This is the last post of the month where we’ve been exploring the topic of self-care. My intention has been to have us improve our relationship with taking good care of ourselves. This is obviously a continuous learning. But occasionally bringing a sharper focus to it will undoubtedly foster feeling ease in our lives. I believe that improving this sense of ease is as important as building up our muscles, cultivating flexibility or exercising our brains.
When I woke up on Wednesday morning this week with an extremely sore shoulder, I was annoyed. I knew I should put the brakes on.
Did I want to and did I? Of course not! First I tried to figure out what I might have done to create such a painful shoulder. I went over the previous day’s activities and the day before, too. It was very mysterious, as I couldn’t think of anything I’d done out of the ordinary.
Years ago I had osteoarthritis of both hips. I had hip replacement surgery in 2010 and have gone from strength to strength since then.
However the period when I was first diagnosed was hell for me. My ego felt crushed like a stepped-on grape. I was convinced that the orthopaedic surgeon’s diagnosis spelled career suicide for me as a yoga teacher. The idea of my sporting artificial hips filled me with dread and resistance.
I certainly didn’t want any yoga students to know I was less than perfect. I only wanted to present a healthy, ever-youthful image. […]
I want to address a question raised by one of my readers, Katrina Hinton, about a recent post, Take Care: Self-Reflection and Constructive Feedback. Katrina was a bright and enthusiastic yoga teacher trainee at Nature Care College back when I was part of the yoga training faculty. Now Katrina is an established yoga teacher in the ACT.
Katrina’s comments below were useful in helping me clarify the common idea that another person can hold up a mirror to help you understand yourself.
I love the honesty in your posts Eve. […]
The subject of ‘self-care’ is a complex one
Heather Hyde, my friend, colleague and sometimes student has generously offered her thoughts on the subject of self-care for Yoga Suits Her. I especially appreciate the way she has opened up the whole topic for us and questioning why we women are not better at self-care and how we might improve our skills. […]
When Indulging Becomes Self-Care
When we first moved to Mitchells Island, we hadn’t yet winterised our house. Like a lot of people, we had mostly completed the interior but still needed to install a fireplace and block-out curtains. That first winter was painfully cold. Temperatures at night hovered around 3 degrees, with high winds and an unseasonable amount of rain.
There’s a windless, sheltered spot on one of our decks. During the day if the sun came out, I would grab fifteen minutes of unmitigated rays. […]
It might be an expression that’s been around for years, but I’ve just woken up to what a great one expression it is: self-advocacy.
It’s similar in meaning to self-care. But ‘self-care activist and mentor’, Christy Tending says it’s just the beginning. In her blog post, she says:
The art of self-advocacy means boldly declaring what we need in order to feel whole and well and like ourselves.
I was reminded of how advocating for ourselves can be a life or death matter when I read the news yesterday. […]
Restorative yoga helps you recover from illness
As I started up my Take Care blog series last week, I was reminded by my friend Lesley of the healing properties of restorative yoga practice. Lesley speaks from experience when she writes:
Dearest Eve, thank you for your article. As you know, I have used restorative yoga and yoga nidra to support my recovery from illness. It has helped in so many ways – supporting my immune system, helping with pain management & reduction (fibromyalgia), reducing fear/anxiety, and keeping me smiling through some very difficult times. […]
Am also encouraged by recent findings that the body may cease aging when one is past 91. The study (reported in a 2016 New Scientist) by Michael Rose (a professor of evolutionary biology), says that if you are lucky enough to live that long, you stop ageing. He notes that one’s health may not improve but it certainly does not get any worse. Whilst that advice is far not mainstream, population statistics do show that ageing seems to stop at 93 – and does not speed up again until we get a telegram from Queen Elizabeth (the Last) at 100.
Thus, if one makes it to 99, you are no more likely to die at any given point than someone of 93. (From 110 plus may be a different matter but I’ll let you know). …
In the absence of internet information, I decided to create my own holistic way of dealing with my upcoming surgery.
I started talking with my friends to share my journey. The simple fact that I was willing to be open and vulnerable helped eliminate any residual shame.
I started keeping a journal in which I could collect information on hysterectomies, and more importantly, write down questions and feelings as they arose. …