To fully embrace a practice, regardless if its yoga or work, you should not be afraid to fall. If you can’t fully commit to the task at hand, then you aren’t really doing it all. The other day, I decided to squeeze in some practice time of my own. As a teacher, your body doesn’t instantly gain and retain all yogic knowledge the minute you step in front of a group. Just as anyone else, I need to practice to keep my Down Dog up to par ;).

So here I was, making the most out of the 30 minutes I had to spare, and I was playing around with arm balances. I love arm balances as they require more focus and physics than I ever imagined. Even if 30% of the pose is strength in the arms to support your body, the rest of it is placing the body and it’s limbs in a way so that you can stay perched atop your hands. I had seen flying pigeon online and have been toying around with it for the last few weeks. In my head, the lift and ease of the pose will come once I am able to use my core to keep my hips elevated (instead of them dragging me down). What actually happened was that I face planted into the mat, skinning my knee as I crashed down. Yes, it hurt a bit, but I was also laughing at the absurdity of the situation as I lay half twisted, face down on a mat in the middle of studio…by myself.

The beauty of the situation is that it reminded me why we “practice” anything. Unless we continue to challenge ourselves in any skill, there will be no growth. You may be resistant to growth if you have fear (fear of falling to fear of public speaking), and when all else fails, we must be willing to laugh at ourselves. Life is to short and precious to take it so seriously. Even when you’re doing something serious, we should still approach all situations with an open mind (and open heart) instead of being completely focused on how we think it should or shouldn’t be.

Approach yoga and any of your tasks with the curiosity of a child, because sometimes a fall is inevitable, and the only option you have is to get right back up and keep on going =)