Browsing Tag


And So It Is, Forgiveness, Inspiration, Owning It!

How Kindness Works.

February 8, 2013

I got in a car accident the other night.

I was driving to teach my yoga class and just short of making it there I saw a car in front of me stopped. I stopped in time so as not to hit the car. The car in back of me however, slammed into me. The first word out of my mouth was Fuck and then my body shook.. My phone flew under the brake and the car got stuck in reverse and started rolling backward and tapped the car that had smashed into me and then a pretty woman cop was at my passenger window and mouthing something as she mimed a motion that probably said Roll down your window or Calm down. I shook harder. She came over to my side and got in (I must have gotten out at some point) and she got the car unstuck and moved it to the side of the road and the other drivers and I congregated on the curb. I was trying to call Equinox to tell them I had been in an accident and couldn’t get there to teach my yoga class but the guy cop was yelling at me to get off my phone and that he had been doing this too long or something like that. I couldn’t hear. I could hear but I couldn’t listen rather. I was gone. Somewhere else.

When she slammed into me maybe I died or maybe I floated away but when the cop said that no one was injured so he wouldn’t take a police report but that we had to get each other’s information I just nodded Uh-huh and shook. I was the only one panicking. And I kept saying I am sorry because we had all been in an accident and wasn’t that the polite thing to do? No one else said I am sorry so when I came home and told my husband I started to obsess that once again I had screwed up. I had opened my big mouth and because of being a people pleaser I was going to be at fault. I was going to jail. I was wrong. I messed up. Someone crashes into me and I apologize?

I haven’t been able to get out of bed for two days. I was depressed and my back hurt terribly from the impact. I was feeling sorry for myself and vulnerable and terrified to drive. Something this small rocked me so hard I thought. What exactly am I made of?

Why did I apologize? Apologizing denotes guilt. I was the only one that said I am sorry. I also noted that night the irony that I was the yoga teacher and the most freaked out. They were both so calm as if they’d had many car accidents and this was just another rung on the bedpost. The girl who hit me, her hood was smashed badly, and yet she seemed bored and un-phased. Me? I drifted into oblivion when she crashed into me and headed straight for my bed where I have yet to emerge.

It takes such little to shake me. My iPad gets lost or stolen (I will never know) and I have an accident and poof! I am bed-ridden, lost, scared of my shadow as well as the rain and the cars on the road and the idea of waking up in the morning, of being up with the lark.

While I was lying in bed yesterday and feeling this overwhelming sense of what’s it all for anyway? I posted on my Facebook the following question:

What is the kindest thing anyone has ever done for you?

I don’t know why I asked it. I was in a foul people-hating mood. Maybe that is precisely why I asked it. Maybe I needed a reminder of kindness.

So I am laying in bed and the heat is blasting even though it wasn’t cold and I live in Southern California, and I am sweating and freezing and I start to cry reading the responses from my Tribe on Facebook.

Here’s one:

Nicole Markardt I was in a horrible car accident when I was 18. My back broke in 2 places, lying on a beach after the car rolled off of a bridge. A man ran through traffic… ran down rocks to the beach and back into traffic to flag down anyone that could call an ambulance ( pre cell phone). He gave me CPR. He even brought me flowers in the hospital. His name was Gabriel. Like the archangel. He cried when he saw I survived. I believe in the kindness of strangers.

I wanted to believe in the kindness of people again. Someone used my iPad on Monday so it obviously wasn’t coming back. Someone crashed into me and whether it was an accident or not did not say I am sorry. So many crap things happening and if I keep looking I will keep finding them. 

We find what we look for.

I broke into my ex-boyfriend’s apartment once. I used a credit card to unlock his door and let myself in.

He forgave me eventually. We had a big fight and he called me crazy and told me to get out but, eventually, we made up and went on to have about 2 years of more of the same, minus the “breaking in” with the credit card.

I didn’t think of it as breaking in at the time. He’d never use keys to let himself in his own apartment. We would come back to his place and he would slide a credit card through the space between the doorjamb and the door and voila! The door would open. It made him proud how easy it would be to rob his place. 

I had never thought of it as breaking in until he said that. I simply thought I was being cute. How could it be breaking in when the credit card was the way we always got in the door? The credit car was the key!

Except I knew. I knew he would be upset. I knew he never wanted me to stop by un-announced or call him my “boyfriend” but I did it anyway. I had such an adrenaline rush as I was sliding that card through the crack in the door that my whole body shook  like it did in the accident but worse.

Find what you are looking for.

I knew I could possibly catch him cheating. He was in bed though when I slid the credit car through the door and walked in. Asleep. He jumped up when I crawled in next to him and called me crazy and said that I broke in and that I needed to get out.

Look for someone to disappoint you hard enough and they will.

On some level, I knew he would react exactly how he did, but, since there are always two of us (at least) I ignored Voice #1 and went instead with Voice #2 in hopes I would catch him fucking someone else or doing something awful and I could say Uh-huh! People suck. You let me down. I knew it! People will fail you. See?

But he was asleep and he kicked me out and eventually we made up and went on to have a disastrous coupe of years but I think back on how I really let him down. His rules may have stank and he may have been a jerk but who was I to let myself in when he never gave me that permission, no matter how cute I thought it would be?

I wanted to fail.

I wanted to prove that people suck. Even me.

Yesterday I laid in my bed and posted that question on Facebook because I needed a reminder of the good in the world.

That’s why I said I was sorry when I was in the middle of the accident sandwich. I wasn’t at fault but I thought it was the human thing to do. The kind thing to do.

I don’t know. I don’t know if kindness counts much in the legal system but I stand by why I said it. Not all people suck. Some do. Can I say that as a yoga teacher? ( I just did, so I guess so.)

I don’t suck. 

I am kind. 

And there is a lot of kindness around us. It moved me to read about the things people posted on my Facebook and it reminded me how all we have to do is hear about it, read about, witness it, and kindness will live inside us. We don’t even have to be the one the kindness is meant for specifically, and yet and still, it will live somewhere within us as if it was meant for us specifically. That’s how it works.


Free Stuff, Inspiration, Yoga, Yoga Classes

The Time to Be Holy is Now.

December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve morning. I taught my last yoga class this morning before I head off to London.

Class this morning was holy. It was sacred and I don’t care if you are religious or not, it was a moment in time where connection was possible, and not only possible, but rampant.

Where love was there in the room and no one questioned its presence, no one doubted it’s intention or wondered Will you stay?

The class moved like we’d rehearsed (we hadn’t.)

That’s what happens when you allow things to flow, you find yourself all of a sudden in synch with your own life. You find that everything is easy and it may not always be easy but right now in this moment, it is easy. And that feels holy and right.

The class this morning was quiet and powerful and full of laughter and I thought what a gift, what a gift, over and over as I led them through the postures. What a gift I get to meet these people on this day. On any day! What are the odds that with all the billions of people we get to meet? To move together? What are the odds? Now, that’s holy.

I asked the room: “How many of you have had moments of insurmountable joy this past year?”

Many raised their hands.

And then, “How many of you have had unspeakable heartbreak and/or loss in 2012?”

Many raised their hands.

“You see” I said “They always go hand in hand.”

There was a 50/50 spilt right down the center. Perhaps it veered more towards the joy. Perhaps it veered more towards the pain. Either way.

How holy that we meet on this day. That we meet at all. That we connect. That we can say I stood here. I prayed here.

That we can say I was here at all.

What a gift that I was able to be part of that class this morning.

 The time is now.

Move forward from where you are. Take with you the little bits of happiness and the shards of hurt too, if you want, if you want to remember all of it, but move forward, because the time is now.

The time is now to turn inward and see what I see. (You won’t see it exactly the way I see it. That’s okay. It’s not really meant for you that way. Your beauty is for you to give away) but what I am saying is that you must know it’s there.

You must trust its there. You must put on your coat and walk into the light or into the snow or into the house with the fireplace and a glass of wine waiting there and you must know that the time is now to leave the darkness behind.

It ebbs and flows. You can count on that. There might be moments or years where you feel the darkness descending and, when that happens, remember what it felt like to be connected. To be light. To be holy. Or call me. I will remind you. (I hope you extend the same for me because Lord knows, I ebb and flow the hell out of life.)

Remember being in synch. What that felt like. Remember what it felt like to move in time with someone next to you, someone who maybe you’ve never met and will never meet again and if only for that brief moment who you moved with, like you were attached. Like you were connected.

It’s always there even when we forget that it is.

That is why I love yoga. That is why I will never ever stop teaching yoga even as I pair down my schedule and teach less.

The time is now to be holy.

Can you feel it? Can you hear it cracking, that shell around your heart? White as moon and made of the bones of your past? The bones may lay in a heap, and, if you let them, they will slowly rise and trail off for some dinner. They will leave you alone.

They won’t forget you nor you them, but they will soften the grip they have on you. Their fists opening, your heart fluttering away.

Now is the time.

Happy Holidays. I love you guys. Thank you. Stay connected. Stay open. Loosen your grip.

(Enjoy 10 free days of online yoga classes with me by using code jenp10 at

Thanks Jenni Young as usual.

Thanks Jenni Young as usual.

healing, love

What Love Does.

December 11, 2012

Have you ever felt it? That Don’t leave me pang right square in your chest, in that place you didn’t know existed until you did?

In yoga class, someone is pressing your shoulders down in savasana (final resting pose) or rubbing your back as you are in child’s pose, and you never want them to leave, as if a possibility existed in some corner of the world where you two could exist like that: as giver and receiver in some dark space? How it almost feels like the first time you have ever been touched in your whole life. You feel that safe.

That wide open.

This is why most of us love being touched in yoga, especially during passive poses, when we are nothing but a receiver, a net for love. When else do we let our guards down that much? I know I don’t.

Yesterday I got a massage as treated to me by my friend Katie for my upcoming birthday tomorrow. This massage was much needed because apparently a train had been running through my head and had crashed behind my eyes, leaving me a broken heap of steel and muscle. I had subbed out my 4 pm yoga class and couldn’t leave the dark of my room until the massage appointment.

There’s a point early on in a massage where I start to obsess about when it is going to end. As early as two minutes into it. This won’t last long enough. Same when someone touches me in a yoga class, my own shoulders pinned down like some kind of stuck thing and I think I know you are going to leave. You are going to get up and go and my shoulders are going to fly back up and I might even fly away with nothing holding me in place any longer. 

Last night, about three minutes into my massage, I felt myself drifting and then catching myself right on the cliff of pleasure wondering how much time was left. Push me off the cliff, dammit! 

How can I worry about when something is going to end when it is barely just beginning?

In Bali at one point very early in our trip, I looked around at the pool and our house in Ubud with all the little flowers on the towels and the fried cassava in bowls by our feet and I’d said I am sure going to miss this place. My husband, as if I was insane: We haven’t even left yet! It was as if it was the first time I’d noticed that fact. Oh, we haven’t left yet, have we? We are still here. We are still safe. So I’d eaten a “cassava chip” which was oddly like a “potato chip” and sat back to enjoy the way it felt, the salt and the greasy crunch and the way it made me thirsty and I wondered if everyone worried that there wasn’t enough.

Am I terrified of being comfortable? Because it won’t last?

Nothing lasts. Not forever anyway. When a teacher comes over to me and that end of a yoga class to press down on my shoulders or rub my head I always ask can you stay there? sometimes out loud, sometimes not.

That is the crux of it all, isn’t it? Can you stay there? can you not go? Can you make me feel safe?

I want to make people feel that way and I think that I do, at least in some small way, that blanket of limbs and touch and non-judgement and fireplaces and glasses of wine and unparalleled listening skills and here I have you. I am not going anywhere.

I used to think I wanted things to last forever.

I remember my first boyfriend Danny, my first serious love and one of my only serious loves, and how he would call me from his dorm room in Boston and how I would lie in my bunk bed at NYU and ask him to tell me that we would last forever. He wouldn’t. A smart move. And we didn’t.

After four years, he broke up with me one February like someone with no balls! How dare you do this over the telephone after so many years? So naturally I got on the Peter Pan bus, a teary eyed skinny and freezing mess, schlepping all the way to Boston in the snow so he could break up with me to my face. And who am I kidding? I am sure a part of me (most of me) wanted to beg him not to break up with and to tell me that he’d made a mistake. I arrived and knocked on all his friends’ doors until I found him. They’d all had that part sympathy and part I am so glad I am not that guy look.

I spent the weekend in his apartment in Boston curled in a ball and sobbing and when he put my spaghetti limp body on the bus back to New York City, he hugged me for 3 solid minutes, (again I had hope, Maybe he won’t let go.) He did let go and that was the last time I saw him for years. And that was that. We didn’t last forever and I am glad he refused to give me that promise, even as a lie,  because I would’ve thrown it in the river with him and then jumped in after it.

I do want to be touched. (Don’t we all?) But more than that, it’s what is behind the touch, what’s under the fingers and the skin. How the touch makes me feel, and even though I know it won’t last forever, what it will, even is just for that moment, connect me to the world and hold me in place.

What’s behind everything is love. Whether it is a fear of it, a desire for it, a Fuck you I don’t believe in love or a giving away of it.

Some form of love is what beats our hearts and what carries us through those broken moments in the snow of Boston. Its what we all want and why when someone puts their hand on that spot on our chest or forehead (how do they always know the exact spot I need to be touched?) that we want to put our own hands on top of theirs and whisper in some secret language of the hands, Yes, this feels right. Yes, you can stay. Yes, I love you too.

And then your eyes open and the lights are back and you put on your boots or your sandals, depending on the weather, and your leave the yoga class. And you may get off that bus in NYC after a miserable 8 hour ride in the snow from Boston and you may forget that vow to love and how good it felt but it is there and it will always be there.

If you let it exist as if it belongs to you. As if you deserve it.

You do.


Delight, Yoga Classes

Look For The Whee In Everything!

September 17, 2012
Wheee! Filming for CBS The Doctors at Equinox! We had a lot of Wheees!

whee interjection ˈhwē, ˈwē

Definition of WHEE

—used to express delight or exuberance

I have a few quirks as a yoga teacher. I have some rules. One of them, which you all know by now is: If you fall you must laugh.

Rod Stweart’s wife Penny and I for a filming of Karaoke Yoga for the British show Lorraine. She liked my rule! We laughed a lot.

Another one: You are not allowed to take YOURSELF seriously.

And then there’s: when you are hopping up and attempting a handstand you must yell “wheeee!” 

There are a few reasons behind this. One is this: try and say Whee without smiling.

See. I told you. You can’t.

In a land where most of us (read:me) take ourselves too seriously, and especially our yoga, a little smiling can go a long way. A little light heartedness to go with the light footedness.

The whee brings the joy back, the silliness, and the idea that this is not as serious as I am probably making it out to be.

It also helps you lose any self-consciousness (much as my Karaoke Yoga® class does.)

So here is the question: Can you find the Whee in all you do?

Where is the whee?

Reminds me of that awful 80’s commercial: Where’s the beef?

Look for the whee in everything.

Even in what can be perceived as a stressful situation, there is a Whee lurking somewhere. Maybe it is just laughing at ourselves for a moment.

I love when I get messages from people who move away or can no longer take my class and they say things like: I miss the Whee!

Why shouldn’t there be more Whee?

I am not suggesting you don’t take your job seriously or your yoga practice. I am suggesting you (read: me again) stop taking yourself so seriously!

Most of us are desperate for more joy, more connection, more Wheeeeeeeee!

Post below your Whee of the day.

Must have at least on Whee a day says ancient Chinese proverb!

Wheee! Filming for CBS The Doctors at Equinox! We had a lot of Wheees!

Beating Fear with a Stick, courage, Eating Disorders/Healing

Why I Do What I Do.

August 5, 2012

I have been writing an awful lot lately about my battle with anorexia and depression.

I got this email today and it came as a gentle nudge from the Universe saying Keep going Jen, keep doing what you are doing. 

Hi Jennifer,

This is Allie, one of your yoga students at Equinox South Bay. Thank you so much for allowing me to approach you this morning with questions about your recovery with an eating disorder.

My struggles with anorexia and bulimia began when I was 15 years old.

I am now 25 and consider myself about 85% recovered. I’ve actively been working in recovery for years and I am so proud of all the progress I have made, but I am not going to settle for living a life only 85% recovered from an eating disorder. I can go about life like this and be okay, but I want more. And I know that I am capable of being more.

As Dr. Wayne Dyer says, ” Do you want to be ordinary or do you want to be extraordinary”? We are all extraordinary and deserve to realize this and live life as extraordinary beings.

I don’t believe I am the eating disorder, nor will I ever allow the eating disorder to define me as I once did. I believe that I used the eating disorder as my disguise. Growing up in the persian culture, I found it extremely difficult to develop a sense of identity because of limiting cultural expectations of what a woman should be, act, etc. Thus, growing up I identified myself with an eating disorder, with an obsession with thinness because being thin and beautiful was what was idealized. It became the only thing I thought I was worth… Beauty as defined by thinness.

Now I have the power to be me, to embrace my inner perfection and uniqueness. Sounds like an amazing realization, but it’s actually very scary.

What if I don’t like myself? What if I’m not strong enough to manifest my true calling? The eating disorder responds with “well if you keep me around, if you suck at everything else at least you will still be thin and beautiful. At least you won’t be a failure and fat.” Isn’t that disgusting?

As I am sure you know, living with an eating disorder is very limiting and disempowering. I admire you so much because you have overcome this. You are a walking example of what I have always envisioned full recovery to look like for myself. You fully believe in yourself. You are spiritually so strong. You seem as though you fully embrace who you are and enjoy such a rich life. You found the courage to replace trust in an eating disorder with self-trust. You trusted in yourself that you have what it takes to manifest your darma and to live a life fulfilled- a life full of passion, joy, and happiness. This is so inspiring to me.


I really appreciate your willingness to meet with me next week to share about your recovery. Does next Tuesday after class still work for you? I find you so inspiring and I can’t wait to hear more about your journey of healing :)


Thank you again,


Allie :)

Hi there lovely,

It’s S. I am sending my request out into the Universe (the “I want to go on Jennifer’s Maui Retreat request!”) and hoping it is meant to be. I am registering for the 2013 Winter YogaWorks teacher training, however the dates have not been firmly set (they suspect January or February – I am crossing my fingers for late Feb).


Again, I’m glad to have met a friend and inspirational soul such as yourself. In my junior and senior years of college I began to write about my battle with anorexia, for the first time, and I received mixed reactions. So many people are confused and simply can’t wrap their minds around the disease and just say things like, “Well…why didn’t you just eat?” Some remarks are cruel, some are simply perplexed, and some are heartwarmingly, overwhelmingly amazing (as you well know, I’m sure). I feel it is a calling of mine to write about this. To communicate to society that eating disorders HAPPEN. They’re nothing to be embarrassed about. They’re diseases. We can at least provide preventative treatment as a society. I could go on and on. I just want to thank you for the support and for being the brave voice that you are, because your MindBodyGreen piece is what led me to you. And you have had a profound impact on me thus far.


Sending you light and love, sweet one, be well!



Hi Jen,We spoke briefly after your class at Marina del Rey last week. I take your classes at all of the different Equinoxes around town. I wanted to thank you so much for your writing and teaching. I’m currently struggling with an eating disorder and reading your posts and hearing you talk about your struggle and how far you’ve come has really helped me to see that there is a light at the end.

Thank you again for all that you do!!!

Love, O.


With permission I am sharing these below so you understand how very important and powerful it is to follow what you feel to be your calling, your purpose. Your work.

Let that work be your love.

Let that love carry through your days even when you are feeling small or unsure or like you have a devil on your back.

Let it be.

Guest Posts

Karaoke Yoga Gone Global!

June 29, 2012

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

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!


If You Want To Feel Good…..

June 20, 2012
air guitar!!!

If you want to feel good you must do at least 5 minutes of air guitar a day. ~Jen Pastiloff

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……

air guitar!!!

me, Lori Corbin of ABC and Chelsea Hagler of Equinox

And So It Is, Contests & Giveaways

Getting It Awesome.

June 8, 2012

There’s no getting it right. There’s just getting it Awesome. ~Me.

Tonight in my gentle yoga class at Equinox in Santa Monica, which, by the way is a Friday night at 7 pm, there were almost all guys. Big strapping mighty tatooed guys.

I felt inspired.

Inspiration happened to be the theme of class so it was perfect!

I love how this class, who some might think of as a wimpy version of yoga, was attracting more men than women. And on a Friday night to boot!

One guy in particular kept looking at me in that I-am-a-beginner kind of way. I went over to him.

Yes, he was a beginner but he also barely spoke English.

So he said he had to look around a lot.

I told him not to worry that I was mostly deaf and had to look around a lot too to figure out what was going on.

How similar we were!

I told them tonight that there was no getting it right.

There was just getting it awesome.

So I am quoting myself.

(It’s my blog. I can.)

This philosophy applies to all my classes but also to life.

If you have any questions about what being awesome means just go in the bathroom. Turn on the light. Look in the mirror.

There. Now that’s awesome.

Tweet me with the hashtag #gettingitawesome for a chance to win a Manifestation tank or t-shirt. 

I am @ManifestYogaJen on Twitter. Click here to send me a tweet from your badass self.

Don’t forgetsign and #gettingitawesome.


What The What is Karaoke Yoga?

June 6, 2012

Karaoke Yoga®.

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.

banner by Jenni Young Creatives, of course

We sing in my classes.

We sing a lot.

We laugh.

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

Daily Manifestation Challenge

I Take Responsibility For _______. The DMC is Back! Daily Manifestation Challenge by Jen Pastiloff.

April 4, 2012

In my Manifestation Workshops I ask the people in the room to do a lot of things.

I ask them to sing.

To dance.

To twist.

To downdog.

To be silly.

To write.

One of the things I have them write is a sentence that begins with I take responsibility for ________. They then finish the sentence and keep writing for a few minutes.

The great thing about this journaling is that because I have gotten them hot and sweaty and taken them to the edge in their yoga practice, their writing is more raw, less  thought out as it were, less inhibited. More truth-filled.

They get more by thinking less.

Oh, the irony. The sweet irony.

I ask them how many times they keep a journal by their mat in yoga class. Most said never. It’s like taking a journal with you into your dreams.

So they finish this sentence I take responsibility for ________. On Sunday, in NYC at Pure Yoga, I looked around at my packed workshop as they were writing this portion and I noticed all the faces got dark as if a cloud of worry and guilt landed between their eyebrows and started to rain heavy thoughts.

I suggested to the room Don’t forget to take responsibility for your awesomeness too.

The room lit up. The weather changed.

It was as, all at once, they all thought Oh yea, I am awesome! I forget sometimes.

We all do. We are human. Hopefully.

Sometimes these questions lead us to the corners of our souls, and that is fine. We need to look there every once in a while and clean it out. But I would like to invite you all to go to the light places. The places where you are having a dance party (we do that in my workshop as well.) The places were you are your best self.

Your highest self.

Today’s DMC, or Daily Manifestation Challenge is this: What can you take responsibility for in your own life? In the comment section below, start yours with: I take responsibility for ______________.

Also, take a look at where you are taking responsibility for what is not yours. For example, I no longer take responsibility for my dad dying. Not mine. I give it back.

Are you giving someone else responsibilities that aren’t theirs? How about this one: He makes me feel so bad about myself. My last relationship before I met my husband was this kind. The kind where I gave him all the power, blame and responsibility. I was unhappy all the time. I mean, I must’ve been if I refer to that time as The Dark Years.

Last night in class it was our mantra. Whenever the hands come to prayer my students silently said ” I take responsibility for __________.” They filled in the blank with their own private universe.

The hands came to prayer at least 50 times so my hope is that a sort of rewiring occurs. My hope is that the cable has been re-installed, the lights came back on, the rent got paid. My hope is that they walk out of the room and into their homes with that new thought in their mind which, in turn, will shift their lives, in small or not so subtle ways.

I gave out my Manifestation bracelets yesterday in class. I told my students to look at that blue band and remember what they can take responsibility for.

One of my favorite students, a handsome older man who is a grandfather (he’s the one who told me I give mini semi-Jewish church-like sermons) sent me this email last night:

Dear Jen, The bracelet is already working. I realized that I manifest to myself regret and sorrow.

So the bracelet reminds me to move away from that.

Also, the taking responsibility idea — very useful. Hard to do but necessary and


Where do you keep coming up with all this good stuff?

What can you take responsibility for today?

I take responsibility for how far I have come in 3 years.

I take responsibility for my own happiness.

I take responsibility for my choices.

I take responsibility for my creativity.

I take responsibility for my chaos.

I take responsibility for my kindness.

I take responsibility for the people I chosen to have in my life.

I take responsibility for the powerful connector that I am and the connections I make with people.

I take responsibility for my procrastination.

I take responsibility for my health.

Now it’s your turn.

The Daily Manifestation Challenge is back. Manifesting our best selves one laugh a time.  One thought a time. One breath at a time.

I take responsibility for getting invited by Oprah's people to be at Oprah on Monday in NYC. I made it happen. Bam!

Love yourself, Accept, Forgive and.... Take Responsibility!
My dear friend Karen Salmansohn made this poster. She is incredible. Am reading her book "Bounce Back" right now and it is life changing! Check her out at

Daily Manifestation Challenge, Self Image

Courage Part 2: The Courage to Love Myself. The DMC.

February 15, 2012
my dad and I in Pennsauken, NJ

Courage has been such a powerful theme this week in my classes that I felt the need to talk about it again. Yesterday was Valentine’s Day so I made the theme of “courage” a bit more specific.

On Valentine’s Day, class was titled ” The Courage to Love Myself.”

I saw people squeam (not sure if this is an actual word but it feels apropos.)

I use mantras in my class. When the hands come together in prayer, as they do so often in my yoga classes, you recite a silent mantra. Yesterday’s was ” I love myself.”

I saw people turn red and fidget. Not everyone of course. But the majority got uncomfortable.


We are generally taught that we don’t say that. Then, as we get older, we read self- help books and go to therapy to learn how to say that very thing. A conundrum to say the least.

I told my class not to confuse the mantra with ” I love myself more than _____” or ” I am better than ______”. Finding that love within ourselves so we can go out and shine our light, so we can, in turn, love others; that is what the mantra is about. Going back to Brene Brown, it is the courage to love ourselves with all our imperfections. The courage to be imperfect.

I opened the mirrors at Equinox. Something I NEVER do. I had everyone turn and face the mirror in a seated meditation. They were just to stare at themselves in the mirror and meditate on loving themselves, the highest part of themselves. And also the imperfect parts of themselves. All of themselves. And yes, I played Whitney Houston’s  “I will always love you”. 

To say it was powerful would be an understatement.

I will let you do it on your own to see what it was like, except, imagine 40 sweaty bodies sitting around you. I chose that song because yes, Whitney Houston passed away on Saturday evening and it can’t be lost on anyone that what she was singing about in so many of her songs, that very self-love, eluded her.

Sure, it was heartbreaking to hear her belt out: Bittersweet memories, that is all I’m taking with me. So, goodbye. Please, don’t cry.We both know I’m not what you, you need. 

I thought it not only a gorgeous song and memory of Whitney, but a profound reminder of just how imperative it is, that no matter what, at all costs, we must love ourselves.

Look at the alternative.

I think of my own father. My father who was beloved to so many and yet failed to love himself deeply. I won’t go into detail here as I am writing a book, but suffice to say, self-abuse is what ended his life at such a young age.

If I could go back in time, which as you know if one of my great fantasies, I would go back as I am now, a teacher who creates a space for people to feel really good about themselves, who encourages them to let go of what is no longer serving them and mostly to laugh at themselves more often. I would remind my father of all the people who love him and who he is about to leave behind. I would beg him.

I would re-love him until he got it.

But the truth is, it may not make a difference.

my dad and I in Pennsauken, NJ

Say I did have a time travel machine and I did go back, he may still do the same things he did in 1983.

The fact is, and the facts are very very important here, the fact is, that it starts within ourselves. We cannot try to grasp air in order to turn it into something solid you can use to live inside. We absolutely cannot poison our minds with venom and then blow kisses. We cannot expect to give away what we lack ourselves. 

I tried. It does not work.

Facts are important and they are something we often try and change. The fact is my dad died at age 38. The fact is it in 2012. The fact is I went to NYU. The fact is my nephew has Prader Willi Syndrome. The fact is I live in Santa Monica. We may have opinions but facts are facts.

So look in the mirror. That is today’s Daily Manifestation Challenge. Say ” I love myself.”

Make it a fact.

Say: “I love myself even though _______ or despite _________.”

I asked my students last night how it made them feel, physiologically and emotionally when they said it to themselves. I know I feel a little corny, my heart races and I get red.

My question is: Why?

Why is it so uncomfortable.

I am bringing it way back into vogue, way into fashion and very very trendy to love ourselves.

Declare it below.

Say it until you mean it.

I love you.

Jen xo

I will leave you with the closing line’s of one of my favorite poems called “The Visitor” by Mary Oliver.

in which at last
I saw what a child must love, 
I saw what love might have done
had we loved in time.

Q & A Series, Self Image

Sarah DeAnna: SuperModel YOU. The Manifestation Q&A Series.

February 12, 2012

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.

Sarah DeAnna stumbled into my yoga class like she was always meant to be in my life, the way many of my tribe have done before her. Some might call it an accident.

I know better.

When you get to her last question in this interview you will see the serendipity involved in her being in my class that day. The power behind the intentions she set in that very first class she ever took with me.

Sarah is a high fashion SkealthyModel (skinny healthy), writer, and health enthusiast. Overcoming childhood poverty and tragedies, Sarah DeAnna graduated high school with honors, then put herself through college finishing ahead of schedule and went on to become an international high fashion model who’s worked for Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, Vogue, and countless others. Her upcoming book SuperModel You is being published by the esteemed Hay House.

What I love most about Sarah is her inner beauty. It’s always a treat to meet someone who makes their living off what they look like and to discover that is the thing you notice last about them. The first thing that pops into my mind when I think of Sarah is her kindness. Sure, she is stunning.  That’s not why I asked her to do this q&a though. She is a living example of what it means to be self-actualized. She is beautiful, yet humble. She is powerful, yet gentle. She is willing to be silly and not take herself too seriously (one of my favorite qualities in a person.)

She is someone I would want as a role model for my daughter (no, I am not expecting.)

Not yet anyway. :)

It is a great honor to introduce you to Sarah DeAnna. 

Jennifer Pastiloff: What are you most proud to have manifested in your life?

Sarah DeAnna: I am most proud of what I’ve manifested in terms of my future life and where I’m going. I am not lost in the overgrown jungle of life. I am on the clear and open road of my dreams. A lot of times, when people think of manifestations, they think of the physical things; the things they can see, touch, taste, and hold in their hand. But for me, knowing that I am on the right path to fulfilling all of my dreams is what’s allowing me to live in the NOW as they say we should, enjoying the journey and not the destination or in this case, the manifestation. :)

Jennifer Pastiloff: What is the greatest lesson that you have learned from being a model? From your own personal yoga practice? From being a writer?

Sarah DeAnna:

From Modeling:

That we really are ALL beautiful! We should not compare ourselves or judge ourselves against another. It would be better to use those feelings of “jealousy and envy” as inspiration to inspire us to the action that will lead us manifest whatever we find ourselves coveting in another. For example, if we find ourselves jealous of another person’s body, let that inspire us to work out more, or eat healthier, take better care of ourselves, or realize how beautiful our body really is.

From Yoga:

OMG! OM with a G! :) It is endless! Yoga’s great lessons never stop! The beauty of yoga is that it’s a life long practice and something you can do forever. One can never master yoga. Yoga is the physical and mental practice of living, breathing, and being. I’ve learned something in every yoga class and from every yoga instructor. Even if for example I dislike a class and find it not challenging enough or too slow, I am able to practice patience and the art of finding something good in everything. I’m really athletic so I thought yoga was boring and easy and never wanted to try it. I will be eternally grateful to all my yoga instructors and especially to, Keith Levin, my 1st yoga instructor, for challenging me to try his class and humbling me beyond words.

From Writing:

I don’t actually consider myself a writer, even though I write everyday. I prefer to be called an author. Writing is an art and that’s why NY Times Bestselling writer, Eve Adamson, will be making sure my book, Model Skinny, is in tip top shape. (Pun intended). On the contrary, I believe that we are all writers, singers, dancers and artists. Each and every one of us has something to share, express, and contribute in the lives of others.

Jennifer Pastiloff: I have a list of “rules”. See below. What would some of Sarah DeAnna’s “rules” be?

Sarah DeAnna: Rules…? I have so many rules. Too many rules. And, too many expectations. Mostly of myself that I have in the past projected onto others. Now, my only rule is to break those rules! Have fun. Live free. Trust yourself. Go with the Flow. Let Go. Expect nothing and expect everything at the same time. And, laugh and smile as much as humanly possible. Even if you’re faking it, a fake smile still releases serotonin making you feel better, can light up a room, and can improve even a stranger’s day. :)

Jennifer Pastiloff: Who/what inspires you the most?

Sarah DeAnna: The people who challenge the socially unaccepted norms and beliefs and who have changed the world as we know it will forever be an inspiration to me to NEVER give up and to challenge your beliefs. Most of the time, the only thing that’s holding us back from realizing our dreams are the very beliefs we harbor against them. Inspiration is everywhere and in everything, what’s truly inspiring, is finding inspiration in the mundane, the ugly, the uncommon, and in things generally disregarded.

Jennifer Pastiloff: I teach many of my classes to the theme of gratitude. If you could say thank you right now to one person who would it be?

Sarah DeAnna: I am thankful to so many people that I could go on an endless rampage of appreciation: for my friends, my family, my teachers, my agents, my publishing company, my clients, etc. I am even thankful to the people who I have perceived have done me wrong and who have hurt me. From those people there has always been a lesson learned and I have grown insurmountably because of it. If I had to chose one person to give the most gratitude to, it probably would be to the person who has hurt me the most, who has broken my heart, and who has caused me to question myself and everything around me. It was in the dark of that pain that led me to the light that shines on me today.

Jennifer Pastiloff: What is one message you would pass on right now to someone looking to manifest their best selves?

Sarah DeAnna: Whoever your best self is, whatever they look like, dress like, act like… etc.. try your best everyday to emulate and be that person. Your best self is the person you really are, minus all the baggage, biases, stereotypes, negativity, and everything else that’s keeping you from living your true potential. Your BEST SELF=YOUR TRUE SELF!

Jennifer Pastiloff: What brings you the most joy? Your joy list, as it were.

Sarah DeAnna:  


I get the most joy out of being healthy fit, active, and following my passions and dreams. I love knowing that I made a difference in someone’s day or life no matter how small. Especially to the strangers and people I’ve never met on Facebook, Twitter, and other places, they bring me so much joy and assure me that I am doing what I was meant to do. 

Jennifer Pastiloff: What is Sarah DeAnna to manifesting in 2012?

Sarah DeAnna: Expect Everything and Expect Nothing at the Same Time! (See my No Rules, Rules). I expect an amazing, abundant, and joyful journey. I hope you’re joining me!

Jennifer Pastiloff: Can you tell us a little about your journey. Tell us about ModelSkinny?

Sarah DeAnna: My personal journey has been and continues to be amazing. It has been crazy and tragic and awesome and just incredible in every way. Model Skinny, was/is my physical body’s journey. I have always been on the journey to Model Skinny, my dream body. Model Skinny is how I defined the body I always wanted to have. The body I have now. My best self I suppose in terms of my physical, visible, outer body.

Model Skinny is a book I began writing, when I first starting modeling and saw the overwhelming need for people, models and everyone else, to know that they can have the body they want and still be healthy. Model Skinny is a book about how to get the body of your dreams, which might not actually be a skinny one! And why should it be? Curves are so sexy and guys prefer that to skinny! But if it’s a skinny body you desire, it’s important to know that not all models are anorexic, bulimic, or have an eating disorder. And my book, Model Skinny, will give you the keys you need to manifest your dream body in whatever shape or size that may be.

Jennifer Pastiloff: How did Hay House find out about you? When is the book out?

Sarah DeAnna: The better question is how was I so lucky to find out about Hay House!? Most people my age have never heard of Hay House, Louise Hay, Wayne Dyer or any of the other amazing Hay House authors. While shopping my book with other publisher’s, something felt wrong. I didn’t know what it was, but something wasn’t right. I decided to walk away from the offers and my literary agent and within a few months, I discovered Hay House. In fact, it was the authors at Hay House and what Hay House stands for that inspired me most. Many of the Hay House authors and the people who buy the books and materials they produce are older, so I knew the odds were stacked against me. But I was determine to show Hay House that I could be a Hay House author and hopefully help inspire a younger generation to all the incredible things they do. Imagine my surprise that inspiring a younger generation was exactly the vision of Louise Hay and the Hay House team and is the objective of the Hay House Ignite Event in March. (See link for information).

The publishing date is TBD, but the “Model Skealthy Dream is Alive” as I wrote on the piece of paper in my 1st yoga class with you. Skealthy means skinny/healthy. You can look it up. :)

Jennifer Pastiloff: When was the last time you laughed at yourself?

Sarah DeAnna: The other night! And I really want to tell you about it because it was absolutely hilarious! But it’s going to be an anecdote in my next book. Let’s just say, I did something really stupid that hurt really bad, but ended up inspiring me. I don’t believe in accidents or mistakes, I believe everything occurs for a reason and when you start to see the world that way, it’s amazing how seemingly really tragic events or things can change your life and become some of your greatest blessings in disguise!

Jennifer Pastiloff: Can you share the story again of the first time you came to my class… the note I had you write and how you found it later because I think you are a walking example of someone who is manifesting their dreams by first imagining them. You are creating the life of your dreams!

Sarah DeAnna: 

Here is link to an earlier post where Sarah shares her story about my yoga class and what transpired during and after.

Dear Jennifer,

So this is the paper from my 1st class EVER with you! I walked in, I was late… (kinda a problem I’ve been working on…) You said, “Here’s a piece of paper, write down what you’re manifesting right now in your life. Whatever that is. The first thing that comes to your mind”. I was late, so I just scribbled this down in 2 seconds.

The Hay House

Sarah DeAnna Supermodel

Model Skealthy Man of my

Dreams Dream Life Spirituality

Family Friends Money

Love Dream is


Then you told us to fold it up put it under or next to our mat and think of it every time our hands came together. I never felt so alive in that class! So connected to my dream and everything I wanted. Then class ended and I took that piece of paper and put it in my backpack only to find it months later. And when I unfolded it, it put the biggest, happiest, and most authentic smile on my face.

The truth is I’ve been chasing these dreams for sometime now and I have only recently began to manifest them in the most amazing and incredible ways. As for did I manifest everything in that class before or after I signed my dream book deal with my dream publishing house and my dream writer, I can NOT recall precisely. But the timing of both definitely coincided and definitely influenced one another. Now this piece of paper is tacked on my wall as a reminder about the power of manifestation and the invaluable impact that one class, one person, and or one moment in time can have on your life! I really do feel like I am living my dream life and the words on this piece of paper from your class can NOT feel more active in my vibration than if I was hit on the head with a gong!

Jennifer, you are an incredible person and a wonderful teacher! My wish is that all your dreams come to fruition and that you live your life to it’s fullest manifestation possible!

With Love and Gratitude, SarahDeAnna

Twitter: @ModelSkinny
Hay House Bio/Event information:

You Tube Link for event:

Jen’s “rules”:

1. Be Kind.

2. Have a sense of humor especially when it comes to yourself

3. Write poems, even if only in your head

4. Sing out loud, even if badly

5. Dance

6. If you don’t have anything nice to say… you know the deal

7. Find things to be in awe of

8. Be grateful for what you have right now .

9. Watch Modern Family, read Wayne Dyer, and end every complaint with “But I’m so blessed!”

10. Duh, do yoga

11. Don’t worry. Everyone on Facebook seems like they have happier and funner lives. They don’t.

12. Tell someone you love that you love them. Right now.

13.. Take more pictures.

14. Forgive yourself for not being perfect. No such thing.

15. Thank the Universe in advance.

Delight, manifesting, Owning It!

Share of the Day: An Inspiring Email & A Dream Coming True.

January 21, 2012

Dear Manifesters, I just have to share this email I received from a student.

And for those of you who take my class and have been in it when we write stuff down on paper or stickies.. Take note of this email below which made me smile all day!


Dear Jennifer,

So this is the paper from my 1st class EVER with you! I walked in, I was late… (kinda a problem I’ve been working on…) You said, “Here’s a piece of paper, write down what you’re manifesting right now in your life. Whatever that is. The first thing that comes to your mind”. I was late, so I just scribbled this down in 2 seconds.

The Hay House
Sarah DeAnna Supermodel
Model Skealthy Man of my 
Dreams Dream Life Spirituality
Family Friends Money
Love Dream is
Then you told us to fold it up put it under or next to our mat and think of it every time our hands came together. I never felt so alive in that class! So connected to my dream and everything I wanted. Then class ended and I took that piece of paper and put it in my backpack only to find it months later. And when I unfolded it, it put the biggest, happiest, and most authentic smile on my face.
The truth is I’ve been chasing these dreams for sometime now and I have only recently began to manifest them in the most amazing and incredible ways. As for did I manifest everything in that class before or after I signed my dream book deal with my dream publishing house and my dream writer, I can NOT recall precisely. But the timing of both definitely coincided and definitely influenced one another. Now this piece of paper is tacked on my wall as a reminder about the power of manifestation and the invaluable impact that one class, one person, and or one moment in time can have on your life! I really do feel like I am living my dream life and the words on this piece of paper from your class can NOT feel more active in my vibration than if I was hit on the head with a gong!
Jennifer, you are an incredible person and a wonderful teacher! My wish is that all your dreams come to fruition and that you live your life to it’s fullest manifestation possible!
With Love and Gratitude, SarahDeAnna
ps Sarah will be doing a Q&A very soon so stay tuned…… So excited for her book.
Like her Facebook page here