By Skye Adams
A few weeks ago I was grateful for the opportunity to return to my previous home of Austin, Texas, to study with my teachers there for a long weekend workshop filled with useful teaching tools, yin yoga, and humor, but also, and perhaps more importantly, intimate interaction and connection. I came away feeling whole and filled up to return to my career and my relationships here in Maine.
I have heard my students, friends, and family talk about the coming year, and many of their goals involve self-improvement, experience, discipline and restraint, or change. It made me wonder what is truly at the root of resolutions. Are we trying to be better people for ourselves, or for others? Maybe both.
Many of the skills I learned in my most recent teacher training are actually inherent in all of us, things that as humans we have forgotten in our ability to rationalize and reason, things like how to release accumulated trauma or stress in the body, how to actively listen, and how to connect deeply to the wholeness of which we are all a part. Perhaps in our desire to be more frugal, read more books, get a better bikini body, or do more yoga, we are actually seeking out these lost and forgotten parts of ourselves. And if we can become more in touch with our true selves, whether that is through nature, exercise, travel, writing, art, or a spiritual pursuit, then we are better able to connect to those we love, those in our community, and indeed every human.
Public yoga classes offer a safe space in a supportive community to find this connectedness. You hear it all the time: “Connect to your breath. Connect to your foundation.” When we pause to figure out where we are in space, all kinds of channels open for us. And we are all doing this on our mats. We are collectively unloading, regulating, coming back to our centers, and becoming once again whole.