From feelings of disappointment and discouragement to those of contentment and balance: Sandrine Bremer spoke with us about her experiences while practicing the Second Series and how they have affected the way she shows up on and off the mat.

Inspiration for your practice

My Yoga Path

I first discovered yoga through a magazine article - I had been experiencing back pain and was looking for relief. Soon after I took my first Hatha Yoga class. Yoga became an irregular companion, it was really just another exercise alternative. I was fond of practicing the physical exercises, but there was no real philosophical connection in what I was learning and so my life continued on as usual without even knowing that there was something much more profound awaiting me.

It was in fact only when my then current relationship had ended that I was drawn inward to understand who I was and what my life and its "reality" truly meant. Yoga is a tool that can bring us to find inner peace. In the moment that I realized that yoga might be more than just a way to help me with some back pain or to keep me fit, I was inspired and motivated to find the right teacher to guide me in an in-depth training.

Samshaya –Sabotage from within

"A brain is as a brain does," is what Anna had told us in training. I would have to say that mine can do this particularly well. I spent quite a lot of time pondering things and thinking things through. My first considerations were about the timing of this misfortune and what caused the lumbago in the first place. Had I given and adjustment with poor posture? Was there something going on in my body or mind on that day that required more of my attention? Why was it that it had to happen right now - just when I was taking time to analyze my behavior patterns?

After a good four days of no improvement, the thought carousel went on: "What if this isn't really lumbago? What can it be? Who can help me? Will I ever get well again?" My mind was all tangled up in a web of fears, uncertainty, doubt, impatience, self-pity, and sadness which was dragging me down. I felt helpless, without support, and alone.

At the same time, I was pressuring myself with various expectations and high demands. "I have to work again," said the inner voice. Every week I had a guilty conscience for calling in sick to work. What do my colleagues and bosses think of me? I practice yoga but I can't even move. My life seemed to have come to a complete halt.

Cultivating Gratitude

Looking back, I am certain that this forced hiatus was and is a very valuable experience for me. This situation made me aware of things which I would not have otherwise seen with such clarity. Through this process I was able to see how much I had taken for granted, simple things from everyday life such as waking up fresh and well-rested, enjoying a nice walk, having a cup of tea, driving somewhere or even practicing yoga. After having to struggle accomplishing these simple things, I am able to really appreciate their value now that I have them back. I see how beautiful life can be and I am able to remain mindful and curious.

I wanted to share this experience because it might be helpful for others who are confronted with similar challenges, fears and doubts. I want to encourage you to be attentive and caring to yourself and to make the most of your life.

Sunshine always follows the rain.

Publication location

AYI Schulen
Ashtanga Yoga for you

Ashtanga Yoga for you

Halberstädter Str. 14, 38300 Wolfenbüttel, Deutschland