New Years Reflections and Resolutions

A lot happened in 2017, a lot of change and a lot of learning. Often in reflection we look back with rose colored lenses and say “it wasn’t all that bad” – and that’s because we got through the challenges and came out on the other side. This perspective helps us to carry on, and over-come future challenges. But often we forget the other-side of what propelled our growth all together. All of our experiences lead us to where we are now, and each has it’s own way of giving us the lesson we need to grow stronger, taller, brighter, and lighter. So as we move forward, it’s important to recognize and appreciate both the successes and the failures, the areas of joy and the sorrow, the high-times and the low-times.  And often you will find, that the lows became the catalyst for the highs, that you wouldn’t have seen success without a previous failure, or that the greatest sorrows were followed by your greatest joys.

As I look back on the past year, and the history of Yoga in Bowness so far, I’m happy to say there are MANY highs, and only a few lows (though I’m aware of my rosey lenses here too). So I thought I’d share a few of those with you. Here’s the Highlight & Blooper reel from our past 4 years (and beyond):



-       We’ve grown from having only 40 students in 2013 (at the Irish Cultural Center), to having over 4,500 students attend classes with us to date!

-       We’ve had an amazing team of teachers and staff with over 100 people to-date on it – most of whom have volunteered their time & energy to support this community!

-       We’ve maintained our warm & welcoming atmosphere, and it continues to be one of our student’s favorite things to comment on.

-       Our top-quality teachers continue to be what draws people in & back to classes – and is the #1 thing our students comment on!

-       Our teachers agree that our students are the BEST out of all students they teach, and are the main reason why they love our community the most!  

-       We’ve been able to offer over 150 free or by-donation classes to students since 2014.

-       We’ve fund-raised over $4,000 for local organizations and charities.

-       We’ve participated in the last 5 Bowness Street Festivals, last 4 ‘Run Bowness’, and many other local events engaging with the community that supports us.

-       We’ve donated space to some valuable local organizations for private classes consistently over the past few years.

-       We’ve had over 77 successful workshops since 2014!

-       Over 16 of those events have SOLD OUT (most of them being in the last 2 years)

-       We hosted World-renowned musician & teacher Jai-Jagdeesh for a sold-out 3 day event in 2016!

-       At the end of 2017 we found and moved into our new home on Mainstreet Bowness!



-       At no fault of our own – but still deserves a spot on our blooper reel – we had a major plumbing back-up, in our old building during our Grand Opening weekend in 2014!

-       There’s been a few workshops that we thought would be great, but turned out were a little imperfectly timed, and didn’t run: only 13 since 2014.

-       We once miscommunicated and didn’t have staff on to let 10 pregnant women and our teacher into the studio for class (but it’s only happened ONCE in 4 years!).

-       We booked classes in the park, and then the park became a construction zone part way through the summer (luckily it was a rainy summer).

-       The bar above us in our previous location, had changed their schedule without us knowing, and a few times began playing live music perfectly timed as our classes were settling into meditation or savasana.

-       We once printed over 300 schedules with a few wrong times & mis-information on them.

-       A few teachers (myself included) have had a slip of the tongue during class, resulting in some laughter, embarrassment, and hilarity.

-       We were so excited about our new home, and opening it up to you, that we rushed the move in & will have to re-lay some of the floors.   :(

So even though we’ve had our ups and downs, and things certainly weren’t perfect, we were still able to move forward, carry on, grow from our lessons & continue to move towards our goals because of it! We’d love to hear your thoughts on some of our highlights and bloopers too. Please feel free to comment below & share your memories!

As you look back and reflect, it gives you a more honest perspective to look forward and plan for change and future growth. Which is often the initial inspiration behind New Years Resolutions. Often thought-up in the moment of great intention &  strong ambition, when the reality of our commitments and circumstances come into play, our New goals will often fall to the way-side. This is not news for most people – the most common thread between most people’s new year’s resolutions isn’t that they all wish to be ‘better’ – it’s that most of them don’t last.

So how do you make a new year’s resolution that’s going to stick with you through the year? I found a great little article online from another wellness focused small business, who’s simple approach and tips I think are certain to support a successful-resolution-fulfilling year for you (whether health related or otherwise). Read the full article HERE, or see my cole’s notes below:


1.     Don’t have an “all or nothing” attitude about it. Give yourself some flexibility, and time to grow into your new habit / role.

2.     Preparation meets Inspiration: Don’t depend on the excitement of your new goal to carry you through, prepare appropriately to sustain yourself when things might get a little harder.

3.     Kickstart Healthy Habits: Start small with baby-steps, and implement little things along the way. Don’t overwhelm yourself with trying to go from low-high gear all in one move.

4.     Community vs. Going at it alone: Getting support from like-minded people along the way, helps to carry you through if – or WHEN – tough times come up and old habits creep in. If you’re part of a supportive community, the group effort helps to hold you up.

5.     Small Steps for Sustainability: this ties into the first point of NOT going “all or nothing”, but instead, making small shifts each day to move towards the final goal.

6.     Sh*t happens: Recognize the small wins, not just the side-steps. It’s tempting  to give-up after falling off the horse once, but you would never reach your goal if each tiny bump in the road were viewed as a  huge blockade. So instead of beating yourself up for a small detour, acknowledge it, then look at how far you’ve come so far, and know that you can continue to pursue with more gusto than before. Then jump back on the horse & ride! Hey – look at our change and growth towards our goals, despite the list of detours we took along the way.   ;)

Thanks to Coach Keshava from Restore Human, for the great tips!

I hope this inspires you to reflect & resolve (with a sustainable approach) for a better 2018. And I hope we can continue to be a part of your wellness journey for 2018 & beyond!

Love & Light