Stop and smell the roses

Stop and smell the roses – both in the asana and in life

The biggest lesson I have learnt from my 200 hour teacher training so far? To enjoy the process and appreciate the baby steps which I am making rather than fight to get to the final asana immediately. Enjoy the journey getting to the goal. I now try to apply this not only to my yoga practice but in my daily routine at work, at home, wherever I am.

I am a busy person who juggles work, with motherhood, being a wife and now teacher training. I love these different roles, but usually this requires me to function at 100 miles an hour. I go on auto-pilot and try to leap frog to the end result without taking time to enjoy the process – that’s the only way I thought possible until I started the teacher training course.

The same applied to my Sirasana (headstand). When I discussed the struggle of Sirasana with my class mates, I realised that it wasn’t fear of falling that was stopping me. Hey, I had rolled over several times. At least I was ok with falling. It was more the struggle to take one thing at a time. I would try to leap directly to the end position rather than taking baby steps to get to the final asana. This meant that I would swing my legs up wildly and hope that somehow they would end up suspended gracefully in the air, which to my exasperation they would not.

So I decided one day whilst practicing in my living room that I did not need to go all the way up – but just bring one knee and tuck it close to my chest, lift the toes up. Maybe the second step on another day would be to bring the second knee close to my chest and just stay there with both feet off the ground. Breathe, enjoy this step and be happy with the progress, not frustrated that I wasn’t at the end goal. Once I had accomplished having both legs close to the chest, then bringing my legs up wasn’t half as difficult as I imagined. By breaking it down into baby steps I had a better sense of body awareness and balance.

I know I’m not going to be able to hold this for 3 minutes immediately. So every day I am practicing holding Sirasana for a few more breaths. I know that I will eventually get to 3 minutes with patience, tenacity and practice. And the more I enjoy the process, the easier the final asana will be. Now I am off to buy myself some flowers – as a reminder to stop and be grateful for the small steps which I am making.

Namaste Sabine xx (200 hr weekend TT)