May 9, 2012 Couch-asana
After the amazing, exhausting weekend of yoga, coming back to the real world (aka state testing/middle school spring fever) has been a bit of an adjustment. After all the glorious heart-opening and back bending on Sunday, I was blissed-out and ready to spread my joy with the world.
Then Monday materializes:
my back- oh so achy
students- tired of testing, hormones raging, attitudes flaring
my mental/emotional/physical state- 4 hours of sleep, allergies in full force, iced venti hazelnut soy latte in hand, followed by a major crash
Thankfully, I made it through the day and came home to my couch and a good book. I’ve been pretty consistent with my yoga practice, and I had every intention of keeping my disciplined routine going. That is, until I brewed some kava tea and melted into the couch. I realized how exhausted I truly was, and of course began to go through my usual mental pattern of wanting to blow something off, feeling guilty, rationalizing…. rinse & repeat.
I have always struggled to find a healthy balance. I’m a very all-or-nothing type of person in most aspects of my life. There is a side of me that is incredibly organized, disciplined, punctual and motivated. I’m a compulsive list-maker. I’m almost always early or on time.
There is also a side of me that completely abhors responsibility, rules, structure, and that is basically a wild thing.
What usually happens to me is that I will be very regimented and then I reach a breaking point and go let my wild thing take over until I exhaust myself and feel awful about shirking my responsibilities (not eating well, sleeping or giving my body and mind the nourishment that it needs). It’s like a see-saw of stoicism and epicureanism.
I’m learning to balance these two aspects of myself. I’m not completely one or the other. These two elements must find a way to peacefully coexist.
So on this Monday, I decided to have some compassion for myself. I rested, relaxed and indulged a little. I decided not to feel guilty. I did a few couch-asanas, just stretching in ways that my body craved. When I painted my toes I held navasana (above) and strengthened my abdominal muscles. I felt accomplished in that I was allowing myself to do what my body and mind craved, without letting myself spiral out of control. Little indulgences here and there.