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.