How to start your yoga journey…
a.k.a. “tools to turn your lazy “someday” bum into a yogi buttasana!”
“Love what you do and do what you love. Passion is the key that opens the door to joy and abundance.” -anonymous
It's so easy to stare at pictures and become overwhelmed with the thoughts like, "I want that," "I'll never be able to do that,” or the even more dangerous "someday". Why is "someday" more dangerous than "never"? Saying you can't do something, or this will never happen can spark an intense desire to prove that belief wrong - "No, forget that ‘never.’ I WILL DO THIS!" "Someday" on the other hand, puts your dreams aside. Someday fools you into thinking there will be some day when this dream is just handed to you or will some how be easier to attain. Forget "someday," forget "can't" and "never." Here's how I turned my lazy "someday" bum into a yogi buttasana!
1. I believe it was Cinderella that sang "a dream is a wish your heart makes"
Instead of being fast asleep, dream while you're wide awake! Let your heart wonder about doing your first arm balance, let your heart soar at the idea of striking dancer's pose for the first time, or does your heart long for the peace and tranquility that a beautiful meditative practice can bring? This is the beauty of yoga; whatever your dream or goal, yoga has the tools to get you there. So dream away future yogi! This is just for you, and this is so incredibly personal. The trick is to let go of what you think you want, turn off your mind and let your heart sing! When those “can’ts” slip into your mind concentrate even harder on the flutters your heart gets when you think "but maybe I can!" Because here's the secret - you really can!
Side Note- Each “little” accomplishment is to be celebrated along the way, because they aren’t little! Yoga is a journey; a life long journey, enjoy the ride!
"You are the average of the five people you spend time with" -Jim Rohn.
2. I think this needs to be modified for today's times to include the social media you choose to surround yourself with.
We are constantly online (FB, IG, Foursquare, Cody, Pinterest, Twitter, does this list ever end?!?!?) Some people advocate to break up with these medias, I advise to do the opposite. Before you get too excited, there are strings attached. Go to your FB, actively search for pages that promote the lifestyle you want (YogaTravelTree is a great place to start! Mind, Body, Green is another great one, but don’t stop there), like these pages, let your newsfeed surround you with positive imagery and articles promoting your desired lifestyle. Do this on all your social media - when you're on Instagram follow the plethora of amazing yogis out there. When you're on Pinterest and are already bombarded with "How to's," follow pages that pin "how to chatarunga correctly," or "how to meditate deeply," basically anything that is a manifestation of your dream. This doesn't mean you have to unfollow everything else, or immediately forget who you are today. The opposite in fact, remember this person you are. You just need to start becoming aware of not just the people you surround yourself with, but also the social media that is always present in our lives today.
2.5 Okay,you liked them.
Yay! They are all over ALL of your feeds… Well, start reading them if you haven’t. Start slowly. Allow the curiosity to naturally grow: “well, what are five habits all active people have? I want to be an active person, I want to WANT to go for a run, I want to WANT to go do yoga.” Read that one article. Think about it the rest of the day. Then another article, then another. Here’s the thing, you’re just allowing the natural curiosity and desire you already have to take flight. Repeat after me, “I Will What I Want!” (Thank you ladies of Under Armor, this mantra has been instrumental for this particular Yogi!)
I know, we already went over social media, but, well, you're going to want an IG account if you don't have one already. Instagram has the greatest yoga community a beginner could ever ask for. They don't care that your chatarunga is wobbly and really more of a fall. They care that you tried, that you are working at it and most importantly that you had fun doing it!
Side note- I tell this to all my friends getting started with yoga- HAVE FUN! Smiling and laughing are some of the most important tools we have to make our lives better instantly.
Back to IG. Dip your toes in, follow some of the amazing yogins and yoginis you find, follow people like you just getting started, follow people that are "middle of the road"- not experts and not beginners. The more you surround yourself with others living your desired lifestyle, the more your desire will naturally grow. At first you'll just watch all these yogis doing these challenges or playing tag (yes we play "stop, drop and yoga" as a game of tag-it's awesome!). One day you'll start seeing these people aren't super human, they're just like you! They, just like you, possess a desire to better themselves - mind, body & spirit. The love and support of this community can simply not be overstated. That being said, you have to make that first effort to thrust yourself into that community (don't worry, we're all here with open arms waiting for you to dive in!)
(Disclaimer- you'll be posting yoga picture after yoga picture with a couple more yoga pictures, and then maybe just one more because, “omg you can't believe you just got that pose”- and we in the IG yoga community want to see them all!! post away my future yogis! Here's the but, your “regular” friends might not care to suddenly be overwhelmed with yoga pictures- and that's okay! If you don't want to lose or change that original account, just create another. One dedicated to your yogic journey - again the IG yoga community LOVES seeing people on their journey, wherever on the path you may be).
4. Let that desire build and churn inside.
Let that fire intensify until there's no way out but to get on the mat and do something. Anything! You might go to a class, so obviously listen to your teacher. You might try at home, just playing around with different poses you've seen others do (please always keep safety in mind), you might have that DVD you bought along time ago, but hey there's no time like the present to watch/do it. You might join CodyApp,and take some of their classes. Cody is like Instagram but for workouts; with the added feature of having AMAZING workout plans you can purchase and access anywhere on your phone/tablet/computer. Their community is just as awesome and welcoming. Oh, and as an added bonus, those classes are created by the yogins and yoginis you're going to find yourself following on IG - they want you to know what they know! They want you to empower yourself! They want to see you fly!!!!
5. You're on your way!
Your fire has been lit! Now do what you can to help it grow!!! Jump farther into this beautiful yogic pool! Embrace this new you!!! If people are negative and holding you back from being who you want, let them go. You don't need to kick them to curb or burn that bridge; just let them go. (Some friendships, no matter how much we treasure them, are actually toxic to us. That doesn't mean that friend is a bad person; just that maybe you two aren't bringing out the best in each other. That's okay. You can be friends from a distance, or wish each other the best, cut ties and move on. Easier said than done, but you'll be happier - and so will they - when that toxicity is out of your life.)
6. Keep at it my friend!
All these steps can’t be done over night. This is a long road, but if you truly want it - it will come.
Thats what I did to change turn lazy “someday” bum into my yogi buttsana! I keep focused on the long journey ahead of me, (which I look forward to sharing with all of you), but every now and then I proudly look back at how far I’ve come. That’s my last little bit of advice to you: Don’t forget where you started, don’t forget to look back, don’t forget because remembering makes all these changes and accomplishments that much sweeter! Namaste my friends.