FitWell Fusion Coaching

Yoga and Holistic Lifestyle Coaching – The Similarities Might Surprise You

Yoga is an amazing tool that we often incorporate into Holistic Lifestyle Coaching. They possess many similarities, and I will outline some of them in this post. If you prefer to listen to a Podcast – or do both – please consider listening to my appearance as a guest on the “Heartfelt consciousness” podcast, hosted by the wonderful Micaela.

Link to the episode:

Both are mindfulness practices. They both focus on balancing out your body, going beyond what you can see and what you can feel. The physical practice of Yoga can both be calming and energizing. Further, there are philosophies on how to achieve happiness, and also how to acquire your desired lifestyle (nutrition, as part of Ayurveda, being one example).

Both are mindfulness practices. They both focus on balancing out your body, going beyond what you can see and what you can feel. The physical practice of Yoga can both be calming and energizing. Further, there are philosophies on how to achieve happiness, and also how to acquire your desired lifestyle (nutrition, as part of Ayurveda, being one example).

Holistic Lifestyle Coaching, as I learned and teach it, is based on 4 principles of balance for your body and your life in general.

The 4 principles are Doctor Movement, Doctor Diet, Doctor Quiet, and Doctor Happiness.

Let me explain how this correlates with Yoga. Let’s start with Doctor Quiet. Calming practices like Yin practices, Restorative Yoga, and gentle Vinyasa would be considered part of Doctor Quiet. Of course, meditation is a big part of those practices as well. Anything that calms us down, that is Yin, that gives us energy. Those practices calm and tone our nervous system and allow us to be in the rest and digest state, the parasympathetic state.

Now onto the Yang practices. These would be considered part of Doctor Movement, the exercise part of Holistic Lifestyle Coaching. We could use more active Yoga practices like power Yoga, Ashtanga, and strong Vinyasa flows as part of the movement piece. There is a phenomenon in Yoga as well, that if students come exclusively for one type of class, for example just the more calming practices or just the more exciting practices, they’re out of balance.
This principle can be compared and explained with the Rajas and the Tamas. If one is too much in a Tamasic state, meaning they are overly calm and relaxed, essentially they are in a state of being overly Yin.
They could become too slow. Their body is not moving enough, so they need to balance themselves out and bring a little bit of Rajas into their life. They can invite a little bit of energy to move towards balance, which is Sattva.
If someone is too active, too much in a state of Rajas, they may need to invite Tamas, more calmness, more restoring, more working-in into their life to move closer to Sattva.
This is another example where we see the how the principle of balance expresses itself within both Holistic Lifestyle Coaching and Yoga.

From a philosophical standpoint, they also hold similarities. Yoga looks at the body more holistically, and the same goes for Holistic Lifestyle Coaching. Holistic means you are looking into the body as a whole – you are looking at the whole body. Symptoms in your body are not just symptoms but have a deeper root cause. There is more to the body than just the body – it consists of energy and chakras and koshas.
You’re looking at the body emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually. Those are the terms used in Holistic Lifestyle Coaching.

Now, in terms of the diet factor, you could compare Doctor Diet to the aspect of Ayurveda which talks about diet. Yoga can provide you with a guideline on what and how to eat according to your Dosha type (Vata, Pitta, Kapha).

In order to know what body type you are, you are able to take a quiz and use other tools to figure that out. It is very similar to the nutrition part of Holistic Lifestyle Coaching.
In Holistic Lifestyle Coaching, it is based on a metabolic typing approach, where people take into consideration where their ancestors are from and what types of food they used to eat. This can also be determined through a questionnaire, which then gets tested and refined to see if it fits the individual. Ayurveda looks at similar points since it determines which Dosha you are. Each dosha has a specific characteristic that can be balanced with certain foods and also recommends what is preferred for your Dosha type and what could be limited.

Our fourth aspect to balance out and take into consideration is Doctor Happiness.
Those are all things that make you happy. We could look at relationships, hobbies, time for ourselves, learning new skills, and so on. What we really want to achieve is to move to a place of peace and being content.
Yoga calls this stage Samadhi and offers a variety of practices to move towards bliss. Yoga offers us the 8 limbs of Yoga – the art of living – to move towards happiness, our state of bliss. Those 8 stages are the Yamas, Niyamas, Asanas, Pranayama, Prathyahara, Dharana, Dhyana, and in the end Samadhi. This is even more in-depth than the four Doctors, which means one could draw even more from Yoga to guide them through their transformation.

To me personally, it feels as if Holistic Lifestyle Coaching – at least from my coach – was inspired by the ancient practice of Yoga and gave it “a new look”. I know that my coach is very influenced by the practice of Yoga, which I find beautiful. It also gives us room to know that one day one of us might be able to create a system built upon the foundations of Yoga.

In the end, both Holistic Lifestyle Coaching and Yoga are tools to get to the same place, to know our true selves, to know ourselves deeper, and to figure out what we really want to do in this lifetime. To move closer to Samadhi, our bliss state. It gives answers to the questions:

“Who are we, really?”
“What’s our true self?”
“What are we underneath all the social masks?”
“Who do we want to be?”
And of course to many more questions – I would say all of the questions of life.

Both Yoga and Holistic Lifestyle Coaching are a tool in the end, and tools are methods. To quote Ram Dass here: “All methods are traps.”
Now that might sound quite harsh, true, or confusing. Let me give you my consensus on this for you to take or leave.
So you would choose a method. A method to work towards your happiness. You work with that method. Now, it’s important to know that your method might not be everything. It can easily seem as if your method has the answer to everything, and that is a trap in itself (I have been there and thought I could apply a tool to literally every situation.)

Your tools might be a big part of your life. They might be super important to you in your life or at a certain stage of your life.
You can view a method as a walking aid. For somebody who is recovering and needs help walking this is an important method to get back into walking. They need that aid to walk again, to get the confidence and to be okay walking. That is perfectly fine.
However, does that person want to use this walking aid for the rest of their life? They might need to, but they would only be truly free if they could overcome the walking aid. So at some point, they have to get free of that aid and look for other options, and walk on their own, which means evolving. If they keep on walking with that aid, it’s a trap because they are binding themselves to something that limits them in the end. It is keeping them from evolving. It eventually hinders their growth and takes their power away to believe they could actually walk on their own. For the purpose of this example, I’m using the example of someone who CAN physically walk and is temporarily in a situation where they can’t.
This is the same topic both for Yoga and Holistic Lifestyle Coaching.

Use any other practice, whether it be something physical, something spiritual, something emotional, or something mental. Take any practice in life and strive to evolve yourself from it, question it, and be okay knowing that at some point this might not serve you anymore. Or you might have to discover the limitations and then add something else on, change directions a little bit.
It also is really important to not get overly rigid about any practices (I have been there as well!) because literally, any practice on this planet has its faults, shortcomings, and limitations. It also has its good parts, it’s really really good and helpful parts. If it helped you there will be many others that could benefit from it as well.

If you can, be okay with knowing things are temporary. This is the nature of life. It is going to help you a lot to see anything you do in life as a tool, and you can literally draw out what information, what knowledge you need at that moment from it. And once you have the knowledge and information you need, you can move on.

That is why I believe any practitioner, whether you are looking at a Yoga teacher, a life coach, a hypnotherapist, an NLP practitioner, a doctor, a teacher, a trainer, and so on has something unique to share, which we can learn from. Pick your cherries, use the tools that work for you, and enjoy.

“We are all just here to walk each other home.”

Ram Dass

That is what life really is about. Community. Yoga builds community. One love. Universal love.
So as long as our intention is good, as long as we are striving to improve ourselves, and we reflect back on our methods, we are doing the work. We can ask ourselves “Is this working? Am I really doing the best I can at this moment?”
And then we can be okay with letting go of practices, being okay with inviting practices and learning about new teachings.

We might even be able to accept the teaching that opposes us a little. The things that we want to avoid can offer great lessons. Personally, the thing that activates me the most often ends up being where the biggest opportunity for my growth lies. The second I lean into the things or the people that activate me, I experience tremendous growth. That is what, I would say, doing our work means. We are here to aid others in their healing. They are here to aid us in our healing. And as Ram Dass said, we are all just here to walk each other home.

I hope this gave you an overview of how I could see Holistic Lifestyle Coaching as being quite similar to Yoga. Yoga can be everything or anything in life. And you might even notice now how other practices, when they’re holistic, are very similar to Yoga and how you can find Yoga literally everywhere.

Thank you so much for reading. I appreciate any comments or questions from you. Please also feel free to reach out and just get in touch!

Thanks so much.

With L0ve,

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