I have previously mentioned that a big part of my mental health is kept in balance with a daily dose of yoga.. and year after year I build upon the depth of this, diligently attending or teaching class, waking early or setting aside 20-60 mins for home practice. Lately something hasn’t felt “right” and I have been feeling a little too quick to agitate, and more annoyed at silly things.. off balance – it was only today when I stopped myself from taking another call, answering another email and took my butt to class, did I realise that in the last few months I wasn’t “yoga-ing”. My practice each day had transitioned from a deep, meaningful and sacred connection of breath, movement and self to simply stretching. Check a box if you like.
This all dawned upon me today- I flung out my mat in a room filled with a familiar scent, dimmed lights and deeply relaxing sounds, settled upon my bolster in a hip opener and took my first deep, belly breath – THIS WAS YOGA. With each asana we were guided through I felt as though I was moving closer and closer towards “home” the inner dwelling of my being. Tears gently found their way down my cheeks and creating little puddles in my mat and I couldn’t have been happier.
These tears to me, were a reminder of what yoga is, how yoga soothes me, connects me and only then, after I feel that deep connection, only the do I realise I am also enjoying the physical benefits, the deep stretch and opening of my body. If I were simply stretching my mind may have wandered off searching the room to see if anyone noticed my shirt halfway up my back, exposing my belly, I would have adjusted and readjusted my tights as they crept further down my hips unveiling my little muffin top and love handles. Don’t get me wrong, I noticed it, I felt it and I had to check my ego, resist the temptation to be self conscious – I wanted to stay present with my breath. Stay ‘yoga-ing’ not stretching.
This is not an easy thing to do, especially when you own the studio you are ‘yoga-ing’ in…sure that others in the class are probably watching, but I did not care. I was so relieved to be back on my mat and back to what I know is so very good for me, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
So, I am grateful today to be so lovingly reminded that there is a massive difference between just stretching and enjoying yoga.
I feel awakened, soothed and connected all at once.
Do you want to learn how to move from simply stretching to yoga? Call or email us to find the right class and location for you. Joining the Rebalance Family means more than just a workout. We care about your wellbeing and have a supportive environment. We prioritise your wellbeing and provide a sanctuary for you to come and relax. Workout. But workout with purpose with us!
Written by Rebecca Thompson – Rocklea and Capalaba Partner