I love my Ashtanga practice, but today it just didn’t work out for me.
I had just moved from Australia and decided to visit my parents in Europe before I moved to my next destination—New York City.
My head was zooming through space at light speed (it didn’t even need coffee to keep on going) and yoga was necessary to keep me sane. Not only did I have lots of organizing to do, but I was also confronted with a few emotional issues coming back to my parent’s home (the so-called “Saturn return,” but that’s a whole different story worth writing about).
I did very well for a few weeks, but slowly became aware that perhaps I had too much on my mind when I noticed I suddenly couldn’t hold certain asanas that required a lot of balancing, not to mention the fact that I was getting stuck not knowing which asana was next in the primary series.
That’s a serious issue for a person who’s been doing this for the last three years.
So I had a few options.
a) give up
c) go for a run
d) fix it
I have learned that troublesome paths teach more than easy ones do and today’s practice made me choose the long way ’round.
I decided to sit in half lotus and realized pretty soon that I felt discomfort all along my spine, as if I had blockages (it also became apparent to me that my mind had picked up the word “stuck”). In Chinese medicine, this feeling is related to the Liver Energy, which in a balanced state is in charge of the free flow of Qi within the body. Ah! Thank Shiva for this light bulb moment!
I needed to flow freely. What was the best way for me to do so? I turned up my favorite music playlist, closed my eyes and started dancing to the rhythm of my heart; my body just moved the way it wanted to move. The more I let go of everything that was on my mind, the more I was able to feel myself becoming grounded on the things that mattered.
After an hour and a half, my Qi was flowing freely, I was enjoying my breathing and I was lying in Savasana with feelings of gratitude and faith in life.
Editing my own practice video afterwards made me realize I need to do this exercise more often. Letting go of emotional bulk is such an important practice for all of us and sometimes we have to choose the troublesome path to be able to do so.
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Assistant Editor: Andrea Charpentier/Editor: Bryonie Wise