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38 Lessons From the Yoga Mat (Again)

Author:

Alyssa has a passion for fitness and sharing her favorite tips and tricks with the world. Alyssa is a wife, mom, and coffee enthusiast.

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A few minutes after the clock strikes midnight and the world celebrates a brand new year under showers of confetti, I tuck my son into bed and make my way to my own pillow. As I close my eyes, I smile knowing that the one event I look forward to each January will be waiting for me when the sun rises: 30 Days of Yoga with Adriene.

My first taste of yoga came with a side of Motown hits and feel good movements. Years later, I had an opportunity to try it again, this time on a stunning beach in Ibiza. But it wasn't until I was actively searching for low back pain relief that I came across Yoga with Adriene. I loved her style, her quirky personality, and her motto: find what feels good. It was Adriene who helped me discover my love for yoga, and who helped me bring my confidence from the dance floor to my yoga mat.

For the past several years, I've practiced yoga daily. I enjoy turning music on and just flowing on my mat; I love to host and participate in Instagram yoga challenges; and for the past year, I've been doing Buti Yoga a few times a week. Every month, I make a point to fit in a couple of yoga sessions with Adriene, but in January I commit to a full 30 days.

Returning to this challenge feels like coming home. It brings me back to the core of my practice, reminding me of why I started in the place. Moreover, it's just a great way to begin the new year.

Each year, Adriene focuses on a specific concept and the theme for 2021 was breath. When our 30 days are completed, I like to reflect on the lessons I learned and how I can carry this knowledge into my daily practice, and my life, moving forward. The following is what I learned, or what I was gently reminded of, this year.

Breath - A 30 Day Yoga Journey | Yoga With Adriene

1. The breath is always there for you.

2. There's time for everything.

3. We must go slow to move fast.

4. With each breath, we have the opportunity to begin again.

5. Each day on the mat offers new lessons.

6. Don't be so serious. Make it fun.

7. When you fall off the path, come back to the breath.

8. Snuggle up to the role of the observer.

9. How you move matters.

10. Every time you're on the mat, it's a new experience... if you allow it.

11. Feel your way through your practice.

12. Listen and respond mindfully with conscious breath.

13. Flow like water.

14. Use it.

15. I'm still not a fan of bird dog pose.

16. Stay open to possibilities.

17. Move from center.

18. Strength comes from a conscious relationship with the breath.

19. We're here for practice not perfection.

20. Build strength with grace.

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21. Find strength in stillness.

22. Relish in the pause.

23. Instead of what you're doing, focus on how you're moving.

24. You bring the awareness.

25. You are the creator of your practice.

26. Finding your breath is finding yourself.

27. Showing up for yourself is an act of love.

28. Half the battle is showing up.

29. Remember to have fun.

30. Breathe like you love yourself.

31. The attention and love we seek is often within.

32. Stay open to the idea that you are love.

33. Each time we show up, it's a new day.

34. The tools of our yoga practice can prepare us for our journey off the mat.

35. Use the anchor of your breath to return to the present moment.

36. Everything is as it should be.

37. The breath is always there for you.

38. Every end is a new beginning.

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© 2021 Alyssa

Comments

Alyssa (author) from Ohio on February 01, 2021:

Thank you Bill! Happy February!

Alyssa (author) from Ohio on February 01, 2021:

Thank you so much!

Alyssa (author) from Ohio on February 01, 2021:

Thank you Pamela!

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on February 01, 2021:

Fascinating and inspiring, Alyssa! It certainly is working for you, and I'm not one to argue with results. Carry on doing what you're doing, my friend, and Happy February!

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on February 01, 2021:

Very well presented. Thanks.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on February 01, 2021:

This is quite motivating. Practising Yoga is a great way to remain healthy, and I can vouch for it. Minding our breath is most important.

Well written article. Thank you for sharing.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on February 01, 2021:

This sounds like a wonderful, healthy lifestyls. It is nice to have someone to work out with, and especially your common goals. That is a great list, Alyssa.