…or Why I Love intenSati
In the decade during which I was a dedicated Weight Watcher I never realized what I really wanted. I thought a number on the scale would finally make me feel free. Little did I know…kind of like Dorothy…the power to be free was with me all along. I only needed to choose to see it.
When I decided never to go back to my weekly weight management meeting I still hadn’t realized that. But that day, after a decade of slavery to the number that left me once again weeping in front the receptionist, I figured there had to be a better way.
I stopped going to meetings and put my scale in the closet. I started going to the gym more – and not because it earned me extra points. I began to pick up habits that I actually loved, instead of feeling obligated to scrutinize everything I did with a mind to whether it would be in support of my weight loss goals. Weight Watchers helped me when I needed it, but it was time to let go. It was time to do it my way.
One day, I wandered into Erika Shannon’s Sunday morning intenSati class. The class, designed by Patricia Moreno, contained moves I recognized from kickboxing, dance, aerobics and yoga. With each movement, we were invited to repeat affirmations to prescribe how we wanted to think, feel and act.
For a long time I remembered that first series that I learned; the first affirming poem that stole my heart. With six-plus years of series running through my mind, I just can’t access it anymore. But I do remember being instructed to focus on what I wanted. And as I got deeper into the work thanks to teachers like Erika, and Patricia, and others from outside the immediate intenSati world, I realized that didn’t mean “I want to lose three pounds.” And it didn’t mean, “I want to fall in love.” It meant, “What do you want to feel?”
I wanted all the things I wanted because of how I thought they would make me feel. I wanted to feel free. I wanted to let go of the self-scrutiny. I wanted to feel unfettered. I wanted peace of mind. Once I realized, through intenSati, that I could choose to feel the way I wanted to feel right now, something shifted. And when it became apparent that making that choice actually led to the appearance of the things I really wanted in some form or another, it was a revelation. Focusing on the feeling allowed events, people, and things that supported that feeling to show up.
Once I stopped cursing my body for not being able to let go of the three pounds it insisted it needed, it finally let go. I gave up the fight and my body changed. Things started appearing differently to me. Once I stopped pressuring myself to go on countless online dates, and decided to just be present and free and have fun on the date I had on one particular night, I met my husband.
Four years after taking my first class I trained to lead intenSati classes. I’ve done a lot of teaching around the city, but I have never been as excited as I am now to lead a class inspired by the idea of freedom. On May 16, 2012, at 7pm at 440 Studio, 440 Lafayette Street at Astor Place, I am leading what will be a rockin’ intenSati class followed by a dance-like-no-one’s-watching-dance party. After I found myself bouncing around my apartment to Lady Gaga, I knew I needed to plan something to share that kind of liberation with you all. Cast off the shackles of yesterday. And join me in a celebration of our freedom to love our lives and be ourselves, right now.