This month feels like some sort of destiny fulfilled for me. Eight months in the making, the 10-session course “How to Embrace Your Unique Nature” was released on the Insight Timer app two weeks ago!
I'm not sure where that "destined" feeling comes from, but it's clear that sharing this course feels like a duty to me. The concepts within it have altered my perspective forever and I feel like I owe it to you to explain where I am coming from when I teach meditation and yoga. I've been exploring the concepts in this course for half a decade, since undergoing more rigorous studies in India's traditional healing system known as Ayurveda. On the surface, you might see me as a calm and pleasant yoga/meditation teacher... but underneath this exterior, I can assure you that I am also an in-the-closet perfectionist and a worry wart!
The subtext of this course is that you are not broken. You do not need to be fixed. You are as captivating as the moon on a clear night and as awe-inspiring as the endless waves of the ocean. The beauty that you find in nature is no different than your own. If you take nothing else away from the next few words about these teachings, take away this simple truth and run with it.
I've created this course not to "make you better," but as the title suggests, to encourage full acceptance of you as an intelligently-designed part of the species. You have unique strengths and vulnerabilities that will follow you throughout your life. The course involves 10 recorded sessions, each from 8-12 minutes long, in which you get to study these qualities and traits by studying nature. Through several guided meditations, we explore the five natural energies that combine to create your unique nature. Once you have this framework, then we learn the natural strengths and vulnerabilities of each of theses energies. The course concludes by describing qualities that bring balance to your energy when you are feeling off.
I've always believed that it is best to lead by example, so, I'll offer a personal story on the idea of how the study of nature and Ayurveda helped me to further embrace my unique nature (I'm not claiming a complete embrace just yet, but I've made some good progress!) One fairly common sign of my energy feeling “off” in my life is absent-mindedness. At its least harmful, this pattern used to make me feel like a space-cadet and at its worst, like I fundamentally lacked intelligence and was destined for failure in life. Forgetting appointments and misplacing my wallet during already stressful periods of my life is a pattern for me. Until I studied the concepts in this course, the most frequent ways I related to this pattern were firstly, to berate myself for doing something so stupid AGAIN, and secondly to hide my mistakes and feel ashamed.
I designed this course for others who feel like they have failed to outgrow patterns and qualities that they’ve owned for years and dislike. These aspects could relate to body image, common mental patterns, or emotions they find themselves meeting again and again in their lives. The concepts in this course have softened my internal reactions of shame and self-criticism, as well as, my external reactions of blame and criticism towards those around me.
I still forget the basic truth that I am whole. I forget all the time. When I forget, I turn to nature to remind me. She has not failed me once.
I look forward to sharing more teachings with you in the months to come, whether its through the course or just through my regular classes and meditations. I've attached Lesson 1 from the course below so you might determine if the teachings are something that you'd benefit from. If the lesson speaks to you, the rest of the course can be purchased and listened to through the Insight Timer app. It's $4.99 to "rent" the course or $19.99 to buy the course. I will receive a fair portion of the fees, which will go directly towards my monthly income for things like groceries, my mortgage, and doggie dental chews for my pup Daisy. As a full-time yoga/meditation teacher, this is significant! I am so thankful to Insight Timer for this opportunity.
Another bonus about this course: if you have questions as you listen, you can ask them in the course classroom and I will respond to them in both text and audio form. This means we have a real virtual classroom so that we can keep learning together no matter how far apart we live!
Hannah has been a student of yoga and meditation since 2003 and a practitioner of Ayurveda since 2013. She spent a decade teaching yoga classes and yoga teacher trainings throughout the metro-DC area. In August of 2019, she left full-time teaching to pursue a two-year Masters degree in Speech Language Pathology at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She intends to combine yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda into speech therapy sessions with those struggling to share their voices. While she does not currently teach regular classes, you can study with her online through Insight Timer.