My sister persuaded me to go to yoga with her recently and I have to admit that I was a bit sceptical at first. My mother had forced me to go with her when I was sixteen and quite frankly, I hated every minute of it especially the chanting and the hot room. I was surprised how much I enjoyed it this time around, although it was still very hot, there was no chanting and there have only been good things since.. These are the five things that yoga has taught me…

One: Setting an intention at the beginning of each task will always ensure that beautiful feeling of accomplishment when you are done. You set an intention for the class before you start each lesson and this helps you focus throughout. Setting intentions for yourself is amazing in building self confidence.

Two: No matter what life throws at you, never forget to breathe. You may be stuck in tough situations throughout your life but if you breathe first and follow through with action second, you are more likely to act with conviction and maturity. There are many uncomfortable positions in life and breathing helps us get through them as well as let go of them.

Three: Patience is the hardest lesson but the most fulfilling. You start off clumsy and you are not able to pull off that perfect “crows pose”. After ten lessons you start to realize that the perfect pose will come with time and soon after that you enjoy the journey instead of striving for the end result. Yoga has taught me that come the next day, you can always try again.

Four: Focus on yourself and not on others. Instead of comparing yourself to others and what they can do with their body, you learn to focus solely on yourself and to align your own body into poses. You learn that although your neighbour may be very good at breathing, it is your own breathing that is going to get you through this lesson, so work on perfecting yourself. This can be used in life too, focusing on yourself will teach you how to let go of the petty things and focus on where you need to be spiritually instead.

Five: Love. Love yourself and love the person who brings you along to yoga lessons. There is a big gift in the practice of yoga. It teaches you so much self control, self love and self confidence. I love my sister deeply for taking me, because I have so much more drive and focus than ever before. I love my practice because it has calmed my spirit and focused my soul. I love my peers because they don’t care that I am sweating, huffing and puffing next to them, they just hope I get the next pose for myself more than anything else.

The practice of yoga has taught me many things and I am sure it will teach me many more things along the way. It becomes a lifestyle change instead of a fitness change. The only thing I could warn you of…is that it is highly addictive!

About The Author

cghumphriss

Born in Johannesburg but a Capetonian at heart. Twenty-something year old, loving life and writing about it along the way! I graduated from the University of Cape Town in 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Media studies and English Literature. I am passionate about reading, writing and researching. I currently work at Sable Forex as a Forex Broker that deals specifically in transfers out of South Africa. I am an avid writer and blogger with an extreme passion for anything to do with the English language. I am very excited to be given this opportunity!

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