Stephanie P.

When I first started my yoga practice with Josephine two years ago I didn’t realize that there would be other positive benefits in addition to improved physical health that would manifest heavily in other areas of my life. By being taught how to utilize the principles and meaning behind movements within our yoga practice and apply them to daily life I have expanded in my approach to “living” where needed and have become more engaged, aware, mindful, productive, calm, and confident – basically more awake and enlightened. I have personally learned to accept, take ownership, and full responsibility of the choices I have made in the past and of the choices I continue to make. I have applied concepts from my practice such as taking risk, standing firm, patience, and focus that have become helpful to me in challenging situations that I have faced. 

Through intuitive yoga practice, I am learning how to tune in to and listen to my intuition or inner guide, something I had not truly acknowledged or understood before. Like the other principles taught and applied, strengthening and learning how to listen to my intuition, which is essentially like another muscle, has helped to better navigate life’s uncharted waters and has aided me in making important and sound decisions. 

My overall yoga practice has also given me another outlet for connecting and building relationships. I’ve found that individuals in my groups as well as Josephine have become that extra support and encouragement when needed. I have expanded in this area by being open to a different form of yoga with partners rather than focusing on my own individual practice. A combination of partnering on certain positions and group work encourages you to trust more, take others into consideration, be vulnerable in a safe environment, to let go, communicate needs effectively, and frankly have fun in an intimate group setting! 

Ultimately as I expand week to week/month to month I have found that the more I continue to commit, remain open to learning, being challenged, strengthening spiritually and physically, the more I am able to give back to my loved ones in constructive ways and make a positive and healthy impact on others, even if it’s in small ways. As I continue expanding and growing in certain areas I discover other expansion as my goals, priorities, and needs evolve and change. I am excited to see where this helps to guide and lead me! 

One specific example of where my expansion in my practice has helped was in dealing with a health related issue. I recently had to have a biopsy performed on a lump detected on one of my breasts which was ultimately found to be benign. Where I would normally jump to conclusions and panic (….which I immediately did after discovering, we’re not perfect!) I was able to quickly work on adjusting my mindset by utilizing meditation and breath work techniques to help keep things in perspective for myself, lessen any anxiety that crept up, remain in the present, and as positive as I was capable of. I also engaged in conversation about yoga during the procedure when the doctor and nurse commented about my deep breathing (trying to control my heart palpitations which I’m sure many of you can relate). The doctor and nurse completely opened up and said how great yoga was, etc. This made the time with them actually pleasant, less stressful, and distracted me from what was actually going on. We had something in common and of interest that was positive to talk about in a relatively serious and depressing environment! This all helped in the two weeks leading up to test results and during the month of recovery from the procedure. Thanks to this experience I am motivated to continue to build and prepare through my practice for all of life’s unforeseen obstacles and challenges. 

I am continually grateful for Josephine and the skills and knowledge she has imparted to me. Most importantly I value her authenticity, heart of gold, talent as a healer and teacher, and genuine care and friendship.

Benjamin Wilkins