Guest Yoga teacher in May: Mirjana!

ANYTIME 5 WEEK COURSE Tues 2nd May- 31 may with MIRJANA (1)

Mirjana Laskovski is a qualified Hatha Vinyasa Sukhashanti Yoga teacher and Acupuncturist with more than 6 years experience working with clients in clinical practice, assisting them in the area of physical and mental well being.

Mirjana’s yoga classes will activate and engage your core, establish body/mind balance and exploring your edge within the teachings of Sukhashanti style yoga.

In the 5 weeks you will learn postures that will be suitable for all fitness levels as it can be modified to suit those who prefer a gentle practice or a vigorous challenge that will get you sweating.

Each class will begin with Sun Salutations and a sequence of postures – building the sequences as each week follows – focusing on alignment, breath and core.

You will leave each class feeling more embodied, physically and mentally stronger, calmer and motivated.

Update #1 July 2015

news letter business card

New Business Cards: The images are designed by my talented mother, Liz Martyn.

ॐ  Yoga Community Update #1  ॐ

UPDATE HIGHLIGHTS:

I am currently instructing at schools, one uni and two gyms and determined to build my little business with some new areas of focus such as an 8 week pre-natal course and school holiday yoga programs for kids over the Term 3 holidays!

First of all, “Thank You” to my yoga community for your unwavering support and belief in me. Whether you were employing me, helping me with venues, my graphics, taking  photos, collaborating or sitting down for business development chats or of course, for being one of my beautiful participants. I feel blessed.

NEXT SIX MONTHS, COMING UP!…

SCHOOL HOLIDAY PROGRAM SEPT 2015:

Yoga for teens and kids workshops over the school holidays: I am currently seeking a venue, again located in the Inner Eastern or Northern suburbs. I would certainly be delighted to work in school halls or local community centres. Do you have any kids interested?

TERM 3 and TERM 4…. More work with schools: Do you know any school or wellbeing programs who would like to work with my style of instructing?

Pre-Natal Yoga 8 week course: I hope to deliver an 8 week course on a weeknight evening, seeking venue.

Day-Long Retreats for people new to Yoga: I hope to deliver day long retreats on a weekend, this will include healthy lunch and snacks. I want to offer a getaway just outside of Melbourne. If you have any ideas for venues (E.g Dandenong, Torquay, Mornington Peninsular etc) where I could deliver a day long workshop please get in touch.

Develop online videos 5-15 minute stretch and calm Yoga sessions for your home or workplace:

I would love to find a video savvy professional who I could partner with on this project!

PREVIOUS SIX MONTHS: 

NEW BUSINESS CARD Contact me if you would like me to send you some business cards. Thanks to my mum, Liz Martyn, for creating such great images in watercolor.

DEVELOPING THE PRE-NATAL TOUCH: Professional development Inspired by the incredible rate of friends having their first babies I took the hint and now I am now a BABY BLISS PRE-NATAL certified instructor. I want to deliver a 6 week course and I am seeking a well located venue to deliver my next sessions. I would love to be running these by spring.

TEEN YOGA: High schools and a Uni I am excited to be working with three high schools at the moment. I work as part of their PE and Health & Wellbeing programs. I am working specifically with year 9 males and year 11 & 12 females. I am so delighted to be back in the “teen-space”. Since my facilitation work with Reach has wrapped up I have been searching for ways to bring my Yoga instructing to the teens. I am delivering two classes per week to Australian Catholic University students at the Fitzroy campus off Brunswick street. Its really fantastic to work with uni students who are training up in the health sciences themselves, learning to manage the stress and pressures of life. I love my 2 x 60 minute sessions at ACU!

KIDS YOGA For the first time I am working with grade 4 & 5 aged children. I am delivering workshops at Thornbury Primary school, blending yoga into their “Ancient India” main lesson studies. We are completing six weeks of 60 minute yoga. It’s an absolute pleasure to be in the Steiner environment and learning more about the 9-10-11 year olds of today, learning about what makes them tick.

YOGA IN GYMS I continue to deliver weekly classes at 10:30am Thursdays at the Richmond recreation centre.  Its great to have familiar faces drop into my session.  Monday evenings 7:30pm at EFM Canterbury (located inside Camberwell Girls Grammar school, Torrington st) continues on as well. My regulars to these classes are coming along so well in their strength and flexibility. I am continually impressed by their effort and focus. All levels welcome.

YOGA IN WORKPLACES: Collaboration with a Personal Trainer In March, Megan O’Connell (Mocca) and I delivered a collaborative 6 week series of Yoga-Personal Training sessions to Natalie and her fabulous team at LOFFT fashion agency in Richmond. We delivered theses sessions in the girls beautiful light filled studio exhibition space before they started their busy work days.

FIRST EVER! YOGA SHORT COURSE  Each sunday afternoon in January I had the great privilege to use the EFM Canterbury gym space to run my first ever 4-week yoga series. This course was aimed at beginners and I wanted to get these participants onto the yoga mat in a easy going and gentle fashion. A huge thanks to my friends and friends of friends who attended!

Believe in yourself!

Believe in Yourself!

Link

WHAT IS YOGA?

I guess Yoga is the lifestyle choice that people made before ‘lifestyle choice’ even existed! This is because its really an all encompassing practice: physical, mental, emotional and sometimes even spiritual.

YOGA: THE TRADITIONAL VIEW
Traditionally, Yoga is a structured pathway to become enlightened… Of course, ‘Enlightenment’ is a big call and to me it simply means to be working towards a state of peace with the world around you and the world inside you. You could also think of it as offering some practical steps (8 Limbs of Yoga) for you to live a purposeful and joyful life. Yoga can also offer ways to decrease our suffering.

WHERE DID YOGA COME FROM?
This yoga pathway is based on an ancient Indian sage Patanjali’s philosophy. It is a series of lessons entitled the Yoga Sutras and they are short teachings. They were written in sanskrit language about 2000 years ago and encourage eight big parts, or limbs if you will.

THE 8 LIMBS OF YOGA
According to the Yoga sutras you need to start with a focus on the external parts of your life, then you are ready to move into your internal world.

PEACE WITH THE EXTERNAL WORLD
Firstly, there are personal and social disciplines to master (think about non harm, non possessiveness, self study and surrender as some examples). Then you need to connect into your physical body with yoga poses (these are called asanas and are common to all Western yoga classes) and then you also start to control and master your breathing.

PEACE IN YOUR INTERNAL WORLD
The second four stages are internal. As you study and practice you will learn the discipline of sense withdrawal, then one-pointed focus followed by meditation and voila!  …enlightenment. They say it takes 12 years of highly disciplined practice to get enlightened so best to get started ASAP!

YOGA + EASING SUFFERING
As well as being a great physical workout, Yoga can also be considered as a psychological tool. Of course, it shouldn’t take the place of a decent counsellor and a healthy lifestyle (you still need to eat, sleep and chill out on the toxic materials entering your mind and body!). Yet, I truly believe that a strong yoga practice with a teacher who inspires you will encourage mindfulness and guide you towards ways of facing and releasing you from some of your suffering. I am talking- feeling less stressed, less depressed, increasing your purposefulness, confidence to believe in yourself! 
Over time, or even after just one class, you may learn to replace your suffering with increased self awareness and even feelings of integration and connection yourself and your world. This may come in the form of a more positive attitude, emotional state and boosted energy levels.

THE FIVE KLESHAS (AKA CAUSES OF SUFFERING) ACCORDING TO YOGA
In the Yoga sutra lessons five causes of suffering are outlined. The five causes of suffering in sanskrit are called Kleshas. They are are 1. spiritual ignorance, 2. ego or “I” attachment, 3. attachment to desire 4. avoidance and the biggest cause of suffering; 5. fear of death.

WAIT! WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT???
I will try to explain the first and last causes of suffering just briefly in my own words. Just so you know, there are hundreds of different essays and books that interpret these ancient teachings, so I humbly add my own interpretation here!

Firstly, spiritual ignorance can be understood as not seeing anything beyond the material world. When you are believing that you are just your body, your name, your history etc.. I guess that spiritual ignorance is believing that there is no inherent goodness in people, there is no spirit inside us. When you realise and accept that life is about change, loss, growth and facing the unknown you become aware, you become awake. You notice that there is a thread inside you that appeared when you were born and will be with you until you die, that it is something beyond your physical self. This is the start of overcoming ‘spiritual ignorance’.

FEAR OF LIVING

The final cause of suffering is the fear of death and it could be looked at as ‘fear of life’. If you flip over the same coin you start to see that a fear of death really describes fear of living life! Think about when you last spoke to a person who has faced their own death, or had a wake up call! Maybe someone close to them dying, or things changing suddenly and unexpectedly for them. You may notice that they started to embrace life with a new vigour. Letting go of “the little things” and pursuing the important things. Maybe they started to spend more time looking after themselves, connecting to their friends and family? Or chasing their dreams? The fear of looking stupid, or failing or whatever else has dropped away! To me, this is a wonderful potential of yoga practice- the chance to face your blockages, even start to face our mortality head on! Which is in turn helping us to face our own lives. As we lose our spiritual ignorance, we get so many more chances to stop and ask ourselves; what is really important to me? Is there anything I would like to change?

This guy, Arthur made some inspiring changes, spend 4 minutes watching this and you WILL be blown away!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX9FSZJu448

Stop, drop and roll: The End is here

Stop what you are doing.

Drop out of the rushing pace, the commitments, the agony of trying to “get it all done before December 25th or December 31st” The year is coming to a close.

Let’s roll out the year in two dimensions. On a page. Grab a pen and a piece of paper. Switch off your phone. Make a cup of tea. Sit in the sunshine and reflect. Roll out the year in black and white. Let yourself see it. Articulate it.

The beauty of looking backwards is that you are able to join the dots on things that at the time didn’t make much sense, get a healthy distance and objectivity (via words and descriptions) of your day to day life and of course, celebrate some things you have achieved and worked so hard on in 2014.

Here are a couple of inspiring links:
The first one is a bunch of questions you can ask yourself to structure your reflection on the year just passed.

http://www.appleseeds.org/angier_reflections.htm

Steve Jobs Stanford commencement speech. He tells a story about ‘connecting the dots’, ‘love what you do,if you haven’t found it yet. Keep looking. Don’t settle.’ ‘Remembering that I will be dead soon leaves only what is truly important. You are have nothing to lose. You are already naked’.