I started yoga without a clue of the consequences. Before yoga, I was used to the intense conditioning required in martial arts. It physically strengthened my core and it was an awesome feeling to have earned a black belt. But, it didn’t prepare me for a tornado of dark emotions that come with a shattering break-up. My heart wasn’t just on pause; it froze.
I had wanted to force out negative feelings any way I could. Up to this point, my training taught me how to use force. But, I was sensitive and vulnerable, and force was the last thing I was looking for. Force doesn’t heal a broken heart. Interestingly, I started yoga as a way to get of the house and try something new. I didn’t know that it would help me deal with the break-up and associated feelings of anger, frustration, failure, and heartache. What I’ve found through yoga is a possibility for openness, and even love.
Yoga not only helps me to unite my body with my mind and heart, it helps me to open up – period. I often set an intention of openness at the start of a class, and I allow my body to breathe into that state of space. As I twist to raise my chest to the sky, my heart follows, for all parts of me are connected. It may be a physical representation of openness now, but it has to start somewhere.
Yoga teaches me that each moment is fleeting. I can feel it move in and out and through my body – all through a single breath. I approach my yoga practice as hundreds of opportunities to start over. Whatever I felt going into class, I can leave it on the mat if it does me no good. I can keep it if it contributes to my well-being. I do not have to carry around stale feelings of regret or failure. Those moments have passed, and I can breathe in fresh air.
Through my yoga practice, I am picking up the sore pieces and lovingly putting them back together. Practicing alongside others who follow a similar path of patience and openness help me as well. Being a part of something bigger than myself – an energy that connects all of us together – is a powerful source of healing.
Follow Kristen on her blog Simple Heart, Open Mind www.simpleheartopenmind.com
About the author:
Kristen was hooked on yoga after her first class, six months ago. Inspired by goodness and beauty in all people everywhere, she enjoys sharing positivity with others. In addition to yoga, she cannot live without coffee, films, books, hot peppers, music and some dancing. She lives in Washington, D.C.