The sounds of life around you as you practice are not a distraction. Rather, they are a small reminder that yoga is meant to support you as you live your life, not help you escape from it.
Are you feeling burdened by the work of taking care of something or someone else? Yoga teaches us to take care of ourselves so that we're better able to care for the people and things that fill our lives.
It's not selfish to take care of yourself. In fact, a regular self-care practice is not just good for you, it actually makes you better able to take care of others too.
With time and practice, regularly searching our experiences for moments that make us smile can create a happier life. Taking a moment several times a day to reflect on such moments can leave us feeling profoundly grateful – some would even say blessed. Mindfulness like this (no matter the method you choose to treasure it) can dramatically shift our experience of our lives – leaving us feeling hopeful and intentional as we look forward to tomorrow.
Sadly, it is common for people to spend their energy on fitting in. To heck with that! Be brave and determined to walk your own, authentic path through life. You will be amazed at how powerful authenticity feels.
"We inhabit a universe that is characterized by diversity." In other words, rather than the homogeneity that many instinctively seek, diversity is the norm. Imagine if we could look around our world and see the potential in relationships with those who look different than we do, who behave differently than we do, who make different choices than we do. Imagine if we could look beyond any perceived threats to the potential gifts of reaching out to others.
A yoga practice gives you the opportunity to witness your own growth. To observe the forward and backward nature of progress. To notice your innate ability to rebound and recover. The more you witness these qualities, the more you develop your “optimism muscle,” as it were. Practice and it won’t be long at all before you are one of those endearing, magnetic, hopeful and inspiring optimistic people you love to be around.