The pictures above:
Turning 35, myself at a young 18 on my first trip to Australia with my still best friend Cary. With my bunny pets aged 32 with my friend Caroul who became their foster mum when I left Australia in 2006 and with my two brothers at Padstow in Cornwall (my favourite place as a child) aged 10.
My life before Yoga
In this blog I share with you my own personal yoga journey to becoming a yoga teacher and the journey of self discovery that I took starting almost 25 years ago. I’m writing this blog to help people consider how yoga can help in them manage their health and inner peace in a practical way.
Lots of people (and I mean lots) say to me ‘Oh I’d like to try yoga, I’ve heard it’s really good for you’ once they discover I’m a yoga teacher. But I have to say sadly (I think) not many people actually make it to the mat. I do wonder what makes people come to yoga, why do they feel they need it and how they come to start their yoga journey? Often it may be a crisis in their life, they need to fix something or live in a different way to feel more fulfilled and happy.
I came across yoga when I was 21. I felt over – emotional a lot of the time ( as you do on your 20’s), I often felt overwhelmed and didn’t know how to arrive back to myself, to a place where I felt OK and at peace with what was going around me. Yoga, Relaxation and Meditation Classes changed all of that for me and continue to do so to this day.
I have been a yoga teacher for almost 8 years now and been a ‘yogi’ for over 25 years. My path to yoga started with a need to get through final exams at university for my sociology degree specialising in Criminal Justice, without going insane. I lived in a house with 8 people which at the time seemed normal but looking back I think it was quite an eventful to be in with eight 20 somethings!
My first Yoga classes
I met a lovely teacher in my first yoga classes with my friend Jenny, who has now also become a yoga teacher. This one of of my week quickly became one of the most important hours in order to bring an equilibrium into the rest of my week. Of course I had a few moments whilst in postures like shoulder stands, where I’d always end up breaking wind! Maybe my digestive system was balancing itself up!
But besides these little moments I began to feel different as I responded to life as it occurred around me. I started feeling an unfamiliar sense of calm in situations that normally would have angered me and I connected fairly quickly to a deeper wiser part of myself that I liked as it got me into less trouble. I had found my balanced and peaceful self, I felt strong and connected to a higher wisdom. These three benefits have been the key benefits of yoga for me over the years.
Leaving my practice for a few years
My students generally imagine that I practice yoga everyday and I am 100% calm and balanced all of the time. I have to bust this myth and say it is simply not the case. I’m like everyone else where I come and go from my yoga practice and it takes many different forms. Sometimes it is more physical but predominantly these days I prefer gentle yoga and meditation.
Back to the story….After leaving University I didn’t go back to yoga for a while. My parents got divorced at this time and it was a time of great change as I moved to Australia for the first time at the age of 24. I had been living with my then Australian boyfriend for a couple of years in the UK and I was keen to start my life in Australia when we could. Fast forward a couple of years of partying and travel and I crossed paths with yoga again minus my Australian boyfriend. At this stage I was also enrolled in a two year ParaPsychology and Energy Healing Course which I cautiously attended as I was pretty sceptical at this stage. Despite this, the course has had a huge influence on how I view life and on my teachings too. My teachings have slowly become a combination of yoga and healing which I’ll write about in next months blog.
Becoming a Yoga Teacher
I then discovered the yoga class which turned my path to becoming a yoga teacher. I found a Dru Yoga class and immediately knew this was the style of yoga that really worked for me. I experience Dru Yoga as a holistic from of yoga. Yes it make my body strong and healthy and that’s great. However the major difference is that it helps me tune back into my heart.
As a mostly intellectual person I found Dru Yoga helped me to tune back into nature with the Earth and Moon Sequences, The Energy Block Release sequences. I loved the intention of the postures, sequences and relaxations, how my class clearly related to clearing and balancing my energy field and the gentle movements which strangely were strengthening without pain or pushing too much in my body.
A Dru Yoga Teacher Training Course came up close to where I was living so I joined it with the clear intention of becoming a successful Yoga Teacher. I say this as being a yoga teacher is one of those professions where many struggle to make a living and feel they have to undercharge for their classes.
That’s a whole other blog but I was determined to be successful. I attended the training for one full weekend per month for two years. It was such a wonderful way to spend a weekend one per month and I enjoyed the training immensely. I also had a small yoga class which included my mum, auntie, cousin and mums friend for a year to practice my training.
The Birth of Soul Harmony Yoga in 2011
Soul Harmony Yoga was born after I qualified in 2011 and I began teaching publicly. I ran yoga classes, Yoga and Sound Workshops and a number of successful Holistic Health Workshops. (Below is a pic of myself and Anne running one of our sound workshops).
From my previous class and my new students I quickly noticed the benefits of my work. These included:
- Better Sleep on the night of their yoga class
- Reduction in back pain and a more flexible spine
- Feeling more relaxed in their day to day living experience
- Taking time for themselves to breathe and be
- Noticing their emotions and what was really going on for them without the noise of life
- Resetting their inner balance
I finished teaching face to face in the UK in 2016 and started my online yoga website Soul Harmony Yoga. This is my portal for all of my teachings, blogs and other inspirations as they come to me. It’s my latest baby and one that I am continuing to nurture and grow as more and more people join.
Start or continue your yoga journey with Soul Harmony Yoga
If you are thinking of starting your own home yoga practice I invite you to consider these things;
- Do you want a yoga class which is more physical exercise, specific alignment classes or a more holistic practice of relaxation and meditation as well
- Notice how you feel about the teacher of the classes – are they suited to what you are looking for
- Where can you fit yoga into your weekly life and what do you need to help you do this – a class that you can attend or a more personal practice using online materials at home
- Do you need a beginners home yoga practice? We have a beginners course where we teach in a 6 week course basic physical alignment, breathing in yoga and basic relaxation techniques
If you feel like you can relate to my journey and my style of teaching and would like to try out our classes I’ve created a four course Free Home Yoga Taster Classes so you can get a feel for my style of teaching. It is so important that you find a yoga style that suits what you are looking for rather than you trying to fit into something that doesn’t feel quite right.
I’m happy to reply to any questions you may have and have a chat about your own home yoga practice. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Until then happy yoga journeying and I wish you all the best.