!

And here I thought that I was going to get some time to be able to publish more episodes to you guys…in JULY.

Not so much, but alas! Here’s a yoga class to start the month off right! This one is close to my heart. It’s focus is all about the way we are swayed and often times misguided by what we see and hear all around us, especially the media. It is a call to take responsibility for our choice making and the way we go about making choices. The inspiration for this class came straight from all the hoopla around the iPhone 4 and its antenna issues.

If you happen to follow me on Twitter or are part of the Facebook Elsie’s Yoga Kula Community, you would know that I have an iPhone 4! Yipeeee! So I speak from my own experience with the device, and I’m totally loving it!

Given that I’m sure you have heard at least something about the whole antenna thing, so I sorta offer my 2 cents about it and wrap it around a yoga class.

What’s interesting about this theme is that it mirrored the hoopla around an article on my beloved teacher John Friend in the NY Times. If you haven’t already, please read the article, John’s response to the article PLUS Elephant Journal’s exclusive interview with John. Interesting how perspectives and opinions shift and change if you simply choose to step deeper into them :) And move from your heart.

This week’s online yoga class

This yoga podcast class is a level 2 class, and if you have a yoga block in the house, please feel free to take it out and play with it during our backbends towards the end of class. I cut a bit of the class in the middle because I did a demo that doesn’t really work if you weren’t there so why put you guys through it :) If you do hear references to it, or to another demo that I had a student do, just dismiss them. Pretend that you went to the bathroom during that part of the class!

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The Yoga Class Sequence

REMEMBER THAT IF YOU OWN THE IPHONE APP THE CLASS SEQUENCE COMES WITH THE EPISODE :)

Downward Facing Dog

Eka Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana Opening Hip

One legged Downward Facing Dog opening the hipOne legged Downward Facing Dog with crazy open hip

High lunge onto straight leg on the front leg

straight legged lungeparsvottanasana variation

Downward Dog

Plank

Bend elbows 3 inches

Crescent pose into Lunge Twist

Uttanasana x ardha uttanasana

uttanasanaardha uttanasana

Hands on hips shoulders up stand

Arms up interlace hands

Tadasana With Arms Interlaced Above the Head

Contrast shoulder loop

Big shoulder stretch

Surya namaskar x 2

tadasanaurdhva hastasanauttanasana ardha uttanasana plank pose chattarunga dandasana cobradownward facing doguttanasana ardha uttanasanaurdhva hastasanatadasana

Wide stance uttanasana with arms interlaced behind the back

Surya namaskar to Downward Facing Dog

Vira 2 into reverse vira

warrior IIreverse warrior

Vinyasa

plank pose chattarunga dandasana cobradownward facing dog

Trikonasana/ ardha chandrasana/ trikonasana

Down dog

Trikonasana sequence

Vinyasa

plank pose chattarunga dandasana cobradownward facing dog

Uttanasana/ardha uttanasana

uttanasanaardha uttanasana

Standing hip stretch

Standing Hip Stretch Front (shrub)Standing Hip Stretch (shrub)

Standing hip stretch into standing baby craddle

LOTS OF TALKING

deep lunge with back leg straight

Deep Lunge with back knee on the floor deep lunge with forearms on the floor

ardha bhekasana

DD with knees bent for lower back adjustment

Pigeon with Thigh stretch

Eka Pada Rajakapotasana with a thigh stretch

Downward Facing Dog

Uttanasana

hands of hips shoulders up stand up

BLOCK GATHERING

setubandha with block in between the thighs

(optional into Urdhva Dhanurasana)

setubandha with block in between your shins

(optional into Urdhva Dhanurasana)

Urdhva Dhanurasana or Bridge pose

easy supine twist

Supta Padangustasana variation with bottom leg bent/straightening the bottom leg

Savasana

EYK Episode 6: Newsletter, Inspiration and First Time in Yoga Class

19 Jul

Inspiration in Eka Hasta Bhujasana: Elsie's Yoga Kula Episode 6

Hello everybody and welcome to EYK episode #6!

Just in case you are a new listener, the Elsie’s Yoga Kula Episodes are all about community. There are times when I want share with you guys more than the few minute intro that my Yoga Class Episodes allow me ;) This is where I share some of the feedback that I’ve gotten from you guys, plus answer some questions I get, or anything else that I desire to put out

Today’s episode has some inspiring feedback from you guys, PLUS and interview with my twitter buddy Scott from Boston who shares all about his experience going to yoga for the first time ever! Some pretty cool insights from his perspective.

This episode is brought to you by Elsie’s Yoga Class Podcast App for the iPhone and iPod touch, you can find it in the iTunes App Store for $3.99. The extra features for this episode of EYK is a snippet of one of my therapy workshops talking about What is Optimal Blueprint! So check it out you guys :)
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What’s in the Podcast?

Ep 81: Immerse Your Value into The Heart and HOLD! 85 min Level 2 Yoga Class

20 Jun

Elsie Escobar and Hunter Rose Miyan

The them for this class was inspired by this episode of Merlin Mann’s talk at Rutger’s University. Check out the talk. Not about yoga, but very yogic. I think he’s awesome.

Let it Go From Your Head and Drop In Your Heart

I know that if I asked you who or what you hold valuable and dear you could tell me without much thought. I’m sure that you’ve thought about how much your family, your homes, your friends, your culture, etc. means to you. I’m sure that now that I’ve brought your attention to this, you have a clear idea in your head and feel pretty strong about where you place your value.

The thing is, that we think about this too much. I mean that we keep that which we value in our thinking mind. We intellectualize much more than we internalize it, within our hearts. There is a level of detachment that comes with it. Yes, we love our family. Yes, we love our friends. Yes, we value our home. Here’s the question: Do your actions, from day to day, from moment to moment honor and abide by that higher intention? If we could graph our daily activity, and our daily thoughts, what truly takes up the majority of our days? What would it show?

I know that for me, my graph would show huge interaction with my cellphone and my ipod. It would also show me constantly checking my email, FB, Twitter, and stats. (Note the word checking, there is no actual engagement involved.) And these are my physical behaviours behaviors I am also guilty of being with my daughter and having my mind full of everything BUT my daughter. I think more about podcasts, blog posts and creating content on a daily basis than I think about my breath, my body and growing my relationship with those that I have said I hold valuable. There are countless opportunities to deepen relationships. There is enough time. I know that I tend to leak my energy in places, thoughts and actions that in no way deserve it. Unconsciously, through my thoughts and actions I am serving and cultivating less than optimal relationships.

The level of commitment and discipline required to sustain an optimal level of engagement and relationship in our lives is great. It requires that we choose, and choose again, always refining and clarifying moment to moment. We must sustain the focus throughout our days, slowly building a strong internal practice, that lets us be at once soft and steady.

As I became aware of this for myself, I had to share this. I know that I am not alone. My desire is to place what I value in my heart, not in my head. My desire is to engage and hold the sacred where it’s meant to be.

How about you? Do you observe your behaviors and thoughts serving and cultivating less than optimal relationships? In what ways to do abide by the Highest?

Start By Breathing

FYI! There’s a video towards the end of the post to supplement this episode :)

And speaking of the video…Thank you my dear and lovely sponsors Prancing Leopard Organics! The clothes that I’m wearing in the video are from them and I ADORE them :D Listen to the intro to this episode to get your coupon code for 15% off your purchase!

This episode’s online yoga class podcast is a Level 2 class.

This class was recorded at BYS Yoga Studio in Pittsburgh on April 29, 2010

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The Sequence of Yoga Poses for this online yoga class:

Downward Facing Dog Hold

Uttanasana Hold

Downward Facing Dog/Eka Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana/Straight Legged Lunge

downward facing dogone legged downward facing dog with hips squaredstraight legged lunge

Uttanasana

Hands on Hips Shoulders up and Stand up

WIDE STANCE TO THE SIDE

Warrior II

warrior II

Prasarita Padottanasana

prasarita padotanasana

Parsvakonasana

Parsvakonasana

Prasarita Padottanasana with arms interlaced behind the back

prasarita padotanasana

Trikonasana/Ardha Chandrasana

trikonasana ardha chandrasanatrikonasana

Prasarita Padottanasana with option to hold the big toes

prasarita padotanasana

Tree Pose

Uttanasana

Plank

Chattarunga Hold

chattarunga dandasana

Upward Facing Dog

Balasana

Eka Pada Rajakapotasana

Pigeon Prep

Downward Facing Dog

Heel Sit

Supported Back Bend With 2 Blocks

restorative backbend with blocks

VARIATION Supported Supta Virasana With Blocks

Child’s Pose

Supported Supta Baddha Konasana

Supported Baddha Konasana

Savasana

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