Lora Hogan > Yoga  > How to handle crazy negative energy people

How to handle crazy negative energy people


Have you ever been in yoga class when….

The entire class is full.

The class has started.

And then that person with crazy negative energy comes in late.

Way late.

And decides that the best place to put his or her mat down is right next do you.

They look at you. They STARE at you. Until you move your mat, get ridiculously close to the neighbor on your right side and squeeze over to make room for the latecomer.

It’s like they have a radar and can zoom in on who the nicest person is in the room. They knew I would move. I’d feel guilty *not* to move.

But oh boy oh boy, was it a decision I regretted….Until I turned it into a learning love moment.

All through class. This latecomer with the negative energy. It was a rogue yogi.  I’m talking on full on negative energy, ignoring everything the teacher instructed, and just making her own yoga practice–the rest of us be damned.  This was the type of student who felt the entire class’s experience should be about her. She did handstands instead of warrior 1. She did handstands instead of three-legged downward dog. She did handstands instead of vinyasas. She did handstands instead of chair pose. And then she huffed and puffed until I thought she would blow the yoga studio down.

And I felt so overwhelmed. I was in this intermediate yoga class to have a guided practice. To relax. To be lead. And then I had this crazy person going all yoga porn next to me. (I mean, we’re talking throwing in extra boat poses when we are supposed to be in bridge before final savasana. No yin to the yang in any way shape or form….and her alignment made me SO SO SCARED she would get hurt!) Her breathing, her fever pitch, her complete approach and energy…it was driving me bat sh*t crazy.

And then I called upon my teaching. I decided to make this a learning moment.

And I just silently said to her “girl, I bless you.”

And throughout class, no matter what craziness she was doing, no matter how out of sync her breathing was (or when she WAS not breathing), no matter how many arm balances she threw in out of nowhere or how many times she ignored the instructor, no matter the tornado of negativity forming next to me, I stayed calm, I stayed kind, I stayed present. Because I said a silent, “I bless you, I love you.” Over and over.

The class became a meditation in motion for compassion. Inhale: “I bless you.” Exhale: “I love you.”


Did I feel angry and frustrated to be next to her? Darn tootin’! Was I alone? No, I could tell that everyone else around us was also annoyed and felt the negative energy.

But I did my best to shift that energy. I sent her love. Because what I was seeing in her was a direct reflection of an aspect of me I don’t like. I don’t like it when I’m not present. I don’t like it when I’m the Big Bad Wolf. I don’t like it when I’m in my head and not present to what’s happening around me. I hate feeling that way. Because it reminds me of a time when I wasn’t so calm, wasn’t so happy, wasn’t so present in the world around me.

And I’m just further along the journey than that negative energy latecomer yoga lady with all the cray cray yoga poses, breathing and self-imposed bubble.

Instead of wishing she hadn’t come to class, I blessed her for coming to class. Because I could send her healing energy. I could send her love and light. And I could raise the vibration for everyone else practicing around us. I could choose to feel love instead. (Click to Tweet.)

And I did.

I blessed her throughout class. And you bet your bottom dollar I blessed her immediately after savasana and for the rest of the day.

And now, as I write this post weeks later, I am still blessing her and sending her loving energy. In fact, let’s all send her ALLLS the love.

Because she’s not wrong. She’s not the Big Bad Wolf of yoga class. She’s just on a different level right now. And all we can do is send her love, healing, and recognize that we have the power over our own emotions and energy. We could choose to have her bring us down, or we could choose to life us all up.

I chose lifting.

I chose loving.

I bless you crazy yoga lady. I bless you. I am sending you love.


What would you do in an instance like this?


  • Jennifer @ The Champagne Supernova

    September 17, 2015 at 1:07 pm

    Loved this post, Lora, and it was right on target. A few years ago, I had a falling out with a close friend. She recently changed jobs and works in my building, and I have to see her several times a week in the elevators. Even when I don’t actually see her, just the anticipation of seeing her puts me on edge and in a bad mood. I don’t want to live like that and I don’t want to project that negative energy onto myself or others for something that happened a long time ago. I want to feel happy, peaceful, and authentically kind toward her without “faking it…” because everyone can tell when someone is being fake. I want to “get over it” completely and wholly move on. Next time when I think about her or see her, I will be thinking about sending love and blessings until the negative feelings are numbed and eventually erased. Thanks for sharing!!!

  • Alexandria @Al2getherFIT

    September 17, 2015 at 1:40 pm

    Great post Lora! I have had to inhale “I bless you” and exhale “I love you” quite a few times in life to crazy negative people! I got sick of letting them control my feelings and just putting a damper on my days! I choose to “love” this person because they aren’t leaving my life anytime soon.

  • Liz

    September 17, 2015 at 3:52 pm

    I love this! I always encourage people to make their practice their own, but don’t agree with full-on blowing off everything the teacher is offering. Like adding handstand into a vinyasa, sure. But not being in handstand while everyone else is in pigeon pose. Make the practice yours, but respect your fellow yogis and the fact that you chose to come to a guided class.

  • GiGi Eats

    September 17, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    THIS IS WHY I have been unofficially UNINVITED to all yoga classes around Los Angeles – BAH HA HA HA H H AHA HA AH!!!

  • Jenna

    September 18, 2015 at 6:52 am

    Such a tough stance to take! Good for you for staying positive and rising above. I would do my best to react similarly and hopefully would succeed at it!

  • Amanda

    September 18, 2015 at 7:45 am

    Lora you are truly amazing. I really don’t know how I would have handled this situation. Sending love would not have been my first thought. I’m in my BFFS wedding today and am so anxious about her crazy sister and another drama queen bridesmaid. They both have so much baggage I was physically exhausted yesterday being around them all day. Thank you for this message. I will try to send them both love today 🙂

  • Rachel @ A Forever Change

    September 18, 2015 at 10:42 am

    And I just silently said to her “girl, I bless you.” I truly love this!!! Remembering this throughout my day today!!

  • Di

    September 21, 2015 at 10:12 am

    tricky situation to be in, you handled it beautifully. I have to ask if the teacher corrected her in her “terrible form” though, or spoke to her afterwards?
    I personally haven’t seen this extreme person in class, or had them in any class I teach but now I’m wondering as a teacher how I would handle that… Thanks for that 😁

  • Chrissy @ Snacking in Sneakers

    September 29, 2015 at 9:33 pm

    Aw, what a lovely post Lora. I want to be as zen as you. I probably would have been mean muggin’ her because I am not the most patient person. I’m working on it though! Trying to take a lesson from you in calmness. 🙂