During the month of July I decided to take a break from teaching yoga, partly due to a trip to Europe which I had planned, as well as to give myself some space to consider my mental and physical health, my goals and my vision for the future. I was able to find perspective and ultimately find some clarity on what it is that I’m seeking. Just before I traveled abroad, I discussed partnering with a fitness space in Bryanston, Johannesburg, and for the month of August and beyond I will be hosting in-person yoga classes! This is very exciting as it is something I have been hoping to do for over two years, but I had not been able to take the next step in my yoga teaching journey.
One of the ways that I have found to be effective in bringing clarity and alignment between my daily life and my long term vision, is through affirmation. I thought I’d share a few of my affirmations with you, and hope to inspire you to create your own affirmations, which you may be able to use to bring focus to and breathe life into what might otherwise simply be ideas that have not yet been set in motion.
Affirmation 1: I am healthy
I’ve always focused on fitness, whole food, spending time with friends and family and other ways of living that strengthen one’s health. But I’ve also very often found myself enjoying rich food, alcohol, sugar and making decisions that do not support this goal. Of course we have to live our lives, to celebrate and make the most of our time, but I’ve decided to focus on being as conscious as possible when consuming food and dietary supplements, media, alcohol and so on. I feel that repeating this affirmation and visualizing myself as the healthiest version of myself, will increase my motivation to make the right decisions in the moment.
Affirmation 2: I am calm
Again, most people would tell you that I’m a calm person. But those who have worked with me in a corporate setting would tell a different story. I tend to be highly anxious and stressed out in pressurised situations. The practices of yoga, breathing and meditation have no doubt helped me navigate and manage these landscapes, in addition to running, sleep and other forms of energising and healing. It is usually when I don’t practice, forget to meditate and ignore my breath, that my nervous system simply switches into fight or flight mode, and stress becomes unmanageable. Using this affirmation, I hope to remind myself of the crucial importance of finding 5-10 minutes, ideally 2-3 times a day to take conscious breaths, realign myself and continue with the task at hand. What I found works well, it placing a post-it on the door frame of my office, which says “Take three deep breaths”, so that every time I leave my desk, I take a moment to ground myself in the present moment, and actively balance my nervous system.
Affirmation 3: My network is healthy and calm
A combination of the first two, projected outward. I believe that aligning yourself first is critical. I know better than most how it feels giving out advice on wellness, only to realise how exhausted and stressed out I actually am. It is certainly far more important to ensure that you are taking steps to improve and manage your health and stress, before offering advice to others. However, even if you are in a calm and balanced state, if the people you interact with are stressed out and out of balance, it will be more difficult to achieve your goals and to remain calm, in addition to the distress it causes you seeing people that you interact with and love, in such states. I feel it is very important to wish for harmony for those in your network, and as a result of such a mental focus, you may be more willing and more prepared to contribute and carry out actions to ensure that those around are also managing their energy and stress levels.
This month, I wish you the strength to open yourself up to possibility and to free yourself from doubt. I hope that you have the motivation to dedicate some time to thinking about your work/life/relationships, consider new possibilities, structure those possibilities into affirmations, form a plan and finally through intentional action, set in motion your vision, however simple or grand it may be.
If you have the time, join us in practising yoga! Details below:
Hybrid (Online & In-person) yoga classes (All times GMT+2)
Monday 630am – 730am Align | Level 1/2
An alignment centered class combining elements of strength, breath, mental focus and balance.
Wednesday 630am – 730am Flow Level 1
A vinyasa style class to manage stress, focusing on natural movement and rhythm.
Saturday 8am – 9am Power Flow Level 2
A strong class for those who have 2+ years experience or simply want to push themselves.
The Ridge Complex
25 Kildoon Rd, Bryanston, Johannesburg
About the venue:
- Limited off-street parking available
- Security guard monitoring on-street parking
- Studio is inside the ridge complex situated in a Cul De Sac
- Venue capacity 8-10 people
- Toilets and 2 showers available
- Pool available