One thing I often see in the studio is students who get impatient and frustrated when they can’t do something “right”. They struggle to get into the full expression of every posture and if they wobble or fall out their faces show real disappointment.
If I could interrupt the dialogue and talk to them, here’s what I’d say: There is value and benefit in striving to be your best in every pose, but that does NOT mean you have to be perfect. The goal of yoga is unity between mind and body. If you use your mind to criticise and castigate yourself when your body is still learning all you do is create tension and discomfort. Instead, accept your body as it is, in every class, and treat the difficult postures as an opportunity to explore and grow. It is better to be present than to be perfect.
This quote from the poet Rainer Maria Rilke expresses it beautifully:
Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language….Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.
How does yoga help you ‘live the questions’? Share in the comments!