We’ve all said it to someone when we aren’t acting our normal selves: “I’m just feeling stressed!” We let life get the better of us by letting the small things snowball into big things and all of a sudden, we are having panic attacks and stress related physical illnesses. We tend to rush through life at a million miles an hour – taking every call, reading every message and making sure to continually set our standards higher and higher.
It is human nature to want to achieve things. We want to be successful and not only that, we want to be the best at things. It is the ‘food chain’ mentality that as we go up the ladder, we feel more important – but we can often take on this challenge too quickly, and at what cost? There is a great quote that says “You spend your health trying to gain wealth – but then will have to spend that wealth on trying to save your health”.
It is much better, and a sign of great maturity, when you can slow down and let go of things that don’t need your attention. You ‘re-center’ yourself as they say and really focus on what is important and what is not worth stressing about.
While discussing this with a qualified yoga instructor, brand creator and self-made ‘Inspirer’, Che Dyer, I came to learn a lot about the power of slowing down. Che first got into yoga when a friend of hers was doing the instructors course in London. She started daily practices and was immediately hooked. She has now been in the ‘slow down’ industry for over 4 years now. Che teaches 4 different yoga styles, over 60 classes a month and earned 500 hours of practical training in the UK and India. On top of all of this, she has built a yoga & lifestyle brand with over 10,000 followers on Instagram and an online creative platform.
So, it’s safe to say – she is a busy bee! But she still finds time to slow down and help others slow down and believes that this, is the key to her success. Luckily enough – she found some time to share why she feels it is so important to slow down if you want to ramp up your life.
Q. Yoga transformed your life – in a career way but also – you reached a different level of happiness in doing it right?
A. Yoga has transformed my life, and my career! Being able to guide people to slow down and tune into their bodies is something that I’m SO grateful for. Helping them slow down, helps me too. Yoga truly is a transformation, healing practice and I am so privileged to get to share it with other people to help them heal, transform and reach new levels of happiness and joy - just as yoga has brought those things to me.
Q. Do you see a difference in the people who do yoga and those who don’t – personality wise – and if so – what??
A. I think people who practice yoga have better tools and practical ways to be able to deal with difficult situations than those who do not. It’s not to say that people who practice yoga don’t find themselves feeling frustrated, sad, angry etc. - they just have better self-awareness and are able to manage their responses to a situation and select their emotional response through choice and a more grounded place. I find that those who practice yoga are generally calmer and more present than those who do not. They are more grounded.
Q. What is one of the biggest blocks you see when teaching people? The most difficult part for them to grasp.
A. The most difficult thing for people to understand is that yoga is NOT about being able to touch your toes. Sometimes that can really hinder people from stepping into a yoga class or studio because they feel “they are not good enough at yoga” or “they are not flexible or enough”. This is the biggest block for people. I think it’s because this what we SEE of the yoga practice - are the physical postures – you see posters of people in crazy positions and think – I could never do that, but really it runs a LOT deeper than that – there is a spiritual side to it
Q. Where is the line between physical and mental happiness? Or is it all just intertwined?
A. I think physical well-being leads to mental well-being and mental well-being leads to physical well being. The more you look after and train your mind, the more the mind wants to make healthy choices for the body. The healthier your body feels, the easier it is to sit, be still and train the mind. So it’s definitely a self-fulfilling system.
Q. Other than the obvious health benefits of Yoga – what are the other benefits?
A. Yoga is fantastic for so many things! The obvious being the strengthening and toning of the body and the releasing of physical tension. It also brings us greater body awareness so that we are more readily able to pick up subtle imbalances in our body and posture and take action to develop strength our mobility where it is needed.
The not so obvious benefits of yoga are: it has an incredibly calming effect on the central nervous system. When we focus on breathing – we activate the parasympathetic nervous system - which is our rest and digest system of the body (ie: the calm state). We spend so much time in our sympathetic (stress) system in the body that it is crucial that we prioritize the calmer nervous system. When we do, we are calm, alert and able to think clearer.
Q. We tend to live really busy lives these days – and keep adding more – so what would you say to someone who’s excuse might be “I don’t have time to take up Yoga”?
A. Yoga doesn’t have to be a huge time out of your day - 10 mins of meditation in the morning is also a form of yoga. A daily 10 minute mediation practice will change your life, I guarantee it.
Once you start noticing the profound benefit that sitting for 10 mins a day can have on your mind and body - I think you will be quickly inspired to dedicate more time to making yourself feel good! Who doesn’t want to feel like their best self!?
Q. Stress, anxiety and panic are some of the most common mental issues people face today – how would you see yoga being able to help with these issues?
A. As I mentioned, we spend so much of our time in the sympathetic or stress-system of the body - watching the news, drinking coffee, intense workouts, work deadlines, conflict conversations, daily life struggles, rushing - are all examples of ways in which we activate the sympathetic or stress system in the body. We need to have a balance of the sympathetic and the parasympathetic system so that we can lower our levels of stress, anxiety and panic.
Q. By slowing down – and focusing – you become more aware of problem areas. Yoga does this for the body – how do you believe someone can do this for the mind?
A. Yoga does this for the body AND the mind. The word “yoga” means “unite” or “yoke” and it is the uniting of body and mind – unfortunately in the Western world, “yoga” is seen as just physical poses. We do these physical poses only to find a way to sense of our full selves. We include meditation and concentration within that “flow state”. In the yoga practice the body and mind are not separate entities. Simply sitting still and meditating (which is a form of yoga) is a way to bring mental stillness to our mind and body.
Q. Any tips on relieving stress – reducing anxiety and generally feeling more in control of life?
A. My top three tips would be: Practice yoga! Practice yoga! Practice yoga! But I would also say, getting outside often, being in nature. Moving your body every day. Positively affirming yourself. Surrounding yourself with good vibe people. Sitting quietly at the end of every day reflecting. Meditating. Creating something with your hands for the pure purpose of creating. Writing a gratitude list daily.
Q. If you could host a one on one yoga session with someone famous – who would it be and why?
A. I’d love to have a yoga session with Rachel Brathen - she’s a huge inspiration of mine and I would love to learn from her. I’d like to be the student for once – to continue learning and growing! Which is what I think contributes to mental well-being!
And check out this One Minute Mantra about taking a time out, for YOU:
ARE YOU A POSITIVE PERSON WITH A STORY TO TELL?
EMAIL ME & YOU COULD BE FEATURED!