For anyone out there that practices Yoga you know what I am talking about. Just hearing the words “arm balance” is enough to send you straight into savasana or wanting to run out of the room! I would have never considered myself to be a “yogi” but all intents and purposes I am. Nothing leaves me feeling more clear, inspired, strong and motivated that a sweaty hot yoga class – but despite my regular practice there is something about the arm balance that raises my anxiety level. So the other day I dug a little bit deeper to figure out why – as with every pose in Yoga – there is meaning to take beyond your mat and into your everyday life.
I am strong and fit and I practice yoga regularly (gold star! just kidding – it’s not a competition) – there is absolutely no reason that I shouldn’t be rushed with excitement to stand on my head or do whatever pose comes my way. The other day a not-so-typically practiced arm balance was thrown into the mix (this is typically the point in the practice when everyone starts looking around at each other to validate their confusion, perhaps not-so-discreetly check other people out in the mirrors or my favourite – pretend you are in desperate need of a well-timed water break – genius!). So knowing that I am strong, I am fit and I practice regularly – you would of course accept the “challenge” and attempt to send your body flying into the air like a sweaty superhero – right? This superhero didn’t even try. Instead – I chose the easy route and took a break while having the conscious conversation in my head – “if I tried I could probably do it”. I left the class feeling disappointed in myself for not even “trying”. After all I am the confident girl who just does things – without hesitation – a strong, fit and well practiced superhero, on and off my mat. When I got home I immediately needed to prove to myself that I could do it. So with nothing between me and the ground other than a few inches (and 5 spectators in the forms of children and dogs) – I tried. And guess what – I could. So I asked myself – what was I so afraid of? falling on the ground? or rather – “potentially” falling on the ground in front of a room full of others who more than likely have the exact same feelings as me. So what – right?
How many opportunities and challenges are you faced with everyday – big or little – that you just don’t even try to take on because of the “risk” or “fear” of potentially having a less than perfect outcome. Even with all of the skills, confidence, strength, focus (insert all of your superhero qualities here), we are so focused on who is watching, how they are going to perceive us and what they are going to think. And this all coming from the confident girl who just does things – without hesitation. What if you told yourself “who cares what they think”? If you said that to yourself every time you had a “belief-less” (totally not a word so don’t wikipedia it) moment with yourself – think of the possibilities and opportunities that you would open up for you. Think about the possibilities and opportunities for growth. Think about the possibility that you just might find the inner strength you already knew you had. What if you paired possibilities and opportunities with belief? What is the worst that could happen? or better question – what is the best that could happen?