It must have been some time in 2004 or 2005 when I was introduced to one of my heart’s true longings. I was reading the latest Yoga Journal and there was a story about OM Yoga in New York, a center run by a woman named Cindi Lee. To say that I fell immediately in love with Cindi and the whole concept of OM Yoga is an understatement. I knew that I wanted to achieve something like what she had done.
I’ve spent the intervening years dreaming up every detail of what I lovingly refer to as the Yoga Village. Which is a dumb name. But that’s another thing. Whenever I am unhappy in life or my job, or I’m bored midday, or I’m feeling creative, the Yoga Village is always there in my dreams.
Our thoughts become things… that’s just the way that works… so I keep it front and center all the time. I’ve made attempts in the past to get it started, but they’ve always fallen flat. I know I haven’t been ready yet for one reason or another. I’ve had more to learn, so the Village is my Big Dream but I’ve got plenty of supporting dreams that need tending to as well. Skills to acquire, studies to continue, inroads to make, relationships to establish.
In my mind it takes up an entire city block, The Village, and it’s around five stories tall. Each floor is dedicated to a different discipline or practice, and the whole thing is open to the public. Maybe we’ll be open 24 hours. But I call “not it” on the night shift.
The bottom floor of the Village is a cafe, bookstore and library. It’s the perfect place for lounging around; great for writing your screenplay, meeting clients, or studying. There’s coffee, juices and a smoothie bar. The food menu here is grab n go.
The second floor is drop-in childcare. Sometimes you’ve just got to ditch your kid for a bit, and the Village is exactly where you can do that. If you’re a member of the Village (please can we call them Village People?) childcare is included in your membership. For the general public we offer an affordable hourly rate. Finally, “going to the grocery store alone” is a thing again. High five, Mama!
Floor three is all about services: massage, acupuncture, basic spa services, and counseling too. I’d like to see a small clinic, specifically a place for affordable women’s health services, or at least referrals to trusted places.
The fourth floor is all about kicking ass. It is comprised of studios: yoga, thai chi, HIIT, TRX, weights, bands, but no machines to speak of. You don’t need machines. Just you, great form, a focused mind, and the best instructors in the whole town. There are showers, lockers, and one of those eucalyptus steam rooms. Probably a sauna too. OK, two saunas.
Floor five is a high end restaurant and bar. It is sexy and beautiful and fun. It’s healthy but also a little naughty, and I imagine it as a destination restaurant. People hold their fancy dinner meetings here. They get engaged here. They fly into town and the Village is their first stop. They leave their bags in the locker room, get themselves centered, showered, and into fresh clothes. Upstairs they go to enjoy a view that can’t be beat, and the dish they flew all this way for.
I’ve always imagined the Village, above all else, as a safe space. It’s nurturing, empowering and fun for all kinds of people. Full of treats and full of challenges, it is the best place for us all to spend a Sunday.
When you keep moving toward your dreams, even at a snail’s pace, you can’t help but make progress. When they’re always there, front and center, receiving your energy, they will become things.
I noticed recently that the Yoga Village is The Changing Room. I have been building it for a while. There are plans in the works for each aspect of the Village, which is actually The Changing Room, and I’ve slowly been building on them. It’s all online of course, so it is somewhat re-imagined. But the bones are there. The foundation has been set, and for once in my life it’s not made of sand.
I’m excited for what’s to come. It’s good to finally meet this thing in person.
What do some of your dreams look like? What kinds of things do you do to keep them alive?
Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. – Goethe
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