Finding softness within the hard.
This is something I talk about all the time when I teach yoga. Whether I’m teaching a yin yoga class or a yang styled yoga class I always encourage my students to find softness within the hard.
Whether you are in a headstand, a plank pose or you are holding a yin pose for five minutes, it can be hard. It can both be mentally and physically challenging. Perhaps finding stillness in yin yoga is hard. Perhaps you struggle with finding the balance in headstand. Maybe you find holding plank pose for an extended amount of time insufferable. No matter what feelings of hard are bound to come up at some point during your yoga practice.
That is why I encourage students to find softness within the hard. For me this means leaning into the hard. It means breathing. It means not engaging more muscles that you have to. It means melting into the pose. It means to not resist or work against the hard. It means to not fight it, run away or hide from it.
This is what finding softness in the hard means for me.
Finding softness within the hard in life
Of course, finding softness within the hard on our yoga mats is great. But if we can’t use that in our lives as well, then what is the point? This is what I love about yoga. The lessons you learn on the mat can be used off the mat as well. Because really finding softness within the hard in a plank pose is not the important thing, but finding softness within the hard outside the mat is, and that’s when you can start to use your yoga practice outside the mat.
We all experience hardships in our life. That is normal. I’ve had a boyfriend who died, I’ve been a toxic relationship with a mentally abusive man, I’ve experienced all the struggles of starting your own business, I don’t have the best relationship with my family… We all have hard things in our life.
What I’m proposing is that we start to find softness within these hard things. Let me give you some examples.
When my boyfriend passed away six years ago it was hard. But instead of running away from the grief or trying to fight it, I leaned into it. I felt all the feelings and emotions. I allowed myself to feel sad and cry. I didn’t try to numb my grief with alcohol or food. I leaned into the grief. I breathed love and light into the grief. I found softness within the hard.
I did the same thing when I first started my business. It was so hard and overwhelming, and there were certainly times where I thought about throwing in the towel and just giving up. However, I knew I wanted to have my own business, and I knew that the beginning would be hard. So I breathed, and I leaned into the hard. I didn’t fight it or run away. I leaned into it.
I do the same thing when I sometimes get frustrated with my family. I lean into the feelings. I find softness. I tune into softness when I have conversations with them, even if they are coming from a place of hardness. I still try to find softness.
I think that when we find softness within the hard, things become so much easier to bear. We move through hardship with more grace. We struggle less, and we are in less pain. At least that is my experience.
So whether it’s on your yoga mat or off your yoga mat, see if you can find softness within the hard.
As always, if you have any questions or you are interested in working with me in my coaching program, you are welcome to contact me.
Love & Light,