When I first started doing yoga, I really hated the experience but felt great afterwards. I "made" myself go to a yoga class, much like people begrudgingly drag themselves to the gym. I struggled and pushed through poses, and couldn't wait until it was time for savasana. It was the same when I first started meditation. I was restless, bored, anxious and could not wait until the 20 minutes (or sometimes 10 minutes) was over. A few years later, there came a turning point when I stopped thinking of self-care as "punishment" or saying that I didn't have time. Now, I looked forward to spending time with myself in a nourishing way.
Can you "do" self-care while "being" in self-warmth? Is your yoga and meditation practice rigid, goal-oriented, and frustrating? Or can you simply enjoy being in your body, allowing spaciousness in your experience, and staying curious? In self-warmth, there is a sense of joy and delight in your being without an inner critic telling you to "do"-- do it right, better, or more. This happens when we feel safe to be as we are-- which takes practice! Family Constellation facilitator Sarah Peyton's refers to this as shifting from the left hemisphere of the brain (logical, getting things done) to the right hemisphere (relational).
And of course, how we relate to ourselves may be the same in how we relate to others. When you are caring for others, can you be more in your warmth rather than just doing? It's not easy, and the key is practice.
Wishing you lots of self-warmth in May!
Season 3 of Chiang Mai wrapped up like a box full of treasures. How wonderful to have so much enthusiasm at our events, classes, retreats, and at Jai Thep Festival! I am truly honored to be part of this inspiring community. I also said a heartfelt goodbye and thanks to Yoga Kuukan, the studio I taught at for 2.5 years. They will now move to Japan! And speaking of which, I am on my way to the Kansai region for a week. In addition to visiting my grandparents' gravesite and reconnecting with my aunt and uncle (after +15 years!) I'll be researching retreat venues in Kyoto. If all goes well, I'm hoping to offer a retreat in the spring or fall 2020.
For now, it's time for some spring cleaning and springing forward! For someone who isn't *ahem* always tidy, I do enjoy my closing ritual as I prepare to leave Chiang Mai for two months. Going through my closet, cupboards, documents and purging what I don't need. I also wipe, scrub, and vacuum as many surfaces as possible. I had no idea how many dust bunnies were living in my A/C filter! And not even paying rent!
Such a sense of satisfaction to clear, cleanse, and honor my space as a transition and opening into the next cycle. It's a bit like what self-care tools do for our mind and body. GETS RID OF THE INTERNAL CLUTTER— all that is old, rigid, and stuck. This then helps us re-set, re-pattern and let go of our stress, conditioning, and old stories.
How are you giving yourself some spring cleaning?
Hanuman Yoga Retreat
Tammy is a location independent yogi.