I recently read a social media post that had a yard sign planted in some grass. The sign said, “Please keep on the grass. Lie down. Roll around in it. Forget all your responsibilities. Have an ice cream…” Yeah, that’s the yoga mat life.
Reading too many social media posts and seeing too many news stories that do nothing but create divisiveness and fear? Need an antidote to darkness and hate and self-righteousness? Do you just want to take a breath without being judged or yelled at? It’s probably safe to bet that you answered “yes” to at least one of those. Apart from becoming a hermit, there really aren’t any ways to avoid a culture that seems driven by “I’m-right-you’re-wrong.” The best we can do is find ways of managing the stress of this culture and emulating the behavior we wish to see in others. And a life on the yoga mat is a good step in that direction.
Yoga can be a physical challenge, and that’s something you either embrace, or you don’t. Like the stress of an antagonistic culture. If the physical challenge of yoga isn’t your cup of tea, then maybe the mental challenge is. Take it easy on the poses and focus on breath and mindfulness. This is where you’ll find the capacity for empathy, tolerance, even forgiveness. With those tools in your toolbox, you’ll find yourself rolling around in that grass, appreciating the uplifting things in life, and helping yourself and others to connect to the positive energy we all have the capacity to generate.
Go ahead – stay on the grass. Open your eyes, your arms, and your mind and drink in the benefits of a yoga mat life.