Beyond the benefit of self

What does YOUR voice say? What does YOUR heart say? What does YOUR belly say?
Close your eyes. Speak to this. Speak from this. The words that travel within your bones. The words that lift the hairs on the back of your neck. The words that bring chills, that sink in, the ones that escape your breath. Speak from your body. We have enough quotes from the belly of Buddha.
What do YOU have to say? Say that. Do more. Be an ally for others. Prettiness isn’t going to change the world. Go deeper than the face. Go deep into the pain. Do not look away. Rip-off quotes are much too quiet. Bare your heavy heart and be a witness to others.
Penetrate the superficial.
Make this a tag line or headline.
We are the influencers. Our influence must go beyond the benefit of self. We are the influence generation.
Act like it.
Use your voice. Use your art. Use your heart. #penetratethesuperficial

stephynow

practice is practice, tweaks and turns in trials and errors

The sneaky secret to binds: long limbs. A little yoga humor to swipe the seriousness off this Monday.
I’m a big fan of using props; straps, blocks, wheels, blankets, books, chairs, window-sills, etc. That’s the thing about a home practice, there’s endless exploration while rolling around on your living room floor. Incorporate what is useful and you’ll discover the tweaks and turns in trials and errors, you’ll feel the body as you let go of timing and cues, and this is where the greatest self-study exists.
I’ve discovered so much about myself by simply playing, exploring, and navigating my own body through breath and cycled postures. I fell in love with my practice when I combined my studio practice into my home. Both hold space in my heart for different reasons and teach me in different ways.
Practice is practice.

Lean in and love with your eyes closed.

stephynow

penetrate the superficial, first blood of realities

Masks see-through, armor penetrable.
We can go on pretending and hiding as though we stage ourselves like actors in a play. You and me this dance of we tip-toeing realities, juxtapose identities, revealing, and withdrawing. We are the few they want to gag and beat and mold as their own. We are the few quiet and tall. We are the few with the heart on the sleeve and complete on our knees. We are the few that love hard and deep with dead-eyed stares. We are the few with too many words, not enough hush. We are the few not tethered to the body of shame. We are the few that live naked and free. We are the few.
They call us bitches and whores and liars and schemers. Funny how puppetry creates victim. The tales behind my back have yet to meet my face. How cheap to talk of others instead of conversing the mirror. How easy it is to judge and pluck at the price others. You make it look easy. In your ease, you’ve hardened. Somewhere. Somehow. Afraid to love. Afraid to touch. Afraid to reveal. Afraid to be seen. I’ll not speak a word and take up battle. You keep your defenses as I strip mine down.
I do not collect praise or hold criticism. I do not seek what you say of me. I do not take aim. Fierce is my love, I’ll not cross or lessen myself in the comfort of your fear.
I am here to connect, not here to collect. Collections, so needy, you owe. Collections you tally to mask you as so. Collections a protection of armory. Collections never-ending.
The see-through mask, the penetrable armor. You have no choice but be seen. Among the few, among the many. These are the sharpened truths from my wet tongue. Penetrate the superficial, it’s the first blood of realities. It’s the dance, this dance of we. You and me.

stephynow

why you do anything is why you do everything

Give to give. The joy is in giving yourself. Your art, craft, voice, passion, pleasure, knowledge, story, love, presence and Soul. The more you give, the more you grow.
Everything is up for sale, it’s a price tag world; you can purchase likes, followings, and pay your way to validation. You can belittle others to feel tall or play bullshit power games. This is the demand of the ego, it is clever, and it’s a sneaky beast that promotes a cycle of false fulfillment.
Hunger of the deepest kind, comes from the Soul. The only cost is choosing to ignore the soul’s work for instant gratifications and selling yourself to the crowds. The Soul tasks us to go inside, move away from an audience, to be still, to listen, to feel ourselves, to fill up and serve, empty the waste, and continue to heal and give our reality to ourselves and others. Every moment we do not move from the soul, we are selling ourselves short. 
Your value does not rest in the attentions of purchasing powers. Your value does not rest in being good at press handstands or backbends. Your value is not worn in the clothes your wear or the products you use. Your value is not up for competition or playing victim. You are so much more than all that shit. Your value is determined by your why. Why you started the work within. Why you are called to do this work. My why brings me to tears and guts me. My why moves me into radical self love and action that continues to guide me in my own unique way. My why is motherhood. My why is my depression. My why is to continue to do the work from the inside-out, not the outside-in. My why is yoga. My why is to teach others about themselves. My why is stand strong, brave, bold, vulnerable, and honest on my best days, as well as my worst. My why is my curiosity and wonder. My why is my reality.
Let your why be known. Let it be felt. Be fucking seen. Exactly as you are as the hero within. As you reveal your hero, you awaken others as their own hero. Rise up and give yourself away. It’s in your presence, your breath, your love. The point of it all is to make it purposeful, leading with endless curiosity and wonder. We are here to give it away, that’s the joy.

stephynow


It's moments like these we will remember.

It’s moments like these we will remember. We’ll remember smells, touches, what skin feels like against lips and fingertips. Maybe it’s the scruff of your beard, or dips in places where skin is scarred, or how heavy the tiniest feet can feel when pressed into soft handles.
We’ll remember sounds of boots tapping up steps as the mister comes home from a long, tiresome workday. When I think of sounds, I can hear the accent of my grandmother and her quiet, almost hushed laughter. Maybe we’ll talk about how much the hummingbirds loved your mom’s back porch so much and how I loved to photograph them. We’ll laugh about inside jokes, the quirky stories we shared, the imaginative play with building, coloring, mess-making.
We’ll remember dinner parties and living room picnics; we’ll bust out photos from when we sipped bourbon, played raunchy board games, toasted marshmallows, and traced poster-sized bodies of chosen family. We’ll reenact dance moves and grooves from the younger years and riddle on about late night shenanigans, music genres, and going on about wild tales of old flirts, flames, and flings. It will bring us to toast them all to the past.
We’ll remember weekend trips where we raced to watch the sunrise or head out to its set, it will remind us to never take one for granted. The outdoors will teach us that nature’s way is the only way, it will feel calm and crisp, and her air will settle in the lungs. It will be colorful and patient and yet always in transition, like life and death with each season.
We’ll remember how life happened so fast, even when it felt slow. We’ll slow-down memories of fast time and crisis. We will look back and see that everything had its pace and place, people would come and go, and it all happened accordingly, some with answers, some without.
For time is a misleading concept, yet we are always moving some way, somewhere. Everything is happening all at once. Take many photos, say what’s real, write, laugh, cry, hold on to people that love you and send love to the ones that don’t, be brave, feel everything, do the things that light you up and challenge you the most; life happens when we are standing still or moving right along with it.

stephynow