I don’t have a shred of shoulder flexibility, so for 12 years, any yoga pose that involved lifting my arm over my ear was simply not happening. This morning however, my instructor Anna lifted my arm and pulled it forward so that I was no longer feeling it in my shoulder, but the side of my rib cage. Wow! What a huge difference! I cannot believe that one tiny tweak took me from not doing poses correctly, to MASTERING them! So much for yoga “experience.” Yeah that doesn’t really exist…
Later, as I was driving to work I became humbled by how my life has changed in much the same way. I never set out to try to be who I am. In fact it had nothing to do with me. I became that way because of a bunch of small changes in my life. For example, somewhere along the line I learned to dress better. I didn’t just stop wearing backless shirts and bleaching my hair, it was an evolution. (It was the 90′s, don’t judge!).
Similarly, my freshman year of college, when I was stocking up on easy mac, and realized that I didn’t have any cash in my bank account (ahh the broke college days). The elderly woman behind me saw my angst and paid for all of my groceries. I cried at her thoughtfulness so struck by her compassion. That one small act of kindness made a huge difference in my life and thus shaped who I have become. Now I try to add small acts of random kindness to my every day life. After all, one small tweak could not only change your life but transform someone else’s.
I’m convinced that small changes can make a HUGE impact. Maybe today you decide to start flossing. Maybe tomorrow you buy an extra coffee and give it away. Take out an extra $20 every time you go to the ATM just to give away when you find someone in need. A small change now could mean a different you ten years from now!!
Here are some of my favorite random acts of kindness that you can do for yourself or others every day!
- Buy two lunches when you are out and give the other away to someone in need
- Make a pact with yourself that for every thing you buy- you have to buy something for someone in need (this is mine! I’m a shopping addict and this totally curbs it!)
- Bake an entire batch of cookies just for your bus driver, librarian, teacher, or mailman
- Fill a parking meter that’s close to empty
- Help the elderly with whatever they are doing (walking across the street, carrying their groceries, getting up the stairs)
- Take a child’s pose in yoga instead of muscling through it (I love this one, it shows its ok for me and for others to rest)
- When you are done with a book- pass it along
- Floss your teeth
- Listen to the Wicked soundtrack (you know deep down that you love it!)
- Always buy lemonade from a lemonade stand, always stop at a neighborhood car wash, always buy girl scout cookies, and never turn down a kid selling wrapping paper. They all are doing it because they need something- and your small contribution can give it to them (and get something in return!)
Here is the BEST INSPIRATIONAL VIDEO EVER! Hope you love it!! Maybe watching it will change your life forever!
Have you ever come out of a movie dying to tell your friend how horrible it was? I definitely have. It seems like its really easy to find the fault in everything because if you look for it, you will find it! But similarly, you can also find the good in everything- and it can change your life!
Finding Fault in Everything is Really a Bummer!
I used to think that as negative thoughts came up, I would just whisk them away. Every time lent came around, I would say “I’m giving up negative thinking!!” (Which led to my husband’s repeated gentle prodding “I thought you were giving that up?” every time I started giving my critique). Last week I tried out a new yoga teacher who ended up not being the right personality fit for me (I might be a little picky when it comes to yoga teachers, but you kinda have to be since they are the ones responsible for guiding you physically, mentally, and spiritually, and you want to feel in good hands). After class I was completely ready to critique him to my girlfriend even though she completely loved the class! Why do I need to put in my negative 2 cents? It’s not helping a thing! There is absolutely no reason why I should put negative thoughts into a friend’s head when she only has positive ones!
Life is AWESOME!
So after I thought about this, I came up with a new philosophy for ridding myself of negative thinking. Instead of trying not to make negative comments (which can be ridiculously hard)- I’m just going to make TONS of positive comments! I’ve officially challenged myself to find the good in EVERYTHING. So this week I tried out another new teacher. Normally I might have said he wasn’t a good fit for me, but this time I thought about it a little more. Didn’t I like how happy he was? Didn’t he challenge me? Didn’t I feel like I really nailed my wheel today? Ok so maybe I had a good time. Actually, maybe I had a blast! Why can’t I try tons of teachers? I will learn something new from each of them. The fact that I totally love Peggy Orr’s yoga classes in Mill Valley doesn’t exclude me from being able to enjoy other classes in Marin!
Afterwards, I thanked my teacher, and told my friend about how I loved how he got me into my wheel! Instead of trying NOT to say how he wasn’t a good fit, I chose to say the good things. This thought process alone has helped me drastically alter my week. The more positive things you do, the more positive you are! So I’m sticking to it! It’s Christmas after all and we all have PLENTY to be happy about!
MERRY CHRISTMAS!Read More