Review 2021: From Forbidden Thoughts to Hormone Balance
Writing my Review 2021 was painful in the first place. So many things I could NOT realise during this year.
- Travel restrictions were imprevisible. At a point I forbid myself any thoughts containing the words yoga retreat or Thailand. (I’ve been living there for 10 years, I really miss Chiang Mai, the food and the people).
- Facebook and its boss lost my sympathy (the little they used to have) after unveiling Meta. Also, it’s getting more and more tough (or rather expensive) to maintain visibility. Which is existential for online yoga classes.
- Google introduced new rules: the loading speed must be under 5 seconds or you’re lost in the cyber-abysse. My home page was around 10 seconds.
As a result, I did not grow my business during a few months. Paused social media. Instead, I invested time with old and new friends (really many new ones this year), my family, biked around Bodensee, gave 2 months free online classes, taught yoga in Dresden, made a visionboard, and slowly a new way of addressing my customers emerged. Read here how and where it took me.
View back on the goals set for this year
- Yoga Retreats: The retreat over Easter on Fuerteventura was a short term project and came true with beautiful souls. All retreats later on in the year did not happen, travel restrictions to Slovenia and Thailand demotivated travellers and finally also myself.
- Live Online Classes: Yes, they continued over the whole year, Yoga for your Back, with steady participation.
- Outfit 50+: I found a couple of brands providing decent yoga outfits corresponding to my criteria for ladies over 50. Still limited choice.
- Bali and Thailand: No, didn’t do it till there. Travel restrictions. (Fuerteventura, Croatia, Bodensee, Dresden, Ticino instead)
- Simplicity was the motto I had set for 2021. The intention was in my mind with every decision I had to take. Yes, it made my life lighter. Namely saying no. Giving less.
The year was imprevisible for everyone. Steps had to be taken carefully, with short term visiblity. They took me to wonderful places and souls, from where new projects arose and came true.
Fuerteventura Retreat despite all
Spending the winter with sunshine and blue sky. A PCR-test was sufficient to disembark on the edge of Fuerteventura’s volcanoes in January 2021. We were only few to dare this journey – even though taking a flight was presenting less risk to get infected with covid19 than shopping back home. The vaccinations just started and travelling was considered inappropriate by many. I met several persons on Fuerteventura, who would not have dared to tell back home in Germany that they had travelled abroad. It was a really strange time.
The more we enjoyed the pristine landscapes, the beauty of the endless Cofete Beach. It came very naturally that I organised a yoga retreat. It was like inviting friends to come over for a visit. Despite corona. A new wave was taking off in the weeks preceding the Easter-retreat. Two women were brave enough and did the trip! They didn’t regret their yoga retreat on Fuerteventura. Melanie, Federica, Vicky, Elvira, David, you will for ever be in my mind. Mindful walks, Agnihotra and mantras, homemade limoncello, sunset picnic, walks in the volcanoes and dunes and of course yoga.
Strangers are friends you don’t know yet
7am I walked down to the bus station, on my way to rent a car for the yoga retreat. You take bus number 1, they told me. But the people who told me, they’ve got a car and bus number 1 continued its way without considering the stop or even less me. Hitchhiking was the only option. Who would be brave enough to give me a lift? Despite social distancing being inculcated in our brains.
It was Maike, she took her dad to the airport, we had the same road. A week later, the cook for the yoga retreat had to leave the island. A desparate search started and Maike unveiled being the best ever cook and host! And now friend.
The world is made of people, not things
Eva picked me up in Slovenia. We never met before, we just had the same goal: the yoga teacher retreat in Makarska, Croatia. 600 km and 3 days to share. I made her walk more than she used to. She made me meditate more than I used to.
And finally we jumped in the sea and dissolved in the yoga group of teachers. From gentle and healing practise to acrobatic inversion poses, all was covered in this retreat. I dared for the first time to conduct a class in German: I liked it! And the participants as well 😏
We came closer with Nitya and she invited me to spend August in Dresden and replace her during her holidays in her studio Golden Yoga. I said… YES!
Claudia prepared my Müesli when I had my online classes during breakfast time. Thank you for this! And yes, I will surely come to replace you some time at your B & B, which you bought by now in the Azores.
On the research of my Why
Summer is not high season for online yoga. I wanted to keep touch with “my ladies” anyway. And also keep up the online practise for myself. I created Yoga for Flexibility, a shorter practise 3 times a week live online, for free in July and August.
Why am I doing this? I want to help busy women to take action for their body, to feel hapy, and to relax their mind. Their smile at the end of the class is rewarding more than any money could be.
Growing my audience through Facbook ads got more and more arduous. Also, I didn’t want to give more money to this company with paid ads.
I searched for a new way to speak to my “ideal client”, ladies over fifty wanting to take action for their body and mind.
The new channel was found: Pinterest. It addresses ladies and I have enough content to feed it with learnings and inspirations.
The wording was soon found as well: hormone yoga for menopause. I had heard often enough “oh, you’re in menopause” with kind of passionate voice. Yes I’m in menopause, and I am happy about it! Yoga surely helped me to feel balanced. So I digged further and discovered hormone yoga as teached by Dinah Rodrigues. The results on hormone balance are astonishing.
How my digital identity changed in 2021
It was time to change the company’s logo Paths to Yoga to a more modern and confident look.
With the motto simplicity still in mind, the posts got sober, the colours away from the dark red towards its complement, dark green.
The Home page followed the same logic towards sober, however my pictures are full of colours, this will never change, they’re taken from my life.
Investig in myself: Hormone Yoga
I first digged the basics: What causes menopause symptoms and what helps to find relief.
From there I studied the book and videos Hormon Yoga by Dinah Rodrigues, detailing the technique she has developed. It consists of dynamic yoga poses, breathing exercises and visualisations, activating the estrogen production and also relieving stress. I wrote an easy to understand article What is hormone yoga?
For the practise I integrated the poses and breathing techniques in my current online classess. I finally also found a live training and am a soon to be certified teacher of Hormone Yoga Therapy! Certification by Shakti Simone Lehner, Yoga Vidya in Speyer, Germany.
The first course Yoga for Menopause starts in January 2022 !
This also means the end of Yoga for your Back. Some of my existing clients will continue with the new program and are looking forward to it. Others can’t, as hormone yoga has counterindications like overactive thyroid, serious asthma issues, and hormone related diseases like breast cancer.
My 3 favourite blog posts 2021
How to make your own short yoga class. Following my 2021-motto “Simplicity”. 10 minutes yoga, 5 poses with 2 minutes each. You can download the instructions for free.
How does breathing work? By mastering your breath you also are master of your emotions, you can boost your energy and hormon production.
What is hormone yoga? Which are the mechanisms stimulating the production of female hormones?
My year 2021 in numbers
1 Yoga Retreat, 4 Launches of Live Online Courses, 5 countries where I lived a month or more, 10 minutes is the shortest ever yoga class I created
17 blog posts (10 in 2020)
360 followers Instagram (250 in 2020)
630 followers on Facebook (500 in 2020)
160’000 monthly views, 19 followers on Pinterest (from zero)
The numbers reflect my strategy away from Facebook, towards writing in my blog and sharing with Pinterest.
The moderate increase with Facebook and Instagram also reflect a break-time with social media while I was reflecting on the new program and how to talk about it.
What else was up in 2021?
Summer on the shores of Bodensee, Switzerland
Franzi and Die Wolfsfrau
Thai pavillon Lausanne
- Yoga for Menopause: it will be much more than just yoga classes. It is motivation, daily life tips, happiness, relaxation and… Actually I should call the program Happy Menopause!
- Meeting up with the online participants: Yes ladies, I would truly like to meet you offline for a few days and will work on it!
- Networking to find new sparring partners, women who want to help women over 50 to feel good and live life at its fullest.
- Yoga retreat on Azores and Yoga festival on Madeira in July 2022
- Nice yoga outfits 50+ is still a topic…
- My motto for 2022 is: Speak Up!