Hi there! It's beetee. Happy New Year! May you fill this year with dreams, magic and awesome madness. May you be able to make more time for yoga, for your self-care, for your peaceful mind. May we spend more time together, be it in person, through an email or a podcast. Whatever 2022 has reserved for you, I'm 100% sure you'll make the most out of it!
This week's quick dive to start 2022: the Sun Salutation Flow, How to Use Mindfulness to Form a Habit and let's Start the Year with a Good Deed.
Yoga Flow of The Week: Sun Salutation
Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskara in Sanskrit) is one of the most basic yoga flows you can practice. A flow is a series of postures put together in a sequence, practiced in conjunction with your breathing. How to practice this flow? Fortunately, the past 8 Yoga Quick Dive editions have prepared you with each of the postures in this flow! If you have forgotten them, here is to find them again. If it is still not clear to you, no worries, I have made a 15-20min Youtube video for you. Just follow along!
As the name suggests, salute the new day by repeating this flow 5 to 10 times (or more if your body is craving for it!). And then just sit back and observe what changes it has brought to your state of mind of the morning. I often start the new year with 108 sun salutations, which would take about 2 hours! It's a great strength-building exercise.
Why do we salute the sun? Well, could you stop for a moment to appreciate what our lives would be should the sun stop shining one day? How longer would we survive?
How to Use Mindfulness to Form a Habit
Like every beginning of year, I'm sure a lot of us have launched ourselves into that dreadful exercise of New Year Resolutions, in hope of changing whatever it is that we are motivated to change this year. Only to completely disregard them as February comes. So how do we
stay on track? Forget about big changes. Focus on the small ones. Mathematically, if we could get better just 1% everyday, we will finish the year celebrating 37% better than we started it.
If you are now motivated by those very achievable 37% by year end, here are the tricks to form your habits. According to James Clear, there are 4 stages in the process.
In the first stage Noticing, simply create a time and a place in your calendar where you would perform the habit ("I will brush teeth every morning from 7:00 to 7:03").
In the second stage Wanting, redesign your environment to make it easier for you to perform the habits (for example, don't put your TV in front of your cough, because then all you do when you sit on that cough is just to watch TV; hide the Facebook/Instagram apps from the front screen of your phone; place fruits where you can see them and not hidden in the bottom drawer of your fridge, etc.).
In the third stage Doing, divide your goals into reachable easy/medium/hard mid-goals and focus on the starting line (just show up) and not the finish line.
Finally, in the last stage Liking, don't forget to celebrate at each milestone and give yourself a pat on the back.
Whatever the goal is, most people think they lack motivation when what they really lack is clarity. Hope that helps!
Anything above the Earth and below the Sun is Life. Hopefully something useful to you, or at least something that will bring a smile to your face. 😊
Starting the Year with A Good Deed
I don't know about you (I would love to!!) but the past few weeks have been an amazing, special time in Norway for me & my boyfriend Martin! Quality time spent with family & friends, good food and great discoveries during the travels. The food, oh yess, the Christmas and Holidays food was beyond delicious. And as I devoured the tasty pinnekjøtt and the lavish gravet laks, I couldn't help but think about the several articles that have come up on my news feed over the holidays about the famine that is sweeping Afghanistan. According to the New York Times, an estimated 22.8 million people - more than half of the country's population - are expected to face potentially life-threatening food insecurity this winter. To make it worst, the country is facing one of the worst droughts in decades, and prices of food and other basic goods have soared beyond the reach of many families.
Some of you, readers of the Yoga Quick Dives, have been my generous donors in the past when I led the initiatives in Vietnam to help poor children access medical treatments in Saigon and get to school in Ha Giang (North of Vietnam). In these projects, I chose to conduct the whole operations myself, from fund raising to contacting the end-benefiters through hospitals and schools, to ordering delivery trucks towards the frontiers between Vietnam and China. I wish I could do the same for Afghanistan. For lack of travelling possibilities in the midst of a pandemic, here are a couple of organisations I'd go to, if you are inspired to lend a helping hand:
The United Nations' Afghanistan World Food Programme. The agency is seeking $2.6 billion for its operations in Afghanistan over the coming year. A friend of mine works for this agency in Senegal and has shared with me very useful insights into how they work to fulfill their mission.
Save The Children's Afghanistan Crisis Children Relief. This agency helps both children in need in Afghanistan and Afghan refugee families in the U.S.
I have done my part. Join me. Be the reason someone smiles today (even though they don't know it's you).
Thanks for reading! But don't leave just yet!
Ask me TWO questions or leave me TWO comments below. I'd love to hear from you.
Until then, take a deep breath and keep your worries away!
Yoga Quick Dive is a series of bimonthly newsletters that should take no more than 5 minutes of your reading time. Let's deep dive quickly into 3 topics: Body, Mind and Life.