Be here, be now

Simply said, difficult to execute. And yet, these words are the truth to walk the way to happiness.

When I was in Tulum last year and participated in a yoga retreat, one of the daily morning routines at 7.30am was meditation. At that point in my life, I’ve of course heard about meditation, but apart from ‘sitting still’ in my yoga classes, I never meditated. I write ‘sitting still’ in quotation marks on purpose, because this was what mediation meant to me up until that day.

The first meditation during the yoga retreat was not easy at all for me. My thoughts were wandering, to the past, to the future, to the breath of other people in the room, basically everything, but me. I felt restless, not able to sit still, and I couldn’t focus. My mind was controlling this meditation fully and taking me everywhere, but the here and now.

Only when I started focusing on my breath and breathed in and out louder, I experienced a bit of silence arising from within.

If you are struggling with being silent, too, then I can recommend you to start meditating on a daily basis. Start with 3-5 minutes only, then increase the length to 10 minutes, then 15 minutes and then meditate as long as you want to. Find a comfortable seat, crossing your legs or sitting on your heels. The beginners amongst you may want to try lying down to start with. I find it easier to be silent when lying down, as it’s more comfy, but obviously with practice you can sit up.

Once you meditate, just observe what comes up for you, do not comment or assess, just notice. Let your thoughts come and go like clouds, thank them for being there to protect you, but then kindly tell them good-bye. At least, for that moment. For the time-being. This way, you’ll be able to experience presence, being in the here and now. Gradually. Do not worry, all good things take time, so take your time to become silent, take your time to be fully present.

To support this process, I also like journalling after the meditation – writing all my feelings & thoughts down into my pink notebook. I feel like bringing everything down to paper is such a relief and it helps me to let go of these thoughts even quicker next time I meditate. Journalling helps me a lot to relive my feelings and thoughts and to move them from the unconscious to the conscious. Always remember that we can only ever change feelings, thoughts, situations, etc. that we’ve become conscious of. Every feeling in the unconscious remains hidden and it becomes more and more difficult to reveal the longer we leave our feelings in the unconscious.

I promise the moment you become conscious of yourself, your feelings and behaviours, it might be just a bit of a shock and maybe it hurts a tiny bit, but then you’ll feel relieved, free and ready to be in the here and now, the way to happiness.

Yours, Nina

 

 

 

Yoga love

Why I love yoga? Because it challenges my body like I’m challenged in life. The beautiful thing is I decide how to react to each and every challenge that life throws at me. With noticing, doing my best & finding ease in the asanas, which reflect life situations or with giving up, not pushing through and telling myself I can’t do this.

Surely, you can guess how I decided! Self-love always.

I started practicing yoga in 2015. I was stressed at work and I had to deal with a broken heart, coming out of a 10-year relationship. I’ve always been in love with dancing and went to my jazz dance classes at Pineapple Dance Studios in London 3 times a week. At some point, however, dealing with my emotional pain and rising stress levels at work, it all just became too overwhelming that I felt the urgent need to calm down, to find peace, something that would re-align me with myself to bring back the energy I’ve always had. And I instantly thought of yoga, of a yoga retreat somewhere in the sun. I told my best friend about my idea and that same day, we browsed the internet for yoga retreats on the Canary Islands. One week later, we had our places in Gran Canaria booked. One week of Hatha yoga, Yin yoga, meditation & breathing exercises, healthy, vegetarian meals and a beautiful double room with our own balcony.

Right in the first yoga class, I realized just how much I was switched on (but not in a positive way). I couldn’t sit still, my breath was flat, my shoulders tight. I simply couldn’t let go and fully relax. Well, I thought, I need more time to get into it; on the other hand I was honestly shocked about just how agitated I was.

After a few days, I already felt calmer and more peaceful from within. I was able to sit in one position for longer, my breath was deeper and my body had begun to relax. And this feeling, exactly this feeling, is what hooked me. I wanted to feel this feeling as often and intensively as possible.

This is when my yoga journey started – in November 2015. It has continued ever since and I will start my yoga teacher training in November 2017 – two beautifully enriching years later.

If you want to be part of my yoga journey, then don’t miss my blog posts.

Yours, Nina