Forgive me readers for I have been slack. It’s been 3 months since my last post. As many of you know it has been a busy few months at SoHo. I can only imagine that opening a second business is like having a second child. You know what to expect, what needs to be done, how to do it – after all, you’ve done it all before – but second time around you have the additional challenge of doing it while balancing on one leg and trying not to drop the first baby.
Despite encouraging my students to make self-care and relaxation a priority, I admit that my own health and wellbeing has taken a back seat in recent weeks. Surviving on too little sleep, having that extra coffee to get me through the day, teaching more and not making time for my own practice have taken their toll on my physical and emotional state.
This morning I woke up exhausted after a relatively good sleep. As I dragged myself out of bed and onto my meditation cushion I became aware of the heaviness of my eyes, the stiffness and tension in my body, and the incessant barking of the neighbour’s dogs. This was not going to be a ‘pleasant’ meditation experience. But as Eckhart Tolle’s dulcet tones reminded me, “It’s enough to accept what’s here now. Whatever you accept you go beyond.”
Fortunately I had already accepted that these past few months were going to be hard work. We all experience periods in our lives where any sense of work-life balance goes out the window. My strategy is to simply surrender to it, but ensure that there is a bright light at the end of the tunnel; an end point when and where I know I can re-focus on my own self-care and self-development.
By the time you read this I will have reached that point. I will be enjoying some time out with my family on the Sunshine Coast, getting my fix of the ocean and some well-earned rest & relaxation. In the meantime - as I sat through a particularly uncomfortable meditation - I acknowledged that today I needed to practice a little extra self-care to get me through the rest of the week.
Water is my healer and when I need nourishment I naturally seek out water in the form of a swim in the ocean, a walk by the river, or a bath in Magnesium salts. This morning I headed to my local outdoor pool for the first time this season and as I immersed myself in the temperate water I immediately felt a wave of relief come over me.
Swimming the first several laps my body felt like a lead weight and my breath was laboured, but after a few minutes the lightness returned and I felt more at ease gliding through the pool, feeling the coolness of the water on my skin and observing my breath as it settled into a rhythmic pattern.
After 20 minutes in the water the tiredness returned and ~ honouring the place I’m in right now ~ I called it quits (and devoured a much-needed coffee!). But just 20 minutes of self-care nourished my being and inspired me to write this post.
What do you turn to when you need to feed your soul? Understanding what nourishes you physically and emotionally is an important first step towards a self-care routine.
This week some gentle yoga will be on my agenda, and short daily mindfulness practices, as well as reading and studying for some exciting teacher training later this month. There will be lots of sleep, walking on the beach and swimming in the ocean. But most importantly I will be trying my best to take a break from the business of yoga. Of course that is when the juicy stuff happens and the chances are I will be at my most inspired. So watch this space for news of exciting new classes and workshops coming up in the next few months!
Love & light,