“I Hate Yoga”

I Hate Yoga!

Yes you read that correctly. We live in a culture where we are conditioned to LOVE everything and if something is hard, we just move on and do something else that makes us feel good. Instead of dealing with conflicts or challenges, we just delete and un-friend people from our lives.

In relationships, we easily discard the ones that have issues.  Just look at the divorce rate. When it’s hard, just give up. That is what our culture is teaching us. There are many options and it’s easier to quit and do something that will make us feel good. When I have a tough yoga class, (and I often do) I want to quit! I can easily do other types of workouts, Pilates, barre, dance, tai chi, cross fit, zumba, etc…when something doesn’t work out, there’s always something else.

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In my yoga class this week, about twelve minutes in, I was done! I was challenged and I wanted to leave. In my mind, I was battling. “What am I doing here? I hate this!” I have a love/hate relationship with yoga. Although in the moment, I hate it, I love who I’ve become in the process. Yoga teaches me surrender, patience, self love, non judgement, how to overcome fear, perseverance, self acceptance, all in about seven breaths. All of 30 seconds! In the moment that I was ready to bolt out of class, I learned how to persevere through the tough pose. Before you know it, we were back in child’s pose. Ahhhhh…

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I confess, I want to be good at everything. I don’t like not being good at something. You can’t fake yoga, you either have the pose or you don’t. The frustrating part is that one day you may have the pose perfectly and the next time you do it, you’re falling all over the place. Yoga keeps me on my toes:) but isn’t that real life? You have victories and successes one day and then you fail miserably the next day, sometimes in the same hour! The lesson is how to fail gracefully. How to breathe through the rough moments of life. How do we respond when the going gets tough. I know it sounds trivial that I’m learning these important life lessons from yoga but this is a place where I know I will learn some of these important tools even if it’s just for one hour a week.  It’s one thing to know it in my mind and mentally understand it, it’s a whole other ball game when you can physically experience it in your practice.

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Persevering through the pose doesn’t guarantee that I’ll get the pose perfectly next time. That’s why it’s called yoga practice, not yoga perfect:) That’s not the goal. For me, the goal is who I am becoming during that pose. How was I mentally, emotionally, spiritually? The physical practice is not the point.  The physical accomplishment is just a by-product of the practice.

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So as you go about your day today, be mindful. What do you hate? What do you do during those moments? Whether it’s traffic, an unpleasant work environment, family drama, teenagers, tumultuous relationships, unemployment, financial problems, etc… How do you get through these moments? Do you drink to “take the edge off”, do you go off and unleash your anger, do you give in and overindulge in food or other substances, do you just check out and give up, play on your smart phone or computer? No matter what your default is, fight to stay present. Feel the emotions, breathe through it. This too shall pass. Let the moment teach you something, otherwise, it will keep coming back until you learn it.  That is the TRUTH!

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Let us embody what surrender and peace looks like. Enjoy the process my friends. Persevere through the tough moments in life and love who you become because of it!