Thanks to Vu Le, who always makes me laugh and makes through-provoking points about the nonprofit sector.

Downward-Facing Budget and Other Nonprofit Yoga Poses

We in nonprofits work a lot and oftentimes neglect important things. Like flossing. And exercise. There are many benefits of yoga, which are the ancient practices of training your mind, body, and spirit. Now, you may be thinking, “I don’t have time for yoga; I have an important proposal to write.” Well, even a few minutes a day can help you get more relaxed and productive. Do not over-exert yourself if you are a yoga beginner. Try one or two poses each week, and increase the variety as you advance. Also, if your office can’t afford air conditioning this summer, all the better, because hot yoga is even more beneficial.

The Reclining Warrior pose (photo above):Place yourself into a sitting position on a reclining chair. Put both arms on the armrest. Lean backward and tilt your head back. This position stretches the lower back and neck and allows the arms to relax while enhancing circulation to the legs and pancreas.The Committee Meeting pose:

While seated, rest your head on the palm of one of your hands. Place your other arm on the table. Focus your gaze on the ceiling. Sigh heavily. This pose stretches your neck and regulates your breathing while increasing energy flow to the liver.

The Mountain of Emails pose:

Sit up straight, then gradually lean forward and rest your face on your keyboard. Keep your arms slacked at your sides. This position stretches your back and allows your arms and fingers to relax.

The Downward-Facing Budget:Sit down on the floor and lean against the wall. Rest your arms on your knees and clasp several strands of hair between fingers on both your hands. Breathe deeply while staring at a point on the floor. This position allows blood to rush to the temples, enhancing brain activity.
The Site Visit pose:Sit up straight and place your elbows on the table. Have your hands touching palm-to-palm so that the tips of your fingers are at the height of your lips. Close your eyes. Hold this position for five to sixty minutes. This pose relaxes the coccyx.
The Restricted Funding pose:Balance your weight on one arm, then lift up one leg, wrap it around the arm on which you stand, then your other arm goes underneath this leg and grabs your toes so that your toes and fingers form a ring around your standing arm. Finally, lift up your other left and place it upon the leg that is behind your other arm. Tuck your chin in and breathe. This position enhances balance and increases adrenaline flow.
The Sustainability Plan pose:Stand upright with arms relaxed at your side. While keeping your upper arms immobile, simultaneously move both your lower arms upward and then outward in a slow sweeping arc. Tilt your head slightly to one side while tightening your lips. Repeat these motions ten times. This pose stretches your arm, neck, and adjusts any abnormalities in the energy meridian.
The Specialeventsana:Stand about six inches apart from and facing a brick wall. Slowly lean forward so that your forehead touches the wall. Remove your forehead from the wall. Repeat these motions several times while keeping an even speed. This position stretches your neck and shoulder areas and regulates the flow of bile.
The Friday Afternoon pose:Lie on your side. Place your hands into the clapping position and rest your face on them. Bend your knees slightly. Inhale and exhale deeply. This pose realigns all your chakras and has been known to greatly reduce tension and papercuts.
The Unicorn pose:While in standing position, raise your arms above your head and form a heart with your thumbs and index fingers. Breathe deeply while thinking about how awesome you are for making the world a better place. This pose is best done in a tropical place like Hawaii while the sun is setting.- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Vu Le is Director of the Rainier Valley Corps, a start-up project that will be recruiting talented emerging immigrant/refugee leaders, training them in nonprofit management, and placing them in immigrant/refugee-led nonprofits in Seattle’s Rainier Valley. Vu was formerly executive director of the Vietnamese Friendship Association and currently chairs theSoutheast Seattle Education Coalition. His passion to make the world better, combined with a low score on the Law School Admission Test, drove him into the field of nonprofit work. See more of Vu’s work at