I personally live with Lupus and Hypothyroidism as well as a myriad of symptoms caused by both diseases.I’ve been struggling with digestive problems, Raynaud’s Phenomenon, PTSD, photosensitivity, heat intolerance and more for many years. This YogiNest specialty is very personal to me. I know firsthand how debilitating living with a chronic disease can be. It begins at the time of diagnosis as the stages of grief are triggered; denial, anger, bargaining, depression and the focus of this practice, acceptance. The stages of grief are only a small part of the problem. The symptoms of the disease itself and the side effects of symptoms and medications one might be taking are a tremendous burden. Even after remission the psychological impact is considerable due to the lingering stigma of that particular disease. This can cause extreme stress and even depression. It’s a lot to handle and many lose hope. Though yoga is not a cure, it is life changing and is the reason I am currently in remission.
A typical 90 min yoga class at a studio is a wonderful experience for the average person, but for someone with a chronic or terminal illness it may be impossible. Sometimes it can even cause more damage than good. It can be quite depleting and trigger the stress response, causing flares and disturbances in the body. However, a small group class or private session crafted specifically for you and your illness could change your life. Focusing on body awareness, breath with movement and meditation in a safe, comfortable and relaxing setting can shift your symptoms all together. The key here is mindful yoga that’s being offered in a caring and nonjudgmental environment.
For me yoga was the only form of physical activity I could do without triggering symptoms, throwing myself into a major flare, ending up in the hospital, or on bedrest for days on end. I was finally moving my body and it felt amazing. What was even more amazing was the psychological transformation that ensued. Combining movement with breath awareness, meditation, and restorative sessions was helping me feel less angry, sad and depressed. No other form of exercise did this for me. For the first time in a long time I had no anxiety surrounding the movement of my body. It became the safest and most effective form of exercise and therapy for myself and my disease.
This practice can literally shift the way you feel about your illness. Yoga can help you become an ally with your illness instead of letting it define or defeat you. Living with negative feelings about our illness does not serve us and only causes more stress, anxiety and depression, which can only cause more illness. Yoga allows you to connect with yourself like nothing else can. It teaches you how to look inside, to listen to the messages your body is sending you, and to be compassionate and patient as you listen to these cues and give your body the care it needs. Yoga elicits hope and optimism. This can help make coping with your illness easier. You’ll build strength, physically and mentally, and improve how the body handles pain and stress. Yoga can alleviate symptoms and side effects of medication and even boost your immune system. You’ll have more energy, you’ll feel relaxed, rejuvenated and have a higher quality of life.
YogiNest also offers family and friend sessions and recognizes how hard our illness can be on our loved ones. This emotional support is imperative to our healing and theirs. I’ll build a relationship with your medical community by communicating with your doctors to make sure the program we build together is complementing your current medical plan.
This leads us to acceptance, the final stage of grief. Once we accept the reality of our situation, take the wheel in our own hands, recognize our power and understand that we can make a difference in our own lives, nothing is impossible. Let YogiNest help you find your power. Let me show you how yoga changed my life and how it can change yours too.
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