why resolve, when you could release?

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re-solve

verb

  1. settle or find solution to (a problem, dispute or contentious matter). syn: settle, sort out, fix, straighten, put right, rectify, deal with put to rights.
  2. deciding firmly on a course of action. syn: determine, decide, make up one’s mind, make a decision.

re-lease

verb

  1. allow or enable to escape from confinement; set free. syn free, set free, let go/out, liberate.
  2. allow (something) to move, act, or flow freely.

 

I want you take just a moment to read both definitions and notice what happens to your demeanor as you do so. Try to play close attention to the feeling in your face, chest and shoulders. What happens?

 


 

Initially as I sat down to write this post, the decision to include the definitions of both the words “resolve” and “release” was solely for the pragmatic purpose of displaying a contrast between terms. My idea was to challenge this cyclical idea that come the new year we are to “fix, straighten, and put right” the lives that we have tripped through over the course of the past 12 months. Although these definitions still serve such a purpose what I noticed as I typed up them up was how my body felt while doing so.

“Resolve” caused my shoulders to tighten, my jaw to set, my posture to grow rigid. By contrast, while typing out the definition of “release” I actually found my self smiling, giddy, relaxing into my seat. This is the energy that each word invokes: resolve – bound by structure, release – expansive freedom and creativity. Our culture – so hellbent on going 5000-million times an hour – seems to take the new year as the one opportunity for pause, meditation, self-reflection. And as is the way of a consumerist culture, the solution to all our woes is shallow and prescribed: more exercise and less food, more giving and less buying, less like yourself and more like…someone else?

Despite being deeply critical of consumerist rituals, I often find my self completely unaware that I am getting swept up in the new year’s resolution craze: exercising (for about a month) more than I ever do, denying my self food, tacking on new “self-care” rituals to my daily routines , reading more, doing more yoga (really..what does that even mean?), etc. I over do it every year and then burn out quickly and fall apart. I find my self eating even more sweets, exercising less, drinking more and neglecting all of my self-care rituals.

I know I am not alone in this and I think that it happens mostly because moving through the world bound by rigidity and rules goes against our nature. We are meant to be free flowing, driven by our instinct. And while I understand that making a new year’s resolution is a means to bettering our selves, I feel it is the wrong approach. Maybe more obviously as well, going on a diet and exercising more during the winter is contradictory to our animal instinct to hibernate. What we truly need is more sleep, less action, more calories and a lot of self-care.

So instead of resolving, this year I aim to release: to move, act or flow freely; to allow or enable [my self] to escape from confinement. I aim to set my self free by listening to my instinct and intuition by slowing down and trusting that I am capable of knowing exactly what needs to be done to meet my own needs. No added rules, we have enough of those bogging us down in our society. Instead I’ll expand, grow and hone those rusty parts of my self already existing and intact. I will open and let go and let out. No more holding back pieces of my self. No more stopping my self before I start. No more shoving aside my intuition. No more puritanical penance. No. I will do what brings me joy and sets me free.

 


 

I encourage you to do the same. Find what feeds you, ask your body what it needs and follow it. Perhaps you find your needs are aiming you toward the realm of self-care and restoration. In that case, I would like to offer you the gift of guidance in your own releasing through restorative yoga and yoga nidra. The “Release” package includes 3 one-on-one private sessions: two 60-minute restorative yoga sessions and one 90-minute yoga nidra session for just $75, the value of which is $170. Give your self the gift of opening up and expanding.

For more information about my approach, look here: https://rebekahjurgensenyoga.wordpress.com/about/

Email to get into contact: rebekah.jurgensen.yoga@gmail.com

 

I look forward to hearing from you and guiding you in finding your release.

finding light

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Yesterday marked the shortest day of the year and now we enter into the quiet, cool and calm of winter…

For many the dread of the coming months loom, promising of biting cold and wind, grey skies, darkness and depression. The dark season demands we slow down and rest, and yet we find ourselves fighting it tooth and nail: rushing here and there, sleeping little, working too much, neglecting our health, ignoring our needs.

Our society consistently requires we fight our animal instinct, our nature, which I find to be especially destructive to the self during this dark time of year. Just as the natural world around us instinctively slows down, so should we be nourishing our human animal spirits in the winter months.

This lesson was one that took me many years to learn and I find still trying to navigate. It is challenging to slow down when it feels that all of civilization is rushing by and pushing you along with it. But in the recent years I have come to learn that self-care is a must and particularly so during these winter months.

Self-care this time of year is how I keep from getting swept up and eventually drowning in my own depression. It means an end to the incessant spinning with little accomplished. It means an excuse to stay in bed, to rest. It means self-care rituals: oil-pulling, dry brushing, bone broth, saunas and spa pedicures. I have come to look forward to this time of year as an excuse to slow down and allow my creative self to flow. I hope, as the days grow longer, you may find this solace as well. Happy winter!

-R.

Here are some self-care rituals that I hope will bring you warmth in the coming months:

  • Do the ayurvedic practice of dry brushing and sesame oil massage, also known as: garshana/abhyanga, daily prior to showering.
  • Try out oil pulling. It is traditionally done with sesame oil, I prefer the taste of coconut oil.
  • Go to bed early and skip the alarm clock.
  • Drink bone broth, daily.

 

 

Who are you, anyway?

You might be wondering: Who the heck is this Rebekah and what does she even do?

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Lil’ Charlie helping with my daily practice.

Let me introduce my self:

As you may have guessed, I am Rebekah Jurgensen of RJYoga LLC. I am new, new, new to the business world and not so new to the world of yoga. I have been practicing yoga in a not-so-linear fashion (a bit of on-again-off-again) for over a decade at this point. I came to yoga first while attending Evergreen — I was in an interdisciplinary program focusing on Anatomy and Physiology where we explored the human anatomy through fine art and live drawing, lectures, labs, body mapping and -the most impactful- yoga. It was a pretty dreamy course and I totally fell in love with yoga through it.

My journey continued and I dabbled here and there at different studios, with different instructors until I came to what I now refer to as my “home studio” Samdhana-Karana Yoga. It was there my practice became regular. I felt as though my teachers cared and were connected to this studio. I learned that hatha-flow was what felt best in my body. My chronic pain, stress, anxiety started to wane. During this time I was deeply allergic to anything resembling spirituality and recoiled at any talk of the sacred texts, the yamas and niyamas, of chanting and the chakra system — I was there to practice asana and asana alone. Nothing more, nothing less.

My relationship to yoga and my practice didn’t really go far beyond the world of yogic movement until about three years ago, when my chronic pain and anxiety would no longer be quieted, when my body would compensate no more. I felt my self spiraling out of control, I was losing hold of me and knew that something had to give. I deepened my self-care routines: I saunaed regularly, went to therapy, exercised, changed my diet and sleep habits and decided to take it further with my yoga practice. I signed up to take my 200-hr teacher training with Pamela Higley. My friends, this experience was (unintentionally, really) absolutely transformative.

At first I insisted that this training was merely a path to teaching. As the months went on and I allowed my self to open up to the sweet loves who I was learning along side and my darling mentors, I found my self softening. My anger, anxiety, my shell, was melting away until I found my core. And thus I re-discovered this me I has not met in two decades: she laughed, was softer, youthful, exuberant and ready to share this lightness with others.

This is how I came to where I am now. This is a piece of who I am. You may wonder what I am  doing with this salvaged self. I am opening it to you. As corny and cliche as it may seem: I am offering my guidance so that you too may discover that beautiful self just below your stresses, fears, anxieties and self-doubts. That self is there, sometimes we just need someone to point it out.

So that is my little introduction. I hope to meet your acquaintance soon and look forward to learning of your journey as well. Take care of you and yours.

Keep loving, keep fighting-

R.

For more information on the details of what I offer in the ways of guidance, click here!

 

Family Empowerment Yoga

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Community

For those of you who may have missed the mini-pilot of my new class series, Family Empowerment Yoga, here are some exercises taken from each class for you to use at home! These classes encourage caretakers to come together with their children in the process of self-discovery and change through the practice of yoga. Each class is centered on a theme, such as this one: Community. Keep your eyes peeled for more classes in the realm of Family Empowerment Yoga soon to come your way!! Continue reading

Family Empowerment Yoga

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Connect

For those of you who may have missed the mini-pilot of my new class series, Family Empowerment Yoga, here are some exercises taken from each class for you to use at home! These classes encourage caretakers to come together with their children in the process of self-discovery and change through the practice of yoga. Each class is centered on a theme, such as this one: Connect. Keep your eyes peeled for more classes in the realm of Family Empowerment Yoga soon to come your way!! Continue reading

Family Empowerment Yoga

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Chaos and Calm

For those of you who may have missed the mini-pilot of my new class series, Family Empowerment Yoga, here are some exercises taken from each class for you to use at home! These classes encourage caretakers to come together with their children in the process of self-discovery and change through the practice of yoga. Each class is centered on a theme, such as this one: Chaos and Calm. Keep your eyes peeled for more classes in the realm of Family Empowerment Yoga soon to come your way!! Continue reading

Family Empowerment Yoga

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Compassion & Caring

For those of you who may have missed the mini-pilot of my new class series, Family Empowerment Yoga, here are some exercises taken from each class for you to use at home! These classes encourage caretakers to come together with their children in the process of self-discovery and change through the practice of yoga. Each class is centered on a theme, such as this one: Compassion and Caring. Keep your eyes peeled for more classes in the realm of Family Empowerment Yoga soon to come your way!! Continue reading

I love what I do

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Over the past week and a half  I feel like I have been going a million miles an hour — cutting paper, printing paper, hanging paper on walls (so much paper!), organizing, discussing, meeting, planning, gathering and gearing up for the coming school year. You may have guessed by now: I work in a school, a preschool to be exact. This year I have been offered the great opportunity of bringing the practice of yoga, the arts and the magical world of gardening to the classroom.

It has been three years since I have led my own classroom. Perhaps needless-to -say: I have spent the majority of this past week or so stressed out to the max over whether or not I made the right decision in taking this position. Lead enrichment teacher. Can I do it? What if I do it wrong? What if the kids are bored, parents dissatisfied? The worries and insecurities had been clouding my ability to sit down and focus, really. They’d been getting in my way.

So I spent a little time to my self. Did my daily practice. Visited a new yoga studio. Cleaned my house, read, played with the cats, worked on my quilt, called my mom, drank some coffee, took the pup on a walk. I cleared my head. Yesterday I went down to Tacoma to swing by my favorite studio Samdhana Karana and pick up some children’s yoga materials that they so sweetly donated to me. Walking into that studio always opens up something in me. Afterwards I visited my sister and niece at her and her partner’s new house. They gave me a tour, we chatted and ate grapes. Felt like home.

When I got home my body was settled, my mind focused and relaxed. Finally. I opened the bags with the donated materials and found, to my delight, all of the lesson planning books I have been meaning to get for the school year along with some other fun kids’ yoga stuff. I began to plan and write about how I’d like the classroom environment to be. As the ideas poured out onto the page, I began to envision just how fun this school year might be and the worries and insecurities completely melted away. I suddenly noticed that I was grinning. I began to get butterflies. This, I realized, this is what. I. do. This is my passion in action. This is my self unfolding into the daily.

I have worked hard to get to this place and yet I find my arrival to be astonishing. I get to guide the children I work with in the practice of yoga…daily. I now am paid to teach art and dig in dirt and teach little ones how plants grow! How completely unbelievable. How incredibly lucky.

 

Family Empowerment Yoga

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Now inviting whole families to practice yoga and grow together! This series invites caretakers to come together with their children in the process of self-discovery and bonding through the practice of yoga. Each session focuses on an area of development to be explored together through: games, storytelling, partner yoga, guided meditation, breath awareness, songs and so much laughter!! Walk away with your family feeling more connected and empowered with ready-to-use games and tools.

Saturday, August 6th:

Compassion and Caring – learning to love ourselves in order to show love to others through introductions, listening and taking turns, loving kindness meditation, breath-work, self-esteem and body-awareness exercises

Saturday, August 20th:

Chaos and Calming – noticing and naming the interplay between dynamic and static movement and feelings through gross/fine motor movement games, breath-work, emotional awareness activities, yoga story time, exploring wiggling in asana and stillness in participatory guided meditation.

Saturday, September 3rd:

Connect – caregiver and child use the skills they have built thus far in partner exercises learning to both ask for help, offer help, listen and express through synchronized breathing, yoga story time with partner poses, listening and turn taking exercises.

Saturday, September 17th:

Community –  bringing our tools from our class to our communities by sharing with each other what we have learned, teaching it to one another and practicing together as empowered individuals, stronger families and connected communities.

All classes are from 10 AM – 11:15 AM and take place at 4620 South Findlay St, Seattle, WA 98118. Can’t wait to work with you!!

 

Email me to sign up!

 

 

 

Offering Private Sessions

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WE are the best judges of our bodies’ needs. We hold the tools to our own self healing. The practitioner’s role is to act as a guide in uncovering the client’s innate tools in their own self healing process – there to shine light on the client’s own power hidden within.

Now taking clients for private sessions! All sessions are offered at sliding scale and uniquely designed to suit your needs. Client has the option of doing a one-on-one or small group session. I can come to you or you can come to me. All are welcome! Invite your friends, kids, grandparents, neighbors and lovers to practice with you. I look forward to working with you.

(Contact about financial aid options)