Last week I came across this comment about the impact of yoga here.
“You can lie about some things for a little while, but eventually whatever is not right in your life will become very clear. Whatever shit you’re putting yourself through, whatever you’re doing to other people, whatever you’re avoiding, that will come up in your practice. You’ll see it and though you might try, in time you won’t be able to ignore it anymore. And you’ll have to change it.”
This, very briefly, is why I love yoga. No matter what, if you put the work in, it wakes you up. It forces you to pay attention. It works on you – silently, knowingly, lovingly.
I’ve been practicing yoga since my early 20s, but only began practicing regularly in the last three to four years. In that time, everything from my career, to my friends, to my hair and clothes has changed. The things that don’t serve me, or worse, hinder me, have fallen away.
At times, it seems like these changes have happened magically, but other times it’s been with great effort, and sometimes, great struggle. But there’s also an ease to it, or a natural flow. When I reflect on the things that are different now, it’s almost as if I can say, “Oh, of course that had to happen.”
I don’t know what goes on behind the scenes, but I think yoga has this effect because it calms you down long enough to connect with the underlying flow of things. And when you can do that, you begin to see what’s working and what’s not. Sometimes this happens in one class, and sometimes it takes years. Sometimes it’s subtle, and other times it’s so loud I either want to run out in the middle of class and get started or I want to slide back into child’s pose and pretend I don’t know what I have to do.
On the days when I’m open, I get it. Other days, I’m not up for hearing what it has to say. And that’s okay, because it will tell me again tomorrow, and the next day, and the next. Until I hear it. And until I DO SOMETHING.
That’s where it becomes magical. Eventually, I in fact, do something. Often, things I think I can’t do. Yoga somehow empowers, and makes what is weak, strong again.
Maybe it’s the connection to the universe that does it – the tapping into the source, they say, of what we already are, which is powerful, and strong and open. Maybe it’s just that my abs are pretty solid these days. Maybe it’s a combination of the two.
What I do know is that yoga just asks you to do the work. And when you do, it rewards you rather nicely.