When Dr. Tequilla Hill applied to be a presenter at SYF, it was something that had been on her bucket list. She’s excited to bring a couple of different kinds of experiences to the event: somatic meditation and gentle yoga that’s centered around the practice of self-compassion, followed by journaling. Her style is all about bringing folks back into themselves, creating a sense of home within. As a licensed psychotherapist, she believes that yoga is a practice in reconnection — with ourselves, our bodies, and with what keeps us well. “That’s one of the number one things I see with people who have mental health issues,” she says, “being disconnected with what keeps you well. Who are you, and what does your body need to feel optimized?”

What is Disconnection, and How Do We Get There?

“All of us have many intersections,” says Tequilla, “we play many roles.” This means that we show up in life in several different capacities for different people. Oftentimes, our body itself isn’t a center of those roles, and we neglect to prioritize what we need mentally and physically to fulfill those roles for others. This leads us to feel disconnected from our authentic best selves. We end up performing, rather than showing up in a meaningful, connected way.

“It’s hard to show up for grace and compassion if you are disconnected from yourself,” says Tequilla. “Grace and compassion have to be embodied within the self first.” Practices like journaling and somatic meditation can help us come back into the body, and reconnect with that sense of authenticity. 

“There’s something very powerful about writing,” she says, though she understands that not everyone is a journaler. “That’s why I’m doing guided journaling, and giving prompts that are in alignment with the flow so that folks can have a conversation with themselves — a compassionate, graceful conversation with themself about their experience and something to gently hold themselves accountable.” 

Inspired Action as a Means to Connection

Accountability is another part of the equation in the doctor’s teaching; she believes that accountability and grace go hand-in-hand. Journaling is a conduit that allows for participants to take away something that is meaningful, that they can tangibly implement in their everyday lives. But it’s important not to allow accountability to get too far into the realm of pressure, she says. According to Tequilla, it’s only with the softness of self-compassion that accountability helps us evolve, grow, and move into something different. “I’m about inspired action, not pressured action,” she says.

Similar to the concept of not only seeking therapy when things are in crisis, “you do not have to start something when it’s perfect,” she says. “The present is magical because it helps us create a future. We can pull our wisdom and our lessons from the past, and transmit that energy into power,” she says. That’s what inspired action is all about. And it’s a practice — it can be easy to be distracted and forget the path. Practice makes mastery, says Tequilla, and showing up as your best and most connected self is no different. 

She recognizes that as a teacher facilitating this experience, that practice extends to herself as well as her students. First and foremost, she says, she will show up with grace for herself, without the pressure to perform. This will then extend that level of grace “so that people can have whatever experience they want to have with me, as long as they’re present with me and give themselves the freedom to allow whatever comes up,” she says. 

Experience this deep and gentle work with Dr. Tequilla Hill in person this June! Tickets on sale now: https://bit.ly/SYF22Tix

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