A few years ago I did a New Year’s Day class with a wonderful and inspiring teacher called Celest Pereira about gratitude and setting intentions for the coming year. As I remember it, Celest made us write speedily and without hesitation: 1) highlights of the previous year, 2) what you're grateful for now, and 3) hopes and wishes for the coming year. We spent two or three minutes on each. Speed is of the essence! The idea is that without allowing ourselves time to think, cogitate, calculate, consider and craft an answer, the subconscious comes flowing through the pen. This exercise can reveal to you things that you already know but have either buried, dismissed or pushed aside for later. It’s a surprising and delightful exercise.
There are plenty of places next week. The 6.00- 7.00 Monday class is back and bookable. I’m thrilled to see new yogis come and give it a go, including New Year Resolution people, and yogis who have specific goals or poses they want to work on. I’m elated that the current Home Studio yogis keep coming back, many bringing family members if tow. I just couldn’t be more honoured.
I often get enquiries about yoga in the workplace but it usually takes a dedicated yogi to get it off the ground and galvanise colleagues and office managers. I thought I’d write some words of encouragement. If you’ve already suggested it, you’ll still be trudging through the gale of "I'm not flexible enough". I read somewhere that ‘thinking you shouldn't go to a class because you're not flexible enough is like not going to dinner because you're not full’. Neat! (And, anyway, touching your toes is really the least of your concerns on the way to Nirvāṇa-at-work!)
Yoga in the news
Have you been out of practice and found yourself in the first class of the year shuffling around like a wizened yoda? Perhaps a yoga holiday in a warmer climate might help. The Guardian has an article about the “25 of the best yoga holidays and retreats”. Mine isn’t in there (sad face) but I was incredibly proud to see a teacher that I have practiced with at Stillpoint, Scott Johnson, is acknowledged and his retreat in Scotland highlighted. (He’s also teaching tomorrow in London – see here)
The trendy food of 2017 is apparently a teaspoon of turmeric every day! Jeremy Vine on Radio 2 had a turmeric feature this week which you can find here (wind forward to 36.54). The piece addresses its anti-inflammatory properties - in cancer, diabetes, dementia, and use of statins. (I’m a runner and my legs often ache so I’m instantly drawn towards people who say the magic words ‘anti-inflammatory’). Turmeric and black pepper in smoothies is gorgeous!