Posts Tagged 'shiva nata'

Dork Dancing, Check!

I actually didn’t go to the Dork Dancing Mindful Morning Movement Session at the Destuckificaiton Retreat.

But it probably wasn’t that different than the Ironic Aerobics. Step touch. Step kick. Grrrrrapevine. And left…Wooo!


The Mindful Morning Movement Sessions were unplanned, intentionally awkward (cuz then the pressure’s off), and so so fun.

Today is the first day of Recess. I’m so excited.

What better way to start the day than hot lemon water and honey, a personalized playlist, and Dork Dancing.

The attire: whatever, as long as it doesn’t match.

The music: very important, see below.

The moves: start with Step Touch to get moving (it helps to say Step Touch in your 80s aerobics instructor voice). Or jumping with wild arms. Or running man, mashed potato, moon walking. A lot of clapping off beat is good. So are sound effects. The more awkward and uncoordinated, the better.

The venue: living room, bedroom, bathroom (just not in the shower unless you have a call button). It’s nice if your husband has gone to DMV so you don’t have to worry about him sneaking in to watch you (that makes my Monster feel self-conscious).

Ok, music. Here was my playlist:

  • Cake, Comfort Eagle
  • CCR, Fortunate Son (takes me back to really awkward cowboys at high school dances… ACDC would do the trick too)
  • Daisy, Kitty & Lewis, Going Up Country
  • The Iguanas, Para Donde Vas
  • Liz Phair, Supernova

Then I did some Shiva Nata (like taking my first steps on my own!! wobbly but exciting) to:

  • Dead Can Dance, Yulunga
  • Electrelane, The Valleys

And some stretching and loud singing to Patty Griffin:

  • Florida
  • Useless Desires
  • Moses
  • Poor Man’s House
  • Nobody’s Crying

(I am in need of some more good dancing music. Have any recommendations?)

Whew. A great start to the day. As equally lovely, though admittedly different, as starting the day with yoga.

If you ever want to get down dorky together, let me know. Laughing is such good ab work.


Day 2

Asilomar. Destuckification Retreat.

So far we’ve mapped patterns, done Shiva Nata, and talked about talking to monsters.

My Inner Committee is having a grand time:

  • my roommate smells weird (not really, but I can’t think of any other valid reason to not want to be her roommate)
  • the food is very mediocre
  • all the water tastes like coffee—I hate coffee
  • the teacher is a big faker … which is totally awesome and is now what I want to learn about
  • I’m secretly mean and prissy to all of the strange and geeky characters at the retreat, none of whom pluck their eyebrows (see, mean and prissy)

Today I learned that when I say something mean (especially if it’s something mean about me) it’s probably My Monster talking, not the “real” me, my True Essence. “If it’s mean, it isn’t me.”

So apparently my Inner Committee is a committee of monsters. Here’s what they had to say about me this morning:

You’re mean. You don’t get it. You’re a loner. You don’t make friends easily. You don’t do well out of your comfort zone. You should have just stayed home. No one here likes you anyway. You’re prissy and high maintenance. The lemons, honey, specific diet = HM. You’re a pain in the ass and everyone thinks so. Plus you are selfish because you didn’t bring enough for everyone. You’re a poor sport not wanting to do Shiva Nata, not playing along. You must not be very smart, either.

Well then. Nice to meet you, too.

Havi suggested we approach Monster Talk in the following ways:

  1. Ask, “Who said that?” Like was it your mother? A teacher? An old boyfriend? Who’s voice is that … because surely it’s not yours.
  2. Use the BFF approach – would you talk that way to someone you love? (Ajahn Amaro uses this technique too… be you own best friend)
  3. If the monster is overpowering, ask what other (monster) staff there is … a superhero? a translator?
  4. Can you change the monster’s job description?
  5. Can you give it a corner office?
  6. Can you send him to sensitivity training?
  7. Can you give him an apron, a hat, a funny mustache… anything to change his demeanor?
  8. Ask the monster, “Since I’m having trouble understanding you with the language you’re using, can you phrase this differently?”
  9. Let the monster go to town, have a total tantrum, and write it all down in a notebook (which is what I did above). Then look for clues, commonly used words, things you KNOW aren’t true. Then you know what to look for next time. You know how to distinguish Guidance and Wisdom from Monster Talk.
  10. And finally, acknowledge your monster — ok monster, I hear your fear. You seem to want to be supported/valued/loved/etc. And the big question, How can you get those needs met?

After my Monster Mash, I acknowledged that something in me wants to be accepted, loved, and to feel safe being who I am.

I asked how I might (or my monster might? still having trouble talking about “myself” in 3rd person) get those needs met.

No answer came. But that was ok. I felt strangely peaceful after letting my monster rant and asking what it wants.

This afternoon is more Monster interaction… maybe we’ll have happy hour. I’ll let you know.

Damn that resistance

As part of YTT, yesterday the ever-lovely Havi Brooks was with us to share her genius marketing advice (which might be as simple as “be yourself — in print, online, in class, and day to day, just be you”), inspiring us with the idea that you can actually make a living teaching yoga.

As part of the workshop, Havi addressed the fact that some of us have serious resistance that makes us deaf to these topics in the first place: feeling like “marketing” is schmoozy and gross, issues around charging for our services and making money, fears and insecurities that undermine even the best laid plans. So we dealt with this first.

Which meant, Shiva Nata.

It’s sort of a dance, sort of a brain game, sort of fun, sort of frustrating. I’ve had the instructional DVD for a couple of years and now I know why I’ve never taken off the plastic wrap.

No matter what it is… what is does is trippy. It messes with your brain, which wants to see patterns and make sense. The randomness is confusing and helps to short-circuit unconscious habits.

Related to all of this, I had a dream last night of my high school boyfriend. He’s been showing up frequently in my dreams lately… talk about resistance.

In the dream, I am married to and cheating on R to see this old boyfriend. The physical and emotional longing is intense, painful, immature, and very very old.

I was upset when I awoke and didn’t want to talk to R about it, so I did the voices in my head.

I want this so badly.
It’s familiar and comfortable.
It comes from a time in my life when things were simple and innocent.
I could leave everything I know and run away to this.
I just want to be loved, I want him to accept and love me.
He wants me so badly–I’ve always wanted him to want me.
I feel so badly for betraying R.
I’m so torn–feeling like two people at the same time.

There were a bunch of horses in the dream, but I wasn’t getting that they were significant.

Old bf:

And more crickets. And I couldn’t come up with anything. There’s no voice there at all.

Let me back up and explain that as part of an exercise yesterday, Havi asked us to connect with a quality of resistance we were feeling. Right away I had my focus.

She led us through a series of questions about the resistance…

“What is it saying?”

I need you to love me.

“What does it want?”


But when she asked, “What next?” I heard those same crickets.

Maybe I’m not ready to know, maybe I’m totally disconnected or on a different frequency.

Like my impending kidney stone, I feel like I’m on the precipice of something… of letting go, a passing on, a moving through. Whatever it is, I can’t hear it… this voice of my resistance, symbolized by my asshole old boyfriend.

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