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Julie Denton

Australian yoga teacher

S1 Ep03

Julie Denton

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Julie Denton is a creator of a different kind, having worked in the fitness industry since her teens and more recently as a yoga teacher.

A mother of 3 adult children from Mount Gambier SA, Julie talks about how society's view of the mother changes as we age, the unique perspective she has now her children have moved out of home, and we finish the podcast with a beautiful Metta Karuna mediation.

**This episode contains discussion around an eating disorder**

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Podcast - instagram / website

Music used by permission in this episode from Alemjo

When chatting to my guests I greatly appreciate their openness and honestly in sharing their stories. If at any stage their information is found to be incorrect, the podcast bears no responsibility for my guests' inaccuracies.

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Podcast transcript at the bottom of the page

Thank you so much for tuning in to this episode of The Art of Being A Mum Podcast. I'm beyond honoured that you're here and would be grateful if you could take 2 minutes to leave me a 5-star review in iTunes or wherever you are listening. It really helps! This way together we can inspire, connect and bring in to the light even more stories from creative mums. Want to connect? Take a screenshot of this episode and share it on Instagram tagging me in with @art_of_being_a_mum_podcast

I can't wait to connect. And remember if you or somebody you know would like to be a guest on the podcast, get in touch! I love meeting and chatting to mammas from all creative backgrounds, from all around the world!


Thank you!


Alison acknowledges this Land of the Berrin (Mount Gambier) Region as the Traditional Lands of the Bungandidj People and acknowledge these First Nations people as the custodians of the Region.


Welcome to the Art of Being a mum, the podcast where we hear from mothers who are artists and creators sharing their joys and issues around trying to be a mother and continue to make art. Regular topics include mum guilt, identity, the day to day juggle mental health, and how children manifest in their art. My name is Alison Newman. I'm a singer songwriter, and a mum of two boys from regional South Australia. I have a passion for mental wellness, and a background in early childhood education. You can find links to my guests, and topics they discuss in the show notes, along with music played a link to follow the podcast on Instagram, and how to get in touch. All music used on the podcast is done so with permission. The art of being a mom acknowledges the bone tech people as the traditional custodians of the land and water which this podcast is recorded on and pays respects to the relationship the traditional owners have with the land and water, as well as acknowledging past present and emerging elders. My guest today is not your run of the mill artist creative, or the first thing that may spring to mind when you think of a creator. Typically, your mind goes to painters, writers, dancers and more like that Today's guest has a long history of creating in another way. And I invited her on to share one of the many ways that mothers are being creative today. My guest, Julie Denton from Matt Gambia, South Australia has many years experience in the fitness industry, as a business owner and more recently as a yoga teacher. Work. Julie, it's great to have you here.

Thank you, Alison. It's great to be here. Yeah.

And my first face to face interview too, which is very exciting. Obviously, I know you quite well, and I've known you for a while. But would you like to share a bit about yourself how it maybe what you've been up to, over the years involved in fitness, maybe how you got into it, what you've been up to, with the yoga, that kind of thing?

Sure. When I was 18 and working in my first job. One of my co workers dragged me along to what was an aerobics class back then, at the local was just the squash center. And I was hooked. I loved it. And until that point in my life had been quite lazy. I was the girl that wags sports day at school. But I just loved it. I loved the music and the movement and the way it was all put together and I guess I love the creativity of it. So when I've literally been going for maybe a month or two this aerobics class went out bought all the gear, how will you no idea? Like Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. So the days where your oily attire over your leggings and it had a G string and the leg warmers and I had the hair that went with everything was float? Look, my kids look at the photos and go Oh, Mom, have you still got some of that stuff? Because that's heavy. I have it doesn't smell very good. Like anybody um, the the woman who was taking the classes a month in the woman that was taking the classes was leaving town. And she literally said to me, Julia, would you like to take over and I said, you know, you didn't need qualifications in these days. And I said, Oh, yeah, that'd be great. And gee whiz, I, I was really thrown into it. And I remember making my first little mixtape of all I could say, took my little boombox and press play, and away we went. And it was dreadful. It was horrible to everybody loved it. And I loved it. And you know, there was nothing to compare it to. In, you know, small country town at the squash center, it was, you know, we were having a hoot. So, from there, you know, I definitely went on to become qualified and more experienced. And eventually, it led me into personal training. I opened my own personal training studio as a business. And then around about three years ago, now I left the fitness industry and opened my own yoga studio. I've been teaching yoga for about 11 or 12 years, but thought it was time to morph into something new and yoga was definitely my passion. So had you

always had that sort of feeling of it? And I'm jumping right ahead here to something I'll probably ask you later. But the the spirituality that comes with yoga, was that always something you had already? That come later? Or how did you come to

that? Yeah. It's funny that you asked that because I was raised as a Catholic. I went to a Catholic Primary School. So I guess that religious spirituality was there. And when by the time I had, you know, I was well into my 40s and I did my yoga teacher training, and had sort of left religion You like by then I sort of, I guess become became a bit disillusioned with it all and was perhaps looking for that spirituality again. And that's what led me to yoga. And I know, yoga facilitated a lot of change in my personal life at that stage that I really needed. I guess it was my next level of growth. And in the yoga teacher training, even though yoga is definitely not a religion, there was so the spiritual concepts took me right back to being at a Catholic Primary School, you know, that, you know, just the underlying current, I guess of love and compassion and kindness. So yeah, it was it was, I guess, my next step in my spiritual growth, and I think we're all we are I know, we're all spiritual beings. It's just some of us perhaps, don't realize it or don't want to acknowledge

perhaps in a bit of denial,

doesn't you know, embarrassed because it's a misunderstood concept. It's, you know, it is connected to some people connected to religion, but you can definitely be spiritual or religious. Absolutely.

So, tell me about your children, Julie and your family?

Yeah, um, I have a husband, Andrew have three adult children, Brittany, Tara and Liam 2927, and 22. So, I guess, from the perspective of motherhood, I'm in the, I'm in the advanced stages, I guess I've got I've got the wonderful gift of hindsight. So when I sort of had a look at the content we'd be discussing today, I've felt really blessed in that, you know, I can see it from all angles, having, you know, the pre pre kids life and then the during kids, and now almost the post kids in some ways. You've lived it all I have. Yes. So. So how do

kids fit in with that? Obviously, the fitness industry and you're quite mobile, and you're moving a lot. How did that all fit in pregnancy? Well,

oh, gee whiz. Well, with Brittany, my oldest I was when I was sick with all three of them for over half of the pregnancy, particularly with my first with Bret. So that was a huge steep curve, I had to sort of set aside the more high energy classes and I ended up moving into aqua aerobics teaching in the pool. Loved it. And I think what happened is I evolved into a definitely evolved into a better fitness instructor through it, because I perhaps appeal to a different demographic as well. Also have more empathy and more compassion for what other people are going through rather than just oh, look at me, I'm fit, you know, and I've got a G string. Suddenly, I was dealing with real people and real issues and mothers that can't do star dance because things happen when your mother. Absolutely. So it was, yeah, it was what needed to happen. Bring me into the real world. It was tough. You don't always get sleep when you've got a baby and Brittany just didn't sleep for the first five years of her life. So I was off and running on empty. It was it was a tough job. Even though it was so rewarding and really a super job for a new mom, because there's often a crash or a childcare involved at the gym. So I was lucky I had that support. Also could work my own hours. So we're working around when Andrew was home, unable to be home with the kids.

So you touched on the tiring, so obviously your body was tired, but mentally How did you go then creating the classes? How did how did you approach that? I suppose if you were feeling a bit, not yourself, and perhaps didn't have as much time?

Yeah, pre. I'll talk about pre my pre Les Mills days because before I became a Les Mills instructor, all of my classes were created by me. So the music and the choreography. Everything Yeah, usually knew who my audience and my class were going to be so I could tailor it to them. So it's probably the beginning of my personal training career in some ways. And I probably sort of prided myself on every class was layered with things we'd already visited or practiced, but then there was a new element And you'll never be. Yeah, exactly. So there was this continuation, there was a sense of familiarity from previous classes, but also a sense of adventure, and we're going somewhere and we're improving. Well, that went out the window when you baby because it's like, you have to use that tape again. And that that choreography because I just couldn't, I just couldn't, I couldn't, you know, find the time to think about it, let alone practice it, and you didn't have the time or the energy. So bit of treading water there for a year or so. But most people, you know, understood that and they were in the trenches with me, because a lot of them were new mums as well. And through that came great friendships a

lot of support. Yeah, exactly. Which is so important. Even just someone to understand who can empathize is just, you know, can make the world of difference.

Yeah, that's right. That's right.

So before you set out on your having children adventure, did you sort of think about how your fitness life would change? Or did you sort of think, like, did you have people around you maybe that role model power to make it work in the fitness industry? Or just No, no,

not at all. I was the first in my friendship group to have children. So honestly, our when I had bread, I'd never changed, or maybe even seen a nappy bean change and change one. And I rang the buzzer, and asked the nurses stitch, show me how to change the first nappy. And I had no qualms with that, because I really did not know what I was doing. Gee whiz, that that floors me right now. Go jokes about jumping into the deep end. So no, I didn't consider it, I probably the changes to my physical body would have been probably my number one concern. And, you know, I feel probably a lot of us did the same thing here in that it's focused on the pregnancy. And you don't focus so much on the actual motherhood side of things. And that goes for a lot longer than the pregnancy, actually, when you look back at it. Same with weddings and marriages, you know, the wedding, and then y'all hang on a minute, I'm gonna be married to this guy for hours. And so. So, yeah, I didn't I think the physical changes to my body were what sort of engulf me at that time. And having come from a background of having an eating disorder when I was in my late teens, and interestingly, getting into fitness is what brought me out of that hole. Because I started to respect my body more. So it was, yeah, I sort of been through that journey. And then suddenly, it was all going to change again. Yeah, yeah. So yeah, that was confronting for me. And that was probably my focus. And then once I learned how to change a nappy and feed the baby, like, sort of with all three kids, I went back to my work at the gym. Fairly quickly, I had other jobs on the side that I'd hadn't any lead from, but I all I've always worked in the fitness industry is at any given time, other than perhaps three or four weeks after giving birth. I retired when I had lamb my third and then they dragged me back.

Keep your way, you know? So your children are late. You've just brought up laying? Yes. just reminded me. So your children spending a lot of time around the gym. It's rubbed off on all of you. Well, yeah, all of them. Yeah, it really

has. It's funny because I tell the story Liam's first full sentence was we will we will rock you because because at this stage, I was teaching those meals classes and one of them was body pump. And of course learning choreography is a big part of it. music So wherever we went in a car Sorry kid. You know, the music was playing and bless him. I think he was you know, probably was old enough to string a sentence. Obviously, not very old. He was in his car seeing the back of the car when I pulled up and I heard this you know, right at the right time with the chorus, but I tend to motor off so that the music went off and there was still this little from the back behind me. We will we will walk you it really was at the same time as i Oh, my goodness, what have I done? So yeah, and I also my girls would play aerobics instructors, step instructors, and they would, they'd go around so we go to our friend's house and with my friend Louise also in the industry. My daughter's and her daughter would be moving on girls running their own little circuit class, really so my creativity rubbed off on name as well. And since then, my oldest daughter works in, in media bit for the Melbourne Storm Rugby League clubs. So, in sport, you know, she's she's, she's connected to sport and goes to the gym, loves, loves her fitness. My middle daughter Tara is a school teacher and also a yoga teacher. She went away to Bali a few years ago and became qualified as a yoga teacher. And then Liam is currently works in a gym in Adelaide, and he's a bodybuilder so yeah,

he's he's gotten pretty good too.

Oh, he's gone great guns. Yeah. Yeah, he's I don't know how he does it. Yeah, it's

you obviously feel very proud

of him. Yeah, super proud of all my kids. And I feel that, you know, dragging them along to the gym, and I never once pushed it on them. I certainly let them eat, like normal children. I wasn't, you know, pushy with their food or, you know, their, their exercise in any way. I just modeled what I would hope for them to absorb. And they have

Yeah, that's fantastic. I love that. So let's chat about the fantastic word that we get thrown at us all the time that this mum guilt. Well, how do you feel about that? Julie?

Well, I guess I touched on it a little bit a moment ago. My kids did get brought up in the gym. But I was incredibly lucky that I could take them to work with me. And that they could see me I guess achieving something. And being a mum, is my greatest ever achievement, let's let's not get that wrong. I feel that mum guilt is perhaps a label or a clump that we're all invited into. Once we become a mum, and it's expected of us and it's I don't think it's it's something that's unique to any of us where we all feel it. So therefore, is it a thing? You know, it's, you know, tree falls in the forest? Does anyone hear it? Is it a thing? Is it something? Is it just a label, it's I don't think it's an emotion, I don't think it's a feeling I just think it's a thing. And studies have shown that guilt doesn't necessarily reform your future behavior. And I thought about that, and I because I knew that this was one of you your topics. And I thought if I really, really had felt that guilty, when I've stopped doing what I was doing, deep down, I knew that what I was doing was giving me purpose and lighting me up from within. And you know that old cliche making me a better mother. Deep down, I know that whenever things whenever I had a right to feel guilty whenever it really was affecting my children, I changed, I let go of it, I moved away from it, I let it go every single time. So and I mean every you know to say that you've got mum guilt, everybody experiences guilt differently as well. And for me, the feeling of guilt is kind of like looking forward to some sort of future resentment. I know I'm gonna feel bad one day that I missed out on that first smile or the first step or whatever. I that might not happen. And be I'm going to I'm going to go with my yoga and meditation roots here. We can only live in the here in the now. So when I was with the kids, I tried as much as possible as possible to be with my kids. And when I wasn't with them, I tried to do the best job that I was doing with the support that I had. And I think I did and I guess as I said earlier I've got the the luxury now of sitting here with three grown adult children looking back going it all turned out okay. Yeah, maybe if you interview them it might be I don't think so. No, no, I think what we what we do worry and have these feelings and challenges in the here and now. We just got to stay in the here and now. Do the best we can. Do

you think a lot of that comes from society's expectations or how you perceive yourself being judged by others.

Definitely. I think it's expected that we will feel guilty will have mommy guilt RDMS them and oh you know how do you go Being away from them all day. And, you know, what's it like when you get home today, you know, and it's there is this expectation that that's how you're going to feel. So we feel it and it's like, you know, I think you maybe feel it, but Don't wallow in it. Just go, okay, everyone's feeling the same way I am. So just do the best I can and really be with your family when you're with them. And when you're not with them know that that's part of their journey to where if we've created this beautiful, amazing human, and we are meeting their, their needs as far as food, shelter, love. That's actually all they really need. As long as you're meeting those, the guilts really a wasted feeling.

I've said that so well. Did you? Did you find that your that you needed to have something for yourself? Was it important for you to maintain that? Yes. Your sense of identity as Julie? Yes. Not just Julie mum?

Yes, not Julie mom, not Julie wife, not Julie daughter, you know, it's interesting with the mom guilt thing, you move on into my stage of life. And now I have parent guilt. And for all the bad things I've ever said to my mum and dad, the way I judge them when they were bringing me up for not spending enough time with them now that, you know, my mum passed on in March and you know, the time that I didn't spend with her or couldn't spend with her or, you know? Yeah, I think I think we beat ourselves up too much. We can only be in the moment that we're in.

That's wise words. So, you've mentioned you yoga, just February flee, I want to sort of bring that in. Even though you weren't necessarily practicing a lot of ego, you're when you had your children. You were doing your fitness and you came into yoga, or 1211 12. Zero, yeah. Did you find then being a mother, and this whole connection to Mother Earth and other concepts in exploring yoga, that you found a really deep connection that you could understand, or feel those concepts strongly because you're a mother,

everything has evolved since becoming a mother. And speaking of Mommy get to do my yoga teacher training, I had to go, I had to go and live in Boston for a month. And I had incredible support to be able to do that. But I nearly came home after the first week, I was in tears every night, it was so hard. And it wasn't even really mommy guilt. It was I just missed them. But again, the thing that kept me there was that, you know, they I think Liam was only about 10. And the girls are a little older, sort of in high school. And I could see that me being away was enriching their relationship with their dad. And seeing him as part of their, their care is not that wasn't always just gonna be me and didn't always have to be me and their grandparents as well. So when I came back from that, I think all of our relationships changed a bit. We all appreciated each other a whole lot more. When I became a mum, say in the fitness industry, I definitely had a greater awareness and appreciation for the female body and started to research more about that aspect, you know, the hormonal hormonal fluctuations as an example, on a woman that might be training, you know, in the gym, or, you know, running or, you know, participating in sport. So that came into my personal training that came into my, my field of vision. Suddenly, yeah, and then of course, as you head towards menopause, that's now also coming in. And then of course, with yoga. Yeah, when you become a yoga teacher, you realize, you really realize this connection to all beings. You you also realize a connection to think something that's greater than yourself. And realize you have this responsibility of passing down your wisdom. And I'm going to talk a bit about perhaps, hear the, the maid and the mother and the crone and the cranes a horrible word. I'm gonna get creative and

come up with a high priestess. Oh, yeah.

Because I'm a crane. And I want to be called a chrome. Thanks very much. Yeah. So the maiden is, you know, the years when as a female, you're a child or adolescent. You're going through puberty. You're laying the foundation for your the future. You're You're growing and developing physically, spiritually, emotionally, mentally. And then you move into that creative time when you're the mother, where you you're nurturing, and you're, you're providing the shelter, the food, the life sustaining elements to either your children or your family or your pets, whatever it might be, that's your stage in life. And then you move through that into menopause and beyond. And unfortunately, as in Western society, unlike perhaps a the ancient societies in India, where yoga originated, where the the elders are revered, for their wisdom and their guidance, where in our society, we're kind of cast aside we're not cool. We're not Instagram worthy, where, you know, yeah, that was, you know, back in your day, that doesn't count anymore. And yeah, it doesn't. You know what, I'm so glad that I had my kids when I did, because I think we got it easier. But I'm in that stage now where my job I see it is to provide some wisdom and guidance and a shining mite. So that, I guess that's why I came into yoga, because I felt that there was no more moving on girl

for the locker room,

there was so much more in me than that. And what was the next thing so? Yoga was that that awakening within me?

I really miss it. I'm like, in a hiatus at the moment, I'm calling it my chrysalis. I might have been alone, perhaps I was having that come out as a moth. But Kevin? Yeah, my studio, I had to unfortunately, close because of COVID. And then I've developed type one diabetes. So I, you know, divine timing, because I would have I was really, really ill. And it would have been a real struggle to run a yoga studio. So I figured, okay, I've been almost shoved into this cocoon. And um, I was I was fighting that for a while. But then we know what happens inside cocoons. Amazing things. So I'm just going to settle in here for a while. A little bit longer yet. Yep. Build up my strength a little more. And don't worry. There's there's things happening. If there's ideas, and I'm being so creative, right now, probably more creative than I've ever been. It's just that it's all in my mind.

The mind is ready. And the body's saying I haven't your wings aren't quite ready yet. That's right. Yeah.

So let's talk about then the creativity involved in when you you organizing your yoga classes and the thought and so I've always admired and to tell people that Julie has this beautiful, big, it's a double like a full big book. And she sets it out in front of every class. And when I realized what it was, I used to get a bit sneaky and have a look, because I'll always like to bring up the front. Oh, excellent at doing that posting. And it's all color coded, which is like, it's beautiful. And so much thought and effort and passion goes into that. So if you wouldn't mind divulging some of your secrets of how you come up with your classroom.

In some ways, that's my favorite part. And that's the creativity. You know, I can't sit here and say that someone's got that hanging on a wall somewhere or that someone came to, you know, see my show, but I guess they did in some ways. And I've often joked that I'm, I'm my, if I could give myself a title, it's facilitator of change. That's what I've always helped

creating bedding to

create create some change in people whether it was through sit ups and burpees or, or yoga practice or meditation. And my favorite part always has been when I think about it, and thank you for making me think about it. Allison, has been creating what I'm about to present. And I guess when I think deeper about it, everything I've done, whether it's that aerobics class in the leotard or now my yoga, it's almost a performance. I that I've planned and choreographed and researched and scripted. You know, back in my aerobics days or the Les Mills days, you spending an hour on stage, smiling, pretending something doesn't hurt when it's killing you inside. is doing a good job of stringing people along for the ride if you

and no matter what happened that morning if the kids will run like we need them breakfast or you throw him in the car or car break down whatever it literally is, it's a performance you need on your happy face.

And pretty much everyone in the class was creating that same sense as well in that you know, their kids might have been the ones that wouldn't eat their breakfast but that's okay because right now they're in the kids club and I'm having an hour to my set Yeah, so and then yeah with my yoga book, if you want to call it that the volume of my my lesson plans are go with a theme and I attach my theme to whatever's happening in nature. I'm very much connected to the natural world love love the ocean love the moon love the sun, love the seasons love a forest love a mountain. So I'll work out what's going on maybe astronomically or with the moon cycle or with the season you know, maybe an equinox or a solstice or whatever is going on. Or maybe it's a current world event. I remember I had to teach a body balanced class on the day that we all woke up to 911 has possibly been taken but people still turned up for it because they needed something. And that's what tells me that spirituality is so such an integral part of us so yeah, that's that's where I start and then sometimes the colors are a code sometimes they're just pretty colors to be honest. And just changing textures over but sometimes they are a COVID or I might be working with shockers or with a season or or just my favorite colors so yeah, from that that foundation of where I'm coming from then research okay what you know, I know the basic structure of a yoga class I mean learn the very basics and fundamentals through my yoga teacher training. So research okay, what physically do we need in our bodies to perhaps deal with this time or settle any negative things that might arise from say a full moon or or enhance things you know, that we might want to bring to the surface and deal with or shine light on? And then from there, you know, working out okay, how does one pose fit with another? Am I is there is it a balanced class physically? What am I then, you know, what am I going to say? How am I going to present this? beginnings, middles endings, you know, is there a meditation that could go with this? Is there breathwork? What breathwork can go with is each all of my classes will have those elements. It's not just oh, moving on, girl. Yeah, it's definitely this, you know, it's the whole shebang. Yoga should always be breathing, movement, mindfulness. When I owned my own studio, I had the luxury of being able to look at who was booked into that class, and then maybe working out any modifications I might need to offer for people or perhaps just, again, tailoring it along to whoever I I knew was going to be in the class.

Did you find that your how you were feeling came out in like, if you feel like you need? Yeah,

yeah. Yeah. And you know, so many times, and I've said it to yoga teachers, when I've been to their class, people will say, Oh, how did you know that was exactly what I needed.

And I you've seen I've said

it's because, you know, we're all connected together. Yeah, you know, often, I would have, I've probably admitted in class many times, this ain't for me, this is for you. This is for me. I know you don't want to expose but I do. Or I need this. And so you know, it's tongue in cheek, but yeah, we, we, you know, if I'm feeling the effect of, let's say, the autumn equinox, where we're about to shift into winter, where, you know, letting go of those warm balmy days and you know, the joy of summer and from smart meters like and we're, you know, physically we're shifting, it's getting colder. We're feeling we're starting to eat stodgy foods and it's just like, oh, here we go again. And, you know, we're all feeling the same. So no matter what I present, whether I think it's, you know, for me or them, it's for all of us. Yeah,

yeah. Yeah. And I just want to touch on your, your name of your yoga studio, one lifestyle, one yoga and lifestyle. That is important to you to embody that. It's not just the poses, the shapes you make, it's an You take it away from the mat and put it into your life integrated into your life. That's something you're passionate about,

ah, so much. So, I mean, I think because I came, because of that journey I've just spoken about I came from, well look at me, I'm fed to, Hey, sit down, be humble, you know, there's more to it than running around like a crazy person, you realize, you do realize that when you've once you've had children, that's for sure. There's more people in the world than just you. And everything you do, has an effect on other beings. And if we want to focus on the lifestyle, part of it, so one yoga and lifestyle, I wanted to include the word lifestyle, because Yoga is a lifestyle, it's, you know, it's not that people think, Oh, it's a religion, it's a cult, it's just, it's a form of exercise. It's none of those things. It's a lifestyle. It was, you know, founded 1000s of years ago. And it's still around. So it's not a fad. It's not, it's still very relevant, more and more so. And what we do on the mat, the lessons we learn about our physical body to start with, and then as we evolve about mental, spiritual, emotional bodies, we can take into our everyday life. And it's really as as as a yoga practitioner. It's important that we do that, because then we make the world a better place. And that just sounds so Walt Disney, but honestly, that's what it's all about. It's about being the best person we can. So that everybody around us,

and if you get if you get that many people trying to be the best, and do the best nicest things, you know, the the I don't know what the remarks are. Yeah, the ripple effect. Yeah. Yeah.

It's really important to me that people come to yoga. It's there. There's, that's a whole sentence, it's important that people come to yoga force. Yeah. And when they do consistently, they will realize exactly what I've just said that they might come for the stretch, they might come because they're tired. They might come because they can't sleep. They might come because they've got a pain in the back. And if they keep coming, they'll eventually look back and go, Well, I'm coming for a whole different reason. Now. I'm coming for that story about Goddess Kali. I'm, I'm coming because I need to slow down and breathe deeper. I'm coming because my mind is so full. I need to just be still and silent.

And like you said the people that came to that body balance class on that night of 911 Like just needing comfort, I suppose. And community connection in a really positive way. Yeah.

And they probably need to needed to do it. In a space that felt safe. A yoga class always feels safe. Yeah, and they needed Yeah, they they needed perhaps. That mothering.

Yeah, absolutely. Is there anything else you'd love to share to leave, it's important to you that we might not have mentioned?

Yeah, I think apart from like my work, if you want to call it that, I've never felt like I've worked. I've been so blessed with it all over the years and had great support, so that I could always do what I've always done. And looking back, I'd like to think I'm a good example of a mum that knew what was best for her knew what was best for your kids and let go of any guilt or expectation and just did it when it felt right. And that it can all turn out well in the end. Moving away from that, though, the way other ways that we can be creative because, you know, there's there's a lot of pressure on us now. And you know, because of social media as well, we're always expected to achieve you know, and to show what we've been doing with our time heaven forbid that we might just sit around and not do anything. Yeah. And you know, the only thing we did today might have been mopped the floor that's not good enough, you know,

well, if you didn't post it on Instagram, it didn't really happen.

Exactly. So you know, I sort of again if this coming on this podcast has been great for me because you made me reflect back on how did it change when I do you become a mother and I was at home or and I just got into baking and cooking and the kids would do that with me and and craft was big on craft as in craft groups. And I was like, you know, I was managing a big craft group at one stage. I didn't get any craft done. As usual was like I was never as fit as I could be because I was I was at the front like yelling and everybody. Well, there was not getting any craft done because I was organizing for everybody. But it was it was great. I It's creating a crop group. And yeah, so you know, yeah, I've got quilts. And honestly, if there hadn't been Instagram back, then every day, my house would have had different decor because I had, I just was rotating the rooms all the time. I just loved being home and doing that. So, you know, that's if that's how you're being creative. That's how you're being creative. And you know, I think we're all creative. Oh, I totally agree. You know, we we've all got art and music and performance inside of us. And you've really got to acknowledge that no matter how grand it is, or how, you know, mop the floor and sing the song. With you and you created something. Exactly.

Yeah. I didn't want to ask too. How is it different now? Your creativity, and obviously the, the ways you can do it and how you do it. You don't have any kids living at home now. So that must be a different sort of vibe and feel at home.

Yeah, I mean, also, because I'm not regularly teaching at the moment. I'm sort of doing a few pop up classes here and there. So yeah, everything really has changed. But yeah, now if I've got a class to plan, I, I'm sorry, not organized. I procrastinate to the last minute because you don't have to be and quite often, what will happen is like Tara being a schoolteacher, she'll come home for the holidays. This isn't like, Oh, hey, my glasses have been caught out with my pants down. So you tend to get a little bit laps at AZ cool, I think. I think you're at your peak of organizational powers when you have kids at home. And yeah, also, you know, like little things like if I'm trying to make a new playlist or something I have, I've had to learn how to do it. Just get the kids to help me ring him up. Brother Yeah, so it's definitely changed.

Yeah, yep. We're very, very lucky today on the podcast. Julie's gonna lead us to a meditation. And it's one of my favorites, actually is my complete favorite. So over to you, Julie. Thanks. So

today's meditation is metta Karuna. And this literally means a loving kindness meditation. So I will begin by finding a comfortable position and this is whatever is comfortable for you. So you can be seated you can lie down. I recommend that you make yourself warm. So find perhaps something to place over your lap. Make sure you've got socks on or some long sleeves and as you find yourself comfortable, close down your eyes. Remembering that in meditation, all we really need to do is just to be present to just stay alert and aware.

Just listening to my voice being in the here and now the meta Karuna meditation I'm doing today begins with shine, showing love kindness and compassion to the self. So as is the Buddhist tradition, we will send our love or kindness and compassion to ourselves first.

So I'm going to recite a small mantra and what you need to do is listen and then repeat the words silently to yourself lying as you are, visualize yourself, smiling, happy, peaceful and free. And as you visualize yourself smiling, say to yourself, may I be happy? May I be peaceful? May I be free of all suffering? Next, we will visualize before us somebody that we love unconditionally, who loves us in return This can be the first person you think of because I'm sure there are many people and very people, perhaps pets that you love so just the first person or pet that comes to mind visualize them before you smiling back and send your loving thoughts to this person may you be happy May you be peaceful may you be free of all suffering now we'll bring to mind somebody neutral somebody that you know and acquaintance, somebody that you don't have any strong feelings towards. So this might be somebody that serves you in a shop might be somebody that you see on television, it might be a sporting hero, somebody that you don't really know but you you see them often and you have neutral feelings for them. Visualize this person smiling, happy then send this person your love and your kindness and your compassion May you be happy May you be peaceful may be free of all suffering and now, for a challenge we visualize somebody who challenges us it might be somebody who you've had a disagreement with it might be somebody that just rubs you up the wrong way pushes your buttons if this is too painful for you, that's okay perhaps just return to visualizing yourself and sending yourself the love and the kindness and the compassion. But if you can visualizing this person who challenges you and see them happy and relaxed and smiling and smile at them in return and send them your metric arena

May you be happy really peaceful. May you be free of all suffering and finally as vast as it is, visualize the whole world all beings the entire universe before you all beings deserve to be happy and peaceful and free

So visualizing all beings we send out our meta Karina May all beings be happy May all beings be peaceful May all beings be free. Son, the Shang, Asian baby keeping your eyes closed, just becoming aware of your surroundings again. If you're lying on the floor, just roll over to your right side body and curl up there for a moment. And then taking your time whenever you're ready. Use your hands to brace yourself back up and take a seat so that we're all seated. Just pause for a moment eyes remaining closed and just noticing the effects of our meditation may you be happy May you be peaceful may you be free of all suffering

thank you so much for coming. Enjoy. It's been an absolute pleasure and sharing your thoughts and experience because we That's thanks, Alison. If you or someone you know would like to be a guest on the podcast, please get in touch with us via the link in the show notes. Thanks for tuning in. I'll catch you again next week for another chat with an artistic man

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