This month was full of discovery. I am finally balancing in forearm stand and as this was happening my teacher stopped the class and said, “the handstand doesn’t matter, in fact, that is the secret of yoga. All of this time we spend deepening our physical bodies is simply an outcome of practice, you must deepen to attain the same stretch that a simpler pose gave you when you started. Achieving a pose is the least important part of practice.”

At first I was taken aback, I JUST got this pose! I’ve been working on it for more than a year! Of COURSE it’s about getting to pose! And then I realized the magic of understanding that it truly isn’t about “getting a pose”. As a teacher I’ve felt more of a need to get poses checked off than I did before, so I can teach them to students without being a fraud in their eyes. But it doesn’t matter because although I guide students in practice, their bodies are their teachers, just as my body is my teacher.

Even though I am proud of what my body has done to open up this new inversion for me, I am more thankful for the process. When I now pop into a forearm stand and hold it, I am witness to hundreds of failed attempts, many helping hands from teachers, and all of the thousands of asanas I have practiced throughout my life that led me to this moment. That is the most important part of yoga.

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This is freeing, you don’t need to achieve for yoga, you just need to show up and listen to your body.

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