Thursday, August 16, 2018

Virtual Yoga Problems


It looks like virtual reality yoga has NOT been perfected yet!!!

Although I may feel this way toward the end of an intense yoga class, luckily things haven't gotten quite this bad in the real world...

Not surprisingly, virtual reality yoga is a thing. I personally think that wearing a VR headset while doing asanas would be cumbersome. Also, the point of yoga is to be present, where you are, and be mindful of your body in whatever situation you are practicing.

However, I am very open to the use of technology for any application where it benefits the user in some way. So, maybe this would help some people connect to their practice on a new level.


-Paul Micarelli

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Conscious Living for YOU Logo

I told Loretta that once we had 100 followers on our Facebook page, @ConsciousLivingForYou, I would officially unveil the Conscious Living for You logo that I designed.

We had a few new followers over the weekend, and passed the threshold.... so, here's the logo! We will be using here on the blog and on any designs we create for Conscious Living for You:

The lotus is an ancient symbol for spiritual progress- since the flower rises up through the muck at the bottom of a lake or other body of water, & blooms beautifully at the surface in the light of the sun.

I also incorporated the flame of enlightenment in its center, to represent the fire we hope to ignite in the consciousness of others.

-Paul Micarelli

Saturday, August 4, 2018

August 2018 Yoga Classes

Loretta is the yoga instructor at a local fitness center, The Fit Barn on Delsea. She has grown into a dedicated and motivating teacher, & I try to attend as many classes as possible to support my lovely wife.

Yoga has become an integral part of our lifestyle over the past couple years. Our practice has greatly increased the quality of our lives- giving us more strength, flexibility, energy, muscle tone, and better overall health.

People of all shapes, sizes, ages, and skill levels have been coming out to her classes, and it's wonderful to see people making the effort to live a healthier lifestyle. We have seen a lot of new faces in the classes, and there are many people coming back after feeling the benefit of the all-levels classes she is teaching. Those who attend the classes leave feeling happy & invigorated.

We also just started a monthly newsletter for Conscious Living for You, in which Loretta is sharing wisdom & information about the yogic lifestyle. To sign up for the newsletter, please message us on Facebook and include "Subscribe" in the subject.

I just made the new graphics below for August's classes, showing the schedule & pricing, as well as the promo for this month.







-Paul Micarelli

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Mind is Like a Clear Glass of Water

I started reading "Coming to our Senses" by Jon Kabat-Zinn, a book about mindfulness, meditation, and cultivating a fuller awareness of our experience.

Early in the book, the author writes about his encounters with Zen Master Seung Sahn, and the wisdom he imparted to his students.

I looked him up online, and came across this quote about the nature of mind:


Our mind is like a clear glass of water. 
If you put salt into the water, it becomes salt water; 
sugar, it becomes sugar water; 
shit, it becomes shit water. 
But originally the water is clear. 
No thinking, no mind. 
No mind, no problem.”  

-Zen Master Seung Sahn

The quote speaks for itself, and tells us that the energetic phenomenon we recognize as "mind" is intrinsically empty. We can get a glimpse of this when we focus on our sensory experiences, and let the chatter of our internal dialogue quiet down. There is "nothing" there of solidity, it is simply energy patterns bouncing around in our heads, and we can learn to direct this energy through meditation & simple mindfulness.

Whatever our attention turns to, internally or externally, is what will fill the clarity of the pure essence of the mind. This is why it is so important to practice mindfulness and directing our thoughts and actions toward positive, beneficial states of being if we do not want to be overcome by suffering.

By seeing the mind as a clear vessel, we discover that we can shape our thoughts and experiences to create the life that we wish to lead.

 -Paul Micarelli

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Want to Start Yoga?

Want to start yoga?...

This flyer posted to a telephone pole (by an anonymous, frustrated person) has some advice on how to get started.

It suggests an unconventional approach to "downward dog position":



Yes, cleaning up after yourself and your pets is a form of mindfulness! It is also an act of consideration toward others, who may have to encounter the mess you leave.

-Paul Micarelli

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Mountain Lake Yoga in the Poconos


After our wedding & honeymoon earlier this month, Loretta & I went to the Poconos with my family for our summer vacation.

I took it easy & didn't really work out the few days we were there, but Loretta did yoga and made videos for her classes throughout the week. One day, she decided to go to a cove on the lake (that we call "P&L Cove") to do yoga.

I took the kayak out to meet her and filmed her doing her asanas from the water, & also took some photos. It was a wonderful setting in which to practice, and I wanted to capture her beauty and strength within the amazing lake scenery.



-Paul Micarelli

Monday, July 9, 2018

Honeymoon Yoga


As I mentioned in the last post before we left- last week, I got married to my partner on this blog (& in life!):


After our wedding, we went to Cape May, NJ where we stayed at a bed & breakfast for most of the week. We laid out on the beach during the day, and went out to eat at the different restaurants in the evening. It was a great time for us to be alone and enjoy a mini-vacation.


Although we both like to stay healthy & physically fit, Loretta is definitely more of the workout fanatic than I am. We decided to take it easy on our honeymoon, but we did do a short yoga session one night in the backyard of the place we were staying. Loretta was also practicing some of her poses on the beach. 

It just goes to show that there is always time to practice conscious living, to improve your health & well-being!

 

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Paul & Loretta are Getting Married!

*Update! Here is a link to photos from our wedding last weekend:

*************

This weekend, the creators of Conscious Living for You, Loretta & I (Paul) will be married! We have been planning our wedding for a year, and the day is finally upon us!

Because this blog is one of our first joint ventures, I thought it would be important to post something here.

It's hard to put into words how I feel about this exceptional woman. We are writing our vows, and mine are clocking in at 4-5 min, because it's hard for me to sum up my feelings about her & our relationship. She is my life partner and my best friend. The spiritual, physical, intellectual, and emotional bond we share is something I treasure and do not take for granted for a moment. It sometimes boggles my mind that my ideal woman has appeared in my life. I try to just appreciate it & let her know how glad I am for her.

We were friends for many years, and for most of that time I had a deep attraction to her. Although she didn't share my level of attraction for a long time, eventually in 2014 I asked her to go on a Valentine's date, "as friends". At that time, Loretta was changing her perception of me and this was a turning point where our relationship took a more romantic direction.

We have been engaged since 2016 and after spending almost every day together, sharing countless life experiences, going to premarital therapy, taking part in ventures together, deeply working on emotional and communication issues, and furthering our careers, we have no doubt that we are ready to travel this road together. I know Loretta is truly a soul mate, someone I am connected to in mysterious and inexpiable ways.

We had a private, legal ceremony in NJ where we live a couple days ago on Thursday, June 28. It was just our parents and our officiant with us at Malaga Lake, a small but scenic local lake. The weather was cloudy & rainy, but as the ceremony started, the sun came out and scintillated over the lake.

 Loretta DeStefano & Paul M. Micarelli



Our public ceremony for family & friends, and our reception will be at The Old Mill in Rose Valley, PA this Sunday July 1, 2018. We picked the venue because the grounds are beautiful & we planned to have an outside wedding, with us both being nature lovers. There is also an open but covered wooden pavilion and nice indoor reception hall, and we are going to party hard! The weather is going to be almost 100°, so it is going to be rough for those of us wearing tuxes. At least it's not supposed to rain... but at that heat level, we might welcome a downpour!

Anyway, I'm sure our vision will manifest into a beautiful day, just as our private ceremony did. I consider my time with Loretta to be a blessing, and I try to make every second count. Life is a flash, and all we can do is slow the mind down, be present, and breathe deeply as we take it all in, uploading our experience to the universal field.

I am joyous and proud to announce that I am now happily married to the woman of my dreams!

Since we'll be on honeymoon in Cape May and vacation in the Poconos for the next couple weeks, I may not start posting regularly until mid-August. Please check back until then, while we enjoy some down time.

Here are some photos from our engagement shoot with the excellent & talented Won Yang of Yang Photo Studio. We were at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania and Won spent hours with us, taking some amazing photography capturing our love.

Here is a link to the whole album:








-Paul Micarelli


Tuesday, June 19, 2018

How Yoga Works

Even though we are serious about helping people live healthier, happier lives- that doesn't mean we can't have some fun!

Laughter truly is the best medicine, and having a sense of humor about the craziness of life goes a long way to helping us cope with the challenges we face.

Yoga is a beautifully complex and varied practice, with many aspects to it.

However... maybe it's best to just show this graphic, instead of explaining all the details!


HOW YOGA WORKS
Yoga -> Magic -> Energy

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

June 2018 Yoga Classes

Loretta has been teaching yoga classes at The Fit Barn on Delsea for a few months now. They have been going really well, & I try to attend as many classes as possible to support my lovely fiancée.

We began practicing yoga relatively recently, but it has become an integral part of our lifestyle over the past couple years. Yoga has greatly increased the quality of our lives- giving us more strength, flexibility, energy, muscle tone, and better overall health.

People of all shapes, sizes, ages, and skill levels have been coming out, and it's wonderful to see people making the effort to live a healthier lifestyle. We have seen a lot of new faces in the classes, and there are many people coming back after feeling the benefit of the all-levels classes she is teaching. Those who attend the classes leave feeling happy & invigorated.

I just made the new graphics below for June's classes, showing the schedule & pricing.


Graphics by Paul Micarelli Design
 

-Paul