Follow by Email

Sunday, May 28, 2017

21-Day Goddess Training

Fitness that Fits Your Needs
Lesson 1: Love Yourself

I am grateful to share this crucial and powerful step for reclaiming your wellness. Yoga taught me to practice self-care and self-love. It is a way for me to connect with the Goddess inside me, to tune in to the light and love that exist within me. Our culture and the media want us to believe that we need to seek happiness from things like beauty products, money or weight-loss programs. However, when we pursue happiness outside of ourselves, we lose sight of what we truly want. We all want to be happy, healthy and to live sustainably. Yet, we are conditioned to buy this or that as if we can acquire happiness like a possession. When we tap into our own Divine being, we can access contentment, peace and wellness.

Commit to Goddess Yoga for 21 days and you will see and feel the difference.

Do these poses early in the morning or at night before you go to bed

1. Feet up wall pose - stay still for 10 deep, slow breaths
2. Child pose - snuggle in and relax for 10 deep breaths
3. Forward bend - to calm and relax for 10 slow breaths

Summer is the best time to yoga outdoors. I used to lead Yoga at the Park and now want to start Yoga at the Beach. Let me know if you are interested. Join https://www.facebook.com/events/244242812725420

Yoga at the Beach

Saturday, May 27, 2017

A Closer Look


I am so grateful for my yoga practice. I get to be present, to focus on my breathing and the poses. There is nothing to do and nowhere to be. I can slow down and tune in. It is a time and a way for self-care. At first, I struggled with my racing thoughts and my plans for the day. Then, I settled in to the challenging and relaxing poses. Three things yoga taught me are:

1. Appreciation - Being grateful for what's good and right in my life. Knowing that "this too shall pass" when I am dealing with a hardship or problem.

2. Being present - Breathing and observing my thoughts and feelings. Knowing that I am more than the sum of them. Being aware, but not engaging in the drama.

3. Caring about myself first - As women, we are conditioned to put others first and often put ourselves last. That is how we get stressed, tired and even burnt out.
fitnesswla

I am glad I gave yoga a try. I wasn't coordinated or flexible. I often felt like a "klutz", but I kept going back. I gained confidence in my abilities, I was more balanced and always feel great afterwards. My co-worker won't try yoga because he thinks it isn't hard enough. I wish he knew how hard some of the poses are. But yoga is not about competition or punishing the body with hard exercise. It is about union of mind, body and soul. Often, I ask people why they don't like yoga and get answers like "I'm not flexible," "It's too hard", "I don't have time" etc. As you see, there are many excuses but they pre-judge it without learning more or trying it out. In yoga, I became aware of my own excuses and prejudices. I often compared myself to others. "Why can't I be like so and so?" I always felt lacking in some way. Yoga taught me to see the Lie of Lack and know the truth of completeness. I am a Divine being, whole and complete - lacking in nothing. I still regress to the old thinking, but I catch myself and gently ask why. Asking why is a good way to tune in. Is this belief serving me? Is it true? I read The Soul of Money by Lynne Twist http://soulofmoney.org

Know the Big 3 Lies

1. The Lie of Lack - Not being or having enough
2. The Lie that More is Better - As Americans, we're conditioned to want more but having more is not making us happy. It's in fact bad for us and the environment.

3. The Lie that It's Just the Way It Is - B.S! This justifies complacency, cynicism, inaction, helplessness, hopelessness, resignation, etc.

As an individual, we are taught to be independent when in fact we are all interdependent. Take a closer look at your life. Do you grow your own food? Do you make your own clothes? We are dependent on each other in so many ways yet we are conditioned to believe that asking for help is a weakness. B.S! We all need to help one another, we all need support.



Friday, May 26, 2017

Calendar of Events




6/3 Shrinking Shores 9 am North of Annenberg Community Beach House Lifeguard Tower 2

6/3 Spring Thyme Kids Cooking Classes Ages 6-11. Space is limited. RSVP to Leticia Chihuahua at lchihuahua@ parks.lacounty.gov

6/4 Fallen Fruit Sweet & Sour! Let’s make fruit soda & pickles at Stoneview Nature Center 1-4 pm.
5950 Stoneview Dr., Culver City CA 90282

June 8: Acupuncture – Benefits and care of acupuncture (complimentary) Global Wellness Day GWD

Saturday, June 10th – Yoga for a Cause at Concert Park, 9am – 10am Concert Park, Playa Vista
  • June 10 Yoga @ 8:30 am Global Wellness Day
  • 6/11: Yoga – Benefits of yoga (complimentary)
  • June 12: Jukai Juice – Benefits of Juicing (complimentary) 

6/17 Mass Meditation Initiative 10 am free

Organizers expect over 3000 people to meditate simultaneously at the event and globally through a live stream at http://disclosurefest.org

Dog lovers and owners bonus - $20 credit towards your first dog walk or petting sitting

6/18 International Yoga Day http://www.iyd.yoga/

Thursday, May 25, 2017

How to Change - Be Empowered

 
Yoga Changed My Life

Being aware is the first step to making changes. I was not aware of how I treated my body and myself until I learned to tune in to my body and my thoughts. Yoga allowed me to do so in a safe space. It empowered me to dig deep and find the truth. It is not a religion, but a philosophy, a way of being present. Yoga teaches self-love and we cannot love others when we do not accept or love ourselves. Contrary to popular beliefs, self-love doesn't mean being selfish. I think the best way to describe yoga philosophy is the word "Namaste": a greeting that means "the divine in me sees and respects the divine in you." In yoga, all are equal.

It doesn't preach that one faith or religion is better than another. Everyone is a spiritual being having a human experience. We are not our bodies or our thoughts. Often, our culture, the media and the society wants us to buy in to the lies that are perpetuated by the old Domination Model. In fact, that model is detrimental to our health and well-being. Women are conditioned to believe that their self-worth is tied to how they look. We celebrate and value "beautiful" women as seen in ads on all types of media. Those women are thin, often too thin. Most of them are still Caucasians, most of them die their hair, have lots of makeup and wear body revealing clothes, tiny bikinis or no clothes at all. Be aware of all the ways media try to control your thinking. They want you to buy in to the lies that you are lacking in some way, that you need to buy this or that to feel and look better. Be aware of the ways media uses to desensitize, dupe and mind-wash you.

I stopped eating and shopping mindlessly when I grew aware of the Big Lies. I wanted to change and help others do so too. When I started Yoga in the Park, I wanted to share it with people out of love, but it wasn't sustaining me. I grew discouraged and stopped. When I began to write my book, I wanted to share what I learned from yoga and make a bigger difference. I wrote many chapters and worked hard on getting it published. I enrolled in a "Get Your Book Published" program, but got no support. I felt like I was wasting my time and money. I got angry at the person who ran the program, but didn't say anything. My mom taught me that if I don't have anything good to say, then say nothing. "Bite your tongue". Only, I internalized it and my anger led to a long hiatus from writing. 

I've always been artistic and creative. I loved to draw as a kid and often doodles in class. I wanted to be an artist or cartoonist but I was discouraged by my parents and my high school art teacher. They told me I wasn't good enough to make money as an artist. "Starving artist and writer" are terms thrown at me from an impressionable young age that I bought into the lie. Another lie is that unless you make a lot of money, you are not successful. All the famous artists and authors make plenty of money. That is how they are valued. You're a failure if your work doesn't sell. B.S! That's why I love to blog. I don't have to rely on traditional publishers to share my love of writing and the lessons that I've learned from yoga. There are many lies that we buy into. The Beauty and Weight Loss industries make billions of dollars from people like us who bought into their messages. Declare a Buy Nothing Day. Buy only what is essential for survival like food.

Here's a song that I created based on a children's song:

Head, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes
Face, body, heart and soul, heart and soul
I love every part of me.

Sing it a few times and give yourself this gift of love.




Wednesday, May 24, 2017

What Turns You On?


Yoga turns me on. It's all inclusive: it welcomes all ages, all beliefs, all cultures, all faiths, all religions, all shapes and sizes. Yoga teaches acceptance, compassion and non-judgement. Most organized religions are exclusive. "If you don't believe what we believe, then you are bad, damned or evil." They teach a divisive mindset of "us against them". They forget the true meaning of love. I used to go to church and was an active part of the ministry, but I didn't agree with some of their teachings and left. All my "friends" at church stopped being my friends and I realized that they don't practice what they preach. I know this post may offend some people, but I offered to teach a yoga class at a Christian retreat and was told that it was not allowed. What happened to freedom of expression? What happened to all the people who follow certain faiths that they stopped loving others and start alienating, excluding them or demonizing them? I think we need to take an honest look at our culture and faiths or religious beliefs. Yoga unites - if more people practice yoga and learn its lessons of acceptance, compassion and non-judgement then we'd have a better, more peaceful world.
Let's meet and talk. https://www.facebook.com/groups/1922289331381752/

Yoga Faith
Global Wellness Day
Disclosure Fest

Ingrid
Dreamer, Storyteller and Teacher 
https://www.linkedin.com/in/ingridcheng2/

Monday, May 22, 2017

Food for Thought


Eating well is not enough, you need to eat right for your body and take care of yourself. 1 in 3 Americans suffer from hypothyroidism, 85% of women suffer from hormonal imbalance at least once in their lifetimes, 75% of women have PMS, 40% of adults have insomnia, 74% are sleep deprived. The World Health Organization predicts that depression will be the # 2 cause of disability and premature death by 2020. Studies show that 80-90% of diseases are stress-related. Our society places a premium on multi-tasking, productivity and speed. We are overworked and underpaid. As women and care-takers, we have 2 jobs and one of them is unpaid (taking care of our family or loved ones). It's time to pause, slow down and put ourselves first. We can't care for others when we are sick or stressed. Make a list of things you love to do: put them in 2 categories.  Healthy vs Unhealthy, my co-worker who practices yoga 2-3 times a week likes to drink wine to relax. When she gave up her class of wine and drank herbal tea instead, she lost 20 pounds in just 3 months! Just one simple change can make a difference. What will you change to be healthier?

I am reading Born to Blog by Mark W. Schaefer and Stanford A. Smith. It made me realize that I was born to blog, I am a dreamer, a storyteller and I used to teach 2n-3rd grades. In Chapter 18 of the book - "Getting Personal", it talked about showing your personal side and taking a risk. I became a teacher because I love kids and wanted to make a real difference. I had a Business degree and a good job, but I wasn't satisfied. I started volunteering for a great non-profit Free Arts for Abused Children. I went to their events almost every weekend and enjoyed doing arts or crafts with the kids who just blossomed when they got the attention and a creative way to express themselves. I'd ask them what they like about themselves. Often, they'd look at me like I was speaking a foreign language. I'd share one thing that I appreciate myself for and wait. Most of the time, I'd give them a nudge. They'd say "I like my eyes or something physical." I then prompt them to find an inner quality that they admired. It'd take a while, but when they came up with it, their eyes and faces lit up. I felt such joy in sharing this simple step of self-love with them. I got burnt out as a teacher and quit. I felt like a failure. I stopped volunteering and working with kids regularly. I'm ashamed that I've forgotten how much I love kids.

Recently, I joined Girl Friends Circles because I wanted to be a better friend. I realized that like Mark who shared in Born to Blog, I've lost sight of what it means to be a friend. "It's a word that has been
cheapened by social-media. I was not getting to know the people behind their avatars" or social profiles. "I want to have real conversations and make real friends. I want to talk on the phone and even meet the people" in my social circles. I am also promoting Global Wellness Day.

Join my Being Well Group and come to a Healthy Cooking event - learn to take control of your health. Cost of eating healthy $ vs cost of dieting or diseases $$$. Choose one. Join now! https://www.facebook.com/groups/1922289331381752/

Friday, May 19, 2017

How to Break Bad Habits

One tool you can use to break free of bad habits and be attuned to your body is to observe the tension you carry in your body. Are you holding your breath or is your breathing quick and shallow? Are your shoulders stiff and tense? Just be aware without being critical. Take 3 deep, slow breathes - inhale to draw air (oxygen) into your lungs, feel your rib cage and belly expand and exhale to release stress or tension. A mantra you can use internally while you do this simple breathing exercise is "let go". Set an intention. What do you wish for? Inhale, "I let go of my pain". Exhale, "let go"

I am reading The Power of Partnerships: Seven relationships that will change your life by Riane Eisler. It is an eye-opening book about the old Domination Model based on authority/ control (win-lose) and the new Partnership Model based on respect (win-win). http://ow.ly/gi0L30bRUtM


Join The Partnership Revolution - Connect, Collaborate and find Common Ground to create win-win.
Yoga teaches us to be in partnership with our bodies, to treat them with care and respect. By practicing yoga, we become attuned to and connected to our bodies and our spiritual beings. Yoga made me aware of how I was harming myself with the bad habits of mindless eating and dieting. It connects me to the truth that I was seeking comfort from food. Now, when I feel the urge to indulge, I ask myself if doing that will satisfy me or if I'd feel better with a healthier choice.