The first time I rolled out my mat I wasn’t sure what I would think of this “Yoga” stuff. I went to that class and I was hooked. But at that point, I fell in love with the physical aspect of it at it. It was a great workout! What I didn’t realize until after attending a few more classes and being consistent with my practice, what it would teach my whole being. Fast forward 8+ years and it’s still teaching me. Here are a few of my favorite (not all) things that yoga has taught me.
5 Things Yoga Has Taught Me
Yoga is about breathing, mindful breathing. There is no yoga without the concentration of breath. I often tell my classes that if they just came and laid on their mats and just focused on breathing, that’s ok –that’s yoga and sometimes that is what you need. The poses and moves are an extra benefit. Yoga brings you to the present moment through breath. As you practice yoga you connect with your breath. By slowing the breath and focusing on the breath you can move through or hold poses. I’ve taken this practice into my everyday life and applied the long, slow breathing during times that are tough or stressful and it helps – tremendously. It calms your mind, brings you to the present moment and helps shift your perspective
Live in the Present
When you are truly present amazing things happen. You become more aware and appreciative of everything that is around you. Practicing mindfulness is not easy, but yoga has taught me how to be better at it. Time goes way to fast, be in the moment.
Gratitude, Gratitude, Gratitude
Mindfulness and Gratitude go hand in hand. Yoga has taught me to take a look and find the good in everything. Especially the small things. The smell of coffee in the morning, the smile on my son’s face when he gets home from school. I count my blessings every day with gratitude. Even during difficult times, there is always something to be grateful for. When we find and express gratitude we start to feel a connection to everything – natures, people and ourselves.
Self-Love and Compassion
Yoga teaches us to peel away the layers, let go of the stuff that doesn’t work anymore and breath new life, love and light into our being. Self-love makes us better moms, dads, husbands, wives, people. Yoga showed me how to cultivate that self-love and bring it into my everyday life.
Enjoy the Journey – You are exactly where you need to be
Sometimes it’s hard to believe that or understand it. Believe me, I’ve been there (we have all been there). Yoga taught me that to find the lessons and learn as I go. It taught to let go of expectations, to dig in and accept whatever comes my way. There is a reason. You are here for a reason and everything you do is one step closer to being the best you. God, the universe, whatever your belief has a plan for you. Open your heart and listen to it.
As I mentioned above, yoga continues to teach me new things. Yoga is my “thing”. Of course, I am always telling people they need yoga and I 100% believe that. But if yoga isn’t for you, that’s ok. I encourage you to find something you connect with and love, listen to it there is something to learn.