Inhale to prepare, exhale to step or float back, Chaturanga Dandasana. Inhale Upward Facing Dog; exhale Downward Facing Dog. Step your right foot forward in-between your hands and spin your back heel down, inhale arms up and exhale to open to Warrior II. YAWWWN.
Has your practice become so stagnant and routine that you’ve found yourself uninspired to make it to the mat? Do you find yourself going through the motions during your 6pm vinyasa flow, glimpsing at the clock as you anticipate predictable cue after cue from your beloved teacher, looking ahead at what’s for dinner or just wanting the whole thing to be over and done with?
This happens all too often in today’s yoga landscape: Student finds yoga, then student finds favorite teacher. Student continues practicing with favorite teacher day in, day out, until student becomes bored with favorite teacher and seeks out a new one. Student finds new teacher and latches onto what is temporarily perceived as “different,” only to grow tired of that teacher’s style or voice or cues or sequencing, before drifting to another teacher, and another, and another…
Sound familiar? It doesn’t have to be this way, and the solution might not be what you think. The key isn’t necessarily to continue to seek out the hottest or hippest or most cutting-edge teacher who keeps things fresh with creative flair and a killer playlist. The secret to rekindling your love for the practice lies within the inherent qualities of the practice itself: acceptance of what is, and taking skillful action.
Wait…what? If you thought yoga was about sweat and strength and flexibility and achieving the fullest expression of a pose, well, you’re not alone. Many practitioners have expectations about what they think a practice should be or should look like. But placing expectations on a particular outcome of a practice will only lead to disappointment and dissatisfaction.
Yoga, after all, is now—not the future, not what has already happened, but developing clear insight of the present moment. Yoga is not viewing life through a distorted lens of perception, but seeing things as they are and being truthful about that observation.
Yoga is acceptance of the present moment, and the only real goal is to cultivate contentment. Expectation leads to discontentment.
This is not to say you should just stay as you are and remain stagnant. To practice yoga is to practice self-inquiry; to do what needs to be done to take action to move beyond the current state of affairs; to truly know yourself and to move in the ways which are wise to your body and mind. What if I told you that a practice does not even need to be strictly regimented, nor does your life does not need to revolve around yoga for you to become “advanced”—despite what social media might portray. Sometimes all that is really needed to reignite the spark is to just pause, sit, and surrender—to learn to become at ease with what is. That’s your practice. It’s not to long for the day you’ll be able to fold in half like a pancake and touch your toes, not to kick up into a handstand or a fancy forearm balance, not to put your leg behind your head. Yoga is now.
Find the true essence of yoga.
My teacher, Alexandria Crow, creator of Yoga Physics, a precise methodology that’s based on biomechanics and functional range of motion, agrees. Years ago, at the height of her popularity, she appeared on the cover of many magazines—sometimes with her leg behind her head—until she injured herself numerous times from, as she describes, poses that exploited her underlying hypermobility.
Since then, she’s been on a crusade to understand why. Why did this happen to her body, despite being a good……..click HERE to read more on Wanderlust’s site.