February always gets me thinking about my direction in life. This is the time when I start to get spring fever, and want to move on to the next step. Which can be dangerous, because the seasons would have us stay in a nice slow mode until winter is actually over. The result? Well, for me this time it meant a big fat dose of the flu. Stay slow, Calley. Stay measured, enjoy your precious little down time. These are the things I have to remind myself.
This thing I teach called YOGA, I’ve come to realize after all these years of practice, is really just continually cultivating your relationship with your SELF by way of physical movement, stretches, breath, and stillness – and attempting new iterations of those four things, SO THAT you can better interact with the world around you. If you’re a physically delicate flower like myself (with a good dose of fiery energy), you need a little more time to restore, reflect, and take care of yourself so you can just be functional. I accepted these parts of myself years ago as I was suffering through allergies that seemed to rule my life. Interestingly, I think the modern world and all its fast – paced – ness is causing more and more of us to feel the suffering of not taking enough breaks!
And I not-so-suddenly find myself in a position of teaching the very tools that I’ve collected for myself over the years to help others move through their lives more healthfully. It is always my goal as a teacher to make yoga very approachable. There are plenty of pictures of slim fit yogis doing crazy backbends and advanced poses, but this has never been my motivation as a practitioner, and it is definitely not my motivation as a teacher. My motivation is this: take time for yourself, so you can be your best self, so you can enjoy your life and the advantages that lie all around you.
That’s it. That’s why I get on my mat, its why I have to continue to get on my mat if I want those benefits, and its what I hope to teach (along with healthy form so as not to cause injury) to my students.
In the last few years, I’ve used February as a time to reach out to my “framily” and remind them how much a part of my life they are. And this year, as I augment my skills around my business, entertainmentjill.com, I decided to create an audio picture poem to go with the whole thing. The video is posted at the top of this post, and I hope it reminds or inspires you to complete your own cycle of love back to yourself in whatever ways that you need.
Happy Leap Year!!