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How Yoga Saved My Life

I used to walk in fear.

Every step I took, thoughts raced through my mind.

Is someone going to stab me?

And even though that had never happened before, I had been assaulted on the street.

My body remembered. So did my brain.

And it wasn’t until I read The Body Keeps the Score that I fully understood the impact of not one, but several subsequent traumas that sent my already-anxious self reeling.

This was back in college. I was fit & went to the gym, but I still didn’t quite understand the connection between what surfaced in my mind & the terror in my body.

The disempowerment in my gait.

How I flinched when it looked like someone might reach out & touch me.

I remember after a yoga class at the campus rec center, I was struck.

It was challenging AND empowering.

Something opened up. I took more classes.

I went to a studio. I felt so safe & serene in the environment, the woodsy incense, soft lights.

It wasn’t overnight. I experienced a series of teeny-tiny shifts through rigorous practice.

When grad school came, I found heated power yoga and yoga CHALLENGES!

I found inquiry and meditation. I started questioning how and why I believed what I believed about myself. About how my life might go.

And many many many practices later…..

I find myself, walking through the world with my head held high.

With power in my step and love in my heart.

With radiant confidence.

And so so much more to GROW!

I say all this to let you know 3 things!

  1. Show up. Practice when you’re not feeling it. Sit when your mind is swinging like a damn monkey through the jungle. Commit with accountability & keep your word to yourself.

  2. It takes time. One of my favorite quotations of all time: “Healing is the sustained act of self love.” To sustain means that this is spread across a lifetime and occurs in a thousand incremental breakthroughs & breakdowns & frustrations & bliss.

  3. Do it from love, not from fear. Step into this scary process of healing work from a heart full of love for yourself, remembering that what we do for ourselves, we also do for others! The world benefits from you being free & loving & fully self-expressed. You’re sitting on a goldmine of gifts, & it’s time to share them. But in order to get there, you’ve got to clear a safe path & heal the past.

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