we must choose stillness.

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Collectively, we don’t know the answers yet, which means that individually, we must be part of the answers.

But first, we must learn to listen very carefully to the fear that tells us we are alone and we should be afraid and we will not make it through this tumult strong enough to find a new normal. We must hear this, so we can choose to disregard it.

We must calm this overactive, anxious, panicked voice by saying, “I hear you fear, but you are not Truth; you are not the way of Light and depth and love. I choose connection and kindness and quiet. I choose to stay grounded in what I know is Life Giving and what brings me closer to Wholeness.”

We choose this by sitting with our fear and our hope and our panic and the fullness of what is, until we feel grounded in stillness. We choose this stillness because this stillness is the place where inspiration and hope and answers emerge.

According to the yoga tradition, we develop inner stillness through Meditation, Breath and Community.

Learn the Guided Meditation Technique called Body Scan to ground into the present moment when you most need it.

Body Scan Guided Meditation

Learn the Yoga Breathing Teaching called Extended Exhale to ground into stillness when you most need it.

Extended Exhale Breathing: Vishama Vritti Pranayama

Learn more and practice additional Yoga Breathing Techniques Here:  The Power of Pranayama

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1 month virutal class event pic

Move and meditate in community in Westport Yoga KC’s Online Classroom. We provide live, guided, and personalized yoga classes delivered via ZOOM Conferencing.

Lisa’s Yoga Class Teaching schedule: April 2020

Monday 12 pm Hatha Yoga
Monday 6 pm Gentle Flow and Restore Yoga
Monday 7:30 pm Vin/ Yin Yoga

Tuesday 6 pm Vinyasa Yoga

Wednesday 6 pm Restore and Meditate
Wednesday 7:30 pm Vin/Yin

Thursday 4:30 pm “Meditate Your Weight” Series: Yoga, Meditation and Book Club (SOLD OUT)

Friday 4/10/20 6 pm: Spring Revival Yoga Workshop 

Lisa’s signature style of Myofascial Release, Breath-Based Flow and Deeply Healing Yin Yoga to restore the liver and gallbladder meridians from Traditional Chinese Medicine and tune you up for spring. Please pre-enroll online at Westport Yoga KC

Saturday 9am Hatha Yoga
Saturday 10:30 am Vinyasa

Sunday April 5, 9 am Meditation and Myofascial Release. Please pre-enroll online at Westport Yoga KC

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All classes held in our Online Yoga Classroom courtesy of ZOOM and Westport Yoga KC.  Invest in your Tuition and Enroll online: WestportYogaKansasCity.com
1 month virutal class event pic

Spring Revivial April 2020

This class will be taught via our ONLINE CLASSROOM and ZOOM. Enroll to reserve your space. Spring Revival Yoga Friday April 10, 2020, 6-8 pm. Spring energy is contagious and invigorating.; but we can also feel out of balance. This class will support your energy for Spring using wisdom from the Traditional Chinese Meridian Theory; your practice will support the gallbladder meridian line and the grounding energy of the wood element. Join Lisa Ash Drackert for her signature class style: Myofascial Release, intelligent breath-based flow and deeply healing Yin Yoga followed by Meditation and Guided Relaxation to support a seamless transition into spring.

Enjoyed these teachings? Consider partnering with Lisa so she can continue creating quality resources. Thank you!

 

Pranayama Guided Teachings

$4.00

 

contentment amidst COVID.

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Feeling contentment during this time of global unease, disease and angst that is the COVID disaster of 2020 is patently ludicrous.

To me, feeling contentment happens when I’m resting in a lawn chair watching aspens glitter, drinking coffee after a long trail hike. Or hunkering down on the couch with RussellClive, a chai and Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire, spending the afternoon going nowhere.

In these scenarios, of course, I have nothing to worry about. No pressing deadlines, no new website platforms to learn in order to keep my business afloat because my entire city is locked in their homes, terrified to touch anything or anyone. No parents or grandparents who could get sick. No friends who have suddenly lost their source of income just weeks before having their second baby. No cell phone to continually check the unnerving minute-by-minute alteration of the Rules of Coronavirus. In these contentment daydreams, I am a veritable fortress of ease.

This is not happening so far in 2020. I’m not feeling contentment. I’m feeling sometimes like the roof is falling in and other times like this whole thing is an inside joke that I’m smiling frantically along to, not unlike my mentor Michael Scott.

In Yoga Philosophy, inner contentment is one of the five core personal practices, called niyamas. You can read more about core Yoga Philosophy on my page key yoga learnings.

The Yoga Sutra written about contentment (santosha) is translated as, “From contentment one gains supreme happiness.” (II.41)

Which, at the moment, sounds naive and opaque and wildly unhelpful. But as a yogi and spiritual seeker, my responsibility is to pause and discern: where is there wisdom in this?

Here is the wisdom:

If my primary aim is to feel contentment, I’m doomed. There will always be something newer, shinier, bigger and better promising “supreme happiness!” Feelings are fleeting unreliable (you nailed it with Inside Out, Pixar), and suffering is an inevitable part of the human experience.

However, if my primary aim is to be contentment, secure in my worth, my deepest connection to Source, my commitment to my vision of a healed world and to my values of compassion and graciousness and authenticity…. no matter what… I might have a chance.

Contentment cannot be based on what I own or my hierarchy on the corporate restructuring chart or what plaques I hang on the wall or how many people look up to me or how relevant I am on social media. The minute I start attaching my worth, my identity, my sense of fulfillment and sense of self to any external situation, it can be taken away. Suffering will surely follow.

Contentment has to be based on who I am and how I forge a refuge of reverence for the incredible gift that is my next breath.

Contentment isn’t a feeling. Contentment is a Knowing. It’s a deep inner knowing that, even in the midst of suffering, I’ve chosen to be grateful that I am alive in this present moment. And to act with compassion in this present moment. And to speak with integrity and clarity, and counsel wisely and care deeply and choose authentically in this present moment.

People flow in and out of our lives, possessions come and go, even opinions and ideals change over time. In other words, the outer world is in constant flux; yoga says that the only conceivable way to feel anchored in contentment is to remember that our depth, meaning and deepest Self orbits not around these changing circumstances (prakriti) but is anchored to the permanent light of awareness and Creative Source that sustains all living things. That, readers, is santosha. 

I offer you this Santosha Guided Meditation as a practice of reverence and refuge. Please return to it often and share it with loved ones.

Santosha Guided Meditation


Guided Meditation Teachings

Love these Resources? Consider partnering with Lisa to continue providing valuable teachings that promote hope, health and happiness here:

$4.00

 

learn more about santosha:

the contents of my Soul: santosha

is your cup too big?

every day a gift: santosha

not needing more: santosha

access additional Guided Meditations for Stress Relief:

guided meditations

and learn about the power of breathing techniques to mitigate stress:

yoga breathing techniques and pranayama exercises

 

what we will say when this is over:

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What we will say when this is over:

“We read books and we listened to stories and we listened to each other.
We rested and we waited and the ground turned green and the daylillies bloomed secretly overnight.

We looked lovingly into each other‘s eyes and saw each other in stillness for the first time in many weeks or many years.

We took walks together as families and we cuddled our pets as we reassured those that we love that everything would be ok.

We took a look at what we loved, and who we loved and how we supported each other. We thought about the impact of our purchases, our spending, our investments, our time.

We consciously decided how to support businesses and people that we cared about.

We took a hard look at what we valued and how we lived by these values. We made decisions to be more mindful with our time in the future. And move a little slower and appreciate a little more.

We valued our health.

We sat and we watched the rain fall and we ate nourishing meals and drank copious amounts of coffee.

We reached out to each other and we said, how can I help? And we meant it.
We were kind and gracious. When an appointment was cancelled or an event was postponed we said, I understand; stay safe and stay well.

We paid attention to what we were buying, where we were buying it, how we were using it, and what we could do without. We chose to share instead of to hoard.

We said thank you. We meant it.

We said, we are in this together.”


Readers and Seekers:
We are in this together.  Listen to this Podcast Interview with Lisa about the benefits of Yoga as a Spiritual Practice. Take a moment to re-set and ground yourself. Now is the time to practice your yoga.
LAD PODCAST PIC HOLY GROUNDS sq

PROJECT ZION PODCAST

If this was of value to you, please consider Partnering with Lisa so she can continue creating content that supports mental, emotional and spiritual health. Invest via PayPal:

Partner Investment: $5

 

meditate your weight.

Meditation may be the key to sticking to a healthy eating plan, accurately perceiving your body’s hunger cues and staying at your optimal weight without a diet plan. Research shows that your chance of staying at your optimal weight after weight loss programs of increases when you incorporate relaxing breathing techniques and meditation practices into your daily routine.

When you’re meditating, you’re honing your ability to perceive hunger cues, mitigating stress hormones that lead to weight gain, strengthening your resolve to make healthier food choices, and enhancing your self-image.

The Mindfulness Connection:

Mindfulness is the ability to identify and examine the individual thoughts that pass through your consciousness. It’s integral to the practice of meditation, where the goal is not to stop or judge your thoughts, but to notice them enough to choose healthy thoughts over unhealthy thoughts.

In her book, Meditate Your Weight, Tiffany Cruikshank founder of Yoga Medicine, posits that your most helpful ally in weight loss is your mind-body connection, which is significantly strengthened by meditation and mindfulness practices. “Mind-body connection is essential for long term permanent weight and health changes. From research we know that the small changes we can commit to over time are much more impactful on our long-term health; the mindfulness we bring to our daily habits can be life changing,” Cruikshank explains. “A non-judgmental awareness [is] additional protection that allows us to be human and imperfect along the way, safeguarding us from the roller coaster of falling off the wagon of our extreme health plans.”

This program with Lisa Ash Drackert, Yoga Medicine Therapeutic Specialist, includes a Book Study of Meditate Your Weight by yoga teacher and health expert Tiffany Cruikshank as well as detailed yoga, breathing, and meditation instruction to help you approach your health with confidence and a sense of empowerment.

“Meditate Your Weight” 5 Week Series and Book Study

Thursdays at 4:30 beginning April 2, 2020

Meditate Your Weight April 2020

Meet for book discussion, yoga and meditation in a supportive and encouraging accountability group on Thursday afternoons in April at Westport Yoga KC: April 2, April 9, April 16, April 23, April 30th, 2020.

Your Investment Includes:

  • 5 Specialized Classes with book discussion, yoga and meditation in a supportive environment

  • Your own copy of Tiffany Cruikshank’s book Meditate Your Weight

  • Complimentary attendance at 2 regularly scheduled yoga classes at Westport Yoga KC

  • 15% off enrollment in Special Events and Workshops at Westport Yoga KC April- May 2020

  • 15% Private Yoga and Life Coaching Sessions booked with Lisa

  • Weekly email literature and encouragement to help keep you focused on making positive mental and physical health changes in your life!

Investment: $95

wisdom books for 2020.

Every year, I immerse myself in the self-help section of my favorite neighborhood bookstore and buy anything and everything that calls to me from its shelf. If this sounds a little woo-woo, let’s just be honest: I choose a book by its cover.

Every year, these books lay in wait in my “ready to read” stack until the exact right day when I need to hear what’s inside. I’m not exaggerating. I’ll pick up a book one morning in January, decide it’s boring… and put it back until June. The second time around, I won’t be able to put it down. Every sentence on every page is a little golden nugget of wisdom.

I believe that wisdom is always waiting to be revealed when I am ready to receive its message.

In Yoga Philosophy, wisdom is called Ishwara. This iteration of wisdom is a collective, omnipresent, creative source of highest Truth and Light that all humans have direct access to through both intuition and dedicated study. It is also described as an inner knowing that incites reverence toward life. Ishwara reveals itself when when we are ready to learn.

If you’re looking for little nuggets of wisdom and some inspiring non-fiction reads this upcoming year, enjoy my list of Wisdom Books for 2020:

Love Heals by Becca Stevens

Girl, Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis

The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein

Everything is Figuroutable by Marie Forleo

The Confidence Code by Katy Kay and Claire Shipman

Happy Reading,

-lisa

More Book Lists for the Curious Yogi from Lisaashyoga.com

 

“Target List” your New Year’s Resolutions.

It’s basically a miracle to leave Target without spending an extra $1,000 on 1,000 things I don’t need. It’s imperative that I have a list before I walk through those doors: a written down in pen-and-paper (not on my phone) list otherwise I’m inevitably sidetracked. All those office supplies. All those cute pillows! All those adorable baby rompers!

A list acts as a guide map. It decides what to say “YES, please” to, and what to say, “No, Thank You” to. Which is why, even if you aren’t a big fan of New Year’s Resolutions, it’s imperative that you reflect yearly on the guiding values that give shape to the course of your life. Otherwise you’re going to get to the end of the year with a cart full of stuff you really don’t want. A list of Core Values helps you prioritize. (I talked a little bit about how this relates to self-care in my post what yoga says about priorities.) 

Core Values reflect who you are at your deepest level of self-awareness and self-understanding. When you are in line with your core values, you live a life of integrity: every decision you make and every action you take is informed by these values. When you are not in line with your Core Values, you’re likely to feel frustrated, trapped, frantic, disconnected and exhausted. When you are in line with your Core Values, you feel refreshed, purposeful, optimistic, relieved and authentic.

Core Values help you move forward in your life with clarity and direction. They serve as guide posts on your journey of becoming empowered to live your best life. They help you decide how to spend your time, where to put your energy and how you serve your community with authenticity.

Download this exercise to get your List Started. Reach out to me with any questions or comments, I’d love to hear your List! (And also, yes, of course I will go to Target with you!)

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Core Values Exercise LifeCoaching LisaAshYoga

P.S. I’ll admit that I’m an over-ambitious New Year goal setter; I’m sure that comes as no surprise to you. I set goals in 4 different categories: personal goals, professional goals, relational goals and spiritual practice goals. See how I organize them in this post: lean forward, get upside down, and set a resolution.

Happy New Year!

-lisa

Spring 2020 Workshop Schedule

Lisa Ash Yoga 2020 Workshops and Special Events

Registration is OPEN. To enroll, head to the “Tuition” Page at:

WestportYogaKansasCity.com

Looking forward to seeing you. Much Love and Light for the New Year!

Winter REcovery Feb 2020

“Winter Recovery and Renewal”

Friday January 10, 2020

6- 8 pm with Lisa Ash Drackert

Winter weather can take its toll on your mobility; but winter can also be the perfect time to invest in your inner landscape. Join Lisa Ash Drackert for her signature class style: Myofascial Release, intelligent breath-based flow and deeply healing Yin Yoga followed by Meditation and essential oils blended to support winter recovery.

Investment: $25

 

Meditation and Myofascial Release PIC, Main St. Address

Meditation and Myofascial Release Class: March 1, 2020

9-10 am @ Westport Yoga KC

Join Lisa Ash Drackert, eRYT-500, one Sunday of the month for a morning of meditation and self-care. First, we will utilize self myofascial release techniques (SMFR) to heal connective tissue, restore tissue integrity and mobilize joints to move freely without pain.

This work will awaken the body to prepare for mindful meditation.  Each class is a different myofascial release focus; you may work on healing tissues in the neck, shoulders, back, jaw, wrists, forearms, hips, or feet. Whatever body area is the focus, you’ll feel refreshed and relieved.

Then, we will share in a guided meditation including pranayama, systematic relaxation techniques and mantra to strengthen our mind-body-spirit connection.

Investment: $18.

 

Fascia Release Friday March 2020

Fascia Release Friday

Friday March 13, 2020

6- 8 pm with Lisa Ash Drackert

Spend your Friday night in self-care. Myo (muscle) + Fascia (connective tissue) + Release (relieving discomfort and restoring full range of motion to feel incredible.)

Learn Self-Myofascial Release Techniques with RAD Roller Products, tennis balls, yoga blocks and breathing techniques to aid tissue recovery and reduce stress. This is especially helpful for relieving pain and discomfort your back, neck and shoulders. Enjoy healing aromatherapy self massage and meditation during savasana; leave feeling refreshed, renewed and ready to heal yourself with these practices in your daily life.

Investment: $25

 

Meditation and Myofascial Release PIC, Main St. Address

Meditation and Myofascial Release Class: April 5, 2020

9-10 am @ Westport Yoga KC

Join Lisa Ash Drackert, eRYT-500, one Sunday of the month for a morning of meditation and self-care. First, we will utilize self myofascial release techniques (SMFR) to heal connective tissue, restore tissue integrity and mobilize joints to move freely without pain.

This work will awaken the body to prepare for mindful meditation.  Each class is a different myofascial release focus; you may work on healing tissues in the neck, shoulders, back, jaw, wrists, forearms, hips, or feet. Whatever body area is the focus, you’ll feel refreshed and relieved.

Then, we will share in a guided meditation including pranayama, systematic relaxation techniques and mantra to strengthen our mind-body-spirit connection.

Investment: $18.

 

Meditate Your Weight April 2020

“Meditate Your Weight”

a 5 Week Series and Book Study

Thursdays in April 4:30 pm with Lisa Ash Drackert

Meditation may be the key to sticking to a healthy eating plan, accurately perceiving your body’s hunger cues and staying at your optimal weight without a diet plan. Research shows that your chance of staying at your optimal weight after weight loss programs of increases when you incorporate relaxing breathing techniques and meditation practices into your daily routine.

This 4 week program with Lisa Ash Drackert, Yoga Medicine Therapeutic Specialist, includes a Book Study of Meditate Your Weight by yoga teacher and health expert Tiffany Cruikshank as well as detailed yoga, breathing, and meditation instruction to help you approach your health with confidence and a sense of empowerment.

Meet for book discussion, yoga and meditation in a supportive and encouraging accountability group on Thursday afternoons in April at Westport Yoga KC: April 2, April 9, April 16, April 23, April 30th.

Your Investment Includes:

  • 5 Specialized Classes with book discussion, yoga and meditation in a supportive environment

  • Your own copy of Tiffany Cruikshank’s Meditate Your Weight

  • Complimentary attendance at 2 regularly scheduled yoga classes at Westport Yoga KC

  • 15% off enrollment in Special Events and Workshops at Westport Yoga KC April- May 2020

  • 15% Private Yoga and Life Coaching Sessions booked with Lisa

  • Weekly email literature and encouragement to help keep you focused on making positive mental and physical health changes in your life!

Investment: $95

 

Spring Revivial April 2020

Spring Revival Yoga

Friday April 10, 2019

6- 8 pm with Lisa Ash Drackert

Spring energy is contagious and invigorating.; but we can also feel out of balance. This class will support your energy for Spring using wisdom from the Traditional Chinese Meridian Theory; your practice will support the gallbladder meridian line and the grounding energy of the wood element.

Join Lisa Ash Drackert for her signature class style: Myofascial Release, intelligent breath-based flow and deeply healing Yin Yoga followed by Meditation and essential oils blended to support a seamless transition into spring.

Investment: $25

 

Yin and Pins April 2020

Yin and Pins: Deep Stretch and Acupuncture for Stress Relief

Sunday April 26, 2020

4-6 pm with Janet Lee and Lisa Ash Drackert

Combined, Yin Yoga and Acupuncture have an immensely positive affect your mental and physical health by relieving stress and “re-setting” your nervous system toward optimal functioning and energetic clarity.

Join Janet Lee, Licensed Acupuncturist and Lisa Ash Drackert, Yoga Medicine Therapeutic Specialist for an afternoon of self- care and stress relief. You’ll be guided into deep relaxation through breathing techniques and Yin Yoga Poses (long held, supported postures) and then receive acupuncture while in final relaxation. The acupuncture “pins” will specifically target points in the ears and on the forehead that reduce tension.

Investment: $45

 

Meditation and Myofascial Release PIC, Main St. Address

Meditation and Myofascial Release Class: May 3, 2020

9-10 am @ Westport Yoga KC

Join Lisa Ash Drackert, eRYT-500, one Sunday of the month for a morning of meditation and self-care. First, we will utilize self myofascial release techniques (SMFR) to heal connective tissue, restore tissue integrity and mobilize joints to move freely without pain.

This work will awaken the body to prepare for mindful meditation.  Each class is a different myofascial release focus; you may work on healing tissues in the neck, shoulders, back, jaw, wrists, forearms, hips, or feet. Whatever body area is the focus, you’ll feel refreshed and relieved.

Then, we will share in a guided meditation including pranayama, systematic relaxation techniques and mantra to strengthen our mind-body-spirit connection.

Investment: $18.

what yoga says about priorities.

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There’s this fallacy floating around about “finding the perfect work/life ratio.” It’s insidious and stinky, and just about as savvy as believing that changing one dirty diaper in the morning means you’re off poop duty the rest of the day.

What I’ve come to believe is that there is no work/life dichotomy at all: there is only life. And it’s my decision how to spend my precious, limited and limitless minutes.

I’ve definitely experienced the ubiquitous “mom guilt” about leaving my Little Lady to go back to work after maternity leave. Do I have my priorities straight? Am I showing Little Lady an example of a strong, empowered woman who owns her business and her passion? Or am I showing her an example of a mom who values commitment to other people and her Google Calendar over time with her own daughter?

Thankfully, the world does not work in absolutes and the Spirit of Grace is one that holds seemingly divergent priorities together in one hand, in one breath.

Because nothing matters more than my daughter does. And at the same time, nothing matters more than my work does.

There are two concepts in Yoga Philosophy that speak to this: aparigraha and brahmacharya.

Aparigraha means non-attachment and sharing generously (it’s directly translated as ‘non-hoarding.’) Brahmacharya means finding a balanced lifestyle and pouring your energy into what is Life Giving, not stinky and soul-sucking. (It’s often translated as ‘aligning with the Divine.’) Read more about Yoga Philosophy Key Concepts here.

Aparigraha means it is imperative for me to teach yoga. Nothing matters more than sharing with absolute conviction what I know to be true: we are made to be healed in body, mind and spirit so that we all may live in peace. We are made of Light, in Light and by Light; anything that suggests otherwise belongs in the diaper pail.

Brahmacharya means that I am responsible for finding a way to teach yoga, own a business and love a family in a way that is Life Giving. It necessitates balancing these priorities in a way that doesn’t make me lose my mind, bring home pointless anxiety or fantasize running away to be a Justin Timberlake roadie.

Holding the two concepts of aparigraha and brahmacharya in congruence requires wisdom, quiet time and giant mugs of coffee in between changing diapers, following up with private clients, leading a team of yoga teachers and lesson planning. It takes some effort, but it is definitely worth it.

Here are some practices that help me do this:

Breathing Mindfully

Breathing In; Breathing Out

What helps you find balance? What helps you remember your priorities? How do you give generously and also have time for self-care?

Happy Prioritizing,

-lisa

Some more self-care inspiration: