The (Happier) Side Effects of Yoga

February 17, 2020 | Yoga

My yoga journey began several years ago when classes on VCR tapes and DVD’s were popular for exercise. That’s how I looked at yoga, as a workout, just physical movement and a way to stay in shape. I’ve always had a certain flexibility and strength, and yoga seemed the perfect form of exercise to use this. As time went on, I started attending gym classes instead of exercising exclusively at home. Mostly these were at the YMCA because of our family membership. I started taking more and more classes, and yoga class was always my favorite.  It became a place to fit my needs, without being the only person who felt the need to be bendy and to move slowly, intentionally.Time moved on, and I settled into an office job – two actually! Sitting at a desk for most of the day, with not much movement, my body began to … Continued

Read More

Making Space for Emotion

November 8, 2019 | Yoga

Ever feel like you’re moving at high speed through life, running to keep up with the endless demand of information, social commitments, family, work, text messages, emails (like this one – ha)? Everything we look at seems to have an extra ad, a personalized distraction to pull our focus in a different direction. Some stress is useful, helps us get out of bed or achieve personal goals. Daily levels of negative stress creates a constant state of movement. There is no time to be still, to let what we are feeling or thinking come into focus. Yoga has teachings about how to use movement, breath, and mental focus to make space for what is happening within our minds and emotions. The simple practice of slowing the momentum, taking an hour to pay attention to the body and the breath can help us shift gears to get out of the stress loop. But … Continued

Read More

More Self-Compassion, Less Stress

August 3, 2019 | Yoga

I was a corporate burnout. I was working long hours, chained to my desk, fueled by caffeine, fear, and anxiety. For almost fifteen years, I soldiered on until I was on the verge of a mental breakdown. I catastrophized at 2 a.m. every morning, certain I would fail. I binged on sweets. Then I finally took a step to save myself. I went to my first yoga class. I knew I’d found something special. I began to find peace in the combination of movement and breath with yoga. I focused on being mindful, paying attention to my breath and body, on purpose, without judgment. This mindfulness brought focus, calm, and clarity in the moment. Yoga was slowly quieting my “fight or flight” nervous system and boosting my “rest and digest” nervous system.Yoga and Stress ReliefI studied the yoga philosophy of self-compassion. The word for this idea in Sanskrit is ahimsa, or … Continued

Read More

Yoga for Grief

June 10, 2019 | Yoga

When my husband died from suicide in late 2017, I was broken and overwhelmed with feelings of fear, guilt, and shame. I lost the ability to function in the world. For a long time, i was too scared to leave the house. My nervous system was constantly in overdrive because of post-traumatic stress disorder. I had nightmares night after night. Even now, one and a half years later, my mind still finds the truth of the situation hard to comprehend. I continue to battle anxiety and depression every day, all while taking steps now to rebuild some sort of life.It was in this rebuilding that I started taking different yoga trainings and also found my way to Dragonfly 360 Yoga & Wellness. Already being a yoga teacher, now I felt the need to support others through my yoga teachings. One of my trainings allowed me to become a Compassionate Bereavement … Continued

Read More

The Purposeful Pause Experiment

April 22, 2019 | Yoga

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make, the better. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson What if we looked at yoga not as a way to arrange our bodies into specific shapes, but as an experiment in the sensations we feel and how movement, breath and stillness change our energy? With that shift in perspective, yoga becomes much more accessible. Tight hamstrings and inflexibility are no longer “limitations,” only variables in our experiment. Other variables can be added like a strap, a block, a blanket, or adding purposeful pauses to allow us to experiment again. The Purposeful Pause Experiment In our culture, movement is prized over stillness. We are expected to keep moving: faster, forward, onward, upward. Yet living without pauses does not allow us to fully live in the present moment. Yoga is such an important practice for our mental and physical health because it allows us time to pause. … Continued

Read More

Watch: Chakra Cleansing

April 9, 2019 | Yoga

Rosa O’Connor guides you through the chakras and explains how emotional imbalances are affected by a blocked chakra. Rosa’s intension is to help the student tap into the physical, mental and emotional realm of the being.Join Rosa on Saturday, May 4 from 2:00 – 3:30pm for a Chakra Cleansing Workshop.  

Read More

The Warrior Poses | Finding Strength To Battle Anxiety

April 2, 2019 | Yoga

My late 20s have felt like a decade of suffering and depression.  Two (beautiful) babies, one soul-crushing marriage and a two-and-half year long divorce took every bit of strength and courage I had to keep moving forward.  When life is that hard, moving is painful.  Thoughts are jagged and exhausting.  I was so overwhelmed by anxiety and trauma that I was basically handicapped and homebound for about six months.   My mind, emotions, spirit and body were sick.   I started doing yoga in 2017 at Dragonfly 360 Yoga & Wellness.  At 27, my right leg was so weak that I couldn’t lift it to put on my pants.  My yoga teacher, Mike Camp, was able to work with that limitation while increasing my range of motion and strength.  A weekly yoga practice over the next year toned me up, physically and emotionally.  But my divorce was still dragging out.  I felt like … Continued

Read More

Mindfulness is the Miracle by Which We Restore Ourselves

March 14, 2019 | Mindfulness

Have you noticed that it seems your life is running you instead of you running your life? Are you waking up tired with feelings of anxiety, frustration or dread about what you have to do today? Are you falling into bed exhausted, with racing thoughts and struggling to get a good night’s sleep? Do you often worry about things to come or are rehashing something that happened in the past?If so, you have fallen prey to the stressors of our modern treadmill lives. Most of us are great at doing, but we have forgotten how to be a human being. We are disconnected from our self, who is craving our attention and presence. Most of us are so distracted that practicing mindfulness has become a low priority. Or worse yet, we don’t even know it’s an option for our well-being.If this sounds like you, don’t wait and let an accident … Continued

Read More

Tapas – Burn Off The Heaviness

January 2, 2019 | Yoga

The term tapas is derived from the Sanskrit root “tap” meaning “to burn.” Tapas can mean either cultivating restraint or burning away impurities physically, mentally and emotionally.  It implies a sense of fiery discipline or passion. Tapas also refers to the heat that gets our heart pumping and motivates us toward change. Lois Nesbitt (yoga teacher) described the heat of tapas as coming from “the friction generated by going against the grain of habit, of complacency, of doing what is easiest” (2009, para. 5). The purpose of tapas is to burn off the heaviness in our bodies, energy flow, and mental processes to awaken the dormant energy within.  You can activate tapas during asana, pranayama and meditative yogic practices. Tapas in Yoga PracticeDuring asana (the physical practice of yoga), tapas can be the simple discipline of making time for our personal practice. It can also apply to the type of practice we do – … Continued

Read More

Detoxing with Yoga

October 24, 2017 | Naturopathic Medicine

I’m addicted to yoga.  As a naturopathic doctor, business owner, wife, mother, and friend, my life can be very full of both happiness and pain.  When life gets hectic, stress can cause anxiety and weaken the immune system, and if we aren’t careful, toxins from the environment, our food and stress can overwhelm our bodies.  Yoga is a great way for me to reconnect to my body and slow down.  If you are interested in regular detoxing, a consistent yoga practice is a great way to keep up.What is a toxin and how do they affect you? A toxin is any substance or thought that has harmful effects on the body.  Toxins can come from the environment, lifestyle choices, or from emotional baggage such as chronic stress and negative thought patterns.  Overtime, build up can result in:Digestive IssuesElevated CholesterolWeight GainAllergiesSkin DisordersFatigueMuscle, Joint PainAnger, DepressionDark CirclesHormonal ImbalancesPoor Immune SystemInsomniaand Chemical SensitivitiesBreathing is an often … Continued

Read More