Archive

Tag Archives: one word

FOCUS POCUS NOTE! FocusPocus is now one complete post (art, focus, playlists and announcements) all together on Thursdays! So whether you come to the blog for the art, the information, the music or the latest happenings and offerings, you are in the right place. Every Thursday, you’ll get it all. Thank you so much for being here.

An intention is different than a resolution. A resolution is a goal, something you want to be different. An intention is a feeling, a process, an approach. I can apply an intention to anything: my work, my relationships, my health, my social action…and perhaps my goal.

This week, we integrated body and mind by practicing with a one word intention. What is something you want to feel more of during class, during today or even all year? Holding that intention in your awareness allows the possibility of your word infusing everything you do.

For the past many years, I’ve used a One Word to nudge and rudder me through my days and I’ve been amazed at the power of this simple practice. My word for 2020 is CALM and during class this week, I realized that I can be angry and calm at the same time. I can be engaged, moving quickly, happy, laughing…and also calm. That’s something I’d love to feel more of this year.

What about you? What is your word for today, this week or this year? Please share your One Word in the comments to inspire us all!

This piece of art is created from more than 90 One Word intentions set by folks in our community. There is space in it for your word and is designed to be used as a reminder and an inspiration. Please feel free to print it out, write in your word and put it where you will see it regularly. And feel free to share it with anyone who you think would enjoy it! Again, it’s a gift to everybody to share your word in the comments below!

(PS In a lot of ways, setting an intention is a gift to yourself. An intention is a way of setting your course toward more of what you want to feel and be. I love this article about ways to be kind to yourself that my thoughtful Dad sent along. Check it out and let me know what else you might like to give yourself this year. )

Here are our playlists for the week. If you’d like to listen to the music, you can find almost all the songs on Spotify (you can listen for free)! As always, please let me know if you have any questions about any of the music we dance to!

There are THINGS happening, you guys! So before the playlists, here is all the details on what’s coming up!

Nourishing Movement Classes at the Studio at Dancing Water on Thursday mornings at 11am!
Nourishing Movement classes with Susan on Thursdays at 11am ~~ my mix of guided and unguided movement, meditation and creativity! Please go to http://www.susanmcculley.com/shop for the details. Come join us in the trees by the river for grounded, flowing, spacious movement. Second Thursdays are followed by a pot luck lunch! Nourish yourself with movement and bring something nourishing to share! There is space in upcoming classes so please go HERE to sign up!
* The Studio at Dancing Water is at 2370 Old Lynchburg Road ~ detailed directions at http://www.susanmcculley.com and via email when you sign up!

Interview about Octabusy & Other Things on Lisa Jakub’s Embrace Your Weird podcast!
It was my honor and pleasure to have a conversation with Lisa Jakub about the seduction of busyness and ways of navigating it on her fantastic podcast, Embrace Your Weird. Please listen, share, review and spread the word! Go here to check it out!

WHERE TO FIND OCTABUSY!
Support local retailers by buying Octabusy
at New Dominion Bookshop on Charlottesville’s downtown mall (ndbookshop.com, 434-295-2552, staff@ndbookshop.com)
and at The Telegraph Art & Comics https://www.telegraphcomics.com/
and at the beautiful Nourish Louisa shop in downtown Louisa! Go here http://www.nourishlouisa.com/ for more. I’ll be sharing more soon on events at this super-cool spot!
And just this week: both Buddha Cat and Octabusy are now available at the lovely Wine & Country Shop in Ivy! Please check them out here. It’s an amazing store full of wonderful finds, not just super-cool books!
You can also order signed copies of Octabusy (including discounts on multiple copies) now on my website at susanmcculley.com/shop
and get Kindle and paperback editions on Amazon!
(And wherever you buy it, please leave a review there!)

Full Moon Restorative Yoga with Shandoah ~ Moonday, January 13, 430-6pm
Shandoah Goldman returns to The Studio at Dancing Water (2370 Old Lynchburg Road, Charlottesville) to continue the full moon restorative practice! The full moon is a time of completion. The fullness of the cycle lends itself to a practice of non-doing. Join Shandoah for a deeply nourishing practice of restorative yoga. Using props to offer support and comfort, the body is invited to profoundly let go and unwind. Rather than efforting or stretching, this is the practice of releasing and relaxing. We’ll celebrate what is finished and soften into the next cycle. Shandoah is a gifted guide for deep release and is a Shiatsu practitioner offering hands on assists during class. All bodies welcome, no experience in yoga or anything else is needed.
Monday (Moonday!), January 13, 430-6pm at The Studio at Dancing Water, $30 or $25 if registered before January 1. (Mark Your Calendar: Upcoming Full Moon class will be on February 10!)

Scholarships Available for all Experiences at The Studio at Dancing Water
We have delicious experiences coming up at The Studio AND we have scholarships available for them. If finances are stopping you from joining us, please reach out and let me know (PM me or connect at sjmnia@gmail.com).

First Friday Freedance with Kate ~ Feb 7 at 11:25am
Nia Freedance is an opportunity to play and tap into the creative wisdom in our body, emotions, mind and spirit. For a full hour we get to dance together with the intention of stimulating our own unique movement creativity. The next Nia Freedance will be at ACAC Albemarle Square Friday, Feb 7 from 11:25 -12:25.

As always, please let me know if you have questions or how I can help more.
Dance on. Shine on.
Susan sig

Monday, Jan 6, 2019, 1045am ~ One Word 2020

Healing Senses 8:27 Parijat
Mulatica Mia (Cuba Remix) 5:32 The Tao Of Groove
Palais Mascotte 5:47 Patrick Duvoisin
Keep On Searching 5:08 Kraak & Smaak
Dance Floor (Nu Brazilia Remix) 5:28 The Tao Of Groove
Baila Morena 4:10 Zucchero & Maná
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
The Word 2:43 The Beatles
New Beginning 5:32 Tracy Chapman
I May Know The Word 8:09 Natalie Merchant

Tuesday, Jan 7, 2019, 840am ~ One Word 2020?

Healing Senses 8:27 Parijat
Mulatica Mia (Cuba Remix) 5:32 The Tao Of Groove
Palais Mascotte 5:47 Patrick Duvoisin
Keep On Searching 5:08 Kraak & Smaak
Baila Morena 4:10 Zucchero & Maná
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
The Word 2:43 The Beatles
New Beginning 5:32 Tracy Chapman
I May Know The Word 8:09 Natalie Merchant

Thursday, Jan 9, 2020, 11am at the Studio at Dancing Water ~ One Word 2020

Suite for Solo Cello No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007: II. Allemande 4:36 Yo-Yo Ma
Healing Senses 8:27 Parijat
Mulatica Mia (Cuba Remix) 5:32 The Tao Of Groove
Palais Mascotte 5:47 Patrick Duvoisin
Keep On Searching 5:08 Kraak & Smaak
Baila Morena 4:10 Zucchero & Maná
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
The Word 2:43 The Beatles
New Beginning 5:32 Tracy Chapman
I May Know The Word 8:09 Natalie Merchant

FOCUS POCUS NOTE! As you may have noticed, I’ve been rolling the two weekly FocusPocus posts (art and content on Sundays, playlists and announcements on Thursdays) into one complete post. So whether you come to the blog for the art, the information, the music or the latest happenings and offerings, you are in the right place. Every Thursday, you’ll get it all. Thank you so much for being here.

The practice of setting an intention is simple but powerful. It is an act of creating space for something new, something different, some kind of shift. We do it by setting an intention – whether it is a single word for the year or a focus for a conversation – putting it into action with non-identification and compassion. And then when we inevitably wander away from our intention we have the chance to come back and begin again. That’s the magic moment.

So with 100 days left in this year, we are taking some time to reconnect with our intention – for some of us our One Word for 2019 – and begin again. If you didn’t choose a word for the year, now is a perfect time to let one come to you. It’s never too late.

For our physical practice, we focused on creating space and mobility in two places that we tend to crunch and constrict in the body: the waist and neck. When we create space and openness, it’s then that possibility and movement can happen. Just as in the body, so as in the intention.

I’d love to hear about your experiences with reconnecting to or finding your word for the rest of 2019.

Below are our playlists for the week. If you’d like to listen to the music, you can find almost all the songs on Spotify (you can listen for free)! As always, please let me know if you have any questions about any of the music we dance to!

SO MUCH is happening, friends, so before the playlists, here is a listing of happenings!

Nourishing Movement Classes at the Studio at Dancing Water on Thursday mornings at 11am!
Nourishing Movement classes with Susan on Thursdays at 11am ~~ my mix of guided and unguided movement, meditation and creativity! Please go to http://www.susanmcculley.com/shop for the details. Come join us in the trees by the river for grounded, flowing, spacious movement. Second Thursdays are followed by a pot luck lunch! Nourish yourself with movement and bring something nourishing to share! There is space in upcoming classes so please go HERE to sign up!
* The Studio at Dancing Water is at 2370 Old Lynchburg Road ~ detailed directions at http://www.susanmcculley.com and via email when you sign up!

Special Octabusy Celebration at Dancing Water in October ~ 4 Nourishing Movement classes for $32!
In celebration of the October release of my book Octabusy, you can sign up for 4 classes on Thursdays in October at 11am for $8 each (Octa-of course!). We will focus on 4 themes of the book and physical practices to help us embody them including mindfulness practices, stretches and restorative poses.
Oct 3 ~ Focus: One Thing At A Time (Feet)
Oct 10 ~ Focus: Little By Little (Hands & Posture)
Oct 24 ~ Focus: Go with the Flow / Less is More (Spine)
Oct 31 ~ Focus: What do you want to let go of? (Breath)

Restorative Yoga with Octabusy: Letting Go of Doing to Restore Your Most Precious Device ~ Sunday, October 13, 4-6:30pm at The Studio at Dancing Water
What better way to celebrate the release of my book, Octabusy: Letting Go in a Sea of Doing, than an afternoon of deep restorative yoga, a reading and signing of the book, and some refreshment? Join me and my teacher, Shandoah Goldman for a recuperative practice for anyone who needs another coffee, rests only while sleeping, are healing anything, need permission to do nothing, or feel that your energy is running low. You’ll also receive a copy of the book (signed however you’d like ~ and you’ll also be able to buy additional copies of the book at 25% off!).
Shandoah’s guidance will help you recharge your body’s batteries and slow down your nervous system through restorative yoga, shiatsu pressure points, visualizations and breathing techniques. We will use bolsters, blankets and blocks designed to bring your body into postures which access the parasympathetic nervous system and give you the permission for deep rest rather than ‘stretch.’ Prepare to come back to neutral with an energized readiness. Please bring socks, a long sleeve shirt and an extra layer.
I’ll read some from the book and offer tea and refreshment to fill out this truly psychosomatic experience that will leave you restored, recharged and rested. $65 with signed copy of Octabusy. Space is limited, please register here. http://www.susanmcculley.com/shop/restorative-yoga-with-octabusy-letting-go-of-doing-to-restore-your-most-precious-device

Octobusy Launch Celebration at New Dominion Bookshop ~ Saturday, October 19, 7-8pm
I’m thrilled to be celebrating the release of my new book, Octabusy: How to Let Go in a Sea of Doing at the wonderful New Dominion Bookshop on the Charlottesville downtown mall on Saturday evening, October 19 from 7-8pm. I’ll read a little, talk a little, sign a little, snack and do a happy dance! You can get the information here and here and if you can’t be there, you CAN preorder from NDB!

Saturday October 26, 9-12noon – Nourishing the Nervous System with Mindful Movement
NOTE from Susan: I am thrilled, honored, excited to welcome Emily Wright to teach at Dancing Water. She is an extraordinary, approachable, gifted teacher. I can’t wait to do this with her. Will you join me?
The body is a central portal to nervous system regulation. When we are regulated and integrated, we have the capacity to be our most awake, available, creative, curious, flexible selves. Using a blend of guided movement work, journaling, visual art-making, poetry, and mindfulness practices, participants will explore states of autonomic nervous system regulation as a means to establish safe, nourishing connections to ourselves, each other, and the natural world.
About the instructor:
Emily Wright, MFA, PhD, is a movement educator, author, and practitioner. She offers classes and workshops in functional movement, contact improvisation, and intergenerational community dance informed by her extensive background in dance and other somatic disciplines.

Nia resumes in Studio A at acac downtown
Nia is back in Studio A at acac downtown:
Mondays 4:15–5:15pm ~ Rachel
Wednesdays 6-7pm ~ Jeanne
Fridays 9-10:10am ~ Loring
Saturdays 9-10:10am ~ Anne
Sundays 3:30-4:30pm ~ Anne
PLUS
at acac Albemarle Square, Tuesdays 12-1pm Nia Moving to Heal ~ Rachel (starting Sept 3)

The Movement Barn offers the GYROTONIC Method
Note from Susan: I recently had the good fortune to meet, move and have a GYROTONIC session with Casey Turner. I love the circular, functional, mindful approach of this technique. And I loved doing it with a view of the mountains in a field of flowers! Please check out her beautiful offerings.
The Movement Barn is a boutique fitness studio in Charlottesville, VA offering private GYROTONIC® sessions in a picturesque setting. Located in a field of wildflowers, The Movement Barn provides a unique workout experience for people of all ages and levels of ability. The GYROTONIC® Method is designed to increase strength, agility, and range of movement. This low impact system uses flowing exercises with circular and spiral motion to open energy pathways, stimulate the nervous system, and create space in the joints. For more information, visit http://www.themovementbarn.com, email catherine@themovementbarn.com, or follow @themovementbarn on Instagram!

First Friday Freedance with Kate ~ Oct 4 at 11:25am
Nia Freedance is an opportunity to play and tap into the creative wisdom in our body, emotions, mind and spirit. For a full hour we get to dance together with the intention of stimulating our own unique movement creativity. The next Nia Freedance will be at ACAC Albemarle Square Friday, Sep 6 from 11:25 -12:25.

As always, please let me know if you have questions or how I can help more.
Dance on. Shine on.
Susan sig

Monday, Sep 23, 2019, 1045am ~ One Word 2019: 100 Days

Passing Through 5:19 Bob Holroyd
Leaving Babylon 6:42 Bluetech
Takshaka 10:42 Makyo
Shadowman 6:36 Afro Celt Sound System
Denmark 5:07 Chemical Brothers
Gold Dust Woman 5:02 Fleetwood Mac
100 Days, 100 Nights 3:46 Sharon Jones, Dap-Kings
Hanuman Baba (Dub Farm Re-mix) 7:25 Krishna Das
Gravity 4:06 John Mayer
Lavender Hill 4:33 Lex van Someren
10 Questions for the Dalai Lama 3:15 Peter Kater

Tuesday, Sep 24, 2019, 840am ~ One Word 2019: 100 Days

Passing Through 5:19 Bob Holroyd
Leaving Babylon 6:42 Bluetech
Takshaka 10:42 Makyo
Shadowman 6:36 Afro Celt Sound System
Denmark 5:07 Chemical Brothers
Gold Dust Woman 5:02 Fleetwood Mac
100 Days, 100 Nights 3:46 Sharon Jones, Dap-Kings
Gravity 4:06 John Mayer
Lavender Hill 4:33 Lex van Someren
10 Questions for the Dalai Lama 3:15 Peter Kater

Wednesday, Sep 25, 2019, 11am ~ One Word 2019: 100 Days

Out Of Town 5:20 Cantoma
Journeyman – AO 6:41 Bob Holroyd
Back Home 5:19 Fishtank
In This Love Together 5:12 Michael Bernard Beckwith
Drumming Up a Storm 6:01 Bob Holroyd
Crosseyed and Painless 5:29 Angélique Kidjo
Maha Lakshmi 5:19 El Cosmo Group
100 Days, 100 Nights 3:46 Sharon Jones, Dap-Kings
Gravity 4:06 John Mayer
Lavender Hill 4:33 Lex van Someren
Ascension 4:52 Lex van Someren

Thursday, Sep 26, 2019, 11am Nourishing Movement at the Studio at Dancing Water ~ One Word 2019: 100 Days

Out Of Town 5:20 Cantoma
Journeyman – AO 6:41 Bob Holroyd
Back Home 5:19 Fishtank
In This Love Together 5:12 Michael Bernard Beckwith
Drumming Up a Storm 6:01 Bob Holroyd
Crosseyed and Painless 5:29 Angélique Kidjo
Maha Lakshmi 5:19 El Cosmo Group
100 Days, 100 Nights 3:46 Sharon Jones, Dap-Kings
Gravity 4:06 John Mayer
Lavender Hill 4:33 Lex van Someren
Ascension 4:52 Lex van Someren

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NIA?

For more information about Nia and this rich system of training and learning? Everything Nia is at http://www.nianow.com…
If you’re traveling or moving, you can find a teacher or classes wherever you’re going.
Interested in teaching or deepening your practice? Check out the Nia White Belt Training. They are offered all around the world so you can find one near you or where you may want to go!

At the beginning of each year, I pick one word as my intention for the next 12 months. This has been a powerful practice that has guided and inspired all kinds of things over the years and this year is no exception.
2011 – OPEN
2012 – RELEASE
2013 – SPACIOUS
2014 — WORTHY
2015 — FREEDOM
2016 – heARTful
2017 – AWAKE
2018 – HEALING
2019 — CLEAR

There are roughly 100 days left in 2019. Whether you chose a word in January or not, whether you’ve forgotten all about it or have been aware of it all along, this can be a time of reconnection and resetting of intention. I invite you to choose or revisit your word this week. I invite you to set the intention, put it into action with non-identification and compassion.

I usually post on Thursdays, but this week I wanted to give you a chance to dust off (or find) your 2019 word and see where it takes you. Here’s the post I wrote in January about it.


The practice of setting an intention is a way of consciously making a difference in our movement, our lives, and in the world. We make a difference whether we realize it or not. Setting an intention is a way of choosing the difference we want to make. (Check out last week’s post for more on this including a genius quote from Jane Goodall.)

What’s interesting, of course, is that we are human. Even if we set an intention, we won’t be able to stay with it. Not all the time. (Even though we know that it’s impossible, writer Leo Babauta suggests aspiring to that goal in his post Mindfulness All The Time. It’s a good read and I recommend it.) We’ll get distracted, get pulled into habit, go on auto-pilot. We’ll get pulled or pull ourselves away from our intention. That’s just the way it goes…for everybody.

The cool thing is that getting off track is not a bad thing. It’s actually fantastic. The moment that we find ourselves no longer connected to the intention we set is what Sharon Salzberg calls The Magic Moment (read her wonderful blog post about it here.) In her post, she’s talking about following the sensation of the breath in meditation as the intention. She writes,

if something arises — sensations, emotions, memories, plans, whatever it might be — that’s strong enough to take your attention away from the feeling of the breath, or if you’ve fallen asleep, or get lost in some incredible fantasy, the moment you realize you’ve been distracted is the magic moment.

It’s in that magic moment that we have the opportunity to really practice. We have the chance to begin again and to choose our intention again.

Stephanie Bennett Vogt teaches the A Year to Clear course that I’m taking right now (you can check that and other offerings at the Daily Om). She says that when creating a new practice, changing a habit or endeavoring to make any change, it requires four things:

Intent
Action
Non-Identification
Compassion

Her approach is that we need all four in order to create real and lasting change. If we only have Intent and no Action, the thought or desire just stays in our head. If we just have Action and no Intent, the action is unfocused, and arbitrary. If we have intention and action but don’t have non-identification and compassion, we’ll beat ourselves up when we get distracted and we’ll tend to quit.

I see it as a cycle more than a list. I see Intent as being the first step, knowing what we want to happen. Then Action is essential for embodiment and manifestation of what we want to occur. The Non-Identification (or as Buddhists would say, Non-Attachment) is not getting hooked on the outcome. Non-Identification is an allowing for things to unfold as they do without fighting against it. And then Compassion is the recognition that we are human and that we’ll forget and mess up in any number of ways and that’s just part of the process. I see it this way:

The Magic Moment happens with the Non-Identification and the Compassion: it’s when we realize we’ve veered from our intent in some way and that it’s time to return to it and make another action.

This mindful practice that we do together is impossible. No one can do it. And that is the whole point. It’s not about being perfect or never messing up. It’s about realizing we’ve lost our intention and then gently, kindly, beginning again.

In this season, it can be easy to get caught up in the things, the activities, the expectations. I know I get focused on what am I going to give, cook, do? Who will we see, what are the plans, what will I wear and do I have everything? But the truth is, this season — and this life — is about our ability to show up. It’s about our presence.

Take some time every day, especially in this week, to drop into the sensations of your body, to notice with your full attention whatever is happening. Make the choice — especially when things feel familiar and are full of memory — to really smell the spices, to taste the cookie, to hear the laughter, to see the faces, to hold the hands. Make the courageous choice to really BE with the people you are with — including yourself.

Presence is the real gift.


ONE WORD 2018 & 2019

As the year comes to its end, it’s a great time to find One Word for 2019. For the past many years, instead of making a resolution, I’ve been choosing one word to guide me through the year. I often think think think about it for a while and then when I stop and ask myself how I want to FEEL in the coming year, the word finds me.

These are the words I’ve lived with for the past several years:

2011 – OPEN

2012 – RELEASE

2013 – SPACIOUS

2014 — WORTHY

2015 — FREEDOM

2016 – heARTful

2017 – AWAKE

2018 – HEALING

Living with one word for a year is a simple way of creating a year-long focus to guide and inspire choices. Now is a great time to open your attention to the word you might like to be with for 2019. And if you had a word for 2018, now is a great time to reconnect with it.

%d bloggers like this: