Tag Archives: teaching

FOCUS OF THE MONTH- LOVE AND COMPASSION

 

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Another great focus of the month is  LOVE AND COMPASSION. In a city like New York City, plenty of the faces I see on a daily basis are very hardened, angry, tired, frustrated, and just-so-sick-of-sharing-space-with-anyone. I was on the Metro North yesterday talking on the phone to one of my student’s moms. She was expressing such joy and excitement for her daughter’s lovely voice and talent. I was equally as enthusiastic. My face was in a big broad smile and my tone was light and happy, and it was met with very, very angry responses. The woman seated across from me on the train was glaring at me and began to cross and uncross her legs in frustration at my voice and happiness. The man next to me began to pinch the sides of his head and take huge deep breaths, because he needed it quiet. We all want different things at different times, but in order to exist harmoniously we must accept one another’s needs and adjust accordingly. I lowered my voice and kept my conversation to myself. I could have made the choice to be louder, spread the joy more exuberantly, but I knew that would be the opposite of compassion. I ended the call quickly and sent loving messages silently to these two very seemingly grumpy people. And it is okay that they are grumpy, they probably have every right to be grumpy, but I wish that they become free and happy! Love and compassion is not trying to change people, but letting them be, listening to them completely, and without any judgement. It is easy to try to win and one up and to prove ourselves in this town, but it is important to go back to the basics of eye contact, smiles, and good conversations. Practice love and compassion with yourself and those around you. You can practice through yoga, through song, and by asking your children, students, and yourselves these questions:

 

 

 

Question 1: What is your definition of  love and compassion?

 

My Answer: Listening with your heart.

 

 

Question 2: What makes you feel love and compassion?

 

My answer: Teaching Yoga and Voice and Acting and spending time with family and friends

 

Poses for a loving and compassionate yoga practice:  Restorative Poses: Pigeon, Happy Baby, Child’s Pose

 

Songs for a loving and compassionate singing lesson:  Somewhere Over the Rainbow, Smile, Life is like a Bowl of Cherries

 

Now find a person who embodies a life of  love and compassion… Ask them these questions, do some yoga poses with them, and sing some songs!

 

Post your definition of love and compassion and post your answers below xoxoxo Margo

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FOCUS OF THE MONTH- CREATIVITY

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Another great focus of the month is  CREATIVITY. Creativity is defined as , “The use of the imagination or original ideas, especially in the production of an artistic work.” Creativity can turn words on a page into magic, it can turn music into a whole new world, it can turn the yoga mat into a place of exploration and wonder. If you don’t use your imagination, things become quite dull and sometimes scary, it is possible to practice making things more interesting. Use your time on the yoga mat to tell a story.

When I am teaching my youngest students, we become an array of animals, we visit forests and beaches and explore a range of emotions, all within less than an hour of class. We attempt to explore all of life’s many complexities and address balance, focus, magic, joy, and more. We use our creativity, and when one person decides it’s time to stagnate the creativity and say, “this is fake”, it takes the magic away. So believe in your creativity and get interested in your artistic expression. Creativity can be practiced! Teach your children, students, and yourself how to take an ordinary situation and make it extraordinary! Maybe it’s just making up a story together and then acting out the story with your bodies and voices! Paint a picture, sing a song, and dance!

 

 

 

Question 1: What is your definition of creativity?

 

My Answer: Turning the ordinary into the extraordinary.

 

 

Question 2: What makes you feel creative?

 

My answer: Writing Plays, Performing Monologues, Teaching Yoga and Voice and Acting

 

Poses for a creative yoga practice:  Warrior 1, 2, 3 for strength, Savasana for deep relaxation and meditation, Forward Folding for Introspection

 

Songs for a creative singing lesson:  Alex Winston’s Songs, Miss Li’s Songs, Try a song in a different language to get really creative, ZAZ.

 

Now find a person who embodies a life of  creativity… Ask them these questions, do some yoga poses with them, and sing some songs! Teach your children and students about life’s and all it’s creativity, and have fun while doing so! Make up a story together, do a yoga practice that is in synch with the story, stand like tall mountains, build trees on your mountain, have wind come and knock down the trees, meet animals along the way. Get down and play with your children! Be creative.

Post your definition of creativity and your answers below xoxoxo Margo

TEACHING FOCUS THIS MONTH- HAPPINESS

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Lately I have been playing with a focus of the month for my students. This month has been, happiness! We can explore the emotion or state of happiness with our yoga poses, our song choices, and our activities. Happiness is contagious, there are songs about happiness, “Happy”, “Don’t Worry be Happy”,  there are the songs that make us happy, there are advertisements of happy, happy books, and it’s even in the Declaration of Independence! Happiness can be a choice, though subjective and sometimes fleeting, we can choose it. What exactly is happiness? How can we get happy or stay happy or eek out happy from all of our given circumstances? In life, it has been said and proved, that we get really good at what we practice most. Do you practice happiness? Do you know how? Ask yourself these questions, ask your students these questions, ask your kids these questions;

Question 1: What is your personal definition of happiness?

My Answer: A smile and a warm-hearted encounter, a genuine friend, my marriage, my family, the ability to look for the positive in every situation.

Practice: Think of a short positive phrase for your life as it is today. ” I am healthy.” ” I sleep well.” ” My friends are so special and loving”. ” I can sing and dance!”

 

Question 2: What makes you happy?

Answer: Yoga, a run in central park, writing poetry, museums, amazing movies, a Broadway play, watching the wind blow things around the city, a good night’s sleep, teaching, a massage, traveling, my nieces, remembering my Grandma, my marriage, my family members, sharing my time with great friends

 

Practice: Do the things that make you happy, see the people that make you happy, be present while you see and do those things!

 

My Happiness Poses for a great yoga practice: Crow, Astavakrasana (google it) , Compass, Splits

 

My Happiness Songs for a great singing practice: “Cups”, “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”, “Wrecking Ball”, ” Say Something”, “Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries”

 

Now, go out and find that person in your life that you see as exuberant, vivacious, and happy. Ask them what their definition of happiness is and what makes them happy. Then ask them to show you their happy yoga poses and sing some of your favorite happy songs together!

Please post your happiness answers to what does happiness mean to you and what makes you happy?

 

xo

Margo