Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift, that's why they call it present...

Monday, June 28, 2010

MY biggest cheerleader!

With today being my FIRST day teaching @ Planet Workout I am VERY excited...and as the hours count down, a little more nervouse then when I first woke up this morning. Now that I'm teaching Monday evenings @ PW, this means I wont be able to meet Simps for yoga like I have been for the past month. This is bitter sweet because I enjoyed practicing/teaching with her so much. She is very proud and supportive of me and I know we'll have time again in the future to meet up.
She wrote me this today on my FB page and I was touched more than words could express. I love you Simps and Thank you for teaching ME so much. :)

"With two children, life can be quite busy. Yoga with Devon helps me take a breath, and focus on the present. It helps to relax, calm and re-energize me for the rest of my day/week. Having taken Devon's class for only a few weeks, I have noticed, I am stronger, more flexible and more willing to push myself. This is not to say yoga is easy, especially not Devon's classes! Devon will push you to hold a pose till you want to cry...and then ask you to hold it for one breath longer. When you do it though, she is your biggest cheerleader. She will ask you to "shine brighter" and to "melt your heart", and will help you become aware of the way your muscles work together. Devon is an extremely compassionate and knowledgeable individual and will listen to your needs and help you make yoga work for you."
Seemen Muqtadir.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Planet Workout

So I was talking to my friends from yoga and the thought came up to look elsewhere for a teaching position as the positions we wanted just weren’t available that moment. I had put myself out there on Craig’s List, kijiji, websites and emailed/called EVERY yoga studio I could that didn’t take an hr out of my day to get to. This unfortunately took Toronto out of the picture as I think the commute would have just added more stress to the equation.

The thought of sending in my resume to gyms was put into my head more than once. Maybe that was a sign? I just never thought about a gym as i knew a lot of gyms had their own “flows” and I would have had to take THEIR course which really didn’t align with my belief of what yoga is and should be. I did finally give in and sent my resume to the gym I use to belong to, Planet Workout, Mississauga. I knew they had Pilates, spin, kickboxing and from what I was told by a few members they did have a yoga class, but it wasn’t that good. I decided to write them a letter explaining what I could offer them and their members.
I received a call from Frank, the owner and manager of Planet Workout the next day saying he really wanted to meet with me to discuss the possibility of putting together a yoga class. I can’t begin to tell you HOW excited I was to hear from him, AND get the chance to meet with him and talk about MY PASSION. We set the date up for the next Monday.

After my amazing weekend reconnecting with friends, meeting new people, and having a great time celebrating life, I couldn’t wait until Monday...that’s a first! I was excited and knew I had this in the bag! I just had to be myself....I AM YOGA! I have so much to offer, share and want to share that with everyone. I want people to FEEL what I feel EVERYDAY! Love, happiness and enlightenment!

I met with Frank at the gym in his office. We talked for about an hour. He asked what I wanted to do and what I was looking for. My goals for now and for the future, and ultimately what I can offer his gym members that no one else has offered before. I was confident enough, and I know I am worth it so I didn’t really have trouble finding an answer to his questions. It was simple...share my love of yoga with the world. I am walking PROOF of the amazing positive qualities yoga has to offer and I promise if you give me at least an hr just a few’ll fall in love. There is just too much to gain and can help anyone with just about anything. At the end of the day, if you leave my class with just sweat on your least you’ve motivated your body, helped strengthen your heart and increased your blood flow...that’s good enough for now.
Frank is giving me two weeks to build a clientele that will help sustain a steady income. To him it’s not going to be worth it if only a handful of people are coming to my class...I don’t think that way at all as I would be 100% happy with one person coming to my class. I guess I do have to look at this from a business perspective as well though. Frank is currently making me a poster and I have already made my face book page. 58 members so far and growing.

I’m really excited about this as I get my own room, my own area to make my own. He told me I’m allowed to do what I want with it. Posters, flowers, candles. I am overjoyed and a little overwhelmed. I start Monday June 28th at 7pm as well as Tuesday. I would like to increase my hours on the weekends as well. The great thing about this yoga class is that you DON’T have to be a member to take the class; this alone gives people the freedom without the pressure of signing any contracts.
My flows are planned with basic intermediate and advanced poses. There will be something for everyone. I look forward to pushing people to their boundaries and really showing them what their body can do! Smiling faces and laughter when people go into a pose they never thought was possible. Relaxed and enlightened minds bodies and souls after they experience YOGA!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

My dreams are coming TRUE!!/group.php?gid=131766196852958

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


People are often unreasonable, illogical and self centered;
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you've got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;
It was never between you and them anyway.

-this version is credited to Mother Teresa

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

"One small step..."

I’m still meeting every Monday with Simps and continuing with our one on one yoga practice. The last few times we’ve gotten together we’ve done a full 60-75 min flows which leaves us both a sweaty mess! It’s been awesome. I really appreciate how Simps is very open and honest before, during and after our practice. She’s able to tell me where she can or can’t feel things and something where she feels them too much. This is a fantastic teaching strategy for me because I able to stop and think for a moment, without having to worry about the pressure of 20 other students waiting for me to continue.
Simp’s has definitely come a long way. I noticed this for the first time last week when we went from down dog to crescent lunge. When stepping her one leg in to meet her hands at the front for high lunge, she would always stop half way and have to physically lift and bring her leg to the front due to the lack of flexibility. When we tried it again this week, she did it with ease. I had to stop make sure she noticed and acknowledged as it was a very big step for pun intended. I was really proud of her.
This week I wrote down a few poses I wanted to make sure I practice with her as we haven’t done them yet like Half moon, Trikonasana, Warrior 3 and Hero. I appreciate the fact that Simps is so willing that she’ll go right back into the pose if she’s fallen out, and won’t move on until she’s grasped the concept of it, or at least the integration.
Simps and I have both learned a lot about yoga, and about each other. I look forward to next Monday when we work on Handstands/inversions...or at least “getting there” We’re going to be doing a lot of wall work in order to prep. I think she looked excited when I told her.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Broke, but not broken.

My friend Amanda was teaching her first class yesterday in Burlington. I was super excited for her as I had no doubt she would be amazing. I went to assist with her and ultimately be there for moral support. I arrived in Burlington and went to put on my amethyst mala that would not only keep me calm, but hopefully give off the vibrations to Amanda and the rest of the students in the room as well.

As I put the mala around my neck and went to grab the rest of my things I started to hear what sounds like rain the pavement. As I looked down, I noticed my beautiful necklace had broken right at the crystal and the beads were falling to the ground. I just stood disbelief. Can these break!?! Then I couldn’t help but think what this represented....What could THIS mean!?!

I put it all behind me for now as I had to concentrate of being present for Amanda. I didn’t even tell her what had happened to my necklace.
This morning as I got into my car I saw my Mala sitting there in the little bag with all the beads. I guess I really did tuck that away deep and I had totally forgotten about it. There was a lot of excitement yesterday with a lot of my very close friends/roomies doing their first classes.
After I emailed Diana to tell her the bad news and if there was any way she could fix it; I went onto Google and for fun, typed in “broken mala” to my surprise...It DOES have a meaning.

I found a few different meanings/stories:

“When your mala breaks, that means you've learned something. You've made a breakthrough.”

“Not a bad omen, at all. Usually, it's a GOOD omen. Often means that some karma has been released. What KIND of karma is determined by where it broke (between what beads?)”

“The cording or wire used to string the Mala will eventually break with use over time. Even though this is a natural process, one can also see this as a positive expression of the law of cause and effect, creating good karma. The more you use the Mala to pray and recite mantra the sooner it wears out. However, this is not to suggest one shouldn't treat it well. When it eventually breaks, this is a constant reminder of the Lord Buddha's principal teaching on summary, "all things are subject to dissolution, decay and change." In addition, the breakage of a mala can also serve to protect you in times of potential danger. Malas have been known to "take the hit" on your behalf so you are protected.”

I’ve asked Diana to please see if she’s able to restring it as I was able to collect most of the beads that fell off.

I take this as a great omen. One consisting of change, development and resolution. This past week has been a major rollercoaster for me in regards to my feelings and emotions. I’ve had more than one breakdown. I’ve moved out of my house for a second time and I’ve completed my Yoga teacher training course. Among other changes in my life that I’ve felt at the time were awful and discouraging, I now look at them as a release and movement forward. This is a new beginning for me, a new life, and a new chance!


On a mala, or set of mantra counting beads, there are normally 108 beads, or some fraction of that number (54, 27, 18, and 9)

The question often occurs: Why are there 108 beads on a mala?

Below are some of the many reasons that have been given for having 108 beads on a mala, as well as a few other points of curiosity. None of these reasons are being promoted here as more or less true than the others. However, you may notice that 108 is a relative road map of reality in general, and the human in particular.
Apart from of the meaning of 108, it is important that if a mala is used to count mantras and the mantra be remembered with sincerity, devotion, feeling, and full attention.

9 times 12: Both of these numbers have been said to have spiritual significance in many traditions. 9 times 12 is 108. Also, 1 plus 8 equals 9. That 9 times 12 equals 108.

Powers of 1, 2, and 3 in math: 1 to 1st power=1; 2 to 2nd power=4 (2x2); 3 to 3rd power=27 (3x3x3). 1x4x27=108

Harshad number: 108 is a Harshad number, which is an integer divisible by the sum of its digits (Harshad is from Sanskrit, and means "great joy")

Desires: There are said to be 108 earthly desires in mortals.

Lies: There are said to be 108 lies that humans tell.

Delusions: There are said to be 108 human delusions or forms of ignorance.

Heart Chakra: The chakras are the intersections of energy lines, and there are said to be a total of 108 energy lines converging to form the heart chakra. One of them, sushumna leads to the crown chakra, and is said to be the path to Self-realization.

Sanskrit alphabet: There are 54 letters in the Sanskrit alphabet. Each has masculine and feminine, shiva and shakti. 54 times 2 is 108, 5+4=9

Pranayama: If one is able to be so calm in meditation as to have only 108 breaths in a day, enlightenment will come.

Upanishads: Some say there are 108 Upanishads, texts of the wisdom of the ancient sages.

Sri Yantra: On the Sri Yantra there are marmas where three lines intersect, and there are 54 such intersections. Each intersections has masculine and feminine, shiva and shakti qualities. 54 times 2 equals 108. Thus, there are 108 points that define the Sri Yantra as well as the human body.

Pentagon: The angle formed by two adjacent lines in a pentagon equals 108 degrees.

Marmas: Marmas or marmasthanas are like energy intersections called chakras, except have fewer energy lines converging to form them. There are said to be 108 marmas in the subtle body.

Time: Some say there are 108 feelings, with 36 related to the past, 36 related to the present, and 36 related to the future.

8 extra beads: In doing a practice of counting the number of repetitions of the mala, 100 are counted as completed. The remaining are said to cover errors or omissions. The 8 are also said to be an offering to God and Guru.

Chemistry: Interestingly, there are about 115 elements known on the periodic table of the elements. Most of those, around or higher than the number 100 only exist in the laboratory, and some for only thousandths of a second. The number that naturally exist on Earth is around 100.

Astrology: There are 12 constellations, and 9 arc segments called namshas or chandrakalas. 9 times 12 equals 108. Chandra is moon, and kalas are the divisions within a whole.

River Ganga: The sacred River Ganga spans a longitude of 12 degrees (79 to 91), and a latitude of 9 degrees (22 to 31). 12 times 9 equals 108.

Planets and Houses: In astrology, there are 12 houses and 9 planets. 12 times 9 equals 108.

Goddess names: There are said to be 108 Indian goddess names.

Gopis of Krishna: In the Krishna tradition, there were said to be 108 gopis or maid servants of Krishna.

1, 0, and 8: Some say that 1 stands for God or higher Truth, 0 stands for emptiness or completeness in spiritual practice, and 8 stands for infinity or eternity.

Sun and Earth: The diameter of the Sun is 108 times the diameter of the Earth. The distance from the Sun to the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Sun.

Moon and Earth: The average distance of the Moon from the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Moon.

Silver and the moon: In astrology, the metal silver is said to represent the moon. The atomic weight of silver is 108.

Numerical scale: The 1 of 108, and the 8 of 108, when added together equals 9, which is the number of the numerical scale, i.e. 1, 2, 3 ... 10, etc., where 0 is not a number.

Meditations: Some say there are 108 styles of meditation.

Breath: Tantra estimates the average number of breaths per day at 21,600, of which 10,800 are solar energy, and 10,800 are lunar energy. Multiplying 108 by 100 is 10,800. Multiplying 2 x 10,800 equals 21,600.

Paths to God: Some suggest that there are 108 paths to God.

Smaller divisions: The number 108 is divided, such as in half, third, quarter, or twelfth, so that some malas have 54, 36, 27, or 9 beads.

Hinduism: 108 is said to refer to the number of Hindu deities. Some say that each of the deities has 108 names.

Islam: The number 108 is used in Islam to refer to God.

Jain: In the Jain religion, 108 are the combined virtues of five categories of holy ones, including 12, 8, 36, 25, and 27 virtues respectively.

Sikh: The Sikh tradition has a mala of 108 knots tied in a string of wool, rather than beads.

Buddhism: Some Buddhists carve 108 small Buddhas on a walnut for good luck. Some ring a bell 108 times to celebrate a new year. There are said to be 108 virtues to cultivate and 108 defilements to avoid.

Chinese: The Chinese Buddhists and Taoists use a 108 bead mala, which is called su-chu, and has three dividing beads, so the mala is divided into three parts of 36 each. Chinese astrology says that there are 108 sacred stars.

Stages of the soul: Said that Atman, the human soul or center goes through 108 stages on the journey.

Meru: This is a larger bead, not part of the 108. It is not tied in the sequence of the other beads. It is the quiding bead, the one that marks the beginning and end of the mala.

Dance: There are 108 forms of dance in the Indian traditions.

Praiseworthy souls: There are 108 qualities of praiseworthy souls.

First man in space: The first manned space flight lasted 108 minutes, and was on April 12, 1961 by Yuri Gagarin, a Soviet cosmonaut.

P.S...In numerology I'm #9...and I just happen to be in my 9th year...gave me shivers!

Tiny Devotions

If you remember back to a blog I did about when my friend Amanda and I attended the Tuesday night class and were awarded with meeting Diana, a yoga teacher who introduced us to the world of Chakra’s. Diana was VERY inspiring to me. Not only because of her amazing unique class, but as I became friends with her...and yes I’ll admit it, creeped her facebook, I realized what an amazing woman she was...and SO young. She’s only one year younger than I am...but the amount she has accomplished was astonishing.
Diana has completed an Honors’ degree in English and Cultural Studies and Critical Theory and a post-graduate degree in Law…she has also lived in Australia, and travelled to Bali…oh ya, and an incredible yoga teacher. As we talked (creeped…whatever) more I got to learn about her passion for Mala’s and the crystals that she made with them. For those who haven’t heard of a Mala before…here’s a little behind the scenes story of these stunning necklaces/meditation tools.

It is a tool used to keep your mind on the meditation practice. Malas are generally made from different materials such as tulsi (basil) wood, sandal wood, rudraksh seeds or crystal. Each type of material has certain properties which subtly affect the subconscious mind of the practitioner.

Why use the Mala?

Meditation can be quite a tricky practice because the mind is like a naughty child. By its very nature, the mind tends to wander off during the meditation practice. If ones energy is low at the time of meditation, falling asleep can result. If the energy is too high, fantasy and distraction become the barriers. At such times, the mala provides the much needed anchor.
The mala beads are moved in rhythm with the breath and the mantra, so that both-sleep as well as excessive mental distraction-are prevented by this action upon the beads.

For wearing: A personal mala is a wonderful accessory to meditation, which when used regularly with a personal mantra, absorbs the vibrations of the practice. It becomes like a close friend or a comfortable piece of clothing!

How to Use?

The mala is traditionally held in the right hand and used in two ways -
In one method, the mala is hanging between the thumb and the ring (third) finger. The middle (second) finger is used to rotate the mala by one bead towards oneself with each repetition of the mantra.

In the other method, the mala is hanging on the middle finger, with the thumb used to rotate the mala just as explained - one bead at a time.
Either way, the index finger is never used to touch the mala.
The practice begins at the summit bead (sumeru) and continues around the loop until the summit is reached again. The summit bead is never passed over. So if you plan to do more than 1 round, the mala is turned around to proceed again in the reverse direction. When the beads are passed over the index finger your Karmas are brought to you so unless you want to hasten your karma don't use the index finger
When the beads are passed over the ring finger calmness is attained. When using the mala it is important that you turn around at the Guru Bead and go the other direction. Never cross the Guru Bead.

The guru bead has many positions of importance...when chanting and meditating we use malas to keep count of our recitations. At the point of getting to the guru bead one must stop, and turn around to continue counting in the opposite direction...why? well...when one meets the guru bead he must remember the guru-disciple relationship and strive for a closer bond and union. A guru bead also reflects the awareness that one must have in every aspect of life, a moment to reflect on the importance of your chanting, a time to reflect on your intentions and motive for sitting in meditation. A reverence of the approach and return to counting.

Diana told me about her mala beads and website called Tiny Devotions. Her mala’s were beautifully made with specific crystals. Clients could pick their beads/crystals depending on what they wanted the mala for or what they themselves needed.
I knew right away I wanted one, and I wanted it to be made with Amethyst. I chose amethyst especially for its concentration qualities during meditation. This was obviously something I had been working towards and knew this would only improve my connection. I asked Diana if she could make me one and within a few days it was finished. It was made with the beautiful rudraksha seeds from the rudraksha trees. They are sacred seeds only grown in a few remote locations in the world. They are supposed to have a lot of healing and spiritual qualities. My crystal was a stunning big piece of amethyst. I also had a few beads of amethyst and a few pearls as well. I remember wearing it the night I got it during yoga and felt absolutely full of light throughout my practice. So many people commented on how gorgeous it was and where they could get one too.

Amethyst: Amethyst crystals brings energies of peace, balance, courage, tranquility, and inner strength. Amethyst stones can also have a calming effect. Amethyst is also here to teach us the lesson of humility, as it is willing to show the mind how to surrender at the altar of the self. Only by letting go of all that was believed to be real can the ultimate reality be known. It is an excellent stone for meditation or dream work, past life work, and general healing.

I wore it just about every time I practiced, meditated or just wanted to feel the amazing vibrations this mala evoked within me. I did wear this as a piece of jewelry sometimes because it was that beautiful, and the conversations it brought up between the people who saw me wearing it were fun in itself.

A few weeks ago I got to meet up with Diana and discuss a summer internship with Tiny Devotions. I was really excited to meet with her and see what doors this could possibly open up for the both of us. We met up in Oakville and she told me more about herself, her company Tiny Devotions, and he future goals. There was an instant connection between us as we had the same interests. She blew me away with her goals for herself, and her company. She is so inspiring to me and I couldn’t wait to join the team. I knew it was something that could help me network, learn something new and just have fun with MORE amazing friends. With Diana being so well organized and positive, I had no reason to doubt her or her intentions. I look forward to working more with Diana and Tiny Devotions helping her reach her business goals as I know she can help me reach my personal goals as well.

For more information about Tiny Devotions and Diana, PLEASE visit her amazing website. I have no uncertainty that you’ll find it just as beautiful as I did and feel the instant rapport we had between us. These make beautiful gifts for friends and or family. They hold a lot of special sentiment, especially if you get a crystal that will assist in the person’s life/goals/ aspirations.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

New Chapter...

Thursday June 3, 2010...nothing! UHG...where did the time go? I already miss the fact that I won’t have to rush home, change into my semi clean yoga clothes and speed to Burlington. Although teacher training is complete...our gathering isn’t. A bunch of us are getting together tonight at the “LSD Yoga Palace”
“The LSD Yoga Palace”

Sounds bad if I don’t explain myself. “Lindsey, Shannon & Devon” Yoga Palace.

I moved into my new place last Saturday. My Dad, my brother Chris and my amazing friend Amanda helped me move in. I had finally finished packing the night before. I total of 12 boxes I think, a bed, nightstands, two dressers and my new TV. We started early, after Chris and I finished our Tim’s of course. It was such a beautiful day too. Thank god it wasn’t raining. I love how Amanda showed up in yoga clothes...ready to work! We started to bring everything downstairs, and Amanda and I even did one of my dressers. “Who said yoga doesn’t make you strong!”
We only made two trips from my parent’s home to my home. It was much easier saying bye to my Mom on the front lawn then the airport balling my eyes out. At least we didn’t make a scene this time.
My Dad and Chris got started on putting together my new bed, while Amanda and I unpacked my toiletries into my new bathroom. We listened to music, while Chris and my Dad discussed the finale of LOST. I gave my two cents where I could until they changed the topic to golf.
We finished around 1pm. I thanked Amanda SO much for ALL her help and she did WAY more than what was asked (AMAZING friend!) I went back to my parent’s house to eat lunch. I also went grocery shopping in their fridge.
I drove back to my new place and started unpacking. I HAD to. I hate living out of boxes and knew I needed to be settled and comfortable. Lindsey came home and was completely startled that was I ALL MOVED IN AND SETTLED! We hung out for a bit, but I was EXHAUSTED and dirty! While she and Jay (her BF) ate dinner I went and showered. That night I went out with Linds, her BF Jay and his friends. HOW much fun was that!?! Despite the fact that I wanted to pass out...I had a blast meeting all these interesting new people. I know I’ll only meet more in the future.
Monday morning was beautiful. I woke up and did my first yoga session on our back deck overlooking the golf course...heaven! I couldn’t help but smile the entire time, and remind myself that LIFE IS GOOD!

I’ve had my moments of uncertainty, and concern...but that’s a “Borycheski” trait I’m stuck with. Some of the same feelings from Vancouver hit me over the weekend and I do have to admit, I broke down. Whether it was the exhaustion or the first time I stopped and realized what has happened to me over the last 18 months. HOLY SHIT! So much has changed, and my emotions got the best of me. I guess something needed to be released. I continued to think about all the positives rather than the negatives. I live with two of the most amazing woman. Lindsey and Shannon have lived on their own for a while and we’ve all gone through similar things. They’re smart, responsible, but know how to live laugh and love! I feel I will learn a lot through them and this experience.

Tonight we’re having all our teacher training friends over for some food, wine and relaxation...NO studying, but I can’t promise there won’t be any YOGA!

Life is good...changing everyday...I’m up for the challenge and I will prove I’m willing and able!

2 ½ weeks (June 20th) until I teach my class in Burlington...EXCITED!!!