Helpful Tools For Maintaining A Yoga Practice.
When we start out on the path of yoga we tend to get excited and try new postures. When learning new things it feels great and we may even feel like we're making a lot of progress when we achieve that pose.
Then we might hit a plateau where nothing much is changing and we feel discouraged. When we get frustrated on that plateau and allow the negative thoughts to get louder, we may plummet from practice altogether and walk away.
If we look at three of the main Hindu gods: Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Brahma is the creator god (represented by earth), Vishnu is the preserver god (represented by water) and Shiva is the destroyer/transformer god (represented by fire). We need to focus on the tough job of Vishnu here. It's easier at times to create or destroy a yoga practice but to maintain it takes strength, endurance and stamina.
So how do you keep a consistent yoga practice?
Embrace The Journey.
Whether you started this practice to get physically fit/flexible, find connection, gain peace of mind, or to live a healthier life, know that you can only get there by embracing the journey, there is no destination! Just like there is no final posture only more variations from our imagination playing through the shape of our bodies.
Keep Your Mat Rolled Out And Play.
The term "Out of sight, out of mind." is definitely relevant when it comes to keeping your practice consistent. If you leave it out it will call to your tight muscles and pinched nerves. Be creative, have fun and do what feels good to your body. Start with your breath rhythm, add some poses you like, pepper in the ones you don't like and feel where the journey takes your body.
Make It A Priority.
Start thinking of your yoga practice as a priority and commitment. Make it a part of your daily routine, like eating, brushing your teeth and getting dressed. Once you make yoga a part of your day, then it’ll be much easier to stay consistent on a regular basis.
Practice With A Friend.
Not only will you have more fun together, but you’ll hold each other accountable. If you don't have a friend who practices, come make one at the studio. Having a yoga buddy can help support, inspire and keep you going especially on those days you'd rather stay in bed. Then afterwards, grab a cappuccino or lunch and chat more about all things yoga…or not :o)
Do Yoga Any and Everywhere.
You don’t have to wait to get on the mat, or for the next class- include your practice in your daily activities. Maybe sun breaths or salutations while waiting for morning coffee, sitting in a hip opener while reading, tree pose next to your favorite tree, or goddess twists in Home Depot. Get creative, keep moving and enjoy the present moment.