Recently I’ve been feeling the excitement, perhaps the over-excitement, of life. With so many things on the go I got run down and decided to stop everything for awhile to get back to a healthy state. My Mentor, Tulshi Sen, always said that when things get overwhelming it’s time to stop everything and re-connect with your hearts desire.
These wise words have guided me through some intense times although when I first heard them I didn’t believe I could stop EVERYTHING. I now know that only by stopping can I change track both physically and emotionally.
Stopping got me thinking about how important it is for us to take care of ourselves as teachers. If we get sick or run down we can’t do what we love to do – teach. If we don’t acknowledge we’re sick and keep teaching, we spread sickness around instead of happiness.
By stopping, I saw I was getting robotic, completing tasks without experiencing any joy in doing them. I missed the signs of not eating well or not getting a good night’s sleep.
When I rested I realized three tips that were missing from the Health and Safety part of my Kids Yoga Teacher Training Curriculum. They help us stay healthy as teachers. These three simple health tips remind us to slow down, examine our habits, and sometimes stop altogether so we can do what we love:
- Wash Your Hands Between Classes
Recently a child I teach ended up in hospital for a week with a virus. If you teach multiple classes in a day you may be carrying a virus around from class to class. Slow down so you can wash your hands after each class. You’ll help stop the spread of illness from one class to the next and also to yourself.
- Sleeve Cough/Sneeze
When I was a kid we were taught to cover our mouth with our hand when we coughed or sneezed. That habit was so deeply ingrained in me it took months to change – even though it was obvious just how germ-y our hands and everything we touch will become if we cough into them.
The new etiquette: if you don’t have a tissue sneeze into your sleeve rather than your hand. This keeps your hands clean for when you touch other things like your yoga props or the children. Hopefully you know about this one, but I still see people covering their mouth with their hand – probably out of habit. Teach this to the children you see sneezing in your class as well and everyone will stay healthier!
- If you are Sick – It’s time to Stop
Teaching yoga is important but if you are sick it is a time to stop what you are doing and reconnect with what is important. If it means canceling a class then cancel it. I know it is hard to do, especially if you are self-employed, but it is worth it. What amount of money is more important than good health?
Yoga and meditation help us become the Masters of our Destiny. When we get run down we forget the power we have to change our lives. Stopping helps us realize that we don’t HAVE TO do the things that are causing us to be run down. The only thing we have to do is give ourselves the freedom to live a happy and healthy life.