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This year has brought a lot of new words into our vocabulary. The one I’m focusing on today is “pivot”. We’ve seen so many businesses transition from what their main form of business was to something brand new.

If you think about it, this time has been a time for a lot of reflection and creative innovation. It has been a very difficult time for so many people, and I don’t want to minimize this at all. It has also been a time of opportunity for so many to reach out and help people in need and to do things to come together more as a supportive community.

When I think about all of the most difficult times in my life that completely flipped my life upside down, I can see that they were often a time of growth and transition. When I was 23 I packed my bags and moved to S. Korea all by myself without really knowing what I was getting in to. It was a huge life changing time for me. I remember waking up in my tiny little apartment wondering what in the world I did because everything was so difficult. I had no idea about the culture, the language, the food…. nothing. I was so young and naïve when moved there. It was the first time that I had traveled internationally and pretty much the first time that I had traveled completely on my own.

In hindsight, I can see now that this was one of the biggest times or growth in my life. Was it easy, definitely not, but I learned a lot about the world, different people and cultures, and maybe most importantly I became more independent and strong in my own beliefs. Since that time, I have struggled at different times and in different ways. I know during my times of struggle it has been difficult to see the transition that I was going through, but I know now that when I am in these times that I will get through it as a stronger individual with new skills and strengths.

This year has been tough for me. The struggles from covid have affected me and my work in many different ways, and I’ll be honest…. at times I let it overcome me. It’s never easy to go through a difficult time and believe in what will be. It is so much easier to sit in fear and anger for things not being the way that we had wished them to be. However, I think we all know in our hearts that this is not the best way to stay.

I believe that feelings are meant to be felt. So, now when I go through difficult times, I make a point to feel all the feels. I make a point to allow myself to go through the transition of grief with or without the hope that things will one day be better. This is not to say that I can completely comprehend things as I’m going through them, but I can acknowledge the pain, the hurt, the fear, and everything that goes a long with it and know that these things are not who I am and won’t be around forever, but that it is my truth in feeling those feels in that moment.

Yoga has taught me so many lessons, and going through these difficult times and trusting in the power of “out there” is maybe one of the biggest. This goes back to the ‘pivot’. When things knock you down and your plans get derailed, it might just mean there is a bigger opportunity that is ready for you. With the studios closing and my shift away from my primary teaching location, I’ve been able to connect with my community more than I did before. The transition to teaching yoga in the park gave me a confidence in the community that I built more than I had before. It gave me the opportunity to connect with my community and feel supported in a way that I never expected. I mean… I always knew I was supported by community, but it is during the difficult times that we need this most and appreciated it even more.

I’ve pivoted to teaching my own classes. I rented a space and am open for business inviting my community in to classes that they love, and it fills my heart. I’ve also expanded to teaching at other studios and am starting to connect with a bigger community in even more ways, and I couldn’t be happier.

If you’d like to join me for a class on Mondays or Wednesdays in SW Calgary for a Flow and Stretch class, you can email me or comment below. If you’d like to join me in studio (or online) in a warm Slow Flow class on Wednesday’s at 4:45pm check out Yoga Nova Studios. If you loved my Yoga Pilates or want to dig deeper in to some Foundations with me on Saturday or Sunday mornings at Savoria Natural Wellness.

Thanks again for all of the love and support.


Nicole Leona

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