Takin’ It Easy and Gettin’ Sweaty

It’s the last day of the month…again (how does this keep happening?) and although I’ve really been enjoying my practice of daily intention setting, I’m feeling ready to close this one out and get started on my next endeavor. What’s been cool about this challenge is that it’s felt like a month full of micro-lents; each day presenting a new challenge to put into practice and a means to narrow my focus. It’s been a nice reminder too that every day offers a new opportunity to begin again and to refocus—which is especially helpful on days when you might not be feeling your best. This challenge might officially be over, but I have a feeling that today won’t be the last time I use my little intention journal (I mean, it’s too cute to not use, right?).

So, what’s next on the lent menu? Sweat Once A Day. 

I don’t know how I’ve been keeping this blog for almost 5 years—and more importantly—how I’ve been working for lululemon for 2 years and this one hasn’t come up yet, but I’ve somehow never done any sort of fitness challenge. Say what?! 

Even though I’ll be the first one to tell you that I actually kind of hate sweating (I know, I know), no one’s going to argue that getting your heart rate up is great for you for a whole host of reasons. Since I’ve been slacking on doing any form of exercise that isn’t gentle yoga with an occasional Pure Barre class thrown into the mix, it’s time to get physical.

Here are my guidelines: 

  • I will do some sort of activity/workout that causes me to break a sweat every single day for the month of November.
  • This activity will preferably be at least 30 minutes long, but absolutely no shorter than 15.
  • 2 of my weekly sweats must be at a studio/gym.
  • I must try 1 “new to me” workout each week (because it’s kind of crazy that I’ve never been to a spin class, right?)
  • I sweat per week must be with a friend #sweatdate

The kicker is that last night towards the end of the Sox game—you know, the one where they won the World Series at Fenway Park for the first time since 1918, NBD—I started to get that “Oh crap, I think I’m getting sick” feeling. Perfect, just in time for my month of extreme physical exertion to start. I’m not officially down for the count yet, and I’m doing everything in my power to nip this one in the bud, but I’m a little weary to how this challenge is going to start out. Here’s hoping the orange juice, cayenne pepper and raw garlic concoction that I just chugged staves off this potential sickness.

Tonight’s intention: Take it easy.



Switch Up: Today I Won’t…

At the top of every page in my little intention journal is the sentence, “Starting today, I will…”, which is followed by a blank page for you to fill in your own personal intention. This morning as I was debating heading out for a run (as if it might ever not be a good idea), my intention came to me, but in the form of a won’t instead of a will:

Starting today I won’t…procrastinate.

I won’t take 2 hours to decide if I want to go for that run, I’ll just put on my sneakers and head out the door before I can talk myself out of it. I won’t put off making that annoying phone call for another day, I’ll just dial the number without giving it a second thought. I won’t keep staring at those emails in my inbox that have needed a response for over a week now, I’ll prioritize replying to them. And so on, and so on…

Moral of the story: DO IT NOW, DO IT NOW, DO IT NOW



Today’s Intention: Listen

My yoga teacher posted this quote the other day and it stopped me in my tracks:

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply” -Stephen R. Covey

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t guilty of this. How many times am I not fully present in the conversation because I’m internally formulating my response? How many times have I cut someone off so I could make sure I got in what I had to say? A lot. It’s time to work on becoming a better listener.

So today (and from now on), I will bring this quote to the forefront of my attention and actively listen. 


Is It Truthful? Is It Necessary? Is It Timely? Is It Kind?

I don’t remember where I first saw this little saying, but it stuck with me and I’ve seen it pop up in many places since then. It showed up again yesterday morning so I decided to make it my intention of the day, and when I realized how difficult it actually is to implement, I decided to keep it as today’s intention as well:



Today I Will…Send Grammy a Card

Ok, so remember that time I said I was going to keep recording my daily intentions until October 10th, when I’d then switch gears and jump into an undisclosed 21-day challenge? Scratch that. While the afore mentioned challenge is still something that I’d like to do, a little research proved that the requirements of it were much more strict than I had originally anticipated. Since I’d rather go big or go home, I’ve decided to put it on the back burner until I’m able to commit 100% to it (and no, I’m not going to tell you what it is, you’ll just have to wait and see).

So I hope you guys don’t mind, but my daily intention challenge will be continuing on until the end of this month. I have a few ideas for what to do in November that I’ve been mulling over, but if you have any suggestions for me I’m all ears,

As for today’s daily intention, it’s to send Grammy a card, which is next up on my to-do list…




Today’s Intention: Eat More Kale!

You guys know what today is, right? You’d be right if you said Tuesday, October 2nd, but the answer I’m looking for is…drumroll please…National Kale Day! You read that right, kale has a day—well, almost. The good people at nationalkaleday.org have banded together to form a movement to make the first wednesday in October National Kale Day. From their website:

“We propose that National Kale Day will be the first Wednesday in October and will continue to be an annual celebration of eating, growing, and sharing kale through out America.”

Sounds like a good idea to me, they certainly got my signature on the petition.

So today, on (proposed) National Kale Day, my daily intention is to live up to the bumper sticker that’s on my car and “Eat More Kale”.  Who’s with me?!


Another Week of Good Intentions

Monday’s the best day to set some intentions for the week, eh? In addition to today’s, here’s last week’s batch of daily intentions (in case you missed them on Instagram and Twitter):

9.24.13: Be generous (even with myself).

9.25.13: Learn something new. Side Note: You know that old saying, “You learn something new every day”? One year, I think it was in the 8th or 9th grade, I actually wrote down what I learned every day for the entire year. See? I’ve always been like this. 

9.26.13: Express gratitude.

9:27.13: Go for a run.

9.28.13: Do 1 thing that’s been on my “to-do” list forever—and ok, while I didn’t complete the afore mentioned “thing”, I got about 95% of the way through it so at least there’s that right? Next up after this blog post is taking care of that last 5%.

9.29.13: Give everyone the benefit of the doubt (I work with the general public, sometimes this can be a real challenge).

9.30.13: Fill the day with equal parts productivity and relaxation—it’s my day off after all.

So, I know what you guys are thinking, “Wait Danne, it’s September 30th, what’s on the agenda for next month?”. Not so fast. Since I jumped into this month a little late and ended up only doing a “half-lent”, I’ve decided to extend it into October (and also because October’s lent is going to be a 21-Day challenge—anyone want to guess what it is?). So, you can expect to read about my daily intentions until October 10th, when I’ll switch gears and jump into what’s next on the lent line-up.

Until then, it’s time to move away from productivity and onto relaxation—happy last day of September! Anyone else in denial that summer’s over? This misplaced beach bum certainly is.




Intention Setting, Week 2

As predicted, last week was a bit of a doozy (in a beautiful, yogic sort of way) and my time to do anything besides drive back and forth to Kalamazoo, practice yoga, and eat, was severely limited. A new week is upon us though, and tier one of my training has concluded so I’m back to a somewhat normal schedule for the time being. In fact, I’m in the midst of enjoying a real day off right now, complete with a mani/pedi and some sunbathing on the back porch. Ahhh, that’s more like it…

Here’s what you missed intention-wise while I was busy getting bendy and blissed-out last week:

9.17.13: Oh boy, this day was a real test in vairagya. My normal 1.5 hour commute to teacher training ended up taking a solid 3 hours due to an accident on the highway, making me over an hour late to Sangha. As much as I tried to let it go and keep it from getting the best of me, it really put a damper on my day (I was extra bummed because the traffic made me miss a good chunk of the lecture on twists, my absolute favorite, which was the asana category being covered that day). Daily intention to the rescue though, right? I tried, I did. In fact, I wrote down 7 intentions during my lunch break that I tried desperately to adhere to for the remainder of the day, but I just couldn’t snap out of the funk I was in. So…I made the intention to accept that I was mentally and physically exhausted and that it was ok. Every day isn’t going to be perfect and bad days happen to the best of us. Tomorrow is a new day, always.

9.18.13: Release all expectations. A quote from my yoga teacher Karina: “An expectation is a disappointment that hasn’t happened yet”.

9.19.13: Self doubt. Remember this quote from Gabrielle Bernstein’s  May Cause Miracles talk at Wanderlust Vermont: “What we admire in others is the parts of ourselves that we may not have developed or expressed yet”. YES.

9.20.13: Don’t pass judgement on others, or at least become aware of how often I do.

9.21.13 (my last day of training): Commit to following through with my YTT homework for the next few months: asana, meditation, bandha, and relaxation practice, reading, and a book report (ha!).

9.22.13: That time I forgot to take off the Sunday after my 8-day yoga training and had to work all day. Yep. I was so tired that I couldn’t even conjure up one lousy intention besides just making it through the day. Does that count?

9.23.13: RELAX (yes, I have to tell myself to do this)


p.s. Happy Fall!