I’m currently managing a social enterprise created to employ young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as apprentice painters. We have given 12 young people their start in the industry. This is head, heart and hand work for me. However for the teams of painters that I manage in Brisbane and Sydney it’s mostly simply a job that pays money and is hard graft; and it can be stressful trying to finish jobs to deadline.
Today I took our team of 6 in Brisbane through a yoga breathing exercise. We sat, closed our eyes, and I talked them through conscious breathing. None of them had ever done this before (being mostly ‘tough’ construction workers); but I sensed the energy of the room slow down, deepen. We connected to mind, body, breath. I told them they are valued not just for their labour, but here, they are valued as human beings.
I have recently finished a yoga teacher training course; this exercise we went through today is how I live yoga everyday.