5 Ways Yoga Is Like A Good Friend
1) It’s there for you whenever you need it.
Whatever is going on in your life, whatever you are feeling, yoga is there for you, just like a good friend. Whether you are happy, or sad, or angry, yoga will be there to hold you, to listen to you, and to guide you through it. All you have to do is get on your mat.
2) It doesn’t judge you.
Some practices can be emotional (thank you, hip-openers!), bringing up feelings that might usually be suppressed, such as anger or sadness. But the beauty of stepping on the mat is: the walls come down, allowing true awareness to flow into your being. And there’s no judgement. Yoga is your friend. Yoga accepts you as you are: a wonderful human being, who makes mistakes and has big emotions.
3) It leaves you feeling better (most of the time!).
Sometimes it can be difficult to practice yoga, especially when you’re tired, emotional, or just completely stressed out, but think of the times you’ve vented to your best friend, who just sat there and really heard you. Those moments probably left you feeling refreshed, with a new outlook on your situation, and ready to take on the world. Yoga can do the same thing. Get on your mat, lose yourself in a Vinyasa sequence, feel the energy move through your body, be present with your breath as it moves you through each pose, and feel your spirits lift. You will leave the mat feeling vibrant and light.
4) It helps you realize your true potential.
Some practices can be frustrating. You try to get into a certain pose every time you get on the mat and you just can’t seem to get it. At this point, you begin to doubt yourself, or become angry, but yoga will help you through the self-doubt. For years, I struggled to do any type of pose involving a twist. I wanted so badly to twist just a little bit more, just like every one else could do (big mistake: comparing yourself to others!). But I have come to the realization that I have a limitation in my lower back that prevents me from moving past a certain point, and that’s okay. Yoga has helped me find my true potential in the twist yoga poses (or all yoga poses, for that matter) and that is to just be in the pose where it feels most comfortable.
5) The longer you go without it, the more you need it.
I’ve been reading a lot about the importance of self-care lately, especially after having kids. We put others (husbands, kids, clients) first and neglect ourselves. We neglect our passions, our desires, and our need for rest. We neglect our yoga and meditation practices. But if we keep going down that path, eventually we will have a mental break down, which isn’t good for us, or the people we are taking care of. It’s very clear that self-care is essential to our well-being. Just as missing out on hang time with a best friend (also an element of self-care) leaves you feeling depleted, so does neglecting your yoga practice.
The new year is a great time to reignite your yoga practice. It’s like a fresh start. So, if you haven’t practiced yoga in awhile, just know that it’s waiting for you. Dust off your yoga mat and say hello to your good friend, who you know you can always rely on.
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