Welcome to Black Yoga Society’s Meet The Community! Every Monday and Thursday, we feature a member sharing their spiritual journey and discussing all their wins and losses along the way. If you’d like to be featured, contact us.
My name Isabelle Annick and I currently live in New York.
I don’t think I ever decided to start my spiritual journey, to be honest. What I can say is that early in childhood, I already had a deep internal world and a lot of awareness. Therefore, I was not the carefree innocent being you can expect at that age. I remember feeling a strong interest in religious and spiritual matters very early on and being attracted to places of worship — regardless of their religious or spiritual affiliation. They felt like home and deeply comforting to me.
“Everything has shifted and been an ongoing processing of unlearning, peeling off, re-learning, opening, and deepening within.”
I faced strong life challenges at an early age, but in appearance, it did not seem to affect me because I was very accomplished in many ways.
My awareness of needing “something” started in my early 20s through a strong sentiment of separation and loneliness. This is when I began to seek what I needed through therapy and yoga. Maybe this is when I intentionally decided to align with whatever was calling me. Everything has shifted and been an ongoing processing of unlearning, peeling off, re-learning, opening, and deepening within.
I think the area where it is most visible is definitely the area of relationships. If one is to truly commit to their personal growth, it requires a strong, individuation from familiarity and comfort of certain relationships, including family ones. It opened me to connections and values that I may not have necessarily chosen should I have decided to lead a more conformist existence.
This commitment led me to become very self-directed, resulting in somewhat unconventional life choices. It also led me to study, practice and be certified in a variety of modalities and travel a lot – something which was core to my upbringing to begin with and certainly got reinforced by this inner quest.
I’ve experienced a gamut of healing experiences: from traditional cognitive therapy to somatic ones through various forms of movements, touch therapies, and a lot of energetic ones. I tend to have a strong affinity both as recipient and practitioner with vibrational healing modalities.
Besides teaching yoga and meditation, I offer transformational experiences through yogic healing, shamanic reiki, gong therapy, sound healing, herbal self-care practices, and therapeutic gemstone energy healing.
Almost always I’ve been the only person of color in the courses I took. The other was to be cognizant of the interpretation of non-Western teachings through an obvious Eurocentric lens, which could be at times limited and stereotypical.
More than challenges, I rather experienced disappointment in the lack of depth in the ways these teachings were dispensed. One flaw of the modern mindfulness and spiritual space, in my opinion, is the lack of cultural knowledge or depth, and possibly the lack of cultural curiosity. With the exception of a couple of long-standing mentors and more recent teachers I have come across, I always had to compensate with my own reading, researching and personal investigative practice. But in a way, it’s also what has led me to be who I am and what I chose to stand for in those spaces.
I define my success in forging my own path and having manifested the resources I needed to access the teachings and teachers that interested me, and to receive the guidance and support I truly needed (not always what I think I want) in most instances.
Also, I’ve always been able to choose where I teach or offer my services. I have been honored to hold healing space for beautiful human beings and it’s always deeply humbling to witness them getting insights, finding their voice or resolution, and taking steps toward the fulfillment of their potential.
In the last two years, I have shifted my focus from offering weekly classes to deeper more transformative workshops weaving yoga, meditation, breath, and sound crafted according to natural seasonal rhythms and astrological alignments. More recently, I led an intimate 6-week healing circle for women of color. It was intentionally not advertised but instead by sister-to-sister invitation. It combined indigenous practices of talking and bearing witness, somatic movement, breathwork, and sound healing. I’m currently working on crafting group wellness experiences for the corporate space.
I’m in the process of working on my social presence but people can inquire about what I do and offer by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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