Reflections on Resilience and Reopening
Finding the resilience to resume regular life
When Governor Inslee announced King County’s entry into Phase 2 of the Safe Start Plan, which included yoga studios opening at 30% capacity, I felt immediate pressure to open the studio for classes asap! After all, I had spent weeks preparing for this day . . . cleaning props and the studio environment, and developing protocols for a safe class experience.
Yet I felt hesitant. These last few months have offered numerous challenges on many levels. In addition to the wider issues of the pandemic, racial inequities being brought to light and our political situation, my beloved younger brother has been in the hospital since May 13. He was originally hospitalized for emergency brain surgery. That was successful and then followed by a host of complications, among the most challenging have been persistent delirium and agitation. I have been advocating for his care from 2400 miles away.
I know I’m not alone in feeling somewhat tender and vulnerable with a dented capacity for handling life’s regular small and big challenges.
I don’t know what the tasks or events or even joys are that you are feeling pulled to do without yet being ready. The world of doing can be very compelling. There can be a rush to “catch up”, to speed up and to look outside of ourselves to emerge from the cocoon in which we’ve been sheltered since March. An unnamed drive suggesting that if you get this done or replenish this supply or make that visit or ?, it will all be ok, you will feel. . . better.
Perhaps you are thinking, “WHAT IS she going on about?!” Maybe you are like a horse at the gate waiting to get out and do EVERYTHING.
Or maybe you are an essential worker and you have not had the luxury of sheltering in place. If that is the case, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Chances are, we all find ourselves at different and variable places along this continuum, from cocoon to horse at the gate. Depending on the day, time of day, the activity proposed or any of a number of other factors you may feel more or less inclined to emerge from your safe harbor
Yoga philosophy advises us that there is a natural flow to everything, from spirit to mind and then to the material world. While these outer undertakings are part of our wellbeing, the deeper power to weather difficult circumstances lies within us. The more we focus on being present to our own inner leadings, our own connection with Spirit or Higher Power or whatever name you use, the more resilient we become. Doing the work to be present in every moment leads us to greater mindfulness and understanding. It can also help us to find acceptance and contentment, which can bolster your capacity to take the best action to address whatever situation you encounter.
Presence feeds resilience.
According to Merriam Webster resilience is “an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change”. Resilience is not a static quality. It waxes and wanes based on our life circumstances, our reserves, the structures we have in place to recover, and the magnitude of the current misfortunes or changes.
Building resilience requires mind, body and spirit engagement. Yes, it includes having a positive outlook. It is also about cultivating a strong and flexible body and a supple spirit. Yoga holds tools to help us to build resilience on all of these levels. This is why I am hard at work creating a Realize Your Resilience Guild. It is set to launch in September. It will be an ongoing membership based project with weekly live and recorded offerings. I will keep you posted as plans evolve.
In the meantime, please join us for the next session of classes, which begins tomorrow, Sunday, July 19 at 9am. We will be nurturing our resilience by joining in community and practicing mindful asana to care for our bodies, especially low backs and hips, as well as grounding breathing practices and meditation.
Sunday 9am PW 439323 Level I-II
2nd and 4th Sundays (July 26) at 10:30am PW 700465 Gentle and Therapeutic
Monday Noon PW 276899 Beginning/Level I
Tuesday Tuck In 8pm PW 851008 Guided meditation or deep relaxation
Wednesday 6:30pm PW 153308 Level I-II
If it is your intention to come to class and you find yourself forgetting what day it is, let me know. I send out reminders with class links on the day of class. Tell me which class is on your radar. I will be happy to include you. Don’t worry it’s not a commitment, merely an indication that class is happening in case you are free and it works for you to join us!
In part, all of this is to say that I will continue to offer my classes solely via Zoom for the time being. I will keep you posted on studio reopening plans as they develop. Please know that Zoom classes will continue even after the studio reopens.
Wishing for you all that you need to navigate these days safely and sanely,