Artfully Planting Seeds – Your Ground

by Elsie on May 11, 2013

learn to ground yourself in your surroundings to jump start your life transition. Get out of your rut

I remember taking at least 3 yoga classes a week with some of the most qualified and masterful instructors.

I remember thinking nothing of buying an unlimited yearly class pass at my favorite yoga studio for over 1k.

I remember immersing myself in Yoga Journal plus all the countless yoga books that kept on growing on my bookshelf.

I remember planning my week based on the yoga classes that I wanted to take, including my work schedule.

I had time.

I had space.

In all honesty, for the past few years, I almost never allowed myself to think and remember those times too much.

It was too achy inside.


That’s not my reality anymore. At all.

I used to get caught up in the loss if it and it was too painful, especially the recognition that it would never be like that again.

What did I do about it?

Deny + avoid with a sprinkle of self pity.

That equals nothing.

Recently I asked how is your soil.

I offered a tiny little less than 5 minute check in practice, to take you into your senses and really discover YOU again – NOW.

Funny the resistance that arises to check in, in this way.

It did for me.

I didn’t want to check in. I more preferred to check out (even though I didn’t think that’s what I was doing.)

Checking in was going to mean that I had to take responsibility for the choices I was making + become an active participant in my own practice.

And that felt too hard. The inertia was way too much. There was no way that I could have the practice that I had….

And that was the biggest blockage.

The most important step to getting the practice you want

This is what I heard from most of you:

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”My soil is tired.”

”My soil is weak.”

”My soil is ready.”


I’ve more or less compiled the gist of your responses into those three main categories in a massively over-generalized way. 😉

The next statement/question after checking into yourself was “now what?” or “I don’t know where to start!”

Gotcha. I didn’t either, and I’d been practicing for over 10 years! I felt that everything was soooooo different from before. I felt that my circumstances had shifted to such a degree that I just simply could not do what I did. And that halted any kind of action.

Again…”what I did,” “that I had.”

The number one thing that you need to do to get the practice that you want is to let go of preference and step into the NOW of you.

I guarantee doing that fully, honestly, with integrity, letting go of the ‘have-tos’ and desires is a lot more challenging than any armbalance you’ve ever attempted.

I’m in the NOW of my yoga practice, now what?

The Why aka Intention = The Ground.

I recently wrote “Stepping barefoot into the gooey sap of creative insight within my own heart = purpose = magic.”

Flowery 🙂 but not easy. The words I used- yep, euphemisms. I had to dig down deep to really consciously step into my ground. Literally.

What was my intention?

I was fed up and didn’t want to be where I was anymore, in a lethargic, tamasic, heavy, depressed, caged state that felt like I was looking through a dirty window.

So I took simple, very simple actions.

I stopped doing what I was doing and expecting different results! Ha! As you all know, insanity.

When I chose to shift, I didn’t get all woo woo or spiritual. I simply didn’t want what I was feeling anymore. I was done. I didn’t even have a well formed like-I-was-taught-in-yoga-teacher-trainings type of Intention. It was simply “I don’t want this.”

Here are some of the things that I did to shift and transform, which once again schooled me on the power of the ordinary. Stepping fully into the ordinary and mundane holds more transformative power than any advanced yoga practice that we might aspire to.

In all actually it *is* the most advanced yoga you can practice.

Trust me.


Do one or some of the following as your simple sadhana where you live, preferably your home – where you spend the most time physically.

  • Massage your feet, preferably with sesame oil daily and before you go to bed.
  • Massage your feet in the daytime and make sure you are barefoot for at least 20 minutes a day + engage with your environment aka walk, jump, run around!
  • Practice heel sitting, even if it’s only for a few short seconds 2 or 3x a week.
  • Sit on the floor for at least 20 min.
  • Lie down on the floor for at least 5 min.
  • Pa Tuan Chin for 3 min – very simple crazy grounding Tai-Chi practice
  • Full body abhyanga as much as you can.


The following are great little practices to get you engaged in the NOW. Again, consistency with some of the below are the key.

  • Take a walk for at least 20 min (outside if at all possible.)
  • Play with dirt or sand. This is by far my favorite practice 🙂
  • Get yourself some Vetiver and do some palm inhalation or wear it DAILY. I do, and this is my favorite. (aff link)
  • Touch some plants. Just go touch them. Don’t think about it too much!
  • Close your eyes and listen to your surroundings. Immerse yourself in the listening, simply for it’s own sake for 5 min.
  • Go outside and inhale the scent after the rain (if you’re lucky and it’s rainy 😉 ) or simply be more conscious as you move in the world to smell your surroundings gently and fully without judgment.
  • Lie down on the grass and feel. Bonus: cloud gazing.

a mantra to chant to yourself to recognize that your personal practice how ever insignificant it might feel is just the perfect place that you are meant to be


To accompany you as you engage in any of the practices you choose, however teeny tiny they might feel. To hold dear whenever you feel what you are doing is not enough. Let it remind you of your fullness.

My practice is perfect. I am here fully, powerfully engaging and experiencing exactly what I need.

That’s where you start. Grab the image if you choose!

Once you nurture YOUR Ground and clear your energetic channels (which is what you are doing by doing even just one of the above suggestions,) you can start planning your garden. We’ll do that next!

Ok, it’s your turn!

Execute. Start today, and then come and tell me:

  1. What practice did you do?
  2. How did it make you feel?
  3. What was the biggest question that arose while practicing?

Now go get your hands and feet in some dirt!

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♥ Click to Tweet and Inspire ♥

In yoga rut? Here’s the most important step to getting the yoga practice that you want via @yogeek #yoga #practice

Yes! THIS is the most advanced yoga. Simple and powerful practices via @yogeek

My practice is perfect. I am here fully, powerfully engaging and experiencing exactly what I need -@yogeek #mantra

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Andrew June 15, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Lovely wisdom and great advice Elsie. Whenever I can I get barefoot and walk on the grass. Plus one way I can really be in the now is by tuning into my feelings and as best I can by acknowledge, allow, and accept how I feel. There’s peace in that.


Leigh Ann Kittell July 8, 2014 at 2:02 pm

Dear Elsie,
I am preparing my own yoga class and jumped to your site for some inspiration. Undoubtedly, I found it and this message is exactly what I needed to hear – for me. Thank you so much for your work!
Leigh Ann


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