Good morning, everybody, and welcome to today’s Work Of Becoming podcast where I want to tell you the story of the first time I went to a yoga class, which, spoiler alert, was four days ago. And the reason I want to talk to you about this is because it was a really, really great reminder to me of how beneficial it is to stretch ourselves and to encourage ourselves to do new things.
I think especially in adulthood, we can find rhythms in our lives. We go to the same restaurants for dinner. We go to the same activities. We hang out with the same people. We do the same thing after work. We watch the same TV show on Wednesdays, and there’s a comfort to that rhythm. But as we are in this journey of change, and when we’re trying to learn about ourselves, sometimes the best thing that we can do to learn about ourselves is to put ourselves in a new situation.
So, on Saturday of this past week, my partner was gone. He was away visiting some friends, and so, it was just me and Zoom alone at the house. And normally, if this was the situation, we would have a laze day, and I would probably default to doing some work for my business, which I don’t really do on the weekends, but when Jon is gone, I allow myself to do that work.
But this Saturday, I woke up, and Zoom was full of energy, and so, I was like, “Okay, we need to do something. I’m gonna do something different than I normally have done.” So, I took him on a little doggy adventure, and we went to Petco, we went to a dog park, and when I got home, I started thinking to myself, and I was like I feel this is a different version of me, right? This is a different version of me that approached today. I went out and did things today. I was more active and vibrant and present in my life than I would have been before, and that was an awesome sign for me because those are some of the things I’m working on in my own Core Four, which is the framework that we use for our coaching clients in Alliance, and I follow it, too. And so, one of the things I’m working on is being active and vibrant, so being present in my life, doing things that help me experience life to the fullest.
And so, I started to ask myself, I was like, “What else could I do?” And there’s a yoga studio that is really, really close to where I live, and I started thinking about it, and I was like, “Maybe I’ll go to a yoga class!” Now, of course, I want to be totally honest with you. As soon as I thought of this option, I was intrigued, but I was terrified, as we are with most things that we’ve never done before. This is the exact same way I felt before I hired my first coach: intrigued but terrified. And I was worried about all kinds of things. I was worried that the yoga class would be too hard for me, and I wouldn’t be able to keep up. I was worried that I wouldn’t know what to do when I got there because I didn’t know — do I just walk in? Do I have to sign in? Where do I put my shoes? Do I have to bring my own mat?
And so, I started frantically doing all of this research about how to go to your first yoga class, and I started looking at the reviews of this place to see if there were any clues about, okay, do you need to bring a mat, what do you need to bring, what do you need to not bring. And I was terrified. I was nervous. I was anxious. But there was part of me that still could feel my desire, my desire to step into this, my desire to try something new.
So, I paid 20 bucks, and I signed up for the yoga class, and I spent the next 30 minutes frantically on the internet researching, found some information, grabbed a yoga mat that we had, filled my water bottle, and went to the class. And the class, I mean, it was uncomfortable, right? I got there, and I was like, “I don’t know what to do,” and I followed everybody else’s cues. So, everybody else went and signed in and then put their shoes in a certain cubby, so I was like, “Okay, I’m just gonna do what they’re doing.” And the whole time as we were getting there I was like, “I don’t know what I’m doing!”
The class started, and I had found a spot that was really far in the back because I was like, “Surely, this will be best. That way no one can see me.” Well, the trainer, the coach, the yoga person was at the front of the class, and so, I could barely hear him talk because they had music going that was super loud. So, the whole class, I’m managing my mind, I’m trying to figure out what everybody else is doing, he’s using words I’ve never heard before, I’m trying to breathe and relax because I know that’s part of yoga, too. And let me tell you, it was a brain-stretching experience. I had to do so much mind management in that moment, and because I had to do that, it was an amazing space for personal growth.
I grew so much in the span of that hour over and over again having to say, “It’s okay, Karin. You’ve got this. Do what you need to do. If you need to sit down, you can sit down. Just watch the other people. It’s okay.” Self-regulating for that full hour in this new environment, in this new context, it was so good. And when I finished the class, I was so freaking proud of myself for going. And now that I’ve done it once, I’m definitely gonna go back because I actually did enjoy the novelty and the challenge of it.
So, that’s where I want to finish off today’s episode, and I want to finish off with the reminder that if there is something in your life where you have a spark of desire, where you’re like, “I kind of want to try that,” or, “I kind of want to join that thing,” or, “This kind of sounds interesting, but I just don’t know. I’m scared. I’m nervous. I’m anxious,” that’s a normal part of the process, but it probably means that that thing is an amazing container and opportunity for you to grow.
I will see you in the next episode!