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The Yoga of Falling in Love: It Begins and Ends in Mountain Pose

Yoga | Yoga Poses

I fell in love with myself while standing in Tadasana. Hands at my side, eyes closed, breathing deeply…

It is a powerful experience to fully claim our space. In that moment, I deeply connected to the idea that I am the Mountain of my life. During every rage, heartbreak, and moment of true desire—I’ve always come back to stillness when those moments reached their end.

They always end, don’t they? The amazing moments where we feel truly alive, and the unexpected moments where we feel gutted by life… All transient.

Standing in Tadasana, I felt as if I’d won. All of the healing, anxiety, fear…

There I was. In Mountain Pose. Breathing. Whole.

It’s All True Love

Standing on my mat, I was awakened to a new experience of feeling this much love for myself. This is not a typical state for me to dwell in, even though I believe in love.

I feel acutely. I am a hopeless romantic who swoons over sweet gestures and sighs during movie scenes where hearts finally release all of the love they’ve been hiding within themselves. I lose myself in songs expressing lost love and listen with the intention of being brought back to that space of heartbreak.

Even if it is not my current reality, there is something romantic about having loved so hard it feels as if we'd suffocate without our beloved. The air we breathe feels thin and every breath feels shallow during those experiences.

My heart loves falling in love and craves its awakening. Even its death is sacred because it represents our potential. That is what we grieve in a love ending, isn’t it? We grieve our somehow lost potential to love fully.

What if I told you that, every single time you’ve ever gone weak in the knees from the kiss of another person, you were the reason why?

You showed up for that moment. You allowed your heart to mirror exactly what it loves—to feel completely seen. You were in a state of full appreciation for yourself and your precious heart. You showed up in that moment to be loved. To BE love.

Looking for Love Within

As we recognize the mirror image of our heart in others, we must also look within for what inspires love. Where can we share that part of ourselves with the world? What feeds it?

For me, I find an endless ocean of love within when I show up for myself. Whenever I push myself a bit harder to make progress, I’m showing up for love. When I fall out of a pose, or fall out of alignment in my life and allow myself to sit there for a moment…I’m showing up for love by practicing acceptance.

When we recommit to ourselves, we are showing up for love. ~Nicole Markardt

We are continually a child, a parent, and a friend to ourselves. It is then, after looking within and examining what awakens love within us that we can truly show up for love outside of us.

The Destination Is Inside of Us

We drink wine, begin new relationships, tackle badass yoga poses, and try the latest health craze longing to truly know ourselves in love. We want to finally get it right. What if we stopped seeking outside of ourselves? What if we tried to love ourselves for who we truly are…where we are right now?

I haven’t figured out how to stay in this space, but for now…In this moment, as I pen my words, I'm aware that I know exactly how to awaken the acute love inside of my roaring heart. In this moment, I know that stepping into this experience creates even more space to fully love others.

In this moment, I know what to eat, how to spend my free time, which yoga classes to attend, and which words to speak in order to fully love myself. I know that when I do this, my mirrors will show up and they will affirm my expressions of love.

As I stand in Mountain, I am fiercely unmoving from this experience of self-love. I will forget soon. Maybe tonight.

Once we step into awareness, however, the process of uncovering is complete. Our findings then wait in our heart to be remembered once again. I know I will need remembering, but I also know that I can show up for myself without masks, judgment, or fear.

Then, I’ll fall in love all over again. Isn’t that what happens when we fall in love—with others and with ourselves?

Featured in New York Magazine, The Guardian, and The Washington Post
Featured in the Huffington Post, USA Today, and VOGUE

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