Lessons from yoga: being uncomfortable

Last night I went to an inspiring yoga class at Sangha Yoga Shala studio. I’ve just finished a week trial at Sangha Shala during which I took three different classes and loved them all. The thing I was most impressed with was the personal touch: each of the teachers knew my name, even if I hadn’t told them, and they helped me with headstands and gave me praise when I did something well. The classes were small, between 3 – 10 people, which helped to make me feel welcome and encouraged me to try and improve. Personalization is something that we all relate to whether it’s in a yoga class, at work or when you’re on the phone with Apple resolving a customer service issue. We want to be recognized as an individual and get support that is tailored to us, to our personality or physical strength.

Being in a small class also means that the teacher is more aware of your actions and can see when you’re struggling or in discomfort. And while in a difficult stretch last night, the teacher mentioned that yoga is about getting used to being uncomfortable. I think that’s a good life lesson. We should learn to accept and overcome discomfort in order to achieve our goals, using our mind to conquer physical pain. To excel at sport you must be mentally prepared and when taking part in tough intellectual feats, you need a healthy body to sustain energy and develop ideas. Discomfort is a daily part of life whether you are at the dentist, at the beautician getting waxed, or working late on a tight deadline. Sometimes life is uncomfortable and we need to accept that fact and carry on.

On the topic of body and mind connecting, I love the ASICS ad slogan: Anima Sana In Corpore Sano (a healthy mind in a healthy body). The video makes me want to run across bridges and lakes.

And lastly, at the end of the yoga class last night I tried flying. Almost like this…

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