yoga does not care if you like it.

Yoga does not care if you like it. Yoga is connection. It’s intended to get you to feel yourself. To breathe. To dig into yourself. To examine and challenge every bit of you that comes up. It’s to move you to connect to your deepest, highest, pleasurable, lovable, sometimes seemingly unlovable parts, and beautiful self. When you go here, all the white noise fades. When you go in and say, “this is me, this is who I am today, and I love every bit.” – that is the ultimate connection. To love yourself is not arrogant, it’s necessary. And it’s the most loving act of all and sometimes it surprises me to think of it as a revolution. Love is our natural state. Return to it and you return to yourself.
I used to live in a way to “be good” as if there was a gold star chart of deeds, accomplishments, superficial exchanges, to eat right, don’t do this or that, restrict here, be perfect there, cue this, imitate, separate, and initiate from a place of others.
I had to stop. It vacuumed the “me” out of nearly everything. I was pulled by others; their experience and knowledge created a pedestal relationship. I seeking them/it as the end all - be all in the how-to of life, yoga, teaching, practicing, motherhood, as a creative, and relating to this world. I was so wrapped up in trying to be good, when I really just needed to be me. I had to call back my spirit, my inner teacher. My love. This love. This seeker within. I took back myself, my power, and understood that my highest self uncovers and unlocks and un-tethers herself from anything and everything that forms itself from a place of good from bad or right from wrong. No longer measuring myself to the graphs of imaginary goodness on a scale of commandments that are broken everyday. 
Discover yourself and your zest in everything you do and you’ll be free. This is your connection to yourself. It’s not to be liked or manipulated or seeking pedestals of people or relationships, it’s not to drive you from a place of gold stars or markings in your to-dos. You are your greatest teacher, your greatest power, and your greatest love. Feel-trust-know-love yourself.

stephynow

go inside. go the fuck inside.

your only choice in life is to feel. how long will you run? how long can you hide? when do you stop blaming? when does responsibility step in? are you here to pretend or are you here to get real? be real. it's the feeling-body that shows us to get really-real. fuck that fake shit. 
Go inside.
The moment you begin to judge someone, go inside.
The moment you want to blame someone, go inside.
The moment you want to react toward someone, go inside.
The moment you want to give the stink eye, huff, growl, hair flip, whatever-have-you, go inside.
The moment you begin to feel some density with someone - pissed off, angry, low, flustered, whatever it is, go the fuck inside.
And realize this. 
Your reaction to anyone, anything - especially when it starts to drive a force of judgment, blame, competition, jealousy, anger, or anything that leaves you in a hot, heady, heated space - go inside. This is information. It is tapping you on the shoulder saying, “hey, there is something going on that you need to take a look at.” Life is requesting your attention to notice your thoughts, your patterns, your beliefs, your behaviors, your actions and what you need to dig into - for yourself.
So often we want to blame others or find safety in victim-hood. So often we prefer to numb our ways. The moment we begin to feel, is the moment we want to bow out. It takes place on the yoga mat as much as it takes place in our life. The body wants to move through the heavy shit. It’s the mind, the ego, that wants to knit such heaviness to banter this life and our relationships. When you really go inside with yourself, especially on the mat, you’ll have no choice but to feel. We numb so much in our lives, especially pain. When we numb pain, we numb everything else. You cannot ignore one part of your life, without ignoring all of your life. It is all connected, supported, and woven. 
Often times I will tell students to feel it out, let stuff come up, get shaky, sit in the uncomfortable, feel what is real. If you’re smiling through it, awesome. If you’re hating through it, awesome. If you want to curse at me, I can take it. Because what is true is that everything you feel and all the gooey stuff that comes up has absolutely nothing to do with me (or others). The goal is to feel. My job, as a teacher, is to help you get there and simply guide you to go inside.

 

stephynow