What are you addicted to? How can yoga help?

What are you addicted to?
This is something I’ve been asking myself lately.
Cigarettes? I smoked for more than 12 years but I haven’t now, for 12 years.
Work? That might be a likely candidate. Doing. Being busy. Hmmm.
Alcohol? I can go a day, a week, a month without a drink. Never have tried a half a year, a year …complete abstinence.
Food? Eating? Not eating?

So why do I want to teach yoga for recovery?

The dis-ease of addiction: anything that is used to escape an intolerable perceived reality could lead to or form an addiction.
Anything that is used to mask or subdue our reality.
That opens up a great big can of worms, right?
Alcohol. Drugs. Prescription drugs. Food. Coffee. Email. Facebook. Sex. People.

Who hasn’t been there? Who isn’t there now? If you think it’s not you,  you’re not being real with yourself.

Samskara in yoga means a habit or pattern.

We are all in cycles and patterns as we live on this earth. None of us is immune. NONE OF US.

When we start to bring our attention to our habits or patterns to understand their impact on our overall physical and spiritual well-being we are doing our work – our yoga.

Yoga is the practice of bringing our attention and awareness within in order to connect or yoke our body-mind-spirit.

So, of course yoga can help us recover and re-DIScover our true nature and find contentment there! Seems yoga was MADE for recovery from addictions.

Just B Yoga hosted the Yoga 12-Step Recovery Leadership Intensive training for 21 people with Nikki Myers this weekend.

We explored our own habits, addictions and traumas. We explored addictions in our families and how that impacted our current behaviors. We actively listened without judgment. We formed a circle of confidence and compassion. We explored the science of addiction and the history of 12-Step. We shared. We abided by ground rules. We empathized.

The issues are in our tissues. Asana practice can help heal those tissues and help us understand those issues by sitting with what comes out when we sit with what we perceive as intolerable. Notice. Then notice that you’re noticing, is what Nikki taught us.

Now we’re not talking about a complicated yoga practice. The poses can be simple and slow to yield deep and significant impact.

Our group bonded as sangha digging into the issues in our own tissues.
It was healing and humbling. It got angry and uncomfortable. It was kinda wet and snotty.

We emerged committed to helping create sacred and safe space in our community for continued recovery and relapse prevention. All addictions are welcome in the same circle. We are all the same. We aren’t experts or superior to anyone. We all have stories and traumas and shame and pain. We are willing to share our journey on our paths as a way to help others join a path of well-being. We are willing to listen and hold safe space.

Half of those attending came from all across the country and even Canada. States represented included Florida, Connecticut, Idaho, Texas…ALASKA! They were responding to a need in their own souls and communities in seeking the training.

Y12SR meetings will be coming soon to Lansing – the first in the state of Michigan! We will facilitate the meetings through our non-profit, Free Being Yoga Network. There will likely be others popping up in Okemos or East Lansing as well.

It is NOT a replacement of 12-Step.
It is NOT a rehab program.
It’s an additional tool in the toolbox toward wellness and recovery.

The sessions are half circle meeting and half yoga class. It’s anonymous and safe. It’s accessible to all.

If you are interested in participating or hosting meetings please email contact@freebeingyoganet.org

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