Borrowing from that famous milk campaign, I decided to take my practice of yoga to a higher level. I’m not a milk fan at all…sorry, cows. Or maybe they’re thanking me, I don’t know. I do love yoga, though. I love how how I feel when I do a certain pose, how my body feels when it’s being stretched, how long I feel when my limbs are reaching out to that imaginary goal in my head (I’m five feet tall so this always makes me giggle). But I have a confession…my practice of yoga is quite sporadic.
3-5 times a week always, either in my bedroom or downstairs in the living room. I do 20 minutes to an hour of yoga, depending on that particular day’s schedule. Sometimes I do it right after I do my regular workout, at night before I go to bed, sometimes between loads of laundry. I’ll follow along to one of the many DVDs I have, an iPhone app, or I’ll create a routine in my head depending on what I feel I need that day. Yes, 3-5 times a week I will do yoga and I enjoy it immensely. But I’m starting to not like how it’s sort of become a filler for my day.
So that leads me to the promise I recently made to myself. For the remainder of the kids’ school year (why oh why must I make timetables? subject for another day…) I’ve promised that every MORNING after I have dropped the kiddos off at school, I will come home and do my yoga. Before my morning coffee, before taking care of the daily cleaning, any appointments are to be scheduled for after, no emails will be checked, no reading will be done…well, you get the idea. After the children are off to school (or sleeping in for those school holidays) I will be about ME before I begin the day.
So what led to this promise? Well, truthfully it’s been bugging me quite a bit lately. As I said before, I love how I feel when I do my yoga and make sure to fit it into my week, but I hated that I didn’t really take the time to make a real routine of it. 3-5 times a week when I could “fit it in”? Yuck! One might think that I have lots of me time throughout the day but sadly that’s not the case. While I AM technically alone, most of my day revolves around my family. Either actively doing something with or for them, I wouldn’t have it any other way. But come on, you all know we need to take some “sanity moments” that are strictly for ourselves. I spend two hours driving everyday and even that time is spent taking care of phone calls or having my mind preoccupied with planning out the day, week, or catching up with the kids’ day afterschool. So my me time, scheduled me time that is, will have to be my daily yoga. When I am forced to shut out everything and just be for that moment.
I was listening to Sadie Nardini the other day on a podcast (I was paying the bills and needing some background noise, always the multitasker) and she made a fantastic point. That oftentimes we do things (in this case yoga but it can apply to lots of physical activities) mainly for what they do for our bodies. But we forget that we should also do them for our minds, mental clarity, etc. How many times have we heard someone say they take their aggressions out at the gym? Whether it be punching that punching bag a little harder or kicking that exercise routine up a notch, it’s almost therapeutic. So if I like how my body feels after doing yoga, why can’t I also use that time to calm my mind and collect myself before the day begins?
So here I am, making a promise to myself. I really hate that I feel I must announce it, but truthfully I’m one of those people that needs others to force me to stay on track. Not for most things, but for me moments…yeah. Every morning before my day begins it’s yoga time. Wait…I said before my coffee, right? Ugh, what was I thinking?