My yoga practice began in 2008, with my (truly inspiring and endlessly cool) friend Ben. He was home from NYU for Christmas and brought with him a podcast from the studio he frequented near campus. We didn't have mats, so we rolled out towels on his mom's living room floor. After a shaky, Bambi-legged hour of vinyasa, I was exhausted, euphoric and totally hooked.
Since then, my practice has steered me back again and again to my truest self. It's uncovered for me a deep, ringing truth: that our power does not reside in force, but in ease. It's strength and softness, fire and vulnerability in equal measure which imbue us with power and grace. For me, this balance is extremely elusive. Maybe I find it for just a few moments, and then I scare it away by trying to catch and hold it! But those moments, that's where the magic is. If I'm still and open, it might just brush up against me again tomorrow. The truth is, yoga isn't about executing a perfect handstand, or even touching your toes. Yoga is in the journey, the steadfast and steady practice, detached from the goal of perfection or the finality of the outcome.
Friends, I'm an an outcome NUT. A chronic perfectionist. My whole life has been a devoted effort to obtain the "right" results: good grades, praise from teachers, a standing ovation from the crowd. But...guess what? Focusing on the outcome almost invariably meant I was living with constant tension and self-consciousness, believing wholeheartedly in, and identifying with, my mind's chatter about whether I was good enough.
Letting go of that voice, that rigidity, that push, is truly clarifying and freeing. I don't mean being passive or apathetic or abandoning all effort. There's a clearing between those two forests, and it's surrender.
You are enough. Let's breathe into that space together, shall we?