May you Labor Lovingly
Happy Labor Day! May your day be filled with celebrations and gratitude for the opportunity to share your skills, talents, time and energy in the service of labor.
I talk A LOT about laboring lovingly. I close my classes with this as part of the blessing. The phrase started when I proposed the idea for a LWY prenatal teacher training program. I loved the phrase because it referred to labor and delivery of pregnancy but also the labor of doing our life’s work. Then it became an integral component of the LWY Blessing:
May you breathe deeply, move freely, labor lovingly & live vibrantly.
The yoga term for life’s work is DHARMA. I learned the concept in studying the Bhagavad Gita and the story of Ajuna. The “Gita” is a Hindu Scripture contained within the larger text known as the Mahabhrata which narrates the story between two groups of cousins in the Kurukshetra War. Two massive armies have gathered with an intent to destroy the other in order to take claim of the kingdom. The “Gita” depicts the dialog between Prince Arjuna and his charioteer and friend, Krisha. Arjuna is overwhelmed with a moral dilemma concerning the battle against his own kin. Ready to quit the fight and “renounce his claim to the throne”, Arjuna seeks Krishna’s counsel.
In a nut shell, Krishna encourages Arjuna that it is his duty, his destiny to fight as an act of selfless service. In other words, it was Arjuna’s dharma to be a soldier and to fight in the war.
I’m oh so grateful that my dharma is not that of a soldier as one Arjuna’s. And yet, I do believe we all have a passion or cause worth fighting for. It’s like “they” say, “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” (I’ve seen variations of the quote attributed to Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Alexander Hamilton and Ronald Regan).
What do you stand for?
Although there is not a single word English translation for dharma, essentially we have defined it as purpose in living. The Japanese have a similar word, Ikigai. I call it life’s work.
Life’sWork Yoga was birthed from this understanding of Dharma and clarity regarding my personal life’s work. I felt a call, a responsibility to do the work of teaching and building connection and community using the practices of yoga as the guiding principles.
The first rendition of my brand was Sacred Spaces Yoga. But there was already such a name for a yoga type studio that had recently closed in Montgomery County (just miles down the road), so I let that go. Then I named my practice L.I.F (pronounced “life”) Yoga & More. This acronym proved to be more hassle than benefit, so it did not last long. By the time I was ready to really launch my independent work as a Yoga Therapist and Yoga-based Life Coach, I had literally accidentally started using the name Life’sWork Yoga to describe how I support others in living their best life.
“Life’sWork Yoga/Coaching is an interactive, collaborative experience designed to support living in alignment, cultivating joy and finding passion and purpose. It’s a practice of living intimately with inspiration. Life’sWork Yoga helps you rediscover balance and joy in your life’s work!”
I call it “doing my life’s work”. How can I support you in laboring with love?