No-one's watching

No-one’s watching… 👀

Do you have an Instagram account?

If so, you have probably seen many images of professional yogis doing crazy poses, in amazing locations, with perfectly sculpted bodies.

Well….. I’m sure you know this, but it’s worth repeating…

That’s not what yoga looks like 99.99% of the time!

Nor does it have to look like that.

If fact, very seldom are the professional yogis in these pictures actually doing a yoga practice at the time that the picture is taken. Instead, they have scouted out a nice location and are doing the pose solely for the purpose of the picture.

Speaking from experience, that is NOT yoga.

I have done my fair share of posing for the camera in crazy yoga poses, and it always leaves me feeling sore, as I am not properly warmed up, and it definitely doesn’t provide any form of mental relaxation or spiritual practice!

(Even the image above wasn’t a real yoga pactice! 🙈)

 

What actually matters?

My aim in writing this, is to ease any anxiety you may have about how your body will look when doing a yoga practice.

It doesn’t matter:

…if you touch your toes or not.

… what you’re wearing.

…what size and shape your body is.

…whether you’re tired.

…whether you’re stressed.

…whether you can do the ‘full pose’ or do an adapted version of it.

The only things that matter are:

…that you come to your yoga mat with an openness and acceptance to meet whatever comes up in your body and mind.

…that you attempt to breathe intentionally (even if you forget, then just come back to it).

…that you listen to your body, and learn when you can push harder, and when you need to back off.

 

My personal yoga journey

When I first started yoga, I definitely had more of a performance mindset than I do now. I even injured my hamstring by pushing too hard in single leg forward-folding/splits-type poses!

I’d like to think that I now use yoga as a way to calm my mind and find inner peace, even if I still love gaining physical strength from it.

I believe it’s absolutely OK to work towards physical benefits with a yoga practice, as long as it does not detract from the effects of yoga on calming the mind and reaching a higher level of self-acceptance.

That said…. I still catch myself having a craving for ‘achieving’ a particular pose sometimes!! 🤷‍♀️

When I notice this, I know it’s time for me to become a little more mindful with my yoga practice again, to focus on the breath and look LESS at Instagram! 😆

 

What about you?

What is your yoga practice like right now?

Stop for a moment to reflect on the feelings you experience before a yoga practice.

Is it openness to whatever may arise?

Or is there an expectation and slight worry about not being ‘able to do the poses’?

Doing this inner work is as much part of yoga as the poses themselves.

 

Let’s practice non-attachment

I invite you to pick an on-demand video class that is challenging for you, and to consciously work on being open to what arises in your body and mind.

It takes practice to let go of a performance mind-set.

During the challenging class allow yourself to give a real, sincere effort, but to let go of any judgement about whether you ‘achieved’ the poses or not.

Let’s open the diary, and plan in your next practice… 🙏

Thank you for reading my blog!

If you feel moved to try some yoga yourself (even if you are a complete beginner), then you can have a go at trying some on-demand classes completely for FREE!

Love,

Jolanthe Xx

Strength, Posture & Mindfulness

I’ll help you gain body confidence and contentment

with short, easy-to-follow yoga classes from your LIVING ROOM!

On-demand and LIVE

Check out what I offer!

I’m a Small Business

Give yourself the gift of self-care for a super affordable price, while supporting an independent, small business!

I enjoy getting to know each and every new yoga student – so can’t wait to meet you!

Love, Jolanthe x


Your Mind-Body Type

YOUR mind-body type

Have you ever compared yourself to others, and wondered why you are so different?

Perhaps it’s frustrated you that others seem to eat whatever they like and don’t change shape…

Perhaps you find it strange that others don’t enjoy the same things as you. “Why wouldn’t they enjoy running? I just love it so much!” you might think.

 

Can you think of other examples?

 

Wisdom from Aryuveda

Aryuveda is an ancient science of living from India which is closely linked with the yoga tradition. I absolutely love Aryuveda, as it makes intuitive sense to me.

This philosophy sees everyone as having a ‘Dosha’ which is the expression of their ‘mind-body type’.

There are three Doshas, and most people are a combination of two of these, with one Dosha being more dominant.

 

The Three Doshas are:

Can you see which one/two describes you?

– Vata: People who are creative, who swing from high energy to low energy quickly, who have a tendency to be slim, who sometimes forget to eat but really would benefit from eating regularly. When out of balance, Vata types have a tendency towards feeling anxious, too much weight loss, and insomnia.

– Pitta: People who are a little fiery, strong minded, determined and goal focussed. They tend to gain muscle quickly, but have a tendency to get over heated, in both body and in mind (think: hangry!). Pitta types get things done! But when out of balance, Pitta types can be a little over-bearing, and suffer from inflammatory skin issues.

– Kapha: People who are very grounded, warm and loving. This is the ‘mother-‘ or ‘father-earth’ person who you WANT to have as a best friend. Physically, Kapha types naturally hold a little more weight, and don’t naturally have a strong drive to do vigorous exercise. They generally have a very stable mental-state. When out of balance, Kapha types are prone to weight gain, extreme stubbornness and depression.

 

Balancing YOUR dosha

You may have guessed it already, but different doshas/ combinations of doshas will benefit from different lifestyle behaviours.

The Aryuvedic philosophy says that:

– Like attracts like, and

– Opposites create balance

 

For Example…

Creative Vata types

You’ll love a spontaneous lifestyle, the highs and lows of travelling and partying, and energetic exercise classes such as Zumba! You will love cold and light foods and beverages.

However, if you find yourself out of balance (burned out/anxious/inability to focus) then choosing the opposite will probably help you. For example, working on a predictable structure in your week, practicing a slower form of yoga, eating warm and wholesome foods.

Fiery Pitta types

You will be attracted to high intensity exercise like running or cross-fit and you’ll love eating curries! You’ll be go, go, go ALL the time!

However, if you find yourself a little out of balance (burned out/inflamed skin/uncontrolled frustration or anger), then choosing the opposite will probably help you. For example, choosing a more relaxing/mellow type of exercise, and cooling foods.

Grounded Kapha types

You’ll be attracted to a slow and steady life. You loooove your lie-ins, taking your time to socialise with loved ones and friends, and eating delicious and heavy foods.

However, if you find yourself a little out of balance (feeling unmotivated to make necessary changes, difficult to get out of bed, unwanted weight gain), then choosing the opposite will probably help you. For example, starting more vigorous exercise, getting up earlier and (I’m sorry to say) a bit of fasting…

 

How it sets us free…

What I LOVE about finding your own mind-body type is that you have permission to stop comparing yourself with others!

If you are a Kapha type and you compare yourself with a Vata type, then you are comparing apples and oranges. You were born different, and that’s OK!

We should each listen to OUR OWN bodies/minds and find the best ways to balance ourselves out so that we feel our happiest, healthiest selves.

For example; for some this will require doing LESS intense exercise, and for some it will require some MORE intense exercise.

 

You have a SUPER power

What get’s me so excited about this philosophy is the thought that every dosha has its own super power. And that’s so true for us all!

You Vata types are the creatives that bring us art and music!

You Pitta types are the fire-crackers that bring us cross-fit and meet deadlines!

You Kapha types are the grounded souls that keep it together when everyone els falls apart!

 

So, What are you?

Have you had an “Aha!” moment while reading this?

If you have realised which Dosha you have, or which two Doshas you have in combination, then why not see whether you feel in balance.

Using your new knowledge of what might suit your mind-body type, or what might help you get back to balance, you can choose a yoga practice!

Let’s open the diary, and plan in your next practice…

😁👇

Thank you for reading my blog!

If you feel moved to try some yoga yourself (even if you are a complete beginner), then you can have a go at trying some on-demand classes completely for FREE!

Love,

Jolanthe Xx

Strength, Posture & Mindfulness

I’ll help you gain body confidence and contentment

with short, easy-to-follow yoga classes from your LIVING ROOM!

On-demand and LIVE

Check out what I offer!

I’m a Small Business

Give yourself the gift of self-care for a super affordable price, while supporting an independent, small business!

I enjoy getting to know each and every new yoga student – so can’t wait to meet you!

Love, Jolanthe x


Actions matter, not Results

It’s your Actions that matter

In today’s world, it’s so easy to get caught up in the mindset of chasing measurable results.

(Or perhaps not chasing at all, if you feel the results are unattainable…)

 

It’s all around us!

Exams, work targets, weight targets, running times, images of crazy yoga poses on Instagram etc. etc. etc…

Our modern culture makes us believe that our self-worth lies in these outcomes….

However, yoga asks us to live for the action, not the results.

To take actions without thought for the outcome. To be open to success or failure. In yoga philosophy our self-worth is measured in our effort, not in the outcome.

Living in this mindset makes every thing you do feel more rewarding, and can ease any resistance you have to starting challenging things!

Whatever happens in the end, you put in the work!

 

For example…

– Going for a run… Whatever pace you had, you can enjoy the feeling of your blood pumping, the fresh air on your face and praise yourself for getting out of the house.

– Feeding your child… You focus on providing nutritious food and a nice environment. Even if your child throws most of it on the ground… you can let go of the outcome of actually amount of food eaten. (This is one I am working on! 🤬)

– Work projects… (Although your boss might disagree) you can focus on your clarity of focus, your enthusiasm and comradeship with colleagues, and let the results figure themselves out.

– And…. a yoga class! You can focus on the action of breathing and moving, stretching and strengthening, without worrying about what the poses look like. Without feeling you need to ‘achieve’ a pose.

 

Can you think of an example for you?

For me it’s hand-stands. In my personal yoga practice I always add a few drills to build shoulder, core and back strength for a handstand, but I’m never actually aiming to do a handstand.

Perhaps one day I’ll lift up into a hand-stand, or perhaps I’ll never do it. Either way, doing a hand stand doesn’t define me! And in my daily practice I still built more upper-body and core strength over time.

 

Ironically…

Ironically, the less you fixate on the outcomes, usually the more likely it is that eventually you will see the outcome in the long term!

Focussing on effort, social relationships and competence (rather than specific achievements like winning races), is what Sports Psychologists call ‘Intrinsic motivation.’

Interestingly, having stronger intrinsic motivation has been proven to correlate much better with long term participation in whatever health/exercise/sports behaviour was studied, and therefore it also correlates better with actual long term achievements! 🤷‍♀️

(See the Self-Determination Meta Theory of behaviour: https://selfdeterminationtheory.org/theory/)

 

So, ready to take action?

If you’ve been unmotivated to try a yoga class because you feel you “can’t do the poses as they’re supposed to look”…. then this is for you.

📣 LET GO! 📣

…of that achievement mindset, and simply breathe and move.

Let’s open the diary, and plan in your next practice…

Thank you for reading my mini blog!

If you feel moved to try some yoga yourself (even if you are a complete beginner), then you can have a go at trying some on-demand classes completely for FREE!

Love,

Jolanthe Xx

Strength, Posture & Mindfulness

I’ll help you gain body confidence and contentment

with short, easy-to-follow yoga classes from your LIVING ROOM!

On-demand and LIVE

Check out what I offer!

I’m a Small Business

Give yourself the gift of self-care for a super affordable price, while supporting an independent, small business!

I enjoy getting to know each and every new yoga student – so can’t wait to meet you!

Love, Jolanthe x