Beth is a Modern Yogi. Someone who is able to take the moment for what it is and turn it into what she needs. A nurturing spirit with a spark of laughter, art, and edge! Follow her journey on Instagram: @bethcooke_flow , see her flow with Lena Dunham on Well+Good, and check out Y7 Studio!
- What’s your personal mantra?
“We are all practicing.” We are all doing the best we with the level of awareness we have in each moment.
- What are some of your daily rituals?
I practice yoga everyday even if that means 10 min of pranayama and stretching. Most days you can catch me upside down a few times as well. Inversions get me high on life.
- How has yoga been a healing process for you?
I truly found yoga 4 years ago when I got sober. I found living life without drugs or alcohol to be quite anxiety inducing at first. Yoga taught me how to breathe deeply again. I also began to notice the more time I spent on my mat the less space I had for negative self-talk, fear and self-doubt.
- When did you realize that yoga was your life path?
I started to realize yoga was my path when I was always hanging around my yoga teachers after class. I used to go to the crunch in union square and practically stalk my yoga teachers. If that was you I’m sorry!!! I was in love and obsessed with all of them. I never thought I could do what they did. But I knew they were helping change my life. If I could ever give that to someone else (swoon) … that would be heavenly.
- Have you seen your yoga practice evolved over the years? How so?
My practice changes daily. What I’ve found to transpire the most over the years on my mat is my acceptance. When I first started up again 4 years ago there were many shapes that frustrated me to tears. I thought I was supposed to be able to do certain poses because I grew up a dancer. But I had also put my body mind and spirit through a war. Acceptance is the key to transformation.
- What does self-love mean to you?
Self-love. Putting yourself first. I’d be lying if I said I had this one on lock. But again, I’m practicing. Starting simply with getting enough rest, drinking enough water, eating foods that give me energy instead of all cake all the time (my favorite.) For me it also means learning when to say no. Taking time for myself to recharge.
- When it comes to life, how do you handle chaos?
RUN! Just kidding. I find a place to get quiet. Slow down my breath. I pray. I meditate. I move my breath. I move my body. I stay connected to grounded friends around me to bounce ideas off of. And yeah, its life, sometimes I freak the fuck out. Then I remind myself of my mantra. We are all practicing.
- How has yoga shaped your perspective on life and yourself?
My perspective on life and myself changes constantly honestly. One second I think I have this whole thing figured out and then a wave comes by to knock me down carry me back out again. Yoga has shown me that we are all the same. And we are all in this life thing together. While we are here we might as well make it a little softer, a little brighter for everyone around us. As best we can. I have moments where I forget this entirely but I try.
- What have you learned from your experience as a yoga instructor?
I’ve learned the yoga never stops. We are always learning and we are never done. Like my mantra, we are all practicing.
- What is the best advice you were ever given?
Best advice I’ve ever been given? “Forget about what it looks like. Tap into what it feels like.” Lindsay Dombroski, Queen.