I started this vlog series as a practice in vulnerability. It’s time to put myself out there and at the same time offer a demonstration of what I do as an equanimity coach. I expected this process would take a week.
Sunday: Draw some cards and determine the poses that express those cards for me
Monday – Tuesday: practice for a couple of days,
Wednesday: video record my practice
Thursday: write my reflection
Friday: revise, edit, and polish
Saturday: post the blog and video.
And it will probably look like this for the next one in this series. However, there is always a learning curve on the first endeavor in any project.
The major thing I learned is that I don’t write the sequence, I allow it to pass through me. I had been afraid that I would try to avoid vulnerability if I wrote my own affirmations based on the cards. So, I recorded myself reading the cards as they were. In a way, I was letting the author of the cards coach me directly. However, the intention of the card is to connect with that part of us that needs the wisdom of the card and then take us through to the other side. In the pose, I only wanted to affirm the truth. The aspects of the card that were of doubt and suffering kept pulling me out of the meditation. So then I didn’t want to practice. I procrastinated and found reasons to drag Monday and Tuesday’s practice out for several days.
In the meantime, I coached my first non-classmate coaching session. I was nervous and had avoided this experience as well. There’s an excitement that could be anxiety around an intuitive coaching session, because there’s nothing to prepare for. I can’t write anything ahead of time because I don’t know what will happen. What if the client receives nothing of value from the session? That’s kind of scary. And in this session, I was reminded that I don’t need to prepare or pre-write anything because I’m not the one doing the work. It is happening through me.
And so I return to this self-coaching project, reminded that if I allow my ego-self to take a backseat, I can create some embodied affirmations for myself inspired by the cards, that will keep me in the yogic meditation during my practice.
I’m now four mornings into this practice and there is so much more to reflect on that I’ll end this blog with the affirmations and poses I chose for the practice.
ps. Most of these images are screenshots from the video. However, I have yet to capture the nadi shodhana practice at the end, so that one is a staged selfie.
In moments of doubt, fear, or trepidation, reciting an embodied affirmation can have an immediate calming, empowering, and centering effect.
In one of my yoga teacher training courses, my classmate, SJ, and I chose the following poses to help us embrace our vulnerability, transparency, comfort in discomfort, risk-taking, and self-study.
I modified the affirmation associated with each pose in Yoga Toolbox for Teachers and Students by Joseph and Lilian Le Page to meet our intentions.
The first pose is malasana, or yogi squat. Do whatever you need to do to warm up your body to enter this pose. While in this pose, affirm: Knowing I am supported by the earth beneath and nourished at all levels of being, I open myself in vulnerability and I speak my truth, satya.
The next pose is deviasana, goddess pose. Once you have entered into this pose safely, affirm: Knowing I am centered in my inner goddess, embodying a balance of strength and softness, I stand in my truth, transparent to the world, brahmacarya.
The third pose is utkatasana, chair pose. Safely enter into the pose and affirm: With balanced personal power and self-esteem, I am comfortable in the discomfort, riding tapas edge, embracing challenges as opportunities.
The fourth pose is natarajasana, dancer. I associate this pose with the Patrick Overton quote, “When you have come to the edge of all light that you have known and are about to step out into the darkness, faith is knowing one of two things will happen: there will be something solid to stand on or you will be taught to fly.” Recite or consider this quote while safely in this pose on the first side. While in dancer on the second side, affirm: With lightness, ease, and faith, I embody the cosmic dancer, flying out into the unknown while balanced perfectly, santosha (contentment) and upeksha (equanimity).
The fifth pose is tadasana, mountain pose. While mindfully engaged and open in this pose, affirm: I rest in the mountain’s stability as I study the reflection of my true being, svadhaya.
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After burning out from a long career as a middle school/high school reading/math/science teacher, I returned to school to study massage, hypnotherapy, mindfulness, aromatherapy, and yoga.