Think progress, not perfection
Yoga practitioners the world over have touted the benefits of a daily yoga routine for centuries. The results are undeniable:
- Improved flexibility
- Better balance
- Increased strength
- More endurance
- Advanced coping skills
- Reduced stress
- Added energy
- Positive attitude
- Uplifted mood
So why not devote time to a daily yoga routine? Your reasons may seem unique to you, but they usually come down to a few common excuses:
- Not enough time
- Too tired
- Lack of desire
Those excuses are the very reasons to develop a daily yoga practice! So if you say you’re ready and willing, the next step is to figure out a way to smoothly integrate yoga into your daily routine. Once it becomes as habitual as brushing your teeth, your daily yoga practice will flourish — and so will you.
If you really want to start a daily yoga practice, we can help. Here’s how to get there and still keep a job, make and eat healthy meals, clean the house, build and hold relationships, enjoy sports and hobbies, and find time to just relax. Keep reading…
Set Realistic Goals
Any amount of time you spend on your daily yoga practice will provide immediate benefits. If you’re a beginner, 30 minutes is a good place to start. Decide ahead of time when you’ll roll out the mat each day. Once you begin to feel the results of a daily practice, you may want to move into an hour-long daily yoga session.
One hour. That’s the ideal amount of time to devote to a daily yoga practice, according to most yogis. That gives you sufficient time for both asanas and meditation without being rushed. When you have extra time, extend your practice to an hour-and-a-half session. Use the extra time for total immersion in each pose, a longer savasana, and/or to sustain your meditation.
Create a Comfortable Space
Few yoga practitioners attend classes daily, although it’s always an option. To dedicate yourself to a daily yoga practice at home, you need to create a safe, comfortable space where you can quietly execute your poses and delve into your meditation.
You don’t need to dedicate a separate room to your practice. You can even do without a place for the traditional accoutrements like a small shrine or a spot to burn scented candles. As long as you can roll up your yoga mat when you’re done, all you need is to identify a space and time to practice uninterrupted, where you feel free to be your true, authentic self without reservations.
Make a Commitment
To fully realize the transformation and energy that come from a daily yoga practice, make the time you designate for your routine a priority. As much as possible, schedule any other engagements and appointments around your daily yoga practice. You’ll discover that you can’t imagine living without it.
During the hour you devote to your practice, you’ll feel in control of your personal growth. It will seem that you have more time than you ever thought possible. After your yoga session, you’ll have more motivation and energy to fulfill all your obligations — and then some.
That said, your yoga practice should help facilitate balance in your life and not create more stress. Cultivate patience as you move into a daily yoga practice. If you miss a day, forgive yourself and start over the next day. And then there are some days when our practice exists within our life and our daily activities and that’s enough. The key to a daily yoga practice is not to strive for perfection, but to realize it’s all progress. It’s called a “practice” for good reason.
Inspiration from the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
Sutra 1.14. Our yoga practice becomes firmly rooted when continued with sincere dedication and without interruption over a long period of time.
Yoga is meant to be a lifelong practice. Your commitment is to yourself and there is no deadline. Just practice.