Friday, January 30, 2009


How do you relate? This question applies in EVERY aspect of our life. Often when people discuss relationship it is referred to along the lines of partnership, significant other, husband, wife, girlfriend, boyfriend terms. Of course this is a significant relationship in our lives or these if you have walked in my shoes :-).

However when I reflect on this term, relationship, I look at the deeper aspects of what it means to relate, be in relation too, or have a relationship with. SPecifically, I look at how my relationship is with myself, my being, my spirit, my soul. As a part of this I break it down into parts in order to gain a deeper and fuller perspective on the whole.

One of the parts I take time a meditate on is my relationship with my thoughts. If we truly are what we think we are then I find it is essential that I have a unconditional loving, compassionate, kind, respectful, gracious, appreciative, honest, humorous, fun, integrity filled relationship with these thoughts. They are what they are and they flow as they do. It is up too me to decide what role they play in my daily practice of living and in my relation to all things.

One may wonder how I do this, how I nurture and nourish this relationship. Simple I live each day with the words I described above as the way of my conscious choice action, as my daily practice. And, if I for some reason 'slip and fall' I pick myself up, meditate, reflect, and learn from the opportunity. Yes, it is that simple becuase it is a choice, one I make consciously, one I have learned through life experiences, study, practice, relationships with various people, and by incorporating a daily practice of meditation and just slowing down in life and taking life one step at a time.

I encourage myself and others to truly stop and listen, observe and see how they are being in the present moment, how they are acting in their lives.

*Is what you do, are your relationships with others serving you?
*More important, how is your relationship with yourself?
*Do you have love and compassion for yourself? Do have a 'positive' self image, self perception?
*Do you talk bad about yourself to people or others for that matter?
*Do you treat yourself with respect and gratitude?
*Do you realize you are only human and therefore only know what you open yourself up to learning, seeing, doing, being, experiencing, sharing?
*Do you take yourself too serious, so much so that you beat yourself up for every perceived failure, mistake, etc?

YOU ARE ONLY HUMAN, Stay and Be Human(e).

These questions, life in general is a mirror unto yourself and your relation with yourself, your being, your body, your mind, your thoughts, your EVERYTHING?

My word of advice, Unconditional, unconditional everything and that starts with what love really is, yourself!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Invitation

By the Oriah Mountain Dreamer...thank you Cecilia for reminding me of this beautiful poem

The Invitation

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.

Damn it or Flow with It? you have a choice!

In life a moment will occur where you can choose to yield or resist. It is at this point in time you will take action and make a choice. Your action, your choice will have a great impact on the outcome of the moment. Do you choose to resist creating a counter resistance or do you choose to yield opening up to the possibilities, maybe even beyond your wildest imagination?
I ask do you flow with or do you damn it? Also, ask of yourself where does my action and choice come from, ego or essence.

If you are prepared in life and you are living in a state of consciousness then the action and choice will be easy and you will flow opening yourself to unlimited potential and possibility. As you will be ready, be 2 or 3 steps ahead of the moment, being able to anticipate and therefore respond with conscious choice action!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Effortless Effort

Sure sounds good doesn't it? The idea of effortless effort. One would say that is a fantasy state and the wise would say nothing because rather than put effort into reasoning with the non believer they would act without effort because the wise is in the conscious state of effortless effort.

As I practice Aikido and learn the art and read deeper into martial arts, not the commercialized versions, but the arts, the true practices of martial arts like Aikido and Bruce Lee I do believe in the state of effortless effort. In fact I can say I have felt it even though more often than not I am in a state of effort or somewhere between. This is because I am a student learning to take the philosophy and put it into the art and creativity of my practice of daily living and transform this into a state of being!

The key is moving and being within your center. Staying grounded in your own state of harmony and grace and not allowing yourself, others, or things to disrupt you. Furthermore you must be conscious at all times to be able to make the choice action that will allow you to stay center and be effortless in your response, instead being natural and flowing with the energy and dynamics of life and the situation/circumstances at hand.

Bruce Lee has a famous saying, "Be Like Water" and this is so powerful, yet so fluid and every in a state of constant motion, adapting to its surroundings persistently yet with great patience and without force making it ways where ever that way must be in the present moment. Water does not react, water acts and feels the energy of the forces in and around it moving in the direction that best suits the situation yet always remaining true to itself, in its own state of grace and harmony!

"Be Formless, shapeless like water. Now if you put water into a cup it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle it becomes the bottle, you put it into a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash, be water my friend." Bruce Lee

As a student I only reflect on my experiences and what they are teaching me in the moment. I share to generate thought, discussion on an intellectual and philosophical level. This is not a case of right versus wrong, but more a sense of curiousity and wonder, leaving me with a sense of awe inspiring Wowisms.

"My" Life truly has come to a place where I reside in a certain way. The person I am today, right now is due to the culmination of all my life experiences. I find myself to be like water and in a conscious search for center, and understanding of what that is but with no attachment to being there or finding it. I realize that I am the center, I am already there! I am water, I am effortless and I am so therefore I am.

To define me is to help create understanding but to understand me is to know that an definition I offer now will be different later for there is no definition, there is no definitive! To refer to 'my'self, I, the I am is no more than a descriptive of, not a fact or statement or definition. I have come to a place where I am moving towards the effortless effort of life and existence. I am being in harmony with the way to my best ability.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Guilty! Yep and no surprise! I tell you though, judging myself, others or other things has truly never served a purpose other than to make me realize that judging myself, others and other 'things' does no good for anyone or anything, including myself.

Truly, who am I too judge myself, others, and other things in life? Observation yes, for the purpose of learning and growing but judging for what purpose, to make myself feel better or in many cases worse. Who am I to tell someone else that their way is wrong or this or that, I mean I am not the Guru of all Guru, the knower and wise of all things so how can I possibly know what is best for another.

Taking an attitude and state of being of compassion, gratitude, unconditional love, forgiveness, humility, honor, respect, appreciation, a beginners outlook, a soft gaze, a students perspective, an empty cup, and so on brings me beyond judgement to a place of observation and peace. Looking at life through this lens brings clarity and beauty to all situations and the ability to see the perfection in the moment, beyond the rose colored lens that I used to believe life to be. The challenge was I was the only one who could see out of these lens and know I feel I can share my lens and others can see with their own 2 eyes.

Being non judgemental is a change for most of us, this I respect and understand. Being conscious, living in a state of conscious, where we slow down and move with the Tortoise rather than the Hare will enable us to be aware of our current state of being and thus when we are acting with unconditional love vs conditional love, i.e. Judgement!

Again, it is not for me to tell you what is best for you. I will say that the change for me has offered me and the others I encounter so much more, at least from my lens. I do however encourage you to take the plunge and give it a walk and see for your eyes, through your lens or maybe even mine what it is like.

I do not judge you for saying no, I just offer you unconditional love and ask that you share so we can both learn and in turn share.

My first Yoga Teaching Gig

Well about time I stepped up and took the opportunity to share my yoga practice and the general practice of yoga with others. 9 months after my certification with Marianne Wells and my awesome group and after many classes, much reading and studying I have lost my virginity and taught my first 2 yoga classes yesterday. Both of these were sub opportunities at Darshana Yoga in Palo Alto. Regular gigs are on the way but not until I am back from Australia/New Zealand in May

I had nervous excitement going into the classes. All week I spent time read, reviewing, designing and meditating in my preparation for wanting to do the best I could do, which is to be perfect, LOL! Yeah, even I have a perfectionist mentality at certain points. Well after all is said and done I am very pleased with the classes and so grateful to open up a new door.

A teacher is a teacher, and a coach is a coach and that is obvious too me. I am conscious of what I am and what I do and so honored and having a clear perspective made this whole experience that much easier. After 13 years of working with folks in the health and wellness field it is clear that my path is leading me to my perfect place(s). Being in that yoga room with those students was the perfect place.

As I sat and observed while teaching, removing myself from the experience and attachment that things had to be done a certain way, I felt an effortlessness to the effort, I did become water and flow. In fact I had class plans written and sitting next too me but part way through, being conscious and present with the students I adjusted because I felt them and where they were at and maybe needed to go.

So many lessons are present in every moment if we are present to them. Being a coach and teacher makes me a student, a better student because I realize that when I am teaching/coaching that I am presenting numerous lessons for the students and opening doors for them to enter if they so please.

Looking forward to more Yoga teaching in the future. I have one more sub gig lined up and now I am more ready to fill in when possible and more important start teaching regularly in May!!!!

Friday, January 23, 2009

4 thought provoking questions

* Are you breathing?
* Are you meditating to calm your mind and cleanse it of negativity?
* To what extent are your thoughts fear-based or judgmental and making you suffer?
* What would your life be like if you stopped judging everything/everyone and accepted everything the way it is, yourself included?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Kettlebells and Strength Workshop Jan 31st

Who: Jordan Vezina, RKC and Myself
When Jan 31st from 9 to 4pm
Where: Crossfit Silicon Valley, San Jose
Cost: $150

Open to the public

About Jordan:

Jordan is an RKC certified kettlebell instructor and ISSA certified fitness trainer working out of Mark Reifkind Master RKC's Girya in Palo Alto, California. Jordan has attended workshops held by Steve Cotter and Jason C. Brown, as well as Pavel Tsatsouline's flexibility and abdominal training seminar.
Jordan spent five years in the Marine Corps Infantry as well as one year in the California National Guard Infantry. In addition to his experience in the military Jordan has also been employed as a bodyguard by Gavin DeBecker and Associates before turning his full attention to personal training.

Jordan was a competitor in the Open Class of the April 2008 Tactical Strength Challenge and in the Elite Division of the September 2008 Tactical Strength Challenge. He is currently training for the Beast Challenge, April 2008 TSC Elite Division, and RKC II in June.

Monday, January 19, 2009

7 soul commitments, check this out! WOW!

The Seven Soul Commitments

The First Soul~Commitment
I commit to realizing my full potential for both closeness and
autonomy. I open myself to learning about and honoring my essence rhythms and to learning about and honoring those rhythms in others.
The important thing to remember is that all of us have needs both for closeness and for alone-time. If you come from a back¬ground where you developed an ease for being by yourself, your learning edge may be to cultivate that same ease for being with people. If you are by nature comfortable with closeness, your learn¬ing edge may be to get comfortable with yourself as your only company.

The Second Soul~Commitment
I commit to full expression, to holding back nothing. This means
telling the truth about everything, including my feelings, my
fantasies, and my actions. I commit to telling the unarguable truth-
truth that no one can argue with-instead of giving my opinions,
beliefs, and prejudices. I also commit to listening, non-
judgmentally, to what people say to me.
In our families of origin, people did not tell the truth about their
feelings. Instead of speaking about their fears, sadness’s, dreams,
and desires, they often hid them inside. Like most people, they had
had no education or modeling about telling the truth about feel¬ings,
and they probably didn't know how.

The Third Soul~Commitment
I commit to becoming the source of full responsibility for my life,
including my happiness, my wellbeing, and my life goals. I absolve
everyone, living or dead, past or present, from any implication that
they cause my feelings or actions in any way.
Sourcing responsibility is perhaps the toughest commitment to honor.
In spite of our good intentions, education, and intelligence, we
still have a strong tendency to run for the victim position when we
felt threatened. When we are upset, it always looks like the other
person's fault.
Relationships only exist between equals. Each of us has 100 percent responsibility to create our connection because we are each whole beings. People get into trouble when they stop acting from full creative participation. If you take less than 100 percent
responsibility, it's easy to feel that other people are at fault. As
man says to his wife, "If you'd just stand still for a moment, I
wouldn't feel so chaotic!"
It's usually easier for us to recognize what we call a victim role,
taking less than 100 percent responsibility, than it is to
ac¬knowledge the problems caused by taking more than 100 percent responsibility. If you're drawn to criticize or correct your partner, especially if it's for their own good, it may be difficult to see
your actions as an attempt to control. The truly uncomfortable
confron¬tation with yourself comes from recognizing the helpful
suggestions and debris collection as the disrespectful gestures they
are. When we take more than 100 percent responsibility, we
communicate to our partners, "You are not capable, and I need to take over here because I'm right."
There are three maddening role possibilities if we aren't taking
healthy responsibility: persecutor, rescuer, or victim. Only three
choices-but the combinations, skirmishes, and escalations they
generate can look at first like real connecting. Some people even
mistake the dramas caused by playing these roles for a relationship.
Relationship is not possible within these roles, only entangle¬ment
and encumbrance. As Edna St. Vincent Millay once said, “It’s not one thing after another. It's the same damn thing over and over."

The Fourth Soul~Commitment
When faced with the choice between being happy and being defensive, I commit to choosing happiness. I commit to doing this especially in those situations when my defensiveness seems most warranted and when it is totally obvious to me that I am right and the other person is wrong.
Choosing happiness and harmony in a relationship is the most radical thing lovers can do. For many it can be like setting forth into the unknown in terms of our genetic histories.

The Fifth Soul~Commitment
I commit to learning to love and appreciate myself and others in my
close relationships.
Learning to love ourselves is one of the key lessons of the
con¬scious heart. One reason that traditional religions have lost
favor today is that shame pervades their teachings. People now seem to be tired of feeling bad about themselves. Over the past few decades, a new wave of psychology and spirituality has swept the world, a wave that is cleansing the old shame-based spirituality from our minds and bodies. The shame-based model is still firmly in control in much of the world, however, and if we look deeply enough, most of us can find it in the cells of our own beings. To love ourselves, and to become a space in which others can love themselves, is a high calling and a foundation stone of the path.
Psychologist John Gottman's extensive marital research indi¬cates
that in relationships that thrive, the ratio of appreciations to
criticisms is at least five to one.

The Sixth Soul~Commitment
I commit to the full expression of my creativity, and to inspiring
the full creative expression of those around me
When you commit to the full expression of creativity and to
facilitating the creativity of people around you, a major shift
hap¬pens in your relationship. For one thing, making this commitment ends control. It’s amazing the amount of energy people spend trying to control things and people that are outside their control. Many people seem to think that others are there only to be controlled by them. The key to any spiritual path is to release control. It is fine and wise to have goals and plans, but if you think you can control exactly where you are going and how you are going to get there, you are thumbing your nose at the universe. If you think you know where your partner should go, look out.
The Seventh Soul~Commitment
I commit to celebration as the dominant emotional tone of my relationships. Particularly, I commit to celebrating the essence of myself and those close to me.
Life works better when we commit to living in waves of learning and
appreciation rather than in contractions of control. This commitment
won't stop the occasional spasm of control, but it will let you and
the universe know that you do not plan to take them as seriously.
When you commit to celebration as an operating principle, you set a
high emotional tone for your relationship. The dictionary tells us
that to celebrate is "to praise and honor publicly" and "to have a
convivial good time." Convivial, by the way, comes from the Latin
word convivium, "a banquet or feast." Both of these intentions are
important to a spiritual path. When we can praise and honor publicly
your close relationships and live in them as an ongoing feast, you
are using your relationships fully.
Celebration moves happiness into a higher gear by bringing more
people to the feast. When you publicly appreciate your relationship,
you inspire the heartfelt participation of your larger community.
You widen the circle of essence by sharing the full expression of

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Marines & RKC"s join forces

You have one of those 'experiences' the kind that make you go WOW, that is an incredible way to spend a few days. Well, I did this past couple days spending time at Camp Pendleton with the United States Marine Corp and fellow RKC's. This is by far one of those memorable times as a teacher. The reasons are numerous but let me say it is not often you get to work with a group of people who are all eager, dedicated, attentive, open, and humble as the group I experienced this past weekend.

I will say that these men were filled with honor, a sense of respect and gratitude, humor, willingness and open mind to learn and explore, and hungry! I have the utmost respect for our military as I know it is not them who chooses our foreign policy but it is them who represents us! And as in anything there is always your bad apples or seeds but in this group there was nothing but the BEST! and it showed. What an honor it was to serve them and be able to share the field with these men for 2 days. I would gladly do it again, anytime, anywhere! We are fortunate to have such a strong and good group of men serving us (PS: no women in the group this is why the men comments only).

In addition, the group of RKC's was nothing but a fine group of people to work with as I have grown to understand as this is my 4th experience at an RKC training. A special thank you to all of them who took the time like myself to express our gratitude to the men and women who serve this country and our people.

with respect, honor and gratitude

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

May the Force be with you!

When you apply force you encounter resistance. In some cases this may indeed be the way, for instance in 'lifting" weights like a deadlift, squat, etc. However in most cases applying your force is counterproductive! For instance apply force against another human whether physical, emotional, intellectual, mental, or spiritual. To work and be in harmony and balance with your own state of being is living a life without limits and this will help others in their process even if they do not be in the same way. But if they are aware and are curious and wish to move with the energy of life then they will feel and see that there may be another way, maybe even a better way but this is in the discretion of them, not us. We again are not applying our force against theirs but instead moving with the flow of life.

After all, do you wish to be the Salmon swimming up stream as the Bear awaits you or do you wish to go with the flow of the water and move in the direction of the wave, stream, etc. One would seem to be the path of least resistance and one not!

The beauty of it is you have a choice, so I encourage you to be like water and do not be your own worst enemy but your one true love, your best friend!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The practice continues to open doors

As the new year begins my practice of living, my art of living continues to evolve. Each day I practice with a sense of wonder and freedom to explore the integration of mind, body, spirit, soul, intellect, energy, and the art and creativity behind it all.

I have begun the practice of the Art of Aikido which is now integrated with my daily Yoga Practice and my Strength/Conditioning work with the KB's, deadlifts and pull-ups. Overall I have found through the first couple weeks a wonderful complimentary integration of movement practices and philosophies. Each is built on a foundation of principles and concepts that blend in a beautiful Picasso of Art. The beauty of this is that I get to learn the art of living in each of these practices with a unique languaging behind each practice but the same flow, the same philosophy.

I find myself having daily epiphanys about life, movement, energy, poses, exercises, relationships, etc. I find myself open to the possibilities and I find myself having to drop the "I", the 'me' and truly allow all this, all this wonderful wisdom of years of practice, of laws of the universe to seep deep into my pores to my inner essence to the point where all the details, all the forms, techniques, concepts, principles become a natural state of being, not a thought process, not an action or response but truly a way, the way of living and being in each and every moment. There is no condition, there just is the unconditional, the way due to hours of practice, of conscious awareness in movement and out of movement, in being present with all the wisdom and opportunity at my doorstep.

In turn what happens is a massive movement and integrative progression of all things coming together and doors opening to areas I knew possible but until this point where not available because I was not ready.

The beauty of it all is I do not care, I am not attached to any of this because it is just a way, my way and it is what it is. If anything I am grateful and humble and have a great sense of honor and respect and feel I must share to my best capabilities with all, to present a way and to say thank you to all my masters and show them my respect and gratitude for taking time to teach me the ways and the possibility and for opening the doors of curiousity, exploration and wonder while providing tools to excavate, dig, discover, examine the limitless and endless possibilities.

It truly is only the beginning and that is all it ever will be....maybe :-) Time will tell =)

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Wondering and Awe

The practice continues, each and every moment of each and every day! Another great day it is. As I move through the continium of life I just find myself more and more in a sense of awe and wonder at the workings of the universe. I am so humbled and blessed to be moving through life in this vehicle I have.

That being said I realize just how important it is to care for my vehicle on ALL levels, remembering to nourish everyday with good food, good living habits, healthy thoughts, great people, rest, and of course full of unconditional love. I am finding that all this stuff is really simple to do and just continues to give back in ways that I cannot even imagine and reaches beyond me and this is key.

I am open to the possibilities and because of this I find so much is coming my way, so many wonderful projects, etc. that I can contribute to and that are contributing to so much more than I alone (at this point) can do. Being non-attached and open and leaving the ego at the door, coming from a state of wonder, a state of unconditional love and deep sense of gratitude and humbleness really brings the fruit of the trees to bear.

Each day I am observing so much through my daily practice, my daily movement through the existence of being that I find myself wanting to stay up 24 hours a day, and be everywhere because there is just so much to experience, see, do and be and there is so many wonderful and amazing things happening all leaves me going WOW!, and as my friend Kendrick would say, to blessed to be stressed.

You can take from this what you will because that is the beauty of it, I am just honored to have a place to share and people who enjoy. I thank you for the opportunity to share my existence and happenings/experiences with you and thank you for being a source of inspiration in my life!!!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Looking forward, Being Present

Another great day, another great year in 2009. Wow, what a fantastic voyage life has been to this point. The road has indeed been a long and windy one with so many interstesting twists, turns, ups, downs, forks, climbs, descents, terrain, views, opportunities, experiences and so on. I foresee another such year ahead and I am open to the journey, eager to experience each moment with an open mind, heart and a unconditional love for my being and all that I encounter.

Upon reflection I realize life is truly what it is and it is what you make out of it. Easier said than done?, in my view no because life is state of being, a state of choice that we all have to make. Are some roads more challenging than others, without a doubt. In fact I would never want to diminish or disrespect another for where there are, who they are, what they are, what and how they do it. It is through interacting and sharing with others that I learn and experience. It does indeed take all kinds to make the world go round.

Now, with all this being said I do believe that through self-realization we can then and do then come to a point where we are left with self-actualization. Realization is the first step, accepting and embracing what we realize is one of the next steps and then acting on it and turning our dreams, wishes, desires or GOALS into reality is the next step otherwise known as self-actualization.

So, this year I am continuing to actual what I have realized to this point in time. I am a an adventurer, a curious one who loves to explore life, people, culture, history, new frontiers, who wants to discover, uncover and experience life each and everyday. I then take such experiences and share with people as way to learn and grow and in the process come to a point where we all can act on our realizations and turn our goals, dreams, etc, into reality.

The start to this year has been just like last year, a continued daily practice into the art of living and being. I am not certain what this year will bring in terms of tangible stuff, only time will tell. I can say this I am creating and putting things together, making things happen as I always do and I see one heck of an adventurous year filled with quality experiences, quality peoples, quality opportunities.

I do not expect, I do not hope, I just do and I put it out there and turn it into action. I am not afraid of failure because I personally do not believe in failure, I realize that there is only life and living and if I am not putting myself out there and doing it, then I am missing out on something that I might otherwise learn and grow from and which may then in turn be able to benefit others.

See, I have been blessed with some AMAZING gifts, abilities, talents, skills, etc. and I am fostering them. I realize that I am here to do great things beyond myself and that I have a way to translate and communicate that is effective at reaching across borders, boundaries. I am humbled to have this ability and I honor these gifts each day with unconditional love and peace.

Therefore, through my realization I live life to the fullest each and everyday sharing the gifts I have been given and experienced and sharing in that of others. Each day I am grateful for what has been presented and I am open and non-attached to what happens.
So yet another day, not just any day but today I live life to the fullest, open to the experience and looking forward to sharing the love of life with all that I encounter.