Using Yoga: Taking the Practice into Real Life

It was Monday morning at 7:30 when I sat down to write this in an email.  Right now, I don’t have any childcare on Mondays and Wednesdays, this means, although it is Monday, when most people get things done, I’m usually at home, trying to manage entertaining two really little ones (without the use of TV, although, I admit, I do use screen time to help me out sometimes) while still TRYING to do things–you know like writing emails and blog post!  Well, like I said, I sat down to write this email while the kiddos were happily eating their Honey Nut O’s, and here it is, after lunch, and the email still hasn’t been sent.

No, I haven’t had a chance to practice yet, either.

I was going down a slippery slope of frustration, anger, you name it when it dawned on me, there IS a better way to handle this.

I don’t know how many of you have small children (or did), but I’m sure you’ve felt overwhelmed, anxious, frustrated, stressed out–the whole nine yards–have you ever said, thought, or done something you regretted?

I know I can’t be the only one.

Well, today, when it dawned on me I was on the edge of that doing just that– (as my daughter was helping me to season tonight’s dinner currently cooking in my trusty crockpot because this mama ain’t got no time for gourmet,) and the “pinch” of garlic powder turned into more of like a slightly yellow snowfall all over my kitchen….right before I blew up in a very non-yogic manner, I had sort of an “out of body” experience, where in a split second of one breath, I saw myself lose my temper,  and how it made me feel, as well as how it impacted my daughter and son–and it dawned on me, I CAN react a different way.

Thank God for that split second!

I chose to not get upset about the Garlic Powder snow and sauce covered stovetop and make it a lesson–both to myself and my daughter.  

Have you ever gotten so frustrated you just sort of blew up like a bursting balloon? (I know I can’t be the ONLY one…) How often have you been in a yoga class and wanted to scream at the teacher for making you hold that dragon pose ANOTHER SECOND –which feels like an eternity–or in a power class, and you’ve been in darn Crescent Lunge for what feels like 5 minutes and the teacher cues, only 5 more breaths–when instead of breathing you want to say a few adult words…YOGA.

Yoga helps that!  Yup, you guessed it.  It’s when we are in the most challenging circumstances both on and off the mat that our true yoga practice happens.  Instead of blowing up about a little mess, I took a deep breath, said, “uh oh! this is why we have to be VERY careful when we cook dinner.” (suffice it to say, our family will be safe from any vampire attacks at least for tonight after this garlicy meal.)  

When you’re in your next Yin class and the teacher calls out a hip opener that makes you want to punch people (Oh, wait, that may just be me with Frog), or the next time your teacher holds Extended Side Angle, or Plank Pose for an eternity, instead of thinking about how much your muscles are burning, maybe think about the AWESOME practice that you’re getting at managing uncomfortable situations that come up in life.

Maybe you’ll never face a garlic powder snow storm, but I have no doubt something will come up that will make you want to respond in less than savory ways.  I encourage you to practice your yoga, and try to remain at peace, even through the discomfort of the present moment. Know, this too shall pass, and it’s how you respond in this particular moment of discomfort that is character.  You may surprise yourself with how calm you can be, even in the storm.

I’d love to invite you to join us in a yoga class, so you can work on your mind, body, and spirit.  You’ll find that each class will challenge you in one, two or all three of those areas–and that once you face that challenge, you’ll feel AMAZING, lasting results.  Yoga isn’t about wearing the best clothes, or having the coolest mat. Yoga is a personal practice that’s sharpening your entire being–making you better with each breath.  Join us today to experience this amazing practice! www.thriveyogaandwellness.com/class-schedule.  I can’t wait to see you on your mat.