You Can Fix What Needs Fixing and Create What Needs Creating

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Hi Friends!

 

You have a way to unstick what’s stuck, unblock what’s blocked, fix what needs fixing and create what needs creating. You just need to practice this way a bit, every day, to make it yours.

 

We’re at a crossroads today, each of us, and all together. It has something to do with what we practice.

In our life, we’re at a crossroads of mindset. We can continue to build stress on top of stress. We want to achieve, we want progress, it’s part of being human. And for so long we’ve followed a myth to get us there – call it no pain no gain, or no victory without battle – it’s a myth that says “If I’m not suffering, I won’t get anywhere good.”

It’s also part of being human to look for confirming evidence, that this is the right strategy. After all, why would I have been so hard on myself, for so long, if it wasn’t absolutely what I need for me, for my family, for everything to go right? Why would I have been this way for so long if it was actually inhibiting my potential, making me age faster, and harming my health? Why would we all be this way, if it was harming the world?

There’s something else we know, at this crossroads. We know something is not quite right here. And the science has caught up with what we suspect. Our stress and survival responses – which release cortisol and endorphins into our system – are designed to mask pain and even create a feeling of euphoria, so we can escape an immediate attack. They were meant to help us survive, not to live. But we’re living now under attack.

We’ve become addicted to suffering on a chemical level, and we put it in everything we do, even our health practices. This is producing nearly every health problem that Western medicine struggles with today: obesity and digestive disorders, weakened immunity and chronic pain, depression and anxiety, even diseases like cancer and Alzheimer’s.

 

Because we know, we have a choice. We can choose to move in a very different way, that creates a very different life, and a very different world.

 

We can choose to release the stress and tension from our minds, our bodies, and our lives, that inhibits us, weighs us down in every step we take. By choosing this, we can literally rewire our neurology, our chromosomes, and our gene expression, to perform at a higher level than we ever dreamed possible. By choosing this, we can rewire this world to perform at a higher level than we ever dreamed possible.

We’re also at a crossroads in our yoga, our tai chi, the practices we choose to elevate our health, our fitness, and our lives. It’s why we’re here together now. When I first started yoga about 20 years ago, the yoga studio was so often a hiding place for people, when life wasn’t working. And over the years, it has equally become a place to stress more, tense more, and push harder for our endpoints and agendas – the poses and goals of our lives.

Tai chi is the same. I began learning traditional Chinese and Japanese practices for movement and healing more than 30 years ago. I was lucky. In the first 10 years I learned about me, how my mind works, how my body works. When we arrived much later at forms and techniques, they could arise naturally from me, for me. So my discovery of these systems had something in common with their origins, hundreds and in some cases thousands of years ago. It happened naturally, from inside, as a discovery of who I am.

But this isn’t so much of tai chi today. The fellow I practice with is now in his late 80s, wonderfully more adept than he was in his 60s. This is one of the things I truly love about arts like tai chi, and why we designed Strala the way we did. He still goes to the occasional conference and competition, and comes back with stories. Tai chi is now not tai chi. It is tai-chi-like-exercises, an external practice of studying and copying the details of someone else’s form. There’s no internal discovery here, no independent arising of form out of your own nature. And the result is the same as with yoga. Something elegant and sophisticated in its simplicity has been made complex and unnatural. We all become less adept in our minds, and our bodies, through this practice. Always looking over our shoulder at what someone else is doing, what someone else believes is correct for us.

 

All of our practices can be hiding from life, or a way of recreating it. They can be pushing even harder, or learning a different way to navigate through our lives. Our path can be rigidly dictated to us, or it can be discovered naturally in each one of us. Who we are, and what shape we can take in our bodies and lives, is entirely up to us.

 

The science supports what we’ve suspected. As mind-body medicine pioneer Dr. Deepak Chopra puts it, “We’re not nouns, we’re verbs.” We aren’t fixed beings, stuck where we are, unchangeable. We’re move like a river, not hardwired but softwired. We know that rigidity is both cause and symptom of mental illness. When this rigidity arises in yoga – holding and moving with tension in both our minds and bodies – this isn’t a yoga that’s very useful. We’ve only taken the most common symptoms of human neurosis, and put them into our health and healing practice. This isn’t a problem with yoga. It’s a human problem. And we have a choice here. We can choose something different.

How we move – with tension or without, with force and aggression or grace and coordination – rewires our neurology and rebalances our microbiome every single day. It can change our gene expression, make our chromosomes healthier, and even alter what we pass along to our children. We create our lives, our health, and our world, in this way.

 

It matters deeply, the choices we make. It matters first to ourselves – how we choose to take care of ourselves, and move in our lives. This is the beginning of everything. It matters to the people we care for – how we are able to support each other, what we are able to give. And it matters to the whole world. Because this is what we create. And this crossroads is a choice we each make, every day.

About Strala Yoga Training

Strala combines the movement and healing wisdom of tai chi with the form vocabularies of yoga, tai chi, qigong, and Traditional Chinese and Japanese Medicine, to help people release stress, move easily through challenge, and live radiantly inspiring lives.

It begins with a mindset, that says our best way to get where we’re going is to feel good along the way. It also works miracles for whole health, helping us to find ease in our bodies and minds, and create the right conditions both for healing and optimal performance.

In our Strala Yoga Training Courses, you learn to shape your destiny on every level that counts, from your psychology, chemistry and neurology, to your chromosomes and even gene expression. The unique set of skills you develop – for connecting with yourself and others, unblocking your energy, healing what needs healing and accomplishing challenge with ease – uncovers your ability to create the life you want, and be an inspiring leader to the people around you.

Who’s What’s and When’s of Strala Yoga Training

 

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Finding the right distance. It’s a practice we can feel out and adjust in every moment. Cool thing is when you create a good relationship with yourself, finding the right relationship with others becomes a joy.From @stralayoga training in Berlin a couple years back. We are hoping to be there with a nice group next summer celebrating finding the right relationship.#stralayoga #shiatsu #yogateachertraining #taichi
When we soften, much more becomes possible. #stralayoga #taichi #shiatsu
It’s so easy to stick to habits that are familiar, even when they are destructive. We all have our reasons, our armor and our guard up to protect ourselves against whatever specific formula triggers us. We are afraid if we are more gentle with ourselves, we won’t be braced to defend ourselves, but the opposite is true. Moving like you love yourself in yoga and life is a choice to create a new, lasting habit, a way of being truly you.Tai Chi, nature, science, and the wisdom of your Great Grandmother, remind us when you go to war with yourself, you lose. When you move with whole self harmony towards progress, treating every bad habit you find along the way as a gold mind opportunity to move toward balance, you feel better, your body works better and you have access to more of yourself. You have a chance to do some good.I move like I love myself. It can start with an idea, a mantra, a practice, a way of being. If you choose to let it make a home in you, you will have gone to peace with yourself. Anything is possible.Pic by @jes.lock & @arslanstype @sundanceresort for Rest & Renew Training & Retreat#connection #selflove #wellbeing #stralayoga #taichi
Giveaway Time 🎁📚Long time @stralayoga friend @rainesfordstauffer a bright star for good, has written a beautiful new book An Ordinary Age.It’s so great to see so many great reviews and impactful media coverage for such a fantastic young person and topic. We’re giving away (buying and sending as a gift from me to you) three copies. (3 copies from @stralayoga account and 3 also from @tarastilesTo enter:
Comment on what you are doing for self care today.
Tag 2 friends who you want to feel better.
Follow @rainesfordstauffer @stralayoga & @tarastiles so 6 copies in total)Take good care.We’ll announce 3 winners in our story on Monday May 17.#selfcare #rainesfordstauffer #anordinaryage #giveaway #bookstagram
We share the relationship we are already having with ourselves. Self care isn’t selfish, it’s necessary and takes the pressure off of trying to fix everyone & everything.@bibinsb & @lexluca are great examples ♥️Great memory from a great group in Amsterdam. #stralayoga #connection #selfcare #shiatsu
Fun one 👋Why do you practice ease? To feel better, to be able to enjoy more, serve more, to have enough energy to run around with the little ones in your life or something else? Pic by @inaraa_yoga before class in Berlin.Let us know in the comments.
Every  breath is an opportunity to feel better.
I create calm. When I choose to center myself, I create calm for me and the world around me.Welcome May, welcome our monthly theme, welcome our practice calendar, welcome calm. #stralayoga #createcalm
The mute button. 🤫An easy DIY #shiatsu to practice with yourself or with a partner. This #tsubo (entry point to a #meridian highway) has a way of calming an overactive mind. We named it the mute button in #stralayoga for a reason 😉Where
Below the big toe bone and a little in toward the center of the 🦶How
Press your thumb into this place as you lean in and away from the center of yourself or your partner.Now what
Soften yourself, breathe deep and make sure you are moveable. Hang here a bit without trying to make anything happen. Just chillNow what
Lean away from your partner to disconnect. Give them a bit of time to relax and maybe ask for some feedback.Don’t forget
Ask your partner for your turn 🙌
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