Week of 10/20/2019 Intention for the week: Earth Element. Having been in education for 30 years, and I imagine a lot of businesses are like this in the United States, it always seemed that from the holiday of Halloween there was someone in the great control room in the sky pressing a giant fast forward button which whisked us through Thanksgiving, Christmas, and then New Year's Day. The sugar high from all the candy consumed on and around that frightful evening appeared to fuel the chaos and madness through the rest of the year. Being privileged to having been a mentor to a few new educators, my advice would always be, "Just ride the wave" through this part of the year. Show up, be prepared, do what you can, and take care of yourself. Looking around during the changing of seasons, we see the movement of other animals getting ready to hunker down for the winter, or either fleeing the area entirely. Some humans do that, too! Then there are those of us who are called to continue to function somewhat sanely in the midst of it all. As a yoga instructor, the image of "riding the wave" continues to inspire, but perhaps with a little fine-tuning. Grounding, centering, or tapping into the earth element are practices which can be utilized to remind us to start from the ground up when the world seems to whirl around us. Practicing feeling the support of the earth underneath us, "sighing out" or "offering up" any anxiety or worries, and then moving forward from that rooted feeling are powerful tools to tuck away in our tool belts in any setting. So, why the "ride the wave" metaphor when talking about grounding and the earth? Because even the most skilled surfer can't walk on water. Each paddle boarder or surfer must first ground to the board, sense the energetic movement of the wave, and then find balance within the movement from the feet up. Prepare to stay afloat and balanced by practicing grounding habits such as yoga, meditation, prayer, drinking water, finding silence and stillness, eating well, resting...whatever practices we have which nourish our soul. They might come in "fun-size" chunks this time of year, but do our best to take advantage when we can. We might find that riding that wave just carries us into savoring the true meaning of the holidays.