Beauty Is A Light In The Heart.......Let It Shine!
"People are like stained-glass windows.They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within." Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
What is it that makes us shine from the inside.....serene inner peace, contentment, love, happiness? Who truly knows the answer? It is different for every single person. Its a good question to ask yourself and you may not know the answer straight away but the next time you feel that inner glow brightening your life and the lives of those around you, just check in and remember what got you there.
I remember my mum always used to say to me when I was younger that I had a sparkle, some kind of zest for life that used to shine through me and light up my face, but when I was in a bad place that sparkle would be dulled. I can identify now that "the sparkle" for me personally, is simply feeling peaceful within myself. I have a terrible habit of allowing my life to get a bit manic. Sometimes not the most organised person in the world, always trying to do too much and far too often forgetting my own advice to breathe and let it go, I continually allow things get on top of me. When I become this tornado of chaos, I know that my sparkle has disappeared and my poor hubby needs to run two floors up to the man cave pronto!! It used to take me a few days to find it again and regain clarity and perspective on the world but now I know that an honest heart opening yoga class, a long dog walk through the beautiful countryside or a big glass of vino with my buddies, either or all will fix me up in no time. Also, that little monkey's smile is enough to melt the clouds away.....however let's not talk about the new tantrum she throws every time she gets into the car seat, dealing with that one takes a hell of a lot of deep, deep breathing!! Despite this however, I do believe I have come a long way in a relatively short amount of time and I thank yoga for this.
As an ever learning and diligent student of yoga and also a teacher, I want to encourage that inner light in my students. I believe everyone and every living being has it, whether it shines brightly or is covered by clouds, it is there nonetheless. It just takes a quick look out the window to see the beautiful spring season showing its glorious face in the shape of bright yellow daffodils sprouting out of the ground and birds lighting the sky with their songs. Beauty is all around us and innate inside us. Its tapping into that awareness, then turning your gaze inwards to identify what makes you shine, what makes you truly happy. Often in class, I can actually see yoga encouraging that beautiful light to shine out of the hearts of my students. Be it a great big genuine smile when you achieve something you never thought you could, or laughing as you fall out of crow or get legs and arms tangled up in a bind, smiles and laughter in class warm my heart and allow the student to feel more relaxed to eventually find that inner serenity.
beauty is a light in the heart
This week in class I am turning OFF the music....yes its true, OFF OFF OFF!!! Now everyone knows how much I love my weekly playlists but I think this week's theme of finding that inner beauty and peace deep within takes a truly honest, fully aware and actively inward facing practice. We will be focussing on Ujjayi breath throughout, that low hum of pranayama life force energy filling up the branches of the lungs and replenishing the body with fresh oxygenated blood. Becoming aware of the palms of the hands and soles of the feet we will be working on uddiyana bandha (abdominal lock) as we find our core in side plank (vashystasana), open our hearts in half moon (ardha chandrasana) and detox the body with revolved side angle pose (parivritta parsvokonasana). We will also be doing blind sun salutations (surya namaskar A) as we move through the flow with our eyes closed finding that inward facing, mediative flow. Its important to try to keep the eyes closed and lead with the heart and it is a wonderful exercise for anyone to find a moment in be in tune with their inner rhythm. To warm down, venturing into heart opening pigeon and maybe mermaid for those who feel nice and open in their quads (eka pada rajakapotasana), then a lovely wide legged seated pose, keeping the heart forward facing whilst resting on the forearms (upavista konasana). To finish class, a lovely supine twist (supta matsyandrasana) and of course savasana to end the session. Hopefully invoking a deep, honest savasana, allowing that inner beauty to shine so very brightly.
pigeon variation aka mermaid
This week, my shout outs and people to watch are all involved in the world of beauty and their inner light is shining ever so brightly;
@aladycalledred I have been talking about being beautiful inside and letting that inner sparkle shine, there is NO ONE I know that shines like this lady. Not only is she an incredible, kind person who's brilliant energy is highly contagious but she is also a phenomenal artist and singer who's inner beauty emanates from the stage to every corner of the room. Check out her video below of "Take Another Little Piece Of My Heart" and follow this superstar in the making!
@curaapothecary aka Jessica, a totally inspiring young lady, also one of my Monday morning yoga students, who has just opened a gorgeous shop in Bishops Stortford called Cura Apothecary which is full of natural, organic skincare, make up, perfumes, yoga equipment etc. I highly recommend a product by brand, "MooGoo" that she sells which has almost completely healed Gracie's eczema. It has been frustrating my little monkey moo for a long time and no other product, even ones the doctor prescribed have worked. Cura also stocks @renskincare which is one of my favourite brands and works wonders on the skin. I particularly love the REN body scrub and the REN revitalising night cream!
the MooGoo products helping Gracie's ezcema
Ren products in Cura Apothecary
Jessica and Ren Spokesman Derrick
So so happy to have this wonderful shop so near by....WELL DONE Jessica and thank you! Her instagram link is below;
@tijanserena if you follow my instagram or facebook you will have seen lots of pics over the years with my very stunning cousin who writes an extremely successful beauty blog. She really has all the knowledge on pretty much every product out there and blogs and vlogs daily about what really works and what doesn't. With her 13.2k followers on intstagram alone, she really is one to watch!
Tijan Serena, glam as ever