Yoga poses that will make Thanksgiving remarkably blissful

Blissfully Calming Yoga Poses to Kick Holiday Stress to the Curb

Hello beautiful people.  I wanted to share with you a practice to keep you present and grounded throughout this week.  Here are 7 yoga poses to practice if you would like to take control of your joy over Thanksgiving.  They can be done as a short sequence or selected one by one, holding for anywhere between 10 breaths and several minutes.

1. Mountain Pose

Place your feet hips width apart or wider on the ground. Connect the feet to the ground and ensure that the toes are not gripping.   Spend a moment to note whether you can feel each foot connection point on the ground beneath you. Grow taller with your breath, as you feel the chest rising and falling with the breath. Keep the palms facing forward to open yourself up to receiving positive energy and calmness.


2. Standing Forward Fold

This is an instantly calming pose known to relieve stress and fatigue while energizing the body as the blood flows to the head. Hold this pose with a gentle or generous bend in the knees and shoulders free of tension.


3. Seated Forward Fold

Stretch your legs long in front of you and fold forward.  Take note of how the hamstrings feel nothing that the stretch should come from the middle of the muscle.  Find length along the spine.  Feel free to generously bend the knees. Even resting the forehead on the knees.  Remember this is a restorative practice.  We aren’t giving out medals for the bendiest person.


4. Warrior II

Warrior II is an extremely powerful pose.  Stand tall, stand strong, and settle into your pose. Try closing your eyes. Feel the muscles in the body working to hold you steady as you connect to the absolute power that resides within.  Reach both in front and behind with the arms, stretching the body wide.  Remind yourself in this practice that you control you and your responses.  This is your power friends.


5. Child’s Pose

A restorative pose for instant calm! Keep toes towards each other and knees as wide as your mat.  Gently reach your arms long on the mat resting the forehead.  Try rocking the forehead left to right on the mat for added massage and relaxation.


6.  Legs-Up-the-Wall

If you only have time for one asana, please work this into your day.  I love to do legs up the wall just before bed.


 7. Savasana

Savasana is THE relaxation pose. It truly encourages the body to come to a still position and just breathe, bringing us naturally to a more peaceful state.  Lay down on your mat, the floor or your bed.  Splay the feet out to the sides.  Check in that the lower back is connected to the floor.  Adjust the pelvis as needed.  Drop the shoulders away from the ears.  Tuck the chin slightly so that the muscles along the back of the neck length along the mat or floor.  Breath naturally.  Soak up the bliss.


Bonus: Meditation

Find a comfortable seat.  Take a few long slow breaths in through the nose and out through the mouth.  You can count the breaths as an anchor to keep you focused.  One on the inhale, two on the exhale, three on the inhale, and so on until you get to ten.  Then you can start again.  Start with one minute.  You can build from there, a little more each day.  Remember, this is about your intention.  If you are taking the time to slow down and be intentional, then you are meditating!  Keep up the good work friends.


Just a few minutes can bring you to a place of absolute calm, preparing you to enjoy this holiday season with an energized body, calm mind, and full heart.  Please send me a message if you have questions about this practice.

Happy Thanksgiving lovelies.

Here are a few items I love to keep my practice comfortable.

7 ways to embody gratitude this season

Hello Beautiful People. We have officially entered the end of the year frenzy. With Thanksgiving next week, the sprint into the heart of the holiday season has already started. We can all feel a lot of stress, depression, and anxiety with a hearty serving guilt and judgment about our lack of gratitude and thankfulness.  Below you can see actual footage of me rushing through rather than savoring the holiday season.


So if you are among these people sprinting and/or stressing, I have one encouragement to you. Research shows that attempting a gratitude practice is beneficial, even if you don’t feel authentically grateful in that moment. That’s not just pop-psychology. Yep, a gratitude practice without expectation of a certain result can bring just as much benefit as if we are just “grateful people” (who are these people anyway?).

I have spent a good amount of time researching gratitude practices and their benefitsAnd I have to say that it worked for me.  When I began to regularly use the practices listed, I went from feeling trapped in anxiety and fear, to more calm and content. The most noteworthy benefit for me was witnessing myself feeling less reactive to stressors. Ok, without further ado…

7 ways to embody gratitude:

  1.  Breathe. Check in with your breath. Can you notice it in your body?  There are no right or wrong answers here. The answer might be, “No, I don’t feel anything.”  Don’t worry, that’s normal.
  2. Smile.  You don’t have to smile at someone. You could, but you don’t have to. Just allow yourself to smile a little bit while you sip on your coffee or tea, when you notice a decoration or a plant that you like. It could be the tiniest smile. Note how it feels. No need to judge. It might feel terrible that is still connecting with yourself.  Great job!  I hope this picture of my son, Tobias, helps as an example.Tiny_smile_gratitude
  3. Be present. Place your hand over your heart. See if you can feel your heartbeat.  There is no gold star for achievement here. This is about slowing down and taking notice.
  4. Take a walk. Bring awareness to each of the five senses. Feel your feet on the ground. Smell and then taste the air. Exploring any one of the senses can fill us with gratitude.
  5. Child’s Pose.  Take this posture either right before bed or first thing in the morning.  Breathe, stretch your arms out long, and let the forehead rest on your mat or bed or floor. Roll the forehead right to left, giving it a little massage. This action tells the nervous system that all is ok.  Child_pose_gratitude
  6. Set an intention/mantra/thought.  When you start to feel less than grateful, you could come back to a simple thought or phrase to remind you of what you noted earlier when you were feeling more calm. It can be super simple: I am. Or a bit more detailed:  I am grateful.  I am grateful for my socks. (whatever works for you).
  7. Hug it out. Hug your friend. Spoon your partner. Snuggle with your pet. Heck, embrace yourself (research shows it works!).  If you are wondering what I mean, wiki can help!

Let me know what you think of these ideas.  And please tell me what works for you, especially if it’s not on this list.

Final thought:  Save this page and use it on Black Friday.  Don’t’ worry, I’ll send you a little reminder ;).

Be well, my friends.