How one year changed me and my Yoga practice.

It’s been a while. My last blog post was about a year ago already. It’s so crazy how fast the time flies even when you’re trying to be mindful of it.

Since then I got married to the man of my dreams and could finally begin to settle down here in Zürich. It’s a long ways from my home in Canada and every transition (especially ones so big) need time. The last year has been filled with personal highs and lows as I’ve worked to find the balance I need not only to achieve my professional goals in a new country, maintain a social life, stay happy but also to keep my own yoga practice strong. There’s a bit about my last year.

The first few months of this big life transition (spring 2017) were pretty easy. I arrived in Zürich fresh from my YTT full of new knowledge and inspiration. I didn’t have a work permit which means I had all the time in the world for my practice. Sometimes I practiced pure asana at home or in the park for 3 hours a day! I felt fantastic in my body and life was good.

After the wedding in May I was able to work so I found a great studio here where I began to teach a weekly yoga class and was able to sub for many different styles including Anusara and even Ariel Yoga. I was feeling so motivated in my own personal asana practice at this time but I also felt like I was lacking on the spiritual side of things. I was all about pushing myself physically to get into a cool pose for an Instagram post which is obviously not what yoga is about. I was feeding my ego, trying to get more followers and that was not satisfying at all. In fact I started to feel insecure because I ended up spending a lot of time on Instagram comparing my practice to others. Not a healthy habit.

In the fall I got myself a position as the English Assistant at a daycare and also got a job working in a small, cozy cafe. Life went from 0 to 100 in no time at all. From April when I had nothing but time to September when i worked more then 100% with my weekly Hatha class on top of it all was an enormous transition. It was honestly too much but it felt good to finally be able to contribute financially to our lives.

My commute each day is looong which makes my work day about 12 hours. Therefore I pretty much said bye–bye to my asana practice. After full days with screaming children that I didn’t understand (Swiss German is a hell of a language) I was exhausted. I had no energy and no motivation for an hour long practice each day. I was lucky when I got on my mat for some gentle stretches. I was generally feeling low, overworked and uninspired. I even stopped teaching for a month because I just didn’t want to. It was rough.

It took me a few month and some honest words from a wise woman at the yoga studio to make me realize that my change of pace from yoga every damn day to almost nothing was completely OK. She simply said to me “life comes in phases“ and with these words all of my guilt about my declining practice disappeared. The ability let go of how things used to be and move with the times is a blessing. To just let yourself go with the flow. Because everything changes all of the time. No moment in time or situation will ever stay the same. I then started to realize that I was progressing in life. It was the first time that I genuinely felt I had moved forward which was kind of exciting! I finally had a real job, a good income, a tight circle of friends (that I didn’t see often enough but still), a beautiful home and most importantly a loving, supportive husband. Things that I never imagined I would have had already 10 years ago. And deep down I was happy. I learnt that not practicing arm balances for a few months doesn’t make me a bad person. It simply maked me a busy person. Which is OK sometimes.

After I was able to accept this change I was ready to get out of my funk. Work a little less and make more time for me. I started to revamp what MY practice looks like and how it feels. I am still working almost full time but I have a stronger, deeper practice now then when I had the time to asana for 3 hours a day because now I have balance. A frequent asana practice paired with daily meditation and mindfulness. It’s taken some time but I feel more connected and happier with myself and my practice then ever before.

If this resonates with you or you’re interested in reading more I’ll be back soon with a couple of ways for you to help your own personal practice suit your lifestyle, so that it’s perfect for you no matter where you are, what you’re doing or how much time you have.

Much love,