Plan for Happiness: Part Two
My First Yoga Experience
As part of my Plan for Happiness series, Mark had suggested I take up yoga because he is a big fan and I have read countless articles and tweets over its benefits. Now lets get one thing straight, I am the most inflexible person you could ever meet. I can’t even touch my toes in the loosest pants but Mark assured me that yoga isn’t about flexibility but the practice of breathing and meditation. I still wore some fancy yoga pants that I usually bum around the house in just in case.
As I mentioned in Part One I bought a Groupon for yoga classes (I highly recommend this since it gives you a chance to try new things but at a discounted price) so I printed them out and headed to class. Upon entering I felt awkward and sheepish like a kid on his or her first day of school since everyone seemed to know what to do and I didn’t. Everyone had these wooden bricks that I had never seen before and I wondering what they were and was I to bring them myself? I didn’t read anything about bricks on the site!? I panicked.
I headed to the back of the mirrored classroom since I did not want the whole group to witness me struggling with basic moves however the teacher was far more observant and noticed me almost instantly. I may say it was fairly humiliating as she corrected me with almost every movement and kept telling me to breath. In the yoga world I don’t even breathe properly! I left the class feeling defeated.
I went to a coffee shop near by and collected my thoughts about the class and dreaded returning. Then while I was wallowing in self-pity this thought occurred to me: “Of course I am going to suck at it! It is my first try!” I laughed to myself and felt instantly better.
I feel almost all of us put a lot of pressure on ourselves to be good or even great at something on the first attempt and we feel discouraged when we aren’t. This attitude is incredibly defeating and I am guilty of it myself. I think accepting the fact that I am going to be perhaps terrible at something on the first go is very liberating.
I went into the second class (after practicing at home with Mark’s assistance) feeling more confident and though I wasn’t great my second time around, I did not dread returning. Yay! Success!
I strongly encourage you to try something you have always wanted to do perhaps a dance class, a cooking class or photography class, walk in with the mantra: “Yes I am going to suck this time but I will get better” running through your head. I tell myself this when trying new things or developing a new recipe because there is a chance I am going to stink at it but it will only get better with some patience, practice and of course the ability to laugh at yourself. Don’t take yourself so seriously and relax, you may even have some fun!
What is the one thing you have wanted to do but too afraid to do it? What are steps you can take to achieving your goal?
P.S. I found this picture on Pinterest (who isn’t addicted to Pinterest?) and laughed much harder than I should have at all the silly names. I can’t remember the Sanskrit names but I will be sure these ones (just in my head I hope!) The picture does have some “provocative” language on it so you have been forewarned (mostly harmless but I have a sailor mouth so it is hard to say).
I personally like the “Smell your Pits” and the “Peww I’m a Rocket Ship”. P.S.S I don’t own this picture, just saw it on Pinterest.