Tag Archives: coaching

Change

India is now in its third day of lockdown and the ashram is mirroring what is going on outside.  While the people in the ashram have been pretty much isolated for a while now the government and health department have concerns over the number of people here and so did an inspection today.  Checking to ensure that similar procedures are being followed to the rest of the country in lockdown. “2 metres” is becoming a new mantra!

I’ve been speaking to a few people this last week about change – we are going through a period of unprecedented change in the world just now and we need to start doing things differently.  For some, change is not comfortable but it is part of the cycle of life.  Yin and yang, as one phase ends a new phase begins.  Sometimes change is within our control, sometimes it is not.

I was speaking to one person here at the ashram, dissatisfied with her life currently and wanting a complete change.  I asked her what she was doing about changing her life – she said she couldn’t do anything.  She was due to fly back to Germany this week but due to the lockdown and cancellation of flights coming in to the country she isn’t going anywhere just yet.  So she’s frustrated, she feels stuck, she misses being able to go to the beach here too.  She’s worried about losing her job if she has to stay here longer.  I asked her what would happen if she lost her job, what would she do?  She said she would look for a new job.  I suggested that this might be an opportunity to make changes to do something different but she didn’t seem convinced!

I know so many people in similar positions, they just keep doing the same thing over and over again yet still wanting things to change.  And then something happens that forces them to make a change – some recognise that opportunity to change, others just keep on trying to do the same things and getting frustrated, angry, hankering back to the ‘good old days’

For some, they are not looking for change, they are quite content breezing through life when something forces change upon them.  Again they have two choices – some adapt, seize opportunities to do things differently, others need to be pulled along, some with gentle leading, some dragged kicking and screaming.

How do you react to change?

What is happening in the world right now is making us all sit up and take notice that things have to change.  The planet needs to take a breath and we need to think how we can do things differently so that we look after the planet and each other – live in a balance.  I am heartened to see people starting to make changes, some stepping out of their comfort zones to do so.  Businesses forced to make changes that previously they would have said weren’t possible.  But rather than just trying to live as normal a life as possible is it time to create a new normal?

I know you are already having to do things differently to normal but what are you going to consciously change or do differently this week?

How do you want your life to be?  What one thing can you do this week that makes a difference to your daily life and takes you a step closer to how you want to live your life?  Change doesn’t need to be a big bang and often isn’t.  Making one small change every week can amount to big things over time.  Times like this can feel overwhelming and like we don’t have any control but you still have so much freedom to make choices – choosing to eat healthily, making exercise or meditation part of your daily routine, learning something new.  How many times in the past have you said “I wish I had more time to do x, y or z” Now we have time at home are you using it to do any of these things?  There are so many possibilities and this is a big opportunity to shake your life up and reshape it.  Don’t just do what you’ve always done but in a slightly different way.  Take time and think, then take action rather than just reacting.

For some of you learning or developing your yoga practice has been on your list of things to do & I am delighted to see so many fantastic yoga teachers I know offering their classes online.  I know for some this has meant stepping out of their comfort zone but they are adapting and finding new ways to do things to help people maintain their practice and stay fit and healthy. I’m not able to offer classes online just at the moment (other exciting things are being worked on!) so I’ve listed some fabulous teachers below who are live streaming their classes.

For those of you reading my blog that worry about going to a class in person because you’re ‘not flexible enough’ etc, no excuses now you can try in the comfort of your own home.

Stay safe and well

Om Shanti

🙂

Yoga Classes Online:

Julie Hanson & Karen Naismith @ Seasonal Yoga Academy

Carla Webster @ Prana Yoga Studio

Alison o’Donnell – Easy like Sunday Mornings, Sundays 9.30am – Text NAMASTE to 07771 867582 & Alison will send you details

Mark RussellKridaka Yoga

Finding Time

So many people say to me that they really want to do something but don’t have the time.  My response is always the same – if you really want to do it you’ll find the time.  The question is how much do you really want to do this thing?

Whether it’s getting to an exercise class, eating healthily, making time for friends or family, learning a new skill, finding time for yourself.  Work takes up so much of our time and so our “free time” is extremely precious.  But do we act as if it is as precious as it is?  Do we fritter the time away – wonder where the weekend’s gone when we’ve binged on the latest boxset and then we beat ourselves up because we really wanted to get to the gym/out for a walk in the fresh air/spend time with a friend……

Let’s put things into perspective:

There are 168 hours in a week

  • If you sleep for 8 hours per night that leaves you with 112 hours
  • You might work for 40 hours a week, deducting this leaves you with 72 hours.

72 hours of free time, that’s more than the hours you work in the week!!  It’s 3 whole days!!  What could you do with all that time?

Okay, so you might work more than a 40hour week, you might have a long commute which eats into your non-work time, you might need more than 8 hours sleep a night (and you might need less giving you some more free time!) and you need to eat within some of that time.  Sit down and work out how much free time you actually have, then consider how you spend it.  Do you spend it wisely?  Take 5 minutes out of your day to figure out how you spend your time and how you could use it more wisely.

I’ve spent the last year changing my life around to work more flexibly so I have time to do the things that matter to me.  But that still means getting up early and doing meditation, sometimes going to an early morning yoga classes at 6:30am, studying late into the evening.  My yoga practice matters to me because it helps me develop for both my teaching and for my self-development.  Learning is also important to me, again for my teaching and for my self-development, so I’d rather spend time learning than watching TV.

Where can you make changes in your life to fit in the things you really want to do?  Can you get up 20 minutes earlier to get in some exercise?  Can you utilise a train commute for learning something new?  Is your life working for you or are you working for your life?  How committed are you to doing the things that you say matter to you?  Will you look back on your life wishing you’d watched more netflix?

I’m not suggesting that you need to fill all your time but if there are things you want to do you have to make time for them.  That might mean saying “No” to some things and prioritising.  I believe whole-heartedly that if you really want to do something you will make the time for it.  Do you keep putting things off saying “when I have more time”,  “when the kids are older”.  Yes, we need to consider events in our lives, but where can you make even the smallest bit of time to do the things that matter to you.  Even if it’s small steps that start you on the path.

What could you do with 3 whole days?  What will you do with that time?

New Years Resolutions

The start of a new year, a blank slate, an opportunity to make changes.  I love the start of a new year, closing the door to the old year and stepping into the unknown: 365 days ahead of opportunities, new challenges, new discoveries and adventures.

I’ve long since given up on setting resolutions though – so many years of setting unattainable resolutions that fall by the wayside by mid-January.  The majority of new year’s resolutions fail within the first 2-3 weeks because people suddenly make drastic changes without getting the mid fully on board – joining the gym/diet groups to be fitter, healthier, lighter, stronger then the initial enthusiasm wears off, it’s winter and you just want to hibernate, eat comforting food and stay at home.  We’ve suddenly pushed ourselves right out of our comfort zone, which is exactly where we need to be to make changes, but if it’s too much too quickly the mind just wants to take the quickest route back to the comfort zone – picking up a takeaway/cake/wine/beer/ etc etc on the way!  And then there’s the feelings of failure kicking in – the negative chatter, the downward spiral, before we know it we’ve eaten more cake, drank more wine, missed the gym sessions, we’re beating ourselves up even more!

Although I don’t set new years resolutions anymore I still love to plan and set goals, but not just yet.  In traditional Chinese medicine winter is considered a time for recharging, restoring and reflecting rather than taking action.  Definitely not the time to be making radical changes to diet or lifestyle.   Instead of resolutions I like to set some intentions for the year ahead that I can then build on as the year progresses.  As winter is a time for reflection it’s the perfect time to ask yourself some searching questions so that when spring comes you’ve got some seedlings to start tending.

As I was reflecting on 2017 a lesson that kept popping up for me was remembering to stay present, enjoy the here and now as the present is all we have.  Last year is now memories, the future unknown. I have to find a balance between setting my intentions and then relaxing and letting the universe take over.  So I set aside some planning time – time specifically dedicated to reflection, daydreaming and manifesting.  An afternoon or an evening, I get cosy, light a candle, make a pot of tea, put on some inspiring music, reflect, dream, & let my imagination run wild.

So grab your notebook and set yourself a bit of dream time.  Some questions to prompt you in reflecting:

  • What did you achieve in the past year?
  • What worked/didn’t work and what you can learn from the experiences?
  • Are there patterns that keep repeating? What needs to change to stop the patterns repeating
  • What would be good to take forward into 2018, what can you let go of?
  • What do you dream of doing? Let your imagination free for a while.  Let go of the ‘buts’ that stop you and let your mind be free to wander.  What steps would you need to take to make some of this a reality?

As you reflect on these you can then start to build up a bigger picture and sense of direction over the winter months so that when spring arrives and the energy starts to increase you can start planting seeds to nurture and grow over the summer months.  You’ll then be reaping the rewards later in the year.

Whatever your intentions you can start making small changes, If it’s to be healthier committing to adding a few more veggies to your diet.  Maybe some gentle exercise – going for a winter walk, some gentle restorative yoga.  By starting small & taking gradual steps you can get the mind on board much more easily, it doesn’t feel like big scary change.  It makes staying on track much easier and as the small changes become habits you can start adding more changes through the year, building and building.

So what intentions are you setting this year?  What about the intention to look after yourself, self-care, nurture and nourish?

Come and join me for some yoga where you’ll have time to relax, restore and reflect:

Tuesdays Restorative 8-9:15pm & Thursdays Yin 8-9:15pm (Starts 18th January) bot at Seasonal Yoga Academy, Darnley Street, Glasgow, G41 2SE

Plus, sign up to my monthly newsletter to be kept up to date with details of my mini retreats, day retreats, yoga holidays and yoga and meditation workshops.