So this week marks my one year anniversary of assisting at Fahrenheit Yoga Studio. Over a year ago I decided to take advantage of all these crazy Groupon deals and check out what hot yoga is like. Considering I have always been somewhat sensitive to heat (I do not like to be hot), I don’t even know why I tried. And yet, I did. I love yoga and I was up for something different. Obviously, it pulled me in. Now, a year in, I’ve experienced the effects of how my practice in the studio has spread to my everyday life. Yes, I’ve increased my flexibility and have a whole new love for the heat and all the benefits that come with that, but the incredible way yoga affects more than simply the body has made such a positive impact on my life.
Now I find myself able to find my dristhi (my point of focus; my center) in otherwise hectic situations. Now, I push my body in love and acceptance instead of frustration and fear. Now, I enjoy the challenge of the balance.
My wonderful yoga teacher likes to tell us to find the quake and tremble in our poses. It’s such a powerful point for yogis that moves beyond the practice and into your daily life. There is this magical spot – it’s beyond a position that is completely comfortable and it’s that perfect tipping point before you’ve gone too far. To further your practice, you balance between the ease of a pose you have achieved and then push yourself just a little beyond. Find that point where your body holds you, yet you feel the quake and tremble of a challenge. You want to push yourself beyond simply being comfortable, while acknowledging love and respect for where you are in your practice. Let go of the ego – it’s okay to fall out of a pose – and it’s even better to get back in. When you fall out, you’ve found that point, and sometimes falling out is the only way you discover where your best challenge is.
Wow. Think about how you can apply this in every area of your life. We hear so much about finding balance in life – but we all know life doesn’t balance equally in perfect portions. Sometimes work is super busy. Sometimes parenthood is a highly demanding stage of little ones underfoot and your social life is nonexistent. Sometimes, you are sick and everything else is on pause. Balance doesn’t mean we keep things equal.
Balance means we listen to our body, our mind, our soul.
Try some yoga practices in your life today. When you wake up, set an intention for the day – maybe you want to find focus today, or simply feel love. Keep your intention clear – and then start the practice. Balance throughout the day, constantly re-aligning yourself to find that perfect sweet spot between complacency and challenge. Push yourself to love a little more, do a little more, and have grace to try again when you fall out. It’s only a failure when you don’t recover from it. But those times of falling out – of missing the mark, being over-stressed and not your best self – those are the moments to re-align and find that perfect balance again. To push yourself with love, not ego, competition, anger or fear.
Find the quake and tremble in your rhythm – look for where you can improve balance in your daily life and push yourself. And always, always, remember to come back to your center.