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  “Serenity is not freedom from the storm but peace amid the storm.” ~ author unknown Many of us attend a yoga class to feel calm, release stress and experience inner peace. By the end of our practice we walk away, feeling "...aaahhh..." But what happens after our yoga and meditation practice? Does the stress return when we are stuck in traffic, at work or when dealing with a difficult person or situation? How can we maintain inner serenity amid the chaos?   Here are a few ways to understand what causes disturbance to our serene state of being and ways we can practice bringing more serenity to our daily lives. You may wish to take one week to explore each of these different self-study techniques.   1. The Environment: Throughout the day, notice which environments you feel serene and which environments cause tension and stress. Once we have a sense of how the outer world affects our inner state, we can consciously use the serene environments to [...]

By | 2015-01-15T22:12:54+00:00 January 15th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Review the Day – in depth…

In the last post, the practice of "Review the Day" meditation was introduced. With this foundation, we can begin to explore the potential and depth of this meditation. Many of us go to bed still holding onto the worries, stress, anxiety, anger, frustration or sadness of the day, which can affect our health, well-being and quality of sleep. Below are ways to deepen your "Review the Day" meditation practice over the next nine weeks.   Week One ~ The Positive: Direct the focus of your practice to highlight the following: 1. What did you do well today? 2. What positive insights and realizations did you have today?   Week Two ~ The Difficulties: 1. What events, situations or times did you encounter stress, aggression or fear? 2. Is there a way to better manage or channel the response or reaction in a healthier way?   Week Three ~ The Changes: Highlight those times when you consciously changed your behavior to better manage and respond to stress, aggression and [...]

By | 2014-12-18T15:19:17+00:00 December 18th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Review the Day Meditation

An introduction... Many of us go to bed still holding onto the worries, stress, anxiety, anger, frustration or sadness of the day. This can lead to an inability to fall asleep, stay asleep and wake up tired. The "Review the Day" meditation is a practice to consciously release tensions and negative emotions so we can have a restful night's sleep. The practice: Each night before going to bed, spend 5-10 minutes to review your day. *You can even practice this lying down in bed, just as you're getting ready for sleep. Be the impartial witness (without judgement) and mentally recall events from the moment you woke up until you began the "Review the Day" meditation. Just observe your day without playing out the story or inner dialogue. In the next blog post, additional components of this meditation will be offered.   Hari Om Tat Sat   © Copyright 2014 – All Elements Yoga – Gail Seckrettar

By | 2014-10-16T01:03:39+00:00 October 16th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Affirmations on the Chakras

  In April and May, AEY classes and challenges of the week were focused on affirmations on the different chakras (vortices of psychic energy) for self-healing.   The chakra affirmations are evolutionary intentions to cultivate the positive qualities of these psychic energy centers and bring balance between head (thinking), heart (intentions) and hands (actions).   Each intention should be mentally repeated with strength,  commitment and pure intention.   We begin with the first chakra, Mooladhara (Mool la dar), and set affirmations around feeling safe and secure. Take a few minutes to sit quietly and mentally repeat: 1. I feel safe and grounded 2. My needs are met and supported 3. I honor my body and trust its wisdom   We continue to the second chakra, Swadisthana (Swa dis than), and set affirmations regarding desires and feelings. Take a few minutes to sit quietly and mentally repeat: 1. My life is pleasurable 2. My desires are fulfilled 3. I connect to and learn from my feelings   We focus next [...]

By | 2014-05-30T14:24:58+00:00 May 30th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

An Introduction to the Chakras

  The word chakra (chh aak rah) is translated as 'wheel' or 'vortice' and refers to psychic energy. While there are many chakras, the focus of this post will be on the seven main energy centers. These seven chakras are located between the pelvic floor and the crown of the head. These energy centers can influence our actions, thoughts, behaviors and relationships. While the scope and magnitude of the chakras is expansive, this blog post offers a basic starting ground to recognize the influence of these vortices of energy in our daily life.   Mooladhara Chakra (Mool la dar) We begin mooladhara, the first chakra in the Satyananda tradition, located in the area of the perineum. As this is the energy center where one is almost totally concerned with obtaining personal security, take time to notice thoughts, actions and how much time and energy is spent and directed towards attaining security in the world.   Swadisthana Chakra (Swa dis than) We continue to swadisthana, the second chakra in [...]

By | 2014-05-09T11:36:47+00:00 May 9th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Managing Energy

    Everything that exists is a manifestation of energy. How we use or misuse this energy can have positive or negative influences on our health and well-being.     Once we are aware of the different influences (physical and mental) on our energy, we can consciously control this energy to enhance vitality, will-power, strength and health.       The Environment Take time to notice any influence of different environments on your energy levels. Perhaps how a crowded supermarket compares with a solitary walk in nature. Which environments positively or negatively affect physical or mental energy?     Times of Day Are there certain times of day when you feel tired and other times of day when you feel more energized? When we have an awareness of our energy levels throughout the day, we can choose tasks and activities that best support our natural body rhythm.     The Breath How we breathe has an influence on our energy levels. Which parts of your body move with [...]

By | 2014-03-28T18:10:33+00:00 March 28th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

SWAN Meditation Part Three

  Our SWAN meditation continues, with further guidance. SWAN is an acronym for: Strengths, Weaknesses, Ambitions and Needs and is a meditation practice to help us understand and accept ourselves. Need to catch up? See the AEY blog entries below for previous entries on SWAN Meditation.     Week 1: Highlight Strengths Write down all strengths you've noticed in previous months and display this list in a place where you can see it daily. This list is a reminder of your positive qualities and will encourage you in your SWAN practice. You will gain more strength each time you look at them.   Week 2: Highlight One Weakness Choose one weakness to eliminate and, using your strengths and your sankalpa (statement of positive affirmation), work towards overcoming that weakness. When that weakness is eliminated, chose another.   Week 3: Patterns of Thought What patterns of thought have you noticed since practicing SWAN? Are these thought patterns different from strengths to weaknesses? Ambitions to needs? Have these patterns of [...]

By | 2014-03-07T18:01:24+00:00 March 7th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

SWAN Meditation In-depth…

In the previous blog post, the practice of SWAN meditation was introduced. SWAN is an acronym for: Strengths, Weaknesses, Ambitions and Needs and is a meditation practice to help us understand and accept ourselves.   Now that we have identified our Strengths, Weaknesses, Ambitions and Needs, we can explore SWAN in-depth for clarity and understanding in managing the mind.   Week 1: Strengths In-depth Review each strength and consider the following questions: How do I know I have this strength? Which are part of my genetic makeup and which have I developed? Which are real and which are wishful thinking? Which strengths can I use to overcome my weaknesses and support my ambitions?     Week 2: Weaknesses In-depth Review each weakness and consider these questions: Which weaknesses can I turn into strengths or use in a positive way? For example, stubbornness can be seen as persistence or tenacity and channeled positively? Which strengths can I use to overcome a specific weakness? Can I accept my weaknesses?   [...]

By | 2014-01-20T01:21:19+00:00 January 20th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

SWAN Meditation

An introduction... Along with the practice of asana (body postures), pranayama (energy based breathing practices) and Yoga Nidra (guided relaxation meditation), there is another aspect to develop towards our higher evolutionary growth. SWAN meditation is a practice of self-study, evolved by Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati, to assist in managing our minds, understanding and developing our personality and giving us clear direction in life.   SWAN is an acronym for: Strengths, Weaknesses, Ambitions and Needs and can help us understand our own nature and to accept ourselves.   Week 1: Identify Strengths Strengths are qualities, skills, talents and characteristics that support and help us to evolve. Strengths can be applied positively and constructively in life.   Week 2: Identify Weaknesses Weaknesses are deficiencies in our personality and attributes of our character that hinder our progress or growth (ex: apathy, anger, procrastination). Most of the time we are influenced by and try to hide our weaknesses. Overly focusing on weaknesses overshadows our strengths. When listing weaknesses, be sure they do not [...]

By | 2013-12-04T20:54:14+00:00 December 4th, 2013|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Awakening Abundance

  "Acknowledging the good you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance." ~Eckhart Tolle     Abundance often means different things to different people. To one person, it can mean material wealth (money, objects) and to another, spiritual wealth (joy, health, peace).   As we look at abundance with mindful awareness, we may experience obstacles (limiting beliefs, limited thinking, worthiness) that prevent us from receiving the abundance we wish for. In this 8-week process, we learn to transform obstacles into opportunities, and prepare ourselves to receive abundance. Week 1: Notice Abundance Witness examples of abundance around you. Take a few moments to reflect on the abundance that already exists in your life. Week 2: Set a Sankalpa Ask yourself what you need more of in your life. Then, create a positive intention (sankalpa) around the abundance you wish to receive. Formulate your sankalpa in the positive present tense, in 8 words or less. Mentally or verbally repeat it throughout the day. In this way, [...]

By | 2013-10-03T14:21:19+00:00 October 3rd, 2013|Uncategorized|0 Comments