If yoga is "the settling of the mind", there is one question you can continually ask yourself to see if you're moving in the right direction: Will this bring me closer to balance?
I have a really hard time saying, "No." I think most women do. We live in a society that has conditioned us to please others - often at the expense of our own peace.
I was offered an opportunity to do some yoga-related side work recently. I was honored to be asked. And I could feel the automatic, "Yes! Of course!" rising up in me.
Instead I said, "Can I sit with this for a while?"
I knew this work would be very easy for me, yet every time I thought about saying "yes" - I had this feeling in my stomach.
In the past, I might have dismissed it as nerves. However, when I got really still and quiet and honest with myself, I could tell it wasn't nerves. It was my body telling me that it wasn't the right thing to say "yes" to. So, I said "no" and knew immediately it was the right choice when I felt my shoulders and stomach relax.
Don't misunderstand, we all have to do things we don't want to do and deal with situations that we would prefer not to. Saying "no" is a luxury we don't always have.
In those instances, what brings you closer to balance is the attitude with which you approach these tasks and situations. You might ask. "Is my mindset bringing me closer to balance?"
Yoga is the settling of our "monkey mind". (Or yoga chitta vrtti nirodhah in the Yoga Sutras.)
And nothing settles the mind more than continually moving toward those things - attitudes, jobs, relationships, and even yoga asanas - that bring you closer to your center. And only you know what those things are!
I would argue that any action - on or off your mat - that brings you closer to balance and into greater alignment with your true self is your yoga practice.
Want to practice moving toward greater balance together? Join me for a class.
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