July 9, 2017
Dedication to your practice
Where did June go? AND HOW IS IT ALREADY JULY 9th?!? With the excitement of hosting new workshops in the studio, progressing in my yoga teacher training, and preparing for my trip back to Chicago to see my family and to host my state-side wedding celebration, time has flown by.
In all this happy chaos, my personal yoga asana practice has slipped. My dedicated home practice went from a daily 90 minuets to sporadically squeezing in 30 min every other day. The more I slack, the bigger of an obstacle it seems for me to get on the mat. I begin to have this horrible perspective that if I cannot do a full practice, why do anything at all?
As I went to Yoga Teacher Training yesterday (as I do every other Saturday), we read out this parable:
A man decided to go walking in the heat. He quickly became lost and dehydrated. He continued walking and the more he walked, the worse he felt. Soon, he was so tired and dehydrated that he began to see mirages of water. He chased these mirages, desperate for relief. The more he chased the mirages, the worse he felt.
Miraculously, in his wanderings he stumbled upon a real river. He sat at the river’s edge, and looked at the water longingly. Another wanderer passed by, and asked the dehydrated and exhausted man why he did not drink from the river. ‘clearly you are thirsty,’ he said. ‘Why don’t you help yourself?’
The dehydrated and exhausted man said, ‘oh, this river is far too much for me to drink. I could never finish it.’
Each person reading this parable might have their own insight, but my interpretation is that it isn’t about perfection or personal expectations, but rather about having the perseverance and dedication to take action. Just taking a sip of the water, just rolling out your mat, just making time and doing yoga. Unhindered by obstacles like perfectionism, self doubt, or perceived lack of time, in taking those crucial first steps we can begin to make things happen. Whether we roll out the mat to simply sit and breathe for 5 min or to bust out an intense asana for 95 minuets, it doesn’t matter. What mattes is that we are stepping onto the mat and carving out a space for us to reconnect to our bodies, to listen to our minds, and to allow us to gain a clearer perspective.
As I head off to Chicago next week, I will be packing my yoga mat and dedicating time for my practice.