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Sankalpa - Spiritually Aligning for the New Year
Sankalpa - Spiritually Aligning for the New Year

Many of us get so overwhelmed during the holiday season that we quit our yoga practice altogether only to find ourselves toasting to new year’s goals focused on getting back to a healthier way of living. Trust me, I’m guilty of succumbing to these first-world problems too, but found myself simply wanting more!

While I felt dissatisfied with some recent theming in yoga class, I reflect on how grateful I am to be connected to a spiritual practice like yoga that encourages regular intention-setting. When planning my New Year’s Resolution class theme, I want students to think beyond resolutions like needing to hit the gym and eating more kale.  In fact, the University of Scranton research says that only 8% of people achieve their new year’s goals. The sanskrit term Sankalpa means “divinely inspired intention” and helps us align on a deeper level with our God-given gifts and life mission.  Perhaps we can get away from focusing on our shortcomings or quitting something, and consider a deeper, lasting resolve in 2016.

One of my favorite authors Brene Brown wrote, “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it.  Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”  Creating a Sankalpa statement, helps you root into your authenticity and gives perspective to your day-to-day circumstances. Brown says, “Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day.  It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest.  The choice to let our true selves be seen.”

Consider these questions when setting your divinely-inspired intention this year. What are your gifts?  What drives you? What makes you come alive? Then write a short mission statement that defines your true aim. When your yoga teacher asks you to set an intention for class, go back to your choice to “show up and be real” and align with your deeper Sankalpa.  Cheers to swimming in the deep end in 2016. Cheers to you!

By Kristin Magill Gibowicz

Kristin started practicing yoga after a doctor told her she should expect a second back surgery on her lumbar spine. An outdoor enthusiast and a young mom, she refused to accept the diagnosis. She stepped into CorePower Yoga and committed to practicing to see if she’d see any improvements in her condition. With a consistent practice, yoga healed her by strengthening her core physically, giving her body awareness, and reducing stress in her mind and body. Kristin started teaching yoga in 2003 and knowing that 80% of Americans suffer from back problems, felt moved to learn everything she could about the anatomy, breathing techniques to reduce stress and how to transform other’s lives through teaching yoga. “Power yoga brings this exhilarating, cardiovascular yoga practice to “everyday Joes” like me. My goal as a teacher is to share my passion and improve the quality of people’s lives. In each class I hope to help liberate my students both mentally and physically, and leave them in a better place.”

Click here to download or stream one of Kristin's YogaDownload classes!


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