It’s not exactly ooey-gooey, radiant yoga bliss the first minute on your mat.
Your hamstrings are tight. Your belly is a pit of awkward anxiety. And that burrito you had for lunch probably didn’t help matters.
Last night, you finally made time to meditate; but your mind did nothing but race and plan and fantasize about exactly how you’d tell off your sister-in-law.
And that three-day weekend you took with your beloved? It took a whole day to shake off work stress and relax into it.
The start of things — even wonderful things you reallyreally want to do — can feel awkward. Stiff. Resistant.
That delicious yoga ease takes some work. Precious moments of meditative calm don’t happen at the click of a switch.
We’re human, after all. And it takes a little time, know-how, and courage to switch modes.
THE HEROINE’S JOURNEY IS LIKE THIS, TOO.
You know focusing on connection with the Sacred and self-care are utterly worth it. But starting these practices — whether it’s yoga, meditation, a retreat, or simply cooking nourishing meals for yourself — reminds you of all the reasons you’d rather not.
Starting spiritual and self-care practices (or re-starting them) is a transitional moment. A liminal space where we let go of our day-to-day distractions and enter a magical container.
In a way, we take this first step of the Heroine’s Journey over and over again … no matter how “far” we go. Because the feminine spiritual practice isn’t linear … it’s an alchemical spiral, bringing us back to the same truths, deeper and deeper each time.
WHEN WE HONOR OUR TRANSITIONAL MOMENTS, THEY REVEAL THEIR OWN GIFTS.
That’s why I always begin my retreats and programs with an opening circle. We sit on cushions, placed in a circle, on the floor. We loosen our attachments to worldly distractions and personas. And we honor these first steps into the sacred space — however resistant and wobbly they might be.
DRAW A SUMPTUOUS BUBBLE BATH — OR CURL UP WITH A COZY BLANKET– AND LISTEN TO THIS SHE TALK TO HONOR AND INSPIRE THE FIRST STEP OF YOUR HEROINE’S JOURNEY.
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Recorded during the opening night of my latest SHE Retreat at Kripalu earlier this month, this short talk includes the instructions I find most helpful for the beginnings of retreats (and spiritual endeavors), including:
- The fastest, most powerful entry point into Truth I know
- My personal definition of “mindfulness,” and how it can save us when the world outside is whirling
- How to work with resistance to beginning practice
- Why I think “retail therapy” is 100% self-care (but why it only works sometimes)
- An ultra-simple practice to identify what aspects of the Divine Feminine are your “growing edge” right now
In many ways, we’re always transitioning, always starting, always letting go and beginning anew.
AS WOMEN, WE’RE EXQUISITELY ATTUNED TO THE EVER-SHIFTING, RHYTHMIC NATURE OF LIFE.
When we acknowledge this, honor it, and work with it, we’re one step closer to embracing the fullest expression of our womanhood and humanity. We’re being ourselves more fully. And, in my book, that’s what life is all about.
Stay tuned for upcoming episodes of this Bubble Bath Wisdom seasonal podcast series for more insights and practices to support each step of your Heroine’s Journey.
And if you’d love to spend a luxurious 9-months with me next year, tracing every step of your journey to healing and wholeness with love, practice, and exquisite self-care, I hope you’ll consider my flagship program, The SHE School 2017, now open for early registration (for an extremely brief window).