People assume that, as a Yoga teacher, I am always “zen”. Think again... by Blanca Wennekes
People assume that, as a Yoga teacher, I am always “zen”. Well, think again: the reason why I immerse myself in practices around releasing, relaxing and restoring and feel the need to share them, is that I know from my own experience how hard it is to deal with stress and live a busy life. So the practices that I share in The Conscious Movement Program, my yoga classes and beyond are a total note to self as well.
I can be quite stressed and tension tends to get stuck in my body. I am very sensitive not only to my own level of stress but also to stress and emotions that are not mine. Maybe you recognize this? I know that lots of people deal with this. So, I am always looking for ways to reduce this tension and give space to what causes this tension.
Generally, and especially in challenging times we tend to hold a lot of tension. Tension from stress we experience in daily life. Tension comes from our own emotions, sometimes from others. And coming from the world around us. Insecurities. Unsafety. Maybe also excitement if I think about it.
And all of this can get stuck in our bodies if we do not release it and create space to relax and restore. If the tension builds up and is not released, this might manifest in other ways, like fatigue, illness, or all sorts of other disbalance or even dis-ease. This makes it important to choose a practice like yoga, meditation, dance or any other practice that offers a way to release, relax and restore to integrate in your daily life.
But also try to stay away from a “I must do this” feeling. See what resonates with you and just give it some time to settle in your system. And it maybe becomes a “I want to do this” or “wow, this could really serve me right now!”.
Another aspect of tension in the body is linked to our nerve system. In a nutshell: our sympathetic nervous system is overactive and the parasympathetic nervous system is completely overruled by that. The sympathetic nervous system functions like a gas pedal in a car. It triggers the fight-or-flight response, providing the body with a burst of energy so that it can respond to perceived dangers. The parasympathetic nervous system acts like a brake and gives our whole being the opportunity to relax and restore.
That’s why you want to work from releasing tension to slowly working towards allowing the body to relax and restore. Coming back to practice this more often will for sure benefit you in your daily life. You will feel empowered to have tools you can always come back to whenever you need it or maybe even integrate in your daily routines so they will prevent you from really needing them.
After reading the words above, take five or more minutes to sit and feel and write down some reflections:
- What role does stress play in your life?
- Do you experience now that you hold on to tension in your body?
- What usually helps you to release any build-up tension?
- What practice could you do on a regular basis to release tension?
For rasalila I’ve made a special online Release ~ Relax ~ Restore course. I would love to see you there.