I’m pleased to welcome back Erin Brennan with another guest post today. Erin wrote about her yoga challenge in a previous post. Here’s Part 2 of 3.
Take it away, Erin…
Originally, I thought this challenge would be hard and things would get easier. I was wrong.
It was a roller coaster of change and I had to come as I was each day as if it were my first class.
Confession: There were some days where getting to class just wasn’t possible. Sure, I could have made it to the studio, but at what cost?
I tried to do some downward dog on the airplane but the flight attendant asked me to fasten my seat belt.
Getting up at 2am to get in some sun salutations wouldn’t have been good for me. It in no way helps me put myself first, in fact it does the opposite. No good comes from running myself into the ground just to adhere to my challenge, but it also means breaking “the rules.”
At first I felt like a failure, one week in and I was already making excuses.
Then I started to re-think why I was doing this. If yoga once a day was a way of learning to love myself, how was beating myself up for not getting to class helping my cause?
I didn’t skip class out of laziness. I wasn’t looking for an excuse or an easy way out. This wasn’t even a pattern … there were extenuating circumstances and on that particular day doing yoga (aka loving myself in the moment) meant not going to class.
You win some . . . You lose some
Before you go thinking that I reached enlightenment after a week of yoga, let me explain that there were many lessons throughout the month, and not all of them were wins.
A mere week later I learned the exact opposite: sometimes not doing yoga means not doing yoga.
It was a sunny Sunday and I was being whisked away on a surprise day-date. I found myself in Bodega Bay enjoying a lovely afternoon of beach, sun, food, and wine. I knew I needed to get back for class.
While I definitely tried to get back, I didn’t exactly protest when my date told me, “ I have one more thing to show you.”
A long adventure, some unexpected traffic, and several hours later it was clear I wasn’t making my yoga class.
I was silent most of the way home. Not because I was mad at my date for keeping me out longer than I had asked. I was mad at myself for not making myself a priority.
I was having fun, yes … but I made a commitment to myself and I abandoned that commitment at the first sign of entertainment. It was easier and more fun to go with the flow. I didn’t really want to rock the boat.
My inner yogi was not proud.
How often do we find ourselves in the same situation. Ignoring that nagging voice that tells us to stick up for what we want or know is right.
This situation was vastly different than the compassion I had shown myself just a week earlier. Instead of judging myself, I chose to accept progress instead of striving for perfection.
I was trying. I was doing my best. And that was just going to have to be enough.
It’s okay if it looks different than you thought it would
- It isn’t about the yoga. It is about choice.
- It is about choosing that what you want and what you need is more important than the things people want and need from you.
- It is about setting time aside for yourself.
- It is about making a commitment and sticking to it.
- It is about finding your voice and using it to stand up for yourself.
- It is about choosing to take care of yourself instead of taking care of everyone or everything else first.
- It is about following through.
- It is about being more intentional with your time.
Take a long (and honest) look at where you are right now and where you want to go.
Embrace that it will probably look different than you thought it would, but that isn’t an excuse to quit showing up with your A-game.
We need to remember to give ourselves compassion. To look for our progress before we judge our lack of perfection.
And above all else, to keep trying !!
View all posts in this series
- From Burnout to Bakasana: 38 Days of Yoga - June 1, 2012
- Progress Over Perfection: 27 Days of Yoga, And Counting - June 28, 2012
- The Journey of a Reluctant Yogi - July 9, 2012