I remember when I was a beginner at practicing yoga. It was about 10 years ago. I had been to a few classes over the course of a year and it was by no means consistent. I was interested in continuing, but there was something about it that felt daunting.
How was I ever going to remember all those poses? How could I get to a point where I could count my breaths on my own? And what’s with all those different sequences?
These ruminations promoted the inconsistency. I only trusted myself to do yoga if I attended a class–so I never did a practice at home.
It was only after 4 years of sporadically attending classes that I decided to do try it on my own. Still, however, I felt the need to do way more. I’d only choose YouTube videos that were an hour long, thinking that anything under an hour was not a real practice.
How wrong I was.
Now, after teaching yoga for the past 3 years and keeping up a sustainable practice–I realise that it doesn’t have to be hard at all! I find that I bring yoga into so many different things of my day. Before I head out the door, I might do a few forward folds, or a sun salutation, or I may just lay on my back on the floor, enjoying the feeling of earth and letting go. I might even find that while I’m walking, I invite myself to stop thinking and notice the trees, the sound of the birds, or just take a moment to look up and see the expansiveness of the sky. My practice has peeled back, but the rewards are far greater. I feel yoga everywhere–not just contained in an hour’s practice.
So, I invite you, if you’ve ever had a similar feeling as a beginner student (or even an advanced student!), to just do one pose a day. Find one pose you are interested in. Research it. Get to know it. And do it once, twice, or even five times. But just do one. And maybe your pose is more of a meditation. Find a time in your day, even if you’re walking, to step away from your to-do list and notice the world around you. Do just one thing, and the next day do another. After the consistency of just one thing a day, you might find as well that a little less is a lot more.[Photo Credit: yogi Joanna Cantor by Ali Kaukas]