magic self worth happiness

Topic of Week: Self-Confidence

Chakra to Manifest Self-Confidence

solar plexus

Ram Meditation:

Find a comfortable space and posture, close the eyes, focus on even breaths, and relax.     Begin with 5 minutes a day and add a minute or so each day.

 

 

orlando yoga empowerment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real Talk:  Self-Confidence

In order to obtain and improve self-confidence we have to  begin to believe in ourselves and STEP OUT OF OUR COMFORT ZONES.  Going out of our comfort zone can sound over-whelming.   The good news is, we can break things down into small pieces; carrying a single brick at time to build a strong foundation, rather than trying to carrying the whole house at once.

 

  • Take personal responsibility. keyphrase.  Many times we second guess ourselves after others express doubt.   Remind yourself of why it is right. When someone expresses disapproval, ask yourself
    • Ask yourself does my choice harm?
    • How does this affect the person?
      • We are trained to figure out what the risks are. Loved ones may be looking out for your well-being by expressing their doubts and disapproval.   Be grateful for their input but resist the urge to give up only for appeasing others.
      • We are also told to be polite. Yes, being kind is important.   We can be much kinder by being our true selves and not holding resentment for limiting ourselves because of what others may think.
    • Speak your truth. Speak with kindness and compassion.
      • Be honest with yourself. We must first allow ourselves to be open and honest with ourselves.  We cannot communicate to others what we need or want if we ourselves are not sure.
      • Be honest (and kind) with others. Set the tone.
        • We do not have to agree with others. We should respect that we are all on different journeys and learn to empathize with others yet not feel the need to have to agree.
          • A perfectly acceptable response. “Thank you for sharing your opinion. We have different views on opinions”.
        • Reinforce good behavior and do not accept bad behavior.
          • Give compliments when someone does something you like. “I appreciate <insert good behavior>”
          • Express when you’re not comfortable with certain behaviors. “I am not comfortable with <insert action>, please stop”.  If not possible, remove yourself as soon as possible.  Never apologize for not accepting unkind behavior.  We can be kind and not be doormats.
        • Make time for yourself. Many of us juggle many plates at once. We want to be supportive, helpful, and accomplish our long to-do list.   In order to serve others, we first have to take the time for our self-care.
          • It is okay to say no.  We are gifted each day with limited time and energy.  Use it mindfully.
            • Example: Invitations to outings from loved ones, co-workers or the person we met that one time at that one place.  We want to support and don’t want to make the person feel bad if we decline.  Graciously declining, rather than showing up only half there, is the kind thing to do. Express your gratitude for the invitation and kindly say: “Thank you but I don’t have time for this occasion”.
            •  Taking on additional work when we are stretched too thin (no pun intended).  It is okay to decline making cupcakes for your neighbor brother’s goat bake sale.  Doing things when we are recharged is a lot more rewarding.
              • Fine Print: keyword here is mindfully choosing how we spend our energy.  Skipping an important business meeting to meditate an extra hour?  Well, a pink slip may be the karmic response.   However, politely declining an invitation to go to your cousin’s dog birthday party to catch up on much need rest?  I think the karma police will definitely let it slide.  If you want brownie points, maybe send Fido a tennis ball to chew 🙂
        • Set Goals and Take Risks. We aren’t talking jumping out of a plane with no knowledge if your parachute will open type risks.  To grow confident in ourselves we have to start doing the things we keep telling ourselves we cannot.   The first step is to change I can’t with I could. Next time you catch yourself thinking or saying “I can’t” stop IMMEDIATELY and do the following:
          • Pause and take a deep breath.
          • Repeat “I could”, three times. What we tell ourselves becomes reality.
          • Begin to visualize the steps to take “I could” and turn it into “I can”.   
            • Take yourself on a visual journey.
              • For example: People often say to me that “I could never <insert a challenging physical movement>”.   Let’s take running a marathon for a visual ride…..buckle up yogis!Image result for vroom vroom
                • Visualize your desired result.  Visualize yourself running past the finish line; picture the shoes touching down onto the pavement, the sweat trickling down your face, the smile of accomplishment, the heavy beating of your heart. Now, I know for some this sounds less than great (myself included) but stay with me.  You did it!  You ran your first visual marathon.
                • Visualize the steps.  Now ask yourself what can I do to get to the marathon finish line. What steps would it take?
                  • Learn as much as you can about running. Maybe hire a coach or join a group.
                  • Put on your running shoes.
                  • Step outside.
                  • Begin to place one foot in front of the other. You’re jogging!
                  • The first attempt may only take you a few steps. Take a rest and try again.
                  • Each attempt you gain a little more distance.  It becomes a little easier.
                  • After extensive training, hard work, and positive thinking you’re ready for your first marathon.
              • Comparing ourselves to others.  What does this or a marathon have to do with self-confidence? A lot.   Have you ever seen someone doing something that seems nearly impossible/super human?   How often have you thought to yourself: “I could NEVER”?   What tends to happen is we see someone doing something we would love to do, such as run a marathon (again just an example….I personally prefer to sit in snow without a jacket).  We think of only the end result, the other person running across the finish line.   We then think “wow, that’s impressive, I could never”.  We forget to take into account all the steps and challenges it took for that person to get there.  By breaking it down we leave the burden of comparing ourselves and feeling defeated.  We see that we could.
    • Turn “I could” into I can and decide if you WANT to. The self-assurance that we can may be exactly what is needed. We now have a plan and it’s there is we WANT to use it.  So run to the finish line, if that’s your thing.  Or don’t and smile confidently knowing you can if you darn well want to.
  • Learning from challenges. Our life presents us the choice to make mistakes which we regret or take those challenges as an opportunity to reflect, learn and grow from them.  Dwelling on the past won’t change what has already happened, but it can keep you from enjoying the present.
    • Joe’s Path. Joe has been walking the same path for years.  Joe begins his walk, on the same path, each day the same.  A new hole has just been dug and Joe falls in.  In a bit of fury and covered in dirt, he climbs out and thinks to himself: “My day is ruined!”  There entire day he continues to replay the fall, telling everyone.  He is so consumed he misses the good news his friends wanted to share, the announcement about his favorite band in town, and so many of the little things that day.  The next day, he is still preoccupied about the fall, he walks the same path and falls in again.  This time, he sits in the bottom of hole thinking: “just my luck”.  Another day ruined as he only focuses on how unlucky he is.  His bad luck follows him. This continues, day after day.  Each day seeming to bring a darker cloud.  On his birthday, Joe decides to stop and takes a breath before heading off on the same path, thinking to himself “Today will be different.  Today is MY day.  Today will be great!”.   Joe, who is smiling for the first time in ages, passes the hole without falling in.   The entire day is brighter than before.  He finds good luck with every moment.   As he is laying in bed, he thinks “today was a good day.  Tomorrow will be even better”.  Joe wakes up feeling energized and ready to tackle the day.  With a clear mind, Joe realizes there is a better path, one with no hole.  Joe starts on his new path.   He is even able to save enough time to stop and smell the lovely flowers along the way.
      • Did Joe luck change?  Was there some hocus pocus spell removed?  No, what changed is Joes perspective.  Once he stopped focusing on all that was going wrong, he was able to find a solution.
  • Accept compliments. Resist the urge to correct someone when they give you a compliment or wonder why.  Be grateful for words of kindness and express gratitude to the person speaking kind words to you, if not for yourself do it for the other person.
  • Speak words of kindness.  Next time you notice someone or something positive, speak up.   Sharing kind words not only makes others feel good, it raises our own energy level and starts a chain reaction.  Be sure to keep the words you speak to yourself kind.
  • There is no quick fix. Building confidence takes effort.  It takes determination.   We must continue to pick ourselves up, dust our self off, and reassure ourselves “we can”.
    • Be mindful. Keep Going!

 

Power of Mindfulness

Pose of week:  Focus on Self-Confidence

Goddess Pose (Utkata Konasana in Sanskirt)

 

 

Bring your focus to standing powerfully and grounding.

Steps:

  1. Start feet wide, toes pointing forward
  2. Bend knees, align knees over ankles.
  3. Strong and long spine
  4. Strong and engaged legs
  5. Arms out wide, elbows bent
  6. Heart shine forward
  7. Breathe into belly

 

 

 

Take away:

 

Believe in the magic that is you.

 

magic self worth happiness

 

 

 

heart chakra, love, acceptance, yoga

Topic of Week: Unconditional Love

 

 

Unconditional Love is love without conditions.

Our topic is Unconditional Love.  Let us focus on manifesting unconditional love….. for ourselves, those around us, and all that surrounds us.

Do you feel you have experienced unconditional love? Some of us have been surrounded by this knowing from a very young age.   Our entire life, we may have  been blessed with a circle of support and the feeling of unconditional love.   This fuels knowing the feeling and using this energy to continue to manifest our energy into growing and sharing this love.  There may have been times we’ve had a lack of this type of love.   The great news is, when we have done without something so essential we know the feeling of needing which allows for empathy and being in tune to the essential need.

We are capable of manifesting anything we need.   Let us focus our energy on growing our capacity to give and receive unconditional love.  This means letting go of expectation and embracing each opportunity to love for the sake of love.   The best way to receive love is to give love freely, unconditionally.

Use this mantra to grow your capacity to give and receive true unconditional love:  I am unconditional love….yes it is that simple.  Look in the mirror, say it out-loud, repeat often.

Unconditional Love and YOUR Yoga Practice:

Chakra of week to manifest unconditional love:

Heart Chakra (Anahata 4th Chakra)

Image result

All chakras are important.  The heart chakra is known to help us recognize and get in touch with our sacred and core truth which runs through all of life and connects us to the universe.

Heart Chakra Mantra (sound):

Yam

Try this 10 minute heart chakra meditation:

Pose to open your Heart Chakara:

Camel Pose (Ustrasana in Sanskirt)

Bring your focus to opening the heart and shining toward the sky.

Steps:

  1. Kneel on mat (legs hip width apart)
  2. Place both hands on hips
  3. Lift sternum up
  4. Stay in step 3 or begin to deepen back bend to your level of comfort
  5. To exit, bring chin toward chest and hands on hips.   Engage core and hands for support.  Come up slowly with control.

Crystals for Heart Opening:

Rose Quartz

Take away:

Love.

Confluence

Where do the waters run when time has stood them still?
To hold within my mind, and keep this place that never was; that I could always drink my fill.
The waters of our life stream endlessly from the mountain to the plain, to lay upon its fertile soil and dissipate at will.

Such was but a moment, as the droplet settled upon the sand, to wink from existence as the sun set upon the fells.
Where the waters once swirled in the confluence of our creativity,
Lays barren a cracked bed of earth, a story in the tangled pattern it does tell.

You cannot step into the same river twice, for the waters flow to the sea,
And footprints on the sand are washed away with the tide, as you were from me.
The abyss of lost opportunity and broken dreams; time has taken to its place of secrets the key.

Of softness they flow effortlessly, let still the waters of my heart and peace reside in equanimity.
Sweet cool memory, flows from my fingertips, of times before the storms lived effortlessly.
And as I close my eyes and call within my soul; a river from long ago, engulfing me mercifully.

©JFK

Humanity

Is it my responsibility? My duty to my humanity, the unconditional caring for you, and for me. For would we not find true beauty in less clutter and more unobstructed clarity? To choose with but a moment’s thought to trade a myopic paradigm and see with the eyes of another; their inner landscape and their reality. Not a grand gesture, not the cosmic shift of energies or cataclysms we imagine. Just a little kindness from me, so that you can know that life in its momentary lapses finds a bit of laughter and true joy with nothing monetary; for all I expended was a little effort and great humility.

It is just a thought within me, that I need to find my connection to the whole. To serve my purpose in the cosmic reality and to knit this sweater of holistic wellbeing between you and me. It is the particle dance of energies; for we enter as two and become one that never was henceforth until we found our similarities, to provide a bond of incomparable strength, only the Universe could grant an expenditure of such energy. So we humanity, forever now bound by a commitment of quantum entangling energy, in an age of mutuality, our shared purpose manifest as positivity.

Just a breath in a collective universal sigh, a step we take together, shall it be left or right, the heart speaks directly from our lips, spreading like the dawn across the eastern plane and we stare in wonder as a child for there is no understanding just knowing in this that the heart found its purpose and we could do no more.

So maybe this is the meaning of life, that convergence of heart, and mind and spirit in pure action with motives that defy possibility and manifest in loving kindness to all Humanity.

©JFK March 5, 2017

Adventures

May your life be a series of adventures. Linking themselves one to the next with the vibrancy of the moment and the soft whispers that echo in memory. May your plans unfold in the wild tapestry of uncertainty and weave a path to eternity. It is not enough that you stood on the mountain but much more that the mountain has come to reside in your heart. It is the smile and the rain that fell upon your head as you looked across the landscape and realized that you would wish to be here in this moment, in this time and in this very place at the end of your days. Let the wonder and excitement always overwhelm and dispel any trepidation or fear.
There will be regrets but hopefully you shall look upon them and sigh for in the end that was the choice to make and for all that it brought; you would not be here today, looking upon the ocean of the possibilities of your life if not for those misadventures. A life that encompasses a universe within your mind and heart. It is that reflection bouncing from one wave to the next, in between the beats of our heart that is the true measure of what we accomplish and maybe silence is far more profound than the cacophony of the life we live.
So let the adventure begin, hold fast to that which is the essence of you, a golden drop of sunlight, the velvet rose petal, the tear upon the sand and the warmth of love and hope eternal. These are the things we take on the adventures we manifest for ourselves. And when we return something new will be added to our lives, it shall take root and it shall be there for all your days, it is curious and it is restless for it is the insatiable desire that grows within us to find, to experience, to share and finally come to peace with the collection of memories that shape who we are and who we are continually becoming.
So draw in your breath … close your eyes and pull to you the adventures of your life in their varied and kaleidoscope of color… breathe out; it is time to dream of your next adventure, and it must know it too will find a beautiful home within you. ©JFK March 1, 2017

On This Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is not Chocolates, or cards or roses in a foil laden box… it is that which is unsaid within our hearts cast upon the solar winds lightly sprinkled with stardust and settling ever so gently upon us on the day of our creation.

We humans create endless, useless things which we cast away but at the very root of our being like the tree within the acorn, there is a kernel that represents our soul. If one day science does find a way to understand humans I think it will find love is the actual makeup of who we are. It is our unlimited capacity to find beauty within another and to want to bond to that for all time. For to be human is to be a seeker and for all we seek love, though we call it by many names and its shape is unique to each … it is love and it is essential for our survival.

So on this Valentine’s Day it is not the simplistic romantic notion that I write upon, it is something on a grander scale I see.. a love for all humanity for that which makes us unique and gives us purpose. It is the noble quality within us, it is that which removes doubt and gives us hope and it is that which we call upon when we have exhausted all other avenues, and it never fails us: for love has miraculous powers and is able to remove the darkest of clouds and the deepest of scars with but an utterance from our lips.

So as I awake and look upon the day, I see the endless web of love, it is within the rock, and the leaf of the tree, it is the ocean teaming with life, and the stars that twinkle at me, it is that feeling that drives me and it is in each season of life’s creativity, for you see we cannot escape this thing that is responsible for you and me. We are wound upon its axis, we drink from its life force. Each a player in its larger reality for in this Universe it is my nature to love you and you to love me.

(Jennifer Falagrady Katona Valentine’s Day 2017)

Reflections On This New Year’s Eve

Reflections are only images lost in time, so take one last moment of 2016 and reflect… breathe in and let it go. We don’t wish to save that which has not served us in 2016 or any other era. We each have that which we regret, please no more regrets, let it go you have no way of changing it now.

Look to the future, let the sweetness of days past provide the pallet for the life you wish to live now. Each moment spent in the past robs you of the moment in your present and will prevent you from creating moments in your future.

Love deeply, and truly, there is no greater gift you can give yourself or the Universe. Love is available to us all, open your heart, allow it to happen for you. It is never too late, breathe in and let the magic begin.

You have no idea how many moments you will be given in this life, to waste but one is a travesty. I enter 2017 with a different mindset than the one the ushered in this year. I believe that what I dream tonight will manifest tomorrow and all the tomorrows that are to follow. I will not be living for some future moment in time but for the one I am immersed in right now. It is what matters, it is what I can hold and when it is gone I will breathe in and let it go.

2017 I am ready for you… I leave my tears in 2016 and I await the magic that will come. For tonight I believe that each moment I am here is a gift not to be squandered frivolously. So I breathe in and now I let it go… join your brothers and sisters in the continuum of time for I have no use of what was…I am too busy living NOW.

JFK in the last moments of 2016

Wise Words

I ran across an article, titled “Wise Words” written by Matthew Bauman in AOPA Flight Training Magazine with a great introduction that not only relates to pilots.

I rewrite the article introduction for the Yogi, but these wise words are for anyone in any walk of life.

 

The wisest advice for any successful Yogi is twofold: Do the simple things well, and maintain your humility.

We are all human and therefore prone to mistakes. Acknowledge this and accept it, but remain vigilant.

Be aware that there will always be someone more skillful or knowledgeable than you.

Maintaining our humility allows us to pass on what we have learned, as well as to recognize our shortcomings and seek improvement.

Humility makes us better individuals.

Those who embraced this concept are remembered for their integrity and great achievements, and the ones who ignored it are remembered for their downfall.

Fortunately, there are some very wise Yogis who remember where they started—in the same place as many of you are today—and enthusiastically mentor the next generation.

Seek them out and your potential is endless.

It Will Always Be Thanksgiving Day

Gaze upon the table set to perfection; with silent prayer the chairs I count,
A tear upon my cheek for you were not there.

The wine I poured forth, a glass I raise to you, and in simple words know: I miss you.

Let not the dust settle too long, and the past tarnish the new day,
In serenity I sit here amidst the finery that I would give away.

Forgive me; for the words could not profess, not in grandeur or simplicity how your presence changed the world for me.

All that I have, I would give to you and yet I knew that our paths diverged that day
…may you find your way, happiness along your journey,
Let peace wash over your heart like cinnamon cream upon cocoa.

Always I shall set a place for you;
A smile you bring to my lips and a warmth to my heart,
So if you should find yourself back this way know that it will always be Thanksgiving Day.

©JFK

The Reconciliation of Alternate Realities

We let life drift to the mundane; so that it becomes the bar by which we set the standard of our achievements. The motions come one after the next, no thought, but a mechanical meandering through our days. It is only when the world appears to go mad that we take notice and our hearts sink in despair of the reality which we have created through our apathy and neglect. In the stark light of a cold dawn we realize that we left behind humanity in the fight for survival and knowing what was right was supplanted by justifiable rage, conclusions based on an inaccurate perception of an alternate reality generated by the constructs of our technology.
Did we lose our minds collectively or was it a slow decent along the dark winding path that became so narrow we could not turn and find our way back? The walls closing in that gave us security in the confines of our mind’s landscape a fantastical reckoning of our imaginings. We closed our ears to the droning of the warning bell, a communal cry of discontent somehow silenced in the endless night of wandering.
Endless sacrifice for another is not the answer, self-gratification to the exclusion of our connected bond in humanity leads again to a path of unsustainability. Today our faces are two-dimensionally projected through a stream of endless electrons but the softness of voice, the warm tear upon a cheek and the muted cry from the heart are hollow upon my screen. In a false show of compassion we connect but it is measured in the milli-second and the universe the lightyear how do we normalize this disparity.
In a moment the impossible was, the improbable became the statistical reality and I stood amongst you and found my tears reflected in the endless faces of a sea of humanity that must find its way in their shared reality. And with renewed wonder, a sense that to “know” is a very personal expression of an incomplete equation and that maybe its final expression should be played on a larger stage, accompanied by a choir of universal anomalies and manifest through the light of hope in our shared destinies.
It is a reconciliation of alternate realities that I seek, to understand how they coexist and share the same spacetime within the coordinates of my existence. Future an idealistic place which cannot share my present but I seek to decouple from the constraints of the amorphous society that binds them cruelly. My past obscured by the wall of blinding emotion; time the cleansing lens carried on the solar winds of change for tomorrow’s hopes are the very currents and eddies of entropy. Yet as I gaze into the future; the reflections of the waveforms colliding endlessly, and in it for just a moment I see… the reality… as it is engulfed by the stardust of eternity.

©JFK