Yoga and Philosophy

To Balance by Reaching Higher

Yoga isn't about reaching for perfection, but reaching for where you want to be by knowing and accepting where you are.
#yoga : )
source: pin from fierceinterrupted.tumblr.com

I saw this in a pin a long time ago, well before I had my own yoga room. Since then I moved it to a subboard that has all my favorite quotes about yoga from the overall board of Quotes I Love. I had collected them when I was debating what to put on my accent wall in the yoga room. There are a few truly inspirational quotes, like the one that is actually on my wall, and quite a few funny ones, such “I do yoga to burn off the crazy.” While true, that one doesn’t make for a helpful saying to have in front of me for getting up out of savasana or trying to meditate in that room.

The above pin/saying has become a bit of a mantra at times, and not just on the mat. The problem with focusing on balance, like when we focus on a lot of things, is that sometimes the focus itself will mess us up. If I’m thinking of my balance, I’m probably falling. When I’m looking up and trying to put all of my concentration into the speck on the wall that is my focus point, I can also straighten my standing leg, lengthen my spine and reach with my hands to the sky which ultimately steadies me.

For example, If I’m just having one of those days when I’m not flexible enough to get my leg straight on a standing hand-to-big-toe, two things need to happen. The first one is to accept that is just not where I am today. The second to find a focal point on the wall, straighten the standing leg, and reach toward the sky with the free hand. Looking at and getting frustrated with the leg in my hand doesn’t actually help me do anything except maybe fall a little faster on that side. If I’m focusing on the problem, then I’m not really able to fix it. Instead, I focus on the overall goal and control the things I can control.

In other parts of my life, balance is just as important and it’s always yoga that reminds of the ways to do it. Focusing on the higher goal of anything I’m doing helps me remember the importance of the task at hand. I need that, especially in my workplace these days. I’m one of the first women in my area and I’m not just working for today. I have to always remember that I’m making a path for the women who come after me. Though I typically take pride in being thought of as the go-to person for whatever it is that I’m doing, I won’t be doing this kind of work much longer. The point is no longer for me to excel but to make sure that everyone knows that they can succeed and to get out of the vocabulary the things we throw at women to hold us back.

Well, before I go on the feminist rant that this could surely turn into, let me return to the point. It’s yoga and trying to balance in a pose that reminds that finding balance isn’t something that you can do while not trying to fall. Reach higher and focus on something else.

Below is my pinboard with some more quotes I love. Other options for the yoga room are mixed in here too. I was never one of those workout people until yoga. It reminds me every day of all the things I need to stay in the fight, to keep moving forward.

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