Am I ever tired of having these conversations with myself: “You cannot do yoga every day”, “You can never get into that twisted pretzel pose, you might hurt yourself”, “You should not try to push your luck. You had some breakthroughs but really, that’s enough for now.” I am determined to vanish these thoughts for good and replace them with “I can I can I can” attitude along with heaps of patience and perseverance.
Theme of the Yoga Flow Series #5: Cultivating a regular yoga home practice so grounded and so strong that it dispels all notions of excuse, doubt and evasion and leaves you with all the benefits of a steady practice.
At the beginning of May, I started to practice yoga every day. Luck in all its generosity sent me two most delightful companions who joined me on the daily yoga challenge. From east coast to west coast, we practiced on our own and then shared our joys and struggles with each other. A treasure of an experience! The challenge is still on-going; I plan to finish out the month of May as the first month with minimum an hour a day commitment to yoga and I will share the experience of the 31 day challenge upon completion, of that you can rest assured. In this post, half-way through the challenge, I want to send out a message of motivation to all of you (something I could have used when I had bouts of doubt and excuses against daily practice) and share my 3 lessons along the way.
The 3 Lessons from Yoga Flow Series #5:
1. When unmotivated, start yourself on auto-pilot:
Motivation is the hardest thing when you do not go to a yoga studio for your practice. I only go to studio twice a week so I had to fill the gap on other days for my daily practice. It is easy to talk yourself out of practice! Next time you feel tempted, try this method which I learned to be true about Eleanor Roosevelt. She believed that motivation comes to us late in the process. However, we can invite it by first starting on the things that we love in complete auto-pilot and then watch motivation slowly slip in. So next time it’s time for yoga, trust me and just go through your sun salutations and see what happens.
2. With home practice, you really get to know yourself:
I love going to the studio and practicing with my peers but there is a different element altogether to practicing in your own home and by your own self. Yoga is beyond a physical exercise. It is a path to self-exploration and the process goes deeper when you are in your home environment and in your own company. Listen to the thoughts in your mind and be fully aware of the ways you go through your practice. No matter what sequence of poses you do, when no one is watching, you are doing the version of yoga with which you are most comfortable. You are becoming the true version of yourself through yoga in solitude.
3. Freedom to Explore
A natural consequence to not having a structured class is both a dilemma (what poses should I do?) and a sense of freedom (I can do any pose I want!). Taking care of your body and making sure you are warmed up enough for each pose is extremely important but with that in mind, you can go ahead and play and practice your favorite poses. You can make it fun and exciting to have your own yoga hour for whatever you wish to do to take your practice deeper and deeper.
Penny for your Thoughts:
Love to know what home practice you do for yoga? If you never have practiced at home, what has kept you? And if you have never practiced yoga, I must speak to you immediately! Share your thoughts, whatever they may be, and especially give me feedback on the video please!