As I sit here typing, I am at the tail-end of leading (& partaking) in a Fall Yoga Detox 3-week series. I am not a rookie at seasonal detoxes but this time it seemed different. Not seemed different – it was different. I didn’t feel hungry or deprived as some of you may think pertains to a detox (ok, there was one emotional day where I really wanted a glass of wine), but I realize that was only because I wanted to be comforted. That want was fleeting because I found the comfort elsewhere.
I was comforted in the realization that I am my own best friend.
Big bold realization, right?! How about you? Do you feel all comfy cozy at home with your true self? If not, where are you seeking the external comfort?
When you cleanse out all the “false sense of security junk”, you can see clearly through the door. The door that reveals the light of your soul’s truth & in that place there will be no turning back.
Because you will realize this is the happiest of all places.
If you have been feeling the desire lately to rid your life of unwanted, mind cluttering toxins, and to step into your true joy, maybe you picked up on some of our collective energetic vibrations. For when one person does the work to heal & become their radical self, that energy helps everyone step into their unique truth.
My unique freak flag is up in the air, what about you?
Little BONUS: I’m happy to share a fun yoga detox music playlist with all of you. It is more than fun. It is powerful! Each woman who participated in the yoga detox shared a favorite song which is the compilation of the yoga playlist below. It is their way of flying their unique flag…enjoy!
Knowing – Lucinda Williams
Dream – Priscilla Ahn
Magic – Coldplay
Listen to the Lion – Van Morrison
Gimme Shelter – The Rolling Stones
A Case of You – Joni Mitchell
Fool In the Rain – Led Zeppelin
Night Moves – Bob Seger
Every Rose Has It’s Thorn – Poison
You Are for Me – Kari Jobe
The Story – Brandi Carlisle
By the Grace of God – Katy Perry
(Everything I Do) I Do for You – Bryan Adams
Hey Jude – The Beattles
1000 years – Christina Perri
How Can I Keep From Singing – Enya
Put a Little Love in Your Heart – Mary Mary
Keep the music rolling and feel free to reply to this blog with your favorite song. Your unique addition will help the authentic collective conscious flow.
Until our unique journey paths cross again,
It is Wednesday, September 23rd and the Fall Equinox is upon us. The sun revved up his power to shine directly on the equator making the length of day & night equal…or almost equal.
The importance of both light & dark is brought into our awareness this time of year. But who likes to go into the dark?
As a kid, my parents often found me sleeping in my closet with a blankie over my head as I had snuck into the sweet darkness of quiet alone time. Fast forward into my adulthood, and I still curl up with a blankie (uh hum; I mean blanket) in the dark as I watch a drama filled movie on Netflix. And sans blanket, I cruise around the halls of my home navigating the darkness…driving my boyfriend a wee bit crazy as he would prefer lights a blazing.
As a yoga teacher & spiritual guide, I use my gifts naturally to help people realize the beauty of their light.
To truly know your light of truth; it helps to embrace your dark side. For when we go into the darkness, we are not blinded by the light and rather we sit in our own truth of what needs to be cleansed and balanced so we can heal and evolve.
We must bring our light to the darkness.
And just because nature likes to help out when she can, after today the days get shorter so you have plenty of opportunities to embrace the darkness. Feel free to turn off the lights in your home or sneak out into the cool nights and soak up the stars and moon. Don’t they shine so much brighter when the sky is pitch black or is it because you are bringing your light to the darkness?
As you take on a new appreciation of darkness, you may just find the images of Fall’s colorful trees, pumpkins, & the taste of apple cider to be that much brighter & sweeter this year.
Until our paths cross again ~
Do you know how to relax? I mean really relax. Shutting it ALL off and letting the worries, fears, and doubts completely leave the building.
If you are reading this, I am sure you are on the path (or are very interested) in bringing the path of relaxation into your life. And kudos to you because it is a really BIG deal to bring utter serenity into moments of your day because if you don’t … well let’s just say the brain takes major ‘blows’ when we keep it in perpetual analyze & do mode.
A quick overview of the brain:
Left side is the control master of analytical reasoning & is very reality based.
Right side of the brain is master of creativity ~ the place of imagination, dreams, & intuition.
Ok, I said quick overview so now onto how easily we can destroy our precious brain with only our thoughts.
When we dive into the old song and dance of negative thoughts perpetuated by imagining the worst case scenarios happening in our life; worries, fears, and doubts shut down part of our brain. In essence, we lose our awareness or consciousness. Hmmm–do you ever find yourself saying “I can’t remember this or that?” Well, maybe you are shutting down the old thinker by worrying too much. Just a thought – pun intended.
Well, I wish a poor memory was the only brainy thing that could go wrong. But, because our body steps up and produces oober amounts of cortisol with all our negative thoughts we can actually ‘blow up’ neurons. Yes, our sweet body thinks we are in distress and thus steps up to the plate and makes cortisol to combat the stress. Excess cortisol is the killer.
Your Brain on Stress.
I watched a video demonstrating the destruction of our precious brain cells due to high levels of cortisol (sorry video wasn’t available for upload) but let me describe what went down. Envision a mass of neurons and their dangling arms of synapses lit up like Christmas trees (similar to our cool braintree picture above). Looks all pretty and then…bam…or kaboom is better to capture the moment. A neuron exploded. Gone forever!
Maybe you remember the old commercial scaring us away from using drugs “this is your brain on drugs”.
This may need a little edit to include ” this is your brain on stress”.
Never fear. Put the frying pan away.
Yoga Brain to the rescue!
Go ahead and insert a new visual. It is the end of yoga class and you feel completely relaxed. You slide into the bliss of savasana (the pose of complete relaxation) and your happy brain takes over. It starts to activate parts of your brain ~ igniting creativity & dreams, & fantasies; igniting our intuitive nature. This happens because instead of stress protecting cortisol being produced our bodies begin to release dopamine; our pleasure neurochemicals. ahhh….
You may think that based on your busy life that you need to have the left analytical side of your brain on high 24/7. But, introducing relaxation will activate the “right” and help you make decisions using the wisdom of your intuition. And this is why I highly recommend that you wait to balance the checkbook for at least 20 minutes after yoga class. Let the fantasies and daydreams guide you and enjoy the sweet bliss of Yoga Brain.
Until our paths cross again,
I was living smack in the middle of the busy-business of Washington DC. The energetic buzz was palpable yet on one particular evening I was being comforted by my quiet fireplace lit condo in Dupont; soothed by the stillness of the night.
I felt grounded. I felt calm. I felt ready.
I had decided to take my 15 years of yoga practice & study up a notch and head to where the roots of yoga’s amazingness originated. India here I come! And like many major life decisions, I turned over my fate to Google to find the ideal training institute. Well, I didn’t completely let an inanimate piece of technology be my only magic worker. I also employed an intuitive tool I had been using to help me select web pages to click on. I used the energy I could feel in my hands as I scrolled through the myriad of selections and voila. There she was; The Sattvik Sedan.
I had no idea what”Sattvik” meant which was even further validation for me to learn more.
And here I am several years later sharing with you the blissful meaning of Sattvik. It means living in harmony with a dynamic stillness.
Sattvik is exactly what I needed to learn then and now.
Here is a huge life lesson pulled from the ancient teachings of Yoga (& Ayurveda) philosophy:
The happiest of all lives is a busy solitude. ~ Voltaire
Go ahead…enjoy the vibrant feeling of “getting things done”- be dynamic. But notice at the same moment busy-ness is happening so is stillness. When those two forces find a happy marriage; that is when radiant bliss comes out of hiding and smack into the middle of your life.
Here is powerful intention statement just for you: I choose to live in dynamic stillness.
Until our paths cross again. In love & light,
Not for the flexible?
When I see people on their yoga mats, they seem to be in all sorts of bendy poses. Their heads can reach places I hadn’t before thought of exploring and their backs twist into shapes that I had only seen at a Cirque du Soleil performance in Vegas. Yoga seems to only be about the flexible.
Those words are a flavorful version of conversations I’ve had over the years with people who are afraid of yoga. The list of fears is not limited to the misunderstanding of our bodies abilities, but an obligatory comment tends to be “I’m not flexible”. As a yoga teacher, I see fears as an opportunity to realize what part of our true nature is screaming to come out and play. So if you are one of the yoga-wanna-be-newbies that has tons of red fear flags waving — stiff non-flexible ‘ol body being one of them — here is what I lovingly share with you.
Yoga is not for the flexible. It is for the willing.
Go ahead. Roll out a yoga mat, breathe, move, and just show up. You may just have the best performance of your life —without the flashing lights of Las Vegas.
In love & light,
You alone are enough- you have nothing to prove to anybody. ~Maya Angelou
Four years ago I was sitting at an outdoor cafe with a friend in Washington DC sipping on red wine and talking about life. He casually asked “What is it you really want to do with all this passion you possess?”
I went on a wine and sun induced rant of how I wanted to help people access their power while also feeling peaceful. I had fought with myself for years; pushing my agenda and voicing my opinions and I had finally realized that the constant ‘in your face’ approach wasn’t necessary; and actually power limiting. In stillness and trusting in the moment is where I felt true power; that pure self knowing. Our chat ended with, “You know Phil, it is like getting a rush of adrenaline but also feeling zen embrace you at the same moment”. And thus my business name was realized: adrenazen.
I jumped in with both feet creating adrenazen classes that fused the grace and power of boxing with yoga. I know. I know. Really? Boxing and yoga? Well, it worked and the message was pervasive. There was a waiting list of students seeking this powerful zen experience. I was relishing in my own adrenaline and was taking less and less time for quiet zen Wendy moments; oh the irony.
But in one particular silent time, I remembered clearly a conversation with another yoga friend “Why are you trying so hard to build a brand? Wendy Billie is your brand.” I shrugged it off because I loved the cool business name. But I know now my friend was meant to say those words to me and thank goodness the voice within was loud enough so that when my graphic designer was creating my adrenazen logo I also had him create a Wendy Billie logo to compliment. I felt a tug in my heart saying one day I would shift to “Wendy Billie” my true essence and spirit. I would lead yoga healing retreats and seminars all over the world. And just as the universe is in a constant state of change and evolution, as am I. And now is the time to shift from just pure “yoga boxing” to my heart; a diverse wild eclectic nature loving peaceful spiritual being.
So for those who have been adrenazen followers, it is still me. It’s just that now I absorb in the brand that has always been with me. I use my given talents in ways to help people heal and step into their true authentic lives.
Do you find yourself pushing your agenda? Just maybe it is time to step back and see if you are flowing with YOU.
Namaste my dear friends and see you at wendybilli
International yoga instructor, Shamanic Practitioner, life coach, and more!