New Year, New YOGA.
It’s that time of year where you reflect isn’t it? Also time to look ahead to a new year and new possibilities.
I’ve just finished a run of 17 winter gigs, Christmas parties, company get togethers and festive frolics, a wedding gig and a Christmas market event up in Leeds. I’ve travelled from Brighton to London about 500 times, whizzed around the country from Newbury to Portsmouth to Oxford to London and back to Brighton then up to Leeds and then Manchester.
Manchester is my hometown and I always feel a massive sigh of relief when I get off the train here. My parents always pick me up as if I’m 18 and coming back from my first semester at university and I love that. I always feel so lucky coming home to my lovely family and making plans with friends and catching up! I love my home city even more after the horrible events last Summer and the amazing strengths and bravery and generosity of the people after such a horrific event.
It’s not always been a happy time of year for me. This time three years ago it was another story, being here with my family after a failed marriage and a whirlwind time in New York. It’s been a weird few years of self discovery, self doubt and therapy, but I’ve definitely healed and moved on and learnt so much about myself and also about other people. This time last year was hard too but for different reasons but even when things have been the worst, I’ve come home and felt really supported and able to be myself.
It was this time last year at home in Manchester when I discovered Yoga Revolution: 31 Days Of Yoga with Adriene. I cant express enough how much doing that course really helped me to be healthier and happier. That was my 2017 New Years resolution and it started off by discovering this amazing online and free yoga course which was shared on Facebook by a friend.
I had only ever done yoga at University and Drama School and as a warm up when I am in play's and never managed to continue the practise into real life. Except when posing on a rock in Turkey on Holiday. It took a while to get the shot.
As you can see, I needed some practise!!
I've never stuck to any exercise regimes or classes and I can’t bear the gym and when I saw that post for the first days session I was so hung over and miserable. It was 10pm on New Year’s Day and I was in my parents house feeling sorry for myself on the sofa nursing yet another hang over. I’d had a very boozy Christmas season and was overworked by lots of festive gigs and stressed about money and life and health worries and the future and was very concerned about a very poorly friend as well. I thought I don’t want to feel like this, I just want to feel less negative and more positive and look after myself and look forward. So I saw that post about Yoga with Adriene and thought, do you know what I’ll try the first session and see. I’ve always been a sceptic with things like this but let’s just give it a go. . .
I did the whole course!!!! Throughout the whole of January every day I put that time aside for me and did whatever flow or vibe was in the class and it has helped me to continue with Yoga practise ever since. It really has been life changing. Honestly I never thought I’d be one of those people saying OMG this has changed my liiiiife but it actually worked. I also decided to try and have a long break from the booze. I’d never done this or even thought to do it before but felt it was detrimental to my health at the time physically and mentally and so I promised to not drink until I went on a ski holiday later that month. I did it . Go me!!!! I mean it was only 3 weeks off the booze but for me that was a personal victory! I don’t want to say ‘Hey you can do this tooooo’ but maybe there’s something you’ve been putting off trying to do and sometimes you’ve just got to try and do it!! That said, Yoga with Adriene is revolutionary as last year’s title suggested. Maybe give it a go?!
Watch the little teaser (pasted at the end of my long winded post) with the bad ass that is Adriene for her new January 2018 TRUE: 30 Days Of Yoga. She really is so so good and down to earth, she even gave us New Year’s Day to recover from NYE or too much festive mischief so it started on 2nd Jan. She is really down to earth and likeable and engaging and very funny. Also her dog Benjy often rocks up and hangs out with her mid class so what's not to love, there is a dog involved too! She doesn’t make me compare myself to her or others as I’ve learnt to understand yoga as a self practise this last year. We all have different capabilities physically and you practise the poses to make them gradually feel easier and you then become more flexible. You won’t be a master yogi immediately and it’s not worth beating yourself up if you can’t stay in a balance or a pose without falling over or indeed farting!! Tee hee! I went through a phase of crying sometimes during my practise which was a bit unnerving but I just went with it. It’s about being honest with how you feel and allowing it. You can transfer that idea into other situations as well. There are so many other areas of life it will help with as well as making you flexible and toned. It has taught me to be more patient, I've become better at listening and more patient and realised taking time out for myself is extremely important. Being part of a global community doing these classes is such a wonderful thing too. It’s all free to do and all from your living room or private space wherever you choose to practise. No gym membership or weekly charges!
So if you’re looking to feel pretty awesome this New Year then I think you should click on those links. I’ll be taking part from our little bike shop / home in Brighton. Where will you be?! I would love to hear from you if you do do it! DO IT!!!!!