Take Steps Now

I hope you are having great month so far! I was talking with someone today about why, as a teacher, I am committed to being a student, first and foremost. There are many reasons, but the one I found at the forefront of our conversation was a yoga sutra that reminds us to take steps now to avoid future discomfort. So often, when things are going well it is easy to stop practicing yoga, doing our self-care routine, meditating, journaling, or whatever else it is that keeps us focused, calm and on track. However, the best time to dive deeper Read the full article…

Relationships

Happy April! I hope your month is off to a great start. I am currently typing this at 30,000 feet and am thinking about the practice of yoga as I always do when writing these newsletters 🙂 A teacher once told me that the best indicator of whether or not your yoga is working is to take a look at your relationships. If your relationships are getting better, clearer and more refined, then you can trust that your yoga is working. I will say, however, when I first started yoga over 22 years ago, my relationships got much worse before Read the full article…

Less is More

Happy middle of the month! The official start to Spring is coming up next week but it seems LA skipped Spring and just went straight to Summer. Yowza! Perfectly in line with spring cleaning, the renovations at Yoga Blend are complete. Thank you so much for your patience during the transition and for your encouraging words of love and support for our new look. It feels so good to have more light and space in the studio. It is amazing what accumulates over 12 years. Clearing the clutter was definitely a spiritual experience. Ha! I feel like we can all Read the full article…

Celebrating 12 Years

Happy March! I hope you are doing well and finding the time to invest in self care which is so very important in order for us to be able to fulfill all of the roles we play in life. This Saturday Yoga Blend will celebrate 12 years. What began as a small glimmer of a dream for me 20 years ago came to fruition in 2005 and now, here we are, 12 years old. Amazing! I am so grateful for this life changing journey and for each of you for being a part of it. As I mentioned last month, Read the full article…

Gratitude

I hope you are having a great month so far and find yourself surrounded by an abundance of things to be grateful for despite any challenges you may be facing. As humans, we live in a world of duality. Regardless if it is an ‘illusion’ or not, our human life is a constant play between seemingly opposing forces such as light and dark, hot and cold, effort and ease, etc. The practice of Yoga is about guiding us inward to align body, mind and spirit so we are better able to reconcile these extremes for a more sattvic (or balanced) Read the full article…

Peaceful Warriors

I hope your New Year is off to a great start! Personally, I have been feeling a lot of tension in the air, like an all pervasive edginess that seems to be affecting everyone. One of the gifts of yoga is we become more sensitive. We become more aware of how we think, how we act, what we eat, what we say, etc. This is great! And one of the challenges of yoga is we become more sensitive. We become more affected by the actions of others, more subject to the pain, anger and fear that people carry around and Read the full article…

Slow & Steady Wins the Race

Happy New Year! I hope you had a wonderful holiday and are ready to start creating an amazing 2017. As we begin the new year, it is a great time to start envisioning what we want our year to look like and setting out a plan for taking action. Often times, the tendency at the start of a new year is to run out of the gates full speed ahead determined to make that change we have been wanting. However, right now we are still in the cold and dark of winter, so it’s best to move slowly and steadily. Read the full article…

Subtlety by Christy Marsden

I hope you are having an amazing month and taking care of yourself during this busy and unpredictable time of year! With all the travel and responsibilities of life, I have been consciously focusing on bringing more subtlety into my yoga practice and into my everyday life. For those of you who know me…don’t laugh! I know I can be full of energy, quite gregarious, rather loud and pretty clumsy at times but I am working on it. It is a practice for sure! I have always been the one to try my hardest to give the impossible and draining Read the full article…

Choose Your Focus by Christy Marsden

Happy December! I hope all is well with you and yours. With all the craziness in the world it is easy to get distracted from what is truly important. We can drift into frustration, anxiety, fear, anger or a host of other, not so pleasant emotions. In Yoga philosophy there is a sutra that I have been using in my practice to help me stay connected in body, breath and mind, YS 1.33. When we drift out of a state of yoga or union, this sutra offers a practical way to come back to center. It offers 4 simple ways Read the full article…

Kindness, Compassion & Love by Christy Marsden

First of all…I love and appreciate you for who you are. You deserve love, respect and kindness. I hope you are taking care of yourself during this very chaotic time. It has been just over a week since the election and I have personally experienced a wide range of emotions as I am sure we all have. I have also been doing a lot of reflection. Yoga Blend is not in the business of politics. We are in the art of healing. My intention for Yoga Blend, as it has always been, is to be a sanctuary for everyone to Read the full article…

Dualities by Christy Marsden

Happy November! I hope you had a great weekend filled with lots of treats and maybe some fun tricks as well! The nights are getting longer and even more so this coming weekend when the time changes. I have always been such a lover of the light. Bright, sunny days that seem to go on forever are when I feel the most alive, productive and happy. However, what I have learned (after many, many years) is that the dark is just as important as the light. As much as I try to keep the light going for as long as Read the full article…

Deepen Your Yoga by Christy Marsden

Happy Mid October! I hope you are having a great month so far. For the past 11 1/2 years since opening Yoga Blend, I have written a bi-weekly newsletter about the benefits of a yoga practice. So, in case you are wondering, yoga is pretty special to me 🙂 Yoga has truly been one of the greatest gifts of my life. Besides my best friend of 38 years, yoga is the longest and healthiest relationship I’ve ever had. This practice started me on a journey of self-discovery over 20 years ago and continues to reveal so much to me about Read the full article…

Listen to the Music

Happy September! I hope you are having a great summer and enjoying all the good things in life. I was having trouble yesterday deciding what to write for this newsletter so I opted to let it go for the day, go to my friend’s record release party and re-visit this later. One of the opening acts said something that became my inspiration. Sometimes we are searching and cannot find what we are looking for but when we stop searching and just let go, the answer arrives. I love it when that happens! The guy on stage was thanking us for Read the full article…

Prana

I hope all is well and you are enjoying your summer. I just returned from a completely unplugged, four day camping trip in Yosemite. It was absolutely magical in all the ways and it did wonders for my well being. According to yoga, a yogi or yogini is someone who contains their prana or life force. All of the things we are responsible for and all the things we do each day slowly drain us of our prana. It is important for us to do things every day to fill back up. Prana is what gives intelligence to the body Read the full article…

Ahimsa

Happy August! I hope all is well and you are finding the time to do the things you love in the midst of all that is happening in your life! I am always contemplating new ways to enhance my practice and this month it is through one of the 8 limbs of Yoga. The 8 limbs are the foundation for creating a life filled with more discernment which is the ability to accurately understand something. With accurate understanding we are able to make better choices which is very important for living a healthier and happier life in this ever expanding Read the full article…

Focus on the Good

I hope you are having great summer so far! With all that is happening in the world, it can be very challenging to stay positive and focus on the good, especially since the positive and the good don’t tend to draw quite the ratings as negative news does. One of the practices of yoga as well as positive psychology is to focus on what is working and what is going well. It is important to remember that there are a lot of people in the world doing so much good. There is an overabundance of bad news going around. We Read the full article…

Freedom and Focus

Happy July! I hope you are doing well and enjoying the energy of summer. As we move into the holiday weekend, I am using my practice to be really mindful of everything I do so that I can relax because a focused mind is a relaxed mind. The more conscious and mindful we are about what we are doing, the more time seems to slow down. So, when things get busy and overwhelming we actually need to move slower which seems counter-intuitive. This is really challenging work for me because I like to get things done and as a result Read the full article…

Share the Light

Hello! I hope all is well in your world. The Summer Solstice is upon us this weekend. It is the time when we have the most hours of daylight so I intend to soak up as much light as I can this weekend. I have started, written, re-started and re-written this newsletter several times. It’s not too often that I am at a loss for words. I finally just decided to write and not worry about it being a perfectly packaged message, because life is certainly not perfectly packaged. I am sure I am not alone in feeling overwhelmed by Read the full article…

Finding Balance

Yoga Blend, Burbank, Christy Marsden

Happy June! As we head towards the heart of summer, my focus is to balance effort with ease (sthira/sukha). The goal of every yoga posture (or asana) is to embody these qualities at the same time. Of course this applies to the body but it also applies to the breath and to our state of mind. Too much effort in any of these areas can lead to rigidness and too much ease can lead to complacency. Just as with anything…it is all about finding balance. I have noticed that I tend to apply more effort than I do ease in Read the full article…

honesty & kindness

I hope you are having a great month so far. The past month I have been focusing on the discernment we gain from practicing the 8 limbs of Yoga. The first limb, the yamas, has 5 observances for dealing with our outer world or in other words, our relationships. The two that I have spent a lot of time on in my personal and professional work and still have to constantly cultivate in order to maintain balance is that of honesty (satya) and kindness (ahimsa). They are the very first limb of the 8 limbs, and the very first two Read the full article…

Habit

Happy May! I hope your month is off to a great start! I love this time of year and I also have to be careful not to schedule too much. Something about the quickening of the earth and all the growth that is happening causes me to move faster, schedule more and forget that the most healing and happiness occurs in the stillness, quiet and non-activity. I have a lot going on in my life. Sometimes it feels overwhelming and I find myself just going through the motions from one thing to the next just to get it all done. Read the full article…

Responsive not Reactive

Hello! I hope you are having a wonderful April so far! When life throws us curve balls, often it is the problem we have with having the problem that causes us more of a problem than the actual problem itself. If we can just focus on what has shown up and deal with it the best we can rather than dwelling why it has shown up or wishing it hadn’t, it can go a long way to reduce our suffering around the problem. My practice helps me tremendously with this. When I commit to my practice (which is just doing Read the full article…

Pratipaksa Bhavana

Happy April! I hope your month is off to a great start. I am starting my month filled with a deep appreciation and gratitude for those who do what they do and do it well. I ended up at the ER last week and was admitted to the hospital for a couple of days with a severe infection or allergic reaction of some sort that took 48 hours to fully manifest in closing up my throat and therefore my ability to breathe. Test results are inconclusive, but all is well now and I am happy to be back to normal. Read the full article…

Less is More

Hello! I hope you are doing well and enjoying the longer days that come with Daylight Savings. I have been focusing lately on the concept ‘less is more’. I can admit my habit of always feeling the need do more, create more, work more, grow more. And there is nothing wrong with that…until there is 🙂 I love life and always want more of it. I am a huge fan of setting goals and understand the importance of striving towards those self- concordant goals as a key to happiness. However, if it is not balanced with savoring what is here Read the full article…

Celebrating 11 Years

Happy March! What a wonderful week it has been seeing so many of you around the studio. I am beyond grateful for this amazing community and feel so blessed that Yoga Blend has become the studio that it has. Tomorrow, March 4th, is the actual day that Yoga Blend opened its doors 11 years ago. I remember that day so well. The mayor came, there was ribbon cutting, a henna artist, food, music, several friends and a handful of new students…our very first students. And it was pouring down rain. My first thought was…it’s ‘raining on our parade’ but I Read the full article…