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-What can yoga offer to codependents on their healing journey?

-How can yoga help us confront our poor relationship patterns as a consequence of becoming more aware of our bodies?

-What about practicing yoga helps us let go of perfectionism, compare-and-despair, and self-neglect?

Welcome to Episode 112! This week, I sat down with Stephanie Flanders Martin, certified yoga instructor and owner of a virtual yoga studio. Stephanie opens up about codependency in her life and all the hard work she’s done to foster interdependence in her second marriage. We discuss the healing power of yoga for codependents on their healing journeys. Yoga in and of itself is a practice and helps us learn attunement to ourselves, awareness of our physical sensations and emotions, and commitment to practice rather than perfection. Stephanie describes the benefits of breathing, humming, and certain poses to help us get in touch with ourselves. We conclude with ways Stephanie helps her students address imbalance in their lives by focusing on balance in yoga. It’s a must-listen!

More on this episode’s guest:

Stephanie Flanders-Martin in the Founder and Owner of Tree of Life Yoga Studio, a small boutique studio hosting virtual classes, pop ups, and retreats. Stephanie has been in the health and wellness field for the past 7 years, after a 30+ year career in the restaurant industry. She designs and facilitates Corporate Wellness Programs. Stephanie holds her 200 hour yoga certification from Full Circle Yoga and her 500 hour certification with Yoga Medicine. She is a Yoga Medicine Therapeutic Specialist. → FREE Zen in 10. Register to participate for 10 days free ONLINE yoga classes at the studio!

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More deets on the episode:

We begin with hearing Stephanie’s definition of codependency and experiences of it from her own life. She describes how codependents tend to look for approval from and have an unhealthy attachment to someone. She shares about her first marriage and ways she did what her former husband told her–even when she didn’t agree with it.

Stephanie reveals all the work she did after her divorce to avoid history repeating itself and ways she and her second husband have cultivated interdependence. They attend workshops annually, read books, and honor one another’s love language.

We shift gears to focusing on the healing power of yoga. Stephanie educates us on trauma-informed yoga and how she works with her students to offer words, cues, and gentle touch in order to create a collaborative partnership with them. In her classes and her studio, she has strived to have a space where her students can tune into themselves, open themselves up, and become more self-aware through breath/movement.

And how has Stephanie seen codependency show up in the body? We discuss how our chakras may be blocked or tight if we aren’t verbalizing our needs, catering to others, and people-pleasing. Through yoga, individuals struggling with codependency are able to build awareness and knowledge by tuning into their bodies.

Stephanie emphasizes how breathing, chanting, and humming help us get in touch with our vagus nerve, the nerve that cues our “rest and digest” parasympathetic nervous system. She makes an effort to help her students focus on these aspects of yoga in order to forget about pleasing her, comparing themselves, and getting distracted by perfectionism.

We conclude with tips on how to deepen your yoga practice: intention setting, restorative classes, and making sure your teacher resonates with you.

Thanks for coming on Stephanie! And thank you for being here dear listener!
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