Have you tried yoga? That might be the last thing you want to hear when things aren’t feeling great. It has become the go-to question of well-intentioned friends everywhere. I saw a commercial recently that had this exact storyline. The person feels down, a well-intentioned friend asks if they have tried any yoga classes, cut to yoga studio scene of the person trying an impossible pose and falling out of it with a giant eye roll…
Sadly, yoga has been presented as a cliche fix-all-that-ails-you activity if and only if, you can nail that perfect pose. The truth is, the practice of yoga is a tool, not a cure. It’s a process. It is a commitment to your own personal growth and healing journey.
Even now, many years into my yogic journey, if I’m not feeling great and someone asks me if I have been practicing, I want to roll my eyes and get snappy. My next instinct, and usually the one I go with, is to take a deep breath and answer honestly.
Have I used the tools that yoga has taught me? Do I need to get on the mat and recommit to my own journey? Yup. Thank you for asking. I know it won’t fix everything, but yoga paves a road that you can get on to start moving forward.
Getting on the yoga road can be overwhelming. When people ask me what kind of yoga they should try, my answer is always the same. You try what speaks to you. Everyone is different and there is no one size fits all yoga practice.
At its core, yoga is a personal practice. It takes some investigating to find the yogic tools that work for you. Yoga for beginners is just that. It means that you are beginning your yogic journey. You are getting on the road. We are all experiencing different physical and emotional states, and those states fluctuate over a lifetime. Yoga expands our understanding of those states so that we can pass through them with as much grace as possible.
Where do I start? What if I can’t do the pose? Should I take a morning yoga class or an evening yoga class? Where is the best yoga studio? AHHHHHHHH!!! Already it seems overwhelming.
Come back to the thought of yoga being a tool. What do you need to address right now? How are you feeling in your physical and emotional body? Take some time to ask yourself these questions.
That is actually a big part of yoga. Reflecting on the state that you are presently in. The right yoga studio and the right yoga teacher will take the time to guide you in this process. It is as unique as you are.