The Lounge Q+A: Nora Jeanne Welsh, Yoga Instructor

Interview with Nora Jeanne Welsh

Nora Jeanne Welsh has been a Yoga Instructor and Energy Practitioner for over 30 years. Listen to her wisdom about Covid-19, a career pivot to Coaching and what is really important in life. Namaste.

How has COVID-19 impacted you?

I just completed my first teacher training, and right in the middle of my teacher training was when COVID-19 shut down my studio. So we had to switch to virtual from being in person. I have a hot yoga studio. People come to the room for the heat, for the guidance to be in a group environment. So to have to switch to virtual was like the last thing we ever expected to happen. It’s just not what you expect in the hot yoga industry. We don’t just teach Yoga, but we also have other hot exercise classes and things now. So, it affects everything, it’s the whole, me, my industry and well-being with Yoga.


Did you pivot in your career?

It’s sort of death. Right. But every death is a new rebirth. It’s an entirely new way of looking at my whole business and what I want to do. And really for the last few years, I’ve been working on transitioning into more coaching work because I’ve been evolving myself. I got into that line of work because I knew there was another element that I wanted to bring into my yoga teacher training. So, I’m in that space of reinventing myself, and everybody’s on their own personal hero’s journey. What is your soul calling you to do? And it can be a little scary. You’ve got your comfort zone of what’s going on over here versus where you want to go, but it’s the unknown territory.


You follow your heart, and you’re going to be in the right place at the right time. We need to learn that more than anything else because we are all unique individual expressions of God. And we’re here with a purpose, and we need to be following that purpose, without even knowing what it is.

Why Yoga?

I’ve been in energy work for a very long time, longer than Yoga. We’re talking 30 plus years. I’m 56, and I honestly have never experienced anything where I’ve seen people energetically shift their vibration and move energy out of their space as dramatically as from Yoga class. With a big group of people you’ve got everybody working the same posture, the same time there you match the energy that’s going on around you. Our body, our energetic field, will be expansive and open. We will be healthy. We will be happy. We’ll be healthy mentally and spiritually and emotionally. So to me there’s no, no more powerful way to begin healing your body. You’ve got to align body-mind and the spirit to truly be happy and feel fulfilled in your life honoring spirit. Because for so many people, they’ve just been doing what they were told they should do, following the path laid out for them by their parents or by society or by teachers. And then they wake up to realize, well, here I am, how did I get here? And right now I’m miserable and where do I go next? There’s always fear and fear will always be on our path. 


Anytime we’re stepping into new territory, into the unknown, we’re going to hit fear. It’s just a message that you’re at the edge of the bar. You’re at the border of the life that you’ve known, but what you want is always on the other side of it now, life-threatening fear is a different story. But, for the most part, we have to learn that we can’t stay where we’re comfortable. Spirit wants to grow. Spirit wants to evolve and go. I think right now more than any other time in your life, especially if your job has disappeared, your livelihood has disappeared right now. Don’t look at practical, think of it like this, is where I think I’m going to, who knows what the future will hold for us. You follow your heart and you’re going to be in the right place at the right time. We need to learn that more than anything else because we are all unique individual expressions of God. And we’re here with a purpose and we need to be following that purpose without even knowing what it is.


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Where do you think this is all going?

To find ourselves to get back out of the head and into our heart where our truth lies. We will find that space of peace and compassion and patience and understanding and have a grace about us in our interactions with other people. 


Could Yoga be the answer during these uncertain times?

I think with everything that’s happening, Yoga could be part of the answer. Especially in a time of pandemic and disease, it is good for you. It’s a good idea to do these breathing exercises. It’s a good idea to do these stretching and cleansing exercises to keep your body in good shape, boost your immune system, keep your mind centered when people are having such a hard time. Anything we can do to promote Yoga right now, I think it is. It’s the right choice. I certainly believe in it.


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