Tag Archives: #yoga

Be Brave…



In my constant quest to minimize all the “stuff” we have hanging around the house, I walked into my home office with my cityscape coffee mug and reusable water bottle in hand. As I plopped down at my writing desk, I looked at my office wall which has my book covers and degrees hanging on it—nice—but also had little affirmations and statements that were supposed to help me on my life journey, but instead, had become little more than clutter.

When I began thinking about the affirmation that resonated most with me, only one came to mind: Be Brave.

Most other affirmations circle back to the idea of bravery—being brave in mind and body as the key to success. All other notes came off my wall, but “Be Brave,” remains.



To publish a book, succeed in a pitch at work, go on an interview for a new job—all of it takes guts. It’s easier to sit home and watch the world pass by. It takes going to that place, the one that gives you chills and sweaty palms, to really succeed. And when you get to that place of success and others decide they want to criticize and judge (think bad reviews or a “no” from your boss), it’s easy to wish you had never started the journey.



But the truth is, it is your journey. And you need to take it. Bravely.


For so long I would get annoyed when people would say, “Push yourself out of your comfort zone.” I still do. I don’t agree with that statement at all. It’s NOT about doing something you don’t want to do, it’s about having the guts to go forward to embrace the life you DO want. Experiences are great. Embrace them. But if you go bungee jumping just because your daredevil friend pushes you, you’re not honoring yourself. You’re being bullied.

But if you want to publish that book, hit “submit.” If you want that raise, ask for a meeting with your boss. If you want to be a singer, start auditioning.

Remember, you’re on the path exactly where you are supposed to be—now be brave and embrace all that life has waiting for you.



Thanks for stopping by!

Happy Reading!


A Room of One’s Own…?


Was Virginia Woolf right? As writers, or anyone creating anything, do we need a room of our own…?

Taking some artistic liberties here regarding interpretation, I began thinking about Virginia Woolf the other day when I rolled out my yoga mat in my living room.

We’re very lucky to live in a nice house in a beautiful neighborhood, with a park just three doors away, walking distance to a quaint downtown with shopping and restaurants. I’m extremely lucky to have a wonderful family, a great husband and two awesome girls, and we like to be together. So when I set up my home office to write, we set up my husband’s desk across from mine, and brought in desks for the girls as well.

We have plenty of room, but also plenty of stuff. And that “stuff” never seems to find its way back to where it belongs…

Which brings me to my yoga mat. As a yoga instructor, I write my classes and run them at home to make sure they work well for my students. On this particular day one of my girls was in the living room with me, building Lego sets that were all over the coffee table and floor. A yoga mat isn’t so large, so I wedged it into a spot, and did my practice.


But when I finished, sweaty and tired with a little Lego person having found his way to my mat, I began to think…do I have a space of my own? Does any mom?

My girls do. They have bedrooms that at any given time may be off-limits to the other. They need personal space. But all you mothers out there know that even your trips to the restroom aren’t private. Inevitably, as soon as you lock that door, someone will call, “Mom!” and someone else will knock. It’s motherhood. That’s just the way it is.

person-woman-apple-hotel.jpgI began to think about my writing time, realizing most of my writing is done huddled in the backseat of my minivan while I wait in carpool lines, or sometimes, late at night, in bed. Would I be more prolific if I had alone time in my office? Probably so, but what pressures come with having a private office to write? What good comes from working in a crowded space?

What do you think?

What about you? Where do you work? Do you have your own space? Share it with kids? Furbabies? Coworkers? Are you a coffee shop creator?

Leave a comment and let us know!

Thanks for stopping by!



Happy New Year

I love New Year…

It may even be my favorite holiday. Why?

It’s a time of possibility.

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I love the excitement of Christmas with my young daughters, I love their birthdays, and even searching for Easter eggs hidden in flower patches that are just beginning to bloom, but New Year has a magic all its own.

New Year belongs to each of us and the potential for the New Year is limitless.

New Year is a more introspective holiday—a time for you to make some decisions for you. Many of us make those decisions as resolutions, i.e.:  “Things I’m going to do better.” The yoga teacher in me always cringes when I hear people judge themselves so harshly; as I said in my blog this time last year, I really believe most of us are doing our best most of the time.

So we set goals. Good, goals can be more positive and specific than resolutions. To me, the best goals are journey-focused, rather than result orientated. Rather than the general resolution of “I’m going to get in shape this year,” goals can set you on a path, “I’m going to try a yoga class.” Even better: “I’m going to open my heart and my mind this year and see what happens…”

Okay, okay, it’s rather yogi of me. But it’s way more positive, right?

But what happens when you’re just…well…unsure what your goals should be?

I have that problem this year. Yes, I can definitely open my heart and mind more, and it’s not that everything is perfect in my life—LOL!—it’s not that I don’t need a heck of a lot of work in a lot of areas, and it’s certainly not that I don’t need self-improvement—forgive the double negatives and insert non-self-judgment here!

What I am is in a place of discovery, and I think you may be, too.

So, for this year, in addition to blogging about romance and things to love here on Nitty Gritty Romance, I’ll be taking a journey as a writer and as a person. For my writer friends, I’ll be trying new approaches and marketing tactics and reporting back on what works and what doesn’t—and why.

2018 is a year of possibility so let’s not confine it to a few things on a list. 2018 is a year of potentiality and discovery and let’s take this journey together! I sincerely hope you’ll join me!

Welcome 2018!


Beating the Blues…

This week on Nitty Gritty Romance, we’re talking about what to do when you’ve had a bad day — and it seems there are nearly as many different coping strategies as there are people.

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But one thing is universal, we all have them. So what can you do to feel better?

If I’m blue or feeling stuck, there’s no doubt I head to yoga class. Yoga can clear your mind and heal your body.

But there are other times…times when you just need to wallow in it.

At the end of a long, not-my-best, flat-out lousy day, I turn to comfort. I chow down on scrambled eggs and drink tea with creamer and LOTS of honey… heck, I buy organic, raw honey at Costco, three bottles at a time just for this reason!

Then I take my Vitamin C packet filled with B vitamins, turn off my computer and turn away from work, pile in bed in comfy pajamas—hopefully with my husband—and watch something to take my mind off it all. (Lovvvveeee Jessica Jones on Netflix!)

Then I go to sleep as soon as possible, and the next morning, I’m better. No, I haven’t fixed anything, but I’ve recharged. And sometimes in our over-stressed, over-scheduled lives that’s what we really need–a moment to reset and recharge.

So, how about you? What do you do to feel better? Curl up with a hot romance? Rock climb? Ice cream? Let us know! Maybe your coping skills can help all of us have a little bit brighter day…

Great yoga pants…

Today on Nitty Gritty Romance, we’re talking about yoga pants to lllloooovvvveeee…

Okay, yes, I spend a lot of time on a yoga mat. A lot. Yoga is as good for your mind as it is your body…but that’s a blog post for another time. What you want to know about are these really great yoga pants.

What they are: High Rise Cut Out Chaturanga™ Tights by Athleta.


(Gorgeous picture, right?)

What’s great about them: They work. I ordered these online and immediately fell in love with the feel — like the smoothest satin or softest cotton.

Fit? Comfortable.

Can they hold up to rigorous exercise?  I took them for a test run a couple of times — first to a regular Vinyasa flow — and I’m happy to say they stayed put. No tugging up at the waist every time I hit Tadasana (they’re high rise). No bunching at the ankles. No adjusting the hips.

Can they survive sweat? Yes. They felt lighter the more I perspired.

Second try: The next time I tested them at an arm balance workshop, and I’m happy to report, my arms didn’t slide off my sweaty legs.

One point: I do have to note that on my tights, the cut-outs are located down the side of the leg and not the back. But I’m hoping the only difference there is aesthetic.

So, are they worth the $89.00 price tag? Yes — especially if you’re like me and want to make these your, “going on a date with the hubby” pants, too. 😉

So try them out, and let me know what you think! Hope this helps you pick a really comfortable pair of yoga pants. Namaste!





This week on Nitty Gritty Romance, we’re talking about something no one loves—Burnout. Burnout stinks. Plain and simple.  We’ve all been there, to that point where we feel nearly incapable of doing one more moment of ______ (fill in the blank).

Today, we’re talking about the burnout we all feel once in awhile, when we’ve pushed ourselves too far, sometimes in what feels like the wrong way.

So, here’s why you don’t have to let burnout rule your world.

  • Burnout is a sign not a condition. If you change your attitude toward burnout, you can change the outcome.

  • Changing your attitude can be easier than you think. Burnout is my mind and body telling me I need to make a change.

  • Make the change. Can’t possibly face another_______…? Then don’t. This is not a get out of jail free card. Fulfill your obligations, and move on to something else. Anything else.

  • Take up a new hobby. Sounds counterproductive? I am so tired/stressed/overworked/overwhelmed I can’t possibly add something new? Do it anyway. See where you can take from the burnout inducing behaviors (too many hours on social media for example), and add that time to something positive—learning to ski, surf, knit, yodel…whatever. Burnout is your cue to reinvent you.

  • Try yoga. Yes, I go on and on about yoga, but I’m telling you, when you come to the mat, you are giving yourself permission to, “just be.” And in those moments of “just being” you can open your eyes to possibilities you never knew existed.

  • Make the change. This is your life. If you’re burnt out, dare to make the changes, even the big ones.

    Dale Carnegie

When all is said and done, consider: burnout can be a good thing. It is your body and mind telling you, you need to make a shift, whether radical or small.

Unexpectedkindness is themost powerful,least costly, andmost underratedagent of humanchangeSo many of my mom friends tell me they are completely burnt out after a long summer with the kids. So many writers label their burnout, “Writer’s Block,” when really they are simply burned out on a genre, a brand, a schedule. They begin to lose the excitement, the joy, the reason for doing it. And that’s when the trouble sets in.

So I hope you can look at your burnout as a (gulp) good sign—a signal you need to make a change for the better. I’m rooting for you!



Yoga for Writers…

This week on Nitty Gritty Romance, we’re talking about something to love—yoga.

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Okay, before you tune out and say, “It’s not for me,” I’m begging you: give it a try.  Yoga can change your life for the better.

Yoga is an ultimate body workout that calms your mind and your raging thoughts. It clears away the excess baggage you’re carrying, because it’s about the breath. So even if you’re a novice, all you need to focus on is your breathing, and you’re sure to get the benefits of class. Plus, yoga studios are non-judgmental environments—so no one is judging or criticizing. Really.

I’m not a yoga instructor, so for more info and particulars on poses, check out yoga blogs like Yoga Journal etc. (I included a link below!)

Saying that, I’ll tell you there are certain poses I believe can help all writers – and non-writers, too!

This week we’ll talk about my favorite:

Pigeon Pose. Yup. It can be tough, but nothing opens your hips and for me, my lower back, like Pigeon Pose. As you hold the pose and breathe, something—wonderful—opens in your lower back. I experience a bundle of energy that feels like a vibrating power. Cool, right?

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Now my yogi friends tell me this is my Sacral Chakra which is responsible for creativity and sexuality, among other things.

Creativity and sexuality—this has to be the chakra for romance writers. 😉

There are variations of Pigeon Pose. I like to forward fold in my One-Legged Pigeon Pose.

Here’s a link to Yoga Journal with more info

So, my writer and non-writer friends, please, please try a yoga class! Try it out—and then come on back and let me know what you think. At the very least you’ll have a new experience to write about—and probably a very open body and mind to focus on your work.

Already a yogi or a yogini? Great! Let us know! Share your favorite poses or stories.

Thanks for stopping by!

Happy Reading! And Posing!


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