So when I spoke, I would know it was truth

My word for 2017 is UNFURL. To me, unfurl means being 100% Krissie. Letting my light shine – bright and strong – no matter the consequences. To let people see me – the real me – all of the time. I have had Words of the Year before, but I have never felt so sure. So grounded. So positive that the word is meant to be my True North.

When I heard about a job that seemed perfect for me, I kept UNFURL in mind. As I edited my resume to fit the specific position. As I wrote my cover letter (in the style of this amazing wisdom from Alex Franzen).  As I interviewed three separate times. I was All Krissie All the Time. I was honest in times that it might not have served me. I was just…free. True. Me. Not hiding, not inflating. Just me.

I was zero percent surprised when I got the job. Zero. There was a part of me that knew from the moment I applied that it was mine. It just felt right. And things fall into place for me. Not always exactly what I want, but enough to take care of me and my responsibilities. And my gut said, "This is it."

I am incredibly excited about this position for a lot of reasons, but money is a big one. For those of you that have followed me for a while, you already know that work and money have been a big struggle for me the last few years. Unhappy, then unemployed, then employed at a much lower pay scale, then unemployed AGAIN, and now employed at a just slightly less lower pay scale. But that all changes. This new position will be back at the same pay scale (a little more, actually) as the position I lost 2 years ago. Everything about this feels right and solid.

And now (well, in 10 days), I am in a position – for the first time in years – where things will just work financially. I won’t have to stir up business on the side to make ends meet. The money I bring in through my soul work of yoga and coaching will be money that we can enjoy – vacations, dinners out, weekends with my FatCamp girls, yoga trainings – not money we need to make the car payment. I won’t have to figure out how to make things work, they just will. I won't have to put the weight of responsibility into the work that I love. I can do it because I love it, and the income will just be gravy. 

And the liberation that comes with that? I don’t even know how to explain it.

Except maybe by saying that I want MORE.

One of the things that I speak about often when I talk my students into Savasana is linking their breath to what they want to experience. Peace. Stillness. Contentment. Love. The inhale feeds the feeling, and then the feeling spreads on the exhale. And I want Lent to be one giant inhale. A clean, pure, peaceful inhale. So that over the rest of the year, I can continue to unfurl while carrying this peace and calm.

I have decided to give up social media for Lent. (GASP!) All of it. Facebook. FB Messenger. Instagram. Snapchat. Twitter. Everything. They will all be removed from my phone Tuesday evening. I am so excited (and a little terrified) to take this opportunity. But because I am no longer doing social media for a living and I’m not trying to drum up business or launch a program, this seems like the time. I am at a space where I can do this with little consequence. I am nervous, but I know I need this. I need a break from producing content, or feeling like I should be producing content. There is a line in an old Peter Mulvey song that says, “I’ve been so long silent so that when I spoke, I would know it was truth.” And that’s what I’m looking forward to. I’m looking forward to what I have to say, or how I change the ways I say it, at the end of my social media silence.

Also worth noting, I will not be blogging during that time either (not that I’ve been posting so much lately anyway).

So what if you want to contact me?

  • You can email me at krissie.bentley@gmail.com
  • You can see my daily yoga practice uploaded weekly on Vimeo. I don’t consider this content production or social media because these are records I keep for myself. I upload them here every week to free up the space on my phone. I am also making a commitment to not interact in the comments.
  • If you are Lexington Local and want to practice with me, keep up with Granola Culture on Instagram.
  • If you have my cell phone number, feel free to text me! I will probably get lonely without the constant interaction.

So yeah. That’s it. I’m intending to get another post up before Tuesday about my inner guru (KrissieLou Bergquist), but I’m not pressuring myself. Maybe she will be truth I write about when I return.

Have a lovely week. A lovely Lent. And I look forward to having a clear heart when I return. And I really look forward to telling you all about it.

How I will UNFURL

Earlier this week, I told you about my word for this year. And now I want to tell you what I want to do with it.

I’m not talking about things I want to master or goals I want to reach. But I do have a few ways I want to embody UNFURL.

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I want to be unafraid on my mat. There are poses that I stay away from because they scare me. Even though I have memories of just popping into a few of them at Yoga Teacher Training. Because I was with trusted friends. Because I knew I had support. But I could do them then. And now? I am stronger and more flexible and I have a much stronger practice. Again, I’m not looking to master a pose. I’m just looking to be unafraid on my mat.

I want to dream scary professional dreams. I want to think about what could be possible. I want to work really hard without attachment to the outcomes. But I want to be honest about my potential. I want to stop thinking, “I’m not smart enough to do that” or “I am not enough of an authority to do this” or “No one will listen to me.” I just want to DREAM and DO and BE.

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I want to be more honest with my self-promotion. I am always afraid of pushing people away, of people getting tired of me selling things. But I heard Shenee talking the other day about there are two ways to promote – grow a huge list and have small conversion percentage OR build a small and devoted group and have larger conversion percentage. But both will get a similar overall result. So I am just going to write and advertise without fear of pushing people away because the people that I may push away aren’t my people anyway. I want to listen to my voice and project my voice. Because I have a voice. And I like it.

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I want to finally get a tattoo and have a kick-ass topknot. So, yeah. I kinda have two actual resolutions. And there they are. The tattoo I REALLY want is big and ornate and may not be the best place to start. So I have a couple of ideas of small and simple tattoos as a starting point. I have also told myself for years that I can’t have long hair as I get older. I’ve also told myself that there’s no reason to have long hair if all I do is wear it up. Both of these concerns have no merit. So I’m gonna let my hair grow. And I’m not going to feel bad about putting it up or feel like it makes me look like I’m trying not to mature. I’m gonna have a topknot like Liz, friends. Just you wait.

I’m excited to see how UNFOLD shows up for me this year. Especially considering that last year’s word didn’t resonate with me after January.

Did you choose a word for this year? How are you living into it so far?

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Are there pieces of your life that you want to shift? Do you desire self-care and self-affirming rituals? Do you need to feel less pressure to be someone different and just really step into your life? Are you ready to really feel like you and your body are on the same team and on the path to awesomeness and ease?

Let me help.

I am primarily looking to fill lunchtime sessions. Regularly scheduled 30-minute sessions between 11:30am and 1:30pm Eastern Time. We can talk about evening sessions if that's all that fits!

Packages also include email checkins between sessions OR the option to have me just a text message away. 

Please feel free to comment here with any questions. I love taking about what I do and about what I think WE could do.

Packages start at $75/month. Click here for more information (and the form to get started!). 

 

One Word 2017

Ahhh, my word for this year.

It came to me while we driving to the Christmas tree farm. At the time it seemed logical. Necessary. Just… like a fresh breath. Like coming up for air. Like a big giant YES.

But as I sat with it, it got really scary. It felt really big. It felt like a step I wasn’t ready to take.

I completed my Powersheets and my word was all over the place.

But still I hesitated.

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I completed the shortened 2017 Goals with Soul process that Danielle LaPorte put out this year. And, again, my word was at the top of the list.

And still I hesitated.

I toyed with wayfinding (from this amazing podcast that Tina pointed me to). And I tried on coddiwomple. But they just weren’t it.

So here we are. A week into 2017. And I’m ready to tell you.

My word for 2017 is unfurl.

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It comes from a prayer from the Desire Map.

I accept my calling: to show up and shine, unfurled and honest.

As I typed that line just now, my friends, I got tears in my eyes. 

My calling isn’t a certain achievement. It isn’t a number or a pose or a job. My calling is to show up.

To UNFURL.

Let's do this, 2017.

A Little Leaf Meditation

This meditation is one of my favorite meditations. During this little 10-minute invitation, I'll encourage you to go a little deeper into your body and your thoughts. And I'll teach you a way to start to let things go. Our minds are made to think, our bodies are made to have sensations. But, just for this time, I will invite you to notice and release all of these things we notice. And just become still and peaceful.  

You may notice my cat causing tripod earthquakes. And you may notice that I am incredibly awkward when I'm being still and silent. But hopefully you won't notice either because hopefully you'll have your eyes closed! 

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Are there pieces of your life that you want to shift? Do you desire self-care and self-affirming rituals? Do you need to feel less pressure to be someone different and just really step into your life? Are you ready to really feel like you and your body are on the same team and on the path to awesomeness and ease?

Let me help.

I am primarily looking to fill lunchtime sessions. Regularly scheduled 30-minute sessions between 11:30am and 1:30pm Eastern Time. We can talk about evening sessions if that's all that fits!

Packages also include email checkins between sessions OR the option to have me just a text message away.

Please feel free to comment here or email me (krissie.bentley@gmail.com) with any questions. I love taking about what I do and about what I think WE could do.

Packages start at $75/month. More information (and the form to get started!) can be found by clicking the COACHING tab up top.

What are Krissie's yoga classes like?

I taught my first class two years ago this month. (How is that really possible, friends?)

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I love creating sequences and playlists and choosing quotes to share. I love all of the logistics that go into planning a class and also teaching a class.

But I learned a few months ago how I want a class to FEEL.

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When the Election went down, I knew my class the next day would be a charged class. No matter what the outcome. The studio owner and I decided that the class would be free. An Election Hangover Class. And, friends, it was packed.

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Because it was so charged, and because I knew I would probably have supporters of both sides in the room, it was very important to me that I structured a class that was both healing and joyful. That I created a space that was hopeful but still held space for mourning. I created a class that held more space for self-connection. A class with more introspection, more breath, less movement. But left room for curiosity and amusement.

And it was during that class that I realized that is how all of my classes should be. 

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Since that class, I have held to that structure. And this is what you will receive if (WHEN!) you attend an in-person class with me.

Centering and Opening Quote

I start each class with a chance to get quiet and settle in. We spend a few minutes in a comfortable seat getting comfortable with our natural breath. I will invite you to release your day and be present in this moment only. I will introduce the theme of the week's class, give ideas of how you can apply the theme to both your physical practice and your thoughts, and share a quote that resonates with the theme.

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Breathwork

I am so so glad I have integrated this into our classes. We spend a few minutes allowing the theme to swirl around in our awareness while we learn to manipulate and control our breath. Sometimes we count our breath, sometimes we pay attention to the physical act of breathing itself, and sometimes we play with a mantra and linking it to the breath. This is quickly becoming my favorite part of class.

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Asana

This, my friends, is where we move. We'll warm up, usually including lying, seated, and tabletop poses. And then I'll guide you through standing poses using lots of instruction and the use of blocks to help you find your expression of the pose. I say standing poses, but that doesn't always happen. Sometimes we sit and stay in tabletop most of class. Sometimes we spend most of class in some form of a lunge. But I can almost guarantee that each class will have a low lunge, a child's pose, and a standing wide-legged forward fold. Otherwise? It varies. We don't do downward facing dog in each class. We don't do Warrior 2 in each class. We don't even do tree in each class (although we do tree A LOT). I'll settle you down a little (usually with a seated forward fold of some sort and a few stretches on our backs) and then we'll get all the props and settle into our comfortable final relaxation position. 

Guided Meditation and Savasana

Okay, maybe this is my favorite part of class. I'll spend a few minutes helping you relax. You may take an elevator into your belly, you may watch leaves float by on a stream, or you may watch a white light start in your belly and grow and grow and grow. You'll lay in stillness (unless you have to scratch something or sneeze or something) and I'll watch over you. I'll remind you that your breath is all that matters. And you'll rest.

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Closing Quote, Blessing, and Closing Breath

I'll slowly bring you out of your rest. I'll share a quote. And then I'll invite you to come back to a seated position. Together, we will send peace, health, and ease to ourselves, each other, and all others that we know and do not know. I'll lead you in a breath we all take together. And then you get to take your yoga bliss back home. I usually hang around for a bit after class in case you have questions or a story to share. 

If you have been thinking about joining me, I'd love to see you. If you have any questions or lingering fears, please comment here or email me at krissie.bentley@gmail.com. 

You can see my current teaching schedule by clicking the YOGA tab above.