How Yoga Changed My Life & Will Change Yours

sunsetyoga

Photo from Instagram.com

 

I have secondary trauma due to working as a service provider for victims of violent crimes and hearing first-hand about their traumatic experiences. Some symptoms I have suffered from and overcome are similar to those of PTSD:  increased stress, anxiety, disruption of perceptions of personal safety, burnout, minimization, and negative views of the world. Between 40% and 85% of “helping professionals” develop vicarious trauma, compassion fatigue, and/or high rates of traumatic symptoms, according to compassion fatigue expert Francoise Mathieu .

With a solid support system of friends and family, as well as a great self-care plan, I successfully battle my secondary. One of the things that has helped change my life for the better is yoga. I have been practicing almost ritually for three years now. There is nothing better at the end of a stressful day than a solid Zen-sesh. Whether you are a teacher dealing with crazy kids all day, or a top business woman sealing deals, yoga can and WILL change your life. It has drastically changed mine.

Here are a few reasons that Yoga will change your life:

1) Yoga is a non-judgment workout

Whether you are a beginner or advanced yogi, you can make your workout your own. The goal in yoga is to be present in the moment, forget about all the stress of daily life, and just BE. How many times can you say that you actually do this in a day, week, or even year? Yoga forces you to just BE yourself and not be “checking in” anywhere on social media. It invites you to check out.

2) Releases stress and calms the mind of anxiety

When you practice yoga with Ujjayi breathing, you become your most calm self. By being in really difficult poses and maintaining steady breath, yoga teaches you how to be calm in stressful situations.

3) Increases Flexibility, Balance, & Strength

I have seen some yoga instructors in some pretty amazing shape. Sometimes you don’t even realize the intense workout you are giving your body. And if you try hot yoga, the workout you get is unreal! My core strength and balance has improved immensely since I started practicing yoga and have continued to maintain a healthy weight.

4) Positive Thinking & Inner Peace

Every time I leave yoga, I find myself thinking very clearly and sometimes even experience a “yoga high”. I always have a sense of fulfillment that I cannot achieve with any other workout. A yoga teacher I had once compared yoga to cleaning your house. You need to clean the windows, clean your closet, and do laundry in order to feel new. Yoga is like cleaning your body and pressing the re-start button.

5) Confidence Booster

Yoga allows you to set small goals for yourself and actually achieving them is the best feeling. If you practice consistently you will see the results as you master poses that first seemed impossible. When I was able to do my first back bend, I felt like I conquered the world. It is all about persistence and progress that builds confidence and allows you to bring that confidence off your yoga mat and into the world.

What are you waiting for WiLabers? Become the yogi you want to be today. Check out some local amazing indoor and outdoor yoga classes and events below. I have to say, I have tried almost every yoga studio in Boston so trust me when I say these classes rock. Namaste on!

keep calm and namaste

Photo from http://www.keepcalm-o-matic.co.uk/

 

Exhale Back Bay // Core Fusion Yoga  Tue 5:00pm Th 5:00pm Fri 10:15 am

Exhale Battery Whaf // Core Fusion Yoga M 7:15pm Th 6:10pm

Back Bay Yoga Studio // Hip Hop Yoga $5 & $10 drop in classes weekly

South Boston Yoga // Hot Yoga M- Thu 6:00 & 7:45pm, F 6:00pm

Sat 10:00am Sun 10:00 am & 6:15pm, First class $5/ 2 weeks $25 new students

North End Yoga New students: 30 days $30

Eastside Yoga & Fitness // Yoga Scuplt M 6:15pm T 6:00am W 5:00pm Th 7:30pm

Hip Hop Yoga Fr 6:15 pm, New Students: 2 weeks for $25

OUTDOOR YOGA WITH FREE CLASSES!

Outdoor Yoga by CorePower Yoga, sponsored by Social Boston Sports & Keel Vodka

Sterling’s Patio, Downtown Boston, $8, June 9th 7-8pm

Intercontinental Hotel

Saturdays 9:30am, Memorial Day-Labor Day// FREE

Boston Common Frog Pond

June 4th– August 27th, Thursdays 6-7pm// FREE

 Spectacle Island Harbor Cruise & Island Yoga

Saturdays beginning June 20th-Sept 5th 10:15 am// FREE

Sunset Yoga, Sponsored by Esplanade Association & Athleta

Wednesdays – 6:00pm, Begins on July 15th// FREE

Fiedler Field (Arthur Fiedler Memorial Head)

Athleta, Newbury Street, Boston

Free indoor yoga/workout classes monthly

Mother/Daughter Yoga on May 2nd (refreshments/chair massages) as well as Nantucket Yoga Festival class Sunday, May 17th 10:00am

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: CHRISTINE BERARDINO

I’m an advocate in law enforcement and am passionate about women’s rights advocacy. I received my Bachelor of Arts from the University of New Hampshire in 2011, with a dual major of Psychology and Justice Studies.

Boston, MA | Twitter

Read more about and from Christine: Christine’s WiLab Profile