How Do I Look? By Shawna Emerick

Even as I start to write this, I am thinking,”this must be amazing, and it must bring hundreds to my yoga classes, and it must strike people right in the gut, or the heart!”. And then, I relax, what’s all the stress for?

Oh yea, I want to look good. I want to sound smart, and I want to impress you with my writing. I also want to look awesome in every yoga class I take, look good in a bikini, look good walking my dog, and look good right when I wake up! Does it always happen; not according to my standards. Alas, that’s a topic for another time, you know what I mean! And yet, it does tie in here, those darn self-imposed expectations. (Add a knowing wink here!)

Yoga philosophy reminds me,”I am of this body, and I am not of this body; I am of this mind, and I am not of this mind.”

According to the Vedic texts, I am, we all are, eternal souls, “jivas”. Spiritual beings having this human, Earthly if you will, experience.

This is why I do go to my mat, why I meditate. To remember what I have come to call, “The Great Remembering”!…remembering who I am, who we all are.

When I was in Malawi, Africa, this past summer, the house I stayed in had no mirrors. In fact, mirrors weren’t really anywhere! After a few days, I realized that I did not care about how I looked. Daily events became more about the substance of the happening and connecting with the people who were there. And then, it hit me like a ton of hearts bring thrown at me; my Malawi friends didn’t care how I looked either! They cared only that I was there; spending time with them, learning their language, learning their songs, teaching their children yoga, and, most importantly, being me…authentic, little ol` Shawna from NYC! Ha. To this day, it brings tears to my eyes. We were all so invested and interested in each other for reasons beyond the material; wanting only health and happiness for all.

So, as Cheryl Strayed (read her book `Wild`) would say, “so, dear reader”:

What are your goals? What do you desire? What makes you come alive? Are you willing to work for them? Make a few sacrifices, let go of somethings? Is it YOUR truth that lives in these goals and dreams? Or are they something society has impressed upon your mind, expecting you to be a certain way/look a certain way? What’s your heart telling you?

Are you ready to let go of how you “look” in order to live your truths?!

It has taken me a long time to be able to say “I don’t care how I look,” and some days I am still a work in progress. However, I am enjoying the journey of shedding my Earthly self and living in the Inner Light that lives in us all. Victory to that Light!

To read more of Shawna’s work, click here.

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Please know this about my blog…

Peaceful Warrior

Peaceful Warrior

“Yoga is like life. Each circumstance in which we find ourselves is like a pose. Some poses are hard to hold, others are pleasant. It is how we hold the pose that determines whether or not we will suffer or grow, and whether or not we will listen to the drama of the ego or the wisdom of the spirit.” -inspired by ‘Yoga and the Path of The Urban Mystic’

This past week I used this quote within my classes. I wanted you all to be able to access these words and those which you ask for at one easy location, right here! So, starting NOW, this blog will also function as a place where you can always come, week after week, to read the ideas and quotes I have used!

ALSO, I have decided to add to this blog a Q+A category! I will occasionally be answering questions with definite answers I know, contemplating questions asked that I don’t know, and opening up this dialogue with YOU! I hope for this to become a forum for us all to explore, learn, grow, and be able to have an online community to connect, question, answer, share…..and give EVERYONE a VOICE! Yea, that means you too!

Questions can be on any topic related to the integrity of living life wholeheartedly! Wonder how to do a Yoga pose? What is Life Coaching? Reiki? What makes your heart sing? What is Thai Yoga Bodywork? What book did you read recently that you absolutely think the whole world should read? What’s your favorite quote? How can I talk to the family member whom I fear? Can a broken heart heal? I think you are getting the idea……

See you on the keyboard!

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The Beginning of Something Wonderful

This officially signifies the transformation of my pencil writing hands into typing whirlwinds (or what I like to believe to be tech savvy phalanges)! My hope is that we stay more deeply connected with each other. Sharing ideas and questions while journeying through this amazing experience called life. I will post as often as I can, bringing you stories, quotes, pictures, videos, and much more. My intention is to keep this blog related to everything inspirational, thought provoking, inquisitive, and calling upon us all to dig deeper, laugh harder, and dance bigger!
I am starting it off with a series of quotes from various people in a specific order, enjoy!

The problem, simply put, is that we cannot choose everything simultaneously. So we live in danger of becoming paralyzed be indecision, terrified that every choice might be the wrong choice.

-Elizabeth Gilbert

It’s not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.

-Roy Disney

All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.


Now is the time to know, that all that you do is sacred…Now is the time for you to deeply compute the impossibility that there is anything but grace.


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