Listening to me

What do I need?

What do you need?

I have been really trying to listen to myself lately.

Work has been extremely demanding and busy and overwhelming and stressful as we continue to go through transition. More than usual I feel tired, exhausted and wiped out.

I have really been trying to take the queues my body gives me whether physically, mentally, physiologically, emotionally.

Last weekend we had an Intensive Weekend at teacher training, which was absolutely amazing and I learned so much. But it also took a lot out of me.

I had a lot of things I wanted to do on Sunday. They were to attend Vickie’s morning yoga class; attend an optional hour discussion on meditation before our required three hours of teacher training; the three hours of class; and Sunday night Restorative yoga class.

I knew that was all too much for me and something had to give. I decided to skip Vickie’s class and did my own home practice. This also gave me my whole morning to lounge, enjoy my coffee and do a little homework.

I knew my body needed and would benefit more from a Restorative class than an asana class.

I took … Continue reading

Taking an inward journey

On Saturday in my all-day teacher training class we focused on meditation.

I think meditation is an important part of yoga practice and frankly, life. But I don’t have a regular mediation practice on my own. I can barely get in my 30-minute home yoga practice five times a week.

Mary, who taught class on Saturday, told us that meditation is an inward dark journey. A regular meditation practice is about showing inner kindness to ourselves. It gives us an opportunity to listen to what our body needs and wants.

One of our assignments was to pair up with a  classmate and schedule 10 days where we meditate on the same day. On Day 5 we check in. And after Day 10 we answer a few questions.

If I remember correctly we are asked to meditate 20-30 minutes each day. My eyes nearly fell out of my head. I was like, how am I gonna fit that in, too???

My buddy and I scheduled a time when I will be on my work winter break. But part of that time I will also be out of town. So that will be a challenge to get my meditation in and my … Continue reading

Learning about home practice

We’re not here to serve the (yoga) poses. These poses are here to serve us.

~Vickie Russell Bell in last night’s yoga teacher training class

Yesterday was my first Saturday class with Piedmont Yoga Studio’s Deep Yoga teacher training program. We have class every Thursday night and one Saturday a month.

Yesterday we got to get to know each other and we discussed home practice.

I loved working with others to brainstorm and giving each other advice and suggestions.

For most of us in the group our biggest obstacle with maintaining a regular home practice, which is ideally at least 45 minutes and five times a week, is time.

We talked about priorities in life and the “sacred hour.” What do we want to accomplish in the hour we set aside for our sacred hour?  Vickie said her four things in the sacred hour are writing, asana (yoga poses), meditation and restorative.

Before deciding how much time to spend on each we should ask ourselves: How do I want to feel? How do I get there?

Earlier in the day we talked about standing poses we liked and didn’t like. On Thursday Baxter assigned each … Continue reading

Dealing with grief

We don’t get over our grief, we change our relationship to it.- Lyn Prashant

Life is suffering, the Buddha says, and even if you’re not given to abstractions it’s easy to see that life can be hard. The added strain of a major loss can make your world unremittingly bleak.

Over the weekend my friend/co-worker/leader Perry died.

Perry had a very short battle with an aggressive cancer. His passing is a huge loss to my team, my company, his family and friends, and frankly, the world.

Perry had a huge and amazing presence. He stuck up for his team always. He was smart and caring.

I look to my friends/co-workers for support and love. But I also look to yoga to help me in this grief.

I agree with what this Yoga Journal article, which says, It’s in precisely these situations that the wisdom of the yoga tradition can be enormously helpful. Asana, breathwork, meditation—and, especially, the perspective on loss and death taught by the ancient yogis and sages of the East—can not only mitigate pain and expedite the grief process but also transform your experience of life after loss.

I did research to find specific … Continue reading