taking breaks to reset

hi y’all. i haven’t blogged in forever. overall i would say i’m doing alright. my grad school program is on a gap smester so i’ve been job hunting like crazy to try to find something. i told my mom i feel like i’m thoriwng paint at a wall and waiting to see what sticks. and that eventually something will stick soon.

i have been journaling a LOT. i have one i started last july and it’s well over seventy pages now. i just write when i feel like it. it’s really become my way to think and process things. this is something i definetely still do with other people about actionable items (lol) but not for emotions. i’ve really been “slowing down to feel all the feels”.

i still go for walks and can’t wait for it to get warm again. i’m prayerful that i’ll be able to get the vaccine soon. i’m in group 1C cause of my asthma but this process has been so slow.

i also wanted to show a little something i’ve been working on- a virtual yoga studio!

you can check out my IG for updates. basically i’m currently going to offer three classes a week (two yin and the one breathwork and meditation). i’ll also be available for privates.

if you’re interested in booking, head over to this link which is my ribbon page. i will offer on demand classes as well, in my library on ribbon too. my ring light should be here tomorrow so then i’ll get to recording content!

thanks so much for your support in advance. namaste!

yoga and teaching

in almost every teaching environment i’ve been in, i’ve always had my students do yoga. i work with elementary schoolers. so why have them do yoga?

well first, it’s a way for me to connect with my students. after any length of time and discussion, they know i love yoga and go often. by sharing some of who i am as mayah, instead of as their teacher, i can connect with them a little more.

second, it’s good for them. yoga has empowered me. it’s helped me feel safe. it’s helped me heal. i want to pass those skills onto my students. deep breathing (pranayama) and movement (asanas) are beneficial to everyone, espeically children. imagine what the world would be like if we all learned to take a minute and breathe? i’ve found it to be helpful when the kids are restless or just need a mental break. it’s not a coincidence i find yoga to be the most helpful for me then. it’s the magic of yoga!

third, they really like it. after doing it as a class a few times, they want to do more. i’ve had students tell me after things like “When can we do yoga again?” “Let’s do that everyday” “Ms. Mayah my head feels better”.

for yoga with my younger students, i focus solely on breathing. mostly due to space issues (i want to ensure they’re safe- kids are naturally clumsy). also, just breathing is yoga.

why i do yoga

yoga is physically and mentally challenging. there are times where i am in practice, thinking “*insert explicit word, this is hard”.

yoga continues to teach me so many lessons, but the one i want to focus on is when to give up.
yoga has taught me when to give up or when to keep going by presenting me with a lot of opportunities to either push myself or to rest. when i first started doing yoga, the whole class was me pushing myself to remember the poses and how to do them. as i got more comfortable, it was pushing myself to rest and let myself take in the healing energy from the practice. right now, i think i’m at the place to push myself even when i want to give up.

yoga focuses on the difference between pain and discomfort. these are often used as the same word, but they’re very different. pain is not beneficial, it hurts you and could lead to injury and prolonged suffering. when something is painful, you must learn to let it go immediately and do something that’s restorative (like a restorative pose, my favorite is child’s pose). when you stretch yourself too far, there are no benefits because you’ve hurt yourself. discomfort on the other hand presents a challenge. maybe it’s a pose you don’t think you can do. and maybe you still are feeling uneasy about the pose, but you try it. discomfort may bring satisification because you tried something new. whether you “did it right” or not, you tried and that’s something to be proud of.

examples of pain vs. discomfort are present all the time in my practice. i often have wrist pain (i’m working on better distrupting the weight in my hands and working through emotional stuff). when my wrists hurt, i do variations of the pose. i’ve even had instructors give me extra props or offer other variations for me. but if my wrists hurt when i’m in a posture, i stop because that’s painful and i know it will not help my wrists heal faster. doing wrist strengthening exercises though does cause discomfort. but this is temporary and i know i should push through it because my wrists will feel better.

this is a lesson i am currently working on in my life. when do i let go? when do i ask for more support? when do i strengthen myself? is something really harmful or is it just uncomfortable? what are the benefits of me doing this? what are the possible effects?
these questions and many more are some of the ones i use when i’m pondering on what to do next. it can be hard to make decisions. but the most important thing (to me at least) is to take time and think about what you’re doing and why. it helps things make more sense in the long run.

i’m proud of myself 

pride is an emotion I don’t feel very often. Many other people, especially my family, are proud of me, but I rarely feel proud of myself. for my whole life i’ve pushed myself to be the best I can be. I strived for the highest GPA, to be talented in *insert latest passion*, and to be a better person. About a year ago, I started practicing yoga faithfully. I went to my first yoga class in middle school- it was a kids class at the studio my mother works at. The class was super small- my sister and I and two other girls (who I believe were also sisters). The class never got renewed, but I loved going. I always wanted to go with my mother but I was too young to attend the adults class. Last year, my mom bought me yoga passes for the studio she works at. I was going through a rough time in my life- one of the most important relationships in my life seemed to be crumpling apart (update- we were able to grow and mature and I’m the happiest I’ve ever been). So I turned to yoga. I got into crystals, deeper into meditation and focused on myself. I started off pretty inflexible. Now I can easily hold poses like pigeon for two minutes, I can stay up for airplane and my child’s pose is deeper than ever. Whenever I do yoga, I have the same intention- to be the best yogi I can be. I live for the hard classes, where I’m unsure if I can keep going, cause when I do, I feel like I’m on top of the world. Everything I do is a reflection of how much I’ve grown. It makes me so happy. I feel like I can do anything I set my mind to. Yoga has helped me learn to love myself, just a little bit more. Right now, I’m going to yoga multiple times a week at Yoga Shelter (which is not the studio my mom works at but I love it). I’m trying to bring my loves to class with me, so wish me luck!!

post freshman year

freshman year was a year of new beginnings, changes and self discovery. I made friends, lost friends, and really just grew. I’ve learned to trust myself, my instincts, my friends and in the process. I rushed things, and I’ve learned that there is no need to do that. I’ve decided to go with the flow and let things happen naturally. I ended my freshman year with a 3.78 GPA, and I passed my Spanish Profiency exam (so according to the University of Michigan, I’m proficient in Spanish). Another one of my biggest lesson was to focus on what I want. When I’ve continuously worked for and thought about what I wanted, it manifested into reality. One of my goals for the next year is to get up to a 3.85 GPA, make new friends and grow spiritually. I plan to continue doing yoga, which really just helps me stay balanced. I am going to join organizations that will allow me opportunities to grow! I look forward to meeting to the woman I’m becoming.