“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you” Lao Tze
I discovered yoga at Uni when studying performance – my teachers used it to rouse creativity. I didn’t know it at the time, but this was the beginning of a great love affair.
Like all love affairs, there were hardships. I walked away from yoga many times. But the thing was, it was always there for me. Ready to comfort regardless of what was going on. My mat was a happy place. A place of continuity. A place of quiet in amongst all the noise.
Then I hit a low point. Rock bottom. I was emotionally and mentally sick. Stressed. Anxious. Exhausted. Unhappy. It was a blessing in disguise.
I committed myself to more yoga. Then Yoga Teacher Training. It was best decision I ever made. Just for me. I have learnt to be kind to myself. Treat my body with respect. Be grateful for what it does for me, even though one day may be different from the last. I’ve learnt to identify the negative stories I was telling myself. And the best part, I’ve learnt to live and love more fiercely than ever.
I’ve learnt that yoga is not just about the physical practice – the shapes, asanas. I thought it was. Why could I make a shape last week and not this week? Why can that girl in the cool yoga tights do it and not me? My mind would race in class.
Then I learnt to practice non- attachment. To not be attached to the results of what I set out to do. What that meant was that I needed to stop beating myself over the head and be truly grateful for what my body was able to do. And appreciate how it made me feel after. I found contentment this way. What I’ve learnt is when accept yourself respect comes. Importantly, I found happiness in who I am and everything I do.
Yoga is my way of life. And I’m still on the exciting journey as a humble student. I hope to share some of that with you.