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atlanta

Atlanta! The Manifestation Workshop: On Being Human.

August 8, 2015

Update: The workshop in March was so full that we added a second, and there was still a long wait list. Unfortunately, I am only doing ONE in August so book asap.

This workshop is NOT your typical yoga workshop nor is it about the asana (poses.) It’s about being human. It’s about letting go of fear. Join us in welcoming Jen Pastiloff back to FORM {yoga} with her signature Manifestation workshop. What are you manifesting? If I wasn’t afraid I would…? How may I serve others? What makes me come alive? Who would I be if nobody told me who I was? Questions like this and many more will be sought out and answered in this unique workshop which truly connects the mind and body. This truly unique workshop combines body movement and writing (as well as a few dance parties and singing and some kicking and laughing ). All levels welcome. Expect to flow, sweat, sing, write, dance and laugh as you let go of what is no longer serving you and manifest what you want in your life. This workshop is nothing short of a life changing immersion.

Expect to go beyond your comfort zone. Come see why Jen travels around the world with this workshop and sells out. This experience is about life: unpredictable, sometimes messy, beautiful and human.

*Please bring a journal & pen, some water, an open heart and a sense of humor. Studio will open 20 minutes prior to the workshop.

Workshop purchases are non-refundable, but may be transferred to another individual for the same event only. If you notify us via email a studio credit LESS a $25 administrative fee will be issued (yogareformers at gmail dot com) with at least 72 hours notice before the start of the event. No other refunds or credits are available under any circumstances. Due to space restrictions our workshop policy is firm.

 

death, Family, Guest Posts

Little Black Dress: A Resurrection.

January 28, 2015

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By Amy Tsaykel.

In the midst of a glaring summer, I see only black. I’m striding through aisles of colorful, racked clothing that normally might provide hours of distraction—but today I am focused. Not even my girlfriend who part-times at the outlet mall can regale me with her usual gossip. I’m on a mission, I explain, for a funeral dress.

I must be absolutely perfect for my grandfather.

Granddad was 91 years old when he decided to stop treatments for leukemia. Precisely according to his wishes, hospice was called, along with the longtime family minister and his five children. We all agreed that he was lucky to pass so quickly. Grace, dignity, and good fortune—the hallmarks of Granddad’s life—reigned until the very end.

Mom called me to deliver the news and was, amid her mourning, surprisingly pragmatic. She and her siblings had (per their father’s wishes) already been sorting his belongings. What did I want, she asked: hand tools? whiskey tumblers? One of his paintings?

“Clothes,” I replied, without hesitation. Why?

Jen Pastiloff is the founder of The Manifest-Station. Join her in Tuscany for her annual Manifestation Retreat. Click the Tuscan hills above. No yoga experience required. Only requirement: Just be a human being.

Jen Pastiloff is the founder of The Manifest-Station. Join her in Tuscany for her annual Manifestation Retreat. Click the Tuscan hills above. No yoga experience required. Only requirement: Just be a human being.

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Abuse, Guest Posts, healing, Self Image

Divorcing the Voice.

December 20, 2014
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By Janet Raftis

I remember when I woke up, that sensation of feeling like I was falling down into my skin. For me, it happened not long after sobriety, and it was like a veil was simultaneously lifting as my body expanded outward in a way that allowed me to feel my skin for the first time.

It tingled and I think my feet touched the ground for the first time in my life. I don’t remember if I laughed or if I cried, and most likely it was both. I do know that it was overwhelming in the sweetest way imaginable. I actually liked the way it felt, even and in spite of the fact that I didn’t know what to do with it.

It was like a long intermission was finally over.  There had been this limbo state for me that lasted a few decades, in which I was separated from myself, dueling it out with this silent demon in my mind.

This Voice had gotten so good at cursing me and cutting me down that I had come to think of it as me. I had come to believe that the Voice I heard in my head was telling me the truth, and I allowed it to treat me far worse that any other person ever had.

It was crueler than my rapists, sharper in tongue than any high school girl, more vicious than any person that had attacked or robbed me. It was out to get me. And I was handing myself over to it without even a fight, head bowed in silent, frustrated submission.

The truth is I didn’t know that I was even in there anymore. I was a shell, bouncing around in a seemingly empty and echoing container. Even the happiness I experienced was overshadowed by fear and a sense of complete and utter isolation. I had so little faith in me that I couldn’t even believe in the sincerity of others’ feelings towards me. The Voice told me I didn’t deserve them, and so I kept an emotional distance from everyone for fear that their love would be taken away.

Finding myself again was a slow process that began unfolding a little over a decade ago and that has since found a rhythm that supports an often difficult but beautiful, constant and expansive growth. It was the love affair that I’d never had with anyone else, and the relationship that needed to be established before any other liason could ever take root.

First I had to get honest with myself. The reason I believed the Voice was because I didn’t believe in me. Gazing steadily at myself in the mirror, I had to acknowledge the fact that I didn’t really know anything about me. Who was beneath that reflection, and why had I been running from her? I’d kept myself at a superficial level of understanding because the thought of what I might uncover if I went deeper scared the hell out of me. But all of that stuff that I’d pushed down contained clues about me, and it was begging to be addressed.

I had to back up and open my arms wide so that I could open to the possibility of me. I had to give myself a break (sometimes even in tiny five minute increments), and I had to accept myself exactly where I was – all of it, even the self-hatred and fear. I had to acknowledge that I felt blemished and overlooked. I had to allow myself the space to accept every little bit of me that so that I could start exactly where I was.

As I started to notice and to actually feel my feelings, I began to witness a wonderful, albeit strange, occurrence. Initially, I spent a lot of time questioning my relationship with God and that led me right back to myself. I got angry and yelled. I got sad and cried. I got frustrated and acted out. But I followed each and every little thread to see where it landed within me, and as I did so, I began to finally understand myself. And as I worked within this new framework, and handled everything that came up instead of stuffing or hiding from it, I began to trust myself. It came in morsels initially, but the trail of crumbs eventually led me to a beautiful, delicious (gluten-free) cake.

I took little steps to work through my fear. Jen Pastiloff’s workshop showed me how to say, “Fuck it!” and give my fears a big, fat kick to the curb. I began to have more faith in the Universe and I began to understand my value. I started to fill up from the inside out rather than trying to do it from the outside in.

Actively engaging in my healing process has shown me that I can and do love myself. It has allowed me to create a bridge of understanding and connection to myself that has grown into a network of support and love, a wheel of light radiating from a center point, which is a (usually) fairly empowered me. As I learned to value myself, I started to attract others that honor me as well.

This has not always been easy and I’ve also called in a few folks and situations that I thought had my best interest at heart that in the end didn’t. Working through those circumstances has been difficult, but empowering. I’ve learned to trust myself even more and to recognize that when I give my power away, I don’t have solid ground to stand on. And so I have built an even stronger foundation based on self-trust blended with community. Most importantly, I know that regardless of how another treats me or how a relationship ends, I am still here, still standing, still the same person that I was only stronger and wiser.

No one can take from me what I’m not willing to give away.

The more I learn to honor myself the less I’m willing to part with. That doesn’t mean that I can’t give to others – I do and it now comes from an authentic space of not needing anything in return. It means that I’m more discerning about how I give of myself and with whom. I’ve learned that I can share more when I’m standing strong.

Silencing the Voice is an on-going process, one that I expect will never completely end. But it doesn’t control me anymore and I’m not afraid to tell it to shut the hell up these days. Standing up to it is standing up for me. And that feels pretty damn good.

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Guest Posts, Inspiration

Invisible Strings.

November 14, 2014

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By Marika Delan.
Fifteen days.
The average number of days in a grace period. It was also the number of days I knew Rose Alma.I wouldn’t have thought that was long enough to get so tangled up in someone else’s thread but I met Rosie on the third day of June. Fifteen days later, I mourned her.I hadn’t even “met” her if you want to get technical. I heard a little of Rose Alma’s story from Jen Pastiloff who had blogged about visiting her in Atlanta, where Rose was hospitalized. Rose had asked Jen to visit her and Jen had gone. Jen had never met her either.

I couldn’t explain how a perfect stranger compelled me to reach out, except that Rose was one of those people whose light could bounce off anything like a mirror in the sun. It’s hard not to want to get close to light like that; it makes everything bright enough to see clearly where there was only darkness before. And Rose reminded me of things I had lost: most recently my nursing job. Thirty years ago, my friend, Lisa Rose.

I felt inexplicably drawn to send Rose a message on Facebook that Monday in June. She was asking all her friends to do random acts of kindness every day of June until her birthday, coming up on June 25th. She would have been 26.

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Inspiration, Video

Live From The Hospital in Atlanta. Being Rosie. Video.

April 28, 2013

Hi Tribe,

Yesterday I went and visited one of my readers. It was the first time we’d ever met and it was truly inspiring. Rosie Alma has cystic fibrosis and just received a double lung transplant. Unfortunately, it wasn’t successful but we know the next transplant will be a  match. Rosie did a guest post here on my blog back in October which I am linking here  in case you missed it.

She’s touched me in so many ways, namely by reminding me how it is possible to be present and full of light despite being in a less than desirable situation. How we react is everything and she is the embodiment of her name: Rosie.

Please like her page on Facebook and support her as well as possibly sending her an email or writing on her wall. Her email is sweet.rosie25@gmail.com. Her page is here.

Also, her brother is videoing and chronicling the whole process. It’s so incredible. You can check that out here.

Contests & Giveaways, Forgiveness, Guest Posts

Forgiveness by Janet Raftis.

February 12, 2013

I had no idea the response for the Forgiveness blog contest would be so overwhelmingly large. There were so many great ones ( I got over 100) that I will publish one every day this week. I love you guys. 

This essay is by Janet Raftis, an inspiring life coach living in Atlanta. Janet has taken a few of my workshops in Georgia at Hazard County Yoga and she is fantastic. Please get to know her. Offer her a comment at the end or connect with her on Facebook. Also, here is a link to her own blog which I suggest you check out.

Click to connect with Janet

Click to connect with Janet

Forgiveness by Janet Raftis.

I spent years punishing myself. I punished myself for things that others had done to me and for things that I had done to others. I did it by systematically beating myself down, abusing my body and numbing myself out. I punished myself for not being good enough, and sometimes I did it for being too good. No matter what I did, or how I acted, it was never right.

I don’t even remember what it was that constituted the first betrayal, but once the ball was set in motion, it snowballed. I found ways to hurt myself and I found ways to hurt others. The punishment increased. I smoked, I drank heavily, I took drugs. I neglected to eat properly, and I gave up athletics. I took to drinking a ridiculous amount of coffee to bring me back up during the day, and the cycle of emotional binging and purging continued.

The self-hatred was carefully disguised, and I never would have believed that I was intentionally harming myself. I admitted to being a little insecure, because that was acceptable. At some point, I realized that I was seriously harming myself – and others – and I sought change. But I didn’t know how to do this. One by one, I dropped my habits of destruction, but the more I shed them, the worse I felt. I teeter-tottered amongst them, searching for balance and never being able to achieve it. I felt naked and scared. I felt isolated and alone. I would drop one vice and then pick up another, each slightly less dangerous than the one before, but harmful nonetheless.

Around four years ago, I formally quit drinking. This was my first lesson in forgiveness. I took a sincere step to do something loving for myself. I started to listen to what other people were suggesting, and I realized that if they could be happy, I could be too. But how? I still felt pretty bad, and I still felt really angry. I had a few resentments that could make my skin crawl. People told me that I had to forgive them. They told me that to not forgive them was to continue to hurt myself. I wasn’t ready to give the resentments up, though. I had a lot of self-righteous anger gnawing at my core. They had hurt me, dammit! They should feel my wrath!

The problem, though, was that they didn’t feel my anger. In some cases, they had no fucking idea, and in others, they just didn’t fucking care. And I was sitting in the corner, stewing in my own muck, feeling hated, alone, unworthy, and violated. Life wasn’t fair! How could it be that those assholes got off scott-free, while I continued to feel so much hurt inside? How was it that I was so raw that even an off look from another could re-open every single wound that I had?

I wasn’t willing to let go, and so I let it sit there for a while, and I worked on cleaning other parts of myself up. The first step in doing this required that I practice acceptance. I had to be willing to accept that I had done some pretty lame things. I had hurt others, either through selfishness, stupidity, or ignorance. I had to see my part in my resentments, and I had to acknowledge that I had done the best that I could do in any given moment with the growth and understanding that I had at the time. It happened the way that it happened, and so there was no other available outcome possible. I had to accept that I am not perfect, and that perfection is not a requirement (nor even really desired) in this lifetime. I began to understand where I was operating from, and that I was not a bad person. I may have been lost, scared, or lonely, but I was not bad. Once acceptance of who I really was set in, forgiveness began to flow naturally.

For the first time ever, I realized that I was a spiritual being having a human experience, and that a huge part of this lifetime is learning to relate and interact with other humans. I was able to see myself compassionately, and this opened a huge door for me. Finally, once I could see myself through the lens of compassion, I could see others through it too.

Some of my resentments just melted away. Once I saw my role in everything, I realized that some of the stuff I was holding onto was just out of sheer self-flagellation. I couldn’t even remember what it was. There were a few things that I had to work at a little harder (and still do at times). I have to constantly go back to compassion. Yes, what this person did hurt me. Why? Is it because I am feeling insecure, lonely, frightened, or unloved? Okay, nix it. Is it because this person was acting from a place of insecurity, loneliness, fear or feelings of being unloved? Okay, forgive it. They are doing the very best that they can.

I have a particularly difficult relationship in my life that I have to maintain. Because letting it go is not an option, I have to practice forgiveness on an almost daily basis. Sometimes I can let things go immediately. I remember that he is not trying to hurt me; he is trying to protect himself. At other times, I have to dig down deep, and pull up every ounce of compassion I have. It can reduce me to tears. I have to remember over and over again that I have played a part in this, and that I still do. What I can control is how I react to it. I have to recall that we are each doing the very best that we can at any given moment. When I can do this, I can find forgiveness. And once the forgiveness comes, I can find gratitude. That is the nugget, right there. The most difficult situations and people that I have had in my life have offered me the greatest moments of growth. They have provided me with the seeds that I want to nurture and grow, and they are the reason that I want to reach out and help others. Learning to love and honor myself enabled me to offer others the same that I would want for myself: compassion and forgiveness.

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My next workshop at Hazard County Yoga outside of Atlanta is Sunday April  28. They sell out quickly so please pre-register and pay by clicking here. See you then.

Gratitude, Guest Posts, Manifestation Workshops

Moments by Kate Berlin.

January 29, 2013

So last weekend I led a sold out workshop in Atlanta. One of the girls in the workshop had driven from Tampa! That’s a 7 hour drive, folks. It blew my mind and what blew it even more was conencting with the girl. Her name is Kate Berlin and she is a phenomenal writer. Anyway, send her some love, will ya? Here is her link on Tumblr.

Here’s what she wrote about the experience:

(Moments)

That’s all we have with the people we love. I’m pretty sure I read that somewhere.

Moments are all we ever have. We no longer have the past. We will never hold onto the future. We can’t.

Last weekend was an out of body experience for me. I ran my first 5K and met Jennifer Pastiloff (writer/yoga inspiration) at a Manifestation Workshop led by her. HUGE stuff. Huge. Huge. HUGE. stuff. So incredibly universally huge that I am seriously left speechless by it all.

I am still speechless by it all.

There were tears, many tears, there was laughter, connection, letting go, forgiving, manifesting, conquering. You name it and it was there.

(There were moments)

And at one point during the workshop we had to sit across a partner and state what we were, no excuses, no explanation. Just straight. I am. This is hard for me, because usually ‘I am’ proceeds with, needy. [I am needy], insecure [I am insecure], not worthy [I am not worthy], you will never make it [I will never make it], but there was none of that allowed, so I really had to dig deep, or actually not really, because our magnificent truth is right there at the surface. It’s peeking, itching, anxious to jump out and proclaim who it is!

(Give it a moment)

So I sat there, dismissing my negativity, dismissing the cliche and spoke the truth, the thing that has always lingered at the tip of my tongue, the brink of my heart, but that normally seems too much of an unattainable dream to be truth, yet it is, so I went for it and proclaimed, “I am a writer”

And I sat there, while this absolute stranger stared into my eyes, into me, her eyes probing, seeing what I just stated as it unfolded…

(in that moment nothing else could be more true).

She was looking, past my thinkings of what if; what if she thinks I am nothing I just proclaimed? And there I was, staring back, and the only thing I could think of was that I had to hold onto this moment. I had to never forget this face. This person who is touching every corner of my truth. Who saw me, as I was, and who I saw, as she is.

(hold onto this moment)

She turned out to be a writer also. She wants the same thing I want. She was a reflection of myself. And I could see her thinking the same thing, feeling the same fears. We both want it, badly, we do and as we stared at each other we were both fearful.

“I just proclaimed I am a writer, to a writer, she will see right through me and question my ability to write, like how I question my own ability to be a writer on a daily basis.”

We both write, but which one of us is the writer? As if there is only room for one, when there is room for many. There are moments for everyone.

(hold onto this moment.)

(hold onto this moment tight)

we lifted each other to such heights, there was nothing else there but the truth. Two writers, sharing a space, sharing energy, sharing a dream.

(sharing a moment)

She wants to be on the best-seller list and she will be. I know this. I never once doubted her ability to be a writer, and when the moment was over I hugged her and told her the only truth I knew of her; she is a writer. She is.

She is a writer. And I am a writer. And we both hold onto moments. We will both forever hold onto that one. Where we were nothing but two writers, wanting so bad to have our words be read.

And all I want is a book, a page, a sentence, read and understood. I want to reach out of these words and hold onto the person who reads this. Can you feel it? Do you see this? I understand. [I understand]. I want that.

I want to do, and see, and hear, and feel and I want to write about it.

I want moments, and I want to showcase them forever with the beauty only words know how to.

I want from point A to point B, I want heaven and hell, the ugliness truth holds and the beauty once it sets, I want all those moments and I want to write about it.

Moments make me a writer.

(Moments will forever proclaim me a writer)

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Jennifer Pastiloff, Beauty Hunter, is the founder of The Manifest-Station. Check out jenniferpastiloff.com for all retreat listings and workshops to attend one in a city near you. Next up: South Dakota, NYC, Dallas, Kripalu Center For Yoga & Health, Tuscany. She is also leading a Writing + The Body Retreat with Lidia Yuknavitch Jan 30-Feb 1 in Ojai (sold out) as well as Other Voices Querétaro with Gina Frangello, Emily Rapp, Stacy Berlein, and Rob Roberge. She tweets/instagrams at @jenpastiloff.

Travels

Atlanta Tales.

April 13, 2012

Hi y’all.

I am here in Atlanta.

Tomorrow morning I will go and see Wayne Dyer and Anita Moorjani speak. To say I am excited is an understatement. I will be bringing my sister Rachel, who has never seen Wayne live and we are going as his daughters’ guests.

Couldn’t be a more perfect situation. Stay tuned for blog posts this week about the inspiration that ensued.

In the meantime, here’s what my trip so far has been like:

My nephew Maddock plays on the swing.

 

 

Blaise and Dutch resting under a tree. Georgia.

 

My sister has chickens and goats and dogs. Oh yea, and two kids and a husband. It’s a different life here from L.A., that’s for sure, but it’s so sweet. They have a huge skateboard ramp and lots of land. We sat outside today under a tree for hours and just talked. Blaise played with his iPad and Maddock played on the swing.

It was perfect.