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02 Jun
Posted by Nikola Ellis

COVID-19 and your un-yogic thoughts

 

Has COVID-19 brought up strong and unpleasant feelings for you? Here are some things I've heard from yoga teachers recently:

 "I'm so stressed about money because I've lost so many of my classes in recent months. It feels really un-yogic to think about money all the time."

“The anger I'm feeling about this situation is so corrosive. It keeps bubbling up and I hate myself for it.”

“I know I'm supposed to live in the present moment, but I'm constantly worrying about my future as a yoga teacher."

 

At the heart of these statements lies the conviction that feeling stressed, worried or angry  is a bad thing. It’s un-yogic. Where did so many of us get that idea? How did we come to believe that being a yoga teacher means vanquishing all feelings except that elusive ‘bliss’ state that only Instagram yogis seem to master?

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25 May
Posted by Nikola Ellis

When a student has a negative reaction to your teaching

This is my 'I can't believe this is happening to me on a live group Zoom call' face: 

 

Has a student ever told you that the practice you just taught made them feel terrible? 

 

It just happened to me.

 

This morning, I was delivering a live online tutorial for the Adore Online Meditation Teacher Training program. I was joined by 28 wonderful students from all around Australia, plus a few calling in from overseas. 

 

I taught the group a simple breathing technique, inviting them to gently extend their exhalation a little. At the end, one student exclaimed how wonderful she felt. Another said it had cured her headache. But one student had a very different reaction.

 

In the middle of a live online tutorial, this student made it clear that the practice had made her feel lousy. She said she'd felt a tonne of resistance and was now feeling agitated. That wasn't part of the plan.

 

So how did I respond? Well, we were recording the tutorial so you can find out for yourself. Moments before this clip starts, a student on this call told everybody that the practice I'd just taught had made her feel bad. Here's what I said:

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11 May
Posted by Nikola Ellis

Grounding Yoga for Difficult Days

These are difficult days. Our lives, work, relationships and environments are shifting radically and many of us are struggling to stay positive. This is when we need yoga most. 

 

The first step is to get grounded. That's a real challenge when everything around you is whirling at high speed.

 

But you can do it. You can create a calm centre from which to decide how you respond to what's going on in the world. And you can teach your students how to do that too.

 

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31 Mar
Posted by Nikola Ellis

Your students need calm - here's your free meditation e-course

 

We could all do with a big dose of calm right now. The anxiety, stress and fear generated by the COVID-19 crisis is real. Governments are ramping up mental health services to cope with the fall-out. My students, some of whom have been resistant to the idea of meditating for years, are asking for more meditation and relaxation in (online) class.

 

Several of the yoga teachers I mentor have asked for more meditation resources, so I've developed a free meditation mini e-course for you and your students. In this interactive online course, you'll learn:

 

  • The neuroscience of meditation - WHY it works
  • How to practice and teach 3 different meditation styles
  • How yoga and meditation work together
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10 Mar
Posted by Nikola Ellis

Three reasons why yoga teachers are scared of teaching meditation

I used to be scared of teaching meditation in my yoga classes. Here’s why:

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11 Jan
Posted by Nikola Ellis

Tips for teaching meditation - preparation

Do you want to teach your students to meditate but don't know where to start? Meditation can be difficult at first and finding ways to make it accessible to your students can be challenging.

 

One of the things that can make learning to meditate much easier is doing some preparation work first. After all, you wouldn't teach somebody a headstand in their very first yoga class. Even when you do teach somebody headstand, you wouldn't teach them until you were sure they'd prepared properly with poses that build their strength, balance and focus.

 

It's the same with meditation. If you jump in cold, students are likely to find it much harder to sit in silent meditation for very long. So how do you help students prepare to meditate? This video makes it easy.

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13 Nov
Posted by Nikola Ellis

The 20 Second Meditation Technique

Have you ever tried to do a regular meditation practice, only to find yourself constantly distracted by ‘more important’ things? Here’s the secret: save yourself 20 seconds and you’ll gain several hours to dedicate to your practice.

Willpower alone is not enough to get us into a daily yoga or meditation routine, according to psychologist Shawn Achor. In his book, The Happiness Advantage, he demonstrates the 20 Second Rule that really will get you on your meditation cushion every day. Discover how this simple technique makes meditation easy...

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16 Sep
Posted by Nikola Ellis

Yoga mantras for healing

 

 

Are mantras part of your mediation practice? You don’t have to be a great singer to chant mantras (you can even recite them silently) and once you get the hang of it, you'll be blown away by how powerful they are.

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07 Mar
Posted by Nikola Ellis

Why the mindfulness revolution is short-changing students

 

Mindfulness is the hottest ticket in town right now. Celebrities, media, self-help books and doctors are all touting the magical properties of mindfulness meditation. And it's true that there have been some convincing studies to show the benefits of mindfulness. But is the mindfulness revolution all it’s made out to be?

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13 Nov
Posted by Nikola Ellis

Why you find meditation difficult - and how to fix it

Many people learn to meditate because they hear it's a great stress buster. But, ironically, it’s hard to meditate when you’re stressed. When the body and mind are filled with tension, it can be very uncomfortable to sit still in meditation. This is why many people find meditation challenging or believe they ‘can’t’ meditate. We know that meditation is good for us, but we don’t know how to prepare to meditate.  Like all good things, meditation is always better if we add a little preparation.

 

Read on to discover a simple ritual to prepare for a relaxed and satisfying meditation.

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