by Drisana Carey
Unless you live as a hermit or up in a serene Ashram, we are often presented with opportunities that challenge our ability to center ourselves.
Whether it’s guiding a yoga class, sitting in congested traffic, annoyed by screaming kids or “go time” at a big event, the way we perceive our surroundings can lead to overwhelming sensations and thoughts.
Here are some of the things I do to ground myself before the wave of energy connected to the event takes off.
1. Breathe, slowly, deeply and completely. This immediately shifts the mind from anywhere to the present moment. The breath has an incredible calming effect on the nervous system and it’s amazing how transformative something so simple and so vital can be.
2. If I’m really wound up or anxious, I like to change my perspective, literally stand on my head or hands and let the blood rush down to nourish my heart and my head. And come back to the Buddha’s words… The mind can be capricious, unruly, rushing wherever it pleases. Harnessing the mind will bring one happiness. Nothing can harm us more than our own unguarded thoughts and a well directed mind creates more happiness than even the loving actions of one’s parents.
3. Connecting with “Oneness.” I find great strength and solace in the realization that we are all pulsing with life and at the core of ourselves runs a river of love, joy, bliss, call it qi, prana whatever you name it. Disconnection from this awareness allows for suffering and when I sense true, authentic connection, joy bubbles up and I feel my cells delight. My head clears and play resumes. This is a precious gift that is always available.
4. Recognizing that we are all whole and complete, full of love. We are the owners of magical bodies and minds and we have the ability to treat them with respect. When we do, we are rewarded greatly. In essence, we all want to connect with that sensation of being appreciated, loved, enjoyed. When we start by appreciating, loving and enjoying ourselves we open the door for others to do the same. Being truly present with ourselves can sometimes be difficult, but looking at fears and realizing they are simply attached to past memories or future expectations slides my attention back to the present moment where everything is possible.
DRISANA CAREY is an athlete’s athlete, an embodiment of strength and dynamic energy that inspires us all, but with a grace and warmth that is truly captivating. A veteran instructor, blending elements of Anusara, Power, Ashtanga, Vinyasa Flow and Yin Yoga, Drisana has enjoyed training with yogis in California, Colorado, Hawaii and New York. She is also a yoga instructor and acupuncturist with Sea Salt Retreats. Having recently earned a Master’s Degree in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine from the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, Drisana has deepened her reverence for health and wellness with a career serving others through Eastern medicine. In addition to her acupuncture and yoga career, Drisana is one of the nation’s top sports models, and is one of the main athlete models for Athleta.