My practice has been erratic since I got more involved in the microfinance sector last quarter of 2009. January is almost over and i have had full practice only twice so far. Not really good. In between those times, I did either standing poses or flow yoga.
Last Sunday, weirdest of weird things, I hurt my back as I move to prasarita A. It’s just a forward bend that I have been doing since I was a kid so how did I hurt myself? I don’t know. Teacher A asked if I bent my knees as I move to the pose. I was not sure. Lack of awareness. Bah! Teacher J suspected I was pushing myself too much. Probably, but not necessarily in my practice. Hmmm. Back hurts until now but at a tolerable degree.
I’m now back to doing flow yoga where I started. Since it’s less physically demanding than ashtanga, I could rest my back for a while without really foregoing practice. Back to basics. Pun intended.
I shifted style to ashtanga exactly a year ago and as I did flow today, I noticed remarkable changes in my body. My arms are definitely stronger now; seated forward bends are deeper and much easier, and my triangle looks a lot better (though still imperfect). However, I find certain asanas more difficult to do now, if I could at all. Pigeon has become IMPOSSIBLE, not even the modified pose; the bow and some twists have turned particularly difficult despite the marichys. I guess there’s a trade-off between strength and flexibility.
I’d like to believe that the flip side of trade-off is focus. By focusing on what’s important to me, I put all others in the periphery (and some I even give up). And so if I constantly favor that one item in the trade-off, I am in effect focusing on it.
This year, I just made two major decisions in life, as I focus on things that matter to me the most. Sure there are trade-offs but slowly I can see how everything fits together. Necessary trade-offs they turn out to be. As a professor once said, laser can do so much more than an ordinary light, cutting through even the toughest material, because it is focused. Yup,maybe that’s what I want–I want to do more and cut through all (possible) obstacles in achieving them.
So my mantra this year is FOCUS, FOCUS, FOCUS.