Most of the yoga you do is when you’re not in the studio.
One thing that I love about my job is all of the people I get to meet. I talk to people all day, and get to learn about their goals, successes, and struggles. Since I’m recruiting, most of my day is connected to LinkedIn, and just like I’m looking at their profiles, they’re also looking at mine. It’s not uncommon that we get on the subject of yoga since that’s listed on my profile.
How did you go from yoga to recruiting? Why did you get out of the freelance world?
One of the conversations I had recently really stood out. The lovely lady I was speaking to told me she was also a certified yoga teacher. We started sharing experiences about our training and practices.
I told her how I used to be so obsessed with the practice. I practice yoga to quiet my mind, but at the same time, I was obsessed with the postures. I would get so angry at myself if I didn’t practice one day, or even if I practiced a different style other than Ashtanga.
She said to me, “I had a yoga teacher that said, Most of the yoga you practice should be outside of the studio.”
I really liked how she (or her teacher) phrased that.
We all know it’s true. We know yoga isn’t about the postures. We know it’s about inner peace, forgiveness, non attachment, love, gratitude, acceptance, etc.
Yoga doesn’t even have to be practiced as yoga postures. You can learn it in any form, and it just has to be practiced daily. And, it can be practiced daily in different ways.
And, practicing yoga daily doesn’t mean that life or difficult situations automatically become easier. In my experience, it can be more difficult because you have to really look yourself in the face and admit your faults. You have to own up to everything. You have to face your past and let it go. You have to forgive people that you said you never would. You have to become really vulnerable. You have to dedicate your life to becoming unattached. You have to face your biggest fears. You have to let go of things or ideas that are holding you back that are no longer serving you. It’s not easy to commit to living the yogi life, but it is way more rewarding.
Yoga teachers and practitioners are still human.
Sometimes I get the feeling that there’s this image of yoga teachers being these superhuman enlightened beings. We still experience sadness, anger, fear, and all of those challenging emotions. We still make mistakes. We might even have road rage. Yoga helps to get through those difficult times with a little more grace than before.
I’m able to breathe through it. I have little mantras or dialogues that remind me that this will all pass. When I feel anxiety going to sleep, I practice focusing on one point. I focus on the feeling of my inbreath and outbreath, and when I get distracted, I bring the focus back until I calm down. It works!
I’ve been slacking on my asana practice, and I can feel the effects. My stress is higher. I’m more distracted. My body hurts.
I’ve let a lot of things get away from me. But, my years of practice have taught me how to still practice daily. I still use my breath, awareness, and knowledge of meditation to calm the stress in my chest or tightness between my shoulder blades. I use my breath to slow down when my mind won’t stop and I try to find a solution. Sometimes I find that I can’t sit and breathe for a long period of time, so I make myself do a few sun salutations, or alternate nostril breathing instead. Or, maybe I just take a walk to clear my mind.
I create awareness and ask a lot of questions. Why am I angry right now? Why am I comparing myself? Why am I saying these mean things to myself? Why am I thinking mean things about another person? If I can stop to ask myself these questions, it always turns into something positive. How can I be grateful for this? What did I learn from this? How will this help me? How can I be more accepting of myself and others? Just asking questions always calms me down because I realize my suffering holds no truth and is self created. It’s my battle, and no one else is to blame.
When I started my new job, my life became way more busy. I was working overtime to learn a new skill, and just wasn’t managing my time that well. A lot of things fell away. I’m not mad at myself for it because I love what I do. I needed this time to focus and adjust. Even so, missing daily yoga from my life feels empty, and is completely noticeable.
Practice is important, but being kind to yourself is important too. It’s not yoga to beat yourself up – especially about yoga.
I’m ready to get back to my daily practice, whatever that may be. I still practice Ashtanga, but I like to attend classes where I learn other styles. I love to just practice in the presence of a a room that flows with acceptance and love.
Over the past two weeks, I’ve received emails from people telling me that they checked out blog, and they loved it. My subscriber lists, Facebook group, and YouTube views keep growing, and I’m not doing anything about it. It’s made me really miss it.
I’m excited to get back to this community online and offline. I was nervous to post this honestly. For the last month, I’ve been excited to start blogging again, but didn’t know how to start. It felt so foreign to even login to my WordPress account. I haven’t looked at my analytics in forever.
You can’t move forward until you get out of your comfort zone.
You just have to start. You just have to do it.