Life can be a dizzying, ever-moving carousel. No stops, just a constant cycle of waking up, going to class, do that thing you really wish you didn’t commit to, work, sleep and repeat. Believe me, I am no stranger to the madness. Slowing down for some legitimate self-TLC can be like getting a cat into water. When your to-do list can rival the length of your last end of semester term paper it can feel impossible to just take a second to breath.
I am going to let you in on a little secret to combat the seemingly endless grind: that to-do list is not going anywhere and you will always have this or that to do. I know you have heard the whole self-love spiel about a thousand times but I am here to tell you that taking some time for yourself really is all its cracked up to be. I recently decided to take on a 31-day yoga journey that taught me a lot about the art of slowing down and finding the love and light within myself.
Find what feels good. That is the phrase the YouTube blogger Adriene emphasizes in all of her yoga videos. The 31 videos were designed to help both newbies and advanced yogis steep as much out of their practice as possible. Adriene guides in a way that encourages the viewer to accept where they are in that moment. She explains that even if you can not reach your heels to the ground in downward dog or reach that difficult pose it does not mean your practice is any less valid. We must learn to listen to the body’s cues in order to truly live in the moment of the practice. Each day cultivates a new sense of awareness.
Within a week I noticed a transformation in my yoga game. My time on the mat became fulfilling and meaningful in a brand new way. What amazed me even more were the changes reflected off the mat. There was a new sense of connection between my mind and body that I have never experienced before. Throughout my day I would find myself checking in with my body, sitting up straighter, taking pride and appreciation into every action. I have found love for the body that carries me from adventure to adventure in this life.
For me the challenge has provided both physical and mental improvements. Anyone else out there plagued by that evil little gremlin called anxiety? For as long as I can remember my inner monologue has been a constant stream of “OMG, OMG, OMG.” As I continued with the yoga challenge, however, my worries seemed to melt with my new daily practice. Don’t get me wrong, I still have anxious days. But I have found tools to calm the gremlin and I know at the end of a stressful day my yoga mat has got my back.
This challenge has truly changed my life and I am so grateful. The best way I could think to give thanks is to spread its message. Maybe someone out there reading this will try the challenge and reap the same magic from it that I did. With an open mind and an open heart maybe, just maybe, you could create a revolution in your own life.