Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Make Friends with Pandemonium: Life saving lesson from a White Water River Rafting Guide
Monday, August 23, 2010
"You must be willing to lose in order to win," spoken so eloquently by my friend and tai chi teacher, Willie Lim.
This counter-intuitive statement really holds all the secrets to winning not just in tai chi, but in life. Most people view tai chi as a form of non-impactual exercise or even a moving meditation. Few people understand that this flowing, graceful style of movement is the only art that has never been defeated in combat. Even that statement is enough to make most people cringe. The introduction of UFC and other mixed martial arts fighting styles is sure to create doubt in the power of tai chi.
We can always look to nature to understand truth. Tai chi is considered the water element, and it is the water that carves the valleys through the mountains. Water has power in its persistence and surrender.
Learning tai chi means learning to release and soften when we naturally want to resist. If someone were to grab us and pull, we pull back and have begun a tug of war. The bigger and stronger party will always win. In tai chi, we blend and give our opponent what they want. It's the art deflection, blending and redirecting. It requires training the mind and heart to know its safe to go against every urge to resist, what seems like losing is actually the secret to winning.
Learn to go with the flow of life. Whether your opponent is a real bully, stress, depression or just the effects of the natural aging process, learn to ebb and flow with the ripples. Embrace your opponent. Let the river carry you on an amazing journey. Stop resisting and begin to win.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Lately the idea of a kaleidoscope has been popping up in my head. I think it is the idea of combining colors with light to create beautiful patterns and applying this idea to our own lives. It came as no real surprise to learn that the word kalidescope comes from a Greek word meaning observer of beautiful forms.
I remember, like it was yesterday, my Kung Fu teacher invited me to bring some friends to a picnic in the park. I know it was over 10 years ago because I had just tested for my 1st Degree Black Belt. I graciously explained that I didn't like to mix people and proudly went on to describe my life as a TV dinner. Very compartmentalized. His jaw hung open and I saw a look I had never seen before. Surely, I wasn't making myself clear so I went on to describe the nice way that a proper TV dinner keeps everything frozen separately and everything sits in its own little place never touching the other items. The now horrified look convinced me that the TV dinner analogy was bad. I shifted into the Bento Box. A Bento Box is a nice Japanese meal that keeps the sushi away from the Tempura, etc.
It would take me years to understand that my neat compartmentalized life was absolutely way too much work, very isolating and doesn't make any sense. At the time, the thought of mixing work people with martial arts people or yoga people with family members or neighbors with friends was not even an option. I have to imagine that this was rooted in fear of judgement. But then again, maybe it was a learned behavior or just a pattern that I created and believed was right.
Today, I have learned that being whole and complete means just that. Being Happy, Healthy and Fit means accepting all of your eccentricities as part of you. Allowing others to see you as if they were looking through a kalidescope. Although, the patterns may change with each life situation, it is the combination of colors and experiences that create a beautiful spectacle.
Friday, August 13, 2010
n. pl. lib·er·ties
a. The condition of being free from restriction or control.
b. The right and power to act, believe, or express oneself in a manner of one's own choosing.
c. The condition of being physically and legally free from confinement, servitude, or forced labor.
A picture is worth changing.
Last September I invited a girlfriend of mine to a networking group where I was the Membership Director. I thought it would be a good opportunity for her to get some local exposure, attract some clients and sell some of her Beauty Ammo make up products.
Although we had been friends for a while and connected on a spiritual level, she had never seen me in my "role" as a Professional. Much to my surprise when we spoke later in the day, in her blunt MB York, celebrity make-up artist to the stars fashion, Mary Beth asked me what was with the "Librarian" look? She was referring to my business card and the professional headshot that was on there to help people remember me.
This criticism was really a blessing. For a moment, I wanted to defend myself, but in my heart, I never liked this picture and I never desired to have a business card. Even as a little girl, I always imagined a business card to be very limiting and restricting. Yet, somehow here I was with a business card and a picture of someone not resembling me.
Mary Beth kindly pointed out that it didn't even look like me. She also reminded me that I was making a strong statement to the Universe and suggested I throw away all of those cards and change that picture. Although I understand this might sound a little crazy to someone who is not familiar with the laws of the Universe or does not believe in them, I knew she was correct.
That night I went home and replaced every public picture of myself. Down came the librarian look and up went a look of freedom, bliss and beauty. At an earlier time, I would have thought a halter top, hair blowing in the wind, slight mid-rif showing and sunset were not acceptable way to show the world who I am. But, the reality is I am who I am. I love that picture. Restrictions, rules, whispering and tip toeing around are for the Librarian.
It has been an amazing year remembering how to be Randi again. Being Happy, Healthy and Fit means Being the being who you were born to be. Thanks MB! I love you!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Last week I received an email response from a far away friend suggesting in my travels that I stop for a delicious muffin on my way back from teaching a yoga class up north. Although the timing didn't work out, I enjoyed the thought of closing the gap of time and space and connecting through a muffin.
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Friday, August 6, 2010
“A lie keeps growing and growing until it becomes as plain as the nose on your face.”
~ the Blue Fairy in Pinocchio
We all have a built in lie detector The Story of Pinocchio is a great little tale designed to scare children into telling the truth. After all, no one wants their nose to grow! The problem is that when children experiment with little white lies and experience minimal or no repercussions and especially no increase in the length of their nose, the fear disappears and lies appear.
The lies children tell albeit irritating are fairly harmless. Most children are pure in their hearts and minds. The lies are to avoid getting in trouble. Did you hit your brother? Did you write on the wall? Did you brush your teeth?
Deeper lies like the ones adults tell themselves do not exist in children. Did you play with your Legos today when you really wanted to play with your trucks? Did you play with your Barbie Dolls when you really wanted to jump rope? Children follow their hearts and bounce from joy to joy making new friends as they go.
It isn’t until we get older, that the separation of mind, body and spirit fully manifests. Pinocchio illustrates that when we tell a lie in the physical world, we experience an obvious consequence. This being said, it only makes sense that we when lie in our spirit simply by not fulfilling our divine purpose, something must be growing on a deeper cellular level. It is there that dis-ease or disease manifests itself.
In speaking with a friend, who is a Harvard Medical School Graduate and world class gyna-oncologist, it is not a coincidence that a gross amount of his clients are affluent women who are trying to fulfill the roles of men in this world. As they suppress their feminine side, they develop breast cancer and ovarian cancer at exponential rates.
If only we were so lucky to understand tales and fairytales on a deeper level. The good news is that although, we may not see disease growing, we can certainly avoid any of these spiritual afflictions by listening to our hearts. Our bodies have a built in lie detector. Let it direct you to the truth. Like the Blue Fairy said, “ Now, remember, Pinocchio: be a good boy. And always let your conscience be your guide.”
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Open your blinds and let the light in. The light is always shining, we just can't always see it. Sometimes we are blocked by tangible obstructions like curtains and sometimes by intangible obstructions like negative thoughts, doubts and fears. We only see darkness. Or we only see what appears right in front of us. Learn to open your eyes and witness the omnipresent magic of the universe.
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
A lesson in golf is a lesson in life.......
"You know the longest walk in golf is between the practice range and the 1st tee."
TOUR Academy TPC Scottsdale
I took a golf lesson last week from a Tour Academy Golf Instructor. It was so empowering. I dusted my clubs off and prepared to reconnect to a time when I enjoyed a life of leisure. John was professional, polite and taught an easy system, known Building Block #1.
GPA is a simple acronym designed to improve play: Grip, Posture and Alignment. Sure enough, after 2 hours, my 5,7,8 and 9 irons were sending those range balls soaring like eagles: long, high and straight. A perfect GPA! True Masters create Masters. John was a Master.
Within 2 days of my lesson, ready to retain and improve my game before joining the LPGA and touring the globe, I set out to play 9 holes. First ball off the tee and all was fair, or better yet Fairway.
Hitting balls on a nice flat driving range and then playing a PGA Tour golf course is the equivalent of learning to scuba dive in a 6-foot swimming pool and then getting dropped into the ocean. The range is a LIE.
As I approached my ball, I understood in an instant that golf is like life. Theories are great in books and classrooms, but we don't gain any wisdom until we apply those theories to circumstances outside of a vacuum. Wisdom is knowledge applied.
A couple mulligans, a few callouses, several 4-putts, 9 holes of golf and a damaged ego left me with a strong desire to get back out there and practice. Only, this time, I won't be driving beautiful balls out onto the wide open range admiring my own lies. I will humble myself and play the course. I want the Truth and the range is a lie. Go ahead and reread John's quote above.
"You are meant to play the ball as it lies, a fact that may help to touch on your own objective approach to life.