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How Yoga Has Helped With Anxiety During A Big Life Transition

I’ll be honest with you, it's been tough for me to practice yoga these past two weeks.

I’ve hardly focused on my breath. It’s been difficult for me to slow down and be mindful. I haven’t stopped to set intentions. I haven’t even rolled out my mat.

I’ve been feeling a heaviness surrounding me. No matter how much sleep I get, I still feel sluggish. I wake up with so much discomfort in my body.

I wake up hoping to take some time for any form of yoga but end up allowing other priorities to take over.

I’ve been transitioning into the next big, exciting phase of my life. I’ll be starting my second Disney College Program!

Between packing my whole room up, I’ve been working at my part time job. And in the few moments of free time I find, I’ve chosen to spend it with friends and my love.

Even though working for Disney is my dream and I’ve been planning to move back to Florida for months, it’s still a big change and that comes with stress.

If you know anything about the college program, you know how thrilling it is. I’ll also be living in a brand new building that’s practically a resort. Since my future's so bright and glamorous, I hardly receive any validation from the people I live with about my stress.

I know I don’t need external validation for my feelings to be real, but it’s extremely difficult to navigate vulnerable feelings when there are people actively going out of their way to resist and invalidate me.

I felt so drained and burnt out. I’d been so stagnant for several days that the thought of stepping on my mat was terrifying.

What feelings would pop up? Would my body hurt? Would my mind even be able to calm down?

I told myself I would give myself 30 minutes to set my intentions and connect to my breath while stretching.

I told myself to reclaim my energy, I would clean my sheets, start organizing the clutter in my room, and maybe even dust so I could open up space and freshen up the area.

That didn’t happen. With bags under my eyes, I continued to pack for my move. I shifted my belongings around and arranged them into their respective suitcases.

After about two hours, my hips and low back were screaming at me. If I didn’t stretch soon, I was going to regret it.

I surrendered to what I was feeling, rolled out my mat, and turned on this glorious Yin Yoga practice for hips.

As I rested in Child’s Pose, thoughts about my packing and other priorities began cluttering my mind. It seemed like my thoughts did not want to stop.

As my body slowly began to relax and my hips eased up, my thoughts followed. I started enjoying silence and finding peace in the moment.

I entered what felt like a well-deserved Savasana and immediately after my body cried out to me for sleep. Finally, I was listening to my body and honoring her for what it needed.

I was so refreshed the next morning that I swore I could take over the world. I told myself that I was going to do a Vinyasa practice, finish packing, and do all the chores I said I would do, but didn’t.

That simply didn’t happen. Packing took over my day again until I was completely depleted.

Thankfully, the Yogi in me urged me to step on my mat once again. I listened to my body and did another Yin practice.

I was so proud of myself for tuning back into my body, giving myself some time to decompress, and practicing discipline/Tapas. Given that I had been making up excuses to not practice yoga for two weeks, two days in a row was pretty good.

I’m relieved I jumped back into my practice when I did because as my departure date got closer, the more anxious I got. My sleep was getting even worse and I felt like I had a constant head cold.

Leaning into my yoga practice reminded me to slow down more often, take rest when I knew my body needed it, nourish it the best I could despite my nervous stomach, and finding little pockets of calm throughout my day.

I am also so grateful for my coworkers who understood how stressed I was. They did what they could to keep me calm by listening to me and even pampering me a bit.

Doing yoga doesn’t solve all your problems but it definitely helps. I was able to help control my anxiety instead of letting my anxiety control me.

Personally, when my anxiety is really out of control, my thoughts don’t ever stop and start to think the worst when I feel any sort of physical discomfort and sometimes even pain. But when I slowed down, I remembered some of my favorite anxiety techniques and applied them.

I’m really grateful that I’ve gotten back into the swing of my yoga practice and I’ve been able to apply different limbs to this whole transition as we now head down to Disney.

Sending you love and light,

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