Many associate yoga with spiritual learnings and awakenings. During the infancy stage of my yoga practice, I wasn’t able to draw the connections between asanas and the philosophy of yoga. If I were to recall my very first experience with yoga philosophy, it would be the “giving up” stage. I reached a stage in my practice where the lack of asanas knowledge became a hindrance to my practice. I was not able to improve in my asanas and I lost the drive to continue. I was constantly comparing myself to the other students in the class and trying to push myself to achieve what they could do. The failure to do so set me back mentally.
I decided to “back off” and take a break from yoga. I felt the the years of practice seemed to be wasted. I wasn’t sure what the intent of my practice was and how I could move forward with it. During the break, I reconnected with myself and tried to find a deeper meaning to my practice. Soon I found the value in the process and contentment in my daily practice. No longer have I sought betterment through comparison. It also cleared my mind to help me navigate better through my practice.
While I continue to hold the passion and fire to drive me forward in the practice, I stay conscious of my intent and not let eagerness overtakes it. The process of coming back to yoga seems like the various aspects of niyama falling in place, filling the missing pieces in my yoga journey.