Small, Calm Things: A note from Erin | Source Yoga

Small, Calm Things: A note from Erin

July 2022


Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach. Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely. It is not given to us to know which acts or by whom will cause the critical mass to tip toward an enduring good. 

… There will always be times when you feel discouraged. I too have felt despair many times in my life, but I do not keep a chair for it. I will not entertain it. It is not allowed to eat from my plate.” 

Clarissa Pinkola Estes 


Dear friends,

I think it could be said that we indeed live in interesting times. Interesting rarely means peaceful. Or calm. Or predictable.

These are interesting, challenging, difficult, tumultuous times. Times that have often left many of us feeling discouraged, perhaps even despairing. Times where I have sometimes wondered how we are ever going to see a future that is free and just for all people, a future where we nurture and care for this beautiful planet that nurtures us.

There is much to care for in this world. In the last weeks alone, one could become outraged and despairing about countless things. It is hard to know where to direct our resources – financial, time, and energetic resources. It’s easy to get overwhelmed.

These are times were we might have the experience of hopelessness.

The wise words of Clarissa Pinkola Estes above gave me a moment of relief when I came across them. After reading her reminder about the small, calm things we might do, I reflected on the small acts of goodness that I have performed or have seen others perform recently. I though of the calm way I was with my son when he was having a difficult time the other day. I thought about the actions of a few parents in my daughter’s school that increased the diversity of books in our elementary school library and in teacher’s classrooms this past year. I thought of the countless ways the teachers and administrators in my kid’s schools supported students through a really difficult period.

“Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely…” 

We can all do small, calm things.


Some days, the small thing we can do is get down on our yoga mat and breathe.

I believe taking time to rest is one of those acts of goodness that is quite revolutionary. It’s like saying “no thank you” to the habitual pace of life – to the capitalistic grind, to the supremacist culture that says that only certain types of bodies are valuable and worthy of rest, and that our value lies only in what we produce and accomplish.

I know doing enough Downward Dogs is not going to fix our planet, it’s not going to save our democracy, it’s not going to protect our rights or the rights of others.

But if you’ve practiced with us for a while, you know that yoga is not just poses.

Yoga is the development of ourselves so that we can walk through this world as a full, beautiful expression of our truest nature. And yoga is also holding the truth that if the full, beautiful expression of others is impeded or limited, we also are not free.

There are countless ways to make a difference in this world. They are all important. All valid. Sometimes it’s offering our time, our money, our voice. Sometimes it’s raising up the voices of others. Sometimes it’s getting very close to the ground, letting ourselves soften into the earth, recognizing our human born right to find a space of quiet, a space of rest. When our bodies, our minds, our hearts, our souls have space to rest, we nurture a cumulative goodness.

I like to think of this goodness rippling out from each of us and into our individual lives and communities. It’s what I visualize at the end of each class I teach – our collective goodness expanding out. Through our words, through our relationships, through our conversations, through our connections to each other. Through the actions we each take from that goodness that we have honored and cultivated within ourselves.

Through each of our small, calm things.

With care,
Erin Joosse | she/her
Source Yoga | studio director

PS: Please help me in welcoming back some familiar faces in person this summer! Space is limited for these events, so please preregister. 

  • Join teacher Lori Ferry for a special event –  IN PERSON Relax + Restore Friday evening class in the North Tacoma Studio, July 22nd!
  • Join Christine Hills for an Outdoor Yoga class in her sweet Northend backyard – not far from Source Yoga, Sunday, July 31st.


Yoga For Everyday People

Source Yoga is a place to simply be, accept ourselves as we are in this moment, and connect with our innate wisdom.

Through the cultivation of present moment awareness through yoga and mindfulness practices, we discover and nurture our inner resources for self-care, ease, peace of mind, and compassion.

We welcome students of all ages and abilities. Join our warm, welcoming community in a supportive and non-intimidating environment.