I moved from New York to Los Angeles in 2014 to pursue an interest in wellness after a decade working on Wall Street. I initially approached yoga pragmatically: it was a break from my strenuous work and fitness schedule. I quickly discovered the psychological and emotional benefits of the practice are equally important as strength, flexibility, and agility cultivated in the gym. As I continued my journey through teacher training, I saw the critical role that yoga plays in keeping my mind focused, my spirit calm, and my body healthy. Whether I’m preparing for meditation, cultivating body awareness for strength training, or recovering from an injury, yoga has become a central component of my self-care routine.
The best advice I received from a mentor was to simply teach my practice. There are so many styles of yoga, and within each of those styles every teacher brings something unique to the practice. Rather than emulate others, I simply share the tools and techniques I’ve used to stay healthy, happy, and live with ease.
I lead classes that prioritize linking movement with breath above all else, because the mind-body connection is reinforced through sustained attention on the breath. To protect the body from injury and care for any areas that may need extra attention, I focus on proper alignment in each pose. With careful attention to form, my students are are encouraged to find and safely explore their edge. I believe music can support the physical practice and help students drop in to the present moment. My playlists feature diverse genres and musical styles to create a dynamic, engaging, meditative, and enjoyable space for each student to progress along their individual journey.
In parallel with teaching, my journey as a student continues with meditation. After discovering the power of Lovingkindness meditation, I turned my attention to learn how to share my latest passion with the community. I’m currently working towards certification as a mindfulness meditation teacher with Jack Kornfeld and Tara Brach.
All of my classes begin with breath awareness and meditation, which I think of as “cleaning up before the maid comes,” and close with a few minutes of Lovingkindness practice. I also lead small group meditations, and create custom podcasts for private yoga and meditation clients.
I am excited to share my practice with others, and create space to release the stress, anxiety, and fear created by our hectic lives. I continue to learn from my mentors and students, and I’m wildly grateful for the community created by yoga.
May we all be safe, healthy, happy, and live with ease. Om shanti.
Follow CJ on Instagram @carljordanharvey for updates on public classes, workshops, and private instruction.
Find out more at www.instagram.com/carljordanharvey