Category:

Gratitude

International Women’s Day – Allow Me To Introduce My Sheroes

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In honor of International Women’s Day I’d like to introduce you to my Sheroes, the Dames who inspire me and fill me up.

Although I am normally quite positive and upbeat (or annoyingly optimistic I have been told) there are times where the weight of the world lays heavy on my shoulders and my light starts to dim. It’s at these times that I rely on my shero’s for a kick in the pants, inspiration, a boost for my batteries and a reminder of the bigger picture.

My Shero’s provide much needed insight and inspiration, some of them do this without even ever have been in the same room with me. So who are these amazing women that I turn to in dark times?

Before I get right into the introductions, first let me tell you about the qualities each of them share and why they resonate with me and open my heart.

In order for me to be able to relate to and resonate with a Shero they must be equal parts part woo woo (or spiritual) and uncensored, no bullshit, tell it like it is (what can I say my moon is in Gemini). These are qualities all these women share. We even have a couple “Jersey Girls” in the mix so you know there maybe some fist pumps and F-bombs dropped. Yup that’s what works to open my heart and mind. The harmonic blend of spiritual and keeping it real.

Ok, without further ado here they are in alphabetical order by first name 😉

 

Danielle LaPorte

 

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I have Danielle’s book’s, Fire Starter Sessions and Desire Map (hello life changing) in book and audio book format. I don’t normally buy audio books but Danielle reads them herself so it feels to me like I get my own personal Dharma talk that way.

I also love listening to her SoundCloud account whenever I need some inspiration on the go. I also recently purchased her Big Beautiful Book Plan as well (yup I’ve got a couple of books in me itching to get out). To me Danielle is equal parts mystic, entrepreneur, trailblazer and kinda feels like the big sister I never had. You can watch one of my favorite Danielle pep talks here.

Official Bio

Danielle LaPorte is the creator of The Desire Map: A Guide To Creating Goals With Soul, author of the bestseller, The Fire Starter Sessions (with Random House/Crown), and co-creator of  Your Big Beautiful Book Plan. An inspirational speaker, poet, former think tank exec and business strategist, she writes weekly at DanielleLaPorte.com, where over a million visitors have gone for her straight-up advice — a site that’s been deemed “the best place online for kick-ass spirituality,” and was named one of the “Top 100 Websites for Women” by Forbes.

 

Kris Carr

 

Kriss Carr

My Holistic Optometrist introduced me to Kris Carr when she recommended juicing as one of the ways of treating and reversing some degeneration in my eyes. I had been resistant to juicing because well, I thought it was just the latest health trend. I figured I already ate a crap ton of veggies each day and didn’t see the need to add more (boy was I wrong). Now armed with the resources of Kris’s website and books I have joined the Crazy Sexy Revolution and am a proud Wellness Warrior (insert fist pump here).

The degeneration in my eyes has made a big improvement, if it keeps at this rate I maybe able to reverse it completely.

Kris is a wealth of information on not only juicing and plant based eating but a guide on the path to non-toxic living as well! I also think she is a kick ass speaker and this Wanderlust talk is on of my faves.

Official Bio:

Kris Carr is a New York Times and #1 Amazon best-selling author, speaker and wellness activist. She is the subject and director of the documentary, Crazy Sexy Cancer, which aired on TLC and The Oprah Winfrey Network. Kris is also the author of the award-winning Crazy Sexy book series. Her latest books, Crazy Sexy Diet and Crazy Sexy Kitchen, will change the way you live, love and eat!

Kris regularly lectures at hospitals, wellness centers, corporations such as Whole Foods, and Harvard University.

As an irreverent foot soldier in the fight against disease, Kris inspires countless people to take charge of their health and happiness by adopting a plant-passionate diet, improving lifestyle practices and learning to live and love like you really mean it. In Oprah’s words, “Kris Carr’s riveting journey started a revolution…” Her motto: Make juice not war!

You can check out Kriss’s books and documentary here learn more about Kris on her website www.KrisCarr.com

 

Marie-Ève Bonneau

 

Photo By Yamuna Flaherty

 

I first met Marie-Ève on a bus when we were both returning from teaching a class. We connected quickly and I took her card (I’m always looking for a good teacher to sub my classes).

When I checked out Marie-Ève’s Yoga class I was spellbound by the soulfulness and depth of her teaching. Marie-Ève’s classes (when she’s teaching) are actually the only Calgary Yoga classes I’ll go to. I always leave feeling, recharged, nurtured and held, which is exactly what I need from a class.

Although Marie-Ève is not teaching classes at the time of writing this, due to her diagnosis with Lyme disease, and the toll it has taken on her, she still blogs on a regular basis (one of the very few I read and share) and has soul stirring recordings on SoundCloud. 

I am ever inspired by Marie-Ève her voice and her journey I am honored to call her friend.

Official Bio:

Marie-Ève Bonneau’s calling is to remind others of the truth of who they are and to help them reconnect to ‘center’ — the powerful seat of wisdom and essence that lies within. She guides others in transforming their life challenges and experiences of loss and trauma into the powerful rerouting and growth opportunities that these initiations really are. A gentle and playful soul, Marie-Ève’s presence is often described, much to her delight, as ‘magical’. Find out more at Circling into Center.

Marie Forleo

 

Robert Braunfeld Photography

 

A few years back I had brief a crisis of faith when I realized that I couldn’t physically teach enough classes a week to make teaching Yoga a sustainable livelihood. Yet I had no doubt that I was meant to teach Yoga.

After a small melt down and many tears, I pulled up my big girl panties and decide to re-think how I taught Yoga. I knew I needed some out of the box thinking and some business skills if  I was going to take my game online. Enter Marie Forleo!

I honestly can’t remember how I stumbled across Marie initially but I was soon hooked on her Q & A Tuesdays and was putting her business and life wisdom into practice. It became very clear that if I wanted to take my teaching online (a whole new arena for me), I needed some smart and savvy business training. So When I found out Marie had a online biz course called B-school I pulled out Mr.MasterCard and made it so. It was more money than I had at the time but worth every penny and more.

B-School was and still is (I retake it every year) a total game changer. The course and community are  amazing and it has given me the skills and focus to shift the way I envision my teaching and has allowed me to start creating online programs (coming soon).

Official Bio

Marie was named by Oprah as a thought leader for the next generation and one of Inc’s 500 fastest growing companies of 2014. Her mission is to help you realize your greatest potential and use your unique talents to change the world. She reaches over 275,000 readers in 193 countries worldwide and leads dynamic training programs that teach individuals to succeed in business and life.

She’s the creator of the award-winning show MarieTV.  Her bestselling book, Make Every Man Want You: How To Be So Irresistible You’ll Barely Keep from Dating Yourself is published in 13 languages. Through her Change Your Life, Change The World® initiative, each for profit training program is tied to a non-profit partner who supports women, the environment and entrepreneurship.

With loving yet wisecracking advice, Marie inspires a global community to take charge of their success and happiness by boosting their business skills, shedding BS excuses and injecting massive amounts of fun into each day. You can learn more about Marie at www.marieforleo.com

Seane Corn

 

Seane Corn

I discovered Seane Corn very early in my Yoga journey long before teacher training, when I took her Vinyasa Flow Yoga- Uniting Movement and Breath out from the library. I watched the interview with Seane at the beginning where she shared some of her journey to and through Yoga and the impact it has made on her life. The cords of my heart were struck and I was so inspired by her realness and willingness to discuss the raw and sometime less than pretty moments in life. Seane speaks to my heart in a way than no one else has.

I’m not even really a fan of Vinyasa Yoga to be honest, but I am a fan of Seane! I could go to her workshop and just lay on my mat and listen to her teaching and it would be more than worth the price of the workshop!

I have studied with Seane in a couple of workshops now (and plan to do a lot more) and every time I leave with huge aha’s about my life, my practice, my journey and my teaching. Deep bows to this little gal for helping me stay open-hearted and my light shining bright.

Official Bio:

Seane Corn is an internationally renowned Vinyasa Flow Yoga Teacher and spiritual activist, who focuses her teachings on self-empowerment, self-actualization, Dharma (purpose) and Seva (service).

Since 2007, she has been training leaders of activism through her co-founded organization Off the Mat, Into the World®. Seane is also co-founder of a ground-breaking fund and awareness effort across the yoga world called the ‘Seva Challenge Humanitarian Tour’, which has collectively raised over $4.5 million since 2007 for international communities in need.

Her self-authored dvds and cd set are available through Gaiam, Yoga Journal and Sounds True. For more information, to learn more about Seane visit www.seanecorn.com.

 

Tara Taylor

 

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I was introduced to Tara virtually (even though we live in the same city) by a mutual friend. I couldn’t believe someone this amazing lived in Calgary and I had not heard of her?! I quickly connected with Tara via email and the rest is history.

Tara is my go to gal for clarity. Sometimes my head still wants to be in charge (working on that) and I have trouble listening to my heart (especially when it comes to the big stuff). Whenever I am having trouble listening to my heart and fully embracing it’s message I seek out Tara’s help.

Tara has a way of getting right down to it, and I get more clarity and detail from a 30 minute reading than I have gotten from 90 minute readings in the past.

I now count Tara as a key member of my universal guidance team and a friend. I have sent many friends her way and they all give the same rave review of her readings and counsel.

If you are having trouble “getting out of your own way” and need clarity I cannot recommend her enough!

Official Bio:

Tara Taylor is an internationally renowned intuitive counselor, spiritual teacher, motivational speaker and published author. Also an expert in the connections between ego, emotions, and intuition who has helped thousands of adults and teenagers. She has been featured internationally in newspapers, radio and television and has helped many people through her workshops, seminars and public speaking on the difference between the higher self and the ego.

Tara is President and CEO of Whitelight Wellness as well as Sacred Space, a wellness center located in Calgary, Canada, and co-founder of Just Say Yes Seminars.

Tara attended St. Paul’s University for four years studying World Religions, Theology, and Pastoral Counseling. She also an Integrated Energy Therapy® Master/Instructor, and a Usui/Tibetan Reiki Master.

Tara is one of the contributing authors to the Amazon best-seller Manifesting Success: The Ultimate Guide to Creating the Life of Your Dreams and co-author of HayHouse Publishing’s first YA Series Through Indigo’s Eyes and Becoming Indigo. Learn more about Tara at www.TaraTaylor.ca

So there you have it, my Sheroes! I’m always looking to connect with more inspiring women so in the comments below let me know who are your Sheroes?

My Thanks To You- Happy Thanksgiving

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For those of us Canucks, Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Thanksgiving is literally my favorite Holiday (only second to my birthday which sadly is not actually a holiday) I don’t do a traditional Thanksgiving with turkey and all that, but I do like to spend some extra time with family.

The origins and history of Canadian Thanksgiving are actually quite different that our southern neighbors in the US. I did a whole blog post on that last year which you can check out here if your interested in learning more. Gratitude has been interwoven in the Canadian Thanksgiving from the beginning.

Thank You

Gratitude is a pretty big deal to me and a large part of my spiritual practice, it has been for many years. So I was a bit disappointed with myself when I realized I hadn’t expressed my gratitude to you…my students.

So in honor of  you I’d like to take a few moments, to thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Please take a few minutes to watch my Thank You message to you in this video:

You can see last years post here

Now it’s your turn. In the comments below let me know what you are grateful for? Also don’t forget the challenge from the video reach out five people to express your gratitude for their presence in your life.

 

 

BKS Iyengar- RIP Thank You And Farewell

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Last night while scrolling through Instagram my heart stopped. There in my feed was a picture of BKS Iyengar with a RIP under it. My chest tightened, tears flooded my eyes…no it can’t be true I panicked. It was. A quick internet search revealed that he had passed at 95. Now I suppose I shouldn’t have been shocked I had heard that he was ill and in hospital, but last I had heard his family was insisting that he was recovering and doing well.

Yoga teaches us to cure what need not be endured and to endure what cannot be cured” -BKS Iyengar

Death doesn’t normally upset me that much, even with people I know. I mean we are all going to die. Death happens to all of us after all, it’s just a common as birth. I guess one advantage to believing in past lives, is that it takes some of the blow out of death, since I believe that we are all coming back around again. So why was I so upset about the death of an Indian man who lived miles away and whom I had never actually met or studied with? It’s taken me until today to figure that out.

“When we free ourselves from physical disabilities, emotional disturbances, and mental distractions, we open the gates to our soul.” -B.K.S. Iyengar

I start all my classes with a moment of pause and a guided gratitude practice, part of that practice is pausing in reverence for the teachers that have come before, my teachers, my teachers teachers and so on. BKS Iyengar was my teachers teacher, and indirectly through books and DVDs my teacher too.

I feel the grief and sadness of my teachers.

My first teacher training program was steeped in Iyengar Yoga, although not an official Iyengar certification program it was heavily Iyengar Inspired. I was so blessed to have some amazing certified Iyengar teachers leading my training. Teachers like Margot Kitchen, David McAmmond, Trish Robbins & Valerie Crump just to name a few. These skilled and passionate teachers built a strong foundation for me to grow from as a Yogini and a teacher.

A fierce lion of a teacher, he demanded nothing but the best from his students. Iyengar had an attention to detail and awareness or the subtle aspects of Yoga Asana & Pranayama that no one can top. His teachers are some of the most rigorously and thoroughly trained teachers in the world.

“Yoga is like music: the rhythm of the body, the melody of the mind, and the harmony of the soul create the symphony of life.”
B.K.S. Iyengar

Despite the fact that I have branched away from my Iyengar roots somewhat, there is still the deep resonance of Iyengar Yoga and those teachers through out my classes, practice and being today. In fact if it weren’t for BKS Iyengar, I wouldn’t have become a Yogini or a teacher.

Whether someone is a devoted Iyengar Yogi or not, I don’t think anyone can argue about the massive influence he had on Yoga as we know it today especially in the west. He is truly the father of Yoga as we know it. In fact 90% of today’s Yogi celebrities and influential teachers were in whole or in part trained by Iyengar or Iyengar teachers. If you Have ever used props in your your practice, you can thank BKS Iyengar.

Hi-lights Of BKS Iyengar’s Contribution And Influence At A Glance:

  •  Received gold medal known as Yoga Shikshaka Chakravarti, which means “Emperor of Yoga Teachers, Teacher of Teachers
  • Author of 14 Yoga books translated into 18 languages, including Light On Yoga which is commonly deemed “The Yoga Bible”
  • Named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine
  • Built the foundation for Therapeutic, Medical, and Restorative Yoga as we know it today
  • Iyengar created his own brand of Yoga, called “Iyengar Yoga,” and established studios in 72 countries
  • Iyengar Yoga’s poses and breathing techniques have been adopted by mainstream medical practitioners to help patients suffering from many illnesses and diseases including: asthma, diabetes, high blood pressure and chronic back pain
  • Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (RIMYI) was established on January 19, 1975 , The institute is filled with numerous awards, citations, presentations. The library has 8000 titles in several languages on a variety of subjects ranging from philosophy, human anatomy and physiology, Ayurveda, commentaries on the scriptures, modern medicine and of course Yoga.
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Deepest of  bows and much gratitude to the man known affectionately as Guruji. My condolences to the Iyengar family. My deepest sympathy to all of his students including my teachers.

 

The Attitude Of Gratitude ~ Canadian Thanksgiving

https://nykdanu.com/the-attitude-of-gratitude-canadian-thanksgiving/

The Attitude Of Gratitude: Canadian Thanksgiving

Gratitude is a pretty big deal to me. I have had a regular daily gratitude practice for a number of years, it has changed my life for the better in so many ways. More on that in the videos below, but first a little history lesson.

The Origins And History Of Canadian Thanksgiving

Very few of our US neighbors (or Canadians for that matter) know that the origins and history of Canadian Thanksgivings are quite different from our neighbors to the south.

The origins of Canadian Thanksgivings are actually connected to the traditions of Europe rather than of those in the United States. Long before Europeans settled in North America, festivals of thanks and celebrations of harvest took place in Europe in the month of October. The very first Thanksgiving celebration in North America took place in Canada when Martin Frobisher, an explorer from England, arrived in Newfoundland in 1578. He wanted to give thanks for his safe arrival to the New World. That means the first Thanksgiving in Canada was celebrated 43 years before the pilgrims came to Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Official Holiday

For a few hundred years, Thanksgiving was celebrated in either late October or early November, before it was declared a national holiday in 1879. It was then, that November 6th was set aside as the official Thanksgiving holiday. But then on January 31, 1957, Canadian Parliament decided that on the second Monday in October, Thanksgiving would be a day of general thanksgiving for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed. Thanksgiving was moved to the second Monday in October in order to give Remembrance Day (November 11th) its just due (Thanksgiving kept falling in the same week).

Daily Gratitude Practice a life changer!

Thanksgiving is a time that many people take extra time for gratitude. Have you ever considered what a daily gratitude practice would be like?  My Daily Gratitude practice has changed my life in so many ways, I cannot recommend it enough. In honor of Thanksgiving, I made a little video for you which includes a Guided Gratitude Meditation. Enjoy!

         

The other video I mention