After 5 hours of sleep on day 1, then leaving the event around 12:30 am on Day 2, we really had to rally to get ourselves & get pumped for another full day. Luckily, day 3 started a little bit later, as Tony & his team knew everyone needed a little bit more sleep. Tony came on stage around 11 am, and we followed along in the workbook until breaking for some more serious emotional work. Day 3 consisted of growth, creating an extraordinary life, figuring out the strengths and weaknesses of different areas of out lives, pillars of progress, breath & meditation work, values & beliefs, and limiting beliefs.
Day 3 was my favorite day, as it forced us to go deep & feel a lot of things & face a lot of fears & let go of limiting beliefs. To start off, Tony talked about 7 areas of constant growth for an extraordinary life:
We went through and graded ourselves on each area of our life on a scale of 1-10. This was done in a wheel format, so we could see the imbalances of each area of our lives:
This is a screeenshot of my “Wheel of Life.” The goal of this exercise was to see where we were happy & thriving in our lives, and what areas we were not. As you can see, my wheel is a little off balance! We were asked, If you were to put this wheel on your car, how well would it work?? Obviously, not very well.
The areas that are the highest-rated (for me) are areas I put a lot of time into. For example – working on friendships & intimate relationships is challenging & important to me, so I devote a lot of time to people. I also work out a lot because I care about my body, and I make time for myself to have fun & bring myself up – so the physical & celebrate area are higher. If I wanted to have a more well-balanced wheel, I would put more time & effort in being more efficient with my time, as well as investing more effort into creating a career that is fulfilling for me.
A few tips given to improve different areas of your life:
- Celebrate yourself when you do something difficult or something you don’t want to do – this helps speed up your progress!
- 2 mm rule: the smallest change can make the biggest difference!
- Train yourself – repetition is key! Devote time everyday to doing small things to work towards improving different areas of your life.
- If you haven’t mastered something, don’t surround yourself with other people to hold you accountable. Find someone who is a master, and learn from them!
Tony then led us through a breathing technique to increases energy & bring gratitude into our daily lives:
3 sets of 10 (pause in between sets)
Lift arms up & breathe in
lower arms down with elbows in & exhale
A gratitude exercise (takes 5-10 minutes!):
Hands to heart
Think of 3 things you are grateful for – be there in the memory, 1 minute per each event, and really feel it
Feel the energy in you – energy comes in and heals every cell, organ, thought, etc. Visualize energy as a light, coming from the center of the earth, through your body, and up towards the sky. Then, send out to everyone else
Think of 3 things you are going to create. Envision the result, and celebrate inside as if they already happened (1 minute per idea)
After going through all of this, Tony began talking about values and beliefs. They determine and control everything in your life, whether you realize it or not.
Values are the emotional states that we believe are important to either experience or avoid.
Basically, we will always believe and act on our values in attempt to meet our basic needs (of certainty, love, etc).
After talking more about beliefs, we wrote down our top 2 limiting beliefs (ex: I am not good enough, I’ll never be loved, I don’t deserve happiness, etc). Then, all children aged 10 and under were asked to leave the room. Tony then led the entire room through the Dickens Process. This exercise was incredibly hard, as it forced you to literally feel your deepest fears, and to force you to see what life would be like if you never changed. It was painful, emotional, and really, really difficult. However, it was such an emotional release for me, and it was exactly why I came to the event. It forced me to be incredibly vulnerable, scream, cry, and feel really uncomfortable emotions.
After Tony led us through letting go of our limiting beliefs, he then had us reprogram new beliefs to replace what we let go of. The entire process lasted from 2 pm to 6 pm, and we were standing for almost the entire time. While it was exhausting and hard, it was (for me) the best part of the event!
You might be asking how the heck anyone had any energy after all of this, and here is video proof of what went on to keep us in state of constant alertness and energy:
Basically, there was a dance party every 10-20 minutes. Music was put on, and we had to get up, move our bodies, and interact with the people around us. It forced us to stay alert & keep our moods up so that we couldn’t get into a negative or sleepy state. The psychology of it all made sense, and it was nice that we weren’t just sitting for 18 hours straight taking notes! Also, if you really want to get as much as possible from the event, I recommend committing to going all 3 days & putting 150% in, as there are many times that you will want to lay down or leave! Between jet lag & 4-5 hours of sleep a night and 14-18 hour days, there were many times I needed a break. However, I made a commitment to myself that I could push through – and I did!
After the Dickens process, we were given a break to eat & come back around 7:30/8 pm. The rest of the night consisted of talking about Career Mastery, someone coming on stage and speaking about how Tony’s programs changed his life, and a sales pitch to attend ALL of Tony’s events (Date with Destiny, Business, UPW, Cleanse retreat, etc). They gave a discounted price, and told everyone they could meet with Tony & get a picture with him if they signed up & committed to the programs.
While it all sounded great, it was a lot to process, and it was a lot of money to commit. I understand Tony has a great system, and if that is something you want to throw yourself at full-force, that is awesome. It’s all about where you want to go in your life & what feels right for you! With that being said, I will definitely attend another event in the future, but when it feels right. I went to UPW to experience what I needed, and it was exactly what I needed at that moment in my life.
At the end of the night, we all danced a little more and ended up leaving around 2:30 am. My cousin & I’s flight was scheduled to leave at 12 pm the next day, so we ended up skipping out on the last half day of the event. The good news is, the workbook given provided a LOT of in-depth information on health/energy/food/diet, which I was able to read on the plane. I consider myself a really intuitive, healthy person in great physical shape, so I felt like it was something I could afford to miss out on.
Overall, the event was amazing. It was a completely different experience than anything I’ve done before, and I highly recommend it for anyone looking for growth in their lives!
So that’s it! 52 hours of learning in the span of 3 days, 13 hours of sleep, and 12+ hours of traveling to get to the event – all completely worth it! Has anyone else attended UPW or any other Tony Robbins event? I’d love to hear about your experience! Or, if you are thinking about going, leave a comment below!
This past week, I teamed up with G10 Photography, a local photographer in Columbus, to do a mini yoga photo shoot. I really love being able to try new things, and the whole experience was very cool!
One thing you should know about me is that I am a total nerd – I prepare and organize everything in my life, down to typing up notes and writing out my entire weeks agenda 1-2 weeks ahead of time. Since I am still fairly new to this whole yoga photography thing, I planned everything beforehand: picking out poses I wanted to do/try, different outfits to wear, etc. I even had my friend come with me to help out/direct me, because sometimes it’s hard knowing what I actually look like in the poses I’m doing!
After I arrived, I changed and stretched a LOT, so I was ready to go after about a half hour. I honestly don’t know how fit models do it – I was exhausted near the end from holding all of the poses, and am so glad I brought water and a snack to eat! We spent a total of about 2 hours in his studio – below are a few of my favorite shots!
This entire past week has been crazy – between running the quarter marathon on Saturday, I’ve also been packing for my trip and cramming in last minute study sessions with my required yoga reading list. Lot’s of late nights – up until 12:30 am studying, only to get up at 5:30 am for 7 mile runs + yoga classes 1-3 nights a week. Working 50 hours a week, fitting in guitar lessons, book club and seeing friends & family, I feel like I haven’t slept in years. But i LOVE it. I wouldn’t trade this craziness for anything in the world!
Anyways – back to yoga.. You know how I said I was total nerd and prepared for everything? Well, I take notes when reading my yoga books, and have even typed up the entire Baptiste Power Yoga flow so I can clearly see everything laid out in front of me. I learn best when engaged in all types of learning styles – visual, hearing, hands on.. Reading notes & asking my yoga teachers a lot of questions after class are 2 ways I’ve been learning the past few months, but I haven’t been able to actually TEACH. And teaching a yoga class – with me as the only student – isn’t exactly the same as teaching someone else how to do yoga ?
I wanted to start practicing teaching a little bit in order to become more familiar with the Baptiste Power flow sequence, and fortunately for me, I have a lot of willing friends to volunteer as students! This past Thursday, I taught my first Yoga “class” – and by class, I mean my friend came over and I led her through a 50 minute power yoga flow. I was a little nervous and had to look at my notes a few times, but I did it… and loved it! (I found a Playlist made by Yoga Girl on Spotify and it was perfect!)
Actually teaching someone is very different than doing it alone – trying to find the right words to say, how to say it, knowing the correct pose names, the different sequences… it was nerve-wracking, and almost a little uncomfortable. I think about how awesome all of my yoga teachers are, and how they always have the most profound or touching things to say during their class. Having an impact on someone, even if it is just for 50 minutes, can change their thinking, their mood, their day… It’s such a beautiful thing. Every teacher is different, and I think with practice, it will get easier and easier to become more comfortable in teaching and finding my own voice.
For all you Yoga teachers (or any teacher!) out there – how did you learn to teach? What were the most challenging things when getting your YTT certification? The most fun or satisfying? I would love to hear from you!
With the whirlwind of the past few months, I have slowly been changing. In the past, I had locked myself up, thrown away the key, and allowed my true self to stay snuggled deep inside. I stayed within the confines of my own comfort zone, wanting to go forward, but never knowing exactly how to do it. There was constant conflict going inside, and an unsettling feeling that just wouldn’t go away. Unhappiness drove me to a breaking point, until I finally listened to my heart.
Once I finally did that, I felt free. I started doing things that felt right, listening to my intuition and not fighting every little thing in my life. I learned to slow down, and not always rush to something deemed more important than the moment I was in. I had way more energy, and I started to love being around people. I stopped worrying about what others thought of me, and my only concern shifted to how I could impact others in a positive way. Standing back and observing, it was almost like watching a flower bud grow, slowly opening up to a beautiful flower.
I always think of the quote from A Course in Miracles that says,
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all of the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
I spent a lot of my life attaching myself to others, blaming others for how I felt, blaming myself for my own misconstrued perception of who I thought I was, or judging other people. Always wondering why someone couldn’t love me, or why they didn’t like me. Looking back, I realize that I was always going after something or someone to save me from my unhappiness. I was so concerned with these problems outside of myself, and I never stopped to take a look inside.
Once I started looking inward – I was able to come to terms with my life. I could take responsibility for how I felt, how I perceived others, and what type of life I could live. I started tearing down these barriers inside, and only then did I realize that I was the only one dimming my light. I had created this life of constant let downs and failures, and I was the only one that could fix it.
The only control you have 100% of in life is your thoughts and your actions. You can’t control how other people treat you, if tomorrow you will be fired from your job, or even lose a loved one. But you can control how you view others, and you can also control how you view yourself. Once you realize this, it is the most terrifying yet empowering feeling you could ever have. So look to others with love – look at yourself with love – and listen to that intuition deep down, telling you to be yourself with no reservation. You know it’s there. And if you ever forget, remember to break down those barriers, and let your light shine through.
Have you ever just felt so…crazy? Like you have so many thoughts going through your head, and all you want to do is scream and cry and just let it all out… but it’s stuck inside you, like this black hole, consuming you and sucking away at your happiness.
I’ve read so many books on letting go, meditating, gone to seminars, etc… but the one thing I’ve taken away is this: Only you can let go. Only you can face that black hole, that sadness, those dark memories you have tucked away for so long. You know, deep down inside, how to free yourself. What are you scared of? Feeling these dusty thoughts of doubt, hate or sadness? What are you running from? Success? Failure? Lack of love? Whatever it is, know this: IT IS NOT REAL.
Those feelings you have? those are caused by your thoughts. Those thoughts you have? They come from your Ego. That Ego that you let control your life? It only originates from a lack of love. So at your core being, you are really truly suffering from an illusion of lack of love. And I say illusion, because there is no such thing as a lack of love – anything that is not love, is not real.
There is only God, who is love, and lives in our core being. We have this love inside of us, but our ego lets us live continuously in fear, causing us to forget that we ARE love. Fear that we are not good enough, fear that we are ugly, unwanted, unloved… It is the world’s biggest lie.
Change your thoughts, change your life. Your mind controls everything – your thoughts, your body, any illness you have, your perspective on life. And we live our lives, day in an day out, believing that this is how its supposed to be. Have you ever tried to challenge those thoughts? Standing up to that bully in your head? All of our lives, we have been taught to grow up and live a standard life, full of education, work, and eventually, death. Try to be perfect, be the best, be the prettiest, be the richest… and our thoughts are constantly consumed with the fear of not meeting these expectations. And they aren’t even OUR expectations! They are put in our heads by other people!
Why believe these negative thoughts? Challenge them. Stand up to them. Love them. Know that they are not real, and replace them with loving thoughts of what YOU want your life to be like. Happiness. Love. Adventure. Positivity.
How? Face those uncomfortable thoughts and feelings. Feel them. Kick, cry, scream. And then let go of them… and be Free.