Occasionally I look back to the person I was before I did so much yoga. The day when my yoga was a class or two a week, or even less. Remembering when I did not have the skills or knowledge to help myself feel more comfortable in mind & body. I remember being truly confused when on my first yoga retreat, our teacher described aiming for a quiet calm mind. At that time I wasn’t sure I had ever experienced such as thing!!
When I did my yoga teacher training, it was to give myself something more lightweight to study alongside my MSc! Never did I imagine that I would learn so much & certainly I could never have thought I would be teaching yoga as a full time career. Never could I have imagined the joy & satisfaction my hobby could have bought me when I chose to do it for a ‘job’. Through the last decade I have built upon my training with Thai yoga massage & hypnotherapy, alongside many anatomy, yoga therapy courses & further study into the philosophical side of yoga. My yoga has provided me with a never ending supply of interests, areas to diversify into & most importantly that inner calm that I never thought someone like me could experience.
I am naturally anxious. I am a worrier, I tend to over plan, prepare for every potential eventuality (which means I have an amazing travel first aid kit) & an over thinker. My need for control in life & my perfectionist streak resulted in depression & mental health issues in my late teens. As I’ve aged (I would say matured but we all know that’s not true!) I have found that I have become more like Teflon…the stress slips off more easily! The Yoga Sutras describe how yoga makes us calmer, promotes an inner strength, calm & quiet. I honestly thought that could never apply to me! When I look back I realise how much it has
I can honestly say that throughout the last decade I have experienced less ups & downs, increased peace, more focus, more motivation to do what serves me rather than choosing self destructive options. I can honestly say that when life throws me a curve ball, when I hit a tough patch I am more logical. I act rather than react. I look at things in a more objectively. All from a yoga practice & study into surrounding areas. I am now deciding what interest to pursue further…do I research herbalism, do I learn about crystals, do I study the menopause & how to support women through the peri & the menopause? I love that a hobby I discovered at university through a slightly hippy father has led me to a lifestyle, an interest & a job that support me into a more comfortable way of being on every level.
I have learnt to adapt, to look inwards, to be flexible in mind as well as body. I am learning continually to be more yogi. To connect to myself & the world around me. If the term yoga means to unite…I am learning to understand that on so many levels…connecting body & breath, connecting mind & body, connecting feelings to thoughts, my inner self to the self I project outward. I am learning to be a part of the world, a community. I am aware in this period of lockdown how yoga provides me with so much support in life. So this is a little thank you to the universe for taking me on a journey that taught me yoga.
Last week I started a new hypnotherapy course online & really started to appreciate how fantastic courses can be. Watching people able to truly relax in their own home. On the sofa or even the bed, knowing that when the practice is over they can just drift quietly to bed. It really fills me with joy to be able to make a difference to peoples’ lives. I hope to be able to share my hobbies & call them a career for many decades yet.