slow, mindful yoga & small group classes in St Kilda, Balaclava, Elwood, bayside

Yoga Me Well Blog Archive

How to Stay on Track

 This YogaMeWell spring/summer term (at 4Dverse Creative Hub St Kilda), we’re practicing the art of STAYING or yoga and mindfulness on the mat.

We’re going to hold our postures longer, not to keep up with the trend toward Yin yoga or to ease open soft tissue. Our aim is to watch the fluctuations of mind in an effort to command greater steadiness.

A pure focus.

By staying in a pose longer than feels comfortable, we invite the mind to speak loudly. The yoga we do at YogaMeWell is relatively gentle, so the mind is most likely to speak its restlessness first: “Come on! What’s next?” “Maybe I’ll buy a pizza on the way home…”.

If staying does introduce a level of discomfort, we can take the opportunity to observe how the mind handles that: does it push malevolently through to chastise the body, or does it recognise and yield to this plea to ease off until the body is better nourished, rested or repaired. 

 

A MIND FIELD OF SUFFERING

The point is, ALL the trouble we get ourselves into in this life is caused by the activities of the mind. The yogic guidebook to peace, the Yoga Sutras, mentions this in its first breath: “citta vritti nirodha“, let us “still the fluctuations of the mind”. 

Our practice is always about harnessing that wild beast and leading it to focus.

While staying also eases us toward flexibility, and to gain strength, its real purpose is to encourage us, as students of this tumultuous life, to stand back from the relentlessness of hidden mental churning. We might gain a peek at how the mind directs our pathway using Free Will or Ego Stealth.

Through our practice on and off the mat, we can come to observe the decisions our Decision-Maker makes. We invite the Seer (whatever is behind the decision-making Ego mind) to stand forward and review the thought processes. Watching the mind from peaceful distance brings greater control over thoughts and subsequent actions.

If you feel inspired to join us, your mat awaits Tuesdays at 6:30pm or 7:35pm.

We are friendly faces and encouraging of each other. And we enjoy sharing our group practice. Each week, we uplift each other through our careful focus and dedication to regain balance.

It’s not about how you look or ‘perform’. Not at all. It’s about how you feel.

All levels of experience welcome. However if you have significant restrictions, these general classes may not be suitable. (Private classes are available to develop a personal practice.)

Term 4 begins Tues 9 October

Enrol now: 0409 473 162 or livmitchell@ozemail.com.au

I’m looking forward to meeting you when the time feels right. Until then, stay bright.

Cheery,
Liv

Liv Mitchell

Liv Mitchell is a hatha yoga teacher, relaxation instructor and freelance writer/editor who specialises in holistic wellbeing.

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Spring into Yoga!

I’ve done hard-bodied yoga with a humourless teacher and gently coo-ing classes with a sweet despairing one, flowing postures with an Earth Mother and cocooned myself in the comforting routine and community of one tradition. If you’ve lapsed over winter and are keen to get your mat rolling with a new class this Spring, here are some shopping tips… read more…

Liv Mitchell

Liv Mitchell is a hatha yoga teacher, relaxation instructor and freelance writer/editor who specialises in holistic wellbeing.

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Autumn’s Big Ask

red autumn leaves

Last week in class we enjoyed a heart based practice to prepare ourselves for the energies of autumn.

It’s time to come to ground after the fullsome, heady expression of summer. The leaves are falling to Earth, to dry, curl, morph into organic mass and return to elemental form.

Autumn prepares us for the deep introspection of Winter, should we choose to go there. It gives us time to ask the question “What must I release?” as the trees surrender their shelter and the southern hemisphere begins its retreat from exuberance into golden hued afternoons.

So, we worked with breath and movement to open the heart space in practice, the heart being the esoteric place of deepest knowing in order that it might reveal the blueprint. It knows what we need to surrender to move more fully into our whole selves. Should you choose to believe in such things, you might find irrefutable guidance there. And a committed yoga practice will tempt you to believe. It helps to explain the equilibrium and expansiveness, the exquisite peace we sometimes experience in savasana (relaxation) post practice.

We stayed in our postures to build the autumnal strength and stability we need to receive Winter’s revelations. “What safe pattern, place, person, perspective, Belief, must I release to live from my most powerful Self?” It’s wise to prepare for a heart-to-heart. It takes courage to hear and act on those answers. Self-sabotage being the safer route.

Even if we don’t ask the question, its roots crawl beneath our skin, weaving and tangling in discomfort until it finds a way to break through, all gnarly and ready to trip us up as we walk on and stumble, righting ourselves self-consciously,  pretending not to notice.

Liv Mitchell

Liv Mitchell is a hatha yoga teacher, relaxation instructor and freelance writer/editor who specialises in holistic wellbeing.

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