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Practice To Be Better

    Image: Fritz Paneth
    Image: Fritz Paneth

    People that are really into yoga call it their practice.
    They’d say something like I am so glad I woke up early to practice this morning.
    Or they’d ask a friend did you practice yet today?

    Meditation is pretty much the same…it’s considered a practice.
    Unlike performers whose rehearsal culminates in a performance, practice is ongoing with the intention of learning, or instilling patterns of behavior or movement.

    I’ve actually got a bunch of stuff that I’m practicing.

    Whole Body Listening
    (I could probably just search through my blog tags to find them all.)

    The reason I’m practicing is because I want to be better.
    And the way practice works is that if you keep at it, you will see (or feel) progress.

    Well– today in yoga, it happened — I felt the progress of my practice.

    It was with handstand.

    Towards the beginning of class, the instructor helped me balance by holding my legs. This taught my body what the pose felt like, and what it had to do to stay there.

    So when it was time to try on my own, my body knew that feeling of squeezing my legs together while my hands pressed firmly into the floor.

    I got it!

    I went right into handstand, and stayed for several breaths.
    A little later, I tried again, and got it again.

    I think the teacher’s help was huge, but I’ve been practicing handstand for years!
    Today just happened to be the day it clicked– when my practice had seeped into my body so I didn’t have to think about it.

    I tried again towards the end of class, and I couldn’t find balance…I fell.
    Perhaps my arms were tired. Or I had allowed my mind to fill up with fear. Whatever the reason, I didn’t do it.

    And this is why it will always be my practice.

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    4 thoughts on “Practice To Be Better”

    1. Thank you! It felt awesome while I was up there…I kind of wish I got a photo taken because who knows when I’ll do It again.

    2. SirenaTales

      Elysha, Thank you for the inspiring post! You paint the picture so vividly, I feel as if I were there–and of course, I am cheering you on. That’s such a transcendent moment–when the practice has been sufficiently integrated that we fully embody it….like surfing a lovely wave and joining with its energy. I know you will be in handstand again soon, and until then you are on the path. Yay you–and us, for having you here to inspire. xoxo

    3. ST, It did feel like a huge achievement, but was fleeting… as are most things in life. Thank you for being here (and cheering me on!). Your support and encouragement mean a lot to me. xoxo

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