Last night I discovered that my “on the mat” yoga personality completely matches my “off the mat” personality. In the middle of my class last night it occurred to me that I am just as uptight and neurotic in class as I am all the time. For instance, no matter what pose we are supposed to be in, I’m neurotically straining my neck to see the instructor. I need to see her to verify that I’m in the right pose. “Am I doing this right? Do I have the correct arm in the air? Do I look foolish? Is the instructor looking at me? Am I sure I’m doing his right?” Yes, that’s me. How many times should I need to LOOK at down dog before I’m confident that I know what I’m doing? I could ask the same question to myself about cooking pasta. How many times to I need to cook pasta before I STOP reading the instructions on the box and setting the timer to 10 minutes? It’s official. I’m sick.
When I caught myself peering across the room at the instructor last night to verify that my basic yoga pose was correct, I happened to glance over at my friend Lisa. That’s when it hit me. What a difference between me and Lisa. Lisa is a laid back, free spirited artist. While I’m worrying about if my knee is at a precise 90 degree bend, Lisa has her eyes closed and is fully immersed in the moment of yoga. She didn’t seem to have a care or worry in the world. She was completely confident in her poses and didn’t need any visual verification.
Now isn’t yoga supposed to be all about your own pace and whatever feels comfortable for you? Why am I so neurotic? I guess you can take a wild animal out of the wild. But they are still a wild animal and just because they are not in their normal habitat doesn’t mean they have changed their disposition. Once a wild animal, always a wild animal. Is there any hope for me?