When things get rough at home with the kids (or your beloved partner!), it helps to step back and remind yourself how lucky you are for all the good things in life. Yoga can help us achieve this state of gratitude. When you breathe, think, ponder, move your body, and break a sweat in a room with fellow peace seekers, you acknowledge many basic things: togetherness, air, breath, thoughts, movement, strength, challenge, time.
Most Thanksgiving posts focus on food, but today I’m focusing on gratitude and how to achieve it, and discussing one of my favorite vinyasa poses, Parivrtta Parsvakonasana, twisted side angle pose.
Gratitude Themed Yoga
Twisting is a great metaphor for life. In life, we have our own notions of how we want to do things. We have a vision of the right way to overcome a challenge. But life doesn’t always allow us to walk our own straight line. As partners, parents, colleagues, friends, we have to keep adjusting, moving, twisting in order to make our relationships jive.
Your child pitches a fit over a lost Lego piece and dismisses your attempts to convince him that his project can be built without it? You want to scream but you can’t. Rather, you have to breathe deeply, control your voice, and essentially twist your mind into looking at your child (who is driving you crazy in the moment) as a human being you love deeply. Mental gymnastics, so to speak.
Your partner arrives home from a business trip and gives you a hard time about a minor household repair, when you’re feeling all romantic, and into a twist you go, thinking back to a recent romantic dinner, and forgiving him for driving you just a little crazy in the moment.
Your leaps of mind achieved, be grateful that as a mom and wife, you’ve found a way to achieve inner peace.
Let’s get to the physical part and talk about a yoga pose that inspires gratitude due to its sheer difficulty. To execute twisted side angle pose, first stand in tadasana. Lower your upper body and place your arms on the floor. Then, drive your right knee forward and place your foot on the ground. Keep the knee of your other leg locked straight and tighten your quad muscle. Raise your back heel and your arms. Take a breath. Then, twist your torso, leaving your hips parallel to the ground. Join your hands into prayer, and press your left elbow into the outside of your bent leg. Suck in your belly, loosen your neck, keep your quad tight and firm. Voila. You did it, mama. With gratitude, move into the next pose of your yoga flow.
And smile …
As for the outfit, find something that makes you feel comfy and strong. I adore Onzie’s elegant, soft, flexible clothes and wear them almost every day. Here, I combine a bright blue bra with transparent netting with some funky, gladiator-style black pants. You can mix and match almost any of Onzie’s luxurious items and achieve creative, personal looks.
Pose accomplished (and gratitude achieved), here’s the view from the back.
What are you grateful for this Thanksgiving? I’ve actually never cooked a Thanksgiving dinner, having had the luxury of relying on my rockin’ Mom. This year, my cupboards and fridge are packed. Nutmeg, ginger, corn-meal, pecans, bread cubes, a 15 pound turkey, all these items await my beginning touches tomorrow. I feel intimidated yet thrilled at once. My kids have promised to help. It’s our first Thanksgiving in a new apartment and a new country. We feel more bonded as a family than ever before. So, much as though I crave being with my siblings and parents, I am grateful for the intimacy of this new Thanksgiving experience. The biggest chunk of gratitude is focusing on what you have versus what eludes you.
Sending much love to you and yours for Thanksgiving and don’t forget to enter our giveaway below.
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