A thought on progress

MeditationLike a lot of people, I have a good way of avoiding situations that make me feel embarrassed or uncomfortable. One such situation is attending a yoga class…and that’s because I flat out suck.

As someone else in that yoga class, you would never see it coming. You’d probably  see me and think, “ah, young fit-looking woman with Lululemon yoga pants, glass bottle of lemon water and a premium yoga mat. She must know what she’s doing.” (Yes, everyone sounds like a British nobleman in my head).

And then you’d see me huffing, puffing and flailing around losing my balance. Cursing and crashing onto my knees. Using every “option” that the instructor permits. (It’s really not encouraging when the 80-year old woman next to you skips the option and you can barely keep up with her). I always end up as that one person the instructor gives the most attention to.

So this morning I finally decided to go to a yoga class after a really, really long time. I’m not sure what changed this time around. Maybe it’s because my body was craving it, or maybe it’s because I just don’t want to deal with my own excuses anymore. But this time around I loved that I sucked. Not in a weirdo masochistic way, but in the way that I knew this area of my life needed work and that I was actively doing something about it. Instead of just saying “err…yoga isn’t for me”.

I can’t remember where I read this or heard this, probably some Robin Sharma book or Tony Robbins talk, but this person said that the people who are happiest are those who are constantly learning, and constantly growing. Although passive pleasure (e.g. watching TV) is fun, challenging pleasure (learning a hobby, new sport, taking a course) is far more rewarding because you’re forced to be more active or present throughout the journey. You get to experience the joy of progress and growth at each new milestone.

So why is it that I wasn’t doing these things more often? I guess it boils down to fear. I’ve always had a competitive mindset, so I enjoyed learning something if I knew I was probably going to be good at it i.e. kicking butt in school exams. But I’ve shied away from a lot of things I’ve wanted to learn, simply because I was too embarrassed about looking stupid or failing along the way. Like practising Spanish with native speakers, being in a yoga class, speaking in public more often.

I realize this is how a lot of people must feel about nutrition, the way I did with the yoga class. If you’re so accustomed to not being that “healthy” person, or are too embarrassed to admit how much you binge, hate vegetables or don’t know how to boil an egg…where do you get the courage to begin?

If anyone reading this feels that way, I’d like to say that at the end of the day, we all started from point zero. If you just allow yourself the opportunity to learn and grow, the worst that’s going to happen is you’ll become a slightly better version of yourself. And if you really, really are having trouble moving past the fear of failing or looking stupid, come to a yoga class with me. I might just inspire you to go look stupid too.




About Alina

I'm a Holistic Nutritionist based in Toronto, Canada and my official title is Certified Nutritional Practitioner (CNP). I received my diploma in Applied Holistic Nutrition from the Institute of Holistic Nutrition. I'm a coach and an educator. Follow Alina on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram for all of the latest updates.
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