Naomi Absalom Yoga

Liberate & Elevate

Liberate & Elevate17th September 2017, 09:20

Guest post by Suzie Hunter Smith:

“I’d already spent hundreds of hours on courses and trainings trying to learn the magic cues, the anatomy theory, the sequencing tricks… believing that knowledge would empower me to be the best teacher possible… and it was all hugely valuable stuff, but did it actually help my Self to grow?

Apparently I thought that loading myself up with information and achievements was the key to confidence. People pleasing with ‘good results’ at school and trying to appear to have my shit together in adult life. Liberate & Elevate called bullshit on all the shields and masks I’d built up from the first meeting. My motivations, my opinions, the beliefs which I’d fabricated about myself were blown out of the water. So many discussions and provocative seeds planted, endless challenges and obliteration of all comfort zones. It’s been a bloody challenging 6 months but I wouldn’t take back a second of it.

Lots of fellow teachers have asked how the mentoring has been going over the past months, and I’ve never been able to put it into words. Maybe because this work is never complete – even on the last day it felt like just the beginning.
The simple answer is that life has changed completely. In the last 6 months I have moved house, turned 30 and become a wife. So yes, on paper everything has changed. But the shift has occurred much deeper than the name on my debit card. Getting to know some of my shadows has been empowering. Realising that I have the strength to say no to shit that doesn’t resonate, to reserve my energy and slow down when eagerness to please and ‘succeed’ tempts me towards burn out and that obliviously hiding behind the facade of a harmless ‘girl’ does nothing to empower the fierce woman within.

Endless love and thanks for every soul in this group for holding space, sharing their truth and being potent catalysts for all of this work to begin. You are all astonishing, beautiful people and I feel so honoured to have learnt from you. And my teacher, Naomi. Her raw honesty, intuitive wisdom and sharing of her own vulnerabilities created a mirror for us to see ourselves so clearly. I have no words to express how lucky I feel to have stumbled into her class (thanks to a little nudge from my wonderful David Kam!) From the first breath something was disturbed on a deep, subtle level which I didn’t even realise was there. It scared the shit out of me – it often still does. Something awakens each time I’m under her guidance, whether it’s a knowing of purpose or Self which I fear could steer me into dark and murky waters or a strength which I’m yet to step into… i don’t know. But I’m determined to find out.”

Brighton @ The Studio:

Brighton @ The Studio:12th June 2017, 10:19

More info coming soon….

All bookings through Sarah Williams @ sarah@sarahwilliamsyoga.com

On daring to be me…a little and a lot more.

On daring to be me…a little and a lot more.3rd June 2016, 13:00

At the beginning of this year I spent some time alone setting some pretty strong and (so I thought at the time), unrealistic intentions for the year ahead. It is only just the beginning of June and it has been a little astonishing to reflect and see how much (albeit gradually) my life has shifted in order to align with them. As a result I am finding that I am constantly surprised and in turn excited by life and all of its crazy possibilities. The power of the mind when it recognises and aligns with the force of the spirit never ceases to amaze me and this has become the life blood of my work of late. I am daring myself to step up and into me as fully as possible, the results are scary but truly mind blowing.

As some of you may know, many years ago I hatched a plan to create a mentoring programme for yoga teachers, it was a thought that had sat in my scattered Vata type mind since the last day of my own first teacher training. I remember clearly thinking ‘if only there was someone I could continue to talk with about all of this, a real community to plug into’. I am now in my 5th year of mentoring teachers and I find it truly powerful work and like all things that I think are meant for you, it is something that really found me. It was on the back of finishing another round of ‘The Artist’s Way’ – (a really fantastic practical work book on unblocking creativity that I now encourage my teacher mentees and just about anybody else to read) that I finally hatched the concept for ‘Liberate & Elevate’ – a 6 month mentoring programme for the development and growth of teachers.

We are now nearing the end of the current intake and it has been such a great blessing to guide this particular group of teachers and see them tackle some of their shadows and grow in endless ways as a result of their own commitment to the work. The mentoring programme I run is not an easy one. I believe that mentoring should make teachers accountable whilst providing just the right amount of support for them to do the work themselves, it is about helping people to slowly tease out the raw diamonds from the most often messy dirt, it is about recognising that great fragility and darkness has the potential to transform into great spirit if it is treated with the utmost respect, intelligence and love. My mentoring and to a certain extent my classes are less and less about acquiring new skills, they are about finally owning the ones you have and stepping into them fully.

The world needs teachers like this I believe and further I believe people are looking for this deeper way of connecting through their practice.

It is a little scary because all of a sudden you find your insides on the outside for the world to see, there’s just no hiding. Not everyone welcomes the idea of ‘you being you’, in fact some positively reject it and so as a result I have found myself stepping away from certain situations, limiting my interactions and time on social media, focusing more on the skill of continuing to step up in my own life, becoming me as fully as possible.

It is with great gratitude and excitement that I am now able to offer a second round of this 6 month programme, commencing September 2016. Alongside this programme will sit a further master programme for teachers who have four years of teaching experience or have completed the 6 month programme.

If you are not a teacher there is still so much to update you on, I am teaching a lot of classes and workshops in various places over the coming months – a lot of them are free and you only need to register. Take a look at the details and links below and I hope to see some of you along the way.

Should you be a teacher and interested in any type of mentoring take a moment to have a look at the website via the link above and get in touch to discuss your requirements.

The world is not coming at you…it’s coming from you.

The world is not coming at you…it’s coming from you.30th March 2016, 16:49

Mmmmm SPRIIING is here. She’s truly here and the last few days I’ve been stretching my wings and legs daily, taking walks along the stunning coastline where I live and grabbing every moment possible to get outside and soak up those magical, life affirming rays of Sun.

As my bones have started to thaw it’s become apparent on a cellular level just how deprived of that solar energy we really are and what a profound difference being outside and in nature makes to the quality of our lives. As I get older I realise just how important it is to live in rhythm with the seasons and I feel like nature holds so many of the answers to our increasing sense of disconnection. My son who is just 4 years old attends a Steiner school and everyday no matter what the weather (and often it really is gales, hailstorm and torrential rain!) he starts his day with a walk on the South Downs. Despite my initial reservations and guilt about sending my precious little bundle off wrapped up like Scott of the antarctic, battling biting winds with only a chapstick and an organic banana- he really has become quite a robust little force and the benefits have been unmistakable – he is so in tune with nature, he loves being outside, never ever gets ill and quite literally has all of this creative energy flowing out of him. It is enormously inspiring.

It is one of the reasons why I have returned to the same retreat venue for the last 4 years now – Suleyman’s Garden in Turkey. It is such a little gem of a spot on a stretch of unspoilt coastline, it’s no wonder there are so many repeat bookings each year. So the only question left for you to answer is….have you booked your flight?

Some thoughts on Mentoring.

Some thoughts on Mentoring.26th January 2016, 11:31

On Mentoring:

Often teachers, especially those who have been teaching for longer feel anxious about admitting they need mentoring….it’s almost like they believe it will make them look weak and inexperienced. I reality I tend to find that the teachers who get the most out of mentoring – are in fact those who have been teaching the longest. They have been through various cycles of teaching, are more intune and are ready to be that bit more honest.

Mentoring should not be a one way street, it really should not be all about asking a question and receiving an answer, this is way two dimensional and just doesn’t work as it is not about the growth of the individual and doesn’t give people time to delve into the necessary psychological repercussions of teaching which actually require a great deal of self-enquiry and reflection. Asking questions is important, receiving answers is important but it’s not necessarily where I’m going with mentoring….

Mentoring is missing from yoga teacher training in respect of the fact that it absolutely should be ongoing post training…but it isn’t. You get your qualification and then in general it stops. If you’re lucky you might make a few friends who you can bat ideas off but that’s about it. From that point on you’re generally on your own….it’s really only a matter of time until you go through a burn out. It’s ridiculous to think you can avoid this when you are not actually trained to handle your own therapeutic process – let alone that of your students!

I believe that all teachers go through many cycles of teaching. Ever spiralling cycles of feeling okay, feeling great, feeling awful, feeling insecure, feeling ill, feeling concerned….and so on. These cycles vary depending really on how many years you have been teaching but really they all have common threads. You will always go through them, that much is a fact. However, what stops you from reaching burn out is understanding the psychology of teaching. When I mentor teachers I want them not to necessarily look at ‘how they teach or what they teach’ but what is happening within them when they teach. This kind of work is key in breaking the cycle.

It is tough work. Very gritty and demands honesty and courage. I often turn teachers away from mentoring simply because I realise they are not at a stage where they feel strong enough to do the necessary work. It is one of the reasons I stopped doing drop ins and created a 6 month programme.

The results speak for themselves. If you are able to stand in your power when you teach and by that I mean face your demons, understand what brought you to teaching, that the practice of teaching IS a practice and a healing one at that and ultimately break down what you are processing before, during and after a class you will start to become a much more creative, authentic and at ease teacher. It’s as simple as that. The work is not simple.

But if you do this work, your classes will fill as a result. This is not the aim of mentoring and I don’t promise it because I’m not offering mentoring for that reason – but it is a very lovely by-product. The aim of the mentoring I specifically offer is for you to be free and for you to begin to enjoy your teaching – not just pretend to enjoy it. Teachers often tell me they feel great after a class, on a high – like this is a positive thing. Is it? What is going on here….. ?

Just a couple of weeks after our mentoring weekend I am getting messages like this….This makes me so happy, not because her class is full but because I know what she went through to get to this point and I know that something is being broken down.

Thanks Nighean for the quote and photo (x)

“Tipping my hat to my teachers @naomiabsalom @anamurieljiva @kristimaeyoga this morning. Teach from a place of truth and authenticity they said and your classes will fill. Er, hello full -to-the-rafters Monday morning class! 21 beautiful souls in class this morning….”

Fear. My personal story.

Fear. My personal story.16th September 2015, 11:58

Dear friends,

I truly hope this finds you well, at peace and getting ready for the transition to Autumn.

You’ll have to forgive me – this blog post might be the longest and most important one I’ve written to date. If you’re interested in my somewhat mad ramblings do grab yourself a cuppa and settle in. It’s long and personal but I’ve been trying to get to this point myself for a while and recently something shifted and I just had to take some time to make sense of it and share it in the hope that it might inspire others.

I have been thinking a lot about ‘fear’ recently ahead of my next workshop at Indaba Yoga. It’s a biggie right? Generally my friends and family do not know me as someone who tends to suffer from fear or any kind of anxiety but that’s truly not the case. It’s fair to say that I am a bit of a fighter but it’s also true that I’ve lived with fear all my life; I am constantly trying to chip away at it – it is my life’s great work. Sometimes I know I’m really getting somewhere and there is lightness and ease but at others I am totally at sea in the knowledge that it has me in it’s grip.

My personal story is that music has always been a major part of my life, I worked in the industry for a long time and was nuts about music from an early age…my earliest memories are all tied into hearing and experiencing music and being blown away by it’s inherent power to move me. I see the same thing in my son who is just four years old but can instantly be deeply affected by a piece of music or someone’s voice.

When I moved towards yoga it was part of a combined effort to help me finally deal with crippling panic attacks and bouts of anxiety and depression. As I practiced with more discipline I began to experience other fascinating aspects of myself but ultimately feeling such a mix of emotions and states became very confusing, so much so that I went into a form of shutdown. I began to move away from the music industry and away from certain areas of my life which at the time I thought were holding me in damaging patterns. Consequently I pretty much turned my back on the past and I included music in this – it became hard to even listen to because of the overwhelming feelings it stirred up. I didn’t really understand why at the time, I just knew I needed to simplify my life, I didn’t want to explore the reasons why, I had become attached and dependant to the stillness and calm yoga offered and I felt I couldn’t afford the instability the past presented.

It’s a common story really – the ego tells you you’re better off in a safer place so you remove the triggers. It makes total sense in one respect, many people experiencing conflict, trauma and pain turn to yoga; they feel something shift internally and want to experience it more. They simplify their lives and then arrive at a crossroads where they believe that what they’ve experienced in the past is too conflicting. In an effort to attain more balance, they modify all areas of their lives until the pendulum ceases to swing so wildly.

In one respect this is really important and part of a natural process of building new pathways but what happens when we inevitably arrive at another crossroads where we realise the past has not been healed and more to the point that these parts of us are still gloriously relevant and important aspects of the self which have been left abandoned and uncared for?

Cut to a recent experience I had a music festival standing in a starlit field at night watching the amazing Sufjan Stevens play – I had the realisation that exploring fear is fundamental to all growth and although it is often framed as negative and unsettling, on the other side of this is great freedom. I felt something uncomfortable rising in me as I watched and experienced this incredible moment, it was almost like an itch and I wanted to move away, to my surprise I realised it was fear – but what was there to be afraid of? On the Sunday I watched a musician play his set with such presence and freeness I felt absolutely floored. The resistance finally dropped and tears sprung into my eyes as I realised what I’d blocked myself from for many years….was actually me….the essence of who I was had become lost in favour of a two dimensional simpler version. The fear that I had felt was the fear of it becoming overwhelming again.

It was a powerful realisation that we are all in some way looking for beauty, for love, for experiences of ourselves which resonate with those of others, for community and safety, for harmony and the reassurance that all of these things do exist….BUT sometimes we choose to turn away or close ourselves down because we are afraid of opening, afraid of where it will take us and afraid that we are not ready for it.

I guess the question we must always ask ourselves is – are we able to absolutely, fully, freely, wholly, completely – melt into the experience we are having? More to the point are we ready and willing to accept that as multi dimensional, hugely complicated and wonderful human beings not everything we experience will be comfortable, linear and pleasant? Are we actually ready to have an experience or is it easier to observe ourselves (and others) have an experience and remain at a safe distance?

It was a lightbulb moment for me. I often refer to it in class as ‘the moment of integration’ – when we allow ourselves and the barriers to ourselves to disintegrate fully. You can see it in people in class, feel it when you hold the body and you witness the heart beat and the rigidity of the form melting – there is ‘the moment’. Everything changes right then, it is a miracle and a wonder to behold and not easy to find. Chase it and it’s gone.

At one point at the festival I felt this and all the pieces of me knit together, like an energetic bolt of dot to dot. The past and the present, the light and the shade, the happiness and the doubt, the human and the yogi, the wild unhinged woman and the painful introvert, everything i’d locked away came flowing back like a huge tidal wave and it felt huge, overwhelming, very frightening and utterly glorious! That moment when everyone around you is laughing and dancing and you’re bent double ready to primal scream….yes that!

I think it is all too easy for people to get trapped in one way of being and then lose an important and relevant piece of themselves – for a moment they are lost in a two dimensional landscape and searching for the next thing to help them get home. They are scared to take steps forward, or steps back, they are fearful of exploring the edges of themselves they are afraid of their own power and fearful of waking up, they are scared to return home.

Fear. It’s a biggie right?

Thank you for reading.

I thought ‘I wish I could bottle this’…..so I did.

I thought ‘I wish I could bottle this’…..so I did.15th June 2015, 13:19

I’m not a huge fan of sharing so called ‘miracle cures’ for this ailment and that mainly because I truly believe the old saying ‘one man’s medicine is another’s poison’. Drinking myself silly with green juice in the past has proven this to be the case; a green juice a day did not keep anything away, far from it. Whilst many extol the benefits of knocking back a daily sludge of raw kale, spinach and the like.. it took me years of dutiful juicing to realise that this was actually moving away from good health. Ultimately I found out the hard way that learning how to listen to your body is the most valuable skill you can acquire in order to reach full potential and optimum health…a tough lesson but what a mighty one to learn.

Recently I was diagnosed with a very low white blood cell count. Four consecutive blood counts over the course of a year revealed bizarrely low neutrophils and lymphocytes – both absolutely necessary for fighting off infection in the body. I suffered cold after cold, sinus infections and terrible allergies that would have me waking in the middle of the night, eyes and nose streaming for seemingly no reason. I then developed a nasty skin condition on my face called Seborrheic dermatitis which resulted in angry, red, sore patches around my eyes and down the sides of my nose which eventually started to spread wherever they wanted. In the pictures you see above, the photo on the left was actually taken when things were starting to improve.  Prior to this point I had been from doctor to nutritionist and back again – one armed me with steroidal creams, dandruff shampoos and facial washes to strip the top layer of the skin, pills for this and that – the other with recipes for juices, smoothies, healthy meals and vitamins to up my immunity. Nothing worked and in fact I just got worse despite – as my close family would call it ‘being the healthiest person’ around.

When I asked the doctors what I could do to raise my white blood cells or support my immune deficiency they all said:

‘nothing really….just deal with it, try not to get stressed and eat as well as you can’.

Urm right.

‘Perhaps more yoga and green juice?’

‘Yes that should help’.

‘Health is our natural state and is the end result of living in harmony. Disease is the natural end result of living out of harmony.’

I’m not really one to take things lying down. The very notion of giving another person entire responsibility for one’s health has always been at odds with me…particularly when most Doctors happily separate the mind from the body. That, I don’t get at all. I am a big believer in taking ownership of your own life and health, so I decided that if there were no apparent answers to my health issues, I would have to try to find my own. It took a year of experimenting, mainly because, I believe, learning about our unique patterns and reactions and responses to separate stimuli takes a very long time and all the while our bodies and minds are evolving and in flux. What works one day and for one person will not necessarily work for the next for the next person for a myriad of obvious reasons.

I have realised that in Ayurvedic terms I tend towards a prominence of ‘Vata’ – I’m always the one with an extra layer on and chilly fingers and toes, I can take a lot of heat (just ask my yoga students who are quite often drowning in puddles of sweat while I’m still walking around in an Aaron jumper), I can lose weight very easily, my eyes get quite dry and blurred, without yoga and meditation I have a buzzy/ anxious energy and very often need a lot of grounding – my day to day activities resemble that of a bumble bee (I go to one room for a phone charger – end up in the bathroom cleaning the toilet, go upstairs for a pen come down with a chair, I begin to prepare a clothes wash and half way through find myself replying to emails, I get a message from a friend and two days later remember to reply…then forget, then remember, then forget…..) it goes on! For people like me, raw green juice or any other juice for that matter makes all of these things worse because they are cooling, light, raw foods which feed my cooling raw energy. When I was guzzling this down thinking I was doing the very best thing for my body I was actually exacerbating the problem and taking my body further away from harmony and further towards illness… it just took me a while to put all of this together.

When I started to learn how to give my body what it needed instead of what I thought it needed – things changed quite dramatically. I stopped practicing a full on dynamic yoga practice daily and started to move with less speed and force and with more integrity and ease, I began to eat more grounding foods – root vegetables, soups, curries, fats, herbs and spices which warmed my system and helped me feel full and energised yet very grounded.

I discovered that these types of foods were amazing natural medicines and what follows is my own recipe for a ‘potion’ based on a lot of research and experimentation. All I can tell you is that it works for me, it may not work for you…. but it is all natural and it ‘may’ work for you!

I make a batch every few days and drink a shot every morning. On days when I’ve felt a cold coming on I take the bottle with me wherever I go and drink a shot every hour or near enough. My skin has completely cleared up, my digestion is infinitely better as are my allergies and hay fever. Miraculously on two occasions I have managed to completely halt two heavy colds within 24 hours – the first time I was streaming, sneezing my head off and in such a mess… yet in just a few hours I was through it.

**Just to say – fresh turmeric juice will ruin your juicer and just about anything else it comes into contact with. Make sure you’re not attached to your white surfaces or a pristine juicer and have a few pairs of sturdy rubber gloves. It can get messy and more often than not my fingers look like I have a 60 a day habit but personally I couldn’t care less!

Essential ingredients:
* fresh turmeric root
* fresh ginger
* 2 organic oranges juiced
* 1 organic lemon juiced
* High strength Manuka honey
* Black pepper

Juice everything then add a couple of tablespoons of the highest potency Manuka honey you can find. Keep in a bottle in the fridge and every time you take a shot grind in a teaspoon of black pepper (this activates the curcumin). You’ll also do well to follow your shot with some good fats as this helps the curcumin to be absorbed into the bloodstream through the lymphatic system.

When I’m really struggling with a head cold I’ll also add in some fresh garlic, cayenne pepper and a little warm water and drink as a tea. It is pretty delicious but then again I’m a bit of a freak like that. If you don’t like a little spice forget it, this is not for bland palettes!

There is a wealth of information available on the efficacy of turmeric and its potent anti-inflammatory benefits – do your own research…..but also look beyond what it is your are putting in your body and see what you are putting in your mind. It is all connected more than you may want to admit.

All I can say is I am ecstatic that for now I can dump the meds!

muchlove xx

Ideas on self-worth

Ideas on self-worth23rd February 2015, 12:08

Constantly assessing our own self-worth by using other’s opinions of us as a credible yard stick is pretty disastrous.

When I mentor other teachers quite often the bulk of my work is in trying to help them understand that the greatest value in what they are doing and in what they offer to others is how they feel about it themselves.  Is what they are sharing an authentic representation of their own knowledge and skills and have they experienced it in their own lives? Without the feedback of others would they feel that they personally place value in what it is they are doing? Do they recognise that their self worth might be linked too closely to the praise OR criticism of those who, to put it bluntly, may be singing from a different song sheet or do not have the experience or even sensitivity to appraise adequately?

I share this because yesterday I felt this in my own practice. I thought twice about sharing this but being the beast that I am I feel this has relevance to many friends and students….

I spent this weekend on the Isle of Wight teaching workshops to a big group of yogis. I shared with them practices and sequences which are dear to my heart and what’s more I offered them from a very raw place of authenticity – they mean a lot to me, it took some time for me to get to this place of integrity in my own practice, a lot of dirt shovelling and self-reflection, a lot of questioning what it is I do, how I do it and why. Anyway upon leaving the IOW I received some news from someone which basically I saw as a reflection of their lack of belief in me and the practices I teach. At exactly the same time I received an email from a student who’d been at my IOW workshops and who’d had a pretty deep and cathartic experience. I immediately caught myself in the moment of self sabotage – they think, therefore I am.

A dear friend of mine once gave me probably one of the most important pieces of advice I’ve received in my life to date. ‘Do not give your power away’. It seems very simple but if you consider it for a moment how often do we do this and in how many situations? How often do you allow what someone else is thinking about your life/ actions/ behaviour/ circumstances/ mode of thinking etc to actually reset your internal compass? How often do you give your power away to someone who literally does not deserve it and has no idea about your life? More importantly do you recognise that in giving your power away freely you actually throw yourself into turbulence and that very act is like kryptonite for self-worth? Put aside self-worth for a moment, how do you think giving your power away alters your creativity, passion, vitality or taints the mere enjoyment of doing something you love?

I re-posted a brilliant article recently on the ‘Hidden Danger of Comparing Yourself to Others’ which discussed the pitfalls of judging your own work and comparing it to that of others. It contained one of my favourite all time quotes from the brilliant Martha Graham:

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.”

The same can be said for allowing other’s opinions of you or your work to alter your self-worth and therefore shape what it is you give to the world. I always ask the teachers I mentor, ‘Do you love what it is you are doing? Does it have value to you? Does it make you come alive?’ In our socially switched on world, we have become obsessed with the idea of receiving positive feedback or showing the world how popular we are and like dogs excited to please we wait to receive pats on the heads for the tricks we do. It is kind of ridiculous when you break it down and giving too much weight to other’s blocks our unique expression .

Stop giving your power away. Your self-worth is directly linked to how you feel about yourself, your value does not decrease based on someone’s inability to see it – they have their own stuff going on, their own model of framework…. it does not matter what they think, it matters how much power you allow them to have.

Me, you and yoga in your front room?

Me, you and yoga in your front room?7th February 2015, 22:48

Crikey what a day! Today I’ve been filming sequences for online yoga platform ‘Movement for Modern Life’.
Nothing like teaching yoga with a big fat light shining on you…such a strange sensation to be observed when you’re teaching a practice which is actually very personal and tender – my perfectionist tendencies and OCD we’re going nuts. BUT the sequences are done, they are in the bag and hopefully in about a month you’ll be able to see me with my teeth stuck to my lips laughing at (with) one of my students (friend) about the fozzies (our term for ridiculous core work which makes you shake like Fozzy bear.
Big thanks to my gorgeous buddies SJ and Rishin – I really hope they keep the giggling in – and maybe the bit where SJ says ‘this is a joke? You expect me to lower my feet to the ground without warning?!’

That really made me laugh…and yes of course I did!

 

A beautiful week in Marrakech

A beautiful week in Marrakech7th December 2014, 22:48

Finally made it home from our week in Marrakech after a typically long and arduous journey – why oh why universe – a rail replacement service today of all days???!! Another test I know…it’s okay, I think I passed!
Thank you so very much to all of you who came on this retreat. I can honestly say this was probably one of the biggest learning experiences of my life. I LOVED teaching you and you taught me so much in return, the practices felt like they mattered, they were long, tough, full of laughter, dirt, sweat, sadness, tears and toxic smells but GOD what an energy you created – 26 people I feel deeply privileged to have spent time with and utterly grateful that you trusted me to hold the space for you.
I am totally and utterly cream crackered – spanked to within an inch of my life but it was worth every moment.
At the end of the last practice last night I sobbed because I felt the collective energy so strongly it literally blew my head off that people from all different age groups and backgrounds could create this magic together…and this to me is what yoga is all about. It is about coming together, opening to vulnerability, revealing our hardest truths and laughing our frigging asses off at each other during the ridiculous core stuff I put you through.
And the hammam….the hammam….oh my God the hammam….my mula bandha is still lying on a chaise longue smoking a post coital cigarette I believe.
Biggest love to all of you.