Tag Archives: women’s wellness

Be Love

feb12_2017

Point to Ponder:
Do your thoughts, words and actions produce love for yourself?

iGnite Neissa

by Neissa Brown Springmann

Last week I received a very kind compliment. It was one that I didn’t feel deserving of but none-the-less it was greatly appreciated, especially because I wasn’t having the most confident day or week. And, since being called out by a good friend many years ago and her telling me that I needed to work on receiving compliments because it was incredibly rude when I rejected them, I have changed my tune. You know, the standard compliment rejection goes like this:

Friend to You: “Hi You! Your hair looks amazing!”

You to Friend (response #1): “Oh my gosh–it’s a mess and sooo dirty. I haven’t washed it in days and just threw some dry shampoo in it. It’s so gross, I haven’t showered in three days, I barely even brushed my teeth this morning and you don’t even want to step inside my house….. etc. etc.

You to Friend (response #2): “Thank you! Your hair is amazing too!”

My wise friend explained that compliments are verbal sunshine and they should always be received with a big smile and a “thank you” (no extras needed and no compliment exchange necessary). Maybe it’s a universal female thing or maybe it’s an American female thing–I have no idea, but what I do know is that we are entirely too critical of ourselves, and learning how to graciously accept a compliment is one of the first steps to learning how to love ourselves, be loved, love others and being love. In addition, little ears are always paying attention, so whether you have nieces, sisters, daughters, granddaughters or just other female ears around, we are leading by example and they are always listening and learning.

And so, as Valentine’s Day is upon us and love is swirling all around, I encourage you to practice loving yourself by not only graciously accepting a compliment with a “thank you” and a smile, but by also speaking words of love and kindness to yourself. “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” Proverbs 23:7

Finally, I also encourage you to print our “I Love Your Because” love notes HERE so you can inform those who you love why you love them, or what you love about them. It’s a sweet and fun card that fits great in a wallet, lunchbox, backpack or taped on a mirror, around the house or in a car. It’s super simple yet very effective for both the giver and receiver. And, don’t forget about yourself. Write a love note to yourself, telling your body, mind and spirit what you love so much about them, and then watch your level of gratitude and appreciation for your body and whole self sore! Here’s to loving yourself, being loved, loving others and being love!


Action Item:
Print our “I Love Your Because” love notes so you can inform those who you love why you love them, or what you love so much about them. Also, write a love note to yourself, telling your body, mind and spirit what you love so much about them.


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10-Day Reboot: Delaine’s Day 5

DelaineTeeple

by Delaine Teeple

I started out my fifth day with warm lemon water as usual.  I drink this as I’m packing lunches and getting my kids off to school. I don’t like coffee or tea, so putting lemon water in a coffee mug helps me feel as though I am having a morning treat.  I take a probiotic with the lemon water and then wheatgrass which helps boost my energy in the morning since I don’t have caffeine.

img_3177-1After taking the kids to school, I made a breakfast for my husband (He is joining me on this journey) and me. Eggs, avocado, fresh salsa from Central Market, a slice the Whole 30 approved Pederson’s bacon (no sugar) from Whole Foods and orange slices.

I did some work on my computer and then went for a 45 min. interval walk/run around my neighborhood with our dog.  I always like to use an app like Interval Timer that will tell me when to run and when to walk. It pushes you to keep it up and I need that!

I had meetings off and on all day, so I needed something quick for lunch. I made a protein smoothie with spinach, strawberries, blueberries and almond milk.

img_3193It was such a beautiful day, so I wanted to get more sunshine. After my last meeting ended at 1:45pm, I enjoyed journaling/reading on our front porch.  I loved the quiet time and the heat of the sun on my back. It reminded me to do this more often as it was much easier to think clearly on the porch than being inside looking at the clutter and to-do list. Before I left to pick up the kids from school, I grabbed an apple and almond butter as a snack.

I was scheduled to volunteer at an event at my daughter’s school from 4-6:30pm. Since I didn’t plan ahead, dinner at home wasn’t really an option starting that late.  We headed to our neighborhood Mexican restaurant – asked for no chips and I had a salad with grilled chicken and onions, avocado, no cheese and just used limes as the dressing.

Aspects of the Re-boot I’ve found the most difficult: I have found the social media/technology turn-off the hardest. I have a busy week, so I have had to do some of my work and emails at night. I am really trying to let the things go that can be done tomorrow and just put it away.

Aspects of the Re-boot I’ve enjoyed the most: As I said above, the sun is out and it has felt almost like summer, so being outside journaling, walking, or riding bikes with the kids has been extra fun.

img_3199Tips & tricks that have helped me: I can’t handle the taste of apple cider vinegar. I have learned that if I put a couple of teaspoons in cranberry water with lots of ice, I can drink it! I also got this new JosephJoseph water bottle that keeps count of how many times you fill it up each day using the dots on top (I can easily lose track). My goal is to get to 4 every day with just room temp water.  I then add in my lemon water and cranberry water with ice and I have made my daily goal.

The intention I am focusing on this Re-boot: Sleep! I am trying to get settled in bed much earlier than normal and not look at my phone.

 

Love Your Butt

FEBRUARY 30 DAY CHALLENGE: LOVE YOUR BUTT

Kathleen Parker

by Kathleen Parker

Join in! We are going to LOVE OUR BOOTIES this month with 100 GLUTE RAISES (BRIDGES) EVERY DAY FOR 30 DAYS STRAIGHT!
THAT IS 3,000 GLUTE RAISES BY THE END OF THE CHALLENGE! (Yes, that includes Saturdays and Sundays.)

Just grab a calendar and keep track of your daily raises. It only takes a few minutes to complete 100 of them. You can switch it up and do 50 single leg bridges each side some of the days –  a little harder!

Why do this??

The benefits of GLUTE BRIDGES are endless!
-better posture
-great for spine flection
-great for injury prevention
-faster running, dancing, swimming and just about everything you do!
-fighting gravity at any age
-muscle tone in the back of leg and butt leads to less cellulite
and best of all—a good strong butt just looks amazing!!

Cheers to nothing BUTT strong glutes!!

glutes

Why We Need to Take A Break

feb5_2017

Point to Ponder:
Do you give yourself the necessary breaks that you need?

iGnite Neissa

by Neissa Brown Springmann

“Sometimes a break from your routine is the very thing you need.” Is that the truth or what?! Being one week removed from iGnite’s Re-New Year Rise & Shine Retreat in San Diego, although I was technically working and the retreat was a whopping thirty minutes from my home, it hit the spot. Of course I love my family and my life, but I just needed to step away from my day to day responsibilities and immerse myself into a new scene. As always, I returned home more patient, grateful, loving and passionate. Not to sound cliche, but I was rejuvenated, had a renewed energy and sense of self.

What I find over and over again (yes–it’s the definition of insanity-ugh) is when I neglect my physical, mental and spiritual needs, I quickly reach my tipping point and I don’t like who I become. As I’ve mentioned in previous journals, I have a skin crawling experience and I get resentful and very unpleasant….and to be even more honest, I get mean. I become quick tempered, yell, have very little to no patience and am no fun to be around. Everything becomes a struggle and in all facets, not only am I not myself, but I am a fraction of my best.

Sure, I could blame my husband’s work schedule, as him being gone often and us living so far from family makes taking regular time for me more difficult to coordinate, however this is on me. I know this about myself. In order to get the necessary breaks that allow me to be my best, I must schedule time for me and do so without any guilt. This doesn’t have to be a four day retreat or anything expensive or elaborate–it just needs to be a few hours away from my children, my computer, my phone, my house and my regular commitments.

My good friend and iGnite member Catherine Sanderson recently sent me an excellent article written by holistic health coach, Ashley Berry titled “Why Self Care Isn’t Weak”.  In it, Ashley writes about her journey with healing her sick body, but she also speaks directly to our great need for holistic (mind, body, spirit) well being, including rest, rejuvenation and caring for our whole selves–something that I believe every woman needs encouragement and support to do and regularly practice.

Finally, I encourage you to read Ashley’s entire article, but for starters, below is an excerpt and great reminder of our female tendencies and how and why we need to shift. Also, because you have your calendar out and are scheduling time for you (wink wink hint hint) be sure to secure July 28 – August 2 for the iGnite Summer Escape, an exhilarating, exciting, and empowering girlfriend getaway and break from your summer and life routine. Location with all details coming soon!

If you look at the animal kingdom, you’ll see that all creatures from birds to mammals and even insects practice self-care instinctually. When they’re sick, they eat plants that heal them. When they’re tired or injured, they rest. If they’re social animals, they seek connection when they need it. But somewhere along the way in our evolution as a species, we learned how to override the needs of our bodies and minds, and eventually even built a culture around doing just that. Almost everywhere we turn, there’s some sort of messaging that encourages us to push ourselves to our limits, to hustle, to grind, to work hard, and to play even harder. But where does rest factor into this equation? At what point did self-care get deemed self-indulgent?

Most of us know that our greatest wealth is health. There’s no amount of money that can buy happiness if we’re suffering mentally or physically, and yet, social pressures, both implicit and explicit, make it incredibly challenging to make choices that support our well being. We forgo using our sick days. We pull the long hours, fueled by sugar and coffee. We sweep our mounting stress levels under the rug with alcohol or food.

We use busyness to avoid being present with ourselves because if we stopped and stood still, we might feel the full weight of the overwhelm we’ve created in our own lives.

So the question is, how do we shift? How do we grab the reins and steer our culture to a place that is more supportive of our most basic needs?

By honing in on one person, one choice, one small, revolutionary act at a time. We all have the opportunity to look at our own lives and get honest about the ways in which we are not caring for ourselves. We can start conversations that promote awareness of the importance of both mental and physical health. We can model unapologetic self-care, and in doing so, give permission to those around us to do the same.


Action Item:
Pause and identify where you are not caring of yourself and then start making plans and schedule important time for you.


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10-Day Reboot: Neissa’s Day 1

Neissa Brown Springmann

by Neissa

 

I love starting my day with hot lemon water in an inspiring coffee cup. img_2649-1About a year ago I began adding a dash of Cayenne pepper for extra cleansing.

Breakfast:  Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Rolled Oats with organic blueberries.  I also made an img_2650an over easy egg for extra protein and fat.


Snack:
Yogurt Parfait includes plain coconut yogurt, dry gluten free rolled oats and blueberries. For a very hearty lunch, I will also make myself a yogurt/smoothie bowl and include a half cup of a high protein fruit smoothie with a half img_2653-1cup of coconut yogurt, raspberries and a gluten free rolled oats.

img_2655-1Hydration: Alkaline Water – I recently learned about the benefits of Alkaline Water so I try to drink this giant bottle as often as possible. Personally, I think what’s most important is to stay hydrated, alkaline water or not.

Time outdoors: With my sister, niece and nephew in town, going to the beach is a must. Therefore, we were able to spend several hours at the beach and enjoyed the fresh air, ocean breeze and sunshine!

fullsizerender-229

Aspects of the Reboot I’ve found the most difficult: With every Re-boot that I’ve participated in, the difficulty aspects vary, as they are based upon what’s currently going on in our life. What I haven’t been able to figure out in a while are Epsom salt baths, which I love!!! Sadly, they aren’t on my radar and I inevitably always forget about them. I also struggle with eliminating caffeine. To be honest, my goal is to reduce the amount I drink. The other aspect that I have recently found difficult is technology turnoff. I have gotten in the habit of reading the news on my phone before going to bed. I am so tired at night that it doesn’t seem to keep me awake, however I know that in order to get sound sleep, I need to put-the-phone-down!

Re-boot components I am enjoyed the most:  Surprisingly, I now love body brushing! I do it while I am in my shower (so wet body brushing) and it feels so good to my skin—like an exfoliant! I enjoy focusing on getting good sleep, being intentional with what and how I eat as well as adequate hydration.

Tips & tricks that have helped me: Having large bottles of water or water bottles filled, as well as keeping the cranberry cocktail made at all times.

The most difficult part: My sister and her children are visiting from Cedar Park, TX, so starting the Re-boot has been a bit tricky. I have learned to do my best and when I “mess up,” I don’t beat myself up over it and just continue on. One such example was the stop at In & Out Burger. While everyone else had a hamburger, I had a lettuce wrap burger with no cheese. It was delish!

The parts that I have incorporated into my life: Body brushing, eliminating corn, dairy and gluten, high protein/low carbs, probiotics, lemon water, wheat grass supplements, and adequate hydration.

New findings: I just can’t squeeze an Epsom salt bath in at the last minute. I have to plan ahead and get my kids fed and bathed so as soon as my husband gets home I can hand the kiddos off to him and begin my soaking.

The intention I am focusing on this Re-boot: Hydration

Quality of sleep: Very good

Energy level and mood during the day: So far so good!

Spiritual aspect I’ve enjoyed: I really enjoy slowing down, being more intentional and bullet journaling.

 

Being “Good Enough”

Encouragement from the iGnite Archives: March 2012

jan29_2017

Point to Ponder:
Do you struggle with feeling “good enough”?

Amy Younkman

by Amy Younkman

Have you ever struggled with the feeling that you are not “good enough”?

I recall being in 3rd grade and feeling sadly disappointed with all A’s, and a B in Penmanship on my report card. I thought my handwriting was good, but it wasn’t “good enough.” As a teen I struggled with feelings of self-worth and self-acceptance. I was never “thin enough” or “confident enough.” Then, as a busy Mom of three, one of my favorite free-time activities was training for triathlons. One year, I placed 3rd (in my age group) in a sprint triathlon and decided I could do better, so I trained harder. The next year I came in 2nd place and elusive 1st place was never an option, as the triathlon series was discontinued. Equally elusive were my feelings of being “good enough.”

I now know why God graced me with my three children. They were pre-destined to be some of my greatest teachers. At age 16 and in a fit of frustration, I recall my oldest daughter blurting out “Nothing is ever good enough for you!” Taking the comment to heart, I began a long, slow journey of learning to let go of desired outcomes and needing to control what I perceived as the necessary end result. I passionately want the best for my kids and for myself, therefore I continually struggle to ease up on my expectations and instead, to learn the lessons the present has to offer.

Meanwhile, the little voice in my head continues to taunt me… “Are you really a good enough Mom, wife, friend, yoga teacher??”  I have to stop, breathe and ask for help. I realize I am an imperfect human who, though flawed, does the best she can with a faith-filled heart. And then I offer the rest to God. Doing this frees me from the need to be perfect and in control. Divine design is constantly working through me, and I am only a small vessel amidst a fleet of God’s angels.

My yoga mat is a laboratory for my life. Every day offers new experiments and discoveries. I have found immense peace of mind through merely showing up on my mat, paying attention to my breath, and letting my body guide me as it opens and unfolds in it’s own time to receive grace. Learning to receive is a lesson unto itself. I don’t have to be a superstar on the mat; just showing up, willing to learn is “good enough.”

The beauty I have found in iGnite is that we don’t measure success by inches lost, pounds shed, or winning times; instead we focus on nurturing relationships, finding fun in the every day, and being fed in body, mind and spirit. If we can do that, it is most definitely “good enough.”

I challenge you to look at your own life vocation and ask yourself, “Am I good enough?”  Today may be different from yesterday, or tomorrow. Accept yourself in the here and now, realizing you are a work in progress and God is not yet through with you.


Action Item:
Accept yourself in the here and now, realizing you are a work in progress and God is not yet through with you.


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A Different Kind of Cleanse

jan22_2017

Point to Ponder:
What is there from 2016 that you do not need to bring into the New Year?

iGnite Neissa

by Neissa Brown Springmann

Whether you are iGniting in Austin or in San Diego, both cities have experienced severe and very scary droughts as well as incredible recent rainfalls. For Austin, a fierce drought that started in 2011 ended in May, 2015, and in San Diego, off and on the city has been bone dry, but especially since 2014. When my family moved to San Diego in August 2015, I vividly remember driving to our neighborhood that sits in a valley of rolling hills and canyons and being confused. What I thought was going to be lush, green fields of Birds of Paradise, was instead brown, hot, dry and dusty terrain. What I didn’t realize was that San Diego was in a drought, which is what makes the current rain so extraordinary. Amazingly, the drought has been lifted!

For sure, too much of anything is too much: too much rain can be depressing and too much sun can also have a similar effect, but there’s one thing that’s certain, and it’s that the weather is wonderfully unpredictable, which leads me to the opportunities that the recent rainfall and somewhat crazy weather has given each of us (especially the extreme winter highs and lows in Austin).

For starters, weather always serves as a brilliant reminder that as much as we might like to be in control, we never are, and to quote Austin Meteorologist Troy Kimmel, he said, “I’m convinced that Mother Nature likes to remind us that we don’t know everything.” And thank goodness for that! As much as I often times wish I had a crystal ball so I can be adequately prepared for everything that comes my way, one of the sweetest parts of life is seeing how it reveals itself and the necessary lessons, opportunities and surprises that unfold. Like weather, the surprise can be a gorgeous sunny day or much needed overcast cloudy and rainy day to force us indoors to rest. Thanks to the rain in San Diego, excitingly we’ve been able to wear our rain boots and use our umbrellas- Whew!! Furthermore, thanks to the heavy rainfall on Friday, class was moved indoors and I was able to teach one of my personal favorites that I haven’t taught in San Diego yet– Cardio Kickboxing. It’s always good to mix it up!

Next, weather shows us that like in life, there are fruitful times of great harvest and times of substantial scarcity. It’s never always one way or the other, but instead, life is a constant ebb and flow of “Amazing, we did it, give me a high-five!”, to my toilet not working because Barbie was flushed down it. Yep, that recently happened in our house, because anything goes when you have a sassy and unpredictable three year old who out of the blue makes Barbie her archenemy.  As a dear friend recently coined, at times our lives can feel like a flat-out disaster, and then within minutes, things can shift and we can experience our best day ever. And so, what I feel like weather teaches us is to be flexible, open to change and to manage our expectations. This is not at all to suggest that we should have low expectations, but instead, we should expect highs and lows and rain and sunshine. Weather gives us the refreshing perspective that change can be good, change is inevitable and nothing is permanent. Some days will be fruitful while others not–and that’s the consistency of life.

Finally, rain presents two important roles: it’s cleansing and nurturing. Like a baptism, rain gives us an opportunity for renewal and growth and as a result of the recent rains that we have received, I feel like Mother Nature has given us the ideal opportunity to cleanse ourselves from anything that we cannot control and/or things that do not serve you. Some examples are: a relationship, unrealistic expectations you have placed on yourself, people’s opinions and actions, assumptions, unrealistic expectations that other people have placed on you, guilt, pride, resentment, negativity, control, trying to please others, taking things personally, social media, gossip, busyness, comparison, and anything obligatory that is left over from 2016 that you transferred to your 2017 list that doesn’t excite you. It’s all your choice, which is the best part!

I can only speak for myself, but I am amazed that we are only twenty-two days into 2017. Normally, time feels like it flies by, but for me, I love that it’s only Jan 22. Technically, it’s still the New Year, which means that I have plenty of time to set my 2017 intentions and goals, but for now, I’m going to create space for 2017 surprises by following Mother Nature’s lead and spend time determining what I need to let go of–the unproductive thoughts, behaviors and actions that need to be washed away with the rain and will allow my body, mind and spirit to be cleansed, nurtured and refreshed. I sure hope you will join me! (If you’re interested in a physical cleanse that will also benefit your mind and spirit, I encourage you to join us in our 10-day Self-Care Body Re-Boot, taking place in Austin from Feb 2 through Feb 13. Couples are welcome!!)


Action Item:
Make a list of the behaviors, thoughts and actions that do not serve you and work on letting them go.


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Love Yourself! Inspiration for Your New Year

jan15_2017

Point to Ponder:
Do you love yourself as God loves you?

iGnite Neissa

by Neissa Brown Springmann

Since the New Year, I set a soft goal to find new and meaningful content that would not only challenge, encourage and inspire growth within myself, but that I would also want to share with you. I didn’t take formal goal action, like write it down and visualize finding this information, but instead, I set an intention. Excitingly, the intention started to bear fruit last week when iGnite’s wise and wonderful Amy Younkman shared 4 Yogic Tips to Make Your Resolutions Stick. Amy’s advice was perfect, as it was important and bite-sized holistic information that is realistic to achieve.

Then, more inspiration came again last night in the form of a text message from the always spunky, and never-met-a-bad-day or stranger, iGnite member, Lisa Wade. Lisa shared an article by Simone Talma Flowers that was featured in the Austin American Statesman. Simone is the Executive Director of the Interfaith Action of Central Texas and this spiritually-based article may be one of the greatest articles I have ever read. Simone speaks beautifully to every woman’s heart and tendencies: care giving, selfless, critical of oneself and even insecure. Most importantly though, Simone shares her experience with hearing God and His encouragement: for her (and us) to not only love others, but for her (and us) to love herself and ourselves, like He loves us all:

Selflessness is a virtue admired by many. It is an aspiration countless try to achieve. We often praise acts of selflessness, as great human achievements. Witnessing the acts, the dedication and commitment by others like Martin Luther King, Mother Theresa or Gandhi, we have great admiration for a life dedicated for the advancement of others.

Selfless acts are perceived as acts of graciousness, discipline, humility and hospitality. The person who receives this grace knows how powerful an act of generosity is; and the person who is engulfed in the act of serving, knows the power of this experience, the energy, the flow, the connection to God, to source, to the universe. It is a powerful feeling of blessedness, that makes you want to continue to do even more.

Living a life of purpose, a life of selflessness in service to others, is what I aspired to. Growing up, I saw people like Martin Luther King and Mother Theresa as examples of living purposely and selflessly in this world. I appreciate people in my community who are gracious and hospitable.
Hospitality is another virtue I admire greatly and associate with selflessness. Hospitality is being welcoming, generous with an unwavering expression of love and acceptance, making sure others are taken care of. So, in a recent conversation with God, I was shocked at what He revealed.
Enjoying a few days of rest, one morning after I finished my morning prayers and meditation, I had a conversation with God.

I was in a very relaxed state, a state of stillness, in tune and conscious of everything around me. I told God how much I love this feeling of peace, well-being, love and kindness I felt for myself and my surroundings. I told God how I appreciate my purpose here in this world of loving and serving others. I love going beyond myself to serve and share love, without effort. It is as natural to me as breathing or drinking water. Yet, it is common for me to delay taking time for my needs, and neglect to give myself the luxury of pacing or caring for myself. These unhurried moments of pure blessedness were rare.

What I heard in answer from God, really shocked me. God said to me, “You are here on Earth not only to love and serve others, but to love yourself as I love you.” I wondered if it wasn’t selfish to love myself that much. God said, “No, you are here to love yourself – like I love you. Loving yourself like I love you is just as important as your other life purpose of loving and serving others. You are perfectly made, in you lives my light that can give you everything you need in this life. As you love yourself, you love others more, as you care for yourself, you care for others deeper, as you speak kind words to yourself, you speak kind words to others gentler, as you think loving thoughts of yourself, your loving thoughts of others increase.”

Living this life, loving myself is just as important and necessary as the gift of purpose in this life. So, why did it take me this long to fully realize this? I always knew love is the key, however, the extent of the love I have for myself, has limits. What God is saying to me, is that I need to remove these limits and conditions that I set for myself, and love all of me, wholeheartedly.

As I look in the mirror, I sometimes do not like all I see, especially if I see myself in comparison to others. Yet when I see and conceptualize that God’s creations are perfectly made, beautiful, whole, this gives me a different perspective, a perspective, that I am one of these creations. I am included in that: I am beautifully made.

How am I whole when I look at myself and see so much that needs fixing? Loving yourself is embracing all of you, knowing that God loves you, for who you are, and forgives you in spite of knowing what you have or have not done. God is not conditional. God forgives us, so we need to forgive ourselves. If we think we are on a wrong path, we can always try again; we can make amends. We can start over.

In my conversation with God, I realized that what I say to myself, I say to God. I love God, and I want to deepen my relationship with Him and enjoy God’s love. So I am going to speak kindly, and speak with the love that God has put in my heart.

As I live my life, selflessness, has a new meaning to me. It means I live fully, I live wholeheartedly, I live nourishing myself spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically – so I have more of myself to share with others.


Action Item:
Make a list of the ways you can begin spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically nourishing yourself.


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Four Yogic Tips to Make Your New Year’s Resolutions Stick

jan8_2017

Point to Ponder:
Do you have a plan to make your New Year goals and resolutions stick?

Amy Younkman

by Amy Younkman

While the fresh start of the new year is always exciting, the pressure of being better than last year, setting new goals and resolutions can sometimes feel overwhelming, especially when there is are infinite articles telling us “how to make it our best year, yet”. As a result, I have come up with my own four ‘yogic tips that help my New Years resolutions stick:

1. Satsaunga- Yoga tradition recommends satsaunga, or ‘keeping good company’.  Many of our habits are the indirect result of our social network.  Perhaps the most powerful thing we can do to change our habits are to hang out with people who have good habits and also encourage good habits in others. THIS is the biggest reason why I have chosen to be part of the iGnite team and lead iGnite Yoga and Pilates for the past eight years!

2. Create Good Habits– Rather than worry about your bad habits, pay attention to cultivating what is good for you, such as:

  • Exercise– Do something you really enjoy and feel better after doing it.
  • Be in Nature– The best medicine EVER!
  • Hydrate– Carry your iGnite water bottle with you everywhere you go and finish it as often as possible. Drink a large glass of water before each meal.
  • Eat Like a Real Person– It’s much better to eat three hearty and healthy meals each day than to be plagued by a late night snack attacks that pack on the pounds, or grazing throughout the day and never knowing what you really ate!
  • Put Your Legs up the Wall– Or find another restorative yoga pose that helps elicit the relaxation response.  Your body will say “why don’t we do this more often?!?!”
  • Go to Bed by 10:00 p.m.- Chinese medicine folks say that every hour of sleep before midnight is equal to two hours.  It’s really hard to stick to good habits when you are exhausted and worn out!

3. Visualize It, Believe It!- If you are plagued by a negative thought, cultivate the opposite.  Instead of thinking “Things are not going the way I would like; I’m not getting enough done,” say with conviction “Things are unfolding exactly as they should.” Instead of thinking “I feel out of control”, tell yourself “The universe supports me.” (and believe it!)  Dream boards are a powerful way to bring exactly what you want into your life.  Every year I design a bulletin board with the people/places I want to bring into my life, and they magically imbed into my heart and life.

4. Make Room for Silence–  If a regular meditation practice seems daunting, try just a few minutes twice a day, preferably upon waking and before going to bed.  It can be your prayer time, or your time to connect to your breath.  Clear the mind and put things into perspective before going through your “to-do” or “didn’t-get-done” list.

Good luck and be on the look out for the iGnite Body Re-Boot and some great yoga workshops in Austin to help support your efforts.  There’s still time to sign up for the iGnite Renewal Retreat in San Diego at the end of this month!

Wishing you a blessed new year!


Action Item:
To get the most out of your New Year’s resolutions, keep good company, create good habits, visual and believe what you want and make room for silence.


Member Spotlight: Tammy Saxon

Tammy in boys arms horiz.- DSC_0818.JPG

Roots:
I grew up in Houston and set roots in Austin after graduating from The University of Texas in 1988.

Family Life:
I’ve been married to my husband Chuck for 28 years, and our family of six includes our oldest son Chase who is a Junior at Texas Tech University, our son Grant who is a Freshman playing lacrosse at Stevenson University in Baltimore, MD, our youngest son Reid who is a 7th grader at Canyon Vista Middle School, and our big, sweet 11 year old Golden Retriever, Harvey.

Work Life:
I earned a Finance degree from UT and worked in the finance and accounting fields until I took an early retirement to raise our family.

The biggest lesson I’ve learned through my iGnite experience…
The most impactful lessons I have learned through iGnite are to encourage and support each other on and off the yoga mat, YOU can always make a positive impact in others’ lives, and to set your goals high because you can achieve new heights physically and emotionally every day.

I am most inspired by…
My mom is a huge inspirational influence to me because she is overflowing in generosity, strength, unconditional love, dignity and grace. She has shown me the importance of giving back and that strength and will power lead you to achieve. Her generosity shines brightly through the Golden Retriever rescue that she founded a few years ago where she has placed so many orphaned dogs into forever homes. I recently thanked my mom for building such a long table after sending her this quote that describes her so beautifully: When you have all that you need, build a longer table, not a higher fence.

Something people may not know about me…
I love, love, love polka dots and find them almost irresistible. They are happy, positive and uplifting, and they are represented in many items sprinkled throughout my home.

If I were an ice cream flavor, I would be…
Blue Bell Peppermint. Have I mentioned my love of polka dots?! Peppermint ice cream is a splash of spirited polka dots leaving a pop of confidence on your tongue preparing you to take on any challenges that your day holds. Everyone should start their day with a spoonful of Peppermint ice cream!


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