It's been a while since my last blog post and that's purely because I’ve been taking a break from certain aspects of my Yoga practice.
Why is that? well slowly I started to feel disconnected from my practice spiritually but I was feeling my body was aggravated with aches and pains, I sought relief from Chiropractor and massage appointments however it would only relieve symptoms before the aches and pains came back into my body. I was getting very frustrated with myself. So I decided to slow down and step away from the advanced physical practice and explore breath work and mediation practice and I even went on a weekend retreat where I realised I could become very relaxed and at ease in body mind and soul purely from gentle movement, breathwork and meditation practices.
As Summer approached, I decided I also needed a break in teaching Yoga, I felt I needed to focus on myself before I could authentically support my student's in their practice.
During this break I found my love for Swimming, which I now do 2 times or more a week. And I realised being in water releases any tension in my body and I feel very relaxed and calm afterwards.
I've realised that my body needs time to heal away from the strong yoga practice I was doing for so long. I found this very hard to admit, as I felt lazy and guilty. I worried I would lose the flexibility and strength. I felt like I was becoming an ex-Yogi and that if I took a break from this along with teaching, I would be losing my experience and skills.
But in recent weeks my mindset shifted, and I realised that there is a reason why this has happened. I am exactly where I need to be even if it's not where I think or thought I should be.
Taking a break from whatever it is that you do as a hobby or for your work is ok. For me it's taught me to listen and respect my body and my mind to avoid burnout. I always tell my Yoga student's to listen to their body and not push themselves yet when it comes to my own practice I would without realising be pushing myself too far and not linking the aches and pains were aggravations in my body from my strong Yoga practice.
I've learnt that meditating is what I need the most, along with some simple breath work and gentle stretches.
I also used Yoga as a way to deal with stress and anxiety, I craved that 'ahhhh' feeling during Savasana all the time. But I’ve had to find other ways to cope with stress. I've been taking longer walks in nature, swimming, going away on mini weekend breaks, gardening, meditating. So, I’ve found so many other things that keep me grounded and bring me joy.
I've realised I’ve had to step back and let go of the advanced physical aspect ... yes ...I can do handstands, headstands, splits, arm balances but too much is not good for me. It doesn’t mean to say I won't dabble in a strong practice now and again and sometimes I will do a random handstand and I do feel a lot stronger because my body has been resting. But i also will ensure i seek Yin Yoga and mediation practices to find a balance....
It's all about balance....people who have core characteristics in their personality, like intensity and fire, should work on balancing their energy by engaging in activities that promote the opposite effect e.g Yin Yoga, Meditation.
If you are sluggish and tend to be more sedentary, you should work toward a more active or fiery yoga practice e.g Vinyasa