Ever been told by your tech support (after being on hold for an hour) to simply “disconnect and then reconnect” your modem to get your internet service back? Or how about that CTRL-ALT-DELETE on your PC? Do simple solutions really work or do you just go buy a Mac? All joking aside, I fully allowed myself to disconnect this past weekend so that I can connect back. Back to what you ask? Back to Earth… back to basics… back to foundation.
As the end of summer and back-to-school hoop-ha came on full force, I seem to have thought I needed to take on more classes. So I got what I asked for (NOTE: Be very careful what you ask for!) With 10 classes a week as a teacher, a mom, a cook, a maid, a taxi, and you might as well throw in a personal banker, assistant and volunteer, I felt full of life and adventure meeting new people and making connections. But somehow amidst all this action, I felt disconnected. The more I taught and the more I did, the more I felt disconnected.
This past weekend with Baron at Foundations in Action bootcamp, I realized why I was feeling so disconnected. Who would have thought that all the connections I was making (locally and in cyberspace) would leave me feeling like I was on my own island. Sometimes when we soar beyond our imagination and succeed in areas that we want to succeed in, we forget to ground back down. That’s exactly what happened to me. My teaching was taking off again after relaxing for the summer. I feels good to feel successful and empowered to take on more and more and go further and further, but as my cup got fuller and fuller, I felt more empty than ever. Depleted would be the word. What I discovered this weekend is that you can soar even higher and feel full by simply keeping both feet on the ground… like a kite that flies high, but there’s a string that always pulls them back to Earth.
One of the themes of the bootcamp was to stay grounded. So perfect for me! No other pose, than tadasana (mountain pose) would portray this theme so well. Not only is tadasana the pose in which every other pose is built from, it brings back the focus to our feet…. that grounds us. It’s so simple but yet so profound in helping us connect back.
When I as growing up, we lived in apartments usually on the top floor where any footsteps beyond a tip toe would send the tenant downstairs to get a broomstick and pound up on the ceiling to tell us to walk quietly. Tadasana reminds me of that… to stomp my feet down firmly, to stand up for who I am, who I can become, where I am, where I can go, and where I can come back to.
When you practice today, can you bring the alignment of tadasana into each and every pose?
So what’s the alignment? As with anything that you build, start from the bottom up:
Bring your feet parallel. Big toes slightly in and heels slightly parted. The “parallelness” is seen on the other edges of your feet.
Lift all toes. Spread them. Press down firmly through the balls of the feet.
Spread the toes back onto the floor while pressing down on the mound of the big toes and pinky toes down.
Lift the inner arches of the feet.
Press the inner ankles of the feet back.
Press the outer ankles of the feet down.
Press the center of each heel down.
Squeeze the outer shins in towards eachother.
Now feel how these actions ground you deeply and activate your core to bring more stability.
Find freedom in your torso:
Draw your arms back by bringing shoulder blades down and in toward the spin.
Lift your sternum.
Spread your collar bones.
Lengthen your neck and lift the crown.
Soften your eyes.
SOAR to the top of YOUR mountain…