"Adopt the pace of nature...her secret is patience."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
Flowers blossom beautifully when they are ready.
Patience is being open to each moment and allowing things to unfold in their own time. Practicing patience allows us to let go of expectations and be here now. The physical focus of our practice this month is hip-openers. Cultivating patience is necessary to allow tight, stiff hips to open, soften and relax. Our story; I practice patience.
We live in a world of immediate gratification. We want everything right now! Yet, there is no way we can force flexibility. It takes patience. Impatience increases the possibility of poor decisions and in our yoga practice this can cause injury, and as most of us know impatience in our life causes stress. The physical practice of yoga gives us the opportunity to focus on patience and transfer the wisdom we receive into all aspects of our life.
Here are a few things we might consider as we practice patience.
- Take a moment to check in; connect to the space, the body and the breath. What sensations do you notice? What thoughts do you notice?
- When transitioning from one pose to another, remember that transitions are as important as the poses themselves; stay connected with your body and breath during transitions.
- Become aware of your gaze and try to keep it steady.
- When in the pose find a place of balance between effort and ease.
Yoga helps us cultivate patience in our practice and our lives. When we practice with patient persistence, transformation occurs. It is not about the pose but what we learn about our self while reaching for the pose. Yoga teaches us to be kind to ourselves, to let go of judgement and competition with ourselves and others. Be patient and your life as well as your yoga practice will unfold beautifully, each in their own time.
Here are a couple of hip-opening postures to patiently practice with persistence, enjoy and allow them to unfold in time!
Wide Leg Child's Pose; begin sitting on your heels toes touching, bring the knees wide, inhale and sit tall, exhale and fold forward from the hips extending the arms out in front of you. Stay here for several breaths. To release the pose slowly return to sitting tall.
Pigeon Pose; come on to all 4's. Slide your right knee between your hands. Extend your left left straight back, with the front of the thigh, the knee, the shin, and the top of the foot resting on the floor. If your right hip does not rest on the floor use a pillow or rolled blanket for support. Press down on your hands as you roll the shoulders back and down, lifting the chest and the chin ever so slightly. Stay here for several breaths. Push back into all 4's and repeat on the other side.