Journal Entry #1-Communication



            Communication is the biggest thing that can make or break any relationship, romantic or otherwise.  If a person fails to communicate their feelings correctly, the other person in the relationship are unaware of the others true feelings and can act opposite of how they should for the other.  Often times one person in the relationship chooses to not communicate their feelings for fear of being rejected or misunderstood, so resentment then builds for the other parties in the relationship.  This is unfair to the other people in the relationship because they are acting only according to what information has been made available to them.  I truly believe that communication is the biggest responsibility we have in entering into any kind of relationship with someone.

            I have lived the experience of not communicating first hand and it played a huge part of how my life is today.  My ex-husband was apparently unhappy in our relationship for several years.  If he would have communicated with me earlier in the relationship when he first began having those feelings, perhaps we could have saved our relationship.  If he would have communicated with me sooner, I think our divorce could have been filled with more love rather than with so much anger and hate.

            My current husband also dealt with similar circumstances.  He acted from a place of religious devotion and felt the urgency of marriage and failed to communicate his fears with his girlfriend at the time.  Because of the education he had from his religion, he felt the urgency to marry, found a girl “worthy”, and married her without ever confronting his true feelings of not being ready to marry.  His now ex-wife felt similar fears and also failed to communicate them, and so the marriage happened as well as their subsequent divorce.  Because of their lack of communication at the beginning of their relationship, they didn’t communicate during their marriage and infidelity came into the picture. 

            I see so many examples of heartbreak happening at the hands of lack of communication.  It is so scary to be open to communicate, however.  Open and honest communication means vulnerability, which does not come easily in this society.  We are supposed to be strong and fierce and know what we want and go out and get it.  But what happens when those things don’t match up with what is really going on in our heart?  If we ignore what is truly happening inside, we choose not to communicate truthfully.  We choose to live in a place of without authenticity.   

In retrospect, I can see how my ex-husband chose to not communicate his truth because of fear.  He chose to fight the truth until his lack of authenticity took over his fear.  In a way I commend that.  I honestly don’t think I could live in a situation that long, not living authentically.  I also can see the beauty in what he did because he didn’t want to hurt us.  His fear may have held him back, but it saved his children from heartbreak before they were ready to take it.  His fear allowed us to bring our third baby into the world.  His fear gave me more time to become strong enough to handle the repercussions of his lack of communication.

Communication is the biggest and most important aspect of life because we live among others.  I have realized in my acting more mindfully that as important as communication is, our reaction to communication or lack thereof is just as important.  I believe that with practice it will be more possible for me to begin looking at situations from a more logical perspective and I can understand where people come from in their communication or lack of.

Empowerment Sequence

Katie Willden


Final Presentation Sequence

Empowerment sequence

Warm-up:  3-5 rounds Surya Namaskar A (Sun Salutation A)



Uttanasana-Forward Fold

Ardha Uttanasana-Half Back

Forward Fold

Plank-Uttihita Chaturanga Dandasana

Adho Muka Svanasana-Down Dog

From Down Dog, come to all fours and then Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose) and hold hands at heart center, ujaii breathing and brief meditation (3-5 minutes).

Ustrasana-Camel Pose

Place hands on hips to start and begin bend back.  Lower hands to heels if desired.


-Childs Pose, a couple of breaths

Come into Down Dog


Raise Right leg, reach and stretch up and bring forward through hands to

Virabhadrasana I (Warrior I)-

open heart with scapula rooted firmly into the back

Virabhadrasana II (Warrior II)

Namaskar Parsvakonasana-

Standing prayer twist in lunge


Modification:  place back knee to ground

Down Dog

Release with hands on each side of the foot

Anahatasana-Heart Chakra Pose

Come to all fours with hips over knees and walk hands out in front till arms are straight and lower heart and forehead to the ground.

Bhugangasana-Cobra Pose

Slide forward on belly.

Down Dog

Repeat on other side of body

Cool Down:


Ardha Matsyendrasana-Half Lord of Fishes

Inhale to lengthen the spine, twist on exhale, switch to other side

Ananda Balasana- Happy Baby

Matsyasana-Fish Pose

Press forearms and elbows down as you lift chest away from floor and release head back onto the floor.



What yoga means to me

I have always had an attraction to yoga.  I started running when I was in eight grade and that began my interest in health and fitness.  I don’t remember exactly where I first heard about yoga, but shortly after starting to run I bought my first yoga video with Rodney Yee.  I really enjoyed it and did it at least weekly for several years.

When I graduated high school, I started questioning a lot of things and I started to find an interest in Eastern philosophy and religion.  When I discovered that yoga was a major component of the philosophy, my interest grew even more.  I started to realize that yoga was not just a physical practice, but was also spiritual and healthy in every way possible.  I began to love yoga and natural living even more after these realizations.

Shortly after discovering these things and feeling that I really wanted this to be my permanent lifestyle, I met my now ex-husband.  He had similar beliefs and interests, so we continued to study and live the lifestyle together.  Our mutual interests made it even more difficult to accept the dissolution of our marriage.  I had created an attachment between my ex-husband and the way of life that I had hoped to live.

I completely stopped living the yoga lifestyle for several years because of this untrue attachment I created between Josh and Yoga.  Not only did the divorce make me abandon my love for yoga, it brought out some dark things in me that I didn’t realize existed.  I became severely depressed, even suicidal.  For several years I lived in this depressed state, allowing substances to become what I looked forward to, more than the time I spent with my children, more than anything.  Life was just tolerated, not lived or even enjoyed.  I was on antidepressants on and off, but they only made things somewhat better, but the suicidal thoughts persisted and so did the depression.

I became apathetic and I continued to live in my victim mentality until the end of 2011, when I finally got sick of it and started to really search for a way to fight my depression once and for all.  In the back of my mind I knew that if I returned to yoga, I’d find my way, but the attachment between Josh and Yoga was still in the back of my mind.  Bringing back yoga meant bringing Josh back for some reason.

I had been fighting the truth about yoga and the universe and what it could do to change my life.  I realize now that I had been afraid of getting out of the comfortable place I found in my depression.  Even though I knew I wanted to not be depressed anymore, it was familiar and it allowed me to take the easy way out.  It took a couple of job changes and finally accepting that the universe is real and abundant and if I pay attention to it, I can create real opportunities for myself.  I can finally beat this depression and find a comfort greater than my victim mentality.

I returned to a previous position with a mortgage company that I worked for in the past a little over a year ago and met a wonderful little thing named Megan.  Megan was in the yoga teacher training program at Salt Lake Community College and my interest in yoga was again peaked.  I had always wanted to be a yoga instructor, but I never thought I had what it took to be an instructor, so I never pursued it.  Megan encouraged me and told me that I would benefit from the training even if I never ended up teaching.  I finally paid attention to what was happening and I realized that the universe was showing me the way to get through my depression.

I had wanted to go back to school for awhile, so I decided that I would just do it for the pure purpose of expanding my personal knowledge and to see where it took me.  In the three months since starting the program, I can attest to how right Megan was about the training being a huge benefit to me.  I am practicing yoga more regularly again and I am living more in the present moment.  I am living more from a place of love and devotion and it is transcending into other areas of my life.

Yoga means more to me than just an exercise in stretching or a power flow class at the gym.  To me, yoga is all knowing.  I can now recognize my ailments and emotional blockages by how I practice on the mat.  I am now learning to recognize my true feelings in the present moment and therefore my depression is much more manageable.  I am learning that these feelings will ebb and flow and I flow with those feelings with more ease.  Just as a pose on the mat can be difficult on some days and easier on others, so is the way of life.  Learning to not dwell so much on my current feelings or circumstances and knowing that they will subside and there will be light again, I am learning to live the authentic life I’ve always envisioned for myself.  I truly believe and have faith that yoga heals all.