I have always been a fitness fanatic and have joined every dance and aerobic class available. Often what has attracted me most has been the loud beat of the music pounding and the excessive movement needed to ensure a full body workout. This was until I discovered a very different mode of exercise.
The 60 Minute Yoga Session
A number of years ago, the prospect of integrating a gentle and at times stagnant routine would have made my anxiety rise. I would have complained that the actions and the movements are too still, too slow and frankly would have made me itch to run out the door.
A while back however, I was experiencing challenging personal and professional issues and I was juggling a tough legal situation. I was finding it difficult to focus on the end result and decision making was becoming difficult. Although I had been a Therapist for many years, I knew I needed to approach my problem from a different angle.
Making a decision to join a yoga course was one of the best decisions I made during this time.
According to a survey conducted by the National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health, only 9.5 percent of adults practice yoga, and there has been an increase from 5.1 percent in 2002.
Yoga is becoming more popular each day and it is not uncommon to observe as a business savvy man or woman sprints out of the office, yoga mat in hand ready for the next installment of this brilliant discipline.
The reality is that stressed out business owners or entrepreneurs run the risk of making bad decisions or settling on wrong choices due to a busy mind. You don’t have to have a bohemian mindset or be deeply into spirituality to reap the benefits, it is simply about settling your mind and body and becoming more connected.
What Are The Top 5 Success Lessons I Learnt From The Yoga Discipline:
1. Ground Yourself Before You Start
Yoga practice commences with your eyes closing, breathing and connecting to your inner core, the outside world is somehow shut down. This ensures that as you commence getting into different yoga positions, you are approaching them from the core with a better intention.
This lesson and discipline was important in ensuring that the decisions I was making were coming from a calm and grounded place. I can’t tell you how chaotic and uncertain life was at the time in my outside world, and this discipline was extremely supportive in keeping my inner world stable and intact.
2. Keep Your Eye On An Object And Focus
When attempting the yoga positions, it is often the case that others around you will be wobbling to keep in balance. If you focus on others in the room, you will also lose your balance and fall. Shut all other distractions and focus on only one object in the room as this will keep you in balance.
This was absolutely key for me, I had to stop getting distracted by all the nonsense, superficialities and the people who were diverting my need to stay firm. This taught me to focus on my end goal and shut the external voices that had the potential to contaminate my decisions.
3. You Are Capable Of Far More Than You Imagine
When I originally started yoga, I feared how far I could take my body as some of the positions were extremely challenging. The biggest surprise was that the more I stretched and pushed my body beyond what I thought I could manage, the more my body would accommodate to this (as long as it wasn’t physically painful).
This was not just a push of my physical but also my emotional comfort zone. The more I thought I was capable of stretching up to a certain point in my body, that point was stretched further each time I attempted it. This encouraged me to reach far more in life than I ever thought I could and push the limits of my capability.
4. Sometimes We Just Need A Slight Tweak For Transformation To Occur
When mastering the yoga postures, there are certain ways you are encouraged to breathe and hold your body. Once you are in position, the yoga instructor might just need to approach you to nudge and tweak certain parts of your body to get you into alignment and into the right position.
There are times in life when you don’t need to make a huge transformation or change, just slight shifts in your thinking or behavior patters can make all the difference in producing tremendous results.
5. Listen To Your Body
The body is an incredible mechanism which embodies a magnificent gift of insights and wisdom nothing else can produce. Listen to your body, if your body is in pain when you are getting into position, then stop immediately.
This is key in yoga and actually in life. Listen to your body communicating if you’re stressed or anxious, or if something just doesn’t feel right. This is a way the body communicates the need to stop. The body is your inbuilt thermometer of life.
As I stated above, the rewards I reaped from these sessions were multiple. Yoga inspired my success in life (and we’re not talking about monetary success), by facilitating my focus, determination and tenacity at a pretty chaotic time.
This meant that all decisions I was making felt right and came from a stress free and effortless mindset. It is simply mind blowing how much you can achieve and how creative you can get when your mind becomes still and relaxed.
As a writer I also suffer from writers block and the yoga discipline helps me to pull through, enhancing my mind with ideas and concepts ready for fruition. In the same way, business owners or entrepreneurs suffer from creative block where they lack the flow of ideas and this is the perfect atmosphere for creativity to rise and ideas to become untangled.
If you yearn for more of this in your life, I highly recommend you try out this discipline which can be traced back 5,000 years. At times we have to reach out for the wisdom of the past to resolve the issues of the future and yoga’s long rich history is proof of this.