Our Friend Difficulty

Yoga CentralComment

How we interact with difficulty is a defining feature of our character.

In yoga, we can practice this interaction by introducing difficulty in small gradual amounts. We can practice handling difficulty with calm and poise and with a deep breath. You are in charge of your own effort. We can embrace difficulty as a close friend because there is really little satisfaction in doing what is immediately accessible. We value our accomplishments more when we had to work for them.

We encounter difficulty when we take on a new endeavor, when life hands us the unexpected, when plans go awry, and with aging and sickness. We encounter difficulty no matter which way we turn.

When taking on a new endeavor, how do you react to difficulty? Are you willing to take the time and go through the awkwardness of being a beginner? Are you patient with yourself and with development that is slower than expected? Do you complain about your progress more than you work on your progress?

With the right mental strategy we can choose to find difficulty fun and interesting, rather than frustrating.

Yoga can be very easy at times, in fact, sometimes we even stop trying and let go and surrender, but that peaceful relaxation helps us get back up ready to apply ourselves in a more consolidated way to the work in our lives. There is also an inherent difficulty built into even the easiest yoga practices. That is the challenge to concentrate, to be present, to examine oneself and to make healthy choices. Yoga is always inviting you to grow.

Remember, each step of the way is worthy of honor.