Hello and Happy Monday,
Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. The weather here in Virginia is wonderful. I spent the weekend very low-key, nursing, yet another, back injury. Every time I have an injury I go back to reexamining my boundaries, I believe these are connected.
As you know, I do all the classes I teach online. This is a tough challenge that I embrace, remembering my left from right, and reversing it so I can mirror you, turning to make sure my back isn’t facing you, and moving and doing while talking, explaining, and breathing. I have yoga teacher friends who have not taken this approach (to online teaching) and instead sit in front of their cameras and lead the class verbally only. This isn’t an option I wanted to take. When I teach this way, doing the entire class, I’m almost out of my body, or better said, I’m very passive with my body, I notice some sensations, but I ignore them and move on – it’s not like when I take a yoga class, then I am active in my body, noticing all the sensations and responding to them. I don’t really know how else to explain that. What I know is that passive = ineffective, and when I am passive with my body, I get injured. When I am passive with my boundaries, I get hurt. When I am active in my body, I am healthy and strong. When I am direct in my boundaries, I am clear and free.
I think to be healthy in my body I need to communicate with it. Communication is both speaking and listening. Instead of asking, “how am I feeling” asking, “What sensations am I feeling in my upper back?” (or any body part). It may seem nuanced, but I have found it makes a difference. This same method works for my relationships with people too.
Passive boundaries with people may look like:
* waiting for someone else to figure out why you are upset
* waiting for someone to notice why you are upset and ask you about it
* dropping hints
Passive boundaries in my body may look like:
* not feeling ok and telling yourself, “I’m fine”
* not going to sleep when tired
* spending idle hours on your phone
* Ignoring a minor injury
Active/Direct boundaries with people may look like:
* doing the work so you can identify what you need and how you feel
* asking for what you need
* taking time to listen
* asking for clarity when something doesn’t make sense
Active/Direct boundaries in my body may look like:
* curiosity and inquiry on how you are feeling
* going on walks
* taking baths
* body scans
* slow breathing
There are lots of other examples, but those are sticking out to me in this moment. Boundaries are not walls, they are not set up to keep people away. Instead, they are gateways to freedom.
In setting clear boundaries with my body, I am taking some time off from online teaching. For Pilates for Yogi’s this week – if someone or even two people are able to come in person, I can teach you and still also provide the class online, you will be featured. While I am feeling much better, Pilates always seems to push my edge. If I cannot find someone, I will need to cancel the class. Please respond to this ASAP if you are interested. I will still be at yoga in the park and teaching private lessons out of my home studio. I love teaching online, and plan on continuing, but will be looking for new ways to share content that benefits all of us. I am open to suggestions.
Have a wonderful week.