Connecting With Self On… And Off The Mat August 3, 2011

Have you ever been in a yoga class where the instructor invites you to draw your energy inward?  To let go of all external things, focusing on yourself, and becoming more aware of how you feel in the present moment.  In a class setting with lights low, quiet music playing, and your eyes closed it seems almost like such an invite is possible.  With time and practice the invite becomes easier and easier to accept.  In fact, as a student and teacher this is the part of class that I enjoy the most.

For me, it’s a time when I can truly unplug from the world with its demands and responsibilities.  As an instructor I enjoy the energy that is created from a group engaging in the same goal.  It becomes a tangible moment of serenity.  Why is it that once the lights come on, the music stops and our eyes open it becomes a foreign concept to put ourselves first?  We rush back to our social labels of spouse, parent, business owner, teacher, etc……..forgetting that we’re at the core of these descriptive words.

Often times we’ll mask feelings, or thoughts trying to keep the good face forward.  Don’t miss understand, I agree that there is a time when such actions are necessary.  However, I become concerned that we can move through each day never truly connecting to our true emotions, or our true selves.  Is this how we want to spend our lives?  I would think not, or at least I would hope not. 

So, how can we incorporate more of our true selves into our daily lives? I don’t think drastic measures need to be taken, but rather carving out small moments of time to draw our energy inward. For example, instead of rushing out of bed in the morning take the time to acknowledge the breath.  Rest the hands on the stomach.  Enjoy the rising and falling action of the belly while being filled with gratitude to meet a new day. 

Take a walk and leave the Ipod behind.  While walking take in the sounds of nature.  We might find as we listen to our enviroment,  we’ll also notice more of the beauty that surrounds us each day.  Try walking into the local coffee shop, instead of rushing through the pick up window.  Lets indulge ourselves a bit, and enjoy every moment of our special treat.  These are some ideas that just might allow us the opportunity to reconnect with self.  In doing so we’ll become more aware of how we feel each present moment….bringing our yoga practice into our daily lives.

How else could we create time for self?  I would love to share in your ideas.


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