100 Things That Make Me Happy

Bright yellow car, Toronto.
Bright yellow car, Toronto.

Achievement of your happiness is the only moral purpose of your life, and that happiness, not pain or mindless self-indulgence, is the proof of your moral integrity, since it is the proof and the result of your loyalty to the achievement of your values. – Ayn Rand

I was challenged by a friend that I cannot name a 100 things that make me happy. I decided to take it up and write them down. Continue reading 100 Things That Make Me Happy

Chaturangas Are More About Managing Your Fear Than Strength

I love clouds, Toronto.
I love clouds, Toronto.

Recently, I read a fitness tip that said, ‘Pretend you are 20% stronger than you think you are, because that’s how strong you really are.’

I found that really interesting in so many different ways.

First of all, this is basically telling you that your mind is much stronger than your body. A lot of times our minds give up before our bodies do. A lot of times we stop because our minds tell us to stop, not because our bodies are necessarily tired or at their maximum. Continue reading Chaturangas Are More About Managing Your Fear Than Strength

My New Favourite Style Of Yoga: Restorative

Sunshiny day in Toronto.
Sunshiny day in Toronto.

I have been a seeker and I still am, but I stopped asking the books and the stars. I started listening to the teaching of my Soul. – by Rumi

I am a very Vata individual, and if you are not aware of what Vata is, it is one of the different classifications/doshas from Ayurveda. You can read more about it here. But the essence of being a Vata is that we are very anxious, high-energy individuals. We need calming yoga styles, like Yin or Restorative, to balance out the anxious, and energetic sides of us. I find that whenever I am feeling too Vata, my mind is whirring at a million miles a minute, I can’t sit still, and I can’t get full (no matter how much food I eat, I burn through calories like a monster). On those specific days, I need the calming effects of yoga to get me back to a level where I can be calm and collected. Continue reading My New Favourite Style Of Yoga: Restorative

Be Prepared For Strong Emotions After Yin Yoga

Random pictures from Toronto.
Random pictures from Toronto.

Do your practice and all is coming. – Sri K Patthabi Jois

I haven’t done a Yin Yoga class for a while now, as I have been at home a lot, and I want to pump up my energy levels through more powerful Yoga poses. I essentially didn’t need the calming down effects of Yin Yoga as much in the past few days, that I have been home and not working. Apparently, going to a 9-5 job can be stressful and Yin Yoga is needed to counteract those effects. But I decided after a strenuous Black Friday outing to Buffalo with my mother that I needed to cleanse myself of all of that crazy shopping energy that was in the malls. I went for a Yin Yoga class on Sunday night at a local yoga studio. Continue reading Be Prepared For Strong Emotions After Yin Yoga

No Need For Grammar In Yoga

BIC pens, Toronto.
BIC pens, Toronto.

The sun shines down, and its image reflects in a thousand different pots filled with water. The reflections are many, but they are each reflecting the same sun. Similarly, when we come to know who we truly are, we will see ourselves in all people. – Ammachi

In recent months, I have had the privilege of taking yoga classes under some amazing teachers in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala, and of course, Toronto. I am really lucky to say that I have had some amazing learnings from all of these teachers and their sequencing. On the flip side of that comes the experience of not-so-great teachers, who have a little bit of way to go before they inspire and engage. I have noticed one thing that I wanted to chat about in this post. Grammar and full sentences… Continue reading No Need For Grammar In Yoga

Your Brain Retains More Than You Think

I love trees, Toronto.
I love trees, Toronto.

The human brain has 100 billion neurons, each neuron connected to 10 thousand other neurons. Sitting on your shoulders is the most complicated object in the known universe. – Michio Kaku

I go to this yoga studio called Hot Yoga Wellness about 3 times a week every week. And like most older studios, they have gotten lazy. They put on the same music CD every class, every week, every time. I have heard the sequence of songs on this CD at least 15-20 times, as it’s been on for at least a month, even more. I usually don’t pay much attention to the songs, or the lyrics, or the tone, while doing yoga. I just hear it consistently in the background, like white noise. The other day I noticed something that scared me a bit. I was lying down in Sivasana (corpse pose) at the end of class. One of the songs on the CD ended. Inadvertently and unintentionally, I started humming the tune of the next song!!! The next song started playing a few seconds later, and I was right on the money. Continue reading Your Brain Retains More Than You Think

Advertising Got Me Again

Reminders of green lawns, Toronto.
Reminders of green lawns, Toronto.

( All prices are in Canadian dollars)

Good advertising does not just circulate information. It penetrates the public mind with desires and belief. – Leo Burnett

I was chatting with a work colleague a few months ago and she was telling me about this great deal she got on blueberries. It was summer and she saw this deal at Loblaws for 3 packets of blueberries for $5. She was so excited by this deal that she bought 3 packets of blueberries and consumed them with relish. The funny thing is that the reason this conversation came up, was because I had just come back from our local Loblaws with a packet of blueberries and I had offered those blueberries to her. I had seen the same deal: 3 packets of 5, at this Loblaws as well. Continue reading Advertising Got Me Again

Redefining Freedom

On the road to my parent's house, Toronto.
On the road to my parent’s house, Toronto.

I have been thinking about this question ever since I came back from our travels. I thought to travel was to be free, but I realized within our travels, that we were shackled – we were shackled to our journey, to our plans, to the car, to our route, to our ideas and ideals, and to our goals. So I decided to ponder on the question – what does Freedom mean to me? What does Freedom with a capital F mean to me? I have used this definition for Freedom in the past. Mike Routen of Route to Freedom says:

Freedom is the ability to live where and how we want to, without the undue influence of societal expectations and without the need to meet external obligations.

But I want to define Freedom further for myself. I want to clarify it more. I want to detail it out for me. Personalize it for my mad uniqueness. Continue reading Redefining Freedom

BrownVagabonder As Inspiration

Sunlight through the dark clouds, Toronto.
Sunlight through the dark clouds, Toronto.

Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain… To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it. – Kevyn Aucoin

It is amazing how the universe (or whatever higher power you consider) sends you exactly the right signals when you need it. Like everyone else on this planet, I have bouts of anxiety, doubt and self-condemnation. I have been blogging for about 4 years now, and I enjoy it a lot. But sometimes I wonder if anyone’s listening to the motivational words that I spend hours crafting. So the universe decided to give me a boost of confidence. Continue reading BrownVagabonder As Inspiration

Using Yoga To Diffuse Anger

I love the clouds when the sun sets, Toronto.
I love the clouds when the sun sets, Toronto.

Yes, I was angry. And I was a little afraid. After all I’ve not been free in so long. But, when I felt that anger well up inside of me, I realized that if I hated them after I got outside that gate, then they would still have me. I wanted to be free so I let it go.
~Nelson Mandela upon leaving prison after 27 years of confinement

My mother recently pointed out to me accurately that I have a lot of pent-up anger inside of me. It gets directed towards the people I love in impatience, angry outbursts, negativity, and criticism. But it is mostly just anger at myself, being directed away from me, in order to make me feel better about the situation.

I hadn’t realized that all of these outbursts were about anger. I used to think they were about a long day, or a hard time in my life, or just normal ways to get rid of stuff building up inside of me. I started reading up on it online. I wanted to see what people said about it. I needed more information on how to beat anger – I could say I am going to stop being angry, but I knew I needed a different tool to deal with it. A tool that would be better suited to my personality. Continue reading Using Yoga To Diffuse Anger

A blog about travel, yoga, spirituality, personal growth and minimalism.

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