Monthly Archives: October 2011

Beauty Advice, Puh-LEEZE! Round 1: Mascara

Dears,

I need a new waterproof mascara.

I’m a yoga teacher. I sweat and want to look pretty doing it.

Please, can anyone recommend a dark black (or even navy) colored, sexy, sultry, wave-making mascara that won’t create heroin chic rings around my eyes?

Also, not too pricey.

Come on ladies, this is info that needs to be shared!!!!

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Filed under Inside Your Make-up Bag

Single Ladies!!!

Or “Why Your Coupled Friends Should Be Interested In Your Single Life.”

You’re a single girl. You date. You have dating joys and mishaps. When it comes to dating, you’ve always got a story.

But have you ever found that your adventures in dating are dismissed by your married friends? Have you ever felt that no matter how intense it felt at the moment, your dating newsflash is deemed less serious than the love lives of more established couples?

I know you know what it’s like to be overflowing with giddy excitement, practically bursting at the seams to share with your fellow single ladies the intricacies of negotiating the first kiss.  But what happens when you’re brunching with your happily married girlfriend with 2 kids?  Do you clam up? Do you hold back on the dating details for fear that your non-single friends will judge you as fickle, or worse, incomplete? Maybe you censor yourself because it seems less important next to the “mature” endeavors of raising a child or paying off a mortgage? It’s not.

Dating is important.  It’s empowering. To all the women who date, or chose not to date, I know you’re inquiring in yourself what you find attractive, fun, playful and sexy.  You’re testing your own boundaries, and oftentimes feeling very deep emotions without the stability of a long-term partner.  You’re getting closer to yourself. You’re doing the good work for all of womankind. Thank you.

No pressure, though.  Late night booty calls are perfect too.

“Coffee” is copyright (c) 2009 Vinni123 and made available under a Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 license.

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Filed under Inside Your Friendships, Inside Your Love Life

New and Nauseous

Things are pretty good. Everything is moving smoothly. When I step in to the yoga studio, I know what to do. My heart isn’t pounding. My head isn’t pulsing, and my appetite hasn’t gone to Mars because I’m too scared to eat. No, no, those things don’t happen. Not anymore.

But they did. And often. When I first started teaching yoga, day after day, I’d do something new. I’d teach at a new studio. I’d teach a new class level, with new practitioners. For me, doing new things is a guaranteed woozy-maker, a nausea-inducer.

But these days my appetite has come back. My voice is steady, and I can breath deeply without tears of fear welling up in my eyes.

Phew, sweet relief.

But wait, what’s this? I’m feeling that part-nauseas/part-thrilling feeling of doing something new, all over again. I thought I was done with all that!

So I use this feeling as a guide. It’s an uncomfortable but reliable one, at best. This feeling tells me to keep going. It tells me I’m on the right track, and that I shouldn’t stop. It helps me clear a path into the great unknown of absolute greatness.

This feeling says, “Everything is going to be ok, and soon you’ll have a cookie.”

Thank you Gohjung at Instagram. http://instagr.am/p/RYX7I/

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Filed under Inside Your Career

Color of the Week–Smokin’ Hot!

Dears, it’s been three whole weeks since my last mani/pedi. And for too long to admit, I walked from yoga studio to lunch date to yoga studio again with a chipped pedicure, and naked finger nails. Routine beauty pleasures just got lost in the hustle of the week. But not forgotten.

This week, I’m back with shiny new fingers and toes.

Color of the Week: “Smokin’ Hot!” by Essie. Try not to love it.

Smokin' Hot! By Essie

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Thank You, Part 2. In List Form.

One post is not enough. THANK YOU. Again.

Last weekend’s Goddess Retreat threw a fuzzy blanket of gratitude over the whole week. Gratitude cuddlefest!!

And as a result, I’m experimenting with a regular Gratitude Practice. It’s simple–I list in clear and simple language, either silently, verbally, or pen to paper, all of the things that I’m grateful for, past, present and future.

Also, I’m falling in love with lists. In the past, lists seemed dull, boring, and without magic. But now they’re perfectly suited to capture all the kooky things that pop into my head, and flow out of my pen. With lists, there’s no need for explanation. If it’s on the list, it’s correct.

So here’s my weekly wrap-up of “Thank You’s”, in no particular order.

1. Autumn layers
2. Girlfriend late night chats
3. Individually purchased chocolate caramel clusters at The Chocolate Room on Court Street
4. Romantic quotes in romantic emails from my romantic boyfriend
5. Yoga class with live music accompaniment

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Filed under Inside Your City, Inside Your Closet, Inside Your Friendships, Inside Your Love Life

Inside The Yoga Studio

Teaching yoga is not easy, not by a long shot.

But it is simple. Inside the yoga studio my role is clear. I talk, I teach, I facilitate. My students’ role is clear. They listen, move, breath in unison, and enjoy their bodies.

That’s what happens inside the yoga studio. It’s our grown-up slumber party. It’s a suspension of outside obligations. Inside the yoga studio we make a wordless deal to play nicely with each other, to play respectfully. We cheer each other on. Go ahead, be ridiculous, be great, be honest. 

At the end of class, there’s pregnant silence. We gather our things from the outer corners of the room–sweatshirts, keys, regular pants without luon. Soon we’ll each be a commuting body moving at quick speeds underground. But not yet.

What happens inside the yoga studio stays with us as we move outside into the world. Till we come back and do it all again tomorrow.

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A Thank You Note

I spent the past weekend on a yoga retreat in the Catskills. It was an all-women affair, aptly named the Goddess Retreat. I’ve been attending these retreats since they began over ten years ago. And each and every time, I’m joined by my mom.

As proper etiquette dictates, a Thank You Note is appropriate.

Dear Goddess Retreat,

Thank you for the pear cobbler with homemade whipped cream. I had four big dollops.

Thank you for the extra down blanket. It was warm and fluffy.

Thank you for the stories. A woman acknowledged her passions. Another woman discovered love, almost lost it, and found it again.  Many women prayed for children, prayed for their ability to care for them, and prayed for their ability to let them go. 

Thank you for dance class.  These days, dancing  is a rare treat. I long to dance without self-consciousness, or fear of sending the wrong message. I want to dance in a safe space, whether it’s my living room or a line dancing club in New Jersey. Because dancing is feel-good medicine. 

Thank you for the hours upon hours of hang-out time.  You reminded me what it’s like to hold a conversation long enough to get to the meaty part.

Thank you for the laughs and tears and wet snorts in between.

Thank you Goddess Retreat. I’m so glad we’re friends.

Very Best, Daniella

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Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Family, Inside Your Friendships, Inside Your Lunch Pail

Turn up the Volume!

If you have ever practiced next to me in class, you know that I have a quiet yoga practice. On the whole, I’m pretty unassuming. I don’t take up too much space or call too much attention to myself.  I can flow seamlessly from pose to pose. My practice is decidedly Low-Volume. 

On the mat, I know how to make it look like I’m present, and in the moment. But just because my body awareness has improved over time, that doesn’t mean I’ve gotten any more enlightened. Or any less chattery in my little brain. Far from it.

In easeful poses, I can easily be very far away.  But some poses, like handstand, are still major challenges for me.  And when attempting handstand, I’m immediately awake. I’m shaken out of my dreamy vinyasa waltz.  I put all my effort into finding the balance, holding my gaze, and refining the shape for just an extra breath before I fall. And I fall a lot. Sometimes loudly. I’m no longer the light dancer that flows from Warrior 2 to Side Angle. Instead, I’m a focused practitioner, calling upon all of my resources in that exact moment to find myself sticking handstand, and then descending with variable amounts of grace. 

In a practice of mostly whispers, it’s nice to turn up the volume to a roar, every now and then!

 

 

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Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio

Slow The F#@k Down!

I’m always rushing. I rush to the train, rush home to take a nap, and rush in to the yoga studio, all out of breath and sweaty to finally fit in a class that day. Rush, rush, rush.  Hell, I’m a yoga teacher. What’s wrong with this picture?!

Maybe it’s because I’m a New Yorker. Maybe it’s because I only have one day off per week. I’m used to moving, floating on momentum, and getting to the next moment.

But I’m trying to be slower. I know from past experiences (few, but memorable) that the slower I move, the more I accomplish.  I take deep breaths and time seems to slow down.  There’s more in every moment, and life unfolds in abundance.

This is what I try to remember when I am carrying heavy bags filled with books, two changes of clothes, and a water bottle. This is what I try to remember when the G train passes me by as I walk down the subway stairs. Another one will come…just a short 20 minutes from now.

The most ridiculous part is that I know that more of everything is coming. More trains, more dinner dates, more movies, more yoga classes, more articles to squint at on my smartphone. More overwhelming love is coming. More opportunities and discoveries. It’s all coming down the pike.

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Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Career, Inside Your City

Paradigm Shift

Something just stopped. Abruptly, dramatically, and without warning.

I’d spent the last few years figuring out how to be every man’s fantasy. But now I wanted to be someone’s reality.

What felt good yesterday doesn’t feel good today. What was a wise choice last week no longer seems appropriate. There’s a new game plan forming, but what is it?

When I grabbed my phone to send another flirty text, I realized something was off. This flirtation was not nearly enough, and too much at the same time. My heart sank.

And then I panicked.  I wondered if I had been wrong to act as I did for all the years before now? Had I misunderstood something profound? Worse yet, had I ruined my chances of getting what I want–happiness, love and maybe, someday, partnership?

NO. What was right then, was right. But not right for right now.

So what next? I figured out the whole sexy goddessy thing. Do I strip it all away? Or keep it and add something new to the table?

I don’t know for sure. I’m just testing out this new paradigm. I’m doing my best to add a big dose of honesty to my current relationship, as unsexy as that seems. If I want to be someone’s reality, I have to be real. I share more. I communicate more. I cry more.

I’ll keep you posted on how it goes!

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Filed under Inside Your Love Life