Keep it Light

mly319172 copySometimes life gets heavy. The last few months of 2018 were some of the heaviest. They were emotionally, mentally, physically draining, and I was suffocating under the burden of this weight – I snapped under it. As a result, I realized that I don’t want to live like that anymore. That less is more. Less is better. And that’ has been one of my most liberating discoveries of 2019.

I guess you could say this year’s resolution has been to “Keep it light.

It started small. Purging my closet, gifting books I’d read and furniture I wan’t feeling anymore. Buh-bye clutter!

Lightening my workload came next. I started saying, “Nope.” Nope to subbing opportunities and private clients. I cancelled two retreats, all my kids yoga camps, the majority of summer dance. Turns out, downtime is awesome.

I chilled with the long-winded Instagram posts. I keep them (mostly) short and sweet because I don’t have the mental capacity to read through 7 paragraphs of text on a visual platform. I figured you guys might not either.  I’m drawn to a short, witty caption, and I’ll follow along to your blog if you have one. But on IG? It’s too much. I’m there for the pictures. *According to statistics, the majority of your followers are too, so others like me who use IG as a marketing tool – KEEP THIS IN MIND. 

I’ve laid off self-help and work-related books, and have turned to fiction – also more movies. Nothing too dark, but the kind you get lost in and usually has a happy ending.

I stopped over-analyzing my own emotions and behavior patterns. I’m self-aware, but I don’t need to spend my entire life in deep introspection. Always trying to be more this/that is exhausting. I’ve truly enjoyed simply living and being.

More playtime! I invested the extra hours in reconnecting and cultivating new friendships. I bought a bike, took those weekend trips, and have gone on all those coffee/lunch dates I’ve been talking about over the past year.

“Not your healer, not your teacher,” became my dating mantra. It’s evolved into the mantra for all of my relationships. I am a healer and teacher, but at work where I’m getting paid for it. It’s an even energy exchange. As a result, I’m better at creating boundaries. I’m learning to be supportive without getting involved or invested. I’ve learned to walk away from some situations completely. And I RUN at the first sign of co-dependency.

It’s nice to live lightly. I’m still looking for new ways everyday.


Screen Time

My friend, Charlie, has been doing this thing where he deletes Facebook and Instagram first thing Monday morning, and then reinstalls it after work on Friday. He has been more productive at work and home, and makes an effort to connect with friends individually instead of through social media. After two weeks,  his iPhone usage was down 10 hours per week. Ten hours. Can you imagine all the things you could do with an extra ten hours added to your week?

It made me realize that I spend too much time on my phone. At least, I spend more time than I’d like on my phone.

I got to a point last year where I loathed the phone. It drives me nuts to be reachable at all times, because I’m one of those people who feels obligated to respond as soon as I receive a message (I generally move on and forget otherwise). Social media felt like work. Because it is work for a lot of us. But it got to the point where it wasn’t fun work anymore.

Over the years I’ve experimented with month-long social media detoxes. Like Charlie, I found that I was way more productive and more present in my daily life, but when social media is a huge way of how you connect with students and clients, taking long periods away isn’t always an option.

I’ve never had notifications set on my phone. The only banners I get are for texts and phone calls. In January, I began using my sunrise simulating alarm clock and leaving my phone on a charger in the other room at bedtime.

I still spend too much time on my phone.

Don’t get me wrong. There are a lot of things I love about technology and the way it brings us together. It’s amazing to be able to connect with friends and loved ones with a tap on a screen. I love being able to connect with other dancers, yogis, artists, writers, teachers, and inspiring humans across the globe. Funny memes, puppies, babies, smiling selfies, recipes, and thoughtful words keep me going on so many rainy days.

So I guess it’s a matter of setting boundaries. Which I suck at. But I know that I want to spend more of my time away from the screen, and more of it undistracted and actively participating in my environment.

Since I use my phone for music to teach, it gets a bit tricky. I can’t airplane mode to block out texts or use “screen time” since Spotify is considered entertainment. So I’m having to explore more creative solutions. One is turning on “read receipts” in hopes that I won’t open messages until I have the time to respond (the “unread” will let people know I’m not ignoring them). Another is exploring social media blocking apps that will allow me to pick and choose which apps (including Spoitify) are allowed during the times I’d like to limit phone usage.

Have any tips or tricks that have helped you minimize your phone time? I’d love to hear about it!

Peace Within the Chaos

“Peace does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.”

My personal approach to life has radically changed out of necessity for survival, and I’m just now realizing its effect. You might have noticed it on Instagram (less of this, more of this), in my teaching style, or the subjects that light me up with excitement. The energy and enthusiasm is still there, but it’s different. More focused, more intentional, more grounded, and a helluva lot less conventional.

When my teaching commitments almost tripled in August, I cried daily on the way to school for two months before relinquishing as many classes at the studios as I could. It was hard to let go, but I knew it was was crucial for my own wellbeing.

It wasn’t enough.

I was still exhausted. I was still frustrated. I was angry, flustered, and flailing about trying desperately to stay afloat in the whirlpool known as: LIFE OF MEGAN. There was no remedy in the foreseeable future. So I gave up. I stopped fighting the current. 

As my body no longer had the energy for a strenuous physical yoga practice, my focus turned from asana to meditation. Each morning before work I pulled out a mala, sat on the floor in front of my coffee table altar (I’ve since upgraded to a bookshelf), swooshed around a stick of palo santo whilst evading Mr. Darcy, and silently chanted a mantra 108 times. Within a week my mood improved. My stress decreased. Somehow I began to settle into a rhythm.

I researched Ayurveda more thoroughly, and discovered I was naturally drawn to warm, heavy, vata-pacifying foods. As I incorporated more Ayurvedic practices into my routine, the more balance I found in my physical and emotional body. I decided to enroll in a 150-hour Ayurvedic Wellness Counseling training.

Meanwhile, silent chants became audible, mantras grew longer, and I threw in singing bowls, crystals, oracle cards, and revisited my archetypes. I studied ancient texts, philosophies, the subtle and gross energy bodies, chakras, etc. – things I’d thought were mildly fascinating, but had never really taken an active interest in. Last month I opted to take a vow of silence at an ashram in East Texas instead of my annual spring San Francisco trip.

These things? They are changing me.

As I was cautiously wading into this unfamiliar world of mysticism and spirituality, a student brought back a Ganesh statue from India for my alter. Ganesha is the remover of obstacles. My teacher once told me that he would also place obstacles in your path if there was a lesson to be learned.

Maybe this entire hurricane of an experience has been pushing me toward the place I’m supposed to be: Finding harmony and balance through fresh approaches to healing old wounds, exploring more pragmatic ways to confront challenges, sharing this newfound knowledge with others. I feel more connected to myself, others, and the universe as a whole than ever before.

Everyday is a deep, rolling sea of controlled chaos. Waves of motion – from place to place, class to class, student to student accompanied by storms of music, voices, emotions, bodies – threaten to drown me in their need for undivided attention.

I am learning to find peace within the chaos.

They say you have to sink or swim, but I think I’ll float for awhile instead. See where it takes me. And soak up all the lessons along the way.


Social Media Detox 2.0

Last April I stepped away from social media to help prioritize and refocus on the important things. It was a wonderful experience. This year, I’m repeating the detox with a new goal in mind:

I’m working
on myself
for myself
by myself. 

The deeper I dig, the more I uncover. There is much fear to be met with. I’m taking this month to excavate those buried skeletons.

Or at least begin to.

I’ll be updating my progress here. (And posting photos of Mr. Darcy.)


Function vs. Fun

I have done next to nothing to prepare myself for the upcoming week, and I feel fucking great.

You see, Friday I got tired of my own bullshit (again). I have been giving, giving, giving almost every ounce of myself for the past six months that I haven’t had much leftover at the end of the day.

I read this article a few months ago about what self care really means, and caught myself nodding along thinking “Hell, yes!” because it justified my seclusion.

Since August, I’ve been exhausted most of the time. My place always seems cluttered and I feel scattered. I have minimal patience with students, I’m overly sensitive and overreactive in my personal relationships (Shout out to R for being a champ the past month!), and ultimately spend all of my free time hermiting away trying to catch up on sleep, laundry, meal prep, and getting my shit together for the next task. All of my trips/visits since August have left me drained instead of invigorated, and Friday I remembered that: This isn’t the way I want to live my life. 

So I’m sitting here wondering… is all this stuff self care, or just necessary for survival?

It’s time to start refilling my own cup.

Friday I made the decision to reclaim my life. I made a list of what I’ve been missing:

Yoga classes
Social life
Life’s little luxuries

These are the intentions I’m going to focus on at the next New Moon (this Saturday). Practicing self care through making more time for the things that bring my soul joy. Yes, being a grown ass adult and doing all the things in that article are necessary and constitute self care.

But I want to have my salt baths and to eat my chocolate cake too.

So I’m doing that.

This weekend I did laundry, dishes, and in true bachelorette-style bought two vegan pizzas, coffee, wine, and tulips from Whole Foods. I’ve gone on about eight long, luxurious walks with puppy, bought way too much shit that I don’t need (but am super excited about) from Spiritual Gangster, took beautiful photos with my new iPhone of rocks, tarot cards, and pretty much anything else that will stay still long enough to use the portrait feature, and I even signed myself and Mr. Darcy up for a silent retreat.

This weekend I didn’t clean my place from top to bottom. I haven’t started mapping out the YACEP workshops that I want to do. I didn’t sit down with the book about Vicarious Traumatization, figure out how I’m going to manage to pay for all of the everything, or bridge the gap with that one friend.

But I did paint my toenails pink.

And I feel more put together than I have in months.

Cheers to finding balance in the self care department. The stuff you need to function vs the stuff you need for fun. Always a work in progress.

PS. Here’s a photo of Mr. Darcy. Obviously, the only I could get of him in portrait mode.




Lessons from the Tarot

Those of you who keep up with me on Instagram may have noticed I’ve been posting daily oracle and tarot cards, followed by their meanings.

While reading Ruby Warrington’s, Material Girl, Mystical World, I read that “rather than a way to predict future events: A reading is a perfect reflection of your subconscious. And as such, each and every card contains a valuable learning to help us navigate whatever stage we’re at in our personal evolution.” 

Those words really struck a chord with me due to my interest and study of archetypal work (read more about archetypes). The more I read about tarot throughout the chapter, the more I was hit with keywords like “shadow,” and I immediately knew this was something I wanted to learn more about. MORE TOOLS FOR INTROSPECTIVE SELF-STUDY AND LIKELY PAINFUL, BUT NECESSARY GROWTH?!? Count me in.

I took the book’s advice about letting a tarot deck choose me, and after some online sleuthing I had my very own Leila + Olive tarot deck on the way. I’d seen them at a shop in Sonoma last August and had almost purchased them without any real knowledge or interest in tarot.

This is clearly a sign they are meant for me, right?

I waited impatiently for an ENTIRE WEEK, and once they arrived I eagerly opened them only to discover… WHAT THE FUCK DOES ANY OF THIS MEAN? It’s all flowers and moons with a few snakes scattered about.

So I ordered WTF is Tarot? followed by this book and the traditional Rider Tarot Deck because I realized I needed some more descriptive images to practice deciphering. I am one of those people who learning by doing, so I began posting on Instagram daily. There are only so many questions you can ask yourself without getting redundant.

I began by drawing cards, and attempting to decipher them on my own and cross-checked with another source. Kind of a pain in the ass, but how else are you going to learn all of the cards?

This week I realized I’m not supposed to memorize all the cards (I don’t have time for that shit, either). The same way all the meanings are understood differently, the readers will be interpret them differently as well. There is no right or wrong.

So today I sat down with the gorgeous deck of suns, moons, stars, and flowers for the first time since I bought them, tossed a pretty Dalmatian stone on top and actually kicked ass in my reading. (Yes, I still cross-checked.)

This intuition stuff is wild.

There’s a lot of self-doubt to overcome. Fear that you’re not doing it right, you aren’t studying enough, the list could go on forever. But I guess the important thing is to get out there and give it a shot.


Intuition vs Instinct


It’s a word, a feeling, I’m on intimate terms with. It pops up pretty frequently, and rules the better part of my decision-making process. Intuition is how I’ve chosen where to live, which jobs to take, which people I can confide in… I suspect it’s where I got the whole “free spirit” label, because it doesn’t always make a whole lot of sense or seem like the wisest course of action. But for the most part, following my intuition has served me well. #notsorry

The thing is, I think we sometimes mistake instinct for intuition. THEY ARE NOT INTERCHANGEABLE. Intuition is an understanding without conscious reasoning, while instinct is an innate or fixed behavior that is a response to certain stimuli.

You’re probably familiar with fight-or-flight instinct. Fight-or-flight is a psychological reaction to a perceived harm or stress. When the potential threat is identified, the animal prepares to either kick some ass, or get the hell out of there.

Instincts can keep you alive.

They can also keep you from living.

You see, a lot of instincts stem from fear of harm. And when we begin to confuse instinct with intuition, we often find ourselves living our lives ruled by fear.

Ever worked a job you hated for far too long?
Continued or revisited toxic relationships you knew weren’t serving you?
Walked away from people you really dug?
Passed up new opportunities that you now regret?

Those aren’t intuitive decisions. Those are fear of being hurt. Instinctive behaviors probably developed as a result of a painful experience. And the only way I see moving away from those patterns is to search and destroy.

So today I’m acknowledging my big fears. Calling that shit out.

The really scary stuff.

Because I’m pretty sure that’s the only way I’ll be able to intercept those instinctive patterns. I may not be able to control the feelings, but I can control how I respond to them.

Because I choose to be ruled by intuition instead of instinct.

Because living is more important.

*Shout out to my intuition for guiding me to this place. YOU ARE THE BEST.

What Are Archetypes?

What are archetypes?
Archetypes are innate universal psychic patterns. They represent distinct personality traits that are present in everyone, but our dominant traits are all different. Archetypes are all neutral – though, there are light and shadow attributes of each archetype.

While archetypal awareness dates back to Plato, who called them Forms, the brilliant psychoanalyst, Carl Jung, is known best for developing this concept.

Why do they matter?
Your personal archetypes are the foundation of who you are as an individual: Your personality, how you experience and react to the world around you, process information, your feelings, needs, beliefs, values, goals, dreams, what motivates and drives you.

Understanding your personality is the first step to growth, healing, and self-discovery. You’ll begin to identify unhealthy patterns when they arise, and understand and utilize your strengths so that you can reach your highest potential.

How do I discover my archetypes?
We have twelve primary archetypal patterns. The four archetypes of survival are dominant in everyone:

The Child: Guardian of Innocence
The Victim: Guardian of Self-Esteem
The Prostitute: Guardian of Faith
The Saboteur: The Guardian of Choice

That leaves eight unidentified archetypes for you to discover through some serious self-examination and reading through a list of archetypes or archetype cards to find the personality patterns you most closely identify with. I find the card method much easier/faster because you can make piles to narrow things down.

Since the archetypes are universal, you will relate to each one on some level. The goal is to narrow it down to the eight archetypes you most closely relate. Discovering your primary archetypes requires self-awareness and assessing yourself objectively. You might be drawn to certain archetypes because you like their connotations or appearance, but you’ve got to be honest.

Remember: Archetypes are neutral. For example: In shadow, the Mediator negotiates with ulterior motives/hidden agendas (personally or professionally), but in the light aspect shares the gift for negotiating fairness and strategy and respects both sides of the argument. I think of this is as realizing your superpowers and then learning how to use them for good vs. evil.

So what’s this wheel thing?
To help you explore the most driving aspects of your personality, Caroline Myss devised a system based on the twelve houses of the zodiac. Each house is associated with a different aspect of life: Ego, live values, spirituality, self-expression, etc. The Archetype Wheel allows you to examine the patterns of your life, and reveals how your experiences and relationships may correlate to opportunities for growth and self-evolution.

How do I cast my Archetype Wheel?
Caroline Myss gives detailed information, outlining the entire process of discovering and working with your archetypes in her book Sacred Contracts: Awakening Your Divine Potential. She also has a plethora of free online resources.

Sound daunting?
I’m happy to help. While I’m by no means any expert, helping others interpret their Archetypal Wheel is growing increasingly important to me. I’ve got to start somewhere, so I’m taking on 5 clients free of charge to begin honing my intuitive skills.

Want to be a Guinea pig?
Sign up for my newsletter and fill out this short questionnaire. If you’re already on my mailing list, just fill out the questionnaire so I know you’re interested!

I’ll choose 5 people at random who will be announced Wednesday, January 3.

Sometimes You Need a Good Punch in the Face

Five years ago today, my best friend traveled to Dallas to ring in the New Year. With crimson lips, sparkles, lashes, and stilettos we celebrated at the wine bar down the street. Classically Taurus, I overindulged and by 1am we were safely home and curled up on the sofa, my gentleman friend softly snoozing beside us.

I don’t remember what we were arguing about, but I remember growing increasingly frustrated with the constant stream of berating and biting remarks. It was probably the bubbles, but I finally interrupted her tirade: “I live here. If you don’t like it, you can go.”

And then she punched me.

In the face.

And then threw a wine glass across the room, shattering it into a million pieces before flying down the stairs screaming, “DON’T FUCKING FOLLOW ME,” grabbing her suitcase, and taking off down the sidewalk.

Chris and I sat for a few moments in utter shock before following her outside, worried she might attempt to drive back to Austin in the middle of the night in her impaired state. She made it to the end of the block before returning and threw her arms around my neck, sobbing over and over again, “Why? Why do you have to be so difficult?” I just held her, stunned.

That moment was a turning point for me.

My immediate thought was: “What did I do to make her so angry that she would hit me?” I realized in that moment what a fucked up thought pattern that was, and that I needed help.

A day or two later, my cousin who had been working with some woman named Caroline Myss came over help cast my archetype wheel. At the time, I had zero idea what an archetype was. Once we finished, I knew that things would never be the same. With my cousin’s help, I got into some pretty intensive therapy and continued my archetypal studies with Myss’ book, Sacred Contracts.

My friendship with the girl never recovered, but she has played an integral part in what has become my most important project to date: Healing through Self-Inquiry.

My healing journey is ongoing. There are bumps, roadblocks, and tons of detours, but I’m beginning to realize that sharing these tools with others is part of my own healing process. I guess sometimes you need a good punch in the face to get you on the right path.

Happy New Year’s Eve, friends! I hope you have some magical breakthroughs this year… without the punching.

Little Rock Residents: Interested in getting started? I’ll be hosting a Sankalpa workshop next Saturday, January 6 from 2-4:30pm at The Floating Lotus. More info here

Social Media Detox: Lessons Learned

Sometimes you have to step away in order to view something more clearly.

I’ve been navigating through another transformational period. When it began, my direction was unclear, but the gravitational pull was there… the need for growth, change, and expansion.

For me, personal growth is very much like tending a garden:

  • It starts small, and requires lots of patience. It doesn’t happen overnight.
  • Next you prep your space by removing obstacles like rocks, weeds, and other things that might get in the way of new roots, and then enriching the soil to make it a safe, nourishing place for seeds to grow.
  • Consider the natural gifts you’re working with (climate, soil type, etc.) when selecting seeds to plant.
  • Once the seeds have been planted, there’s more of that patience stuff.
  • Tending the garden requires attention. You must mind your garden diligently and carefully with love, while making sure not to overwater it.

At the beginning of April I decided to step away from social media to get some weeding done give myself room for growth.


Here are a few of the things I’ve learned:

Leaving social media isn’t that hard. I put up a post letting everyone know my intention (so they didn’t think I was dead), and deleted all the apps from my phone.

The first afternoon, I felt naked. I’d reach for my phone out of habit to scroll through Instagram or Facebook. I realized very quickly how ingrained social media platforms had become in my day-to-day, hour-to-hour, minute-to-minute life. It was pretty humbling to be so dependent on something. By that evening, I felt liberated. 

After a week or so… I noticed I was spending more time doing stuff I like.

I got back to my roots. I reconnected with things that move me, bring me joy, and have shaped me as a person. Art, literature, classical dance and music – there’s so much beauty in this world! I pulled out albums and arias and picked up projects that have been ignored for weeks, months, and years. I spent spent countless hours researching, organizing, and writing about subjects that interest me. Not for work, but because it’s fun and I like it.

Once I made my own interests a priority, I learned…

I create my best work without external influence. I’m more productive, more inspired, and more creative when I turn inwards. I’m not worrying about photos, likes, and comments. I’m not comparing myself to others, looking for external validation, or questioning myself. I feel free. Safe. Grounded. And I’m really proud of the work I’m generating because I know it’s all authentically me.


By reducing noise, I’m more mindful. This manifests in small ways like observing that an occasional magenta bloom will pop up on the light pink rose bush next door, and that a tailless squirrel lives on our block.

I listen more closely to my body, and have discovered that I’m more energized when I take breaks instead of pushing through, and I now go to bed when I’m tired instead of trying to finish up “a few things.”

When people talk, I listen. Like, listen. I take the time to process what is being said instead of thinking about how to respond or what to say next.

Which brings us to…

Closing the space through deeper connections. Social media gives us the luxury of keeping up with friends, family, and students at our own convenience from afar. To find out what’s going on in people’s lives, I can’t cheat. I reach out via text, email, phone calls, FaceTime dates, and spend quality time with students before and after class. I feel connected in a more meaningful way.

And it turns out…

Quality > Quantity. I was concerned that my class numbers might decrease and that my already limited social life might evaporate completely along with my social media usage. As it turns out, a lot of the people are willing to meet me halfway. Friends call, check in, and still want to hang out. Yogis who enjoy my class are willing to make an effort to check the studio’s website or text me about my schedule.

Spending time and working with smaller groups of people who truly want to be there is far more fulfilling than 100 semi-friends and packed classes, and worth more than all the follows, likes, and comments on the internet.

Overall, this has been a wonderful experience. But it’s all about finding…

Balance. I’m nearing the end of my social media detox, and a little wary about returning. I’m looking forward to seeing the thoughts and ideas of others, but I don’t want to relive the pressure to create posts that will appeal to others. I want to protect the purity and integrity of my own.

I’m not exactly sure how I’ll transition back into the realm of social media, or how I’ll cultivate and maintain balance, but I’m grateful for the space and movement I’ve experienced in my time away.

And I think it will be another exercise for learning growth.

Cheers to perpetual movement, and beginning another leg of the journey.

See you guys Monday! xx