Courage to Change
[00:00:00] Thank you for listening to the Luminous Recovery Yoga Podcast, hosted by Kari Doherty. The views and opinions expressed here are strictly those of the person who gave them. Take what you like and leave the rest. These views and opinions do not represent any specific 12 step program, only my experience, strength, and hope in recovering from the dis-ease of addiction and codependency.
If you'd like to learn more, please visit my website at www. Dot Luminous Recovery Yoga dot.
Hello my friend. Thank you so much for joining me. This is Luminous Recovery Yoga podcast, and I am Kari, your hostess, and I'm so happy to be here with you. I really appreciate this space. I come to this space to share with you to share my experience, strength, and hope in recovery.
And to me, recovery is the act of calling your spirit. [00:01:00] Calling your spirit back from the people, places, things, and situations where we tend to leave ourselves behind, where we get stuck. Sometimes that stuckness could look like. Past relationships that never got resolved, or situations where we still continue to obsess and play out the same things over and over again in our mind.
Our mind is very powerful. Our mind has the power to set us free or to keep us miserable or anything in between. It's really interesting how we could change our thinking, which could change our feelings, which then affect our actions in the world. Thoughts, feelings, actions. This is a space where I come to share with you.
I share my recovery. I share how yoga has played a big part of my recovery and, to those things I bring together. Because for me, they have always been together. I actually discovered recovery in the yoga studio. Through a person who brought recovery to my attention that I met in [00:02:00] yoga. To me, yoga and recovery have never been separate.
They have always been two parts of me that have evolved into each other, and I can't seem to separate them. This podcast is an opportunity for me to share with you how those things work in my life and how these healing modalities help bring me to where I am today. It moves me forward. I really love this opportunity to share that with you.
A couple of things before we get jumping into our topic today. Check out the P D F that I include with the episode. The P D F is a fun way to just look at some questions that I ask throughout the episode, some additional things for consideration. I put it together as a journal entry so you could actually print it out.
You could write things down. Or you could just download it and take a look at the questions and see what you think, and just take the information in in a way that becomes useful to you so that you can listen to what I'm [00:03:00] sharing and then consider how this applies to your own life or doesn't, or anything in between.
You might find that some of the questions resonate, some of them don't. As I like to say, and as we say in recovery, take what you like and leave the rest, but use it as an opportunity to digest the information to take it in and to make it your own. That resource is available to you. Please download it, print it out, send it to a friend.
Anything that you think would be useful. If you enjoy this podcast, please consider sharing it. It really helps me to build this thing, this thing that I'm building. So if you like it, maybe you have a friend who would also like it and it would really help me if you share it. As far as that pdf, it's gonna ask you for your name and your email.
That's gonna put you on my subscriber's list. The awesome thing about getting put on my subscriber's list is that every week I'm gonna send you a fun email that will remind you of the New Week's episode, and it will also include that pdf. So you give me your email once, and then [00:04:00] you'll continue to receive that episode PDF when I change them and update them with each episode, and then that will just become a part of your repetoire.
Give me your email once and I promise not to abuse it. I will only send you useful information and things that will help you on this journey of recovery and yoga and whatever it is that you're seeking, that I could be helpful to you with that. Please consider the pdf, it's a useful guide.
Also, if you're looking for additional things to do, additional resources, every week I co-lead a meeting called Yoga and 12 step Recovery Y12SR. It's a really amazing way to, again, bring in yoga and recovery and how these healing modalities help us in the world. In Y12SR we say the issues live in our tissues.
And I don't just mean Kleenex. I mean the issues live in our body. Our body holds what we've been through because 100% of our experiences have been through our body. Our body holds the tension. [00:05:00] Our body holds the story. If you're looking for something new to explore, consider joining me for a yoga and 12 step recovery meeting because that's just a in-person live experience about how you can include new tools in on the journey.
Even if you're not in recovery, if you're recovery curious, you don't have to be sober. You don't have to be in recovery. You could just be curious. Curiosity can help a lot just by wondering, hmm, what could this be like? So anyway, join me. , plenty of opportunities to get involved and to try something new.
It is a new year. If you're listening to this when it's released, it is January 20, 23, or maybe you're listening to this at some God knows when time. And that's amazing too. That's what I love about podcasts is it's a resource that just stays out there. So you know whenever you're listening to this, but for right now, it's a new year.
And [00:06:00] you know what's amazing is that I'm hearing so many people, and this is totally my sentiment, fuck the New Year . And I mean that in like a loving way where I'm just so tired of trying to push myself into New Year, new you energy. This year I am taking it slow. I am not resolving to do anything. I'm actually more focused on what I'm not gonna do and how I am not going to abuse myself this year.
Funny enough, I did join a gym, but it just so happened that I had January 2nd as a free day, and it was not because it was the new year. I had been planning to join the gym for a while and I'm joining the gym just because I need some additional opportunities to leave the house. And that just feels like a simple, easy way to do it.
It's a complicated relationship. I have a complicated relationship with my body, and it's something that I am always working [00:07:00] to bring into more integration, to be more integrated with myself, to accept myself as I am. And you know, movement is important. Movement is something that I feel I was abused out of for a long time.
I had honestly, a history of mean gym teachers. That's really what it was for me. It was having adults who bullied me and I was told by the adults in the room that were in that I was in their care, that I was fat. I was put into tight gym clothes that traumatized me. I was told to run laps around a gym that traumatized me, and I was yelled at, I was yelled at for being slow.
I was yelled at for not being athletic. And that traumatized me. And so when I left high school, after years of abuse from gym teachers, I had vowed to never move again, and the only person that that hurt was me. I'm in a place now [00:08:00] in my thirties where I am discovering movement. And you know what's fascinating and fabulous is that I wanna distinguish the difference between exercise and movement.
And that movement is, for me, movement is for my body. And exercise has this connotation with losing weight because most of what I was taught about exercise is that exercise is to lose weight. And the only reason that we exercise is to lose weight.
And so that's a very complicated relationship for me. I am in a place in my life where I'm discovering, as a way of keeping my body healthy and not because it's always with that caveat of losing weight, and that's just been part of the complicated relationship for me. I don't know, maybe you'll resonate with that. Maybe you'll resonate with exercise verse movement. , which is why I enjoy yoga. Yoga is a form of movement that I enjoy and I've had to even really work to unravel yoga as exercise.[00:09:00]
Yoga certainly can be exercise. I've been to plenty of yoga studios where the point of it is actually much more like you're in a calisthenic class or cardio class. And I'm really working to unravel that for myself as well. I want yoga to be a form of movement that leaves me feeling better in my body.
Anyway, that's just a lot of extra stuff. That's not what we're talking about today. But it does relate. It does relate. I will say it always relates. The topic for today, if you listen to our last episode, if not, you could jump over to that. After you listen to this. If you want, you can listen to these in any order that you want, but I'm working through the Serenity Prayer, and as I mentioned in the last episode, I'm breaking the Serenity Prayer into three different parts.
If you don't know the Serenity Prayer, let me say that for you. Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot. courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the [00:10:00] difference. In our last episode, we talked about accept the things I cannot change. This week we're talking about courage to change the things I can.
That's where the movement verse exercise things thing comes in. I have to accept that in my past. was abusive, that there was a, an element of abuse in there for me. That I was abused by the adults whose care I was in. And that is something I have to accept. Except the things I cannot change. I cannot change my past.
My past is my past. Courage to change the things I can. Ooh, I'm getting chills cuz the truth is I wasn't intending to talk about that exercise verse movement thing. It just sort of organically came out. If I am to accept the things I cannot change, but then have the courage to change the things I can, that means that it is my choice to be an adult and to make new relationship pathways for myself with movement.
I can't change the fact that I was traumatized in the [00:11:00] past. But what I can change is right now I can decide how I wanna be, who I wanna be in my body, and what my relationship to that is. Courage to change the things I can. One of the main things that I want to talk about today in terms of courage to change the things I can, is I wanna talk about the difference and, and to not get confused with the idea that courage.
Is not the same thing as confidence. I'm gonna say that again. Courage is not the same thing as having confidence. Courage to change the things I can is not having the confidence to change the things I can. Confidence is something that might come later. Confidence might never come. We can act as if we can pretend to be someone who is confident, but that's not required.
Courage requires bravery, and [00:12:00] bravery and courage are sometimes taking a chance on ourself or taking a chance on something new, knowing that we don't know how it's gonna turn out. There's that saying, the devil we know versus the devil we don't or something like that. Another way of saying that would be, if you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always got.
But the thing about doing what you've always done and getting what you've always got is that even if it's shit, you still know what you're gonna get. There's this element of when we change the things we can and we have that courage, that bravery, we don't always know how it's gonna turn out. And, and that's scary.
And we can't wait to have confidence because confidence means that like we know what we're doing and we feel good about it, and it's like, oh yeah, that old thing. I know how to do that. You know what's interesting is that. Confidence is also something that I think we see in each other, not something we necessarily see in ourselves.
And I know that that's definitely true for me. I know that there are people who listen to this podcast, [00:13:00] friends that I have, students that I have. Sometimes there's students who are also friends who see me as confident, and that's just not always true. It's wonderful that they see that in me, that they believe I exude, confidence.
but that's not always true. Like what it takes for me to sit down in front of a camera and film my thoughts and ideas to be vulnerable. Sure, it looks confident and, and right now I feel confident. I'm like, yeah, I know what I'm talking about. Right. But that's not always true. what it took to start a new business in 2022.
What it takes to sit down and share myself vulnerably, to share myself generously with my podcast listeners. Really, it's mostly courage and that courage, because I do it week after week, begins to build confidence, but I did not have this confidence when I first sat in front of this camera with a [00:14:00] microphone on and started recording my thoughts.
And sharing it with the internet. That did not, I did not wake up like this as Beyonce says. Sometimes confidence comes over time. Confidence comes when I think we build that courage muscle. But confidence does not mean having courage. Courage to change the things I can means that we're gonna take a chance on ourselves, that we're gonna try something new.
It might flop, it might fail. We might look stupid, and I'm gonna get up. Dust myself off and maybe even try again because in order to change the things I can, I have to have courage. I have to be willing to show up to something that I don't know how it's gonna turn out and try it anyway, and that my friend is not easy.
It might be simple, but it is not easy. Another thing not to confuse simplicity with ease. Simple does not mean easy. [00:15:00] Having courage is something that we have to. Do. Having courage to me is part of discipline. Part of discipline like yoga is a discipline. Yoga is a practice of discipline.
It's, it's getting up doing things. You know, I think about meditation. Meditation takes discipline. When I first started meditating, I hated it. It was really hard. I didn't want to do it. I found every excuse to not do it. Oh, it's Sunday. I will not meditate. Why? I don't know. It's just, it's Sunday and I don't meditate on Sundays.
I am now at a point where I've got like 200 some days in a row of meditation. I've been working on this for years. Meditating, meditating, meditating. Break, break, break, break, break, meditating, meditating, meditating. And then finally, I just decided this is something I need to do every day, regardless whether it's Sunday, if I don't feel good, I get up.
It's the first thing I do in the morning. I get up, I go to the toilet, [00:16:00] I go to the cushion, and I do that every day. And that requires discipline. And discipline also requires courage. Because doing things that we don't always wanna do, but we know it's something that's good for us, or we know it's something that's gonna get results later because we're gonna sit and do it now.
That's where yoga becomes discipline, where it's like, this is something that I, this is the person I wanna be. This is how I want to be in the world. When I first started meditating, it was really hard. I sit there and my thoughts would churn and churn and churn. And that's one of the things.
beginning meditators. I think there's confusion that somehow when we meditate, we're supposed to clear our mind or that we're supposed to feel this sense of, I don't know, ease and grace, and that is just not true. Oftentimes, when we first begin that meditation practice, it's us sitting there with our thoughts spinning, and part of the practice [00:17:00] is to notice that your thoughts are spinning.
it's to notice that you are having thoughts, and it's in that noticing that we begin to create a little bit of space between I am my thoughts and I am having thoughts. Oh, look at me. My thoughts are going crazy right now as opposed to that act of thinking and. Following each and every thought. One of the things that we do in mindfulness meditation is we sit there and we breathe and we notice we're having a thought.
We drop the thought and we come back to I am sitting here, I am breathing. This is what's happening right now. It's like that act of noticing, oh, look at me. I'm having a thought. I'm gonna drop that thought. I'm not gonna go any deeper into that thought. I'm gonna come back to the present moment. for me, that took a lot of courage.
It takes a lot of courage to sit down on that cushion every day, and now 200 some days in to meditating, every day there is a confidence where I'm like, [00:18:00] Nope, this is just what I do. I just sit on the cushion. I put on the timer. I sit, I breathe, and every day it's not always incredible. Some days I sit there and I think a lot and I'm like, oh, look at you having so many thoughts.
Look at you, and I'm gonna still do it. I'm gonna still show up to the practice every day. And there is confidence now that, Hey, I'm just gonna do it even if it doesn't look good. I'm just, the confidence is that I'm willing to do it and not look good. But that took courage. That took bravery. courage to change the things I can.
I wanna share a couple of things with you. I have some readings that I wanna share. I love sharing literature because it just, I don't know, for me, it helps me to show that this isn't random. Like, to be honest with you, I didn't come up with this. This is stuff that has. This is stuff that I've discovered in my recovery that I wanna share with you.
And if you're not in recovery, that's great. You're getting recovery, you're getting some knowledge, some wisdom that might help in your own recovery. Cuz I truly believe we are all [00:19:00] recovering from something, something, whether it's a physical injury, an emotional injury, maybe it's not even injury, maybe it's how we see ourselves in the world.
We all have something we're recovering from. And if you don't know what that something is, that is okay, but you still are probably recovering from something. I wanna start with this. I wanna just give you a content warning. I'm gonna use the word God. If you don't resonate with the word God, that is okay.
Take what you like and leave the rest. You could also substitute the word God for the word universe or nature, or. Something bigger than you. Like we all must admit at some point that there is a power greater than ourselves because we are not running this show. This planet spins and I have nothing to do with it.
That sun shines every day and I have nothing to do with it. Those are powers greater than me, so I'm just gonna put that out there. Asking God for courage to change the things I [00:20:00] can is dangerous for me at. if I'm not careful, I overwhelm myself with all of the various things I could change. And I become paralyzed by inaction.
It helps to pray for knowledge of exactly what God wants me to change at any given moment. I think of the things I can change as the things God wants me to change. And that's a really interesting idea because you know, if you might be like me a little type a, maybe a lot of type A. I could probably give you a list of 80 things that I could change right now, but that's not the point.
The point isn't just to change things arbitrarily or to change things to keep myself busy. What does higher power want for me when I think about accepting the things I cannot change? Okay. Those are, that's the list of things that I can't do anything about. Having the courage to change the things I can means.
What are these things in my life that are creating stuckness where I have to [00:21:00] move forward from what I can't change, and accept the things, the courage to change the things I can. Accept the things I cannot change, but have the courage to change the things I can. And. The experience I shared earlier about, I, I have to accept the fact that I was in the care of adults who maybe thought they were goo doing good things for me by bullying me, but it did not, it hurt me.
I could live in that for the rest of my life. I could decide like, Nope, there's damage there. I don't wanna do movement because it, it hurt, hurts me. It scares me. But then I have to ask, well, is that gonna help my heart and lungs? Is that gonna help my brain? Is that gonna help my body to get into old age?
Because we do know that exercise helps with aging, and we're all aging. We are all the youngest we've ever been and the oldest we have ever been right now. If I want to have a life of longevity, then exercise and movement exercise, movement is a part of that. Moving my body is a [00:22:00] part of. taking care of myself, and so I have to have the courage to change the things I can.
Now, certainly I could go out there and spin around about all of the things that I could do to help my body, but at the end of the day, you just kind of have to ask, well, what is God's will for me? and then change that thing. That's like, I think a caution to having courage to change the things I can is it doesn't mean you have to change everything, and it doesn't mean you have to change it all at once.
And there is something about getting bogged down with too many choices that can create paralysis. Don't, don't develop choice paralysis because, oh, there's so many things I can change. Pick one. Or maybe take the day off. Maybe be like, part of what I can change today is not spinning around about all the things I can change.
What I like about that little excerpt that I read is that you don't want to become paralyzed by an action because there are a lot of things that you could change. But really the question [00:23:00] is, what is God's will for me today? What does God want from me? And we'll just tackle that thing today. And then there's one other thing that I wanna share.
This is from Courage to Change. The other reading that I just read is from a book called Hope for Today, and this is called Courage to Change. Let's see. And it says, and I'm just gonna read this quote, a couple of quotes here. We consider what is within our power to change instead of expecting others to do the changing.
As a result, problems have a better chance of getting solved and we lead more manageable lives today. If I'm troubled, I will assess the situation and consider my options. I will not wait for anyone else to change, but will focus on myself and the part I can play in making the situation a better one quote, nothing can bring you peace but yourself.
And that's from Ralph Waldo Emerson. nothing can [00:24:00] bring you peace but yourself. And what I love about that is courage to change the things I can. means that I'm not waiting on other people to make changes before I make changes. Well, when they change, then I can change or I can't change because that person is that way.
Nope. I get to make changes today and I get to take care of myself. I get to keep the focus on myself and keeping the focus on myself. Does not mean that I accept unacceptable behavior. It means that I recognize that if I want something to change, the only person I can change is me. I'm not waiting for other people to change.
I'm not waiting for the world to change. You know, I'm not waiting for culture to decide that it's okay for a certain size of person to go to the gym, or that culture says it's okay for, you know, like I have to just decide to change. and that change is within my grasp. It's within my reach and that I have the courage to change, the bravery to change, even if that change is hard, even if I'm unsure, even if I, you know, maybe [00:25:00] there are times when I don't exactly know what God wants from me.
and then that might mean that I have to wait a little bit, or it might mean waiting for inspiration, or it might mean, you know, taking care of hungry, angry, lonely, tired. If you haven't listened to the episode on halt, listen to the episode on halt because halt, which is an acronym that stands for Hungry, angry, lonely, tired, whenever we're one of those things we should.
halt, right? Stop. Halt, stop, stop. Because I'm hungry, angry, lonely, tired. And when I'm any one of those things, that's generally not the time that I should make a big life change or decision. Because if I'm hungry, angry, lonely, or tired, chances are that my neurochemistry is off. That maybe my thinking becomes a little distorted.
You know, hangry is really a thing. Or when you're very tired and you just become a little irrationally crabby. That means it's time to just lay down and take a nap, not make major decisions. Also courage to change might mean the courage to take a [00:26:00] nap, the courage to eat a meal, the courage to recognize I'm lonely and maybe I should reach out to my friend, or I'm angry and maybe I should sit with that.
Having courage to change might also mean the courage to sit there and do nothing. One of my favorite sayings in recovery, it's also a zen saying. is don't just do something, sit there. Sometimes having the courage to sit there and do nothing is the courage to change because sometimes my tendency is to just jump into action, and that's actually not having courage to change.
That is me being me. That's like, oh, look at you just making decisions based on nothing. Or decisions based on emotional choices. Emotions are important data, but they're not facts. Emotions are important data, but they are not facts. Feelings are not facts. Sometimes my feelings become distorted because I'm hungry, angry, lonely, or tired.
And in those moments, the real [00:27:00] courage is to notice that my body is in need of something and the courage to take action on that. I'm hungry, I'm going to eat a meal, and then I'm gonna see what the next right thing. because when we're hungry, angry, lonely, or tired, you could add other letters into that acronym.
Maybe you're PMSing or something, whatever the male equivalent of that is, that actually means that I need to tend to those things, not make a big life decision. Having the courage to change the things I can could also be very, like taking a nap or eating a meal or tending to my emotional state. And then when I do that next right thing, then the next right thing might emerge, okay, I've eaten a meal.
I'm not shaking anymore. I'm not angry anymore. So now what? What does God want from me now? And that is really to me, having the courage, the [00:28:00] courage to say, oh, something is up with me. I need to attend to myself. and sometimes it's not always those big huge sweeping changes that we make. It's, it's the moment to moment changes, you know.
like sometimes the most profound thing you can do in a yoga pose is like soften your elbows a little bit or soften your knees a little bit. Because when we lock out the knees and the elbows, we lose access to other parts of our body. When I lock out my knees, I lose access to my pelvis. When my knees are too rigid, I can't move my pelvis, which is kind of my center.
Your pelvis is right here in the center. And if I lock out my knees, I can't move my pelvis with as much freedom. If I lock out my elbows, I can't move my shoulders with, which is with as much freedom. When I bend my elbows, I can draw my shoulder blades into my spine, and when I draw my shoulder blades into my spine, I can lift my chest up.
[00:29:00] Sometimes the biggest actions are taking subtle movements, having courage also means being open to new information. because I think that sometimes when we're confident, we think, oh, there's nothing for me to learn here. Or, oh, you know, I do yoga all the time, so this teacher doesn't know anything. I can fall into that trap very easily if I go to a yoga class and I don't think the teacher knows what they're talking about.
Sometimes I have to really check my internal state of like, Hey, there's always something to learn. I could really fall into that trap very easily. Having courage also means being open to new information and not closing ourselves off to, oh, I know better. That's what I've got for you today.
Courage to change the things I can. The first part of the Serenity Prayer, except the things I cannot change, and the second part of the Serenity Prayer is courage to change the things I can. And in the next episode, [00:30:00] just to give you a little tease, Is having the wisdom to know the difference.
We'll get to that down the line. Some fun things coming up. I have a really fun episode of me interviewing Durga Leela, that's coming up this month in January, so be on the lookout for that. Durga is the creator of Yoga of Recovery. Durga wrote an amazing book that I highly recommend, and in that interview, Durga and I talk about the book.
We talk about all kinds of other fun stuff too. We actually had a really fun conversation. There was a lot of laughter, and Durga is an amazing teacher. I am very excited to bring that to you this month, next month I've got an interview with Amy Porterfield, who is one of my favorite teachers. She's actually not a yoga teacher at all.
She teaches online marketing and business. But you would be so surprised how much recovery there is in when it comes to our relationship to business and our work life. [00:31:00] And then there was also going to be an interview coming up with Nikki Myers, who is the creator of Yoga of 12 Step Recovery, which is what this podcast is based on.
I've got some really fun stuff coming up for you this year in 2023, I'm planning big things for this podcast. I really intend to ex pand our listening who listens, and it's just really, these are things I'm working on. And having courage to reach out to people to ask for interviews takes a lot of courage, to be honest, to ask people if they would come on your podcast and, and maybe hear no right, like it might look confident, but it just takes a lot of courage and bravery to put yourself out there.
Having the courage to change those things. and to try new things this year. So yes, those are some fun things coming up. Stay tuned for that. And with all of that being said, Let's take it to the mat. We'll do a gentle yoga practice based on having the courage to change the things we can.
And the [00:32:00] practice will be gentle. It will be slow moving, and a major emphasis on the breath and focusing on sensation in the body. With that being said, I'll meet you over.
Hello my friend. Welcome back. Here we are on the mat for this portion of the episode, which I call embodied Understanding, where we bring in what we were just talking about, and then we try to apply those same principles in our body so that we could really see what it feels like to have the courage to change the things we can.
Let's begin today in Supine Butterfly, come to lie down on your. Bring the souls of your feet to touch and place both of your hands on your belly.
And if it's comfortable to you, close your eyes[00:33:00]
without doing anything or changing anything about yourself, begin by noticing your.
Notice the way the breath moves,
the rise and fall of breath.
Before we can change anything about ourselves, we need to first know where we are.
And so before you can make any major changes or even have the courage to do that, you first need to check in what is my current state? How do I feel right now?
Just [00:34:00] take this first moment to notice the mood.
Lengthen your legs forward, take your arms over your head and take a full body stretch from fingers to toes.
Pull your knees to your chest. Place one hand on each knee and just make some circles with your low back and the floor, like a little low back massage.
And then open your arms into a [00:35:00] T roll your knees to the right and turn your gaze to the left,
and having the courage to change the things we can means checking in with how something feels. And even if I don't give you explicit permission or tell you to do something that you find what feels good in your body.
And that might mean where you place your neck or your eyes, or which direction you look, find what feels good to you, and have the courage to just do what's right and to keep the focus on your own practice, rather than worry about whether you're doing it right or if you're gonna make someone else mad.
Just do what feels good to you. Take care of yourself[00:36:00]
and then come back to the center and roll your knees over to the left and look to the.
Roll back to the center. Come up to a seat.
Place one foot in front of the other for an easy seat, and place your hands on your knees. [00:37:00] Start by lifting your shoulders up to your ears, and then roll them down your back. When you lift your shoulders up to your ears, create some tension, and then drop your shoulders down and do that a couple more times.
Lift the shoulders up, build some tension, and then drop that tension. Do that one more time, and then switch directions. Lift the shoulders up to the ears, and drop them forward. Tension and then release tension. Kind of a physical embodiment of what it means to let go. Do it one more time and drop the shoulders, and then come back up to a neutral seat.
Drop your chin to your chest and just hold here for a moment. Notice where you feel the stretch when you just bring your chin to your. For me, I could feel this all the way into my low back. So this could be a really powerful, subtle [00:38:00] stretch by just dropping the chin.
And then just start by gently moving your head from side to side a little bit,
and then make those movements a little bigger. Roll your head over to the left.
And over to the right and then continue with a few more neck rolls from side to side.
Your chin back to neutral. Take the back of your right hand, place it on the left side of your forehead, and then gently pull your forehead [00:39:00] down to the right. You're using the back of your hand on the opposite side of your forehead, and you're gently pulling your right ear towards your right.
kind of looks like, oh, I fainted.
It's what the action looks like, and then notice the sensation in the left side of your neck when you do this.
Slowly come back up to neutral. Now take the back of your left hand and place your left fingers on the right side of your forehead, and then gently pull your forehead to the left. Left ear to left shoulder.
Notice your breathing.[00:40:00]
And then gently place your hand back on your knee, come back to neutral. I like to imagine that I am a spatula and that I'm scraping a really big bowl. Start to move your torso in some circles, and you could just pick any direction. It doesn't matter. But imagine that you are scraping the edges of a big bowl.
Maybe there's cake batter in that bowl. Cookie dough in that bowl and you are just scraping every last morsel to make sure you don't miss any little bit and you're just using your body as imagery, moving in circles, and you might involve your head and your neck. You might find a good spot and linger there a moment, and then when it feels [00:41:00] natural, switch directions.
You might switch directions again, or you might just find organic movement that feels good to you. Not prescribed, but having the courage to take the movements that feel nourishing, having the courage and the bravery to just do what feels good without always having to be prompted or told, but because it's right for you.
And then come back up to neutral. We're gonna take some seated cat cows. Place your hands on your knees and start by pulling your chest forward, [00:42:00] maybe sticking your chin.
and then round your upper back. Tuck your chin to your chest, bow your head and do it again. Pull your heart forward. Chin up. Then round your back, chin to chest. Take a few more.
You can keep moving your breath
one more round
back to neutral. Straighten your right leg, pull your left foot in, reach your arms up over your head, turn [00:43:00] to face your left foot and then reach for your foot. And if you can't reach for your foot, just let your hands land wherever they land. And if you can reach for your foot, congratulations. But it really doesn't say anything about who we are.
It just means you can reach for your foot . Let your hands fall where they land.
Wherever your hands land, have the courage to just say, yep, this is who I am. This is where my hands fall, this is how long my leg is, and not make it mean anything about you. It's just accepting what is and having the courage to be okay with that.
Big breath in
and slowly come back up. Now straighten your left leg and pull your right foot in. Reach your arms up over your head, turn and face your left foot, and then reach for your left foot. If you can't reach the foot, just let your hands fall wherever they fall. This side of your body might feel different.
Our bodies are not symmetrical. We might have more tightness on one side or the other, let that be okay. Just for. be exactly how you are.[00:45:00]
Slowly come back up and now we're gonna take a seated hip opener here. Put your right ankle on top of your left knee. This is called fire logs pose ankle on the knee. Your shins might be stacked. There might be a large gap between your knee and the floor, and that's okay. If you have a block handy, you might even slide a block underneath your bottom knee and that might help.
Find what feels good to you and you can sit right up tall, you can put your fingers behind you and take a little bit of the sensation out or you might walk your fingers forward to create more sensation. And again, this is just one of those things that you do by experimenting [00:46:00] and having the courage to try and to see what feels good to you.
Be brave to proclaim what you need, what works for you.
We're here for a few breaths, so just continue to pay attention to your breath and how it feels, where you notice sensations in your body.[00:47:00]
Big breath in
and out. Slowly come up and we'll switch sides. . Now put your left ankle on top of your right knee. Your shins may or may not stack. There may be a gap between your knee and the floor. And again, you can use a block underneath your bottom knee. That might feel good to you. You decide where you want to be.
You might be sitting upright, you might have your hands behind you, or you might even try leaning forward just a little bit. Maybe a combination of a couple of things just to find what works for you.
In [00:48:00] order to get where we want to go, we have to accept where we are first. Accept the things I cannot change. Courage to change the things I can. We might need to accept that our hips are tight or accept that one side of the body is different from the other. And once we can accept, then we can have the courage to make the changes and the choices that work for us.
Part of finding that courage is finding acceptance for who we are and what our circumstances are.
But that may come with time, just like yoga pose. They come with time.[00:49:00]
A couple more breath.
and an exhale.
Slowly come up, make your way back down to your back. Happy baby. Lie down on your back and reach for the pinky toe edges of your feet. Your feet face towards the ceiling and you pull your knees down towards the earth. And if this [00:50:00] does not feel good, you can put your hands on your knees or your shins or your ankles, something closer.
But if it feels good to put your hands on the pinky toe edges of your feet, you could move a little bit rock from side to side.
And then try this. Straighten your legs and take your arms over your head and just let your feet hang heavy over your hips for a moment, you. Circle your ankles or point and flex your feet,[00:51:00]
and then put your feet on the floor, straighten your legs, drop your arms by the sides of your body. And flip your palms to face up. We'll take a brief Savasana, just a final resting pose to lie here. Still quiet
Courage to change the things I can.
What does it feel like to rest as a part of having courage? Courage to change your immediate situation by answering to your body's need for food, for rest, for camaraderie. [00:52:00] These are the things that we can change. And then it starts with practice. With getting to know ourselves so that we know what we need.
Give yourself permission to just lie here for a minute or two.[00:53:00]
Take a long, full, deep breath in[00:54:00]
and slowly empty it
and wiggle your fingers and your.
Circle your ankles and your wrists
and take a big, full body stretch from front to back.
Pull your knees to your chest, and if it's comfortable, roll over to your favorite side.
And then gently make your way up to a seat.
Bring your palms to touch at the center of your chest,
and take a moment to notice how you feel. [00:55:00] You don't have to call it anything or name it. Just notice.
Pull your thumbs to the center of your forehead and bow your head towards your heart
In honor of you and me and this practice that we share. I bow to you, my friend and say namaste..
Thank you so much for taking the time to listen to practice, and don't forget to grab your PDF down in the description or the show notes depending on if you're watching on YouTube or listening on one of the podcast platforms. I love sharing this space with you and I truly look forward to seeing you next time. Thank you. my, friend. [00:56:00]
Thank you for listening to the Luminous Recovery Yoga Podcast. If you'd like to support the show, please consider joining my Patreon or leaving a comment and review. If you're listening on Apple Podcasts or YouTube,