yoga, words, and eating plants

beep beep boop

Beep beep boop–is the title of my first blog post in maybe one year. As in, “beep beep boop,” the sounds a computer makes when it’s thinking. The sound a machine makes when it’s operating. Operating has always been a word I can never spell without spell-check because the single ‘p’ is confusing to me. I am by nature an over-analyzer, which has gotten me in loads of trouble, particularly with men and in spelling words. I tend to over-analyze the single ‘p’ until I am convinced it should be a double. Possibly I’ve come to rely on spell-check so much that I don’t even analyze it any longer, and I just go ahead an type two ‘p’s because that seems more natural and the autocorrect does it for me.

Beep beep boop is the sound my mind makes when I try to figure out how I can rewind time and un-do something I did that wasn’t such a good idea, and didn’t have the result I intended. I rarely actually regret something I’ve done and want to go back with a time machine and do everything over. But sometimes I do.

Also the sound my mind makes trying to figure out how to take an action in order to get an intended result. Beep beep boop. Because I am a creature of WILL and I move from my center of will power more than I move from my center of heart. What does that mean exactly? I’m still figuring it out; I will let you know about it. Perhaps when the “beep beep boop” becomes louder than the gentle whirring rhythm of intuition and feeling.

Rhythm is a word I learned to spell in sixth grade band practice because our band instructor was obsessive about us memorizing r-h-y-t-h-m. You can’t be a musician and not be able to spell rhythm. It’s ridiculous. I played the saxophone. (I played for years and got quite good. Then it became nerdy and I joined choir instead and became the dance team captain. Later in life, being a musician becomes cool again, but not in 10th grade band.) A strange, plump, un-cool lady, sort of mean as a teacher, but I think she was good at what she did, and she certainly got me to learn how to spell rhythm. She said to think of the spelling rhythm IN a RHYTHM, r-h-y (rest) t-h-m. Beep beep boop (breath) beep beep boop. R-h-y. T-h-m. To this day, when I type or write rhythm, I am not thinking “rhythm,” I am thinking “r-h-y … t-h-m.” Even when I wrote it just now. I can’t type it without just looking at the letters one by one. Beep beep boop. Beep beep boop.

experimenting with more freedom

About seven or nine weeks ago, it hit me that I could be free. I could give and take freely without planning the outcome. I can bravely say exactly what I want, and let that come in, and then when it’s time to go, just go. I could at least experiment with being that and see what came up.

I did that. My nervous as the plane was landing was excruciating. What if we don’t like each other anymore? What if I made this all up in my head?

I didn’t make it up; I didn’t idealize the connection–or how much I adore the place we were, where we met. Biggest of all, I didn’t idealize or over-imagine my power to call in exactly what I need. Before I left, I journal and meditated over and over saying, “I feel confident, I feel free, I feel adored, I feel safe, I feel wise. I feel in the right place.”

I created a bunch of phrase about how I want to feel with a man, with myself, being romantic, being on my own, around strangers, while traveling, etc. Every single on of my “I feel” statements appear in abundance on my vacation. Every one. AND MORE. More than I could have ever even imagined.

I even called in thunderstorms. I said, “I want to see some thunder and lighting and RAIN.” And it did.

It’s a brave thing to love, to experience joy, and to keep moving through life even if life takes you in the other direction, steering you away from that love or joy — but when I stay open I am consistently, without fail, steered toward MORE love and more joy. I know so many ways, so many people who bring me joy and give me love, and to whom I love to give love. I’m not going to limit that anymore. I’m going to be brave and keep moving. “If everyone did that,” a wise friend said to me, “the world would be a much happier place to live and love in.”


money comes and goes. money comes and goes. money comes and goes. money comes and goes. money goes and goes and goes.

Our kitchen, January 13:

Talking about money, and our jobs, and our youth, I say, “I just wish money…”

She says, “Grew on trees??”

We both laugh. “No, I just wish money didn’t, like…matter so much.”

“It really doesn’t,” she says.

“You’re right. It really doesn’t.”


This time of year, I always get homesick. This time of my year last year was very different, though, from what my life is like now. Emotionally. Last year I was throwing myself into a magically blossoming love, and this year I am trying to process how that love failed. Both years, homesickness remains. Love or no love.

“Failed.” Yes, I believe it and I’m not being pessimistic. I want to have failures. I want to recognize that things fall apart and break and don’t work and get fucked up in a way that is not “success,” not grand, not what we planned, not what we wanted or want or needed or even now need.

I do not agree when people say there are no failures. It’s perspective, and I’m choosing to recognize FAILURE. I’m worshipping this failure.

This is what I know: Failure is not success.

But: Yes, every failure is a new step toward my ideal outcome. Failures are propellors. Failures are detours that save you from a fatal accident. Every setback is a new way for me to end up where I’m supposed to be.

If an optimist would say, “Well, then that’s not failure. That’s success!” then I’m not an optimist, but we always knew that anyway. I could call myself a realist, though I don’t like that either. It’s semantics. I like meaning. I like context.

“Failure is success in disguise.” In my opinion, that’s confusing, fluffy bullshit. It’s a glittery Band-Aid over acceptance and dealing. It’s an easy way out of keeping our eyes open when things feel like total shit.

Failure is when I feel like I had a plan, a desire, a drive, and it all crumbles. It doesn’t feel like success; it’s important that it doesn’t feel like success. I’ve learned that the deep weighted-belly feeling of failure, the bewilderment, the shame of losing — that is not success — is a vital sensation for me to observe. I’m taking time to know it. I’m letting it cradle me.

It fell apart. We made a mess. Good, it’s good to make messes. Let’s look at that. Let’s put our hands in that.

To rebrand that feeling as “success in disguise” points me the wrong way. It’s pretending that a mess is not a mess. Yes, failure is important and valuable and, in the end, beneficial. But it is not success.

But it does change your ideas about having plans.

the language of manifestation

I heard a story on The World about a behavioral economist who thought maybe our ability to save money and achieve goals has something to do with our language structure. (Here’s the link to that story.) He was intrigued by the difference in languages that use a future tense, like English, and those that don’t, like Mandarin Chinese and Norwegian.

People who speak future-language are

“’slightly nudged every time [they] speak, to think about the future as something viscerally different from the present.’ In Chinese, he says, that doesn’t take place. The present and future are the same.”

The study is in infancy and it isn’t proven, but it’s interesting, and “spiritual” people know it’s true. “I will go running tomorrow” doesn’t feel as real as “I’m running tomorrow.” Or even more powerful, simply, “I run.” 

It’s manifestation, right? Assert that the things you want are already in the present, and you’ll draw them toward you.

A (slightly cooky) acquaintance of mine even once suggested that I write all my goals in the form of  questions affirming what I’m trying to bring forth. Like, Why do I make so much money that I don’t worry about finances? How is my body so strong that I can win a marathon? 

When we separate our current selves from our future selves with “I will” or “I might” or “I’m thinking of…,” there’s always a little bit of hesitation about the truth of that statement. There’s always a projection of the image of our future self, not quite here, not yet.

How would life be if language didn’t even provide the option to project the possibility of future? If it only asserted future with confidence?

simply complicated

How perfectly simple things are and also infuriatingly complicated. How confusing! And how obvious.

I’m getting this transmission lately. I’m constantly seeing the extreme poles of the spectrum of things making sense. It’s coming out in my teaching, too. “Do this, notice that, be open to this…now just pause and don’t over-complicate it.” Be nothing. Be everything. Be the “universe,” which is nothing and everything all at once.

Because we over-complicated things. But things are always ever-so-simple. But sometimes they’re messy and confusing. Because…there are always many part of ourselves. BUT–when it comes down to it, there’s only one center.

It’s bizarre. But also obviously, plainly stated, easy to read. If you look. You’re nothing. you’re everything.

A control freak on contentment

I got SICK last week. The uber-flu. I’m still sick. I couldn’t move, cook for myself, practice yoga, lift weights, socialize, or have sex. I become a non-me. And I had to change my “practice” since I couldn’t leave my couch.

Still, I practiced. My practice doesn’t involve as much movement as it usually does. More reflecting. So this is what I’ve been practicing on.

Contentment talk. It’s on everybody’s mind. By following the career-, goal-, results-, power-driven guidelines this modern era has so kindly etched out for us, my inner dialogue about contentment vs. achievement often goes like —

Type A Power yogi: Contentment? I need results. I need advancement and a plan in my life. How will I get where I need to go if I’m rolling around mindlessly in the daisy field of contentment all day?

When the mind is fixated on result and goals, there is no such thing as “enough.” Talk about ENERGY SUCK to the max. I’ve lived that way. Or —

I see through my practice that contentment not only sparks the energy that it takes to make progress, but contentment essentially is progress. Settling into the present and being blissed about it naturally induces the high vibrations that get us to the next level.

It’s kind of paradoxical how contentment actually begs and breeds change and growth. Life’s so lovely that way!

Being totally accepting of wherever I am in my yoga practice (or my diet or my relationship or my money situation) always clears the path for more depth. I think about practicing a challenging yoga posture — once you’re comfortable using the wall for handstand, you feel instinctually when it’s time to step away from the wall. Not until you’re content at the wall, though. Only when you’re really enjoying handstand at the wall that suddenly — oh my g.o.d., my heels are not even ON the wall! I’m floating! I’m balancing!

How about healthy eating? Fixated on outcome, not present, not content in the moment: “God, I’m trying so hard; I want to eat right FOR GOOD. I know I can get leaner! I’m not doing enough, I’m not doing enough!!” Then what happens? Poor habits, more unhealthy eating patterns, and enslavement to anxiety. When contentment comes in, this happens: Calmness while eating; a good attitude surrounding food choices, making meals, consciously enjoying eating; not skipping meals, not binging, not freaking out about exercising the guilt away; eating better, and getting leaner. Actually seeing results.

There’s still a spark of intention or inspiration there, but the first layer is always contentment.

“Tips” with grit

“Tips” with grit

This is actually a good one. Typical and generalized like most “10 Things…” blog posts these days, but real. For example:

“Looks are deceiving.

Yoga was not designed to make 20-something white girls be as skinny as possible. Do not forget this. Never forget this.”

All of life is an act of letting go.GaslightImaging.Grey.TAH_6401.2048px

The story of stuff and the end or the beginning

This is the end. Here’s what I think: It’s impossible for us to continue this way.

I read this essay from Story of Stuff producer Annie Leonard this morning and felt torn. They’re important words and sentiments, and Annie Leonard is amazingly smart and doing powerful stuff. But to get through to the essay –which was blasted at my inbox because I receive Patagonia’s newsletters–I had to click a tiny X on a big banner proclaiming that I only have one more day to get FREE SHIPPING on my Patagonia order of $75. Patagonia has done stuff like this before, memorably on Black Friday, when they plugged “Buy Nothing Friday.” (Or was it Buy Nothing Except Patagonia Friday?) Look, I love Patagonia. I think as far as a consumer production entity goes, they rock. But then I stop and stutter — is it all just branding? Can there really be an honest effort toward change from any corporation that relies on and was born out of capitalism? Is there any way out of this mess?

There is something deeply, deeply wrong going on in our society. I think many if not most of us know it by now. If we don’t admit or acknowledge it, we still feel it. Because we are conscious, divine, peaceful beings who have gone the other direction. So the longer we trek down the path of consumerism, violence, isolation, “me-ness,” pleasure indulgence, and ignorance, the less we want to admit that something has gone wrong. My fear this week is that everything has gone wrong. The fact that I am so intensely in turmoil about this but I’m writing it with a stupidly expensive computer created perhaps by the hands of a pre-teen, that I’m posting my thoughts on Facebook as a means of “revolution,” that I don’t think twice when I turn the key in the ignition of my mom’s car to drive myself around town for the hell of it, buy a $3 cup of coffee because I can…that’s the conflict right there. Yes, there are the conscious among us, maybe like Patagonia, but we’re still part of the system that is killing all of us. We’re still cogs. Is there a way out from within?

But then I think–that’s fear. The very farthest place from consciousness. That seed in me is the same seed that makes people hate each other, fear change, hate themselves, abuse their bodies, drive instead of bike to work, refuse to eat in order to be thin, start wars, bomb airplanes, shoot children in school, buy things they don’t need, rape strangers, and be afraid of one another. We are afraid of one another and we’re afraid of not being afraid. Because it would mean drastic change.

Even I don’t know that I’m ready to completely change the way I think and act and live. But there is absolutely no other option. I think we’ve gone too far.


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