Since I have stepped on the mat – yoga has taught me many things, so many that the prospect of answering this questions is pretty daunting! Here goes: Yoga has taught me:
- Your body has many stories to tell you – the more you move it, the more pages you will get to read. Sometimes these stories lead to physical changes or “side effects”, sometimes the stories are about your character and allow you to view yourself through a different light. Yoga is a detoxifying – you are literally smooching and bending your body in ways that we do not typically move. All of the smooching is going to squish stuff around in there and things come out! Emotions, energy, and your general body feeling are all put to the test when you first start to practice – and I would venture to guess this continues to happen in an ebb and flow through your practice.
- Comfort and stability in a posture are found when the breath is balanced and relaxed. In general, most of the time when we are faced with a challenge in life – we go at it with force and action. In yoga, much of the achievement of a posture has to do with relaxing – both the mind and the body. Using this learning off the mat can help you relax and allow life to be enjoyed rather than constantly feel the need to barrel through.
- Discipline is challenging. Thats it! Adding a new “something” to your life and learning how to fit it in, change the puzzle pieces around and modify your current existing is hard.
Yoga – seen as cool postures on instagram – is really a multifaceted approach to life. History, philosophy, and traditions flow through the true practice of yoga and most of it happens off the mat. I have absorbed everything that I have learned in Yoga Teacher Training, accepted what works for me, modified what needs modification for my life and beliefs, and set aside what may not resonate with me at all.
Yoga has taught me – you don’t have to do anything but be a good person, be who you are, and deliver your brand of “you” to the universe.