: Rhythm / Devotion : is a series of interviews intended to illuminate the connection to ritual & rhythm in our daily lives. This series explores the intimacy of routine, the magic of the ordinary, & how these small acts of devotion set the stage for larger workings in the world ~
What is your name & where are you in the world?
I’ve been joking a lot recently that if I had an astro-cartographer look at my chart, they’d probably tell me I belong in a screened porch surrounded by trees on a crisp fall day -- I'm excited this will be a reality very soon (maybe by the time this comes out!). So I'm already claiming it as home.
How do you define yourself & your work?
She/her - cat mom - movement enthusiast & highly sensitive social butterfly (Gemini sun, Pisces moon, Cancer rising).
I spend my days sharing yoga, and love that I get to teach others what I’ve learned about mindful movement with people who want to feel better inside their bodies. My classes can be described as slow, grounding, intuitive, sometimes a little sweaty and probably have some sneaky core stuff.
Will you walk us through what a day in your life looks like? Begin with how you greet the morning & guide us until you close off the day in the eve ~
I take my mornings pretty slow and make sure I do things that ground me. Usually that’s a little quiet time and a bit of movement. Nothing crazy. Just whatever feels good. Before anything can be done, I tend to our 3 cats, who make sure I never sleep too late. Then, I pour a cup of coffee, set my timer, and have a little sit. Currently, I’m in the midst of an online training to sharpen a few tools in my box, so there’s some lectures and classes to take which reminds me of what “busy” feels like.
If I have a class to teach or film, I’ll go ahead and get everything set up for that and probably play with my cats a little bit. Maybe prepare food for dinner later if i’m feeling domestic. Sometimes I'll go for a walk or call a friend for a little socializing.
These certainly aren’t the wildest years of my life, though I’m enjoying the slower days. They vary between practicing, teaching, and administrative work, and I enjoy that each day I get a little of this and little of that. I’m honestly surprised at the ease with which I've accepted being at home so much... Maybe I'm an introvert now?? Highly unlikely :)
My husband gets home from work in the evenings and we spend some time catching up over dinner and relaxing before bed. I love evening rituals - even something seemingly insignificant like closing all the blinds and turning out the lights on the way to bed, kneel in gratitude, crawl into bed, kiss goodnight, and turn out the bedside light. Little moments make me feel peaceful.
You are an intuitive-alignment guide & yoga teacher ~ how do you prepare yourself &/or your space to enter into this practice?
I try not to overcomplicate preparation. I do my practice (moving, breathing, learning, and discovering) and then I write out the base sequence for each class. The energy of the students is what makes the flow come alive, so I’ve found its best for me to keep the planning simple. Before class begins, I like to light a candle to remind myself that it’s not about me, but about what I can help students learn about themselves.
What do you do/not do if you are feeling stuck around your work?
Rest. Listen. Move. Repeat. Resting is the hardest part for me, though I'm getting better with it the more I practice. When inspiration is lacking, I find it helpful to try a new (to me) style of movement. It helps me come back to the basics in my own practice with a beginner’s-mind.
Do you have a movement practice?
Yes, though it’s not always yoga-ish — i try to move at least a little bit for myself every day. A lot of the time, this just means I'm turning on some 90s R&B and dancing around my house, singing to my cats. This is honestly when I feel most connected to my body — strong, mobile, and free. I’ve always believed this connection is the root of authentic teaching and have a lot of gratitude for the yoga school I had the privilege of studying with, which did their best to instill respect for its deep roots while allowing the movement to evolve as a practice of deep self-knowing.
What does structure mean to you, or what is your philosophy around ritual/routine?
I can’t speak for everyone but, for me, structure has pretty much everything to do with freedom... For a very long time, my life lacked boundaries and discipline. I often felt as though I was floating nowhere and would never land, I was completely untethered. These days, no matter what lens I share my story through, I've found that when I honor boundaries (my own or others), so much more seems possible. When I ground myself in rituals and routine, my world tends to grow brighter and more expansive.
What are you listening to, reading, or watching these days?
I’ve been really into shuffling through my whole iTunes library lately. I’ve felt stagnant with music for a while and random songs I'd forgotten about are doing so much for my heart, especially on the lower days of 2020. I really love how a song can take me back to a specific memory or season — for example, Mirah’s Advisory Committee... any song takes me right back to summer 2005 and what a time to be alive that was!
I’m not a very disciplined reader at home, I tend to get distracted easily but have just started reading bits of Don’t Push the River by Barry Stevens before bed, which is nice. Audiobooks and podcasts have become my go-to during walks.... Latest of those: Resmaa Menakem’s My Grandmother's Hands, and Brene Brown‘s new podcast ‘Unlocking Us’.
Any last words of wisdom?
Um, I never know what wisdom to share because there’s probably someone who’s already said it better... so here’s a quote I like because it’s always applicable:
Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue.
Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything.
Live the questions now.
Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.
--Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet
How can we find your work? Kindred Website - www.kindredyogacompany.com
Thank you so much, Kristin, for your beautiful work in this world & for sharing your rhythm devotion with us ~
I connect the flower essence of Prunella (Prunella vulgaris) as a beautiful companion to Kristin Richmond & her work in the world.
I made my Prunella essence during a hot July weekend in 2019 while visiting friends in Candor, NY. The essence process began when I gathered some of the abundant Prunella blossoms flourishing along the trailsides of Fairfield State Park & continued as the flowers soaked in the humid afternoon on the patio of the small cabin I was staying in.
Prunella is perhaps more popularly known as Self Heal or Heal All. This essence reminds us to take up space, spread out, unfurl, grow wonky if that is how we need to grow ~ thus it allows us to simply be as we are, where we are in our bodies. Prunella reminds us that we have a right to reach out beyond the confines of what is holding us too small; thus it allows us to explore & grow sturdy where we are planted, while also remaining flexible. I find that this is a large part of the reason why Prunella gives us a feeling of freedom.
Prunella is also an ally for those who feel at the end of their rope within their healing journey. Maybe they feel resigned to their illness or setback. Maybe it is that they need to constantly reach out for help from others. Whatever the reason for feeling stagnant or bogged down in our process, Prunella essence helps to re-fill our tank, re-inspires our own personal healing, & restore confidence in our bodies.
This essence is a beautiful one to have around, because it reminds us that we do have the ability to heal, no matter what, at any stage of that process we are in. That all we need to do is put our feet down on the earth & begin. Prunella helps us to prune away the excess/that which is bogging us down so that we can find simplicity within our practice & process. Prunella reminds us that healing & taking care of ourselves is not just one moment but rather a continuum, a ritual, & a practice. It is an act of learning about ourselves. Prunella says, Trust the wisdom of your body & love the unique skin you are in.
Find a bottle of Prunella flower essence for yourself or a loved one here ~