It has been a week of ups and downs for me. I suppose this is typical for 2020. I started to write this evening with feelings of fear and insecurity and in that my purpose wasn’t authenticity and sharing goodness, . However, as I was writing I was reminded of something Brene Brown says, “Don’t shrink, don’t puff up, just stand your sacred ground”.
I realized that my writing was coming from a place of try to ‘puff up’ due to my fears and insecurities. So I deleted what I wrote. I was going to stop writing altogether and watch TV, but then reconsidered. Instead I thought I’d share some of my favourite Brene Brown things.
If you’re not familiar with Brene Brown she is a researcher, storyteller and Texan. Her areas of research include shame, vulnerability, courage and empathy. She has written several books including one of my all time favourite books, The Gifts of Imperfection. She speaks in a down to earth, relatable way and indeed is not shy about sharing her own imperfections. Her writing also offers ideas on actions we can take to live our best lives.
Many people first came to know her through her TED Talk which is one of the most popular of all time.
Brene Brown also hosts two podcasts, Daring to Lead, and Unlocking Us.
After going down the Brene Brown rabbit-hole for just a little while I am now out of that place of insecurity and fear. Instead I am feeling inspired. I know 2020 has been throwing a lot at us. Maybe today or sometime in the week ahead you might find that you too are struggling in one way or another. Perhaps you will find spending a little time with Brene Brown is just the thing you need too.
I did my yoga teacher training through Namaskar Yoga in Saskatoon under the guidance of Kathleen and Doug . Approximately once month for a little over a year I would spend a weekend immersed in learning various aspects of yoga. At the beginning of each weekend Kathleen would remind us that we never know what others might be going through. She reminded us that just by looking at others we might not see the struggles and challenges they were facing at this moment. Anyone in our group could be having a hard day including our teachers. Therefore she stressed the importance of kindness towards one another.
I have been thinking a lot about that lately. As we enter the second wave our pandemic which is proving to have higher numbers than the first wave, I see people struggling to maintain their usual optimism. As I hear those I know with small businesses tune into the daily news briefings, I see the fear and the worry they have about how another lockdown might impact the future of their dream and hard work. Even those who know and often give gratitude for their many blessings are now struggling with the weight of what the winter ahead might bring.
I definitely don’t have all the answers. I have no interest in accidentally falling into toxic positivity by talking about gratitude and all the self care things you could be doing. Though there is value in gratitude and self care, it seems to me there is also value in acknowledging this unique time we are in. Maybe you are struggling today and not being able to practice self care or gratitude is just another thing you are feeling bad about at this moment.
Instead, this is just a reminder that we really don’t know in what ways those around us might be struggling. This is a little reminder to be kind to those we encounter. Perhaps what we initially see in them is not the whole story. Maybe there is more going on that if we knew might change our initial reaction and judgement. This is also a little reminder to be kind to yourself. We might be struggling and think that it is just us. We might wonder how everyone around us is doing okay but why we’re not. I assure that you are not the only one. You are doing the best you can at this moment. Today that is enough.
As I flip though my daily planner I can’t believe that there is just under 9 weeks left in 2020. And what a year it has been.
This time last year I was recovering from a surgery and anxiously awaiting the new year when I could go back into the studio and teach a variety of yoga and fitness classes again. In January I did make it back to the studio only to have to shut down just a couple months later due to Covid-19.
Pretty quick I took my classes online and this year has brought a huge amount of learning for me. Even as things began to reopen in my area I have found that many folks still prefer to do their yoga and fitness virtually. Additionally, my small studio that used to hold up to 12 people can now only have 4 with current Covid guidelines. Therefore, I have been teaching a mix of virtual and in-person classes.
Though it has not been the year I envisioned I know that I have been very fortunate this year. Our family’s health has not been affected by Covid and though we had have had periods where we couldn’t work I know we have had more work options than some.
It has been important to me that anyone who needs yoga or fitness in their life have that opportunity so I have been doing all virtual classes by donation-pay what you can, and if you can’t afford anything at the moment that is okay too. I would rather have you join in and get that little pocket of time just for you. Classes continue to be by donation through till the end of 2020.
With it already November I imagine there could be an urge to put off those yoga and fitness goals till the new year. Yet, I encourage you to start today. With 9 weeks left there’s still so much you can accomplish. Just start!
Send a message for more info on how to participate in the virtual classes.