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Can we change how we deal with change?

We come to a yoga class hoping to change something, decrease our pain or strengthen our core perhaps. But on the other hand when we like how things are going, we don’t want them to change. How many of us don’t want summer to end & fall to start? So change is something we want, yet we resist it when it doesn’t suit us. Can we really have change both ways?

When we realize that we can’t always control what happens to us, but it is our reaction to it what happens that we can control, change becomes easier to find & accept. Using our yoga practice as a place to cultivate mindfulness we can help to change the things we want. At the same time we help build a resilience to respond in a healthy way to change that we don’t want.

Through our practice, we can learn to accept ourselves as we are & to stop living in the future waiting for such & such to begin. We learn to begin NOW & allow each part of the process to help us get to that end goal. What tends to happen when we stop living for the “some day” & accept now as it is, we find it is easier to get where we want. As a bonus, we may even find another path that is even better than we originally wanted.

These are words coming from a recovering procrastinator. I wanted to do things to change my life for the better, but self doubt & fear would stop me from starting, or starting but not following it through. I realized, it is because I wanted to have that instant gratification. When I did something I wanted to see the results, & if I’m completely honest, I didn’t always want to do all the work needed. Would the effort give me the results, I’m not sure, so why bother? So over & over my way of doing things gave the same results, the change I want didn’t happen. So I would procrastinate, thinking later I’ll be able to do it, but later didn’t always come.

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. - Albert Einstein.

Einstein has a point, I was feeling a bit crazy wanting change but not changing how to get it, or was it the change itself that I was afraid of? What if the change that came was not what I wanted at all? So at times I would say to myself“ I like to keep things as they are, they are not what I want, but staying the same feels safer than the unknown”. But as life has it, change happens anyways & because I never made the effort, I didn’t like the results. I was repeating the same pattern & resisting change instead.

I now see that it is just taking the small steps, & being conscious of when I begin to avoid something, that will take me towards that end goal. To set the intention to cultivate what I need right now that will help take me to the finish line. Change itself is circular. We begin to change something, then it has a life, then it ends & is replaced with another thing, or action. It is these moments of beginnings & endings that propel us to where we want to go. It’s unrealistic to think we can take such big leaps & expect we’ll make it to the other side unscathed. Once we fully embrace this idea that change happens moment to moment, that change comes our way even in the moments between our trying, things start to fall into place. It is our acceptance that change is in each moment of time & it is not the end all be all, it is through this process that we progress in life.

So instead of focusing on the change, what we want or don’t want, can we focus on now, as that is all we really have. The rest is not decided yet. We can just cultivate the tools that will help us with change in it’s many forms.

There is a simple meditation called Sat Nam, from the Kundalini tradition that I have been using in my practice & teaching for a while now. It can be used to help us break old patterns of behaviour & to embrace change for what it is, something that will happen whether we want it or not. Using this meditation has taught me to embrace the process of change instead of just wishing for or avoiding it. So even if the change I want doesn’t happen, I can meet what comes my way from a place of strength instead of fear.

Also, see below to check out the link to the article - practical tips to embrace change.

Looking for a way to help with change in your life, check out my classes @ workshops by going to


Anne Cox E-RYT 500


SAT NAM OR KIRTAN KRIYA (to honour truth)

This is a meditation chant exercise originating from Kundalini Yoga that involves chanting and using finger poses (mudras).

This simple exercise reduces stress levels, increases circulation in the brain, promotes focus and clarity, and stimulates mind-body-spirit connection all while breaking old patterns of behaviour.

From 6-12 minutes once a day

  1. Sit in an upright position on the floor or in a straight-backed chair. Rest your hands on your knees with palms facing upwards. You can even practice this lying down as a way to help you go inwards so you can find rest & ease.

  2. Chant the syllables Sa, Ta, Na, Ma - lengthen the ending of each sound as you repeat them, ...aaaaaaaaah.

  3. Touch your index finger tip to the tip of your thumb as you chant Sa.

  4. Touch your middle finger tip to the tip of your thumb as you chant Ta.

  5. Touch your ring finger tip to the tip of your thumb as you chant Na.

  6. Touch your pinky tip to the tip of your thumb as you chant Ma.

  7. Do the finger movements as shown in steps 3-6 as you chant in the following sequence:

  • Chant out loud for 2 minutes

  • Chant in a whisper for 2 minutes

  • Chant in silence for 2-4 minutes (stop here or add next 2 steps)

  • Chant in a whisper for 2 minutes

  • Chant out loud for 2 minutes

** If at first this seems a bit lengthy, try 1 min for each step or just try it in your own way…..they key is to just do it. Even try while lying down with hands resting beside you as a way to help you find rest**

Sanskrit chanting sounds Sa Ta Na Ma translates to

birth, life, death, rebirth (the cycle of life, habits, ideas….)

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