Yoga practice must be personal because our individual experience of yoga is personal— it varies for each of us and we each emphasize different things to access the state of yoga. As the ancient text, the Vedas, tell us, “The truth is One, the paths are many.” While each of us strives to connect to the One, the road we take is ultimately our own.
We begin by creating the time and space for practice. The next chapter touches on how to create your space, so let’s talk about time. Many people say they don’t have time in their day to practice yoga. I would counter this with one thought: For yogis, we don’t have the time not to practice our yoga. Sadhana clears our mind, reduces stress, helps us to reset our priorities, not sweat the small stuff, and allows negativity to fall away more easily. If our perspective on life was clearer and more level-headed, wouldn’t that free up time that we normally worry, stress, or overwork?
Trust me, it does.
In the early days of my practice, I received this advice: Tadasana is better than email. When we commit to our practice, it becomes difficult to remember how we navigated life without establishing first our daily connection to ourselves.
We want our practice to be effortless, natural and without guilt. Similar to brushing our teeth. The buildup of plaque from the night before means that we brush our teeth in the morning. We don’t worry about how to find the time to do it. We don’t put it off until the end of the day, when it’s too late. And, we don’t spend 90 minutes obsessing over our oral hygiene and our perfect sparkly teeth. We just brush our teeth, knowing that it’s an integral part of how we set ourselves up for our day.
Sadhana looks more like this. It doesn’t need to be that time-consuming. And it consists of the things necessary for us to “plug in” to ourselves in the morning so we optimize the way we show up for the rest of our day.