Do you remember on December 31st and January 1st when everyone was all “my word of the year is ________”? I do. I was in a perpetual state of scoffing. I think I rolled my eyes for a whole week. (you had/have one? keep reading, keep reading. I promise I’m not an asshole) The whole time I thought why are you assigning a word to how you want to live your life? Just do it. That is until the theme of be authentic kept coming up in my actions and my thoughts and the advice I was doling out.
I’m doing me. (thanks Drake)
How does this relate?
Through being an I’m Fit Possible Ambassador I had the opportunity to read Lacey Haynes’ yoga + creativity; an e-book that explores the relationship between a series of yoga poses and a creative process, each with a governing energy, intention, and chakra.
A what? It’s ok fellow beginner yoga-folk, I had no idea either but Lacey explains it all with real people words and provides details on how it all makes sense together. (which, thanks!) There are also explanations and photos of every pose!
There are three paths: 4 week intensive, here & there, and full day retreat. I chose here & there because it felt intuitive – I liked being able to choose when to dedicate time to my practice and explore the creative ques when I really wanted to.
Embracing yoga + creativity you will: dive into who you are, face fears and limits, be curious and available, be open to surprise, let go of worries and doubts, practice again and again, treat yourself with love and kindness, accept who you are.
So back to being authentic – I love how Lacey lays this all out as a personal exploration. She probes you to think deeper, say what up to your soul, and be honest about your insecurities.
Sun salutations (oh heeeey crescent moon flow; p73) are kind of my favourite; I love the heart opening flow of bending and tucking and rising, stretching tall, and a good back bend. I love how this is a metaphor for letting love in – something I wish I was better at. So this really stuck with me:
when the mind lets go and the heart is open and ready to give and receive, then true creativity can flow freely
In a very non-negative way one of my mottos is low expectations. I feel like when we don’t place expectations on ourselves or others we can accept people for who they are and be more open to everything they have to offer. Personally, this is where I can see my creativity blossom as well; whether it be writing here or writing lacrosse articles or the responses I craft for persnickety clients or cards I create in my free time or what I choose to slap gold paint and glitter on. I wanted to snuggle Lacey when she wrote:
when expectations slip away then there’s room for surprise
Back to being authentic again – I know myself pretty well. I have a lot of insecurities and am fairly uncomfortable in my own skin sometimes. I appreciated that Lacey highlights that part of this exploration will include facing fears and smashing them by just doing what makes you uncomfortable and then repeating it over and over again to slowly make it not so uncomfortable. But honestly, I just couldn’t. I will sing in the car till my voice is hoarse but I can’t sing alone in my living room. I tried Lacey, I tried. I just can’t.
The biggest impact:
I really like how the idea of creativity was a result of being open and honest with yourself. That creativity doesn’t mean being an expert painter or dancer; it’s just however you choose to express yourself.
Like I mentioned right at the very beginning, I’m not good at living a pre-determined life but adopt what feels right to me. I’m not good at traditional meditation or shavasana because I’m supposed to silent, be still, and let my mind be blank; which inevitably means I think about my to-do list, what’s for dinner, the work I need to do, or what’s on tv that night. Instead, as I get ready for bed I put on my “one slow dance” playlist, brush my teeth, put on my jammies, turn off the lights, and let the music relax me. To last night’s soundtrack of Van Morrison, Ryan Adams, The Weepies, Dave Thomas Jr, Fort Atlantic, Jason Mraz, Eric Clapton, and Matt Nathanson I thought about what I was thankful for. I said a little prayer to keep everyone I love safe. I breathed deeply. I smiled remembering a conversation I had with my sister and ignored the chime of an email. I stretched and opened my heart.
Exploring all avenues of her creativity, Lacey writes, acts, sings, and draws. A trained actor, she’s been on stage and screen in Germany and Canada; she also studied English Literature, and as an MA student currently blogs for the Huffington Post and runs The Yoga Emporium.
Above all, Lacey loves spreading the path of yoga and helping people to uncover their own innate happiness, love, and creative energy.
Love it? Sound cool? Want a copy of the yoga + creativity ebook for yourself?
Leave a comment on why you’d love to win a copy. really, really, really wanna win? click here for extra entries (giveaway closes 11:59pm EST on Friday, May 23rd – winner will be randomly chosen and emailed)
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