Yesterday, I officially got my arse whipped by Kathryn Budig, a world-renowned yoga teacher who travels the world teaching, inspiring and generally whipping women and men into a place so far deep inside themselves, they’re almost turned inside out.
It was intense, to say the least, especially considering it was 3 hours of backbending and heart opening, and I don’t particularly like backbends or heart openers. In fact, I hate them. Perhaps it has something to do with my heart, chest and shoulders being so tight they feel like they’re full of cement, or maybe it’s a case of what you need more than anything is often the hardest thing to enjoy.
Either way, I endured and embraced and enjoyed this class more than words can actually articulate. You see, Happies, for all you yogies out there, you will know that your heart is where you store your emotions regarding your family, friends and community. It is a sacred place, and one that often conjures up feelings of being vulnerable and exposed when pushed and prodded enough. And, as Kathryn explained, if you’ve ever had your heart broken, backbending and heart opening is the safest way to start to restore it. Much safer than trying to restore it on another human because gosh, we all know where that leads. Rebound, anyone? Clearly, it felt amazing to clear out all this emotional shit, shifting years of stale old emotions that I don’t really care to carry around anymore.
Like any good yoga teacher, Kathryn recognised the importance of sprinkling the true meaning of yoga throughout the practice. It isn’t just about movement, Happies, in fact, the more you practice yoga, the less it becomes about movement and the more it becomes a journey inside yourself. Sounds weird if you’re not there, I know, but just go with it.
Anyhoo, it was these sprinkles of goodness throughout Kathryn’s class that I truly latched onto and want to share with you today. They make sense to anyone, whether you’re a yogi or not, and can be applied to any situation or circumstance in life. And for that, they’re happiness gold.
1. Comparing yourself to others is OK, as long as you remember that you’re awesome too.
We all compare ourselves to other people. It’s human nature and while we try our hardest to not do such things, there are times when it’s going to happen. Don’t stress over it, it’s OK. But here’s something you should most definitely practice – The art of remembering that for every moment that you’re looking at someone wishing you were more like them, there’s someone looking at YOU thinking exactly the same thing.
So, next time you’re wishing you had Kim Kardashian’s money, or the flexibility of the girl next to you, or the face of the chick opposite you, remember that there’s someone wishing they had something of yours and remind yourself that hey, you’re pretty damn awesome, too.
2. It takes time to get good at things. A really long time.
I’ve never been one for patience. My mum always jokes that I was desperate to walk before I could crawl, and the second I could walk, I wanted to run. As a result, I sometimes feel like I need to be good at everything I ever do straight away, and get frustrated with myself if I’m not and move onto the next thing. But as Kathryn reminded me yesterday, it takes a really long time to be good at things. Life is a work in progress and I have to try to care far less about the destination, and far more about the journey.
For example, she said that instead of wanting to master every yoga pose in one year, it’s best to only focus on one or two and put your heart and soul into it. This, of course, can be used in any aspect of life, Happies. If you want to be good at something, or change the course of where you’re heading, focus on that one thing and put every ounce of energy you have into making that dream a reality. It works, I can tell you that.
Even if you’re not a yoga fan, Happies, I’m pretty sure these are two little lessons you can happily take away with you and remember in the moments that you need them. And, if you ever get the opportunity to wake up your senses with a little backbending and heart opening at the same time, all the more power to you.
Tell me Happies…
Do you compare yourself to others?
What about patience? Are you lacking it also?
How do you feel about backbending and heart opening?