Frequency vs. Variety

Given I’m a full-time yoga teacher, I’m often asked by my yoga students “how often do you practice yoga?”  Sure I practice 5-6 days a week, which I know is a privilege.  Though it recently occurred to me the frequency/discipline of getting on my yoga mat regularly isn’t the only thing that matters.  The variety of learning from different teachers and playing with other yoga styles is what really will challenge and advance me.  In addition, the intention I bring to my practice is just as important as variety if not more so.

For four years, I’ve religiously gone to the same studio in D.C. and practiced with some of the best teachers in the area.  It’s been a convenient option and offered me a lot of growth during that time.  More recently, I realized the easy option isn’t the best option for me anymore.  In some ways my growth has been stunted.

Solution to my problem…I’ve challenged myself for almost two weeks not to go into my “home away from home” studio.  I’ve forced myself to explore other places and teachers.  I’ve spent more time in my home yoga space, learning from myself  —we are our own best teachers.  Throughout the last couple weeks my intention was to simply remain open to what ever came up.

As hard as this was at first, I realized that going to the same place everyday to practice (frequency) kind gave me “tunnel-vision”.  The discipline in mixing things up is giving me new strength and confidence —in my personal practice as well as my teaching —and a few “ah-ha” moments in my overall life.  Though I struggled with the change at first, it was one of the healthiest decisions/changes I’ve made for myself in a long time.

Lessons I was reminded over the last two weeks:  1) Easy is not always the best option.  2) If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got.  3) Variety is the spice of life!

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One response to this post.

  1. I love this post. It is so easy and comfortable to be in a routine. I think this is true even for the classes I teach. If I change things up a bit I can literally see the angst that it causes them. And, I don’t necessarily think that is a bad thing. Learning to be open and mindful in any situation is the gift that yoga gives us.

    Thank you for this post.

    Reply

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