cultivating faith and devotion

February 29, 2016 in Blog

Cultivating faith and devotion

by Jill Sockman

By the time you read this, I’ll be far from Raleigh, having just arrived to Varanasi — arguably one of the most chaotic cities I know. Hopefully by now I’m over the jet lag, and presumably I’m inundated and awestruck by the complete overwhelm and sensory overload that is India. This will be my third trip to the subcontinent, and I’m not yet sure if it’s three strikes you’re out or third time’s a charm. Mmmm. Neti Neti says the knowing Self — not this, and not that.

My preparations for this pilgrimage have been extensive — making the arrangements and gathering the things needed for a journey of this kind; trying to complete any and all undone tasks that they not clutter my mind or my desk while I am gone; loosening my grip on expectation and attachment; deepening and steadying my practice.Read the rest

what’s next? on your journey to truly thriving

December 30, 2015 in Blog

What’s Next? on your journey to truly thriving

by Jill Sockman

A couple of times each year, I offer a three-day intensive called What’s Next? It’s an opportunity to take a look at who you are when you’re truly thriving, what’s holding you back from being that person more of the time, and what’s the next step you need to take to be more in alignment with your passion and purpose in life. As we finish out 2015, when better to pause and consider What’s Next? for 2016?

I love this work, and am due for a refresher, so before the clock strikes midnight on 12/31, I’ll be taking a little extra time to get quiet and reflect on a few questions.… Read the rest

integrity and a yamas refresher

October 5, 2015 in Blog

Integrity and a Yamas Refresher

by Jill Sockman

I’ve come to use #specialtimes to describe events of late. By the accounts of many around me, we are in the midst of a time of big transitions, and I don’t just mean the weather. It’s all pushed me to pause to take a look at just what integrity means. So you might want to settle into your seat or scroll down right now, as I have the feeling this is going to take a hot minute.

The word integrity means “adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character” and “the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished.” What does that even mean — moral and ethical principles?… Read the rest

expectations are premeditated resentments

August 3, 2015 in Blog

Expectations are premeditated resentments

by Jill Sockman

I’ve written about this before, I know that I have. Probably more than once. Expectations are premeditated resentments. I don’t recall the woman’s name who first shared that with me, but I clearly remember where I was- it was my very first teacher training, in 1999, in California.- and it was one of my most memorable moments from those weeks immersed in yoga for the first time. I can still see her face and feel the strong resonance of those words with the truth in my soul. That was 16 years ago. I’m apparently a slow learner.… Read the rest

life-affirming choices

July 6, 2015 in Blog

Life-affirming Choices

by Jill Sockman

Choices. We are confronted with them constantly, from the minutiae of day-to-day existence to the overwhelming life and death decisions which become pivotal moments in our lives. It’s a privilege to have so much freedom — so many choices. What time to wake up, how to spend the morning hours before work begins, what to eat, how/if to exercise the body, brain, spirit. Pressing choices about health — our own or a loved one, significant professional changes, relationship decisions and everything in between. Who is doing all this deciding?

As adults, the obvious answer is “I am!” But are you, really?… Read the rest

observe, witness, watch

May 4, 2015 in Blog

Observe, Witness, Watch

by Jill Sockman

Time Out, Part II

For those of you who have been following my latest drama/comedy, you know already about last month’s Time Out From The Universe. I missed a class, spent the better part of a day locked out on the second-story balcony, and worried a few folks (not least Padma) in the process. Well, apparently I had lessons of solitude still to learn. Shocking.

I had the pleasure and privilege of spending last week in Colorado. My teacher lives in the Roaring Fork River valley, and it’s one of the most spectacular, heart-expanding, mind-bending, pranified places I’ve ever been.… Read the rest

Time Out

April 3, 2015 in Blog

Time Out

by Jill Sockman

timeoutEven if, like me, you weren’t put into “Time Out” as a kid, we are all aware of the philosophy behind the discipline: you’re not behaving right, so now you’re going to take a little time by yourself to think about what you’ve done, get clear, and come back with a better attitude.

I have no idea if it works with children, but I can now tell you definitively that it works well for adults. Last Sunday, The Universe put me into a Time Out.

It was early afternoon, and I actually had a couple of hours just to play before heading to the blue for L2.… Read the rest

The thin line between discipline and self-aggression

March 11, 2015 in Blog

The thin line between discipline and self-aggression

by Kathleen Yount

Discipline is an essential component in a yoga practice, and life in general; as much as I enjoy a day of unstructured time, if left to my own undisciplined devices I would quickly devolve into a life of sleep, snacks, and slow walks leading nowhere. That isn’t the life I want to have. (Well, maybe on Sundays….)

So, we can’t do this thing without discipline. But there is an important quality we need to apply alongside our discipline, and that is gentleness. I suspect many of us have a hard time discerning the line where discipline becomes self-aggression—and I’d put myself at the top of that heap.… Read the rest

Aiming for balance

March 2, 2015 in Blog

Aiming for balance

by Jill Sockman

I’m writing to you on Sunday afternoon, looking out to another grey and drizzly, icy day. There’s the part of me that loves this weather as an opportunity and excuse to lay low, nest, and generally ponder the State of Things. There’s another side, however, that’s just kind of tired of the wet, cold and grey days of winter. I’ve found that this extended southern hibernation is feeding the indecisive characters who take up residence inside of me from time to time: The Procrastinator, The Rationalizer, and The Malcontent. In this unscheduled time out from the usual grind, I’ve planned a dozen times (at least) to tackle undone projects, clear items from the long term to-do list and give a good solid effort to make this “extra” time productive.… Read the rest

Listen to your soul

February 2, 2015 in Blog

Listen to your soul

by Jill Sockman

I’m not sure who coined the phrase “you teach what you need to learn,” but I know that even while words are spilling out of my mouth, I am often aware the message coming forth applies to me at least as much as it applies to anyone else in the room. So it shouldn’t be a big surprise to me that I’ve been talking a lot lately about how necessary it is to cultivate an awareness — a relationship — with the part inside of us that Knows. It’s a gentle nudge for me to take a closer look: am I practicing what I preach?… Read the rest