Self-care: Is it Important?

Yoga by Paige self-care

A few years back, I found myself at a really low point. You see, depression runs in my family and, it wasn’t the first time I was in despair but this time felt lower than most. I literally felt like I was spiraling out of control just waiting to hit bottom. Words aren’t enough to describe that feeling of seeking your lowest point. I found myself withdrawing, unable to connect with my friends and family, and ultimately like I was more of a burden to the people in my circle. Suffice it to say, my mental health was in a bad way.

I’m eternally grateful for my clinical social worker (whom I met with weekly in the darkest days) and the good people in my life for holding space, sitting in silence, giving up nights and weekends to ensure I made it through another day. In the thick of things, I knew I needed to create healthier habits and cultivate tools that would allow me to not only live but thrive. Insert my journey toward self-love and truly beginning to understand self-care; both of which have become trendy hashtags but I genuinely credit some of these activities as transformative.

Gratitude Journal

One of my close friends and confidants recommended starting a gratitude journal which I initially brushed off as hokey and a waste of time. She encouraged it for weeks until I finally gave in. The goal was to write down three things each night before going to bed, it had to be something different for each entry—no repeats. A small task with a powerful impact. Admittedly, in those initial days, I struggled to find things that I was grateful for so I started small: a bed to sleep in, warm water to shower with, a quiet moment connecting with a friend. Eventually, I began looking for moments of gratitude that I would be able to capture and write down in my journal. I did this nearly every day for months until my sense of gratitude was so overwhelming that it became integrated with my being.

Whats bring you joy?

After recognizing all that I am thankful for, I needed some serious work on my self-love. For too long I walked through life full of self-loathing, reacting to life. I had never taken the time to recognize my worth or to tune inward. I allowed busyness to keep me distracted, as a result, I was utterly disconnected from my inner voice. To begin, I created a list of 31 things that bring me joy: a long hot bath, an afternoon of reading, a pedicure, attending a yoga class (just as s student and not a teacher), a long quiet walk alone around the lake, a meditation cushion, catching a solo chick flick at the movie theater, etc. You get the idea—my list included things to do solely for the sake of enjoying time by myself. Then, each day, I chose one thing to do for myself—for only me. At the end of the month, the connection I made with myself allowed for my intuition to become louder. Between the gratitude practice and the month of dedicated self-love, I found Paige.

Meditation

Meditation was the last layer that I incorporated into my self-care practices. I dabbled with meditation via yoga classes and trainings but never had the discipline to carve out the time regularly. I used (and still do!) the Headspace app for guided meditations, mainly as I was working through the layers of loving myself and shifting perspective. Meditation can be powerful in cultivating the connection with our deepest desires, what we know to be true within our intuition, and a guide to continual growth.

The connection and love affair we have with ourselves is our most powerful. The way we fuel our minds radiates out to our environment and community. So the answer is yes, a resounding absolute YES. Self-care is the utmost importance. If you’re looking to connect, or even re-connect, with yourself consider our upcoming Spring Renewal retreat in April. We’ll be retreating to Joshua Tree to explore our inner most possibility.

With deep love,

Paige

New to Yoga?

Are you new to yoga or interested in getting started with a practice? I’m often asked what’s the best way to get into yoga… and my answer is always the same, read on for my opinion. The beautiful thing about yoga is that all you really need to get started is a yoga mat (my favorite linked here) and your body.

My best suggestion for beginners is to go to a beginning level or Hatha yoga class at your local studio and touch base with your teacher beforehand. By letting the teacher know you’re a beginner, he or she will keep an extra eye on you and most likely provide more thorough cues than usual. I started with a community college class that met once a week back when I was still in college. Then I dabbled with class offerings at my local gym before feeling comfortable enough to go to a “real” studio. Most studios offer an introductory package, two weeks of practice for $20-$40 or even a week free of charge. Take advantage of these opportunities to find a teacher and style that fits your needs.

If that’s too intimidating, Glo.com (formerly Yogaglo) is also a great resource. I believe you can sign up and get one month for free; after that, it’s a mere $18 a month for unlimited class access—the price for one studio drop-in class. This will give you an opportunity to feel comfortable with the names of yoga poses, what they should look like, and you’ll also begin to understand how your body feels in the different shapes. Glo is excellent, too, because you can filter down the level of class 1, 2, or 3 as well as the class duration, and teacher. My favorite teachers include Tiffany Cruikshank, Kathryn Budig, Jason Crandell, and Dice Ida-Klein.

If you’re looking for another online resource, I recently filmed a brief yoga warm-up aimed at yoga beginners to feel comfortable in Sun Salutations, a sequence that most flow or vinyasa yoga classes begin with. This short 8-minute warm-up is great for waking the body in the morning, before a more vigorous practice, prior to more intense movement or after as a cool down post-workout to stay limber.

Yoga can be life-changing. I’d love to hear about how YOU got started with yoga.

Cheers,
Paige

Daily Routine Must-Haves

2019 is officially here, can it be real? I spent the first week of the new year recovering from a pretty gnarly cold that knocked my voice out for four full days. Not the most inspiring start to a new year, but it did afford me plenty of time for reflection and only a little self-wallowing. ;)

My mom has been around for the holiday break which is always so fun. We get to share ideas, stories, dreams, and adventures. We’ll often share our favorite products that have made an impact on our day-to-day lives. You know when you find something so good, you want everyone to know so they can benefit too? I figured you might also want to know!

Apple Airpods

I’m always listening to new music for yoga playlists between commuting for classes. Whether you’re listening to music, podcasts, or audiobooks your media will pause if you take out one bud, no more missed moments. You can change the settings for other functionality as well. I like to double tap my left earbud to skip a song.

As someone who loves to be active, the Airpods have been an absolute game changer. They stay put during workouts! I can even wear these during a home yoga practice whether I’m practicing on my own or using Glo for a led practice with my favorite teachers.

FRÉ Detox Me

This Post-Sweat Clearing Mask has been a skincare godsend. While yoga will always be my first (active) love, high-intensity workouts really make me powerful AND sweaty. You can find me in any number of workout classes or gym workouts throughout the week and this Detox Me face mask has helped my skin so much. I would often get regular breakouts and spots on my face from not cleansing deeply enough. Since I began using this product, gone are those frustrating spots. My skin feels so smooth and maintains a healthy glow. The scrub itself is gentle enough for daily use and smells incredible, a blend of vanilla with citrus. I stash this in my gym bag and bust it out post workout whenever, and wherever. If you use the link above, you can save 15% too. If you prefer, use code at checkout: YBYPAIGE will do the trick as well.

Many of you shared your favorite products with me on the gram which I’m still in testing phase. Please keep your recommendations coming so I can share an updated recap!

Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides

While we’re on the subject of skincare, I began using Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides in August after receiving a free sample while attending Wanderlust (seriously the swag is impressive at their events). I was hearing about collagen left and right and chalked it up to being another fad that would soon fade. I told myself, I’d try it daily for one month to see if I noticed any differences. One month later my skin was glowing. I’ve been pretty lucky and have had decently good skin but have noticed general dullness and a few more fine lines creeping in than I’d care to admit. You guys, this stuff works. Do yourself a favor, buy the tub and try it out for one month.

I prefer adding the collagen to my coffee in the morning, it mixes right in with little to no taste. It’s become part of my routine and strangers have been asking me what I do for my skin. As if you need another reason to try, but what really keeps me coming back is that my muscle recovery has improved, my joints don’t feel quite as achey post workout. I highly recommend to any athlete or workout enthusiast.

I’d love to hear about your daily routine must-haves. Drop yours in the comments below and let me know if you’re planning on trying out any of the products above.

2018: A Look Back

#2018bestnine

#2018bestnine

With the end of 2018 fast approaching, reflecting on the year helps me to anchor in accomplishment and gratitude. It’s been a damn good year with the realization of many goals and dreams. My yoga intentions for 2018 were to spend more time developing a stronger yoga community, to find a home studio, and to create balance between teaching yoga and a full-time career.

Stronger Yoga Community

It was my goal to host events that were more integrated, blending the lines of yoga on and off our mats. My Saturday morning class, hosted by Le Meridien Hotel, is open to anyone and everyone willing to get their buns up early on a Saturday and has been so fun to develop.

We’re officially annual after hosting our second rooftop yoga event at the Oakland Museum of California during one of their Off the Grid nights which was so fun, followed by good food and company.

I was even able to rope in a few extra friends to attend Wanderlust Squaw Valley, continuing to share the joy yoga brings to my life.

We managed to squeeze in a couple #yogaplay days; a practice where we get together simply to play on our mats, without structure or constraint, sessions can last anywhere from one hour to two. Sometimes there are spontaneous dance parties too! Want in on the next #yogaplay date? Drop me a comment below!

Home Studio

In January, I found my hOMe at Ume Yoga nestled in bustling downtown Oakland. The first time I walked into Ume was back in June 2016 for a class called Yoga Church. I was hooked, and my soul knew it was home. It’s been an absolute pleasure getting to know my fellow teachers and students who show up every week, stay inspired, and share their light. Thank you, Universe for bringing me to Ume. My heart feels so full each time I walk through Ume’s welcoming doors. If you’re in the area, you can catch my classes on Mondays and Thursdays @ 7pm.

Create Balance

Creating balance was the hardest intention and still requires a fair amount of discipline to maintain; it might be the most important. The most significant shift in balancing my schedule was to reserve mornings for myself.

In the morning, I don’t check work or personal emails, social media, or take in any news. It used to be that I’d check my phone the first thing upon waking, but I found my mind would kick into overdrive before I’ve even had a chance to check-in with myself and how I feel. The bombardment of information took over, and I would start my day in reaction to the inputs. Now, I wait, I breathe, I listen, I connect. Then and only then, I workout—listening to music or an inspiring podcast like this one or this one.

This morning ritual has become sacred to feeling grounded in my own needs. I now have space to ask and reflect upon the following question:

What will I do to feel the way I want to feel?

Finding Inspiration During the Chaos

Cisco Meraki Holiday Party 2018 | San Francisco City Hall, California

Cisco Meraki Holiday Party 2018 | San Francisco City Hall, California

What a week it’s been! I’m still settling back into real life after our Business of Yoga training with Candace. I’m running on all cylinders and had some massive Yoga by Paige business moves, starting with a website launch and the announcement of my first yoga retreat near Joshua Tree National Park coming up in April 2019—save the date! I have a fun local to San Francisco event coming up in January too, details will be posted soon.

During our Business of Yoga training, Candace led a Law of Attraction meditation that was truly powerful. While sitting in the airport awaiting my flight home, I was lucky enough to find a really great Law of Attraction meditation on Youtube that has helped me to remain inspired and focused during the chaos of the building out Yoga by Paige, teaching my full schedule of yoga classes, and celebrating the holiday season. Each time I listen, a different phrase or mantra stays with me throughout the day. I have endless ideas and cannot wait to have the time to put everything into action. Give the meditation a listen and tell me what you think!

One week later and I’m still buzzing with inspiration. Everything feels so right. I know the Universe is here working with me. I also thank you for being one of the first to share in the dream.

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Welcome!

Behind the scenes photoshoot from YogaByCandace Business of Yoga Retreat

Behind the scenes photoshoot from YogaByCandace Business of Yoga Retreat

Hello yogis!

I attended a Business of Yoga workshop this last weekend with the incredible and wildly successful entrepreneur, Candace of YogaByCandace along with eight other fabulous women.

We spent four days learning the ins and outs of running a successful business as yoga teachers and picking each other’s brains on where we’ve seen success and bouncing around ideas to keep the inspiration flowing. I left the weekend feeling energized and ready to go “whole ass” on all things related to the business side of my yoga hustle.

Most yoga teachers I know are living the grind and we do it because we love being in service to our community and facilitating growth within our students—I know that’s why I keep such a busy schedule on top of a full-time day job.

Along with a whole host of to-dos to bring my yoga business A-game, I needed to seriously upgrade my website and perhaps create a venue to share my thoughts, musings, reviews, and inspiration with all of you in a way that’s slightly more permanent than the usual social media channels. So… here we are, a blog! Yes, another one!

I’m so looking forward to connecting with this Yoga by Paige (YBP) community in another way.

Here’s to further development and deeper connection!

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