Yoga Can Make Us Happier, Healthier and Over All Full Of Life

Jan 25th, 2016

Yoga has changed my life and it can change everyone’s lives. I liken my life before I found yoga to being like a goat wondering around from one thing to another never satisfied with anything. Then I discovered yoga. Yoga helped me learn how to tap into what is going on inside of me by being aware and knowing that I have the power to determine how I feel about myself. This knowledge has changed my life. Now I have hope, confidence, and a love for life.

Yoga has helped me to learn how to heal. One of the most difficult challenges that I faced was when my brother died in a car accident. He was driving intoxicated and hit a tree and died instantly. I was very close to my brother. I remember several conversations that we had about his joys and his sorrows. He went through some tough experiences in life. These tough experiences led him to drink every day. He told me that his drinking helped with his depression which led him into a vicious cycle. He was a different person when he drank. When he drank he would pull away from me and everyone that he loved by not answering our phone calls and waiting for months to call us back. After hearing of his death I struggled with life and the reason for it. I was not ready for him to die because he was so young. Through yoga I slowly learned how to look inward and face my internal struggle of losing my brother. I was then able to heal in a healthy way. It did not happen overnight.

Each time that I participated in a class I felt more whole as a person after the class. Although there are still times that I feel sad when I think of him gone. Another thing that helped with my brother’s death was the help of others.

Like yoga with others, difficult poses become easier and we help build our confidence in our ability to do them. Such as life with the support of others we are better able to deal with challenges that we are dealt. With the support of each other are so much stronger. I had some friends who had been through a similar experience of losing a loved one reach out to me. They helped me to realize that my internal struggle of the loss was normal. Even though I have never gotten any answers to my questions I know that yoga, God, and friends helped me to have the strength and the peace to keep going and not to give up on life.

I have learned that pain from a loss never goes away, however, I realize that people have two choices they can become bitter and become victims or heal, look outward, and become advocates for others. From my experience of losing a brother, my desire to give empathy and give hope to others has increased. I want them to move beyond their tragedy and become stronger because of it. They can in return reach out and help others. The beautiful thing about helping others is that we help ourselves as we help others. This is the secret formula of how to truly experience joy in one’s life.

Over a year ago, I certified to be a yoga instructor. Part of my certification process was to volunteer in teaching yoga to individuals at a treatment center. This service turned into a job opportunity. Now I teach at a couple of different drug and alcohol treatment centers and thoroughly love it! I always remind my students that addictions and problems do not define us unless we let them. Yoga provides no judgment towards us or others but allows us to discover who we really are.

When I teach a yoga class, I always start my class with a theme such as gratitude. While I am teaching the class I have the student’s think of something that they are grateful for. If I feel like it is appropriate I will share an example from my personal life such as how I am grateful for my smile.

Throughout the practice I remind my students to think of one or two things that they are grateful for. This process allows me and my students to change our thoughts towards gratitude thus transitioning our thoughts to focus on positive thoughts. The mind, the body, and the spirit connect. In yoga we do poses as well as focus on our thoughts. Our thoughts become our actions.

After I share the theme of the class, I start with deep breathing. The breath allows the students to focus on the present moment of what we are doing right here right now. After we get our heart rate up by doing the different yoga poses, then we do Shavasansa which means the final resting position. This is my favorite part of the whole yoga practice. During this phase of the practice I go around and rub lemon oil on the client’s foreheads, this oil helps to transform energy. Lemon oil in particular provides happiness and lifts our spirits. I always allow time before and after class for students to come and ask me questions. This allows me to get to know my students and to build a relationship of trust with them. It also lets them know that I care.

I always tell my students to eat a healthy meal or drink a protein shake before they come to class. Before I teach a yoga class, I make a yummy protein, veggie, and fruit smoothie using the blend fresh products which contain 12 fruits and vegetables in every scoop because yoga takes a lot of energy to practice.

I want to share how yoga can help others. I work really hard to feel their energy and discover what they need in their lives. A former student from one of my yoga classes told me how yoga changed his life. He had come from a dark place of being an addict with no hope yoga helped him to have hope and to realize that he has endless possibilities. He’s now taking classes towards getting a nursing degree, working, and of course still doing yoga.

People and society tend to label, which can push the individuals into a box. These boxes do not allow them to change, but keeps them focused on their weaknesses. This can damage the individual and leave them feeling hopeless with no chance in the world. Individuals can be stuck forever in this box unless someone reaches out to them and gives them hope. Yoga allows us to feel good about ourselves so we can have a renewed sense of hope and a self-realization that we can create the kind of life we choose.

Students tell me that I am a powerful yoga teacher and I know that it is because I believe and apply this knowledge into my life. I am constantly practicing yoga poses anywhere and at any time while watching TV or at a park. Each week I do yoga pose challenges where I have a photographer take pictures of me doing poses, I then post my poses on Instagram.

Doing yoga also helps me to keep my bikini body. I feel so fortunate to have found my passion and my talents. Now I am so excited to help others discover their talents and passions. Everyone has talents that they and only they can offer to help change the world for the better. My talents are that I see greatness in every person that I come into contact with, I love people easily and I’m good at teaching yoga. There is a purpose for my life and I can help others to have this same hope that I have received from my experience with practicing yoga.

I know what yoga has done for me in my life and now I want to help others with yoga. Once we discover our greatness within ourselves we then are better able to see greatness in others and can help them to see their great worth and that we all have so much to offer the world.

You can follow me on Instagram at @yogilifeinspiration.

To read the full article please download our Asana Journal App or purchase Issue 157 January 2016

Asana Journal

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