When I graduated from yoga teacher training, I was given a beautiful, red, leather-bound journal. This was intended for me to put down my yoga class lessons. I put that book aside, feeling that I could never write a yoga lesson worthy of that book. The book represented all of those perfect yoga poses, and I hadn’t even mastered Headstand unsupported.
Three years, some notecards, and a few cheaply made notebooks later, I came across that red leather journal. Although my yoga teaching is still not perfect, I am proud to say that it has brought movement and flexibility to many, who have taught me way more than I have them.
I decided to use that red book, because somewhere along the line I realized these 4 things:
1. Your Practice is Practice
Just as when you practice yoga, you teach within your knowledge and scope. When you practice it is about noticing the body in space and working within that space, not about how far you can bend.
With more practice, your capabilities change and your comfort level within your body builds.
2. Yoga Helps You Relax and Breathe
You don’t need to aspire to those poses that seem far out of reach. Within our society of constant mindless busy-ness, we need this structured practice to bring our bodies back to a natural calm state.
Your practice should not be goal oriented; being present and truly mindful is the achievement.
3. You Will Improve
Accepting where you are in the moment does not mean that things will stay the same.
You will have practices where your balance is off and your mind wanders. You’ll also have days when you surprise yourself with how connected you become with your breath and your body.
4. You Will Connect
Yoga has a way of connecting us to our bodies, causing a flood of tears one day and a shot of joy the next. It is not the perfect pose or squeezing yourself into a pretzel.
Like the heels touching the floor in Down Dog, it is not a goal, but a result of working, flowing, and moving with intention.
It is the thoughtfulness of yoga, bringing the body awareness into the mind and becoming aware of the intertwining of the two. It is the awareness that you are worthy, at any point, of a red book or any beautiful thing that you are given.
How did you learn to accept your yoga practice as it is? Share your stories with us below!