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…

Change

Happy October! I hope you are doing well and enjoying the transition into Fall! I just arrived back home to Nashville after 2 1/2 weeks and am in awe of the changes that have occurred in such a short amount of time. The weather is getting cooler and the air more crisp, the nights are growing longer, the leaves are turning vibrant colors and falling to the ground. As I was looking around appreciating the changes, I started thinking about the famous quote, “the only constant in life is change.” Some people like change and embrace it with a sense Read the full article…

Choose Your Direction

I hope you are having a great month so far! The day I am actually writing this newsletter is on September 11th, the 15 year anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center. I have read many posts from friends who were there or lost a loved one and my heart aches with and for them. I am thinking of you. That day changed the direction of my life…as I know it did for many. That day was the day I woke up. Watching that tragedy unfold, I cried and cried and cried. I cried for all of humanity. 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…

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…

Routine

Happy December! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I am so grateful for you and very much appreciate you for being a part of the Yoga Blend family! From an Ayurvedic perspective, we are in the midst of Vata season which is made up of the elements of air and ether with the qualities of light, mobile, cold, dry, subtle and rough. If we are not careful, this time of year can lead us to feel overwhelmed in our minds and rigid in our bodies. Taking the time to nurture ourselves through the practice of balancing opposites, we are Read the full article…

surrender to the now

Happy November! As the season changes, we are changing right along with it so our practices should change as well. It takes our attention, curiosity and a willingness to know what to change and how to go about it. The Yoga Sutra of Patanjali, which is the foundational text for the philosophy of Yoga, is filled with reminders and practices for us to have a more balanced mind and therefore, a more balanced life. The practice of the 8 limbs is an integral part of Yogic Philosophy and is a way to develop the quality of discernment which is the Read the full article…

Aloha

I hope you are having a great month so far! It was so great to see so many of you at the studio last week. Currently, I am in Hawaii about to begin our 10th annual Charka Retreat. It is so magical being on the Big Island and I love how easy and natural it feels to drop into the spirit of Aloha. I’ve been to Hawaii many times and I always knew that ‘Aloha’ was a greeting used in Hawaii but up until a few years ago, I didn’t know that ‘Aloha’ meant ‘to share in the breath of Read the full article…

Commit

I hope you are have a great month so far! As I mentioned at the first of the month, September is Yoga Month which is a great time to commit or re-commit to your yoga practice. The past few weeks, I have been re-committing to my practice in a whole new way. If you saw my practice from the outside, it wouldn’t look like much. But from the inside, my practice is deepening in ways that I never expected and this is such a great lesson for me. Things aren’t always what they seem and when we attach ourselves to Read the full article…

Now

September is Yoga Month…a great time to celebrate and re-commit to this practice we all love so much. Speaking of commitment :)…the very first of the Yoga Sutras is ‘atha yoganusasanam.’ Over the years, I have heard so many different translations of the sutras and the one I heard most for the first sutra was, ‘now begins the practice (or instruction) of Yoga.’ Later, as I really started to dive deep into this handbook for the teachings of the Philosophy of Yoga with a teacher who studied the sutras in India for well over a decade, I begin to have Read the full article…

Mindfulness

I hope you are having a great month so far! I just attended the Symposium on Yoga Therapy and Research a couple of weekends ago and it was an amazing immersion of learning about the research being done in the field of Yoga Therapy. I was so inspired by the presenters and the work they are doing and am really glad I had the chance to learn from those on the cutting edge of Yoga Therapy and Research. The one thing that really challenged me was the incessant talking of the people in attendance. As someone who does a lot Read the full article…

Finding Center

I hope you’re enjoying the Spring. Our lives, just like nature, are changing all the time. As things happen or show up in our lives, we are quick to label them as ‘good’ or ‘bad.’ Once that is decided, we either go towards something or we run from it. In the running towards or away, it is important to remember we’re still running. And if we’re always running, eventually we will suffer because it’s not sustainable. There is a tendency to cling to what we want and try to avoid what we don’t. So much of what I have read, Read the full article…

Cultivating your Authentic Self

I hope you’re having a great month so far! Authenticity is a noble desire that most people can agree is something they try to be or at least would like to be.  Yet, regardless of how bad we want to be authentic and we know in our hearts that we would be happier if we were it more often, it is important to remember that authenticity is a practice and doing something we think is authentic can feel anything but. For example, if someone has been negative and pessimistic their whole life, that is what will feel authentic to them. Read the full article…