This past year in New York, yoga has become a real pal.
I’ve been doing yoga for years now, moving in and out of it since college. It was always something that was around, never quite ballet but always more enjoyable than running or spinning. I couldn’t tell you what kept bringing me back through the finals, different addresses, and varying relationship statuses. But this year, yoga went from being a silent backseat passenger to being a calm and present copilot.
It’s no big secret that I naturally interact with change the same way my dad interacts with shows on Netflix — cautiously and suspiciously until proven otherwise. In two weeks, I packed up the cats and a few boxes and was greeted New Years Day 2015 by an entirely new life. After nearly crying in a barbershop my first day of work, I sought out a yoga studio down the street from my apartment. I saw yoga as the quiet place I needed to regain stability in this city that prided itself on loudness and intimidation.
Over the last 12 months, yoga and I have developed a deep friendship. I can’t articulately explain why I suddenly wanted to spend five nights a week on my mat (I named my mat Alfred after the character in “Batman”) but my calendar quickly filled up with workshops and classes. I completed a month yoga challenge and began to see muscle definition. My teachers learned my name and I learned how to balance. In a few months, my goal of being able to hold crow pose finally became possible. Then it was the challenge of doing half moon. Now it’s handstands.
In a year, yoga has given me new confidence in my body and a safe space to breathe. It’s taught me to approach life with presence and understanding, and to deal with stress in a new and healthier way. My mat has seen me through heartaches, mistakes, and each day, sends me home with a bit of patience that accompanies me to work on the subway and holds my hand when I’m under deadline.
This year, I really loaded up on the resolutions. Thank my new Passion Planner for that. This year, I want to Reflect. Capital R. Last year was a whirlwind of sleep deprivation, a boom in articles, and an influx of yoga classes. Also a lot of donuts. So this year, I want to reflect on my yoga practice (and all other aspects of life). Why does it resonate? What intention can I set in this specific class? What does my body actually need today? How can I apply what I’ve learned in yoga into my outside life? Am I breathing?
This resolution goes hand-in-hand with my other goal: Do more yoga. I’m hoping to take teacher training in 2017 and in preparation, would like to take this year to really indulge in different styles and teachers around New York City. From there, who knows? But I’m sure unlimited sun salutations and cat cartoon yoga pants will be involved in some way.