Life at Home with your Corner Studio Teachers

Even if it’s just for a few brief seconds, connecting with students before and after class at the studio is something all of our teachers miss. In hopes of bringing a touch of that connection back during this time, we asked our teachers some questions about their lives off the mat.

What’s your favorite thing about teaching yoga from home? 

Sarah: It has been wonderful to connect with Corner Studio yogis every week. I love talking to folks at the end of class and reading the comments. I am very grateful for the community and to the students that show up every week.  

Peter: I’m able to go straight to dinner from Oasis when I have my delivery timed to arrive just after class ends, so it feels like I’m at the studio! But seriously, the check-in process is a lot easier for me now, even if there’s an occasional Internet hiccup. Okay, really, I like working from home, even if the commute is very short for me. I have a space dedicated to my practice which I can now share with more students. That said, my favorite thing is probably seeing cats join in the practice, especially opportunistic lap cats. #pounceonsavasana. 

Mia: Getting to come together with community from my favorite space in the world (and extra long savasanas).

Marca: The connection it provides me to my Corner Studio community. Even though we’re not sharing the same physical space, having a couple minutes before and after class, partially fills the void.

Lisa: Teaching from home is a challenge, just like practicing from home. Oddly enough, that’s what I enjoy about it. It requires me to practice what I preach and use all the tools in my yoga tool box to teach the best class that I can despite distractions (which include my partner and cat) and technological malfunctions.

Jenna: As much as I miss the in-person connection of studio classes, there is a different type of intimacy with virtual teaching.  I feel like I’ve invited all students into my home, and I love that!

Amie: You can’t beat the commute! I didn’t think I would be able to teach a weekly class to the Corner Studio community (that I love so dearly) and now I can! There is no traffic. I also love practicing yoga with my dogs. It’s a little too distracting to teach with them in the room but they often cuddle with me when I take other teacher’s classes.  

With all that’s going on right now, what keeps you grounded?

Sarah: Yoga and meditation practice, for sure. I have been especially enjoying walking meditation if I am having a difficult time sitting still. Connection with my family and friends virtually. Being in nature. 

Peter: Knowing I am very fortunate – there are people who are much worse off than me. 

Mia: Time in the sunshine, connecting with loved ones over text or through Instagram, and making art.

Marca: My dogs keep me grounded and provide a healthy dose of laughter in my life. Many of my students have commented that hearing their snores in savasana has been relaxing. They are completely benefiting from quarantine; constant company, lots of walks, and new interesting table scraps. 

Lisa: Staying present. Focusing on what’s within my control instead of what is not.

Jenna: Long walks, getting outside every day, and extra time with my husband and my wild, happy, newly-one-year-old daughter.

Amie: I honestly don’t know where I would be without my dogs. Going on a walk with them always lifts my spirits! It’s hard not to feel happy when they are so excited. 

Lots of people have been cooking more lately – what’s happening in your kitchen?

Sarah: Before the quarantine, I didn’t have much time to cook so I have just been enjoying cooking in general. Shakshuka with Feta has been a recent discovery. So good!

Peter: My peanut butter cup recipe is top secret – nice try. Also, I hear the reason some students keep their cameras off during class is because they are secretly eating grilled cheese sandwiches. I want to know what cheese you’re using. Pro tip – “butter” the bread with mayonnaise. 

Mia: We’re on a cookie streak and are on our 6th batch!

Marca: Lots of baking, where before I did very little! Cookies, cakes, donuts, fudge….more as an activity than anything else. I never even knew they made baking sheets specifically for donuts (I own 2 now).

Lisa: My kitchen is always pretty lively, but I’ve been baking a lot of sourdough bread now that I have time to consistently feed my starter.

Jenna: For those who eat fish, there are local fisherman selling scallops and haddock directly from their truck in Gloucester.  SO fresh, delicious and inexpensive!

Amie: Ooof! I am no Ina Garten! I did make a strawberry pie (click here for recipe) that was delightful and I can make a pretty good chocolate chip cookie. I am more of a taste tester than a chef but I love to cuddle up and watch “The Great British Baking Show” — a great way to stay positive and inspired.

Stay at Home Fatigue

If you’re reading this, you’re feeling it, burned out from being at home. Desperately in need of a vacation just for a change of scenery, possibly without those you’ve been living in close quarters with for over a month now. You somehow feel both full of energy and drained at the same time. I can empathize, I feel it too.

So what do we do? In our one click, on demand world, where is our quick and easy solution? Unfortunately, there isn’t one. The good news is that you have all the tools to turn a tough situation into one that is more tolerable. Who knows, maybe you can even be grateful for this time.

First things first though – it is completely okay to feel sad, angry, anxious, stressed, or any number of emotions. It’s important to acknowledge how you feel. If we choose to ignore these emotions, they don’t magically disappear. Once you’ve acknowledged how you’re feeling and why, and you want to shift those emotions, you might explore using the below tools.

Be present. Asking yourself when this will be over or whether or not you’ll have to cancel your trip in the Fall isn’t going to make you feel any better. It’s going to create anxiety and stress. What can you do now, in this moment, that will bring you joy. I know so many people who yearned for more time at home, now that you have it, do something that brings satisfaction to your life.

Reframe. There are many things about this situation that are out of our control. Focus less on what you can’t change and more on what you have control over. Can you use this time to be more creative and think outside the box? I’ve seen several people and businesses doing awesome things despite all the difficulties of dealing with the pandemic. How can you reframe your situation?

Put a positive spin on it. Our brains often choose to focus on negativity. Observe your thoughts, when you find yourself caught up in a negative spiral, can you flip the scenario around to find the positive? Avoid assumptions. We often think we know exactly what’s going on with a person or situation. Stick with the facts, unless you heard or saw it firsthand, it’s likely an assumption. 

Stress Less This Year

Smile. Sounds really silly, but it’s backed by science. The next time you’re feeling stressed or frustrated, give smiling a try!

Write it down. To-do lists are a great way to keep track of goals and tasks. They also give your brain a break from juggling all the information. Journaling is another useful tool for stress relief. Clear your mind, write your thoughts down on paper (or whatever you have on hand!).

Rest. Even our phones need to recharge. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep every night. If that’s not an option, make sure you take at least 5 minutes every day to relax your body.

Let it go. We all make mistakes. Learn from them and move on. Whether it’s your mistake or someone else’s, learn to let go and forgive.

Getting back into a routine, returning to your mat

After a summer of travel, beach weather, and outdoor activities, autumn’s arrival might be sending you signals to return to your mat. Whatever the reason may be, if you’re desiring to get back to a routine yoga practice, you’re not alone. Here are a few suggestions to revive your practice:

  1. No excuses – it’s easy to make excuses for not practicing, but the truth is that we can always make time for what truly matters. If getting back on your mat is important to you, devote time to it.
  2. Take a class with a favorite teacher – Our favorite teachers inspire us. Join your favorite teacher for class! You’d be surprised how much motivation can come from being around someone that inspires you.
  3. Hit the refresh button – Change is good! New yoga clothes, new mat, choosing a different spot in class – change up something about your practice to refresh your perspective.

Dreaming Big for the Coming Year

It’s January again – a popular time to set goals and dream big for the coming year. No matter what your aspirations are, here are a few tips to help you accomplish your goals.

Be Honest – set realistic goals. Shooting for the stars is great in theory, but setting goals that you can realistically achieve will keep you motivated. For instance, if you’re an omnivore moving towards a plant-based diet, it might be best to try easing into the diet one or two days a week.

Be Really Specific – if you have a big goal, there are likely many steps you’ll have to take along the way. For example, if your goal is to buy a house you might need to apply for a loan, create a savings plan, determine your spending limit, etc.

Tell Everyone – the more people you share your goals with, the more you’ll feel accountable for achieving them.

Set Deadlines – give yourself deadlines or check in dates to keep track of progress towards your goal.

Have a Backup Plan – things don’t always go as planned, especially for more complicated goals. Don’t risk panicking and throwing all your hard work away, have a Plan B.

Be Kind to Yourself – congratulate yourself for making progress towards your goal. If the path to achievement gets rocky, do what you can in the present moment to reframe your perspective. Stay focused and positive!