Every time I think it can’t get any better, it does. Stronger, calmer, more content, more in tune with my own body. The laundry list of ways yoga has improved my life, literally goes on and on. When I think, I usually think out loud. And the closest person to me is Chris, so I usually talk his ear right off. Half the time I’m messily talking about my dreams and goals (that usually make no sense to anyone except me, because they are a mess of thoughts) or I’m annoyingly talking about yoga (I assume it gets annoying).
Every few months I feel I hit a new realization with my practice usually a “holy crap, I didn’t know I could do that!?” or a “wow, I don’t think I would have handled that situation like that before yoga”. Lately I’ve been going through a ton of both and I realized that in general, yoga has made me a better human being. Both inside and out, but since the insides are truly what matter most I thought I’d talk everyone’s ear off a little about some of the realizations I’ve come to lately.
FOCUS ON MYSELF. In class, I’m in my own head focusing on my breath and my body. Half the time I’m transitioning and moving into postures with my eyes closed, to stay focused on myself and feel the breath in my body. It’s been carrying over into life, caring even less about what others are doing (because it’s not about me) and keeping my focus onto myself. Except for my kids and husband, but they are an extension of myself, at least in this instance.
SELF COMPASSION. Yoga has taught me to be kind to myself and my body. I still beat myself up better than anyone else on earth ever could, but it really has helped that negative self talk ease up even just a little. Which translates into being more compassionate to others, but for some reason that comes much easier than being kind to ourselves.
NOT TAKE THINGS PERSONALLY. Because it’s not about me, unless it’s about me.
ENJOY THE JOURNEY. Once I realized that the practice isn’t just about the postures, it’s about everything that happens before, after and all those beautiful in-betweens. It spilled over into life, I try much harder to enjoy the transitions, the travel to and froms. Rather then gunning for the destination and missing all those tiny in-between moments.
BREATHE THROUGH THE UNCOMFORTABLE. My yoga breath, is probably the most impactful skill I have learnt. For someone who is naturally anxious, it has helped take me through a difficult muscle burning posture, and now through a difficult public kiddo tantrum. Sure it doesn’t make uncomfortable or hard situations go away, but it really helps to get thorough them more calmly and keeps adult tantrums at bay…even just a little.
TEACH ME TO TRY NEW THINGS. Going to yoga for the first time ever was way outside of my comfort zone, and most everything that came afterwards has also been. Maybe it’s because I’m a bit more self-aware because of the practice, or more compassionate to myself – but trying new things isn’t quite as scary as it was prior to yoga. Public speaking? I’m pretty sure that’ll still make me pee my pants.
LISTEN TO MY BODY. I’ve learned that everyday is different and some days my body just says no to something, so I’ve learnt not to push it. Same goes for life, if I’m hungry I don’t keep going to a point in the task where I feel comfortable to stop, now I just stop and eat. Things are much better, and more productive when I listen to what my body needs, instead of telling my body what I need from it.
KICK AWAY SOME EGO. I should say learning, but yoga sure has taught me a lot about kicking my ego aside. Mostly it’s humbled me in so many ways, which has helped to beat down my ego even a little.
I have a feeling that someone who is a runner, or maybe a barre enthusiast has found similar things spilling over from their class/practice/run into their day-to-day lives. Has anyone found that a of those things make you, just an all around better you?
And to lighten things up a little, let’s talk about these yoga pants I’m wearing. They are my Dear Kate #nothingunder yoga pants. Built specifically so that the wearer can go commando while wearing them. Because who likes to wear underwear while practicing yoga? Only crazy people. I haven’t worn them into the hot room yet, I don’t think I will. I think the ‘extra’ coverage around my under lady parts (the part that makes them commando friendly) would make the pants too hot for the hot room, what an oxymoron that sentence is. But I will try one day soon and probably report back! So far I really dig them, but I mean what’s not to love about a great pair of yoga pants that aren’t see thru, and are built to go sans underwear!
*did you enter to win the yoga essentials starter kit from Manduka? The winner was just announced back on the post!