Wellbeing at Oracle: Q&A with yoga instructor Yasmine

By Ellie Gadsby

Do you spend enough time on your physical and mental wellbeing? At Oracle, we understand the important role that self-care plays on how we feel. By making wellbeing a priority, we are happier, more resilient and more productive.

We check in on each other as much as possible and have regular meetings with our line managers, whether that is in person, in the office or over the phone when working from home. We are also actively encouraged to step away from our screens at lunch and head out of the office to stretch our legs. Having a park nearby is the perfect place to relax during our lunch breaks when the weather is warmer.  During the summer, we finish early every other Friday, so that we can make the most of the warm weather. To mark our achievements, we also nominate someone to receive our ‘Jar of Joy’ prize each week, ensuring everyone knows that their hard work is valued.

Recently, we have also been given the opportunity to join in with a company yoga session every Monday evening. These sessions are run by the lovely Yasmine and really help us to unwind and stretch out after sitting at a desk. Although it is sometimes hard to concentrate at the start of the session, by the end we are all so relaxed that we could (and sometimes do) fall asleep! We decided to ask Yasmine a few questions about wellbeing and yoga, and this is what we found out:

What made you decide to take up yoga in the first place?

I took up yoga as my physiotherapist suggested it to me after a neck injury caused by improper movement patterns whilst performing exercises at the gym. It all started as a means to correct my injury and prevent further injury in the future. At the beginning, yoga was just a physical practice to me, one that complemented my other exercise activities. Over time, I realised that yoga was benefiting me both physically and mentally, so it became part of my every day routine and something I really wanted to share with others.

What’s your favourite yoga pose and why?

My favourite yoga pose is Adho Mukha Svanasana – commonly known as Downward Dog. I love it because not only does the whole body stretch sensation feel amazing, but it’s also a pose that is accessible to most people with so many benefits! It’s a reminder every time I get into the pose that yoga doesn’t have to be fancy to be beneficial and in fact it’s the basic postures that we get the most out of.

How important is it to have a balance between working and dedicating time to your physical and mental health?

Dedicating time to our overall health and wellness is the most productive thing we can do! When we are well, we feel good and we do better. The balance is so key because if we spend all our time working without any focus on our wellbeing, we are at risk of ‘burnout’, stress, anxiety, depression, and physical decline. This of course will impact our work and all other aspects of our daily lives. When we focus on our health, we strengthen our self-worth, drive and motivation.

How do you think yoga helps your wellbeing?

Yoga is an all-encompassing practice that can have profound effects on our physical and mental wellbeing. It improves our body’s structure, movement and alignment whilst strengthening our muscles, bones and joints. It teaches us to be in the moment and connect with our ourselves and one of the most powerful practices that helps strengthen our mental health is this – mindfulness.

Apart from yoga, is there anything else that you do to boost your wellbeing?

As well as yoga and keeping active, I do my best to nourish my body with the food that I eat, I prioritise sleep and rest and last but definitely not least, I meditate and journal. Nutrition, sleep, mindfulness and exercise all work together to boost overall wellbeing. They need each other to thrive and we need them to thrive!

 

If you want to find out more about how yoga can help you, check out Yasmine’s Instagram (@yogawithyasmine)  or her website www.wonderfulandwell.com