Because of New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, my Monday and Tuesday yoga classes were cancelled – but I still taught my Wednesday and my first-Saturday-of-every-month classes this week. Being the first week of the new year, I wanted to incorporate something into my classes to acknowledge and celebrate our collective new beginning. After a lot of reading, and some thought, this is what I chose to do…
At the start of class, everyone received a clipboard, a pen, and a piece of paper that had a large oval in the center, and the words “for 2019” printed underneath the oval.
After a bit of centering and breathwork, I suggested to my yogis that they take a moment to think of their intentions for the new year, and then to formulate each of these intentions into single words. They were then invited to write these one-word intentions on their paper, all around and outside of the oval. After a few moments of writing, I asked them to choose one of the words that they had written – the one that they would like to be their primary intention for 2019 – and to write that one word in large letters inside the oval.
Following this short activity, I shared a Young Living essential oil blend called “Believe” – a beautiful blend of Idaho Blue Spruce, Idaho Balsalm Fir, Frankincense, Coriander, Bergamot, Ylang Ylang, and Geranium. Each student received a drop or two in their left hand, rubbed right hand over left, made a scent tent with their hands, and began to breathe in the oil. I encouraged them to think about the one word-intention that they had written inside the oval on their paper, and to “believe” that this intention would manifest itself in 2019.
From there, we began our asana practice – starting at the head, and working our way down to our feet – stretching and strengthening, and occasionally bringing that one-word intention back into our consciousness.
At the end of our practice, I shared the following words:
“I enter the new year with the understanding that I am making a fresh start. I begin by discarding thought, attitudes, and habits that are not compatible with an excellent life. I let go of whatever caused past discouragement, disappointment, or disagreement. I know that seemingly negative outcomes are desires or goals that are yet to be fulfilled. I am open and receptive to new ideas, activities and relationships.
Each day, I can follow a fresh plan of fulfillment. I act on divine ideas that I receive in moments of prayer and inspiration. These ideas flow through wholesome, positive thoughts. As I use creative thinking to build upon divine ideas, my activities become more dynamic and my abilities are enhanced. Therefore, I enter this new year with optimism, joy and enthusiasm.”