"Love recognizes no barriers.
It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls
to arrive at its destination full of hope."
~ Maya Angelou
I am humbled by the outreach after last week's newsletter. Thank you! I am honored by your courage to connect, and I truly appreciate hearing from you.
If you missed last week's message, you can easily blame Mercury Retrograde. 🙃 And, you can access the newsletter again, here.
Grounding ourselves in confidence, and living into our highest, best, self is big, powerful, important work. Or, more accurately, I would say it's a big, powerful, important practice. Because just like learning to play the guitar, or how to knit, or how to speak another language . . . finding the courage to ground yourself in confidence, and to connect to your heart space, takes dedication.
But, here's the thing. Learning a new language, or how to play an instrument, can take a huge amount of time.
Learning to live into our heart space? That's an entirely different endeavor.
Find the courage to follow your heart by practicing this mudra.
📷: Rhoda Thurston - Lewis 🙏🏻
"You wanna fly, you got to give up the sh*t that weighs you down."
~ Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon
Hello, my open-hearted friends!
Last week I wrote about loneliness and its impact. I'm curious, did you find out what loneliness feels like in your body? Do you better understand how to help yourself through this experience?
If you missed last week's message, or simply want to refresh, click here.
Today, another look at how we are wired for connection and the obstacles that might trip us up along the way.
I am an introvert who cherishes time alone. Knowing this about myself, and honoring this, definitely serves my well-being.
I also know I put up barriers that keep me separate from others . . . even when I want and need connection.
What kind of barriers you ask? Hmmmm. Vulnerability alert: this isn't the pretty stuff. Some of my favorite blockades include defensiveness, perfectionism, judgment, and lack of self-worth.
When any of these barriers go up, and sometimes take center stage, I am sending signals to others to keep their distance. Truth? I can be a force and an unpleasant challenge.
At times, I even default to hiding myself away in order to spare others the totality of who I am. Why would someone want to be around me when I know I am miserable?
Of course, this is typically when I most desire, and need, connection.
So . . . how do we be more fully present with ourselves and others? Click here to read more.
"As members of a social species, we don't derive strength from our rugged individualism, but rather from our collective ability
to plan, communicate, and work together."
~ Brené Brown, Atlas Of The Heart
It's as if Mother Nature decided to deliver on the title of this year's Tulip Time poster. Suddenly, everything is Bursting With Color. Cue the marching bands and pile on those socks underneath your wooden shoes . . . spring is here. 🌷
(We can all be thankful I didn't dig up photos from my Dutch Dancing days. Nothing like dressing as a boy while also attempting to have big hair. Gotta love the 80's. 🤣)
The warmer weather certainly has shifted things around here. People are riding their bikes, working in their yards, walking on the beach, firing up the grill, and generally smiling a heck-of-a-lot more.
Smelling the season's first lilacs is celebratory. Checking in on the "secret" trove of trilliums makes my heart soar. Welcoming neighbors and yogis back to town is a delight, and I am so excited for the return of our outdoor yoga season.
This boost in energy and mood got me thinking about our need for connection.
To read more and learn more about how we are wired for connection, click here.
"The experience on the batey was eye opening . . .
the poverty and living conditions were such a stark contrast
to the joy that each child radiated."
~ Dominican Republic Traveler, April, 2022
Back in December, I wrote to you about the Saugatuck High School Interact Club and their upcoming travels to Batey 106, Dominican Republic.
(Weren't yet part of my email list? Simply want to learn more? Click here.)
So many of you supported this year's trip by joining me at a festive fundraising yoga class or by donating directly. Thank you!
While the ongoing pandemic postponed the trip from January to April, your generosity helped make this year's travels a huge success.
Twenty Saugatuck High School students continued the tradition of fostering relationships and forging connections. This year's project? Helping to build a playground for the incredible kids in the batey.
If you know any of the students or adults who were on the trip, please ask them about it.
"Mainly, I see this trip as a kind of cultural exchange:
Our students learn about both Dominican and Haitian cultures,
and they bring back the valuable experience of navigating
these cultures. For many of our students, it's their first trip to another country. The icing on the cake is that some absolutely wonderful magic happens in working together as a group in partnership with the community of Batey 106,
and it's always an honor to be there to behold.
~ Mike Shaw, SHS Interact Club Sponsor
Thank you for being part of the expansiveness,
P.S. This time between two eclipses is powerful. Keep both ears active, listen within, and stay focused on your intention ✨