Monday, July 6, 2015

It's All About Balance

I am someone who, when having an idea or setting a goal, is determined to accomplish it.  The studio is a perfect example of this.  I knew from very early on in my yoga practice that I would teach and open a studio.

It took me nearly ten years to achieve this goal, but I did.  In the ten years prior to opening, I was continuously working on myself and on plans for the studio that has developed into an amazing place for people to come to, practice their yoga and change their lives day by day as I continue to do each day with myself.  Aside from being a mother, it has been one of the toughest things I have done in my life.  And like motherhood, it has been most rewarding.

This past March, I came up with the idea to practice 100 days of yoga in 100 consecutive days.  I am unsure as to what intrigued me enough to commit to this, but I found myself easily showing up each day and happily practicing side-by-side many of you who continued on with your practices.

During this time, I also decided to cut back my sugar intake as I, very easily and much too often, find myself consuming more sugar in a day than food of high nutritional value. It was relatively easy for me to do this because I was already practicing so much yoga and feeling so good that it seemed almost automatic to give up my sugar habit.  I found myself very clear minded and able to be more efficient, getting things done with more ease and productivity.
I was in a great place, feeling strong and accomplished.

At about 60 days in, I found myself questioning whether to continue or not.  At the time, I thought I was just hitting a wall and I expected it to pass.

But, after having two major studio events on back-to-back weekends and a few weeks where I had to double up on my teaching schedule, I found that my life was completely out of balance.  I hadn't sat down with my family in over a month for dinner.  Bill was picking up too much of kid responsibilities and although he was willing to do it, I noticed it was affecting his work productivity.   My kids where often asking when I would be home.  And at the ages they are at, 14 and 15, they are usually happy when they have free time at home without mom.  So, I knew this was something to pay attention to.

It was when I spent Mother's day in bed for most of the day exhausted and sleeping, I realized that I needed to make a decision to be better for myself, my family and the studio and students.

In yoga, we talk about three main things: Strength, Balance and Flexibility.  These exist within the physical body as well the mental and emotional bodies.  If you are working through an injury, you may not have the physical strength you'd like, but your gain comes by using your mental strength by showing up and working your best and your body will follow.  If you have a strong body, but limited flexibility, you create better balance for your body by learning how to use your strength to gain greater flexibility.

I had the strength and endurance to see these 100 days through, but I was losing overall balance and I had to decide to be courageous enough to use greater flexibility and change the direction of my original goal.

So at day 72, I made the decision to change gears.

I had completed 66 days of yoga in 72 days. During this time, I had participated and completed in the studio's 30-day challenge.  I participated in the studio wide "Grow Out Of Your Comfort Spring Challenge", practicing without water, doing a double, and wearing a bra top instead of full tank!!
I decided to celebrate what I did accomplish in these days and to continue on with a more reasonable yoga practice and connect with what I had lost touch with.

Here are a few of those moments that created a better balance for me: 
  • Spending some time with my amazing nieces and nephews
  • Going to the theatre with my daughter, Emma!  
  • A day trip with Bill! Here we are wishing our son, Jack, good luck on his Chemistry exam.  
  • Thursday night soccer games! Love how the boys' coach has the team run to the parents side line after each game!