It’s OK to HISS

Snake

Ahimsa
Practicing non-violence

Most of us would consider ourselves to be non-violent people, but did you consider that shame, guilt, resentment and even disappointment all have a seed of violence to them? When we can’t forgive ourselves, when we put all the responsibility of the world on our shoulders, we’re inflicting harm to ourselves. When we act and speak out of fear we are causing harm. When we gossip we’re acting out of accordance of ahimsa. If we leave fear and self-sabbatoge unchecked we can wreck havoc on our lives! Outward violence is simply the outward manifestation of inner turmoil and fear. Acting from a place of unconditional love and compassion for ourselves is the way we achieve ahimsa. If we choose to run, hide and make excuses for ourselves we continue to suffer.

Another side to ahimsa is one of protection. When I read this short story I learned a huge lesson in my own life. The story here was shared by Judith Lasater:

“There is a famous story about ahimsa told in the Vedas, the vast collection of ancient philosophical teachings from India. A certain sadhu, or wandering monk, would make a yearly circuit of villages in order to teach. One day as he entered a village he saw a large and menacing snake who was terrorizing the people. The sadhu spoke to the snake and taught him about ahimsa. The following year when the sadhu made his visit to the village, he again saw the snake. How changed he was. This once magnificent creature was skinny and bruised. The sadhu asked the snake what had happened. He replied that he had taken the teaching of ahimsa to heart and had stopped terrorizing the village. But because he was no longer menacing, the children now threw rocks and taunted him, and he was afraid to leave his hiding place to hunt. The sadhu shook his head. “I did advise against violence,” he said to the snake, “but I never told you not to hiss.”

“Protecting ourselves and others does not violate ahimsa. Practicing ahimsa means we take responsibility for our own harmful behavior and attempt to stop the harm caused by others. Being neutral is not the point. Practicing true ahimsa springs from the clear intention to act with clarity and love.” -Judith Lasater

My kindness has been taken advantage of more times than I’d like to admit and I have also received unjust shaming for innocent mistakes. I have spent nights beating myself up, succumbing to self-sabbatoge, but this story changed the direction of my thinking so much. We all make mistakes, we misread people and situations, we are human beings. We do things we’re sorry for, but if we are coming from a place of truth and good intentions, without the intent to harm, we can go easier on ourselves. We can also create better boundaries for ourselves when we understand ahimsa, and in doing so, we can protect our hearts and souls. We can create a hiss. Being kind and loving does not mean we are weak and vulnerable. It’s the exact opposite. It means we love ourselves and we will protect ourselves and others in order to honor this place in us.

Our yoga practice offers a great place to meet our truths so we can begin the act of acceptance. Moving through our practice without force and honoring our limitations helps us nurture the body and the mind so we can become gentler and more at ease in all aspects of our lives. It’s about living authentically.

With Love,
Julie

Is Your Ladder Leaning Against the Wrong Wall?


Busyness is Modern Laziness

By: Julie Konrad

In this month’s issue of Mindful Magazine, Rasmus Hougaard and Jacqueline Carter wrote a piece titled, Are You Addicted to Doing? This article sums up what I’ve been trying to say the last few weeks, so perfectly, I had to share some of it with you here:

“Action addiction is an advanced sort of laziness. It keeps us busily occupied with tasks. The busier we keep ourselves, the more we avoid being confronted with questions of life and death… We keep a safe and comfortable distance to the issues that are sometimes hard to look at…With all our activity we believe we are getting closer to something bigger. We might not know what it is, but we keep working at it. It’s like climbing a ladder as fast as we can hoping to get to the top. And someday we get there. We reach the top in the form of a job promotion, or a newly acquired house. But what’s the point of reaching the top of the ladder only to realize it’s leaning against the wrong wall?”

We think it’s good to be busy, to be active all the time. We might produce more, achieve more and even make boat loads of money, but without time to reflect, to rest, to ask questions of ourselves how can we really know what we want? Busyness just moves us further away from ourselves. Think of all the stories you know of “successful” people who also suffered feelings of emptiness and regret. Think of all those having heart attacks and stress induced illnesses as a result of this addiction.

We have things we have to do in our lives, but we have the freedom to choose whether we become action addicts. We can take time to pencil in a few moments to rest or a few evenings with no committments. Take this week to reflect on how busy you are and how much of that busyness is self-inflicted. Take time now to slow down and enjoy the simple things.

 

Mindful Moment for Teens Part 2-Relaxation

Sunday, March 5th

4-5pm

New students welcome!
Registration Required Click HERE

This month Mindful Moment for Teens offers your teen an hour to simply reconnect to themselves in a nurturing way under the guidance of certified Ayurvedic Specialist and Yoga Instructor, Julie Konrad

We’ll be working on systematically relaxing the entire body. Wear comfy, warm clothing and please bring a yoga mat.

 

 

Celebrate Winter Solstice

 

Solstice

Winter Solstice Arrives in Cleveland, OH at December 21, 2015 at 11:49PM

Winter Solstice marks the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, and from this day, until the summer solstice in June, the daylight hours increase each day. In ancient times, people held huge celebrations to welcome the light, it also marks the first day of Winter.

The Winter Solstice is a wonderful time to celebrate the season with your family! Consider making ice lanterns and line your driveway or front walk, make a yule log or visit your child’s classroom and share a story about the solstice (teachers love this!). There are countless ways to celebrate the return of the sun. Here are a few of my favorites. I hope you enjoy!  Be sure to let me know your solstice traditions in the comments below! Let’s welcome the LIGHT together!

More Fun ideas:

  • Make a wreath from evergreens (a symbol of the Solstice) collected by family members. On or after New Year’s Day, your wreath can be returned to Nature.
  • Make your family’s favorite food and/or a cake and put a sunshine on it.  Birthday candles can be put on the dessert. Each family member can light a candle and make a wish for the holiday season or the upcoming calendar year. Once all candles are lit, the family as a whole can blow them out to send wishes on their way. Then call out “Happy Solstice” or “Good Yule” in unison.
  • Ring a bell together to celebrate your connection with the cycles of Nature and to celebrate your connection with life on planet Earth and all of Nature.
  • Light a candle (also a symbol of the Solstice) and talk about what the Solstice means. Ask family members to focus on a candle, and then extinguish. Sit in darkness for a few moments and reflect on the importance of light and of Sun to life on the planet.
  • Feed the birds! Take your family outdoors during the Winter at this Solstice time. Focus on being part of the fabric of life of Nature. Then express appreciation for the beauty of Nature. Each family member then takes a handful of seeds and focuses on the seeds as symbols of life and as messengers of goodwill toward other parts of Nature and then places the seeds in a feeder or grass. Enjoy the light!!!!

Checking in with our Expectations

 

We all struggle with our emotions from time to time, and for some, these difficult emotions can upset the balance of their lives for days, months or even years, robing them of good energy and good fortune. Oftentimes, it’s difficult to control our emotions, but most of the time, it’s our expectations that really effect these emotions. This quote was so powerful the first time I heard it that I had to find it, and read it again and again. Read it a few times, then read it again. Stop and digest what this quote is really saying and think about how you feel about it. The next time you’re feeling out of balance, try checking in with your expectations and see if it makes a difference!

“The emotion you feel is always the vibrational variance between where you want to be and where you are. If you are out of balance, there are only two ways to bring yourself into alignment: Either raise your expectation to match your desire-or lower your desire to match your expectation.”

Excerpted from a workshop in San Francisco, CA on Saturday, July 24th, 2004  – Abraham-Hicks

Celebrate Summer Solstice!

Mandala created from stones and flower petals

Summer Solstice 2

Summer arrives in Cleveland, Oh this Sunday, June 21st at 12:39 pm! Plus, it’s Father’s Day a great day to celebrate. Summer Solstice is one of my favorite times of the year. The weather is finally warm, my garden is green and budding with fruit and veggies, and it’s a time when being outdoors hiking, kayaking and rock hopping in the river with my family become choice activities.

So, what exactly is Summer Solstice? The word solstice is made up of two Latin words “sol” meaning sun and “sistere” meaning to stand still. Summer Solstice occurs in the Northern Hemisphere when the Earth’s axis is tilted closest to the sun. It is also the longest day of the year. Even though summer arrives on this day, sometimes you’ll hear it described as midsummer. This is because European farmers considered June 21st midsummer for the growing season. I’ve read many interesting articles about Summer Solstice celebrations including; traditions from the ancient Celts crowning of the Oak King, to ancient Pagans and their midsummer night’s bonfires and love magic, to Wicca’s healing rituals, and of course, Prehistoric Europe’s building of Stonehenge. It’s fascinating! You can find more information about summer solstice celebrations HERE.

Now that you know a little more about The Solstice, go build a bonfire (if you have a safe place to do so) or simply fire-up the grill, cook your favorite foods, gather flowers from your yard to decorate your home or table, and then, sit back and read one of Shakespeare’s most famous comedies, A Midsummer Night’s Dream! It’s a wonderful time to enjoy the season with friends and family!

Activities for Kids

1) Make a nature mandala

Nature Mandala 2 Nature Mandala Naure Mandala 3

2) Go out on a nature walk/hike and find treasures to display at home, light a few candles and have each member of the family say what they would like to do together this summer.

3) Make Paper Lanterns

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4) Fairy Glow Jars

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5) Practice 108 Sun Salutes!

Happy Solstice! Enjoy the Light!

Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth. -Hindu Prince Gautama Siddharta, the founder of Buddhism

No School Means Family Yoga Tomorrow!

 

Stretching Hamstrings

Please join me February 12th from 9:30am-10:45:am. All ages welcome. This will be a fun, casual session where parents can share the benefits and magic of this amazing practice with their kiddos. Stay for hot chocolate and tea after class.

$10 adults
$5 Kids
Pass holders: one card punch and one child free.
RSVP’S recommended as this class may fill up. Please call 216-501-1465 and leave your name contact info. and number of spaces needed and I will confirm with you.

Don’t miss the FUN right here in the neighborhood!

~Julie

 

 

Celebrate Winter Solstice

 

white-owl-in-winter-78153-983x1024

Winter Solstice Arrives in Cleveland on Monday, December 21nd at 11:49AM EST in Cleveland, OH 

Winter Solstice marks the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, and from this day, until the summer solstice in June, the daylight hours increase each day. In ancient times, people held huge celebrations to welcome the light, it also marks the first day of Winter.

The Winter Solstice is a wonderful time to celebrate the season with your family! Consider making ice lanterns and line your driveway or front walk, make a yule log or visit your child’s classroom and share a story about the solstice (teachers love this!). There are countless ways to celebrate the return of the sun. Here are a few of my favorites. I hope you enjoy!  Be sure to let me know your solstice traditions in the comments below! Let’s welcome the LIGHT together!

  • Make a wreath from evergreens (a symbol of the Solstice) collected by family members. On or after New Year’s Day, your wreath can be returned to Nature.
  • Make your family’s favorite food and/or a cake and put a sunshine on it.  Birthday candles can be put on the dessert. Each family member can light a candle and make a wish for the holiday season or the upcoming calendar year. Once all candles are lit, the family as a whole can blow them out to send wishes on their way. Then call out “Happy Solstice” or “Good Yule” in unison.
  • Ring a bell together to celebrate your connection with the cycles of Nature and to celebrate your connection with life on planet Earth and all of Nature.
  • Light a candle (also a symbol of the Solstice) and talk about what the Solstice means. Ask family members to focus on a candle, and then extinguish. Sit in darkness for a few moments and reflect on the importance of light and of Sun to life on the planet.
  • Feed the birds! Take your family outdoors during the Winter at this Solstice time. Focus on being part of the fabric of life of Nature. Then express appreciation for the beauty of Nature. Each family member then takes a handful of seeds and focuses on the seeds as symbols of life and as messengers of goodwill toward other parts of Nature and then places the seeds in a feeder or grass. Enjoy the light!!!!

Join me on this Adventure!

30BACKTOYOU

November 1st I will be setting off on this inner adventure with Tanya Markul editor and
co-creator of Rebelle Society and Rebelle Wellness – my all time favorite sites for real-life stories and perspectives from women around the world!

CONSIDER JOINING ME!

LIVING WELL DOESN’T REQUIRE A PHD. IT REQUIRES YOU.
The idea is not to find a new continent, but to rediscover, reintegrate, rebuild, recycle, reunite, rewrite, redesign, and redefine our uniqueness and our signature beauty in an everyday synchronicity with our truest, deepest selves, others and the rest of nature.

Health is synonymous with Success, in any shape or form or version. Healthy people thrive in every aspect of their lives — it is the foundation of our greatest achievements, of confidence, of limitless creativity and of longstanding relationships.

TAKING THE POWER OVER OUR HEALTH AND WELL-BEING BACK INTO OUR HANDS.
JOIN US NOV 1

More info + sign-up:
http://www.rebellewellness.com/detox/