Reflections from the Yoga Mat: Leaving the comfort zone

Apr 22, 2021


Reflections from the Yoga Mat: Leaving the comfort zone

Has it ever happened to you when trying a new Yoga sequence/new instructor/ new exercise and your first reaction is rejection, resistance, or frustration? Our brain is wired in a way in which it’s always looking to protect us from disappointment and rejection; and that sometimes leads us to stay in the comfort zone.

So, let me share a little bit more about this with a personal example. I go to Hot Yoga and Yin Yoga classes every day. My instructors are always the same, the sequences and postures are pretty much the same. This might sound boring, but it’s actually comforting to practice the same sequence when my outside life is changing a lot nowadays. Anyways, the other day I had this new instructor, who did everything so differently, from the opening to the end. I found myself being upset and wanted to leave the room, but this is when Yoga practice is to be applied.

Yoga is not all about postures. Actually from the 8 limbs of Yoga, only one focuses on the asana (posture). Yoga is a way of living. So, here I was, I started to practice what I preach and started to breathe even deeper, to stay even more focused, and pop up the question: why am I resisting this change so much? Can I create my inner peace, right here, right now? Can I make this the best class I ever had so far? To my surprise, after many breathing cycles, I started to let the judgments go, then I was so immersed in the present moment and focused on what my body was doing that suddenly we reached savasana (the last posture).  I felt bliss, peace, and contentment at the end of the class because I was able to support myself and hold myself while going through the uncomfortable moment, and the best part is that my body was able to really let go of a lot in that class. 

During my last meditation in that savasana, it hit me, I’ve been so scared after my TIA that I wanted consistency and nothing to change around my environment. That is impossible obviously, but in a sense, I guess I lost my sense of faith in changes.  In doing so, I was avoiding transformation.  So this is my invitation for you to explore in your next meditation or when journaling,

·         How are you stepping and blocking your own way?

·         In what ways are you avoiding transformation?

·         How can you feel grounded and trust in your inner power, inner peace, and inner strength to overcome whatever life throws at you? What practices do you need to incorporate in order to practice these inner qualities?

·         Are you avoiding something new just because of your judgments, assumptions, or previous experiences? For example, have you been avoiding Yoga just because you tried it once and you didn’t like it?

·         There is no future without present so ask yourself what are you doing or not doing today to enjoy the day as it is.

~Coach Alba Porras, BAKIN, 200 E-RYT, YACEP.