Let me put this into perspective: Earth is a tiny blue dot in a galaxy that is part of other universes and multiverses, to infinity... farther than we have ever been able to see with modern technology.
Also: We are but one human being on a planet of 7.53 billion people (give or take).
Also: Our individual cells are but one component of 37.2 trillion other cells that make up the human body.
Sometimes — in the midst of "social distancing" and "sheltering in place" and a handful of new buzzwords that we'll never forget — it's worth pulling back or zooming in for some perspective on what's going on in the world today, and within our own bodies. (And if you want to visualize this, watch this YouTube video.)
These times — just like so many times in history — will be a blip on the radar of our life. Of course, there are going to be businesses that don't survive, others that thrive, families devastated from losses, and others traumatized from experiences all over the world in light of the pandemic. My intention is not to belittle the gravity of today's situation, which inevitably varies from human to human.
For the vast majority of us, this could be a distant memory with varying small degrees of influence on our daily life down the road. Knowing that — and reminding myself of that — is a reminder that although my actions today could make massive waves for my future, I know time is passing just as fast as it ever did, and every day is a gift, just like they always were (and always will be). Every moment is an opportunity, and just because there's a pandemic doesn't mean opportunities cease to exist.
If we're not pulling our hair out because of quarantine this weekend, it's going to be because we're tired of the Virus-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named posts on social media... or we're figuring out how to grocery shop online... or we're so flipping overwhelmed about the fact our entire world flipped upside down in a matter of weeks/days/hours (circle whichever one applies to you).
And when we're pulling our hair out, our loved ones come to the rescue. They grab our shoulders, look us right in the eye, and shout: "GET A GRIP!"
Of course they have good intentions, but the words they choose are interesting. "Get a grip" ... hmm...
So we have a grip on something — for example's sake, let's use a specific brand of coffee creamer. Your favorite coffee creamer. Because it's your favorite, you're holding it tightly, planning your routine around it, expecting it each morning. Figuratively you're "gripping" it tightly enough that it stays in your possession. You've got decent control over it. You can move it, toss it, drop in, hug it. Whether the "thing" is coffee creamer, or five crayons, or a computer mouse because you hate your laptop trackpad, you've got a grip, you've got control, and you're good to go.
Or are you?
Funny how things change in the course of a week, isn’t it?
And by funny I really mean... life-altering, potentially fear-inducing, and funny-not-funny.
Now, more than ever, is the time to practice. As the first yoga sutra says, "Now, yoga begins."
The impact of this pandemic on small business promises to be massive across the country, and Yoga Hive is not exempt from this, not by a long shot. But one thing you can always count on from us (and one thing we’ve learned over the last four and a half years) is that we practice yoga like our life depends on it.
In honor of helping to make “social distancing” the catch phrase of our time, we've spent the last five days crafting a plan to support the sustainability of Yoga Hive, and support this community like never before. At the recommendation of Yoga Alliance, Yoga Hive’s physical locations in Whitefish, Columbia Falls and Kalispell are officially closed, effective immediately, for in-person group yoga classes until it’s safe to reopen.
Plus, we’re completely out of toilet paper! 😜
And... here's the fun part. Yoga Hive Montana is proud to offer a full online schedule of LIVE classes starting TODAY on Zoom Video Conferencing (full "how to" directions and FAQs below!)
Alaskans have a phrase for traveling to the lower 48... it's called “going to the outside.” And I've never truly understood that phrase quite like I did this week.
After spending the better part of the last few weeks off-the-grid in the Brooks Range prepping for our Far North Northern Lights + Yoga retreat, even returning to mainstream Alaska felt like stepping out of a dream into a harsh reality... it’s a world filled with ongoing news stories, scary updates, and a bit (ok, a mega dose) of mass hysteria.
All I could think was: Where the heck is all the toilet paper?!
In all seriousness, with everything going on from election sagas, to virus watch, to the economy, to toilet paper's disappearing act, I find it hard to pull away from the news sites and my daily news podcast. I find it hard to not worry about the future of... everything.
How do we stay up-to-date in the world without constantly diving into fear?
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: It all comes down to the unknown, and our relationship with it. And our ability to ask ourselves realistically: What can I do right now?
In fact, this concept is so important that it's the basis of the FIRST yoga sutra — Yoga is now. This is the most important sutra, as they are to be practiced sequentially for maximum benefit!
So we avoid asking What does my future hold? Or How should I have done the past differently?
A yogi will ask: What is this moment asking of me right now?
Well, we made it through another holiday season — not to mention another DECADE of life on this planet.
High fives, all around!
As I was scrolling yesterday, everyone's "year in review" posts on social media got me thinking... before we close the door on 2019, lets cherry pick a snag from this past year and dig in. Because... why not?
Specifically: What's the one piece of feedback someone gave you in 2019 that really upset you... not because they're a jerk, or because they don't understand you. I'm talking about the feedback that you heard, reacted to harshly, and yet you know deep down... is right. This could have been at a holiday party, or it could have been 8 months ago. Really give it some thought.
You don't have to say it out loud. You don't have to tell anyone else or — gasp — admit it to the person that they were right. (Phew!) Just hold it in your mind, and bear with me...
There's this amazing quote from Martha Graham that I love...
"There is a vitality, a life-force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action and because there is only one you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly to keep the channels open."
So if the entire world is depending on us to shine our unique light, why is it so hard to put ourselves first?
We can't answer that for you, but we're ready to help you answer that question for yourself this January. There are so many influences on our choices, both conscious and unconscious. Some influences include the people you surround yourself with, the marketing you expose yourself to (conscious and unconscious), your intellectual decision making, and your habits.
There is also your intuition... how much do you trust yours?
Yes, today I'm announcing a new year (new decade!) challenge, but at its core, this program is about learning to connect with and trust your intuition. I've spent the last month co-creating this with Yoga Hive Colorado owner, Blaine Wilkes. Yoga Hive Montana's Shelle Kuntz will also be along for the ride, as part of our teaching team!
Here's the deal: We are bombarded by things that confuse our nervous system and block our intuition. Sugar, processed food, alcohol, drugs, and even sneakily addictive food can send chemicals coursing through our body that create reactions and dependencies and separate us from intuition. Social media and advertising do the same thing. Your spiritual evolution, the path that’s unique and special to YOU, depends on you trusting your intuition and taking evolutionary steps. And only way to take evolutionary action is to listen to your intuition. If you choose not to do this, then no one will get your gifts. No one will experience what you have to offer.
The world will not have it.
In this BRAND NEW 40-day Challenge starting in January, you will learn how to meditate, have all your meditation questions answered, and be completely supported until meditation becomes a habit... which is important because we learn to trust our intuition by sitting alone, with no stimulation, and being in silence. You will also try out, and learn how to eat a plant-based diet, get the answers to your nutrition questions, get TONS of resources, and receive all you need to know to shop and cook delicious plant-based meals at home. And you get support all the way. (Don’t worry, there's yoga too!)
In the past, we had a program called BeYou (yoga+meditation). It was fabulous. Blaine also hosted a program in Colorado called BeNourished (plant-based diet challenge). Also fabulous. The world has since changed, and so has the Yoga Hive tribe! With the planet in peril, we need to change our habits NOW. We need radical accountability for our choices and behaviors. And radical support.
So we built it:
Challenge You: 40 Days of Yoga Hive Radical Wellness
Over 40 days and 6 meetings (which can be watched remotely) we will learn to meditate, learn some yoga as part of a daily practice (about 30 mins a day) and learn to eat less sugar, alcohol, meat, dairy, eggs and processed food... all with in-person and remote support from me (Mollie), remote support from Blaine (YH Colorado owner, certified in plant-based nutrition), in-person support weekly from Shelle (long-time plant-based enthusiast and Yoga Hive yoga/meditation teacher), and support from the tribe who signs up with you. We will have a social platform to communicate with each other between meetings, post recipes, send love and ask questions.
Here's how it works:
We start Monday, January 13th and have in-person meetings on Mondays from 7:30-9pm in Columbia Falls. The meeting will start with 30 minutes of meditation and yoga (which will be recorded so you can practice it every day in the week that follows). After, we will have a one hour meeting discussing a new topic each week, building healthy habits for 2020 and beyond.
Can’t make a meeting? Can't make any meetings? No problem. Either join live on Zoom, or we will record everything and you can do this from home at your own pace!
The 40 days officially starts on January 14th (with the first meeting Jan 13th to learn how this works) and ends on February 23rd. Six Monday meetings (Jan 13, Jan 20, Jan 27, Feb 3, Feb 10, Feb 17). You'll also get an amazing manual with a TON of information!
We’re so sure of these transformational practices that if you attend (or watch) all the meetings, practice daily (including meditation every day without missing a day), log your experiences, and complete all of the homework assignments, and STILL don’t see positive changes in your well-being, we’ll give you your money back. Yes. For real.
You can buy this as a stand alone or include 40 days of a Yoga Hive Membership for unlimited yoga over this period. We have 4 options:
Options 1 & 2, if you purchase before January 1st:
No more waiting. No more excuses. It's time to get on board with your own evolution and trust that intuition deep within! Remember: If you don't cultivate what you have to offer the world, NO ONE WILL HAVE IT. The world needs you... and ChallengeYou is the support you've been waiting for!
Come to our mala making workshop September 15th!
Join me (Mollie) on Sunday, September 15th for a Full Moon Mala Making Workshop and Japa Meditation Introduction, from 10:30am-1:30pm. During this three-hour workshop, you’ll get to pick a mala kit of beads with a special meaning behind the stones like jade, amethyst, amazonite and more. We'll research stone meanings, so that you can assure you have the kit most suited to your needs at the moment. Then we’ll hand-tie our own malas (a knot between every bead!), and I’ll go over the basics of Japa, and how to use your mala. Before you leave, you’ll get to choose a Sanskrit Mantra that will help you re-write whatever thoughts are running through your head and then we’ll take on a challenge together, with a Facebook group for accountability. Cost is $65 per person, all materials included. Click here to register! Monthly Unlimited Autopay members, reply to this email if you want to sign up, and I’ll register you using your card on file for only $45… that’s $20 off!
When I was a kid, my mom told me I’d scream if I was left in a sandbox. I’d cry if I stained a new outfit. I absolutely couldn’t stand being dirty. To this day, every time I stain a new outfit (which is literally anytime I put something new on my body), I still have this moment of shame and disappointment.
Flash forward to spending summers at summer camp. At camp, being dirty was the name of the game. Intermittent showers... playing outside 90% of the time... running around in the mud, dirt, sand, you name it. Dirt-phobia didn’t stand a chance, and I LOVED it. I felt like myself — more focused on my alignment with the earth, than being attached to material "things."
There's a term in yoga for non-attachment to sensory objects that I was practicing before I even knew what a "down dog" was.
Then after my junior year in college, I stopped spending summers in Northern Wisconsin, and I didn’t spend a ton of time getting dirty. In fact, I was the Style Editor of a women’s magazine, so my job was the exact OPPOSITE of getting dirty.
Unbeknownst to me, that weird, unexplainable childhood phobia set back in. I was attached to all my things — and I clung to them, and I incessantly aimed to keep free of animals, dirt, and messes.
Enter: Off grid living.
People ask me all the time why I choose to live off grid. Sean and I have been living off grid in both Montana and Alaska.
Sure, it's hard work. Chopping wood. Waking up to 40-degree (or colder!) mornings in the yurt when the fire goes out. Struggling to start a fire because the pipes aren't drafting. Hauling 7-gallon water jugs in a sled up a steep hill. Riding a snowmachine or 4-wheeler 3+ miles from where I park my car... in the rain, snow, ice, mud or shine.
I love this way of life because I get that feeling I got at summer camp, year round. It helps me feel like myself. Living off grid helps me regularly appreciate the wind. The birds (like I said last week!). The moon cycles. The snow and rain. My days — and power source — are governed by the sun, and my survival is dependent on my own will, instinct and desire. We had the privilege of building our own home, learning all the skill sets we wish we had learned as kids. (Side note: Our full episode of Building Off Grid is now available on the Discovery Network here!)
We all have our own ways of getting gritty in our day-to-day lives, don't we? It doesn't have to be literal dirt under your fingernails! Running a small business, being a mom, volunteering at a nonprofit, working at a job you love, just living life as best as you can. As a part of the Yoga Hive tribe in one way or another, you likely share my same desire to be authentic, intentional, and mindful in your everyday life, right?
If you're ready for a reset this winter, that's exactly what we're doing tonight at BeYou. Harnessing the power of yoga, meditation, nutrition, and self-study, you are guaranteed to experience radical shifts toward doing what you were born to do in this life: Be yourself.
It doesn't matter if you're hard-working entrepreneur, momma, partner, nurse, volunteer or otherwise! This program is for you if you're ready to kick things into gear. Reset. Refresh and Transform the way you live and work.
For 21 days (the minimum length of time it takes to start a new habit!), we will meet once a week on Tuesdays from 6:45-7:45pm for yoga in Kalispell, and from 8-9pm for personal development. You don't even have to be there in person! I'll be recording every session and posting it on our private BeYou Facebook group (or on Google Drive to be downloaded for those who aren't on social media!).
In addition to our 4 in-person meetings together, you'll get daily inspiration and tools to jumpstart healthy habits, including daily yoga and meditation (including videos and audios you can use at home!), inquiry and planning activities inspired by The Desire Map by Danielle Laporte, thoughtful nutrition education with a customized challenge, and more. Plus — I write you an inspiring email every single day to keep the challenge every present in all of our minds.
You'll close out the 21-days with a fresh perspective, the motivation to tackle whatever you've got going on in your life, and the courage to be the best version of yourself. You can purchase the program as a standalone for only $44, or couple it with a discounted month-long membership to Yoga Hive for $132.
In light and love,
After two relatively sleepless nights traveling across the country, I sat on the bed of my hotel room in Nashville earlier this week and closed my eyes for meditation. It wasn't 30 seconds in that I heard them...
Birds. Chirping outside my window.
Such a simple moment. Even as I realized they were there, they were gone — it was a fleeting experience that could have so easily gone unnoticed. But it didn't... and that makes all the difference.
Hearing the birds, or looking up into a clear night sky filled with stars, or seeing a pale, translucent moon on the horizon in early evening… these tiny moments represent pure presence. Noticing those little things can transport my tired, monkey mind into a silent, pure field of awareness — like the flick of a switch.
But I didn't always recognize this.
A few years ago, I spent most of a hot, Montana summer with Sean, building a tiny cabin on our property for a show on DIY/Discovery called Building Off Grid. And when I say building a house, I mean literally Sean and I (along with some incredibly generous friends) out there with our bare hands: Building. A. House. (Mind you: Without any experience building other than a yurt!). Our timeline was tight — the network gave us three months. THREE MONTHS.
Let’s just say I have incredible respect for those who make their living building homes.
But that summer was stressful in many ways — the house was one thing. Sean had just gone through a second autoimmune diagnosis of Lupus, and a broken ankle during the build process, which he’s very open about. Yoga Hive was still very fledgling and I was working my buns off to figure out how to best serve our communities.
I was burning out.
Until the day I heard the birds —which didn’t happen until after the TV crews were gone and the house was built. I remember thinking, “THIS! This is what I was missing!”
Hearing the birds transports me out of future worries… away from past regrets… straight to the present moment. And I still use that technique to this day; when in doubt, turn to nature to flip my perspective. It's almost so simple, it seems too simple. But as I gain more life experience each year, I realize over and over again that the simplest things are often the ones we need the most.
(And if you absolutely can't hear the birds? Then, yoga!)
In light and love,
Hands down: Worst feeling ever.
It was Sunday afternoon, and I was sitting in my hotel room in Washington DC before catching my flight back to Montana Monday morning. I was laying in bed, exhausted from a 3-day Riding On Insulin ski/snowboard camp with kids, and I hopped on Instagram to post about my upcoming Chakra workshop (tonight in Whitefish!). I noticed @YogaHiveMontana had a new message.
It was a sweet note from a friend, who mentioned she was waiting outside the Columbia Falls studio for me, wondering if everything was OK.
It was a slow connection for my brain to piece together... I wasn't sure exactly what she meant. Had I made plans to meet her there? I hadn't seen her in a while. What classes were happening at the studio? Did an instructor miss their class.....
UGH. There it was: It was me.
For the first time in nearly four years of running Yoga Hive, I spaced on getting a sub for my 10:30am class on Sunday morning in Cfalls.
[Can you feel it, too?] Instant sinking feeling in the gut... followed by a few minutes of research on who had registered online, and then many more minutes sending apology emails, texting around to see who could have been waiting outside... all the while just feeling like garbage.
I know we're all human, and these things happen. I even tell new Yoga Hive teachers it happens at least once to everyone, and we expect that it shouldn't happen twice. Now I can say with confidence that it's even happened to me... and I know how it feels!
But how do we own up to our mistake, and transform that awful feeling in the gut to something positive at the end of the day?
Monday morning, nearly a day later, I was still beating myself up about it. I knew I needed to pull out of that negative headspace. Coincidentally, I got an email that morning from Danielle Laporte. She's currently running a free online course for her Firestarter Sessions content, and the first line of her email was, "Mistakes happen."
You can say that again!
She goes on, "Big, dumb, stupid, lazy mistakes. Fat frickin’ messes that you will regret for a very long time. And no affirmation or predeterministic thinking will change the fact that you’ve done wrong. And when you can get that real about it, you don’t need to waste energy protecting your ego or pouring on the sweetener. You can use that energy to clean up the mess and love yourself while you’re doing it."
DLP closes that paragraph with the best nugget that I SO needed to hear:
"Failure only turns into a lesson if it shifted your perspective or the way that you behave. It’s not a gift unless it transforms you."
I worked through the Comfort Zoning worksheet she provided with the email to remind myself of the things I can turn to when I need to lift myself up (reply here if you want a copy — happy to pass it along!). Through that work, I remembered that for me, confronting failure and shifting my negative guilt into a positive outcome happens if I write about it... like I always do. Of course I'm going to be EXTRA cautious getting subs for future classes—that's a no brainer. But taking it one step further and helping others is the best way I can transform a mistake into good for the world.
So here I am. And I'm so sorry!
If you were waiting outside the Cfalls studio this past weekend and haven't received a personal email from me, please reply here and I'll do everything in my power to make it right. If this has ever happened to you at any time in the history of Yoga Hive and you feel we haven't made it right, reply here and tell me about it. Trust is built over the course of many small acts... and I know I speak on behalf of all our instructors at Yoga Hive when I say: We don't take our responsibility to you lightly!
And for anyone out there who has made a mistake of your own: YOU GOT THIS. Own it, do what you can to make it right, and move on. Let the guilt go by correcting your intellect and changing your behavior over time. [And it goes without saying: I know how you feel!]
In light, gratitude and genuine apology,
Mollie Busby is the owner of Yoga Hive, and writes inspirational musings for our newsletter, which we post here, along with upcoming trainings and workshops. To filter, navigate using the links above to see the category you're interested in. If you have questions, or wish to get in touch with Mollie, drop in to a class, or connect online: