September 23, 2017

Learning to do things in a different way

Two character strengths that significantly contribute to my well-being are Creativity and Love of Learning. These interconnect in my career as a teacher of two seemingly disconnected subjects: the business of art and restorative yoga. The VIA Institute of Character Classification of Strengths motto for Creativity is to “do things in a different way” and the motto of Love of Learning is to “learn something from every situation.” These statements describe the deep engagement I feel in the flow of teaching both yoga and business.

Although I recognize that both yoga and business are the foundation for deeper meaning in my life, the combination is not easy to explain to potential clients or to my supportive family. 

This dichotomy causes self-doubt and frustration that turn into negative thinking. To resolve this tension I contracted a business development specialist to help me identify how to interconnect these two areas of teaching into one easily understood whole. After several missed deadlines for delivering her proposal, the consultant admitted that she could not identify any correlation between yoga and business. 

I felt stumped. Was there really no connection? Surely, my desire to do things in a different way had a greater purpose.


-->
What I now realize is that a search for meaning and a sense of achievement in my life-work is not something I can farm out to a consultant. As a creative person I thrive on doing things a different way based on what I learn from every situation. Focusing on the positive relationships I have with my students and clients, I see the connection: Business and Bodies are both studies of systems that can be explored, understood and improved for improved health. 

My lifework is to guide people in articulating their vision, exploring the current reality in relation to their goal and developing options and solutions to pursue their intentions. Ultimately, finding this connection has been an opportunity for me to go deep into my belief system and affirm my unique way of creating and learning. I love learning to do things differently. 

September 9, 2017

Truth and Trust

Listening to National Public Radio this morning on the way home from yoga, their seasonal fund drive was on the air. The host said

Yes, that resonates with me.

But where?
Friends
Spiritual gatherings
Nature
Social Media channels
School...

...actually, in ourselves is the place to start. We need to be, first and foremost our own source of truth and place of trust.

Namaste.

August 22, 2017

Master the Business of Art!

It is official - I launched my new venture!
Artsightful to provide arts management training, insight coaching and capacity consulting to build thriving arts ventures and inspiring careers! My goal is to share insights into the business of art.

Join the e-newsletter 
Be the first to know about upcoming programs for artists, creative entrepreneurs, arts managers, and board members. 

Check out the program calendar for our design-thinking sessions launching in October 2017!

Are you an arts management trainer who would like to offer a session or series? Learn how to partner with Artsightful.
Contact informatin
Email: amy@artsightful.com
Phone: 415.994.9901
Address: 901 Mission Street, Suite 306, San Francisco, CA 94013


June 6, 2017

4As: Affirming Intention as a Daily Practice

Each day I am starting with a practice of identifying my Aim, Attitude, Action, and Achievement to set and move forward with intention. So much of my work is focused on others, that this is an opportunity to focus on me in the context of collaborating with my clients, students and co-workers. The following is adapted from the book How to Have a Good Day by Caroline Webb.

The 4As

  • Aim: What is my intention, my purpose, my focus for the day?
  • Affirmation: This is a positive affirmation of wow am I approaching this aim? What qualities am I bringing to this the purpose?
  • Action: What work, knowledge and influence am I bringing to the aim?
  • Achievement: How will I know that I have reached my aim?

Example1: Working with a strategic planning client

  • Aim: to provide guidance, direction and focus to a group that has strong voices and high expectations
  • Affirmation: I have the tools, experience, knowledge, and context of the big picture perspective, plus the voice to speak clearly, and concisely
  • Action: listen, provide observations, give direction, and stay focused on actionable items that are realistic in the context of strategic planning, while playing the role of translator of ideas into action steps
  • Achievement: I have provided guidance, insights, have documented actionable items, taken responsibility for my specific role and what I need to deliver, while not over-promising

Example 2: Leading a restorative yoga class

  • Aim: to create a safe space in which there is a sense of connection to community
  • Affirmation: I have the tools, experience and resources to facilitate the group; students trust me and value my voice
  • Action: Teach from my heart, feel the safety within myself and share that calmness and connection with others
  • Achievement: Following the final meditation, create a mandala from twine in which each participant is holding a connection point and we have woven a safe space where we can breath more easily and deeply

As I read these examples I had the second A as Attitude but I changed it to Affirmation. it is clear that this step gives me focus and sets me up for success.

February 13, 2017

February Yoga Urban Retreat: Lunar Practice

Sunset Tree (c) Amy Kweskin
The night is time for slowing down, softening the body, easing the breath and calming the mind. Join me for an evening of nurturing and balancing your body-mind-breath connection. Escape from your urban surroundings as the lights are dimmed, candles lit and soft music and nature sounds fill the studio. 
Treat yourself to two hours of gentle yoga and restorative poses in a safe and nurturing environment.  

Saturday, February 18
6:00 - 8:00pm Yoga Practice
8:00 - 9:00pm Optional Potluck
$20 per person
Register here:
Anasa Yoga
4232 MacArthur Blvd, Oakland, CA 94619
Bring a friend, as my intention is to create a supportive and nurturing community of practice.
Appropriate for all levels and capabilities.
 
This 2-hour class will be followed by an optional evening potluck in Anasa’s lounge. If you are able to stay after class and gather in community, please bring a dish or beverage to serve 4-6 people.

January 31, 2017

Playlist for Women's Lib

Need some musical inspiration? Checkout this Women's Liberation playlist featured in the Smithsonian Folkways Magazine,  a publication of the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, put together this inspiring playlist.

"In recognition of the 2017 Women's March on Washington, Smithsonian Folkways spotlights songs of women's liberation. Spanning several decades of material, the themes in this playlist range from labor conditions and civil rights to women's health and the legal system. Featuring artists such as Quetzal, Barbara Dane, Peggy Seeger, and Malvina Reynolds, Smithsonian Folkways honors the many women and men who contribute to furthering public discourse on women's rights." 

This is a screen shot - click here to listen.



January 28, 2017

Nourished by our diversity we shine brigther

The United States of America
a country brightened
by our diverse population

We are all
immigrants 
refugees
who seek luminosity
in our quest for self-actualization
community connection

Together we are a rainbow of light
arching across lands, seas, skies
beyond borders
our glow fueled
by hopes
and
by dreams

Open our hearts
open our minds
open our hands
open our borders to the possibilities

Nourished by our diversity
we shine brighter

-Amy Kweskin

January 12, 2017

Melt Away Tension and Set Intentions for 2017

Join me at my Urban Retreat of gentle and restorative yoga the evening of Saturday 1/21, 6-8pm at Anasa Yoga.

Followed by an optional potluck.

 

More information and to register, visit:

http://www.anasaoakland.com/events-workshops/