I know that traditionally a yoga practice about self love means lots of heart openers - but to me it includes anything but. Sometimes backbends exacerbate a lordotic lower spine that causes me pain, and - because they look so pretty in pictures - makes me edge towards ‘goal orientated’ yoga.
So what else can self love yoga look like? Well, healing. Which in turn means giving up all the things that make the destructive voices in your head louder. Those voices that tell you that your yoga practice needs to be herder, make you sweat more; that tells you you're weak; that you need to be more flexible. It is the voice that makes you feel like you need to work towards a specific shape or goal; rather than just enjoying the practice you first fell in love with.
I recently created a youtube class with no ‘goal’ or peak pose. It’s not about heart openers but instead slowly creating strength. There is lots of flowing and repetition because my hope is that you will loose yourself here, and in that find healing and peace away from the noise and expectations of yourself and the world around you. The class finishes with slower poses, for two reasons:
1. How nourishing, to physically slow your body, to allow and create relaxation and rest
2. It is usually in silence that those destructive voices become louder, and yet if we can learn to sit with them here, with discomfort, without distracting ourselves or moving out of the pose; if we can learn to instead direct our attention to slow and full breaths - to notice and yet remain calm; maybe we can bring that out into other areas of our lives too.
You can find the video on my YouTube channel HERE.