Let Go of the Ego & Go into Child’s Pose

You know how, in some yoga classes, the instructor tells the class to simply go into child’s pose, if they’re feeling overworked or overwhelmed?

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Well, sometimes it really is OK just to take a break and go into child’s pose.

Confession: For the past three weeks I’ve been seeing a chiropractor for my back. Remember back in May and June when I was practicing power yoga like 4 x’s a week, like a damn fiend? Well, yeah, that ultimately lead to aggravating an old injury. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing.

At the time, I thought it was just burn out and a little ache from over doing it. But since I’m an all or nothing person, I stopped going. For months. So when I finally I started practicing yoga again in December, I knew something was up when I felt pain in my back upon my first upward facing dog. Womp womp.

It’s starting to feel better, but I couldn’t help but feel so bummed that the week that I’m in Santa Monica – the yoga mecca -  I can’t go into wheel, camel pose, and deep back bends, let alone something as simple as upward dog – a yoga pose that scares me, and with good reason!

I could just pout and be mad at reality. Or I could just say screw it, and muster through the pain and further my injury even more. Or I could decide to not go to any yoga classes at all. OR. Or, I could go to a class, and actually take the break of going into child’s pose during any back bending postures.

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And that’s what I did. Any time the class went into any sort of back extension sequence, I took child’s pose. When everyone else was in upward dog, I was in a gentle cobra. And even though I didn’t experience the heart-opener of camel or wheel, I did get to experience a hip openers, a clear mind, a new class, in a new setting, with a new instructor, with new experiences.

Sometimes it’s OK to take the breaks offered in life.image

Too often, we get caught up in going and doing; achieving and driving forward; succeeding and moving up, that we forget to just breathe and be ourselves…or at least I do. It’s very easy  to get caught up in work – or anything in life, really, and turn it into work. We don’t have to be the best at everything we do. Not everything in life is a competition. Sometimes life just is what it is, and we can’t fight with that. It can be freeing to accept our weaknesses for what they are.

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I’ve been trying to do that lately –  not fighting reality by going into child’s pose, per say, in life. That doesn’t mean I won’t work to achieve my dreams, work on bettering myself, or enhancing my life. It just means I’m accepting life as it is right now. I might not be making any sense right now, so let me give you an example: the other day when I was teaching a class, I made a big mistake and accidentally broke a piece of pretty expensive equipment. Instead of making myself suffer by stomping around, replaying it,  and wishing it wouldn’t have happened, I told myself that there’s no sense in doing that, because it did happen. I paid for the equipment, and moved on with my day. I took child’s pose and gave myself a break.

Because hey, life’s really about experiencing the joy in it, right?

 

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Even if it might be a little wobbly from time to time Winking smile

And before I sign off here to head to the beach, I wanted to say a little bit about what made me start back up yoga again in December – a new mat! You know how sometimes new workout clothes make you want to work out? Same goes for a brand new pretty pink mat.

-the yoga mat in the pictures above is from Aspen Yoga Mats, which are made locally in Aspen, Colorado! The founder, Wendy, let me try one out, and I love it! I’m tall – nearly 5’10 – and it’s plenty long for when I’m sprawled out in shavasana. The aspen leaf, native to CO, is at the head of the mat, which symbolizes determination, strength, community, and life. While the mat is pink, the leaf is purple, whose two colors combined promote balance. Pink embodies compassion, nurturing, and love, while purple is imaginative and spiritual.

Do you have a hard time “going into child’s pose” in life?

What’s your biggest challenge with yoga?

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Comments

  1. Great post! I’ve been struggling with my ego during Yoga (and all my workouts!) recently. Newly pregnant, my Yoga posture repertoire is suddenly much more limited than it normally is. I’m avoiding twists, deep backbends, and anything that puts a lot of weight on the tummy. I’ve been getting creative in finding my own poses when the class resumes one of these, but I find myself worrying that other students think I’m “just slacking.” Silly, huh?
    Katie H. recently posted..The DetailsMy Profile

  2. Good job embracing the shades of gray and ditching the all or nothing mentality. That mentality gets us into a lot of lousy places in life :) I’m a pilates instructor and I say many times every class that they can take a break, go to child’s pose, or modify to their needs, but people really do have a hard time with comparison and competition with those around them.
    Caroline @ Fighting For Wellness recently posted..Thankful ThursdayMy Profile

  3. It’s such a great reminder to be kind to ourselves! To take that moment, accept it for what it is and give ourselves a break. Love it!
    Not sure how long you’re in Santa Monica but I HIGHLY recommend finding a class with Gigi Yogini. She was my favorite yoga instructor when I was living there and such a kind spirit!
    Katie @ Talk Less, Say More recently posted..Setting A Goal – YogaMy Profile

  4. I love this reminder – I needed it right now. I’ve been struggling with “settling down” lately. I just moved to a new city, and since I’m a teacher, I couldn’t start a regular job in January. Luckily, I got a job as a substitute teacher right away, but that means I don’t always get to work every day (and I make a lot less than I did teaching…). For the past month I’ve been beating myself up about not having a “real” job when maybe I should just enjoy the fact that I have some extra time on my hands to enjoy life :-)

  5. I SO needed this reminder. I have such a hard time with just letting things go and relaxing. Thank you!!
    Brittany @ Delights and Delectables recently posted..Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin Seed Butter- “Baby Delight Butter”My Profile

  6. My biggest challenge in yoga is back-related as well. Now that I see a chiropractor and found out that I have arthritis a couple of weeks ago, I’m more mindful of trying certain poses that cause me pain (even cobra is one of them). I do love some good hip openers though!
    Courtney @ Don’t Blink. Just Run. recently posted..Diet S.O.S.My Profile

  7. I’m ultra competitive and that even went into yoga! Nowadays, I’ve learned that my legs are a little short which does wonders for balance poses because they’re short but strong and that there are some things my body just can’t do… like eagle pose legs. I’m glad for the things I can do and working on the ones I can’t. I’m pretty happy with my yoga practice now though I do get scared doing inversions – I need a wall because once I fell out of a pose and rolled on my neck. Fortunately, I was okay!
    Julie recently posted..Thinking Out Loud Thursday: Currently: FebruaryMy Profile

  8. that’s truly when i learn the most.. when i let go and fall. Ya know? similar with life, indeed.
    lindsay recently posted..Grain Free Chocolate Coconut Chia BreadMy Profile

  9. I do have a problem with not taking a step back to just breathe. I am all about going, going, going and doing, doing, doing. I stress myself out and get so overwhelmed. I need to incorporate more “child poses” into my life.

    I am not that flexible, so most moves are a challenge for me. I’ll be working on it soon, I hope!
    Natalie Staeckeler recently posted..Thinking Out Loud #5 – I’ve Got The Power!My Profile

  10. This is such a great post and reminder Paige. I think that one of the hardest things to do in yoga class (and life) is to give yourself the space and freedom to go into child’s pose. But we all need that sense of grounding from time to time and we all need to let go of the things that we can’t control.
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..Glitter and GlueMy Profile

  11. I LOOOOVE child’s pose, and don’t hesitate to get into it if I’m feeling overwhelmed. But, ya know what? Definitely haven’t figured out how to “go into child’s pose,” as you say, in real life :-/ Great post!
    Lex @ Flecks of Lex recently posted..So, I Want to Start Swimming for Real. How Do I Do it?My Profile

  12. a long-enough-for-us yoga mat?!! must have!

    beautiful post – i’ve been going to yoga recently too and love how lessons learned on the mat transfer so nicely to life, too. child’s pose for everyone!

Trackbacks

  1. […] Let go of the ego & go into child’s pose When you’re in yoga class, how many of you actually listen to the teacher and actually take child’s pose when you need to rest or you feel overwhelmed? I’m guessing that it’s not many of you. I know that I have a hard time allowing myself the space (and compassion) to take the pose, to let go of expectations, to just let go in general. […]

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