UnRule #1 - Give Five (4:15 audio)
Un-Rule #1: Give Five
The first step into Yoga Wonderland, is also the hardest step. Just practice. It sounds so simple. Yet, it’s so dang hard to do. For me, when I finally committed to practice without a teacher, my ego dropped on the floor with a thud and I found I had shrunk like a telescope to a size that will fit through that tiny door.
Practice at home and practice in classes are two entirely different creatures. If I expected to get out of practice at home what I got out of practice in classes, nothing at home worked or felt right. The energy at home is entirely different than at a yoga studio. At a studio my practice is follow-the leader, surrender-to-the-teacher, and play-off-the-energies-of-the-other-students. Alone, my practice is be-my-own-boss, listen-to-myself, and build-my-own-energy-inside-myself.
In my experience, a studio practice was a workout, carefully crafted long sequence designed to work every muscle, joint, tissue, and organ, taking into account the rise to a peak pose, a surrender to a deep pose, and so much more. When I tried listening to podcasts or watching video streamed classes, I found myself having these full-on angry dialogues with the teachers (even if the voice out of the podcast was my own - I do have over 300 yoga podcasts). I don’t want to do that pose now. Dang, that’s a stupid thing to say. Would you just stop rambling already? Slow down, I wasn’t ready to get to that cue just yet! After awhile, I found myself turning off or tuning out the podcast and doing my own thing. That’s when the practice became fun. That’s when I entered wonderland. So for awhile, I tricked myself into getting into wonderland by starting practice by following the hologram of a white rabbit in a podcast, and then ignoring the hologram entirely so I could go into Yoga Wonderland.
In time, I realized that applying my studio practices and teaching experience to my home practice was a massive motivation killer, and kept me hopping around the yoga rabbit holes, never bringing me to the real Yoga Wonderland. I needed a way to be motivated to practice without the white rabbits, without the holograms. In order to do that, I had to drop my prior conceptions of practice. That’s when I made up my Rule of Fives.
I only have to get on the mat for 5-minutes. Any more than 5-minutes is bonus. If I hit 5-minutes, I can count this as a practice.
(Pretty much always, I want to stay longer than 5 minutes.)
If I do a total of 5 poses, I’ve succeeded. It doesn’t matter which 5 poses, or the order in which I do them, I just need to do FIVE.
(I usually start with child’s pose, and I usually do more than five.)
I hold each pose for at least 5-breaths before I can call it complete. The longer and slower and deeper and more even the breaths, the better.
(5-breaths is usually 30-seconds, and I usually hold longer.)
5-Days a Week
I give myself two days to skip, because well, stuff happens. Besides, even God rested once a week. Yet, 5-days is still most days.
(I noticed, the day after a skip day is usually AWESOME!)
If I get as far as 5-minutes, 5-poses, 5-breaths, or 5-days I consider myself solid. If I do more than FIVE of any or all of these, BONUS! (and guess what? I am BONUS-ING all the time!)
By signing up for this program, you are committing to the Rule of FIVE. Please comment below with your affirmation of your commitment to 5-minutes, 5-poses, 5-breaths, 5 days a week.