This week’s blog entry was written by guest author Sarah Smith. Sarah is a graduate of Whole Life Yoga’s 200 hour yoga teacher training program and a student in our advanced training. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Communication is powerful. Just like the knife that can be used in a beneficial way to prepare food for nourishment, or a surgery to heal the body, or used against some one to harm them, communication can be positive or negative.
Sometimes when I am leading a yoga class I will bring the class to standing and ask them to close their eyes and think of one thing they love about their body. A few more asanas later, coming back to standing, I will ask them to say one kind thing to their body. At the end of the practice just before ‘namaste’ I will ask them to think of one thing they are grateful for or appreciate about their body. Other times I will ask them to think of something they love about themselves. Not surprising is how many people come up to me later and say how hard that is for them. They are unable to think of one thing they love about their body or their self.
In our daily life how others speak to us has a powerful affect on us. People who are our well wishers, are encouraging and point out our gifts and talents empower us in our endeavors. People who invalidate, criticize, judge can throw us into a downward spiral that takes the wind out of our sails and can make us feel as if the life is being sucked right out of us.
Our internal dialogue is incredibly important. We sometimes get into patterns of thinking that affect us in ways that we don’t realize. “I have a bad knee” versus “I have a knee that is trying to heal itself. I am so grateful for the healing power of my body”. We may find ourselves mentally focusing on our ‘failures’, thinking they define who we are. This life, this body did not come with a manual. Maybe taking the word failure out of our vocabulary and replacing it with ‘great lesson’ would put us back in the driver’s seat.
Notice what you would like to have others say to you, and begin to give that to yourself. Words and thoughts that are kind, loving and honoring help our bodies to heal, and ourselves to grow into the spiritual beings that are who we truly are. It takes practice, but that is why we call it yoga practice, not yoga perfect.
Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series. A KILLER RETREAT is available for preorder now from Whole Life Yoga. The first book in the series, MURDER STRIKES A POSE is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and book sellers everywhere!