This picture is a great reminder for us that the goal is not the actual goal.
It’s classic to hear people say, “I can’t do yoga, I can’t touch my toes.”
“Yoga is not about touching your toes, it’s about what you learn on the way down.” (From Judith Hanson Lasater author of A Year of Living Your Yoga).
This can be carried to other activities other than yoga. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the physical exercise part of any sport or activity whether yoga or not. If we focus on our experience, we can connect to our selves and begin the path of self-discovery. I often like to remind students that those intense sensations that are felt in a pose is a way for the body to communicate to us. The conversation is constant but we usually only “hear” (feel) them when they are screaming at us with pain. Then we either react or completely try to ignore it and real experience is never experienced.
I’ve learned that easing off in the pose to a point where I can let go of getting a Yoga Journal perfect pose, I can focus on the sensations and where they stem from. This helps me to focus on the experience and I usually learn a thing or two about my hips or my shoulders or where ever and whatever thing that is presenting the challenge at that time.
Yoga Graffiti Contest: As you tag away for your photo, remember that the ultimate goal is not all about winning. It’s also not all about the Africa Yoga Project. Certainly these are two factors/by-products (important ones for that matter) of the experience but it is ultimately about what you have learned about yourself during the process. I’m certain that you will step outside of your comfort zone to get that “winning” photo, but discover something new in this new territory, often called your edge.