I wrote this when I was in the throws of one of my negative downward cycles and I am pleased to report I have now come out the other side but I thought I would still post this as it shows that our emotions can change over the course of a few hours or days so we shouldn't panic too much. Sit with the emotion without wallowing in self pity because who knows what is around the corner.
It is Saturday and I think that perhaps my period is due, or at least I hope that is the problem. I ran out of my wonder pills (Pukka Womankind) which could account for the past few days. I have started beating myself up again, letting the negative voice in my head run wild.
Firstly, I taught a yoga class on Thursday and one of the participants was a fellow yoga teacher which completely threw me off. I shouldn’t have let this happen, she wasn't there to make my life difficult or to judge me, she probably just wanted to go to a class and switch off rather than doing it by herself. I started to worry about getting the Sanskrit names right or whether she would question my sequencing. This worry in turn impacted on my ability to teach a good class, people can sense when you don't feel comfortable and at one point my mind went blank and I couldn't think of the name of a posture in English or Sanskrit. I was glad when the class was over which is ridiculous, over the past few weeks I have really enjoyed teaching there and my confidence can't rely on who is or isn't in my class.
Yoga is about being for everyone, not just people that aren’t yoga teachers. I think my learning from this is that I need to continue to study and practice so that I am more comfortable being a teacher so that external situations no longer impact upon my abilities to teach well. I know I can do this well, I have been told by someone else that my class was the best one they have ever been to. I can do this, I just need to believe it fully and completely.
What else has gone wrong? Well, the last two days I have felt a bit blue, I couldn’t really put my finger on it but today particularly I felt crap. I wanted to cry, as if there is something I need to get out. However I met up with a friend for a coffee and chatted about various unrelated things and I now feel back to normal. I have been told that I have a tendency to spend too much time on my own and I think they might be right. It is fine to be alone and healthy not to need to constantly be around others but I also need to be careful of doing it too much. However, it can lead me to ponder things and get caught up with negative thoughts. I guess when there is something to work on this is positive as you don’t want to mask problems with idol chit chat but at the same time, it is good to break these cycles. Lesson here: when I start to feel a bit yuk I need to seek out company rather than retreating into myself.
Third and final point for the week, I think I worry that may be a self centered bitch. Looking back over the past week I don’t think I have done anything for anyone else, not very yogi of me. It may be just because I am viewing myself trough negativity tinted glasses but I am all about me the majority of the time. I realise that this is human nature but it doesn’t make it right. I had this discussion with a friend as we thought about homeless people and how we all just try and push them away, someone else's problem, rather than showing any compassion for what is an awful way to have to live. What has happened to us when we don’t even acknowledge other peoples suffering? We use our phones as a form of a filter, staring at our screens instead of seeing the issues in front of our very eyes.
The reason I started thinking about this was because I was on the Instagram feed of someone from my yoga Teacher training. A beautiful couple inside and out, who are truly altruistic in their approach to life. They have been doing beach clean ups and community yoga classes where they donated the profits to the locals. It got me to thinking, what have I done for anyone? I am so focused on building a successful business and making a living I have forgotten the purpose of yoga. Although making money to live is obviously important, I need to keep a roof over my head but I can also do things that help others at the same time.
Yoga is meant to be about being a journey of self discovery and a chance to look within, I am worried that my classes have become more about the purely physical and lost some of its essence. I am going to get my books out and get back to the heart of yoga.
I haven’t managed to have my own practice this week and I think that has compounded my problems. I have been meditating (badly) but I miss the mind-body connection that comes from the asana. I love the philosophy of yoga and its whole ethos so I am getting back to it this week. I am going to incorporate more of the other 8 limbs into my life and my classes and be more authentic. Maybe I am slightly selfish at heart but I can make efforts to change this. Notice those around me in need and see what I can do to help. Giving is so much more rewarding that receiving and I have been missing out on this. I going to aim to do one charitable thing each day (no matter how small) and see what a difference this makes to myself (oops selfish again) and those around me.