Firstly, let me introduce myself: My name is Bella, I'm a recently qualified yoga teacher and the new marketing intern for Yoga Quota. I am going to be writing a few posts for yoga quota about my own personal yoga journey, so let me tell you a bit about how I came to practice yoga...
Struggling and unable to cope
During my late teens, I was struggling and depressed. Overwhelmed by anxiety, unable to cope with the pressure of exams, looming university applications, and problems at home. I became desperate for a solution to my problems, and turned to medication. I was put on anti-depressants for about a year, and unlike other people I knew, it didn’t seem to work for me. I knew I needed something else. It wasn’t until I was diagnosed with an “incurable” neuro-otological disorder called Misophonia at age 17, that things began to change. I was introduced to mindfulness meditation by my mum and my audiologist as tool to help me cope with the disorder. For the first time, I began to feel a little more stability in my life, my practice calmed me and helped me to see life a little clearer, less clouded by my anxieties and emotions. I continued with this practice and managed to make my way through my sixth form career fairly successfully. However, although my ability to function had improved greatly, I still struggled often with the effects of Misophonia and the consequent anxiety.
And then I found yoga.
I came to yoga accidentally through dance. Dance had been one of my creative passions throughout secondary school, and so, whilst studying at college, I decided to pursue professional training at university. To help me improve my strength and flexibility ahead of auditions I purchased a yoga DVD to practice at home. It wasn’t anything special and at first, I’ll admit, I was a little bored. But like a lot of people coming to yoga for the first time, I was motivated by the promise of a slim, toned and flexible body.
I got much more than I had bargained for
As my auditions loomed, I began to practice yoga daily. Slowly deepening my knowledge and understanding of what I had thought was a purely physical practice. I began to understand and implement the use of breath and meditation alongside postures and began finding focus and relaxation in my practice. And maybe a couple of months into my consistent practice, I suddenly realised how calm and happy I was, my anxiety had simply faded away. The effects and stress from my problems with Misophonia had diminished dramatically, and for the first time in 10 years, I felt like I had found a “cure”. I was amazed that I could manage to get through my auditions almost stress free due to my daily yoga practice.
I found a deep respect for my practice
After this realisation, I found a deep amount of respect for the power of yoga and an intense excitement for how my yoga practice can change my life, I knew from that moment that this was something I wanted to share with others. I have now been practicing Yoga for over two years, and have just completed my 200hr teacher training with my wonderful and inspiring teacher Ravindra Singh Tomar. I have deepened my practice significantly over the past two years and I am excited to continue with my practice as a qualified teacher and share the joy of yoga with others!