Sometimes we need to challenge ourselves in new ways. In fact, I believe we need to constantly be doing this. Even after moving to a new country, and living in three different apartments in the span of a few months (I was house and dog sitting in between) and getting worn out from all the changes, I still felt a little stagnant once things just began to get settled.
Some might call this restlessness, except I have experienced restlessness and there was a different quality to my motions of life this time. This was just it – I was simply going through the motions. Everything was getting set up, the way it was sort of planned, and I was trying out a new scene – new country, two new jobs, new social network, new apartment, even a new language. I didn’t think I needed to add anything else to the mix, right?
Well, after finally feeling in a comfortable position with the Sivananda studio – I knew the timetables, the teachers, how the studio operates and what to expect – something compelled me to start an Ashtanga practice. This meant working entirely within a different lineage, different sequence, and a different studio. Yet I had been asking to find a teacher for a good year at this stage, without any luck, and something changed, amongst all the changes, that told me it was time.
It’s as if all these changes going on were doing a sweeping of the unnecessary dust in my routines, people and goals in my life to help me see what I really needed. Just like the practice of yoga helps us physically, mentally and emotionally purify whatever we don’t need in our bodies any longer. These are the aspects that are no longer serving us. And even though my teachers, and the teachings, at the Sivananda studio are so valuable and amazing in themselves, it was time, amongst the movement of all this stagnant energy, to fill up this newfound space with something, well, new.
Now I am spending about 2 hours a day either in the studio or doing a home practice, with an hour total travel time to the Ashtanga shala in the heart of my new city. It’s completely worth it. It’s become the stability I craved in a life of changing circumstances, some out of my control, and yet each day provides an opportunity for a new and exciting challenge.