I love trees and visit ‘my’ tree as often as I can during the week. She grounds me, charges me and provides me with self-love inspiration. Sitting under her arms, brings me all I need plus a big dose of creative juice. I also seldom resist the urge to add tree pose to my time on my mat, as it is one of my favourites.
On the flip side, there is a particular yoga pose that I am really struggling to love and perhaps even to like. I find it extremely challenging at the best of times. As we all know, life has ups and downs with moments of balance, a rather yin yang approach to life. Yet when life gives us challenges to deal with, we don’t stop flowing. We live through them and experience moments of happiness, joy and love, but also feelings of sadness, grief and fear; and a myriad more. Similarly on my mat, I need to work with some of the harder poses in order to continue growing my practice (and myself). Enter the chair pose.
Breathe in and out. Sit down into chair. And sink in deeper.
This one I find hard, difficult, challenging and oh so painful on my thighs! I continue to struggle to like this pose, but I have started to change my viewpoint and look at it from a different angle, even though my thighs complain loudly.
I have learnt that despite obstacles, I am physically stronger than I think I am. Even though I am uncomfortable in the pose, and did I say that I really don’t like it , it teaches me patience with the pose, myself and adds value. I am strengthening a variety of muscles, including my thighs (which I trust will support my sporadic hip pain). It helps me to overcome my aversion to doing the things I dislike, because with time it actually gets easier. Let’s face it, we all have things we dislike doing, yet sometimes life needs us to face them and just do it. So facing up to chair pose, helps me to remember to face up to the other things I really don’t enjoy. I have to come back to my breath and breathe deeply, especially when the going gets tough. Precisely then, it is more important to breathe. Lastly, I now know, yes through trial and error as well as the gentle support of my yoga teacher and soulsister C., that I can almost always sink into chair deeper. Sounds like it is going to hurt, doesn’t it? However, it isn’t, as by going that little bit deeper, it actually eases up.
That is the key in life as well. As we sink in deeper to all of our now moments, whether we may like or dislike them, they begin to ease up in ways we never anticipated.
Want to give chair pose a try? I challenge you to see how it feels for you and do remember that not everyone feels as strongly about it as I do. (Please be kind to yourself and only do what your body allows you to do and what feels comfortable to you and your body. Do not push yourself, this is about gentle self-care.)
Breathe. Sit. And sink.
How do you sink in deeper when you have something challenging to do? I love hearing your thoughts!
with love, Delicia