TRY THIS …
Today is one of those days … you know … EVERY day now is one of those days. EVERY day is National celebrate something day …. Today, June 21st is National Onion Rings Day, National HVAC Tech Day, and National Chocolate Eclair Day (oh that sounds good!) And then we have International celebrate something day. And today my friends, the United Nations proclaimed back in December of 2014, that June 21st is International Day of Yoga. Now before any of my peeps who “proclaim” they aren’t yogis stop reading this; please take 60 seconds to consider this. The word yoga means to join or unite. You are still with me, right!? Surely the word “join” or “unite” hasn’t turned you off. We have all “joined” or “united” with something in our life at some point, right!!?!
Ok now consider this mind blowing point … what if I told you that you’ve been doing yoga all along? That as long as you are breathing you are practicing yoga. That everything else; like the poses; are optional. Did you have any idea that the actual poses are just 1 small branch of a very large tree known as yoga? It took me 4 years of consistently practicing just the poses to actually learn this. It took me 4 years to learn that less is more. It took me 4 years to learn that pushing through; muscling through; struggling through the physical postures was only restricting my growth both on and off my mat. It took me 4 years to understand that the depth of my practice was ultimately my choice – that it’s not about how amazing or not amazing a pose physically looks.
I know – 4 years sounds like a long time. Especially in this fast paced, technology driven, quick fix, “just give me a pill” world we live in. But admittedly we all know 4 years passes in the blink of an eye. All of a sudden we are graduating high school, college, and for some of us all of a sudden our kids are no longer in diapers; no longer in kindergarten. As the years tick by I feel wiser; more youthful; yet I recognize I know far less than I thought I did – and it is actually refreshing! But what I DO know is what a consistent yoga practice has brought me. So in no particular order – here are 5 things yoga has brought me:
1.) Flexibility in body, mind, and spirit. It is easier and easier to just “go with flow” and navigate challenges. And I can *almost* do a split. Yin, Bikram, Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Kundalini….. doesn’t matter what type you do …. Just start and you will see how you stretch. Not just stretching your physical body my friend!
2.) Confidence. Do the work and you will re-learn just how awesome, powerful, and capable you are. Got cellulite? Can’t balance on 1 leg? Muffin top? NO ONE CARES. Ready for more work; more self discovery? Go to teacher training (TT) and you will crack open even further. TT will blow your mind.
3.) Safe space. Your mat and/or your studio is a safe space to express yourself, BE yourself, and show yourself. So let the tears flow if they show up.
4.) Respect & Love. For myself; for others. I thought I had all this and then 4 years later I realized I was just kidding myself.
5.) Space. I have more space in my physical body (literally). I am taller. I am leaner. But what is most remarkable is the space that can’t physically be seen. The space between a stimulus and a reaction. This space allows for more breathing room. And when we have more breathing room we are calmer; we are happier.
WHO DOESN’T WANT TO BE HAPPIER?
SO JUST DO IT
GET ON YOUR MAT AND STAY ON YOUR MAT