Getting back to resuming my daily life and to teaching classes, I recognized that I fell into my usual patterns as a mother – caring for everyone else and forgetting about myself. It’s a common problem for most of us, whether you’re a caretaker or not. We have this tendency to put ourselves last as we come to the aid of a friend or step up to help a co-worker. Our act comes from a place of love and caring, but it can also leave us feeling depleted.
On an airplane, they always instruct you to put on your oxygen mask first before helping others. This isn’t meant to be a selfish act. It’s because if you don’t take care of yourself first (and end up passing out from lack of oxygen), how can you really help others?
With that in mind, this sequence is simple and meant to be practiced in a very slow and methodical manner. Lengthen the inhales and exhales. Stay in each pose for 5 to 7 breaths or longer. There’s no rush, no hurry. No need to do anything but reserve time and space to practice self-care so that you can recognize your own tenderness, kindness and openness.
60 Minute Sequence: Self-Care
- Balasana – hands in prayer behind the head, surrender
- Extend arms and crawl hands to either corner of the mat, stretch
- Rise to kneeling, clasp hands at low back, open the chest
- Adho mukha/downward facing dog – pedal feet, hip circles
- Half salutations x3
- Surya namaskar A x3 (1x bhujangasana/cobra, 2x urdhva mukha/upward dog)
- *Utkatasana – prayer twist, urdhva hastasana/arms overhead, prayer twist other side
- Vinyasa (plank, chaturanga, urdhva mukha, adho mukha)
- Virabhadrasana I, Vira II, Utthita parsvokonasana/extended side angle, Reverse warrior
- Prasarita padottanasana A [headstand option], open twist
- Repeat other side *
- Marichyasana C
- Baddha konasana
- Eka pada raja kapotasana/pigeon
- Set bhandasana/bridge
- Jen Wooten hip connective tissue stretch