Yoga

I have never been a fan of New Years resolutions.  They always seem superficial to me.  However, this year I did feel compelled to implement a new habit.  In early January (2018), I started reading Autobiography of a Yogi, which was at the same time that I was working to  add more leisure activities into my schedule.  So, I decided to start learning about and practicing yoga.  This was a bigger challenge for me, mentally, than it was physically.  In the past, I always found an excuse not to accept the challenge of yoga.  Part of me felt intimidated, like I was not ready for the yoga journey, that for some reason I would be unsuccessful.

Recently, something clicked in me and I became frustrated with the excuses I was making for myself.  I knew that it was time to face my irrational fear of yoga.  I was suddenly ready to show myself that I could do it.  Also at this time, one of my cowokers invited me to yoga class with her.  This was the universe, giving me the chance to do what I said I wanted to do.  So, on January 26th, I went to my first yoga class, Slow Flow Yoga with Kelly.  This was a huge deal for me, as I have never been one to enjoy going to the gym or dealing with the large number of people there.  Realistically, I was pretty nervous.  I had no idea what a yoga class was really like and a likely incorrect idea of how to do a handful of yoga poses.  This was going to be…interesting.  As I felt by body stretch, I could also feel my body sink into the rhythym of the poses as well as my breath begging to sync.  Although it was difficult, and I could not hold a few of the poses for very long, I thoroughly enjoyed myself.  I was surprised the next week when I found myself anticipating and looking forward to attending another yoga class.  In the beginning I wasn’t sure where my yoga practice would take me, but I felt I was off to a good start.

 

At first, I challenged myself to practicing twice a week.  Once a week seemed to be aiming low for me, but too frequent would have felt like an obligation and overwhelmed me.  Accountability and consistency are things I have struggled with, when trying to implement a new habit.  To help with this, I attend a class every week.  I feel a sense of accountability to attend class, so that helps me stay consistent with my practice.  To practice at home, I have started following a YouTube channel Yoga With Adriene.  Currently, I am up to practicing at least three times a week!  Some days, I wake up between 5 and 6am,  to start my day with a “stretch and strength session”.  A couple of months ago, I would have never imagined myself to be actively practicing yoga.  I attribute my consistency and progress to how great I feel!  I genuinely look forward to the burn of yoga, the satisfaction of holding a pose longer than before, and the mental pause that allows me to focus solely on myself.  I love the relief of leaving my worries on the mat, then getting up, feeling lighter.  I feel that my self-determination has increased, as a result of how empowered I feel. I stopped “trying” and starting doing.  I no longer stand in my own way!  It was actually that simple.  Even when I feel sore and sleepy, I make myself get up to practice.   If I can sit in class for 3.5 hours, or at work for 8 hours, I can dedicate a fraction of that to myself.  I deserve that, at least.  It only takes a decision and then an action.  You can do this too! I hope this inspires others to find and connect with their inner yogi!

Read my first Yoga update here!