Issue 20: Finding the Motivation


The yoga class didn’t start for another twenty minutes, but in her mind, she was right on time. She signed herself in, kicked her shoes in the cubby hole and darted to the back yoga studio where she hoped to be first in line.

She wasn’t.

Standing in front of the doorway was a blonde, beanstalk of a man holding a mat that must have cost two hundred dollars. Recognizing him as someone more advanced in her class, who would probably place his mat up front near the teacher, she let her heart relax a little bit.

“Hey, how’s it going?” he asked, kicking off a seemingly fluid conversation about their day and how much they loved coming to class. He shared how he’d been practicing yoga for six years;  she shared that this was her first month and hadn’t really told many people she was about it.

“How come? Who doesn’t like coming to yoga?” He boyishly laughed, and then suddenly shifted his eyes to a familiar face who had appeared behind her. The two friends man-hugged it out, with excessive back pats and hardy warm greetings. Then, much to her surprise, the pair turned back to her and continued the conversation. Before long, the doors were opened and the three of them walked in still talking about cleaning their yoga mats.

In fact, talking to her new yoga friends felt so good  that she actually forgot to rush to her favorite spot the back of the classroom — where no one could see just how bad she was at nearly every yoga position possible.  But as her new friends dropped mats around her and started to get ready for class, it felt rude to just suddenly walk away.

“Come, sit down,” the blonde man said, pointing to a spot on his right, before folding himself in a perfect man pretzel on his mat to stretch.  The other friend might have been meditating, or in a light coma already. She couldn’t decide. Either way, she looked back at her favorite spot that was now occupied by two other girls, and there really wasn’t any option for her hide anymore.

Placing her mat down, she felt her heart beat quicken a bit. But to keep up with the rest of the front row yogis, she decided to try to mimic their warm ups a bit. When the teacher placed a mat directly in front of her own, she felt the urge to bolt from the class all together. “Good to see you up here,” the teacher said with a smile before walking to set up the iPod to the speaker. Before she could come up with a good excuse to leave and come back another day, the class was already in their first downward dog.

The next hour was the olympics of all yoga classes for her. She sat up straighter, worked harder to stand on one leg, and not cheat with two blocks when she only needed one. She mirrored beanstalk blondie with every move he made, and held every position the teacher adjusted her into (which was happening four times as much sitting in the front of the class). By the time shavasana came at the end, she was completely sweaty, out of breathe and never coming back to yoga again.

“Yo that was such a great class,” she heard blondie say a few moments later. The class was over but she wasn’t ready to open her eyes and stand anytime in the next decade. “Damn, I was never that good a month in. See ya next week?” He asked. She gave a weary thumbs up with her eyes still closed, and felt a very sweaty hand over her own to shake on the deal.

Exactly one year later — to the day — she found herself kicking her shoes into the cubby hole, and darting to the back studio once more. Instead of being twenty minutes early, this time she got there with only  two minutes to spare. It was just enough time to throw her mat down at the front of the class, plug her iPod into the speakers, and snag a brief hug from her good friend Beanstalk Blondie. A few minutes later, after everyone settled down, she  lead her first yoga class with a giant, heartwarming Ohm.


Four Ways To Stay Motivated

The concept of motivation has a bad PR problem. For some reason, motivation is perceived as something you should naturally want to do — like going  to the gym to stay healthy, eating more kale, or pushing harder to get that promotion. But research shows that motivation is something that actually takes a little bit of brain training. (And here we are, spending all this time feeling guilty that we don’t naturally feel motivated to get off the couch — who knew!)

Luckily for us, the brain is super receptive to learning how to keep yourself inspired. And if you train with the  four tips below in mind,  you’ll meet your goals with great speed (and probably have way more fun!)

Just Be Optimistic

No matter how uncomfortable it feels to believe in yourself and your goals, you get much further head with a positive attitude. Think of it like the story above —being  optimistic can help you spot opportunities to advance forward. Negative energy only spots opportunities  to keep you in the back of the classroom.

Be Around Greatness

Being around those who have a talent or gift you want to have is a fast way to stay motivated about your goal. Like the story above, you tend to rise up to their work standards, and move towards your goals a lot quicker. This may require you to make new friends that can help you. Consider checking for local events near you on MeetUp or Eventbrite to help you get started.

Write Out Everything

Keeping a journal will always help you remember just how far you’ve really come. This is particularly useful when anxiety about being unmotivated sets in. When we take the time to write out how you feel, what you want, and a few reasonable ways to get it, we can regain a sense of control over the situation. AND make it easier to stimulate long-lasting motivation.

Treat Yo Self

A dolla makes still me holla, and so does mozzarella sticks, a shopping splurge and a new snake plant to decorate the casa with. Nothing motivates like a little treat at the end of hard work. Planning practical treats along the way can help you find a little more room keep yourself motivated longer.

One Minute Video Worth Watching:


Tony Robbin explains why 80 percent of success is psychological

“If you’ve ever found yourself close to achieving a really important goal, with your business or your body or your relationship… and then you… you screwed it up. You did something unconsciously to screw it up. It’s really, truly because inside your own head, your blueprint is creating your limitation.”

There’s still a sense of emotional spiraling happening in your charts this week. The tango between your ruling planet Mars and Mercury keeps you front and center once again, with extra pressure on your the sixth house of responsibilities and services. With the moon squaring with Mars earlier in the week, whatever conversation you’re in has a real chance of getting a bit dramatic!  Try to keep your emotions in check. Maybe go in with a strategy that not everyone’s emotions last forever, and see if there’s any way to outsmart the issue — rather than constantly beating it into submission. This week, work smarter — not harder.

Song: Operator, Vanessa Carlton

With your ruling planet trine Saturn this week, and the Nodes squeezing her on both sides, you’re going to feel Venus tug at your heart strings a bit and ask you to take yet another look at your relationships. But this time, instead of wondering if you should stay or you should go, Venus is ready to fall all the way in love — and she wants you to follow those vibes. Go with your heart this week… and let the things that make you happy get the best of your attention.

Song: No One, Alicia Keys

With clarity and communication on your side this week, the motivation to leave your mark on things is strong. However,  you’re also  going to have to find the balance with that ambition and how it works in a larger group setting. It’s okay to make baby moves —but you can’t bowl people over. You’ll meet opposition immediately if you do. Instead, try to have a team player attitude this week, and see how much easier it becomes to move the needle.

Song: Slide, Donna Missal

It’s almost as if your inner psychic comes out strong this week. Something happens when Neptune squares the moon this week — and it could really give you a bit of a confidence boost. Almost as if you’ve always known something about a situation or person, but never gave yourself the space to see you were right. Keep an eye out for the feeling of validation this week, and letting yourself learn the valuable lesson of never second guessing your gut again.

Song: Love Is Blindness, Jack White

While Cancer’s are getting worlds of clarity from Neptune this week, you are suffering from a bit of the opposite. With a lot of fast moving pieces right now, be careful not to get taken advantage of this week. Or lied to. Or heaven forbid you’re thinking of being this crafty, because the karma will not stack in your favor! As a matter of fact, anyone who thinks it’s a good idea to forcefully push their agenda at the expense of others, will hit a bit of a karmic wall that won’t be easy to bounce back from. The best thing to remember this week is that kindness is real, and it moves mountains. Demand kindness as well as give it out in spades.

Song: What Goes Around…Comes Around, Justin Timberlake

I know it often feels like you’ve built up the street cred to say “My way or the highway.” But this week, your usually spot on intuition is going to feel a bit cloudy and emotional thanks to Mars. There’s a great possibility to get frustrated with this influence. But there’s also an amazing chance for you to look at what bugs you the most this week, and understand how you really feel about the situation. Sometimes we learn a lot about ourselves in moments like these — and something (or someone) may be a little bit more important to you right now then you’ve previously let yourself enjoy before.

Song: Into You, Ariana Grande

What are you loving right now? Is there room to love it a little more? According to your ruling planet of Venus this week, there is a bit more you can give. And if there are any walls of protection you have around your heart on the issue, this week you’d be very supported to begin taking those down. Make the investment to follow your bliss this week. There’s a transitional and healing energy around you now, if you’re willing to apply some courage and do the work.

Song: The End of Everything, Jill Andrews

It’s going to be a little bit more of the same this week, as your ruling planets are in some of the most intense aspects of this year. I wish I could just insert that Kris Kardashian meme here that says “You’re doing amazing, sweetie.” Because it’s true. Don’t let emotions send you backwards in all the progress you’ve made this year. Where tensions get high — find a way to be the calm the room needs. They will come to your side soon enough.

Song: Killer Queen, Queen

If there have been some changes you’ve been thinking about making, now might be the perfect moment to give it a shot. You’ve got Venus and Saturn in a sextile position with Jupiter this week, supporting your inner desire to break free, express yourself and be your best self. So if you’ve been thinking of getting a new haircut, or splurging on a new fall wardrobe, the cosmos suggest you get to Yelp’ing and start finding the five star places. You’ll be in luck this week to launch a new version of you.

Song: Loca — Freemason Radio Edit, Shakria ft. Dizzee Rascal

This week, you might find yourself in a bit of a Rocky Balboa moment, where you’re going to need to overcome a challenge that just might damn near kill your heart. The pressure is about to get jacked up to the next level. And if 2017 has taught you anything, it’s that you can handle a mudslinging fight better than the rest of them. Just put your attention back into your work. You’ll find your peace and calm there — and respond back to the stress in a way you can be proud of later on.

Song: Sabatoge, Beastie Boys

With Saturn squaring itself against the Sun, and Uranus’s squaring Jupiter getting you extra jittery, let this week be more about understanding yourself as a whole, and less I-Must-Make-These-Changes-Happen-Right-Now. This week is a get your ducks in a row kinda time (I know —what else is new, right?) But with a planetary influence like this, you gotta find your joy in the simple things. Find time with family and friends who make you smile and understand you. You’ll get a lot more mileage out of this week if you opt to get social over angry.

Song: Heard ‘Em Say, Kanye West

Once again your relationships are front and center this week, and the skies want you to really try to push the boundaries a bit here. And also to take time for yourself. Some people talk a really good game and deciphering the truth might be hard if you don’t secure a bit of alone time to figure out how you really feel. Whatever or whoever this influence is, it’s going to be in your chart for a bit longer, so it’s best you push your sleeves up and deal with this now. Yes, I know you’d rather avoid it but you can’t anymore. It’s time to get your house and loved ones in order.

Song: Diamond Heart, Lady Gaga

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