than rolling out the mat

This will be another blog post.

Meanwhile while I am writing that one I would like to know from you:

What means Yoga for you?

I look forward to all your answers <3

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Center Yourself exactly where you are…

Center Yourself exactly where you are…

That’s your starting point – being aware of where you are right now is the most important to start moving.

If you want to go into the Yoga tree you need to make sure you know the floor you are standing on. Is it uneven, do you stumble, are there stones, is it possible to slip? Only when you know where you stand you can lift up one leg and still stand steady.

The very same counts for everything in your life – only when we are fully aware of the NOW we are confident to step forward.

Center yourself, listen, feel, breathe – all that you are right now is important. This brings you not only mindfully into the present, it grounds you and makes you completely aware of what you need right now.

If I know where I am I can start going without being afraid to get lost – I will find my way back if needed. But if I’m lost I may not find what I’m looking for because I have no idea where to head to. This may be fine, we all know that often out of these lost times something great emerges. BUT to grasp the greatness that approaches I need to see it. Most probably I won’t realize what’s in front of me when I am not centered and grounded.

When we want to drive somewhere with our car we need to make sure each time that we have fuel and that we have the keys to ignite the engine – without we won’t go anywhere.

When we wake up in the morning we need to ignite our life flame. What are we burning for, do we have enough energy (fuel) for what we want to reach? These questions are important to stay sane.

In my lowest low period I may not start to move mountains but I may be creative and work in silence. On my highest high I may be overflowing with energy and may not bundle it to quiet my mind for something that needs lots of concentration but I may be able to physically work on something, flow through a powerful day or lift other up in being full of positivity.

We have all in us, from the lowest low to the highest high and so many stages in between that we need to adjust.

If we try to go against the nature of our being we will long-term ruin ourselves. That’s why it’s important to check on ourselves and even if our day starts powerful we may slip into a low throughout the day, then take a moment and re-adjust.

The power of mindfulness is so so so damn important if we want to stay healthy and sane! We are workers and doers, we are mothers and fathers, wives and husbands, cleaners and cooks, drivers and guides. We are so much and nobody will tell you to take a minute and listen into yourself while doing all those tasks day in and day out.

We are responsible to be mindful with our life, with our body and soul. We need to listen and accept, the accepting part is often the hardest. We listen, and we know it’s time to stop. But we often ignore this inner voice and risk our well-being instead of adjusting to what we are right here and right now.

Self-care! At the end of the day it’s our own responsibility to take care of ourselves. In low and in high times, in happiness and in sadness, all these times are important; only if we embrace the low and trust that we will be fine again we will be able to embrace the high.

There is no always happy life and even if it seems sometimes so from an outside position we need to trust that all that happens is important. We only grow, and we even grow more during the low times than during the high ones. Many creative minds worked on their masterpieces while being deeply sad or broken – this doesn’t mean that we need to like these times, but we need to love ourselves even more then.

Only if we accept that we are all, all the emotions and feelings that run through us, only then we will be able to create a life we want to live. And even then we will have times where we would like to bury our heads under the blanket and that’s OK! That’s what life is all about – learning, feeling, growing, loving, enjoying, crying, teaching, sharing. Take all and embrace the whole.

Center Yourself exactly where you are…

…because you are worth it, you are deserving it and you are in charge of your life. Take care!

Balanced Mom or how to relax with a toddler

Balanced Mom or how to relax with a toddler

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Who said motherhood is easy-going?

It isn’t!

Or better said, it isn’t always!

I was practicing Yoga before pregnancy, almost until the very end of my pregnancy and I started about six weeks after birth again to roll out my mat and loved it but what happened then?

My baby started to move around. I think that was the point when I began to let go.

You prepare the place and it looks so inviting and before you start he wakes up after a 5 minutes nap that should have been a 2 hour nap.

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And for sure you want your baby to grow and move and explore the world but not just at that moment when you are on your mat.

But that’s life – babies don’t care at all what you want and it is their right!

I’m always saying myself that I wanted him so much and that he deserves my attention. Life without him is unimaginable so what am I complaining about? But still, there’s a tiny voice inside of me saying that I deserve also some time for myself so I just started to check where to find this time because my yoga mat was invaded now by a toddler.

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In general letting go is something wonderful, letting go old nasty habits, letting go people who stress you, letting go old wounds, letting go bad memories BUT why should I let go my personal realm?

I didn’t want to let it go, it just happened and I was too weak to scream STAY.

There were these endless nights of no sleep and days without one free arm, hours and hours of carrying a baby followed by hours and hours of breastfeeding. And then you see these super-fit moms on Instagram who breastfeed their babies while being in a state of complete relaxation while standing upside down – yes, this is what I needed to be more frustrated even.

I love Jen Pastiloff’s No Bullshit Motherhood because that’s the truth!

We struggle more often than you can even imagine and all of a sudden the baby is asleep and then we worry if he or she is fine instead of using the time to relax, we think we need to be perfect but hey – we DON’T NEED to be perfect – we need to survive this crazy journey of being a mom to be there as we promised our babies in the very first second after birth.

“I’ll be there for you until the end of my life and beyond, my love for you will never die!”

My son is now 14 months and have no idea where all this love is coming from but I love him more each day although I thought it cannot be bigger than when we first met. BUT I am also tired on some days and stressed on others and sometimes both.

My Yoga practice is, let me call it, slightly irregular but I found out that I need less time to relax than before I was a mom. Less time because I know that I need to grab every second as this will be better than nothing so I relax while folding clothes, I relax while having a shower, I relax while being out for a walk when he sleeps, I relax these 5 minutes on the playground when he’s happily eating the sand again (it will improve his immune system, that’s what I tell myself because I cannot stop him anyway).

Today I had really time for yoga, my husband and my son had an afternoon nap and finally I rolled out my mat (to realize that I’m stiff like a wooden stick but who cares) and yes, it felt so so so good.

But more often the truth is that I try to squeeze in 5 minutes with a messy bun on my head just to have the feeling I haven’t lost my yoga at all.

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I know that this is just a phase and that things change, until then I will embrace this motherhood exactly the way it is! Mostly the best ever and sometimes just beyond my strengths.

Stay strong dear moms out there because you know what – WE ROCK (no men can even imagine what we are capable of and we should be proud of ourselves!)

Standing on the mat for a few deep breaths is sometimes all we manage but that’s fine because we feel alive and know that one day these few deep breaths are just the start of a whole new yoga practice because our children grew up and we miss them on our mats so deeply.

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I am thankful that I am experiencing all of this, even if it’s not easy from time to time, I just see my son and know it all is so worth it and everything happens for a reason!

Namaste ॐ Yogamamas

 

Yoga isn’t my religion

Yoga isn’t my religion

This topic came up a few times since I started to practice Yoga and now I want to tell you that I can be a Yogi without being a Hinduist or a Buddhist!

Not everyone who is running into a Yoga Studio or carries a Yoga mat with him or her has suddenly a religion.

It’s not like “Buy one mat and get a religion for free”.

It is a fact that yoga works with each and every religion.

I am married to a Muslim and therefore I am in a couple of Facebook groups out of curiosity to read how other non Muslim women go along with their Muslim husbands.

What I realized quite quick is that many converted or reverted and are even more strict than a born muslim is.

We had the Yoga topic and I was bombarded with statements like “The wife of a muslim shoulnd’t do this!” as if I would instantly worship a “forbidden” religion.

Here’s my answer:

First of all, yes, my husband is a Muslim, but that doesn’t make me one automatically – like the buy one yoga mat it’s not “marry a Muslim and get his religion for free”. I’m still capable of choosing my own faith!

The second point is that I have never seen Yoga as a religion, why would I?

Many are discussing if you can practice Yoga and still hold your faith.

Why not?

The history of Yoga started around 5000 years ago and was connected to the Vedras which play a role in the roots of Hinduism.

What you can see nowadays, as they share the same language, is that some chanting refets to hindu gods.

Ok, but not every yogi is sitting in a class and is chanting in hindu (many are not even speaking nor understanding hindu so why would they do it?). There are many many people out there practicing yoga regularly whithout having chanted even once! I’m one of them.

I use mantras from time to time – uhuuhhh, what’s that?

A mantra is nothing else than any repeated word or phrase – in meditation you can use it for yourself to manifest certain things for your own life like for instance “Let go of …” or “Trust yourself and love yourself” – whatever is important for you rat that moment. Mantra comes from the Sanskrit word ‘meaning’.

The Yoga language is simply Sanskrit, the same way Christianity is in Latin but Latin itself is not a religion, Islam in Arabic but Arabic itself is not a religion and Judaism is in Hebrew but Hebrew itself is not a religion.

Yoga was even rejected by Hinduism because yoga would not insist that god exists. It didn’t say there was no god but just wouldn’t insist there was.

For me this is another proof that Yoga is not a religion and should not affiliate with any religion.

There’s not one religious creed to be found.

You don’t have to follow certain rituals, such as baptism or confirmation. You don’t have obligations like in several other religions, such as visiting the church or mosque for prayer, fasting, celebrating feasts or receiving sacraments.

What is it then if not a religion? Is it sports, fitness, a hobby?

No, yoga was formed as a way to sit for hours, days, months, maybe longer in a meditative state, as a spiritual practice.

It is a spiritual way of living.

It is a way that teaches you mindfulness, how to take care of your mind, body and soul and how to be a good person.

What about the yogis that eventually would like to reach the state of enlightenment?

This enlightenment will not turn them into a god or a worshiper of god!

It means that they are able to experience a state of inner peace, bliss, some are saying they’ve seen their inner light, they connected to their deepest inner self. But that’s indeed all – no religious sign.

It’s a journey to our inner self.

If I step on my mat I feel calm, I connect with myself and listen to my body, mind and soul.

I breate consciously and fade out the stress of the daily life.

It’s my time to unwind and relax while going in and out of different yoga poses that strengthen my body.

I listen to myself or am still and take the stillness as a recreation for my mind.

The time while I’m doing Yoga is simply the time where I am able to honor all I am and the people around me.

I feel blessed because in times of stillness you are able to connect to what really matters.

If it’s not my religion, why do I post Buddha quotes on my social networks from time to time?

Because I am in charge of who I am and what I like or dislike.

I love Buddha quotes but that doesn’t mean I am a Buddhist, I love quotes from ancient philosophers as well – there is lots of wisdom to be found in many directions and I don’t decide if I like it based on which religion the authors belonged to.

I choose what I like based on the words I read.

One last question was why I can say Namaste without being connected to Hinduism?

Do you have any idea what Namaste means?

My soul honors your soul.

I honor the place in you where the entire universe resides.

I honor the light, love, truth, beauty & peace within you, because it is also within me.

In sharing these things we are united, we are the same, we are one.

 

Said that I give you now my personal explanation; I’m open-minded and one rule for my life is to respect and tolerate every living being on this earth.

I would dare to say that I am a better person than someone else because it’s not my right to put myself in a higher position.

I appreciate my life how it is and therefore also honor or thank others because people teach people lessons.

I wouldn’t be where I am without all those people on this earth.

 

Sending love & light.

Namaste ॐ

 

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Yoga isn't my religion