What does support look like to you?
Let’s face it, there are moments, days, weeks even when we are in need of support and simply don’t ask. Something gets in our way – pride, fear, avoidance – so we suffer and struggle through on our own, likely prolonging our misery. And then to complicate our misery even more we grumble to ourselves and complain that no one understands, no one cares. Sound familiar?
I know for myself, one of the hardest things in this world for me to do is to ask for help. And yet I still wonder and get frustrated when I feel I am misunderstood. It is a vicious little circle that I create for myself. I start with “Nothing to see here. No, I don’t need help, I am fine, I can manage this all on my own.” And then immediately jump to “Am I invisible? Can’t you see how I am suffering? You must not know me at all if you cannot see I am in need here.” Thus creating the perfect Lose/Lose scenario. No one wins, least of all me.
There IS Comfort Found in Asking for Support
Breaking the CycleI see this cycle repeated often in my yoga classes. As a new teacher I learn more and more each day to listen to the silent language of body cues. Especially in my Restorative Yoga classes where students hold poses for long periods of time. I always state a few times for emphasis that I am their guide, but their body is their teacher, and if a posture doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. And if your body is signaling you that it wants to move, move. And if you feel like you need more props to support you, just signal me and I will bring them to you. Then we begin our practice, and it happens almost every time – I can see someone is uncomfortable and rather than do what is needed to find comfort, they try to struggle through it.
In yoga we always encourage finding the fine line between effort and ease and resting there. Rest is especially emphasized in Restorative Yoga – maximum benefits with minimal effort. So I allow each student the time to find their line before checking in with them. But if I see painful winces, and scrunched up noses, I immediately approach my students to support them in finding the right posture for their needs. Once their needs have been met, whether it is a change in how they are laying, or an extra prop for comfort, they let out a deep breath and relax into the posture. Often it takes persistence on my part for the student to accept the support I am trying to give them.
Even Yogis Have a Hard Time Asking for Help
Taking the First StepThis article was first published at Fibro Haven
Shared at Fibro Friday link up week 88 where you will find lots of other personal stories about Fibromyalgia