“You can’t pour from an empty cup.”
I arrived in France over a month ago and have been adjusting to the differing way of life from my time in Cambodia. I live and work in a castle with ~20 people from all over the world to help turn the castle into a yoga retreat.
I was taking a yoga class from a fellow teacher last week and she said something that really stuck with me. We were just beginning class in a seated meditation and she said that this yoga class was a time to “go inward and bond with yourself.” I’d always looked at yoga class as a time to feed myself from within and nourish my mind, body, and soul, but when she said it was personal bonding time I thought about how profound those words were for life off the mat.
Many times, in life when things begin to speed up and there’s a lot going on, it’s easy to make ourselves our last priority. Everyone else’s priorities and wants are at the top of our list and we can begin to neglect our own wants and needs. We all understand the importance of helping others and being of service, but what about tending to our own needs, going inward, and bonding with ourselves?
The word yoga is defined from Sanskrit as union. When we practice yoga we’re literally practicing unifying our mind and soul and strengthening that bond. Bonding with ourselves then becomes the essence of this practice and what we work to cultivate on and off the mat. Bonding with ourselves enough to hear and respond to what our body needs and bonding with ourselves enough to know when to put our needs first. That not only applies to listening to your body while you practice yoga, but listening to yourself off the mat and tending to your needs.
This post is not just for you, but for me as I continue to grow, learn, and experience new things. Slowing down and listening to my needs, responding, and trying to put myself first is something I’m working with and I invite you to join me. I’ve come to learn that growth and learning opportunities are constant and available within every situation if space is allowed to slow down and just be.