How could yoga possibly change someone’s life? I know the whole yoga-practicing, green-juice-drinking, positive-attitude yoga hippie is such a stereotype, but somehow this practice, that usually starts as a new hobby, can slowly start affecting your diet, relationships and outlook on life. This is the story of how yoga allowed me to go from just existing to actually living.
A few years back, I was in a relationship where I saw my significant other about once a month. I was living in a city where I didn’t feel welcome. Every morning, on my way to a soul crushing job, I wondered if I should board the train or jump under it. Then I found yoga.
I had previously attended trial classes and weekend courses for beginners, but yoga had never become a part of my life. I decided to try yoga again and was so lucky that the first class I attended was Geoff’s. At a time when nothing in my life made sense, his classes had me going back to the yoga studio every single Wednesday.
The workplace bullying, loneliness and unhappiness had started to deteriorate both my body and my mind. But for that one hour a week, I felt like I was good enough. After a while, I started going to other classes as well and nothing filled me with more excitement than rolling out a mat on the studio floor. Without even realizing it, a shift was slowly happening inside of me.
Instead of feeling like a victim of circumstances, I became the hero of my own life. I was sick of feeling sorry for myself. I realized, I don’t have to live here or work there. I can do whatever the hell I want. While yoga doesn’t remove problems, it helps me deal with any challenges life brings.
But yoga also ruined many things for me.
Yoga ruined my diet, because I’d much rather eat a bowl of lentil soup than a juicy steak.
Yoga ruined my career, because I’d rather practice handstands than learn how to use Excel.
Yoga ruined dinner parties, because sitting in a chair for extended amounts of time feels completely unnatural.
Yoga ruined my social life, because on a Friday night, I’d much rather attend a yoga class than go out to a club.
Yoga ruined my romantic life, because I’d rather do sun salutations than go on a date.
Yoga ruined my fashion sense, because I’d much rather wear yoga tights than skinny jeans.
Yoga ruined awkward moments, because long hugs and direct eye contact has become the norm.
Yoga ruined small talk, because I’d rather talk about feelings than the weather.
Yoga ruined excessive gossiping, because judging people is no fun anymore.
Yoga ruined limited beliefs, because I’ve witnessed that anything is possible.
Yoga ruined staying inside my comfort zone, because the more I step outside of it, the better life gets.
Yoga ruined worrying about the future, because I’ve learnt to focus on the present moment.
Yoga ruined my life. And I’m so happy it did. Because without it, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have one.
Tomorrow I start yoga teacher training.