Sensory notes from last week

My time at the Nia White Belt training involved more consistent stimulation and activity than I’ve experienced in over a year.  My schedule was generally 8 am-5:30 p.m., with an hour and a half break for lunch.

The week involved a lot of sensory stimuli, including movement, touch, and music.  And while I was definitely tired at the end, I definitely felt like it was mostly good stimulation.  I felt fed by the experience, what I was learning, my classmates.

I put in my earplugs twice – once when the music seemed too loud during class, and another time when I felt overstimulated.  I went outside for lunch, and then put in earplugs when I returned so the sounds would be a little quieter.  When we shared how we were after lunch, my three words were:  sleepy, overstimulated, and grounded. I know the last two seem like polar opposites, but it also felt true – and like a victory.   I wrapped a yoga blanket around myself and it helped me feel more contained during the afternoon session.

I felt most overstimulated at the celebration post-graduation at a local restaurant.  There were a lot of people talking and I had to focus to pay attention to one conversation.  I had a moment where I was like, “oh” and closed my eyes for a moment to take away one stimulus.  It was definitely a reminder that these kinds of situations can be challenging for me.

Now, I’m feeling wistful with missing my classmates and savoring the experience.  I’m eager to learn a new routine and cultivate my Nia practice on a deeper level.  I am also craving lots of quiet and alone time, to slow down, to keep stimulation low.  I recognize that it’s a balancing act – finding experiences that feed me, taking time for quiet, and acknowledging – not judging – when I feel overstimulated and drained.
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