In case you haven’t seen my million Facebook posts and tweets, here is the link for The Doctors. It is so fun and silly and I am truly proud. please share! Let’s get us on Ellen. Please everyone tweet Ellen #karaokeyoga and ask her to put it on!
In case you haven’t seen my million Facebook posts and tweets, here is the link for The Doctors. It is so fun and silly and I am truly proud. please share! Let’s get us on Ellen. Please everyone tweet Ellen #karaokeyoga and ask her to put it on!
What’s Your Miami?
Somewhere between Albuquerque and Flagstaff, headed back to Los Angeles. That’s where I am right now. I get my best writing done on airplanes. Flying back after a weekend of workshops in Miami. It was my first time in Miami, which seems slightly unbelievable being that I am a Jew from Jersey, a fact I attribute our moving to California and then back again like gypsies in search of sustainable weather or a father. Nonetheless, it was my first time and I felt more like I was visiting from some distant country (or Kansas) than L.A. How in awe I was at the balmy weather, at the sky, the view from my friend’s condo, water on all sides. The sky seemed lower, close enough to me that I could reach up and grab a fistful of air if I wanted to. The clouds with their secrets stuffed inside of them and if we waited long enough with our iPhone cameras and Instagrams we could catch the secrets exploding into a million particles of light, raindrops, streaks of purple and pink, golden ambers, all the things that make people click “like” or “share” on a photo.
The moodiness of the place felt like home to me. I recognized how easy it was to one moment be bright and yellow and the next, a misty grey where you couldn’t see the gaudy cruise ships or the lights any longer, just a fine haze with all its edges lost.
And it was hot. It was a whole new world for me, only having been to Florida one other time, last summer, on a road trip with my sister, her husband, their new puppy Timber, and my two nephews. My oldest nephew Blaise has a rare genetic disorder called Prader Will Syndrome and his doctor is in Gainesville at the Univeristy (people drive and fly from all over the world to see her.) We were taking a weekend mini-holiday at a small coastal town a couple hours away from the University called Flagler Beach before heading to Dr. Miller on the way back to Georgia where they live. I sat wedged in the back between Maddock (who hit me almost the whole time) and Blaise and Timber.
It was a long long ride.
The beach town had been cute. It was so different than California and I spent most of the weekend tickled by this difference. The water is so warm! So different than California! It’s so calm! It’s so humid! As if I hadn’t grown up in New Jersey and spent summers down the shore. As if I had never experienced this type of weather or the Atlantic Ocean.
Its easy to forget that our lives are not it. That it doesn’t stop and end with our town, our street, our weather, our children, our problems. I forgot that there was weather outside of California. I forgot that there was another ocean besides the Pacific. I forgot that palm trees actually grew places and weren’t simply placed there as an aesthetic gem. Miami is very different from that sleepy town last summer although I adored that sleepy town and the little local fish restaurant we went to where we ate off paper plates and drank beer. I was also with my nephews and I wouldn’t trade anything for Blaise saying Ocean, Jenny, ocean? And then sitting at the shoreline with him on my lap as he grips me for dear life with that combination of terror and delight children love to feel.
My Miami workshops at Green Monkey went really well.
It was a big step for me. Being flown to a place where I have no “following” per se, to do my thing.
What if no one came? and all the other usual fear based thoughts fought their way to the top of the food chain of my mind.
They came. They loved it.
The biggest deal for me really was the fact that Skye and Sommer Dyer came to my Friday night Karaoke Yoga workshop. They are 2 of the daughters of my beloved teacher, Dr. Wayne Dyer. (Sommer is the one who will be assisting me at my Maui retreat in February and if I can manifest Wayne coming over to talk to my group then I will have accomplished one of my greatest dreams.) Wayne truly changed my life and anyone who has spent any time with me, especially in my classes or workshops, knows how often I quote him and speak of him. I have become friends with his daughters and they drove 1.5 hours to come. It was a little unnerving at first because I quote him all the time so I felt nervous and self-conscious.
That lasted a few moments. Once I start, I get channeled in a way that I don’t pretend to understand and I forget all about who is in the room. My intention becomes clear. Skye is a beautiful singer (if you have ever heard Wayne speak or seen his PBS specials, you have heard her sing.) She sang for us in savasana and it was like one of those moments when you are at once outside of yourself and yet so utterly present at that it is almost unbearable, the surge of emotion a reminder that you are very much alive despite moments of depression or feeling lost or confused or any of the other ways in which we go slack. Its like the feeling you have when you get married, and, I am guessing, when you give birth. Is this my life? and Yes, this is my life! joining in such a way that time stops, your breath catches and you feel solid and essential to the world like soil air.
The workshop on Saturday was lovely as well. I felt really proud of myself. I have taught in Philly and NYC and NJ and sold the workshops out, but Miami? I had one friend there and no students or tribe. Yet, I did it.
I. Did. It.
And they showed up.
One woman, the beautiful Sue, flew from Michigan to take my workshops in Miami. That was a huge moment for me, to acknowledge that. She follows me on Facebook and reads my blog and from that she flew all the way to another state to attend my workshop. I am owning that. I think it can be too easy (for me at least) to own the things about me I don’t like or what I have done “wrong” but when it comes to just being with the fact that someone is moved by me, or thanking me, well, that is as difficult as telling someone just who you are and having them look in your eyes for 3 minutes without speaking or moving. And yes, we do that in my workshops.
So I am looking in the proverbial eye of it all and accepting it. Owning it. Taking responsibility for what I did. This is not a random thing. There is a cause and effect.
I manifested this. By imagining it first and then working toward it, all the while staying true to myself and being authentic.
I wonder how often we don’t realize our own gifts? Or else we do, and we feel we somehow don’t deserve to own them?
I am on a plane heading back and feeling good. I will be back. I feel calmer than I have in a while, less anxiety, more present. Perhaps it has to do with all the travel I had over the last few months and I can sit here and say Wow from 30,000 feet at all I have accomplished. Perhaps because there is no wi-fi in flight. Perhaps its hormones? Who knows? Who cares.
It is terrifying going into the unknown. It really is. I get it.
I was told before going how Miami loved its physical practice, its handstands, its power yoga. Its not that I don’t do that stuff, I do. I slip it in, I use it as a causeway. But it is not what you think of when you think of a Jen Pastiloff class or workshop.
I went anyway and I stayed true to who I was and what I do and they came and they loved it. If I had let my fear sway me I would have cancelled, I would have shirked, I would have changed myself to fit in with the status quo.
I leave you with this as we are about to land and I have to shut my computer:
Where are you playing small?
What is your “Miami?”
What are you scared of?
What are you willing to do anyway?
Where can you go that you have never been before, both literally and in your imagination?
Here are 3 emails I got today from 3 people who attended my Miami workshops:
Dear Jen, I don’t think I can thank you enough Jen. I would have never thought taking a karaoke yoga workshop could have changed my life that way that it is. I was very hesitant to sign up for the workshop. It was something that initially I didn’t think I would have enjoyed it as much as I did. I have so many things to be proud of but always searched for the approval of the people that wronged me and never believed in me. I always belittled my accomplishments. I always made excuses. Now I am finally starting to feel free from them. I value myself so much more than I did before I walked into that workshop on Friday. I put on my post-it: LOVE. When I first put it on my post-it I was thinking of manifesting an awesome man to love and love me back. I had it all wrong though. I want to manifest love for myself. Thank you for inspiring me to be my true self without the fear. I wish you nothing but the best! You are a God send and it has been such a blessing for me to have had the chance to meet such an amazing person!
Hey Jen ~THANK YOU for yesterday. It was beyond what I thought it would be and it was life transforming, truly. I feel like I woke up today with fresh eyes and a better outlook. It was astonishing to me how much you and the workshop resonated with me. I too have battled depression, its always nice to know I’m not alone. I too ALWAYS say “i’m tired.” Not today! I have literally talked myself out of it, manifesting an abundance of energy 🙂 Yesterday, I posted on the Green Monkey wall ‘happiness.’ Thats what I am manifesting. And our ‘HI-YA!!!’ bit, I was kicking the shit out of fear! Ha! Thank you!
Hi Jennifer, I cannot stop thinking about the workshop you did on Saturday at Green Monkey. It’s amazing how we weren’t supposed to participate but by a twist of fate were able to. There are no coincidences in life. I loved every minute of it. When we were doing the forgiveness/breathing exercise you came up to me and gently placed your hand on my back as if to say “it’s ok to let go”.
I was in the process of forgiving myself for not being the person who I thought I would be in my life right now.
This is so cool. I have been featured in Spirituality & Health Magazine this month! Click here.
I also picked up Origin Magazine for September where I have a whole layout on manifesting on page 50. It is a beautiful magazine. Please check it out. You can get it at Whole Foods, among other places!
***Philly Fri. Sep 7th workshop at Dhyana Yoga Old City has 2 spots left
Sunday Manifestation Workshop at Pure Yoga East has only 2 spots left so act fast! Click here.
To book me for a workshop or Karaoke Yoga please email Barbara@jenniferpastiloff.com
I know what joy feels like.
I do, I really do.
I too recall what it’s like to not recall it all.
I know what it’s like to put it off, to work & work & try to fight & work some more towards that which one hopes will matter, & to take the little free things in life to be all one’s allowed to enjoy, & in between those little things, the smile here & there or moments shared with a stranger you hope will become a friend one day.
But joy itself, that’s an entirely different thing, is it not, than hopes & wishes & dreams?
It’s a feeling from dawn to dusk & throughout the night, that the smile you see in the morning comes from that part of you so thoroughly deep inside your core that nothing can wipe it away.
You sing & dance & move a little differently everywhere you go & give a little extra shake to everything you do & say.
Yes, yes, joy is delicious, the best of all the things we feel me thinks; it’s not something one forgets or thinks might be true, it’s the most real thing of anything that’s real with a me or a you.
It is, however, something that one can lose sometimes, for one reason or another. I wonder now & again if that feeling will ever come back or if it’s gone now, forever
There are those who say they know for sure you cannot get joy from another. But I do not know that nor do i agree at all. Else how is it that when we choose to give joy to someone else, we see their entire being light up & then we feel right off our smile began to glow inside them first? And then we hear the voice of real happiness float across their curled up smiling lips?
So joy then it seems to me is something we give each other. It’s the one gift that must be given & is always free & never taken.
It lasts & lasts forever in our memory. It permeates all around us & percolates back & forth in a joyful exchange that at times has ups & downs … until that special moment in time that’s spent with more-than-a-special friend who takes us by surprise. And that is when, there & then, one finds out joy is always & only here & now & it’s full of grace & gratitude, all the time.
So that’s what I think about where joy comes from, in connections of all sorts to be sure, but especially when it’s with that special one, true, who takes us & makes us sing & dance & shows us we’re their special one too, the one that gives us joy all day & night no matter where we’re at, who never allows us to feel blue. The special deep core hum, infinite ohmmmmm……, vibrating, resonating friend, who’s willing to shout: oi, oi, oi-! hey! I fucking love you~!
To book a photography session with James please email: James Knowles <email@example.com>
Here is a sampling. It’s a video he put together from his photos for me from last week’s karaoke yoga class (which was shot at Yogis Anonymous for the British tv show Lorraine and starred Rod Stewart’s wife. Thus the Rod song!)
It brought me so much joy I had to share with you!
Please check out my latest on MindBodyGreen to read the rest and leave your comment there. I would love to hear what is on your own personal joy list.
Love you all, jen
So I woke up this morning to the news that the Associated Press® had picked up the story of my Karaoke Yoga® and it has officially gone global.
From Singapore, to India, to the NY Daily News to Yoga Journal to The LAist.com.
I only write of this to remind you of what is possible. Under 3 years ago I was waitressing still and had been at the same cafe for 13.5 years.
I said I wanted to be a global force and today I can say I am.
#Manifest baby manifest!
I leave tomorrow for my Tuscany retreat which is full to the brim but I will be blogging and posting so stay tuned.
Here are a few of the links from today’s #karaokeyoga fest!
Being awesome is the best revenge.
Karen Salmansohn said that. Now do you see why we are such soul sisters?
Go be awesome.
Go shine like you do when you belly laugh at a joke that was told just for you. Go shine like you do when you find something you wrote 10 years ago and realize that it’s really, really good. Go shine like you do when you are doing something you love and you forget all sense of time and space and dinner. Go shine like you do when you look in the mirror and notice for the first time in a long while that you are beautiful. There, just like that, in the bathroom light with the morning streaming in and the deep knowing in your place that knows things that: Today will be awesome.
So go be that.
I love being a Wellness Expert on MindBodyGreen.
Please click here to read my latest about how yoga helped me heal from my eating disorder. This is an important post for me and I would love to hear your thoughts. Please share with anyone you who who is suffering or who needs hope.
Here’s an excerpt:
For many years I hated myself. It started much earlier in my life, but, once I was 17 and I discovered the addictive drug of anorexia, my self-hatred grew and flourished like a proud peacock. It was my badge of honor.
I couldn’t be with people. Someone would be talking to be and all I would be thinking about is: What did I eat today? What did I eat that? Why am I so fat? How will I burn it off? Maybe if I exercise for 4 hours I will be ok. I am a monster. I will not eat at all the rest of the week to make up for what I ate today.
Thank you ABC News for coming and filming my Karaoke Yoga® class today at Equinox. And thank you all of you who drove so far. I am so blessed. I love my tribe. Most of all thank you to DJ Gina Mooring of Sing Out Loud Karaoke. She rocks! Stay tuned as we take this national. Ellen Degeneres here we come……
Since today is Karaoke Yoga and ABC News is coming to film it at the Pasadena Equinox, I thought this message would be most fitting:
What the what?
Well, let me tell you a little about this sweet little dream of mine…. About what I manifested…. After 13 years of working in the same restaurant in Los Angeles and being very depressed and anorexic.
We sing in my classes.
We sing a lot.
We sometimes have dance parties.
We a lot of times have dance parties.
We do all the things I deprived myself of for years.
I got wind that my friend Aimee Nicotera was doing a “Sing & Cycle” class (karaoke with spinning) and I got a little interested.
We were having a coffee and I flat out asked: Can we do karaoke with my yoga class?
She flat out said: Done.
This is why I love her.
An idea was born.
It couldn’t be done without DJ Gina Mooring of Sing Out Loud Karaoke, of course. I will never do it without this rockstar. She is the butter to my bread. She is the glass to my wine.
Good Morning America was looking for a way to feature me and heard of this karaoke yoga and decided to fly out from NYC to film it. It aired the day after Christmas. A true dream come true. It was on my vision board.
Since then, I have been in countless magazines, both foreign and domestic for karaoke yoga and now ABC is coming back to film us June 20 at The Pasadena Equinox. 10:45 am for those in L.A.
So what is it?
It is, in a word: JOY.
It is food for your soul.
It is yoga without taking yourself too seriously.
It is singing your heart out and laughing and dancing and balancing and sweating and letting go of all your fears.
It is connecting and letting your inner light shine.
It is finding your inner rockstar.
It is being silly and not giving a damn.
It is NOT about alignment.
It is NOT about being perfect.
It is NOT about singing well.
It is about being the most you.
It is about being authentic.
It is connecting some of the greatest pleasures I know of in life: dancing, singing, yoga, connecting and good old fashioned rock’n’roll.
Let me know if you want to be a part of the ABC filming at Equinox in Pasadena on June 20th at 10:45 am. It will air June 26th.
You may never be the same.
For more info on Karaoke Yoga® or my other classes please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I am so excited. Tomorrow I leave for my 7th Ojai retreat in 2 years.
If you do not know who he is, boy are you in for a treat! His q&a will be up next week.
I will blog from retreat about all the magic that will be going down.
PS, apparently I have a big spread in MAX Sports & Fitness Magazine. However, it is was April’s issue. It’s now May. Oye, does anyone have a copy? Here is link online in the meantime. I thought it was some cool manifesting. (Page 33 and 34)
Welcome to The Manifestation Q&A Series.
I am Jennifer Pastiloff and this series is designed to introduce the world to someone I find incredible. Someone who is manifesting their dreams on a daily basis.
Someone like Cameron Mathison.
I first met Cameron in December when Good Morning America came to film my Karaoke Yoga class at Equinox. I knew I liked him right away when I offered to give him one of my Manifestation t-shirts which I sell to raise money for Prader Willi Research (you can see him wearing it in the segment) and he insisted to pay for it. I told him it was a gift and he refused. I knew right then and there, before we even began to film, just what kind of guy this handsome man was. He may be beautiful on the outside (and he is folks, he is) but, I can assure you, he is way more beautiful on the inside. He fished in his pockets and found $25 and made me take it knowing where the money was going. (My nephew has a rare genetic disorder called Prader Willi Syndrome.)
The whole room was meant to sing for the duration of the class but right away I asked Cameron if he wanted to do a duet with me. (Mind you, I cannot sing at all.) For me, it was a way to get way out of my comfort zone. He said no.
Sweetly, of course.
He then turned around and said he would sing the duet. He too would conquer his fear.
It was at that moment I knew that I really loved this guy.
Needless to say, we sang a duet of “I Got You Babe” and it was one of the best moments of my entire life. My cheeks hurt from laughing. I had never felt such pure joy and such freedom. I also knew I had made a new friend.
Cameron is inspiring on so many levels. He travels nonstop for Good Morning America, and yet and still, is an incredibly devoted father and husband. He practices and teaches meditation and is committed to serving others in a way I haven’t seen in many actors. He truly makes me want to be a better person, and that folks, is the kind of friend I want.
I might also add that one of the things that I find most inspiring and refreshing about him is his devotion to meditation. We can all learn from him. (Or, at least I can, with my monkey mind.) Below he says: Through meditation I have recognized that all the happiness there is in the world comes from wishing others to be happy.
Does it get any better than that?
His answers below are honest and funny, inspiring and authentic. Cameron Mathison is someone you should know.
Below he says “I truly feel that my success has been largely because I try to be appreciative, kind and I ALWAYS try to enjoy what I do.” I can safely say that Cameron is waling the talk. That is exactly how he comes across.
It is my greatest delight to share his delicious gems with you today.
Jennifer Pastiloff: What are you most proud to have manifested in your life?
Cameron Mathison: A family so full of love. We are so incredibly close it’s amazing. Just this morning my 5 yr old daughter said she wanted to marry her brother Lucas. Then she added… And Daddy! Just lots of love.
We are a family that tries to emphasize Love and kindness. We take the kids to a Sunday morning “Dharma for Kids” class where there is a little meditation and a teaching on Love, patience, generosity, compassion etc… So sweet.
We really feel grateful for what we have and continue to try and bring meaning into our lives by being a benefit to others. I think I’m most proud to have manifested that. A family that seems to be on a spiritual path together:)
Jennifer Pastiloff: A mantra I love by is “I do what I love and I love what I do.” You seem to embody this as well. Have you always lived this way?
Cameron Mathison: I truly feel that my success has been largely because I try to be appreciative, kind and I ALWAYS try to enjoy what I do. Even during the most challenging times in my career I really try to smile and have a positive attitude. I also try not to grasp too much at my job being a true source of happiness. I enjoy it and I am so grateful, but it’s not how I define myself. I wasn’t always that way, which was difficult when things wouldn’t go they way I had hoped. I try to keep a much healthier perspective regarding work which allows me to enjoy it even more.
Jennifer Pastiloff: I know you are pretty serious about your meditation practice. Can you share with us a bit about that and about your teaching?
Cameron Mathison: Meditation has changed my life. It has shown me how our experience of our world is totally dependent on our mind. Studying meditation makes clear nothing is fixed and is completely fluid and changeable. Engrained habits of body, speech and mind can be completely reversed through a meditation practice and in doing so attaining a much more stable and genuine happiness. Nobody is inherently angry or bad, nobody is forever one way or the other. Meditation is an extremely powerful tool to make changes in our life that lead to deep happiness regardless of our external conditions… And in doing so, we become such a benefit to those around us. All based on the fact that true happiness comes from inner peace. We know this from experience… Sometimes when things are going well in our lives we can still get upset or depressed if our mind is not peaceful. In the same way, when things externally may be falling apart, we can still be peaceful and happy if our mind is peaceful. Meditation is a phenominal tool to develop lasting peace and happiness.
Yes, I occasionally get the opportunity to teach classes at Kadampa Meditation Center. Its an extremely meaningful way for me to volunteer my time:)
Jennifer Pastiloff: Who/what inspires you the most?
Cameron Mathison: People that devote their life to benefitting others. Massively inspiring to me. Something that I continually try to improve… My ability to benefit others.
Jennifer Pastiloff: What is the greatest lesson you have learned from your children?
Cameron Mathison: That I have a lot of work to do on myself! They are the ultimate teachers. I am a very involved dad and I never want to stop trying to improve myself for their benefit and the benfit of others. My kids can show me the areas I still need work on:)
I feel like our time here on this earth is very short in the grand scheme of things and I want to use my time here to become the best person I can be.
My kids show me that I can become more patient (especially at homework time!), a better listener (when I have tons of other things to attend to). They have shown me how deeply it is possible to love… How wonderful if we could expand that love to others!
Jennifer Pastiloff: From being an actor?
Cameron Mathison: Hmmm…. What have I learned from being an actor? To be less self aware. I think in order to be a good actor on some level you have to not worry about what others are thinking. To truly lose yourself in a role. I think before I began acting I was too concerned about what others thought of me. Through my career I was able to start letting that go.
Jennifer Pastiloff: From being married?
Cameron Mathison: That it takes work. That life becomes so meaningful when we work and try to improve ourselves. That taking responsibilty for OUR part in any conflict is so incredibly important. That blaming is toxic. It’s through my wife that I found the meditation practice I study so there’s no way to express my gratitude. The love and connection we have is beyond what I thought was possible, and it’s largely due to being on a spiritual journey together.
Jennifer Pastiloff: From your meditation practice?
Cameron Mathison: That true, real happiness comes from within… From inner peace. In general we try to solve our problems externally. Fixing a situation “out there”. New partner, new job, new house, change this or that. Arranging our externals so we can be “happy”. That happiness generally is only temporary. By training in meditation we can be happy “no matter what”. It’s so liberating. Of course we still try to fix a diff situation when we can, but meditation has taught me that the real the real source of happiness is a peaceful mind.
Jennifer Pastiloff: From teaching meditation?
Cameron Mathison: That I have so much to learn. Sometimes its hard to express my experience with meditation to a class. I guess because my “self” still gets in the way… Can’t wait to get out of my own way and simply just try to benefit others. It’s such powerful stuff. Luckily I have an incredible teacher so I just have to follow his lead.
The bulk of the classes are guided meditations with some Buddhist philosophy and teachings in Between.
Of course by having the opportunity to teach, I end up learning SO much about what I’m teaching.
Jennifer Pastiloff: From singing a duet with me on Good Morning America?
Cameron Mathison: That I conquered yet another fear!!! You helped me with that! Never thought I would do that.
Cameron Mathison: What has been your favorite part about being a correspondent for GMA?
Cameron Mathison: GMA has given me the chance to literally learn and expand a whole new career. They have been beyond kind to me. I love my job with them. Not only because I get to do all sorts of fun segments, but because they are like an extended family. Beyond grateful for the continued opportunities there.
Jennifer Pastiloff: Who has been your greatest teacher?
Cameron Mathison: That’s an easy one: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. He is an internationally known meditation master and phenomenal teacher and author that is guiding so many people to find true lasting happiness:)
Jennifer Pastiloff: If you weren’t acting and being a host what would you be doing?
Cameron Mathison: Hmmmm… I used to say a ski instructor in the winter and work at a golf club in the summer. I’m not sure anymore. Maybe a full time volunteer:)
Jennifer Pastiloff: What are some words you live by?
Happiness comes from inner peace.
We can do anything we put our minds to. The mind is infinitely powerful.
Jennifer Pastiloff: Let’s talk Twitter. I love what you tweet. How has social media played a part in your life and your career?
Cameron Mathison: Thanks for saying that. I try to balance the everyday “what I’m working on” stuff, with some meaningful spiritual tweets. I find it very hard to balance it. I actually don’t think I am very good at it! I’m trying!
I’m not sure how social media has affected my life and career. Well, I do host an online show as well part owner of the app FRIENDTHEM, so I guess it has affected my career! Both opportunities have been absolutely great. Very grateful.
I think we have to be a little careful because It sure can be a big distraction if you let it. There is pressure out there to tweet about different jobs etc… But I really like to use it as a way to put out some good energy:)
Jennifer Pastiloff: What was it like being on the red carpet at this year’s Oscars?
Cameron Mathison: So cool! I was on the red carpet, then back stage during the show for a live web cast, and then GMA the next morning. What an experience.
Jennifer Pastiloff: My sister Rachel, whose one son has Prader Willi Syndrome asked me to ask you the following: How does one continue to manifest your dreams while being a parent? I watch you travel so much and I am fascinated by how you juggle it all.
Cameron Mathison: Great question. The answer is I pretty much cut out everything else in my life! Until I find a bit more balance with work, the only things I’m doing these days are work and be a dad (all while integrating my spiritual practice). I literally schedule my flights and trips around pick up and drop offs at school:)
Jennifer Pastiloff: Do you practice yoga?
Cameron Mathison: No:(
I certainly have the wish! Vanessa and i even had someone come to our house to try and do private classes so we could fit it into out life. Didn’t last:(
Help me Jen!!!
Jennifer Pastiloff: Gratitude is the greatest force In my life. Most of my classes are set to this theme. If you could say thank you right now, who would it be to?
Cameron Mathison: I literally don’t have the time to write the list it would be so long!
The obvious ones are my parents, wife, kids and My spiritual teacher Geshe Kelsang Gyatso.
I really try to be grateful all the time.. To everyone. I train in it actually. It’s such a powerful mind. Even the people that might seem unkind can be seen as people to be grateful to. For helping me train in patience, compassion, love etc…
Jennifer Pastiloff: When is the last time you have laughed at yourself?
Cameron Mathison: All the time! I think laughing at oneself is a great way not to take ourselves too seriously.
(Note from Jen: My most famous rule in my yoga class, as Cameron very well knows, is if you fall you MUST laugh.)
Jennifer Pastiloff: What is your favorite memory?
Cameron Mathison: I’m not sure if these are my actual top 3… But they are up there:)
1) The birth of both my kids. In an instant when Lucas and Leila came into the world my life had greater meaning. It’s very hard to explain, but it was like my first real experience of how blissful it is to be more concerned about others than myself. Of course I thought about others before that, but this was on such a deeper level.
2) A sort of meditation retreat I did in Brazil. My spiritual teacher was giving teachings at this remote temple in Brazil and I flew down to listen and meditate. There was no cell service or emails or any distractions like that. All I did was listen to beautiful teachings, meditate and volunteer. I remember noticing such freedom from any negativity in my mind. Totally free from anger, attachment, craving, jealousy or any agitation. Just a truly peaceful mind.
It made me realize the potential we all have.
3) Our honeymoon. It was 7 years late so I thought I had to go all out! We were in the Maldives and it ws the first time we had been away from the kids like that. Really spectacular time together. I will never forget it.
Jennifer Pastiloff: How has meditation changed your life?
Cameron Mathison: I’ll try to keep this short because I could talk about it all day:)
Meditation has had the single biggest positive impact on my life.
We live in a world where it seems we are encouraged to do everything possible to distract ourselves. Internet, tv, movies, video games, cell phones, ipads, etc… Its so rare to take an opportunity to look “inward”.
I couldn’t even go across town in a cab in NYC without plugging into my iPod, or getting on my cell phone. Literally I panicked when I was somewhere alone and couldn’t “tune out” through distractions. I had literally never been alone with my own mind in a still and peaceful way. Whenever problems arose I would just try to adjust “externals” to fix them. I would also try to numb out through distractions and objects of attachment. That would work for a little while but it never lasted.
Meditation changed all of that.
When faced with adversity I learned first to look inward to solve the problem. Of course I still try to adjust situations externally if I can, but the key is to do it with a calm and peaceful mind.
My meditation practice has brought inconceivable meaning to my life.
I have learned to watch my mind and see what thoughts are beneficial and lead to real happiness, and which thoughts are deceptive and lead to agitation and suffering.
I have learned that if I change my mind, I change my perception of the world.
I have learned how much more of a benefit I can be to others by watching and training in virtuous states of mind.
Through meditation I have recognized that all the happiness there is in the world comes from wishing others to be happy.
I should point out that we don’t need to be sitting in formal meditation to meditate. We can do it anytime in anyplace! Some of my best insights come to me meditating in a car, walking, or on a plane:)
Jennifer Pastiloff: What’s next for you?
Cameron Mathison: Wish I knew. So much change in my life lately. It’s been a great opportunity to practice acceptance and patience. Whatever is coming my way I hope I handle it with a happy mind:)
Cameron on Dancing With The Stars:
Clip of the class singing “Let It Be” during Karaoke Yoga:
Jennifer Pastiloff is currently a writer for Positively Positive and is writing her first book. She travels the world leading Manifestation Retreats and workshops. When she is not traveling, she is based in Los Angeles where she leads public and private yoga classes. To book a workshop with Jen or to buy a Manifestation t-shirt to raise money for Prader Willi Syndrome please visit jenniferpastiloff.com