I’ve compiled a list of resources that you may find helpful with regards to learning more about yoga and the specific influences I’ve encountered along my path of practice.  As your practice grows, please feel free to contact me with any helpful resources you’ve discovered along the way!


Yoga of Discipline (also called Gurumayi) – Swami Chidvilisananda
In this collection of 14 talks on yogic discipline, Gurumayi Chidvilasananda discusses discipline in seeing, hearing, eating, speaking, and thinking.

Yoga from the Inside Out: Making Peace With Your Body Through Yoga – Christina Sell
This is a lovely book/memoir about School of Yoga founder Christina Sell’s journey to yoga, and the benefits it has brought her and her students through the years. It’s a deeply personal book, matching Christina’s vital teaching style, and is a wonderful book to answer the question “Why do yoga?”

My Body is a Temple – Christina Sell

Spiritual Cannibalism – Rudi (Swami Rudrananda)
This book grabbed me from the start by a quote on the back which says essentially that life is perfect as a whole, that the pain is part of its perfection, and that in order to truly live we must consume and digest life in its entirety. Wow. It’s relatively short and each word is genuine and rich.

The Yoga of Eating – Charles Eisenstein
The Yoga of Eating is a brief treatise on applying yogic principles to diet. It emphasizes mindfulness and attention to the experience of eating as well as the emotions and philosophy surrounding what we ingest.

Every time I read this magazine it enriches me. Each article is full of wisdom and authenticity. It’s kind of expensive but totally worth it.

Yoga Journal
A wonderful resource both for inspiration and information. The first time I read Yoga Journal I absorbed it from cover to cover. I still do.

Facebook: Ninja Yogis
Ninja Yogis is a place to share your yoga poses off the mat. Strike a pose, take a pic and post. Have fun!


Bhakti Fest
I’ve attended Bhakti Fest 2 years in a row. It’s an amazing experience, well worth the time and energy to go. Check out videos on the website!

Emotional Freedom Technique
EFT, also referred to as tapping, is a useful method to help process intense emotions. Tapping points along the face and body while repeating statements regarding the emotion helps the practitioner move through and beyond the crest of the intensity. EFT is considered an essential tool in energy psychology.

Dr. John Sarno
A medical doctor whose work revolves around the treatment of TMS, tension myositis syndrome. His essential premise is that intense chronic pain masks underlying emotions, is in fact a red herring used by the body to avoid having the feel uncomfortable emotions. Being willing to have the emotions allows the person to transcend the physical pain, as it no longer needs to be there to distract from the emotion.


A contemporary kirtan artist whose softness and authenticity shine through in her music.

Krishna Das
Has been performing kirtan for many years. He lived for a number of years in India under his guru with Ram Dass. Having seen KD live several times I am always taken with his disarming humor and dedication.

Deva Premal
The first time I heard Deva Premal I was transported. Her voice is ethereal and exquisite. She is German, raised around kirtan and yoga. She and her partner Miten travel around the world performing and doing workshops.

Jai Uttal
To be honest, the first time I hear Jai Uttal I was bored. It was really late at night at Bhakti fest and I was exhausted from hours of yoga and kirtan. Then I heard his song Nataraja and found it deeply stirring. The next time I went to Bhakti I made certain to take special time to listen to him. He was warm and engaging and I was very grateful I took the time to listen. Jai Uttal is considered by many to be the reason kirtan is part of the modern music scene in its current fashion.

Knowing Your Body

One of the things that I have found most illuminating, meaningful and profound throughout practicing yoga and massage has been the ways in which I have come to know my body.  When I began practicing, I saw my body as a tool to be used, something that needed to obey my decisions.  Now I would say that I see my body more as a companion and a friend, which will almost always do what I ask as long as I am caring, informed and compassionate.

No matter what your current relationship with your body is, here are some questions you can ask to help deepen and cement it:

1) How much sleep is ideal for me?

Enough sleep is without a doubt one of the top 5 things we can give ourselves to foster good health.  Sleep deprivation has serious effects on your health:

For some of us, when we get “enough sleep” we feel overtired.  I say, stick with it.  See if you can schedule a few days in a row where you sleep as much as you want, as much as you can.  The first day you may feel logy and sluggish.  But by the third day or so, notice the amount of energy you have.  Notice the amount of patience you have.  Notice how your state of mind and heart feel.  For me I find when I do this that I feel much more capable of making sound decisions and that my perspective shifts from one of constant running to one of calm and contentment, but with vitality!

Once you get into this place, then it’s time to see how much sleep works for you.  Go to bed at a reasonable hour so that you won’t need an alarm clock to wake up.  (For those with children, I realize that the “alarm clock” will happen no matter what you do.  But try going to bed earlier.) See how many hours seems to be the magic number. For me the ideal amount is about 8 1/2 hours.

2) What do I need to eat and how often?

I have recently increased my level of physical activity significantly.  I find myself in a place where I don’t know how to eat to support my body most appropriately.  So I am experimenting with the frequency and content of my food.  Studies indicate that when we crave sweets, our bodies are sometimes demanding protein and/or other vitamins and nutrients.  So I am working on increasing my protein intake, climbing back on the vitamin wagon, and building time in to my schedule for meals, a new thing for me.

The relationship with food can be so multi-layered.  Feelings of shame and deprivation and award systems and addiction are often built into our relationship with eating.  Through the practice of yoga over the last 15 years or so, my relationship with food has changed.  I eat now based on how foods make me feel rather than just blindly reaching out to satisfy a craving or push something else away or because I feel sad or worthless.  But I couldn’t have come to this relationship if I didn’t have other things in place to make me feel good like doing yoga, spending time with people I love, going to see a movie if I feel like it, etc.

There is no mountain so big that it cannot be climbed one step at a time.  If your relationship with food is a troubled one, start by just noticing how what you eat make you feel, physically.  Then you can notice the emotional and psychological aspects of it and reach for things that make you feel on the better side compared to the worse side.  What makes your stomach feel happy?  What do you digest most easily?  What gives you long-lasting steady energy?

3) What is my ideal fitness regimen?

Getting and staying physically fit has been a struggle for me in the past.  I have a tendency to get obsessive about a kind of activity and then drop it.  Yoga has been the only consistent for of physical activity that has lasted me for the long haul thusfar, and even that has its ebb and flow.

Try a lot of different things.  Dancing, running, walking, weight-lifting, Zumba, martial arts, CrossFit, swimming, kickboxing, step aerobics, basketball, pole dancing, soccer, yoga, gymnastics, Acro-yoga, aerial silks, the sky is the limit.  There is a style of fitness out there for everyone.  When taking a class on pranayama with Dr. Vasant Lad, he instructed us in various breathing exercises that were so intense physically that for at least one of them he told us that just breathing in that manner was akin to running a mile.  And it felt like it too!


The process of all of this can seem Sisyphean at times.  But if you consider that idea that living in this body is a constant unfolding of knowledge and experience, the attainment of physical fitness becomes less of a far-off goal and more of a process of getting to know yourself.  It can be truly enjoyable.

Feel free to email or comment.  I can be reached at

Holiday Moderation

Every year around this time I get anxious anticipating the parties, candies, cakes, nogs, and general excess that accompany the celebration of the winter holidays.  I love the idea of observing moderation during the holidays, but the moderation itself can be elusive amid the onslaught.  Here are some simple tricks to help make your holidays feel more wholesome without losing the joy.

  1. Start your day off right.  Even 5 minutes of meditation can set the tone for a peaceful day.  When we feel calm inside we are less likely to overindulge, lose our tempers, and make hasty decisions that we might regret later.  If you have more than 5 minutes, you can try 5 minutes of deep slow breathing followed by the repetition of an affirmation or mantra, like “Today I am at peace”.  Say it out loud, whisper it, or repeat it in your head for the next 5 minutes.  Then at the end be silent and observe your breath for 5 minutes.  These 15 minutes can make a world of difference in the experience of your day.
  2. Prepare your stomach.  Of the many detoxes, cleanses, fasts, and health programs I’ve followed, nearly all of them recommend beginning your day with a cup of hot water and lemon.  It tonifies your stomach and eases your digestion into activity.  Lemon acts as an alkalizer internally, creating disease resistance.  Plus taking a minute to appreciate and savor the warmth and fullness of such a simple drink can set a lovely tone of gratitude for the rest of the day.
  3. Chew more.  Having recently begun paying attention to how many times I chew my food before I swallow, I am amazed at the difference I feel after I eat.  If you are a person who tends to plow through your food (no shame in it, we’ve all been there) you may find that your digestion improves dramatically as well as the amount you eat being significantly less per sitting.  this bodes well for keeping holiday weight gain at a minimum and appreciation of the nourishing food you eat at a maximum!
  4. Consider celebrating your holidays in a different way.  For example, if you find that after New Year’s Eve you always start off your new year with a hangover, perhaps there is an alternative but fun way to spend the night.  Chem-free parties, inviting a few friends over to talk through the year and set intentions, going for a night hike, going to a New Year’s Eve yoga class, all of these are fun and different ways to spend your holiday.  Starting a new tradition might be just the thing you need to start a powerful shift in your life!
  5. Forgive.  If you have an off day (or an off night) and find yourself on the other side of a spate of indulgence, treat yourself as you would your best friend.  Give yourself a hug, tell yourself you are a perfectly good person and that you love yourself enough to continue to dedicate time and energy to feeling good.  No one is perfect; we are all doing the best we can.  There is always another opportunity to make a positive choice!

If you are interested in more holiday tips or help with detoxing please feel free to email me to learn more. Good luck and Happy Holidays!