Tag Archives: yogi bhajan

Are You Living Your Intentions? 3 Steps To Start Now

Grace - 1Often, spiritually guided, inspired moments in our lives end up being just … moments.

In other words, despite your excellent intentions, you cleanse and then go right back to eating office cupcakes. You work out for a month and then stop moving at all. You plan to cut off a toxic relationship and then, in a moment of weakness, text that person you know is bad for you.

Why?

The truth is that living a healthy, miraculous life—with vitality and grace—requires real commitment and a practice. Without it, even your most soul-directed intentions may falter.

The right tools make these moments more of a mind-set and allow you to live your good intentions. Try these tips and practices that I created and use all the time.

1. Practice radical forgiveness. When we slip up, we often enter a cycle of guilt that sabotages our progress even more. What if you could learn to forgive yourself on the spot? Forgiveness is a choice you make. In an instant you can shift from self-hatred and attack to self-love and compassion. Your simple decision to choose to forgive yourself will open the floodgates for peace to set in. Next time you judge yourself for falling off the healthy wagon, simply say, “I choose to forgive myself now.” Then relax into that commitment and let forgiveness take over.

2. “When in doubt, play it out.” It’s easy to forget about the long-term consequences of small choices, especially when temptation (say, a jumbo frosted cupcake) is right in front of you. Instead of summoning every ounce of willpower to resist the urge, remember: When in doubt, play it out. That’s right. Play out the entire story from start to finish. You pick up the cupcake and eat the whole thing, then in the heat of the moment you eat another. Fifteen minutes later you have a sugar headache that stays with you until the following morning when you feel hung over from the cupcake binge.

Whatever the issue, if you take the time to play out the entire scenario you’ll be able to talk yourself out of making a mistake. The key is to think your way through the whole story. Not just the fun part where you get a sugar high off of the cupcake. Play the story all the way through to the end when you crash and burn. Your honesty and willingness to remember what is real will save you when you want to relapse into old behavior. This tool isn’t just for sugary temptations. Use it whenever you find yourself enchanted by something that ultimately is not good for you.

3. Do you have permission-giving thoughts? Do you give yourself permission to do things that you know should be out of bounds for you? Whether it’s downing that extra drink, buying that dress on your maxed-out credit card, or eating fast food, giving yourself the go-ahead ultimately leads to bigger failures. Here’s how to flip that logic: Stop giving yourself permission to partake in the negative behavior. If you make a commitment to yourself that you no longer partake in that activity—”I don’t drink”—then you won’t wind up drunk on a Friday night when you wanted to stay sober. Each time you choose not to give yourself permission to do something negative, you make it easier to do something positive. Making good on your good intentions is a miracle.

Want to figure out how to turn these three intention-keeping tips into a lifelong practice? Then check out this video for more tips. I created this toolkit for the “Summer of Miracles” lecture I co-hosted with Well&GoodNYC. You’ll love. For further guidance you can watch the lecture video here.

The Kundalini yoga master Yogi Bhajan says, “There’s a way through every block.” And the strategies and meditations I share in this lecture will help you learn to find the ways that work for you.

The Highlight of my Summer: Wanderlust, My Spirit Junkie Sleepaway Camp

wanderlust

My summer began with a series of retreats and live events. I kicked off retreat season with a debut appearance at Wanderlust Festival in Vermont. As a new yoga teacher it was an honor to be invited to share my work with the Wanderlust community of hardcore yogis.

As I drove up the mountain toward the festival entrance, I felt a rush of energy pass through my body. It was a familiar experience–the same feeling I had each summer as I arrived at sleepaway camp. Throughout my whole life I’ve gotten high off large-scale gatherings of like-minded people. Wanderlust was my new camp!

The next morning I journeyed into the main festival tent to get mic’d for my talk. I felt the energy of the community as hundreds of high-vibe yogis entered into the space. I hit the stage and a power greater than me took over before I even said a word. That lecture was the highlight of my summer (so far), and I’m psyched to share it with you.

Enjoy the video from my Speakeasy talk at Wanderlust Vermont:

More pics from Wanderlust!

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Gabrielle Bernstein: Find Yourself in Others

In today’s vlog I share a portion of a lecture I gave on Yogi Bhajan’s Five Sutras for the Aquarian Age. This video features my talk on the first sutra: Recognize the Other Person is You. This is a very powerful message today as issues of separation are brought to the surface. As you apply this sutra in your own life you can come to realize that what you admire in others is a part of yourself that may not be developed or expressed yet. In addition, you may come to understand that what you don’t like in others is a disowned part of our shadow. Watch this video for guidance on how to release separation in your relationships to others:

Tell me your thoughts in the comments section below!

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Dive in Fully to Who You Want To Be

In this vlog I share my thoughts on how we can play BIG in our lives starting NOW. We can no longer dance around the perimeter of the person we want to be, we must dive in deeply and completely. Watch now.

Think about the person you want to be. What kinds of things does s/he like to do? How would s/he react in a given situation? Are you ready to dive into the spirit of this version of your self and start living fully?

Calming Meditation with Gabrielle Bernstein

April is National stress awareness month. I recently visited Good Day New York to share ways to reduce stress. In this video I offer a stress-free way to start your day, as well as two Kundalini meditations that will calm you down. Enjoy!

Hello Boogie Bottom!

Many years ago while I was living in the ashram that I had started down in Miami with my (now ex) husband, we went to visit our teacher, Yogi Bhajan, who was staying at the Fountainbleu Hotel in Miami Beach.    He had just finished leading several hundred of his students in a ten day course of meditation, yoga and other spiritual instruction (in complete silence by the attendees) and was having a short rest at the hotel before heading back to his residence in Los Angeles.  We were accompanied by our baby daughter, Saraswati who was several months old at the time.  We affectionately had nick-named her "Boogie Bottom" for the cute action of her bottom as she crawled around the house.

So as we enter the room where Yogiji is staying and upon him setting eyes on our beloved Saraswati, he utters in his large, booming voice:  "How is my little Boogie Bottom"?  Stunned, my husband and I looked at one another.  How did he know this nick-name we had for her?  We had never shared this information with him.  When we asked him how he knew this, he just smiled and wagged his head at us.

In the Aquarian Age – ‘Be You’ – Nothing Less Will Do

"One thing you have to be more than anything else, you have to be you. Nothing less than you will work. You minus ego is always you. You with your ego is always not you. ”

– Yogi Bhajan

Being you can be one of the easiest and most difficult things to do in the world. To be authentic is to be in Truth. Being in Truth means being honest with yourself . and where appropriate, acknowledging and expressing how you feel, your needs and your vulnerabilities. It is the ego that would have us believe we are the only ones in the world that feel lonely, sad or afraid. We are all human and share the same range of emotions whether we express them or not.

In a group, if one person speaks the truth – it is often an energetic relief for the others. When truth is expressed, it gives permission to other people to also express themselves. It takes great courage to be the first one to speak the truth – especially if people (i.e. egos) do not want to hear the truth.

Remember, the Universe is Truth so when we are aligned with truth we are aligned with the power of the Universe. Any thing that is untrue will not remain – the truth eventually always comes out. We are entering into the Aquarian Age and this is the age of truth. We will not be able to hide from others or ourselves any longer. In fact, we will become transparent to one another.

Being Authentic means that act the same whether you are with good friends, parents, siblings, a supervisor or the police officer that just stopped you for speeding.

“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”

– Dr Seuss

Many of us have been made to feel that we are not good enough by authority figures in our lives (parents, teachers etc) or indirectly through media and advertising. Many of us are trying to be someone else: the latest Hollywood star, sports celebrity, model, business tycoon or someone else you admire.

For example, the beauty and fitness industry thrives on the insecurities of both women and men. They send the message that we need to ‘make up’ for some lack in ourselves. They would have us believe that the perfect body (with enlarged or reduced parts) will bring us happiness and ultimate fulfillment.

When someone is authentic, they are happy within themselves. Some people think that if they don’t continually improve themselves that they will become lazy and complacent and stop learning, growing and changing. The nature of the Universe is change – it is an illusion that we are not changing every single day.

The Aquarian Age teaches that we are each whole and complete unto ourselves. Happiness in the Aquarian Age requires that we be no less than authentic and truly share ourselves with one another.

5 Steps to ‘Be You’ Relax: you can only be you when you are relaxed in mind and body.

Laugh at Yourself: if you make a mistake, learn to laugh at yourself and your foibles. Don’t take yourself so seriously.

Accept yourself: stop judging and criticizing yourself and perceiving yourself through other people’s eyes. Let go of what other people think of you.

Spend some one on one quality time with yourself: get to know who you are without the distraction of others. What are the values and principles you live by? Create a Life Vision statement.

Stop Comparing yourself to Others: Love yourself – unabashedly. Look in the mirror each day and use loving affirmations (they really do work!). Don’t try to be someone else – Be the Best ‘You’ you can be!

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