Letting Go of Regrets (and starting to trust the timing of your life)

A week ago I saw tweet from a woman in her 30s who despite having a good education had found herself back in her hometown living with her parents and working a job that barely paid for life’s necessities. She expressed concern that she was not meeting the milestones in life like she had thought she would. She said she felt like a failure as an adult.

Like many others who saw her tweet I assured that she was not a failure and that there are no ‘right’ timeline for people. We all have our own journey and that may not look like the journey of our friends, family members and neighbours.

I shared with her how when I was in my 30s I was insecure about my lack of education and that I was fortunate to be able to finally pursue one. I shared how it wasn’t until my 40s that I started my own small business.

It could be so easy to get locked into inner dialogues about the what-ifs of doing things differently. However, that would serve no purpose.

Last weekend a memory came up on my Instagram (photo above). It was when I graduated from my yoga teacher training three years ago. I have been practicing yoga for decades and had often thought about, and even looked into becoming a yoga teacher. Yet, I didn’t.

This is another thing where I could chastise myself about for not doing it sooner. However, when I look at the photo I am reminded of the wonderful, kind instructors I had, the other inspiring students I met, and my frame of mind at the time of that training.

If I had done it years ago I wouldn’t have had the experience I did. Connections I made in that training have led me to other things that I may never have heard. I was meant to connect with the people I did. It was the right time for me.

If you have come across this and have sometimes felt like the woman who wrote the tweet, may I also assure you. There is no perfect timeline for a life. You are not a failure. You are good enough – just the way you are.

#RealLife

In the March newsletter I said I was going to launch some yoga courses the first day of spring.

I didn’t forget. As the first day of spring was approaching I knew I wasn’t going to do it yet. The yoga part of these courses is so much fun for me. However, the technology part of setting everything up stresses me out.

I imagine most of us have things that cause a bit of anxiety. Playing with new technology is one of my things. However, when I take a deep breath, sit down and just do it, I often find it’s not half as bad as what I envisioned. Once I get to it, I even find myself having fun. I love learning new things.

Maybe yoga is something you would like to learn more about. Perhaps, the idea of learning yoga even stresses you out a bit. That is actually part of my inspiration for these courses. I believe everyone deserves to have their own personal yoga journey. I want to share some tools to empower you for that journey.

Whether you are brand new to yoga, or want to deepen your knowledge in the practice, I invite you to check out the three courses I am currently offering, Foundations in Yoga Level 1, Foundations in Yoga Level 2, and Yoga with the Chair.  
https://livingskyyogafitness.ca/online-courses/

Registration is now open until April 4. Courses begin AprilĀ  7.
In these courses you work through them at your own pace. They are yours to useĀ again and again.

I invite you to join me
Warm Wishes
Denise

12 Days of Yoga- December 20-31

Some extra virtual classes to nurture ourselves through the holidays. 

December 20- Winter Solstice Sun Salutation Class 4pm
December 21- Winter Solstice Yin Class 7pm
December 22- Nurturing Foot Massage 7:30pm on Zoom
December 23- Yoga Joy (a class of some of people’s favourite poses)  5pm
December 24- Christmas Eve Yin  7pm
December 25- Christmas Morning Meditation 9:30am
December 26- Saturday Morning Flow 10am
December 27- Playing with the Breath 4pm on Zoom
December 28- Focus on the Foot 5pm on Zoom (we’ll be using a tennis ball in some options)
December 29- Moon Salutation Class 7:30pm
December 30- Cleansing Power Yoga Class (let’s burn off anything we don’t want to bring into 2021) 4pm
December 31- New Year’s Eve Yin  4pm

Message to join the virtual Facebook group or to get the Zoom links
If you can’t make the class recordings will be available till early January. Message for more info.

Wishing you a beautiful holiday season
Warm Wishes
Denise

You Never Know What Others May Be Going Through

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.

What is Yin?

Yin is a yoga practice where we are applying healthy stress to connective tissue of the joints- tendons, ligaments, and fascia. We are not trying to stretch or strengthen the joints.

During a yin practice we hold poses longer than we do in other yoga classes. Generally, we will hold poses from 1-5 minutes.Because we are holding poses longer, slow, safe opening of the connective tissue is encouraged within the body.

Throughout a yin practice I will often remind you to round, release and relax. We want to work as far as we can go, but not further. We want to gain benefit, but not injure. As we move into a pose we want to find a place where we can stay.

Most poses in yin are done from a kneeling, seated or lying position. Many of the poses are similar to those we do in other classes. However, our focus is different as we hold these poses longer. Moving into the poses we want to come to an appropriate edge where the body naturally stops. We will then allow the body to find stillness. Throughout a pose we may check in with the body. As the body begins to open we may find we can naturally release a little deeper into a pose. Sometimes though, we might notice that we need to back off a little. Learning to listen to your own body and respect its needs is an important goal in any yoga practice.

While holding a pose we’ll try to be conscious of our attention. I will encourage you to note what is going on in the body. I will invite you to notice what you might be feeling. We will also focus on being aware of the breath. We’ll also try to notice if the mind wanders. If it does, no judgement, just gently bringing the attention back to body or breath.

When ready to come out of a pose I will cue you to gently return to a neutral position. Of course, one is always encouraged to come out of the pose earlier if needed.

Yin is very different from many other yoga practices. Though slower than some other practices it can be more challenging to some people. I had no interest in practicing yin for many years. My thought was that if I was going to be doing yoga that I wanted to be working hard, having challenge and working up a sweat. For me the idea of being so still for minutes at a time sounded horrible. However, when I eventually tried yin I found myself enjoying it. Additionally, I found my body benefitting it.

When in my studio I often offer yin as the last class of the evening. With the lights off and the flicker of candlelight it is a fabulous way to end the day. We use several props in this practice including bolsters, blocks and pillows. Many people bring blankets or eye masks to use throughout our practice and in final Savasana. I am often told that people sleep very well after some evening yin. I invite you to try a yin class soon and see if it might just be something you also enjoy.