When Kate was 3 years old she became afraid of monsters in her room. A popular problem for this age, we reassured her. We did regular checks at bedtime investigating potential monster hiding places. Her space was always clear, but her mind was in fear! Looking for ways to keep the monsters away, we adorned her wrists with monster repellent bracelets. It worked! She wore them all the time and it re-framed her mindset. She was safe!

Recently, I found myself fearing monsters - Social Media monsters! I’ve spent the last decade plus trying to get kids and parents off their devices, now Covid has made that impossible. Prior to the pandemic, we had three major problems posting about It’s Yoga Kids.

  1. Yoga is not the place for your phone. It’s a time to unplug and BE with your child. This was so challenging because what happens in every class is Beyond Cute and so worthy of capturing and celebrating publicly.
  2. Privacy. We can’t be posting all the Yoga cuteness without parent permission so we needed to rely on parents tagging @itsyogakids in posts that were relevant to us.
  3. My resistance! This was the biggest obstacle. I don’t know how to self-promote. I’ve never had to. As an elite performer with large audiences and as a top sales professional, my output was always recognized. I couldn’t escape it! Now, I have to toot our own horn? Uncomfortable!

We’ve never spent a dollar on advertising. Our community always shared their experience with great reviews organically and that’s the way I liked it. But that’s not enough. In order to fulfill our mission of access to Yoga for Every Child we need a bigger megaphone and social media provides that. So instead of monster repellent bracelets, I’m hugging this technology monster and reframing the fear of putting myself out there as a way to elevate our important work.

More than ever, kids need physical, mental and emotional Agility. Facing fears including anxiety which can range from mild nerves to debilitating is critical as we enter a whole new world post Covid. Yoga can help! We find our edge, stop and breathe into it and transform it. We learn this skill on the mat and then we apply it to everyday life. It takes practice!

What are your monsters? Tell us all about it!

A growing body of research shows the heart bows to the brain in intelligence. We do Yoga unite our body, mind and heart. We make the connection first in ourselves and then in the world around us. This is a persistent thread in our work with families, kids, teens. At the end of yoga we bow to our hearts in Namsaste, our way of saying goodbye and thank you.

When I think of operating from the the heart, I think of the work that people do in the world. Their contribution that comes from their passion. We received a wonderful series of books as gifts this holiday season from Gramma: Stephen Curry, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Greta Thunberg. These are individuals who do what they do for their hearts and for the hearts of others and the Earth. Thank you. We bow to them.

What can we do for the world? Live form our hearts. Honor the hearts of others. Respect and care for the Earth. Climate change is real and preventable. Here’s what you can do to help the planet and make a difference for our children. A few surprises here like fix your house and of course, make Valentine’s cards!

Nearly everyone I know was mentally, physically and emotionally ready to end 2020. We welcomed 2021 with hopes and excitement releasing that which no longer serves us. There was an energetic shift, and then we woke up to the same reality with Covid cases on the rise and stay at home orders in place. On day 6, things went sideways with the storming of the Capitol by an angry mob. Distraught and in disbelief, I wanted a 7-day money back guarantee on 2021.

That day was enough for many to stop following the path of an autocrat. That day took far too long to arrive for those who saw it coming the day Donald Trump was nominated, or as some now believe, hi-jacked the Republican party. It’s up to each individual to find their own tipping point - when they fall or choose another side. It’s often frustrating to watch and wait. Yet everyone is entitled to their own opinions, stories, choices and consequences. When is enough enough?

What’s this have to do with Yoga? There is a tipping point on the mat too. Every pose is designed to help find your edge, to feel it; it’s usually challenging. People often push, pull, grip or hold on with clenched teeth. That creates strain. To find flow, we must breathe, allow and be patient. Sometimes we find the edge, tip and fall. When that happens, we get back up. That’s what happened that Wednesday when the insurrection was cleared, we found our edge and democracy continued.

In order to grow, finding your personal edge is what matters whether you’re on the mat or moving through life. How do we stop and breathe through resistance? How can we build strength, flexibility and balance in our bodies, minds and hearts? That’s why we do Yoga. It’s an art and a science that helps each of us define ourselves and build skills to manage our edges and our tipping points.

It’s the last day of 2020. Finally. What. A. Year! A year of loss. A year of discovery. Each of us has experienced loss and suffering in one way or another. Deaths from Covid are both literal and figurative. The loss if a loved one, the loss of a job or business, the loss of freedom as we’ve known it. Disappointment has been a primary emotion.

According to The Psychology of Disappointment, disappointment is an emotion that exists when an outcome does not meet expectations. The greater the disparity, the greater the upset. Disappointment over-time is stressful. That was 2020, over and over again. It pressed us.

It was also a year of discovery. Discovering what matters and what doesn’t. Family matters. Many kids and families enjoyed time together like never before. Physical and mental health matters. Many kids and families navigated challenges with the help of new skills. Skills like adaptability that Yoga teaches us on the mat and transfers to life off the mat.

As we enter the hope of 2021 with the existing circumstances that end 2020, adaptability will be required. Keep doing Yoga. Keep showing up for yourself and the ones you love.

Oh, ho, no! This holiday season is quite different than ANY other! We wish you and your family well as Covid cases are at an all-time high. The suffering for many this year is staggering. We all seem to all be in a required process of holding on and letting go - and then some. We have found time to laugh.

We laughed with San Francisco Bay Area Moms and participated in the 2020 Holiday Extravaganza: Featuring 12 Virtual Events and Giveaways. We also had so much fun at IYK Online Mondays with the Kids who helped us transform our yoga class into winter and holiday poses from Candy Canes to Snowflakes, Santa’s Sleigh and Candle pose, we use our creativity and laughed all the way to our resting pose (Savasana).

We meditated peacefully and we wished for peace. Peace from this virus. Peace in our households. Peace in our communities. Peace in our nation. We wished on a Star - the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn on the day of Winter Solstice. Happy. Merry. All the way.

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