I was at a workshop this weekend and one of my assignments was to think about some self-help tools for yoga teachers. We give a lot of ourselves when we teach, so we do need to be mindful of replenishing what is sent out.
The timing couldn’t have been better… after the most intense week of juggling a full-time job, teaching classes and squeezing in some self improvement, I was the perfect person for the assignment. Here are my thoughts, based on my own experience. I would love to hear from you if you have anything you want to add.
I think it all comes down to taking the time to idenitfy the things that make it easier for you to get in touch with the best version of yourself. Ofcourse ultimately no “thing” or action can fill in for something that comes from the mind and heart, but its nice to have some props when we need it.
Make some space
Identify a space that you can call your own. It doesn’t have to be a lot, maybe its just a corner of your bedroom. Make it simple, comfortable, and have a few things in there that give you joy. And if its not big enough to do yoga, take the time to at least sit or lay there for a few moments between activities.
Make a mini practice that you love.
We all have trouble areas in our bodies and know that some poses make us feel sooo good. Make a little sequence for your self. On days when you cannot get a full class in, are cranky, or need a little refreshment you can get right to it. Having set sequence will get rid of any procrastination, decision making, and allow you to get a little more meditative.
You make want to make a couple based on different times of the day or energy levels.
Eat a snack
If we really listen to our bodies we will find that we want to eat something different everyday. Some foods can satisfy you physically and mentally (I know we all have that experience). Keep them on hand to avoid getting h-angry or running your fuel tank to empty.
Smell something nice
Keep handy a little essential oil. One that makes you want to take bigger and a bigger breaths! A couple of drops in your palms or in a scent diffuser will transform you. Incense works too.
I also find that my favorite teas work great. In addition to the hydration the herby aromas work to uplift, calm and restore.
Words bring pictures to my mind. They take me away from the physical moment into a very rich place. If you enjoy reading make the time for a few paragraphs or pages. To me its an exercise in letting someone else hold the reigns and show me something new. You will find you feel a little more nourished when you put it down.