It feels like years that I haven’t updated YIOM. Life does indeed get the best of us sometimes! But I am excited to announce we have a guest post today from one of our YIOMers – Flissy from Om Chantress. I asked her to write about her month of May, a difficulty she encountered and how yoga helped her. Hope you enjoy reading as much as I did!
I’ve been practicing yoga for about ten years. I teach yoga five days a week and yoga has cemented itself as a personal lifestyle. As such, yoga is wrapped up as a normal part of my everyday life, moving and stretching, teaching, reading, meditating. Reflecting on the past month, one instance stands where my Yoga practice served me in life off the mat.
This month I took a 32-hour intensive with Rachel Brice, a highly influential tribal style belly dancer. It was tons of fun, a dream come true, really, to have the opportunity to study closely with a dancer I have admired since I started belly dancing six years ago. It was also hard work, both physically demanding and mentally challenging. The intensive culminated in a test. It wasn’t required, except that it is a prerequisite for the next level of training. I had such a fantastic experience that, of course, I want to continue with her training, and that meant passing the test.
I’ve never taken a test in belly dance before. I have enjoyed that one of the perks of being an adult is that you don’t really have to take tests anymore. At least not the multiple choice, write a paragraph about XYZ kind that I left behind when I graduated from college.
The truth is that it seriously stressed me out. Looking back, now, it was pretty unnecessary how worked up I was about it. I was well prepared and knowledgeable about the material. I’m an experienced dancer. But sitting in the room with 40 other dancers waiting for the tests to be handed out, I was a mess! What saved me? Pranayama.
It’s the first breath technique I teach my students because it is easy and effective. Inhale: 1, 2, 3, 4. Exhale: 1, 2, 3, 4. I had mala beads with me and moved a bead on each exhale. Round and round I went inhaling and exhaling nice and smooth in spite of my desire to have my own internal freakout. When the test came around, I was focused and at ease, and can happily report that I have passed Rachel Brice’s 8 Elements ™ Phase 1: Initiation.
I love the subtle ways yoga weaves in and around my everyday life, and maybe for that reason, it’s easy to forget that I have many, and sometimes even very simple tools to help deal with everyday problems. How has your yoga practice served you?
Thanks Flissy for sharing with us! Hope you all have a wonderful week and Happy May!