Courage doesn't always roar

Posted Oct 18th, 2014 by Leslianna Federici

So often in life (aka yoga practice) we get in our own way simply by believing in a variety of defeating thoughts about what we can and can’t, should and shouldn’t, will and won’t do. It’s perfectly human and normal to define our experience of life in this way. While it is a strategy for living safely it tends to limit the fullness of our experience of living. I think often of the greatest contributors to our world, these human beings who were willing to live beyond the confining definitions created by their thinking. They are willing to show up again and again exploring the new territory that opens up as a result of them exploring beyond the limits of their thoughts, judgments and opinions.

Personally, I don’t have designs on Noble prizes, my efforts at altering our world tend to stay close to home and my hood (equally as noble!). Yet I find I share a similar yearning to the people so publicly admired for their courage: to live the simple life that I do have to its fullest. That involves pushing my own edges, being willing to expand beyond my comfort zone, giving a go at something and really committing wholeheartedly to the practice of a new skill or experience.

I find as I get older it is all the more important to keep pushing the boundaries that age and society seem to deem important for my safety. On the mat I am faced with a myriad of challenges in the span of a class: staying present, a posture that seems beyond my capability, even the simple challenge of just showing up to practice. Over years of practicing yoga, the most important element I have come to discover is the art of showing up, the practice of practicing. The level of willingness to try arrives simply by getting to the mat. The challenging postures I face on the mat become more accessible as I show up regularly and discover where in my physical, mental and emotional body I am limited, stuck or lacking acceptance and curiosity.

For many of us our yoga practice IS our metaphor for life; the fortitude, commitment and courage we begin to cultivate just by showing up and demonstrating a willingness to try grows over time and weaves its way into all of our adventures. Eventually, we find ourselves contorted in ways we never thought possible, flying beyond our wildest dreams and befriending ourselves in a most playful way.

Leslianna teaches Thursday's 6:15pm Heated Flow and Friday TGIF@TNY 5:15pm. Join her for her 3 part workshop on arm balancing Learning to FLY: Breath, Bandhas and Buoyancy. Monday November 3rd, 12th & 17th $55, must pre-register. ENROLL NOW

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