What can we learn from yoga about Transitions & Change?
The practice of yoga teaches us how to be in the present, and the more we practice the more easily this will come to us both on the mat and in daily life. Just as we move through life, we move through a sequence of asanas (poses) as we practice yoga on our mats. Whether it is our own practice and we can choose which pose comes next or whether it is a set series taught by a teacher, there is still the need for a mindful transition between poses.
- During transitions, your attention may wander, causing you to lose focus. Try to adjust your perspective so that the movement from pose to pose becomes just as important as the stopping places
- In flow classes, you go through the traditional vinyasa sequence of poses (Downward Facing Dog to Plank to Chaturanga to Upward Facing Dog to Downward Facing Dog) many times. That makes it easy to space out, rely on old habits, and disconnect from your body. Instead, try to bring your attention to every movement in this series. The transitions are particularly important here because they set up the good alignment that is necessary to do these tricky poses frequently over time with less risk of injury.
- Allow your transitions between postures to be transformative, to take you on a journey rather than just a goal to reach the destination.
- Breath & Mindfulness are perfect tools to use during yoga to feel the transition and notice the change.
Transitions & Change in Life
When we learn to transition and unfold in our lives off the mat with the same care that enriches our physical practice on the mat, we will bring more beauty, harmony and joy into our lives and the lives of those around us.
- Can we notice and be present with the space of “in between” in our daily life? In the transitions between days, weeks, months, seasons, and years. In both the expected and unexpected transitions and significant life events
- Can we give ourselves what we need to move slowly and gradually from one thing to another? Being self-compassionate if there are some transitions that are harder for us than others. And being curious about the possible reasons why.
- Can we support ourselves through the disruption and shock of sudden change with care and comfort? Reaching out for help and support from others as part of this process.
- Can we be present with our thoughts and feelings as they ebb and flow? Remembering that nothing is permanent, our thoughts are not facts, and all feelings are valid in the present moment. Pausing to notice our thoughts and feelings gives us the space to respond constructively rather than having knee-jerk reactions.
It may seem like a long transition to go from your yoga practice on the mat to life off the mat. Yoga essentially too is about life, preparing and supporting you on the mat for life and training your nervous system to stay regulated in the face of all transitions and changes life throws at you.