Meditation · Uncategorized

What is Reiki?

No, it’s not witchcraft.
A brief overview from The International Center for Reiki Training
Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing. It is administered by “laying on hands” and is based on the idea that an unseen “life force energy” flows through us and is what causes us to be alive. If one’s “life force energy” is low, then we are more likely to get sick or feel stress, and if it is high, we are more capable of being happy and healthy.

The word Reiki is made of two Japanese words – Rei which means “God’s Wisdom or the Higher Power” and Ki which is “life force energy”. So Reiki is actually “spiritually guided life force energy.”

A treatment feels like a wonderful glowing radiance that flows through and around you. Reiki treats the whole person including body, emotions, mind and spirit creating many beneficial effects that include relaxation and feelings of peace, security and wellbeing. Many have reported miraculous results.
Reiki is a simple, natural and safe method of spiritual healing and self-improvement that everyone can use. It has been effective in helping virtually every known illness and malady and always creates a beneficial effect. It also works in conjunction with all other medical or therapeutic techniques to relieve side effects and promote recovery.
An amazingly simple technique to learn, the ability to use Reiki is not taught in the usual sense, but is transferred to the student during a Reiki class. This ability is passed on during an “attunement” given by a Reiki master and allows the student to tap into an unlimited supply of “life force energy” to improve one’s health and enhance the quality of life.

Ready to give it a try?

This Friday you can get a lil taste of Reiki in this chakra balancing yoga class. Regiester in advance to save $

Lifestyle · Meditation

Mindfulness & Grief

For suicide prevention day, I wanted to make a video on mindfulness and grief. For those who might be new to my life, I lost my dad to suicide almost four years ago now. I spent over an hour making a 10 minute video. Starting over. Not knowing what to say. The authenticity was stolen. I gave up and went to study. A few hours into studying, Purple Rain comes on (my dad’s favorite song played at his funeral). I continue to work and not think about how much I miss him. The next song is What’s Going on (another song my dad would CONSTANTLY sing) and I decided to take it as a message to not let this day pass without sharing what I wanted to talk about.

 

Through the healing process I learned about mindfulness. For me, mindfulness was something that was healing me before I even knew it had a name. In short, mindfulness is allowing yourself to feel your feelings here and now. In grief or any really challenging situation mindfulness can be really helpful. Sometimes you might notice you do not know how to feel because you are so out of touch with your emotions, I’ve been there. In the early stages of grief I did everything I could to not feel. This resulted in panic attacks, and manifested a bunch of other issues then finally I went to grief counselling. I sat down on the stupid couch and said something like, “Hi my dad killed himself now I can’t figure out how to live and about how long is this whole healing thing going to take because I am very busy” My therapist retired a few weeks later. It’s funny now but that was my personality in a nutshell. In anxiety I overdo as an escape to feel. That’s why I needed a mindfulness practice.

 

As you might imagine, in difficult situations, it is of course far more challenging to sit with emotions because it is painful. We do not like pain. However sitting in discomfort can teach you so much about your healing process. Mindfulness is checking in and being curious about what comes up. Today when that song came on my first reaction was to push it away. I was “too busy to feel sad”. In that moment, I used mindfulness to check in and notice in a gentle way how I wanted to push it away because I am different now. I did not judge myself for that, I just noticed, there is a big difference. Mindfulness is a practice, there is no way to be perfect about it and if there were, it would not be true mindfulness. Perfectionism and mindfulness cannot coexist.

 

I invite you to put this into practice. Notice throughout your day how you judge people, or things, or even yourself. Then, ask yourself why you believe whatever that judgment is. Is it true? Start to notice if anything changes. Sit with whatever comes up and then let it go.

Lifestyle · Meditation · Yoga

Springtime & Solar Plexus Healing

Hello!

Happy  s p r i n g  and almost May! Spring is a great time to reflect on new beginnings and manifest something new. Often we have ideas running through our minds of how we want to change without ever considering how to make it happen. Spring is the season to sit with those thoughts, write some new goals, and analyze what you are being guided to try in all aspects of life.

Currently I am finally taking more time to myself for the next few weeks, it is a major change for me! I am equal parts excited to finish some projects and also bored thinking about how I will spend my extra time. Some people are really excited for a summer off to party and drink but I am mostly looking forward to a regular workout schedule and going to more yoga classes!

Lately my home yoga/meditation practice has been focused on balancing my solar plexus, the third chakra. Energetically this area holds space for your inner power. Stimulating this chakra involves healthy movement of energy to flow to help promote inner strength and personal power. A balanced Manipura (solar plexus) allows you to have healthy control over your thoughts and emotional responses while a weak Manipura may cause feelings of anxiety, poor self-image, and laziness. Here are some poses to try to promote a healthy third chakra:

5 Yoga Poses for Solar Plexus Balancing:

Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (bridge), Urdva Dhanurasana(wheel), any spinal twist, Ustrasana (camel), Virabhadrasana 1 (warrior 1)

*Wheel pose is not recommended in the middle of a pathway 

Whatever it means for you, act on something new and do not let it be a thought any longer. Take charge, make a change, step into your potential! Use these poses to help tune into your inner power!

If you are interested in additional help with balancing chakras, I have listed a new service (as requested 😉 ) on this page called “Private Yoga Chakra Balancing Sessions” scroll down the page to explore this offering. As always, if you would like to book a session please email me at whitneyreddy@gmail.com

 

 

Love & light,

Whitney Reddy

 

 

Lifestyle · Yoga

My 2018 Resolution.

The best thing you can do is to keep turning towards the light

I am not a fan of the whole concept of changing yourself because it’s a new year. Thinking that you are not perfect the way you are does not come from a space of love. Which is why this year I want to do things differently by setting an intention from a space of love.

My intention for 2018 is to remember where I come from; LOVE. To remember I come from love and to be more me as possible. 

To be yourself is to be as close to love as you can because love is what you come from. Non judgement, fearless, compassionate love.

In order for me to be more me, I have to challenge myself to choose love over fear. One of my favorite quotes from Wayne Dyer says, ” fear knocked on the door, love answered… and nobody was there”. Fear and love do not coexist.

These past few months I have hit a huge block. I was so stressed from spreading myself so thin I left no time for myself. My meditation practice only existed in order to ground myself before teaching and my workouts really just kept me from losing my shit all together. Getting through the next tough THING was my only focus. I had a very challenging semester of school along with teaching every day (sometimes 3 classes per day) and keeping my part-time job so I had some type of normal in my life. Fear kept sneaking in, rather than confronting it, most of the time I would run. Run on to whatever was next and push it down until I had time to deal with it.

Now, I have basically spent the past two weeks on the couch (first because I was sick, then because I still needed rest) and as I am reflecting on those last few months of 2017, I am still proud how I handled the mess I got myself in. Because I opened back up to love, I can choose to forgive myself and move the hell on rather than picking out everything I “should have done”.  I am proud because when I noticed myself taking on too much or feeling out of alignment I was so quick to throw on my headphones and listen to an inspirational podcast and go for a walk rather than something destructive. I am proud because I finally started saying no to opportunities I did not have time for that I REALLY wanted to be apart of. I was proud because when clients had to cut down on classes and appointments I did not take it personal and just accepted that it was actually what I needed in that moment and when the time was right we will work together again (already happening!).

Oftentimes fear causes me to shrink down resulting in a loss of creativity and magic. Feeling of dullness and detachment leave me stuck and uninspired to search for the light. I have a funny feeling it’s not just me.

Starting tomorrow, my life will be picking back up again at a fast pace. I will use the lessons I have learned so this time it will be different, I will keep turning to love. Instead of using fear, I will remember love and keep doing what works.

 

Do you have any new year resolutions? I would love to hear them!

 

Lifestyle

3 years. 

Tragedy doesn’t come to us just to torture us or because we have “bad karma” and life hates us. In fact I think it’s quite the opposite. It’s the shity moments where we hit the ground on our knees crying for help where we hear that voice that says, “finally, you’re ready to start”

That’s exactly what happened to me three years ago aka the shittiest day of my journey thus far. I’ll never forget that phone call I got at work because the police were looking for me nobody would tell me what happened. I tried calling my mom and she didn’t answer. I called my dad about a million times and he didn’t answer. I just assumed my entire family was dead and murdered in their sleep. It wasn’t until I finally got ahold of my brother (who I also thought was just dead) when I heard his voice “oh nobody told you yet… I’m sorry to be the one to tell you this but Dad is dead. It was suicide.” A statement that would change my life forever but not in the way you would expect.
I saw two different outcomes of my life I could take the easy road and give up continue taking drugs to hide the pain and get stuck in the cycle of self-sabotage or I could for once actually ask for help on taking the high road. I knew there was going to be a lot of work to get through this. No time was wasted when the right people showed up into my life; family, friends, teachers from all over the world came to help me heal because I believe that they would. 
I don’t tell different versions of this story every year because I like talking about myself and receiving pity in fact it’s the exact opposite. I absolutely dread talking about personal experiences. Sharing things so personal makes me cringe. However, because I know I had those specific people that helped me with their stories and their guidance I can only dream of being that type of help for someone desperately in need like I was.
Without the fall I would not have gotten back up and chose consciously to be happy and helpful and most of all start to heal my life. 
Coming back to the actual point of all of this is to never judge or label your circumstances as good or bad. Unfortunately sometimes it takes something so painful, especially death, to lead you in the right direction. Continue to be in the mindset of a student and recognize that the whole world (even if it sometimes feels like a fucked up play) is your teacher. That doesn’t mean you’re not going to hurt sometimes or you’re not going to miss people and wish they were still here it means learning to deal with your shit because we’re in this together. I’m sorry if you think differently.
Stay open and ask how you can serve.

Lifestyle · Meditation · Yoga

Finding Your Way Out

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Monday was Mental Health Day where social media was blasted with stories and awareness and although I am a few days late, I still would like to participate in this discussion. Stories are so powerful and hold a great opportunity for healing for both the writer and the reader.

This post may rub you the wrong way, you might think I believe mental health is not real. What I am actually explaining below is how I feel that mental health is as real as any emotion, thought, or physical illness. What is real anyway?

Yes, I believe depression is as real as a broken leg however, you are not a broken leg; your body has a broken leg. It is temporary and if you go see a trained professional it is their job to heal and fix the broken leg. Mental disorders like obsessive compulsive and generalized anxiety disorder work the same way. It may take multiple doctors and treatments but you can find healing because you are more than any illness or disorder, you are not stuck. From my experience it is not a one time fix all situation. It takes time, love, and patience. One week after you get the cast removed from a broken leg, you probably will not be running around and back to your old self again. You continue therapy and taking care of yourself. I imagine you learn a lot about yourself in this process, maybe how to avoid breaking your leg again or you realize the things you took for granted.

I could write about the handful of mental illnesses I have experienced and how real they felt in the moment but that is behind me now. I silently work every day to keep my shit together. I avoid gory movies because I am susceptible to anxiety and death trauma. I do not drink often because I know alcohol is a depressant. I exercise because it is a natural mood lifter (seriously, read the studies!). These are some examples of choices I make to mentally feel my best even though I have lived with crippling anxiety and depression. I’ve tried the medications and they did not work for me, so I had to figure it out myself through counseling and spiritual work.

When it comes down to it, thoughts are just thoughts (something one of my grief counselors told me which used to piss me off because I didn’t get it). You do not have to hold onto the thoughts in your mind. Turning a thought like “this is really scary I am going to have a panic attack…” to “that’s interesting that this situation gives my mind anxiety, I don’t feel like choosing that right now I can think about something else…” takes some serious practice but hey, if I can do it, I believe anyone can.

Here is a list of things that helped me snap out of it when I felt my mind taking over:

  1. Choose a different thought.
  2. Call a friend. You don’t have to tell them why, just hear someone else’s voice.
  3. Watch a video you think is funny.
  4. Take a break and go for a walk.
  5. Get grounded: walk near so trees, take off your shoes and get out of your head.

These choices seem very easy, and they are. When it comes down to it, you are choosing to do/think of something else and not give in to listening to the mind all the time, be the observer of the thoughts, that is who you really are.

Most of the quotes and ideas inspiring this post comes from one of my favorite books, The Untethered Soul which played a huge role in my healing process. I recommend you check it out if this resonates with you at all.

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Lastly, if you do feel captured by your mind with no way out there are services exactly for such purpose. Specifically the Nation Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255

Mental illness is hard to live with but I do not believe that you have to live with it all of the time. People are good and we are here to help each other by sharing stories and really listening to one another. Reach out and do whatever it takes to find healing whether it’s publicly or confidential. You will find your way out.