Episode 19: Thriving During the Holidays

Thriving During the Holidays: Whenever I'm doing the edits on an episode and I exclaim to myself, "This is really useful material!" I know we've done good work.

In this episode, we talk about various tactics and strategies we can deploy to not just survive but actually thrive during the holiday season, from Thanksgiving through New Year's. We discuss each holiday in turn and talk about the particular issues we might face, from overindulgence around food at Thanksgiving, to dealing with challenging family members and family situations; from how to skillfully navigate the energetic demands that holiday parties can place on us, to handling the challenges of the commercialization of the season.

You might want to keep this episode in rotation during the next few weeks. There's a pretty good chance that we will as well.

Episode 18: Energy Shielding and the Water We Swim In

Energy Shielding and the Water We Swim In: This episode is about using shielding to more effectively navigate the Water We Swim In. Right now in the world there's a strong vibration of chaos, anxiety and fear, and many of us are feeling deeply overwhelmed. Shielding gives us a tool to deal with the challenges that arise from communal stress. Our examples of how and why we might shield start narrow, with talk about shielding in the gym, broaden into a discussion of dealing skillfully with traffic, and then widen outward into some general principles, finishing with the important assurance that shielding is a practice.

Episode 17: Energetic Center and Energy Shielding

Energetic Center and Energy Shielding: This is a very important episode. In this episode, we discuss energy shielding, as a means to protect ourselves from negative energy. We begin our discussion by talking about how to find and expand energetic center, which is necessary in order to shield. We then move on to a discussion about why shielding is necessary. From there, we talk about the necessity of imagination when working with energy. Finally, we discuss how to shield, the feelings that go along with shielding, and the particular challenges that shielding demands of us.

Episode 16: Energy and Flow

Energy and Flow: In this episode, we discuss energy directly for the first time--when and how Jerry teaches it, the connection between it and the breath, and why we use the word "energy" instead of words like chi, prana or kundalini. We talk some about how we can begin to put energy to use in our lives and in making greater change in the world. Finally, we talk about how we can use energy awareness to cultivate flow.

Episode 15: Awakening

Awakening: This episode will be the first of several in a row in which we speak directly about vital energy. In this episode, we talk about Benjamin's shift from being skeptical (to say the least) about the idea of energy to awakening to it as a genuine, verifiable aspect of reality. This awakening unfolded through several key events, until the reality of energy became undeniable.

Episode 14: Navigating Intensity (RPE, Part 4)

Navigating intensity: I'm going to be honest with you: I'm very proud of this episode.

In this episode, we bring together the strands we've introduced over the past several weeks. We take rating our perceived experience, as we've talked about for the past three episodes, and tie that concept in to our discussion of the "the water we swim in," which we talked about back in Episode 10. We use the prism of my (Benjamin's) experience at Burning Man back in August to discuss how we use RPE to navigate intensity in all walks of life. We touch on Jerry's teaching that, when we start down the feeling path, we tend initially to feel worse instead of better, and for those of you who have begun to play with the techniques we shared back in our early episodes, you are probably becoming uncomfortably aware of how the "water we swim in" has become very turbulent indeed. We are living in interesting times; this episode includes some powerful teachings on how to deal with that.

Episode 13: Rating Your Perceived Experience–Putting It Into Practice

Rating Your Perceived Experience--Putting It Into Practice: In this episode, we discuss how to really put RPE into practice. We give a detailed exploration of how RPE will shift through a weight-training set, in order to point out the level of presence RPE practice can offer us. We explore how cardio RPE might differ when we're working in the gym versus running outside. We discuss the problems inherent in doing too much or too little, in both the gym and in our lives in general. Our stories this week include discussons of how to successfully run the Bolder Boulder (an annual 10k in Boulder, CO, that attracts 50,000 participants) and some interesting consulting work Jerry did.

Episode 12: RPE, Part 2

RPE, Part 2: In this epsiode, we continue to explore RPE. We discuss RPE for stretching, and then get into the big subject of food, hunger and satiety. Because talking about food in a fitness context often brings up questions related to weight loss, we talk about strategies for weight loss as well. We finish up with a discussion about the Zone of Moderation.

Episode 11: RPE, Part 1

RPE, Part 1: RPE ("Rate of Perceived Exertion" or "Rate of Perceived Experience") is a big subject, and in this and the next several episodes, we explore it in depth. In this episode, we discuss RPE in the areas of strength-training and cardio. Our conversation takes us into areas as diverse as Buddhism, the energetic cost of performance-enhancing drugs, and (of course) consciousness. There's a lot of material in this episode; we hope you enjoy it.