Michelle Mineo‘s thought for the day. What’s in your head when you show up to class? Probably, first on the list, the physical goals. To strecth, to open hips, to sweat, to work the kink out of your back, or who knows what else. All great goals, all things that can conceivably be achieved.
I had a student say to me yesterday, “I love that I can go to class and check out for an hour”. A most fabulous and appropriate response. For many of us, it’s a giant sigh of relief to step away from all our “noise” for an hour to be on our mat. But what if there’s more?
If you have ever come to one of my classes, they are almost always “progressive”. As the hour progresses, we build into harder and harder postures, and you always have the option of progressing only as far as you want to. What if we look at “presence” in progressive terms? Step one, showing up for class. Step two, considering the physical goals for your practice. Step three, checking out, letting your stuff go for an hour, not thinking about the dirty baseball pants, or when the water bill is due or whatever. Step four, CHECKING IN. Maybe there’s more than just not worrying about your stuff!?!
Maybe the next step is to present during your practice. To not let your mind wander when you are tired or bored or in a “uncomfortable” posture. Evil yoga teacher that I am, I make all my classes hold warrior A and tree FOREVER for that very reason. Feel the burn, and don’t walk away from it. As a distance runner, I read somewhere, if you can get past the first 8 minutes, you’re IN. Your mind will stop rebelling and you can run . What if, in your practice, you CHECK IN to the posture and stay past the burn, past the discomfort until you find the peace or a deeper stretch, Trust a me when I say that not all yoga challenges are about standing on your head. Sometimes they are about getting out of your head. And sometimes actually staying in your head and not backing away from the “God this is hard” thoughts is a more progressive practice.
Try it and see.
For the month of June, at Bexley yoga we are encouraging our students to “check in” to their practice. And for fun, we are going to use “checking in” on Facebook as part of the challenge…….rack up your Bexley Yoga “check-in’s” and see what’s in it of you at the end of the month!