Her Sadhana: Constanza Rios

Her Sadhana: Constanza Rios

1 As a woman, a mother and a yoga practitioner, tell me what do you find the most important teaching you have discovered from this practice and what would you share to those who are on this path?

I think the most important thing I have learned is acceptance and detachment , both in life and in the practice itself. Its not easy sometimes to let go of the expectations you have of different situations in life, but for me the key has been working on the acceptance of the things you can’t change.

Thats why the practice has been one very useful tool in life and especially in parenthood. To have the space to be completely present on your mat with your breath gives you a lot of perspective and the capacity to identify  daily patterns that otherwise you are not aware of. It allows you to be present  enjoying the little moments during daily life that many times you don’t even realize.

And regarding to the practice itself I think this acceptance and detachment comes from the fact that when  you are a mother of a toddler  many times you have to let go of the expectations you have about many things, like how your practice is going to be, in terms of timing, how long you have for it, how you feel your body  after giving birth, etc.  In my case it was after 2 years of giving birth that I felt comfortable with my practice in the way it was before. You learn to be grateful  to stand on the mat every day, breathing , being present , enjoying that space and accepting the things just the way they are.

2 What is feminism to you? How do you feel women can support each other?

For me feminism is the true believe that man and women have the same rights and duties in every aspect of the daily life. And it is harder than it sounds because we have many  subconscious beliefs  that there are duties for man and duties for women,  and at the same time realizing that everyone has their own strenghts and  weaknesses and be ok with that too.

I think the most important way to support each other is not judging and empowering other women. We can be very judgmental about other women, so lets try to stop that and be supportive instead of being critic.

3 In ashtanga practice, how do you feel we can keep the community strong and supportive for one another?

I think its a little bit like I said before, but I really believe that we should stop being so judgmental and stop having such strong opinions about everything. And also I think its important to connect every day with the real intention of the practice. Ask yourself why do you stand on your mat every day and surrender to it.

4 With this practice we are constantly challenging ourselves both mind and body. This requires a lot of self discipline, focus and consistency in our daily routine. In this moments we are opening ourselves up, we are vulnerable and processing whatever emotions that rises. What would be your advice in these situations? What did you find helpful to you?

Being gentle with yourself and just being open to anything that may arise, and embrace it with an open heart.

Realizing that the practice is a tool towards the path of self-knowledge, a path that begins through a process of connection and understanding of your body.

5 In this modern world we are surrounded by distractions, whether its the constant stream of negative news, social media and the perfectly manufactured image of how to liveness life, our appearance and body shaming. It has the power to knock us off balance. How do we nourish ourselves? How do we find acceptance?

I think that through a regular practice your mind start to calm down and you start to pay attention to the things that are really important in life.

For me the acceptance comes when you consciously  choose the way you want to live your live, asking yourself what do you really need to live a happy life: and then you realize you don’t need all the things you thought you did, and so you can start changing your life in that direction.

This self-knowledge you start developing with the practice also reflects on everything you want to bring into your life such as basic as food,  or people/enviorment  you want to be surrounded by.

Also I think its important to try not to take media so seriously , its not real.

6 Who are the women that inspire you, who are the women that you admire?

Every woman that is choosing the way she wants to live her life is inspiring to me. And even more the ones that can combine being a present mother, having a daily practice and  having a job they are really passionet about. For me its all about balance.

7 What are your daily rituals and routines that you feel ground you?

I like to have my morning coffee in silence before my daughter wakes up,  I live by the countryside, so I really enjoy that times I have while driving my car by myself through the woods listening to good music ,and of course my practice.

8 What makes you feel safe and secure?

Being surrounded by my loved ones, connect with nature in some way and my daily practice.

9 Which element of nature do you feel most connected to?

The sea. I’ve lived by the coast all my life and is something that I couldn’t change.

10 Our energy is always shifting in our monthly practice, as female practitioners when we receive our ladies holiday, whether its a seasonal change or when we travel to different climates. How can we find a balance and a grounding when we feel these changes happen?

I think the most important is to listen to your body. When you have been practicing for a while you really start knowing how every change affects your body and for me you should adjust your practice to it and not push it, because its not necessary, there is no place to get to, its really about breathing and surrender to the present moment.

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