I enter and all is quiet amongst the committed yogis here for a morning practice before the stresses of the day take hold. Few words, soft music, in the zone, ready to get on with it, rolling out our mats.
“Come into your first downward facing dog”, we push back into that familiar pose.
“Find your ujjayi breath”, the breath lengthens, evens out, the steadiness and ease sets in as the communal movements align. The practice heats up and the muscles slowly awaken to a few drops of sweat.
A few words about the impact of preferences - “I like this, I don’t like that” on our existence, a reminder of how each small thought or habit in the background of our daily movements compound into states of being that limit our potential.
And on we flow…
I struggle - my body won’t deliver the asanas with the ease it once did. I notice how how that perceived weakness in my asana practice impacts my ego, meanwhile observing how the mental practice is stronger than ever.
My asana practice these past few months has not been as strong as it was late last year. I have plenty of excuses - falling flat on my face on my bicycle and the injury recovery time - the career shift and it’s impact - Christmas holidays - snowboarding trips - etc. but at the end of the day none of that matters because it is in the past and unchangeable.
The only thing that is real is this moment right now and what I do with each breath.
What I can do is wake up early, get out of bed, get on the mat, and flow - because I know that what lies on the other side is a better version of myself. A version of myself that feels fresh and stretched, more present, more able to take the knocks that life will inevitably throw at me today, and keep smiling.
One of the most difficult things in life is showing up.
Doing whatever it is that we do because we believe in it and we are committed to it. We start small, sometimes shaky and nervous, and in time, with repetition, focus, and commitment, through that daily showing up, we can improve and become one of those people that we admire.
Witnessing the evolution of a yoga teacher is one way that I have experienced this. The teacher who I saw demonstrate that commitment by showing up early - even on the many days that I couldn’t get my lazy ass out of bed to come to class - in the grey cold rainy mornings of London winter, on her bicycle, there she was smiling to greet the dreary eyed students.
These great teachers are amongst us - you might spot one in yoga pants, backpack on, cycling across London bright and early, or late into the evening, or smiling amidst the grumpy faces on the tube, eating something delicious pulled from a well packed bag. They work hard for very little pay. They show up, day in and day out, delivering a calm peaceful sanctuary for the many Londoners like me who need it so badly.
One of the many reasons why I love coming to Sangyé is to witness the commitment and grace of it’s teachers. Their love for what they do; the calm dedication and singular focus of the space.
It is clear from the moment you walk in - we are here to practice, to do the work, and to grow.
P.S. I believe that success comes at the intersection of passion and value, and that a strong mind and a clean body are pillars of that success. My goal is to empower entrepreneurs to combine flow state training with adventure sports and yoga as a platform for enhanced performance and creativity in business and in life.