Taking a Break from Yoga
Ok, well, not really, but yes, I have been taking a bit of a break from yoga. As many of you know from my blog posts, social media updates and personal encounters, I have been learning Italian. After chatting with two other of my fellow yoga teachers, I realized how fun, yet challenging, it has been to study something besides yoga. I hope this does not sound like blasphemy, but it is the truth.
I have been practicing and studying yoga for over twelve years and truly have dedicated my life to always learning more about this beautiful and ancient tradition. But, it has been fun to think a bit outside the yoga box (for a lack of better words). Funny, but true, I often talk about yoga during my Italian sessions. So, I am not sure if I actually ever take a “real” break from yoga. But, learning Italian gives me an opportunity to work my brain, and my patience, in a total different capacity.
In our Western culture, we spend much of our yoga practice focusing on the physical, while the real emphasis should be on the mental. For me, learning Italian has become a way for me to use my mental yoga practice off the mat. 12 years post-yoga, I am a completely different student. I am still an extremely hard worker, but I allow myself space to make (lots of) mistakes and I laugh at myself quite often. Twelve years ago, I was completing my Masters in Business and was a complete spaz. There was no laughing or mistakes allowed. LOL!
Learning Italian is so similar to stepping on my mat. Everyday is different. There is always more to learn. Some days I got it and some days I do not. The self-patience I learned through twelve years of practice shows up every time I try to read an Italian paragraph, reply to my teacher in Italian, flip through my huge pile of flashcards or attempt to send an email in Italian. I have learned to slow down and keep trying again and again. And, then I have those moments where I grasp that grammar concept or finally pronounce a word correctly. This is all so similar to when I was learning crow, headstand, backbends and even learning to be completely still during savasana (my most challenging pose:) Even if we take a break from yoga, yoga never leaves us. It becomes an intricate part of who we are. It becomes part of our daily actions, our personality, the person we were and who we are becoming.
So, with all this blabbing, I leave you with this. Take a break from trying to learn more yoga and try to use your yoga to help you learn something else. Just to be clear… I am not suggesting to stop practicing yoga, but rather just allow your practice to be and allow yourself the freedom to try something new. Take your practice off your mat and out into the world. I look forward to hearing about what you discover inside and out.
Grandi Abbracci a Tutti,
Big Hugs to All,
XO – L