An unintended hiatus from yoga is a common experience; life is busy, schedules are tight and it can be challenging to carve out time to get to the studio. And yet we all know that once we get there and find our flow, it is always worth it.
Here are five ways that will hopefully inspire you to get back on the yoga mat.
1. Make it a priority: when you make your yoga practice a priority you’re actually making yourself a priority. Yoga is basically self care on every single level; it’s an emotional, spiritual and physical practice. Spend some time on the weekend writing a plan for the week and carve out a few hours so you have the time and the space to get to a class.
2. Don’t be fussy: sometimes we stop going to yoga because we’re not enjoying a class, perhaps we don’t connect with a particular teacher or we simply don’t like the ambiance in a studio. Ask yourself whether your past experience is a reflection on the class/teacher/studio or a reaction to how you were feeling at the time. If you’re feeling insecure about attending a new class, remind yourself that trying new things can be wonderful. It may not be the best class you’ve ever been to but then again, it could fast become one of your favourites.
3. Go with a friend: making yourself accountable to someone is a fail-safe way to get back into a good habit. It’s also a great way to blend self care, exercise and a hearty catch-up.
4. Roll out the mat at home: if getting to the studio seems like too hard a task, get on the mat at home. There are a plethora of online classes that can guide you through very specific practices. Set yourself a goal to practice three times a week and do whatever you can to make it happen. If you’re a mum and feeling completely stretched for time, get on the mat regardless of what you’re wearing, how you’re feeling or what the kids are doing. If anything, by rolling out your mat and simply sitting with your eyes closed for a few moments, you are establishing new habits of self care and showing your kids how important it is for you to look after yourself.
5. Delve into a different kind of yoga: sometimes asana practice doesn’t serve us as it should. Remember that yoga is multi-faceted; there’s kirtan, karma yoga (service), pranayama and meditation. Sometimes the first step to establishing new habits is to find inspiration. Read books on others’ yoga experiences, cook some yogic food, visit an ashram or buy a mala and wear it as a constant reminder of where you want to place your energy.