“When you focus on the goodness in life, you create more of it. Being grateful all the time isn’t easy. But it’s when you least feel thankful that you are most in need of what gratitude can give you: PERSPECTIVE.”
Hi friends, hope you’re well! Last week, during a juicy discussion on the Niyamas with my Yoga Immersion & Mentorship students, we concluded that gratitude – the act of wanting and appreciating what we have in the moment – underpins all other practices for finding fulfillment and contentment. Research in this field. agrees – every book I have ever read on the science of happiness points to gratitude as a critical component to reducing fear/anxiety and experiencing true joy.
Most of us know this, and do feel grateful for our lives when we stop to think about it….the problem is, we rarely take the time to do that, or share our gratitude with others. I confess I don’t consistently share with my family what brought a smile to my face that day or how grateful I am to have them in my life. I am often too distracted to savor my food or too focused on picking up the constant mess in my house to delight in the fact that I have a lovely home where two healthy and energetic little boys live (hence the mess!) Instead of appreciating how awesome and strong my body is at 37, I tend to only see the bags under my eyes in the morning, the gray peeking under my highlights when I brush my hair, and the small gap between my abs that still hasn’t fully closed since baby M was born. It’s so much easier to focus on what’s not right, what we wish were different or better, than to find full satisfaction with the way things are – right here, right now.
Well, I want to get serious about changing that – not only for my sake, but because it’s what I hope to model for my boys and inspire in my students. I believe changing habits takes both commitment and accountability, and can be far more effective (and enjoyable) when practiced in community. So, consider yourself officially invited to participate in Yogaleena’s 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge! Starting Oct 28, which is exactly 30 days before Thanksgiving, I challenge us to set aside time every day to jot down what we’re grateful for, share it with others, and “pay it forward.”
The third “ask” speaks to the fact that gratitude doesn’t always have to be a passive practice. Taking time to serve others is a powerful way to really appreciate your own gifts, talents, and life. We have several donation classes on our schedule, supporting a variety of organizations, that might be the perfect opportunity for you to actively practice gratitude:
Sweat in Pink: One of my wonderful students and her sister organize a fitness event once/year to raise money for breast cancer research in memory of their young cousin, who passed away from this heartbreaking disease. This year, I am honored to be leading a virtual Flow class on Saturday, Oct 31 at 9:30 to support this cause. Tickets are $15, please register here to join us: Sweat in Pink
Donation Flow at Eastern Glades – Sundays at 9am (starting Nov 1): Two of our amazing Yogaleena School Gradates will be leading a weekly flow class every Sunday in support of a different organization each month.
Gentle & Slow Flow Yoga at the Houston Arboretum – T/TH 8:30am: Yogaleena has officially partnered with the Houston Arboretum, and 50% proceeds (and 100% of parking) for these outdoor classes go towards their conservancy efforts!
So…are you in?
Here’s the official scoop on taking the challenge:
Dates: October 28- November 26
- Write 3-5 things you are grateful for each day
- Share one of these at least once/week on Instagram and tag @yogaleenastudio and #30daysofgratitude
- Join one of our donation-based classes (listed above) once per week and help us support our community!
The prize: We will be celebrating the end of the challenge on Thanksgiving day with a beautiful outdoor flow at the Houston Arboretum! If you have completed all challenge requirements and attend this class, you’ll be entered in a raffle to win sweet goodies (including super cute things from our boutique!)
I truly hope you will join me in this challenge. Thank you as always, from the bottom of my heart, for being part of the Yogaleena family.