For When You Stumble: Staying Centered With Yoga

office-meditating37026444Yoga helps us remember who we really are, and be centered in that place of connection so we can handle the world around us in a skillful way.

But sometimes you still get thrown off center. Does that mean you’ve failed or faltered on the path of yoga?

Not at all! It’s a chance to strengthen your practice.

The stumbles and falls of life can actually be huge blessings in the path of yoga.

You get another “Aha!” moment every time you repeat this cycle of remembrance, and you can actually deepen the pattern of choosing to see the good, choosing what is life affirming, and generally being more aware of how you can align with your highest self.

For example: maybe you’re at work and you get a phone call or an email that frustrates you. Your heart starts beating faster, you furrow your brow and your breath becomes more shallow. Your mind contracts as it focuses on what rubs you the wrong way, or what problem just occurred.

Well, this is an excellent thing if you take advantage of it. Why? Because you have a chance to reinforce a new pattern, learn from whatever is being given to you in that moment, and totally turn the experience around.

How?

First of all, if you take a deep breath and really look at the situation without judging yourself or the other person – just looking at what is being presented – you might find something you can learn from that will make you a better person. Maybe something they said that you don’t like actually gives you a different perspective on yourself. Then again, maybe it’s just all their stuff and you don’t need to get into it at all.

Either way, it’s a good idea to be open to the fact that there might be some gem of insight hidden in the words or the situation. That’s looking for the good – looking for the beauty. Maybe you can find some redeeming aspect of the other person’s intention. Maybe there’s a huge opportunity that just was created by what happened, even if you can’t see it yet.

Secondly, you want to change the feeling of frustration or fear.

You can do this in many different ways. Here are some ideas:

  • Get up from your desk (or somehow change your environment)
  • Have a stretch
  • Go for a walk and spend that time noticing every bit of beauty that surrounds you
  • Do a 5 (or 15) minute meditation (my Meditation Guide is perfect for this!)

Even just a few deep breaths and a connection to your own highest intention will do.

Just choose something and do it, because it’s up to you to align yourself so you feel good. Grace will always carry you, but you want to flow in the current of goodness consciously, because it’s a whole lot more rewarding and fun!

When you look at this example, you see that there are two basic paths you could take. There’s the autopilot path of discomfort and getting stuck in the frustration, dwelling on what’s gone wrong which will most likely lead to worry, stress, and generally not enjoying yourself a whole lot.

And then there’s the path where you consciously decide to align your perspective and actions in ways that focus on what’s good, what’s possible, and what will bring you a feeling of well being. By choosing the second path, you not only feel better as a person (and therefore influence others around you in a more positive way), but you’re also much more likely to recognize opportunities as they are presented, which could happen at any moment!

Sure, sometimes we forget to be centered in the moment. That’s what makes us human. Because then we have another chance to remember – to recognize again what works and what doesn’t.

  • What do you do to re-center when you’re off? Please leave a comment below and enlighten the rest of us with your approach.
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4 thoughts on “For When You Stumble: Staying Centered With Yoga

  1. hi katrina, well if something knocks me off of my feet, i have to immediately share it and discuss it with my daughters. the 2nd thing that i would do is to go and have a full body massage or a reflexology treatment. 3nd i will pray and then sit down and try to think about the situation looking from the outside to the inside as if it is somebody else’s situation. and then i can try to get some perspective on it.

  2. Jan,

    Thanks so much for leaving a comment. I think your process is great – it involves your family (people you trust and share your life with), relaxing and taking care of yourself, and also being a witness, so to speak, to bring perspective. All excellent things!

  3. I missed you this past week! Hard to believe that it has been 2 years ago since you were here. This time we had a husband, wife and 10 month old for 7 days (and nights). Quite a different experience from the 3 of you last time. I will always have a warm place in my heart with rememberance of the week 2 years ago.

    Dawn

  4. Dawn,

    Oh! Your latest guests must have been just overjoyed by your hospitality. I know I was, and you always have this warm place in my heart too! I think that’s one of the things that is so wonderful about this yoga community – we help each other remember what’s important simply by being friends. Big love, bright light, and lots of gratitude for being part of my life.

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