Riding Waves During the Holiday Season

During the holidays, we often end up giving a lot to others – not in the terms of physical gifts, though this also may be true.  We give our time, our emotions, our energy – so with all of this giving to others, how do we still show up for ourselves? 

-Nicole Scott– 2020 VYC Ambassador – Squamish

Nicole stepped onto the mat in my first yoga class 10 years ago – it was a pre-registered hatha series that I had signed up for with a group of friends as a new, social, fitness activity to try together. Little did she know at the time that this was only the beginning of my journey with yoga. She found more consistency in her practice while going through post-secondary school. It was a time in her life when she was faced with high emotional stress. It was during this time when she realized how valuable yoga was as a way to get present to both her physical and emotional body. It became even more magical when she first realized that by showing up to a class full of strangers, without any interaction or words, she could feel supported. She could feel accepted. She could feel like she belonged. She had found my kula.

Nicole eventually took the plunge and completed a 200 hour teacher training. Since then she has completed further teacher trainings in vinyasa yoga and acro yoga and actively teach both of these in Vancouver and Squamish, BC. Her hope as a teacher is to continue to grow the acro community in Squamish. She strives to offer yoga classes that are accessible to all people, to hold space in such a way that meets them where they are at. She hopes to facilitate a way for them to connect to their bodies via their breathe and movement.

There is a water element that lives inside every one of us. We ride its wave as we ebb and flow through every action, every interaction, every day – through our whole life. While I think it is natural to intend and plan for the highs of this journey, through our lived experiences we are reminded that there are also times of turbulence that we need to be able to navigate.  

Sometimes these challenges are obvious and easy to recognize, i.e. getting fired from your job, separating from a partner, being in conflict with friends or family, experiencing financial stress etc. They consume our energy and are at the forefront of our minds.  Other times, our struggles are subtler and we may not have the same awareness that they are even a part of us. We dismiss them and deem them insignificant because of their size – but with this, we forget that that there is strength in numbers. Over time, all of these little things slowly build and all of a sudden, we feel blindsided with what has now become a tidal wave.  This latter scenario resonates with me during this time of the year especially. 

During the holidays, we often end up giving a lot to others – not in the terms of physical gifts, though this also may be true.  We give our time, our emotions, our energy – so with all of this giving to others, how do we still show up for ourselves? How do we stay present and mindful to our own needs?  How do we find balance while riding a lot of small waves of social obligation, expectation, and various emotions? For me, it starts with a simple act – showing up to my mat. By doing this I subsequently also am gifted breathe, space, time, freedom; it is the gift of opportunity to reconnect and invest in self. Presence > presents.