Welcome to the Putney Moves blog, Begin Where You Are!
This blog is about practicing yoga,the kind you do on the mat but also, and most importantly, the kind you practice when you are far far away from your mat (when your toddler throws her food on the floor, when you back into a tree and smash your taillight, when your work feels like it’s consuming you, or when you are desperate for an answer, a path, or a new beginning).
We hope this blog will be a place we can all visit to find better ways to process, work through, and heal from the effects of the stress and exhaustion inherent in our lives.
Perhaps our bodies ache from the unnatural postures we adopt
to work on computers, drive cars, and slouch on sofas. Perhaps our minds, constantly bombarded by stimuli and distractions, have difficulty focusing, taking in information, and being present with friends and family. Perhaps our hearts feel unclear and disempowered after months or years of pushing our deepest desires out of our daily lives. Perhaps we yearn for authenticity, deep interpersonal connections, or meaningful work. Our culture has begun to take for granted that many of us feel disconnected, fragmented, and just plain tired– we hope to present you with refreshing ways to think about life as well as to structure and live it, to spark interesting and meaningful dialogue in the comments, and to expose you to the most exciting new resources culled from our research.
We hope this blog will open up discussions on how we can integrate yoga and mindfulness into our daily lives: at work, at home, and in the world. We hope to explore ways to release pain and disappointment; to think about how we can infuse our days with gratitude; to work toward repatterning our thoughts so that they lift us and others up instead of dragging us into thought spirals and self-sabotage. We want to take a stab at questions of how we can increase our energy, clarity, and health while exploring the idea of a fulfilling life lived in service to others.
MYTH: I’M NOT FLEXIBLE ENOUGH TO DO YOGA.
FACT: EVERYBODY STARTS SOMEWHERE.
Unless you are a gymnast or ballet dancer, it is very normal to feel tight during your first couple of yoga classes. (Even if you are a gymnast or a ballet dancer, you may find that yoga stretches and strengthens your highly-trained muscles in a new and balanced way!). Don’t worry if touching your toes seems “out of reach” at first (pun intended). The good news is that every ‘pose’ is really a vast spectrum of levels and modifications, endlessly customizable to suit your body’s needs and limits, whatever they are today. It’s also true that with regular practice, yoga is a great way to safely and effectively improve flexibility. The beauty of a group class with a qualified instructor is that you can ask questions, explain your concerns, and get the exact modifications you need to make yoga work for you.
Ask anyone who knows me well, and they’ll answer unequivocally: I love breakfast. Eggs in any form delight me, oatmeal is a weekly staple, and the smell of soft, warm sprouted grain bread popping out of the toaster… I’m smiling just thinking about it.
I realized recently that while I enjoy the thought of breakfast, I haven’t necessarily been making the most of the experience. I’ve been experimenting with easy ways to bring mindfulness into my life, and I decided to give mindfully eating breakfast a try.
It didn’t sound particularly appealing to pay such conscious attention to my eating process. Would I feel gross or greedy? I wondered. Or…horror of horrors… what if I realized I only liked the idea of breakfast? What if actually didn’t love breakfast that much? Read more