Letting go of expectations to change your practices.
Meditation & Yoga
Allowing yourself to let go of any expectations with meditation or yoga can be your first step into truly practicing. Expectations with yoga and meditation can be a metaphor for life, all of life’s suffering comes from expectations. It is as if we are swimming against the current of the universe’s planning and taking care of us. Having plans or desires for the future is one thing, it is the attachment to the outcomes or the expectations that leave us in a place of suffering.
You may have heard of all the “it saved my life” stories from people all over the world about yoga and meditation. It’s 2017 – for the most part we know the benefits of yoga and meditation, and know, if you haven’t already, that we should be practicing.
Some expectations that may arise as we begin our journey into these practices are:
- You will be standing on your head after your first class.
- Nothing will ever ‘bug’ you again once you start meditating.
- Miracles and abundance will happen overnight.
- You will no longer have any thoughts.
- You have to do it with a group of people or alone.
These are just some of the expectations we may experience while we continue or prepare to begin a meditation or yoga practice. Here are ways to let them go:
- Before you attend a yoga class (first class or not) thank yourself for allowing your body to show up and do amazing work. Remind yourself that not all bodies are the same and with time and dedication your practice (whatever it may be) will develop into something beautiful TO YOU!
- Each and everyday is so different and so is your practice. You will have good and bad days that allow you to tune into whatever feelings arise that day. Before you begin your practice tell yourself that “NO matter how I think I feel before or after my practice I am still doing good work that is benefiting my mind and body”.
- Miracles are an amazing part of learning to observe your thoughts and movements. Learning to understand that miracles happen everyday, will lower your expectations of receiving huge miracles daily. Consider this – waking up to a brand new day is as amazing of a miracle as getting approved for your mortgage loan.
- If we no longer had thoughts we would be, plain and simple, dead. We would no longer be human beings or connected at the human level. Thoughts are what our brains do, like our eyes blink and our lungs breath. Letting go of the fact you will never stop thinking will allow you to approach your thoughts non-judgmentally, leading you to a stronger and more amazing practice.
- There is no right or wrong amount of people to practice yoga or meditation with. What is important is always asking yourself what you are needing that day. If you are needing a little bit of accountability or commitment maybe find a class or a group of friends to practice with. If you have a provoking thought or question you are trying to settle, maybe take your practice to a quiet corner so you are able to tune in a little deeper.
Yoga and meditation are not about doing or achieving but rather about being and observing. Preconceived notions can actually keep you from truly experiencing the benefits of your practice. Let go of those expectations, they are not needed here.