I’m one week into my three-week European adventure, and I felt the pull to share what I have been up too. It’s all very well and good me always talking about ‘self-love’, but I realised I hadn’t shared my experiences of it for a while. Don’t just talk, walk!
This year has been hectic in the most magnificent and mind-blowing way. I’m in such immense gratitude for the abundance that has flowed in for 2017. When you love what you do, it does not even feel like you are working. However, it is still super important to still take regular time off. It’s easy to keep going with a full diary (and working weekends) when my work brings me a lot of joy. There is only so much one person can give before the fuel starts to run out. When my schedule is full on I, appreciate my down time even more.
Taking time off is when I can refuel and top up my Soul cup. Then I am in a better position to assist others. Just because I live a very holistic and spiritually lead life and my work is in the same realm does not make me immune to burn out. Light bodies are even more susceptible to crashing more quickly. Especially when we are constantly giving to others, holding space and transmuting the density, this can get draining quickly. When I work for myself, there is no one else to share the load. If I don’t do the job, no one else is there to do it.
I’ve written before that the amount of giving time should equal the amount of downtime. Sometimes I don’t even need to match it I can recharge quickly by just recognising I am flopping. Then I park up on the couch or my healing table to rest. It’s all in the intention. Knowing it’s time to give back to yourself and stopping plugs me into the fast charge setting.
Here I am doing just that, recharging in the UK to visit and reconnect with my roots & the sacred land. Already I feel light and spacious. When I’m busy, I can get quite forgetful with so much going on at once. This past week has wiped the fog from my mirror. My thoughts are clear, and I can remember the most insane small details about my past when catching up with friends. It’s so good to switch off the over-thinking side of my brain. Now I can see how scrabbled I get when the pressure is on, and a reassessment of scheduling is in order.
With such a manic year so far I hadn’t had time to plan anything for this trip. Apart from a quick long weekend in Norway for an Energy Mastery Retreat with Lee Harris. I did kind of ‘just turn up & see what happens.’ This theory has worked quite well, and I’m managing to see a lot of people at short notice.
In between catching up’s, it’s been all about yoga this past week! I know my whole life in Australia is all about yoga, but this time it’s different. I have the space to be super leisurely about when or where I practice. Not just trying to squeeze in a class just because it’s the only time slot I can, then being so exhausted it turned out to be counter-productive. Sheffield yoga has taken off. I have a yoga buffet to choose from and no real time restrictions.
I was so blessed to be asked to teach my Soul Serenity Yin Yoga & Meditation Retreat at Amy’s Ashram in Dore. The Ashram has the most amazing community and vibe. I love teaching in small studios as they are so personal and intimate. It was such a treat to bring my love of yoga back to my hometown. The whole morning and the guests were sensational. Gosh, we could easily do a retreat every Sunday!
The yoga didn’t stop there. I’ve practised yoga every single day since I arrived. What a treat! (This might sound bonkers, but full-time yoga teachers will get me.) The classes I’ve taken have ranged from gentle stretches in the local sports centre (peak posture was three leg dog), beautifully nourishing hot yoga at a boutique Ashram which was divine and a crazy fast paced hot vinyasa where I thought my head would explode.
Visiting new studios is always an adventure. It’s nice to see how unique each one is with all their small touches and finishes. From the modern, cosy loft full of natural daylight at Amy’s. The vast fairy lit red walls with Chakra symbols at Hot Yoga Sheffield with many treatment rooms, cafe and corridors it was like a day spa. Quite the contrast to the windowless group fitness room at the local sports centre that is underneath the swimming pool (Smells of chlorine but has an ambience about it). Each venue has it’s own charm and vibration. You don’t even need a fancy studio with all the bells and whistles. The gentle stretch yoga was held in a community centre hall which has loads of space & windows overlooking a garden.
Trying different styles of yoga is always fascinating and humbling. The hot vinyasa here is very different to the class I practice in Perth. We were thrown straight into single leg Chaturanga Dandasana from the go get. No options for modifying or beginners. When I asked if I needed a block I was told ‘the class moves too quick to use blocks but feel free to have one.’ Wow, she wasn’t kidding, the class moved fast and at 35˚C was super challenging.
It is, what it is and I did as much as I could. I sat out a lot after the first 20 minutes of the 60-minute class as I was done (or cooked). It takes strength to sit out as the ego can push you to keep going. Probably didn’t help I’d had a few cheeky G & T’s the night before. (It’s okay to love yoga/healing & still drink gin!) The gin sweat was burning my eyes #burningboozesweat. If the heat wasn’t up, I could have faired better as just used my inner fire. (Or gin fumes!) Note to self. Gin and hot yoga are not friends.
The Hot Hatha class at the same studio was a dream, and I smiled my way through the whole 75 minutes. There were options for different abilities, and the class flowed with deep long breaths. I vibed with the teacher’s energy, and she was encouraging without being pushy or in your face. We even rounded off the class with a bit of arm balancing.
Next, I tried a ‘Hot Yin.’
Okay, I will admit I was sceptical about the whole Hot Yin thing as it goes against the philosophy I learned in my teacher training. To feel the fascia reforming yin yoga is best done when the body is cold and before a yang practice. (The studio did have yin before Yang, which is great) I went along with an open mind and heart. No expectations. I attentively listened to the thorough briefing the teacher gave me when I told him I hadn’t taken a hot Yin before.
Turns out that as we are in England ‘hot yin’ was room temperature by Australian standards, so there wasn’t any sweating. It was just nicely warm as it was freezing outside (yes it’s June, but England sucks for summer warmth till August). I’d remarket it as straight up Yin Yoga.
The class was deeply meditative & a bit different from the yin I teach. It is always nice to experience various teaching styles. The teacher had a lovely, calm voice. I felt very chilled by the final savasana I fell asleep and caught myself snoring. If it weren’t for the next class coming in, I’d have been there all night. Good job I woke up or else I’d have accidentally ended up in the brain exploding hot vinyasa again.
So far so good!
Overall it has been a great first week back in the UK. It is always lovely to catch up with my family and friends. I’ve successfully remembered how to drive a manual car and not get lost yet. Next challenge will be getting myself around London for the day and a driving adventure into the Peak District for more cakes and catch up’s. (Maybe some more gin, it’s quite the big thing here Gin Clubs. I may be holistic but all in moderation.) Then there is my Norwegian Adventure!
Current stress level zero, brain function 100%, rested, relaxed, yoga every damn day and full of joy. Who can not like annual leave? I’m happy I made the call to travel for pleasure this year and set myself some proper boundaries for work-life balance.
Until next time, love,