“My belly is disgusting” and other nonsense

The habit of speaking cruelly to your body parts can be so deeply ingrained, that you don’t even realize you’re doing it. Looking in the mirror might trigger the thought, “Ick, my body hair keeps growing in the ugliest ways.” Or as you glance down in the shower you might utter, “Damn, my skin is getting grosser every year.” As you try to find the most flattering way to tuck in your shirt, you might frown at your middle, “I’m so embarrassed by you, you jiggly belly.” Sometimes I am downright shocked at the thoughts I hear banging around my

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The weird moment I was called to be a yoga teacher

The reason I became a yoga teacher is simple: I was called. It happened 12 years ago when I was in a forward fold at a 6am yoga class at the Westwood LA YogaWorks. I attended those early classes because I had to be on the 9th floor of an adjacent office building by 9am. It was the only desk job I’ve ever had – as an assistant in Exhibitor Services for the American Film Market. Surprise surprise, corporate lifestyle isn’t the best fit for Ariel. I would restlessly pace circles around the circumference of cubicles in the morning, then

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Notes from the Idyllwild vision quest

I am here to report on the vision quest I did over the past weekend. It was… intense. I began fasting on Thursday afternoon at 4:30pm, intending to drink only water for the next three days – until Sunday at 4:30pm. After my final evening client, I stuffed outdoorsy gear into the back of the 4Runner and hit the road for Joshua Tree. Driving away from LA on the 10 Freeway was wonderful. I’ve been in a pretty disciplined routine for a couple of months and if felt so good to cut and run toward the wilderness. Arriving around 10pm

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The Key to Becoming Your Whole, Unapologetic Self

Just because you can’t ‘see’ it, doesn’t mean that the evidence of it isn’t… everywhere. This is the story of trauma in our everyday lives. If you have survived an intense or overwhelming incident (or series of incidents) such as verbal or physical abuse, surgery, assault, an accident, or ongoing gas-lighting from a significant person in your life…. it’s possible there‘s trauma in your energy body. Trauma is the imprint of the incomplete survival response: You felt a threat, you instinctively wanted to protect or defend yourself, but you were unable to do so at that time. The animal that

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