Yoga is not meant to be forced. It’s unhealthy to force our bodies to do anything. If we do, whether that be mentally or physically, we can bring harm to ourselves. The same can be said for anything we do in this lifetime. If we try and force relationships, stick with a job we dislike, try and dress a certain way because it’s the ‘in’ thing to do. If we force anything in our lives, the likely result is not ideal.
So back to the practice. Do you wake up in the morning and hit the snooze button fives times before getting up? Or make a decision to put your practice off until tomorrow as you’re too tired? Or it will be too hard and you just simply can’t be bothered? Be honest with yourself now. Is this you? Don’t worry - I’m right there with you, for ALL of the above. Let’s just say my alarm and I are never likely to become good friends. I sometimes think I’m crazy getting up and training before the birds are even awake - BUT I know the reward is much greater, giving me the right amount of motivation to roll out my mat and sit on it. And this is where you’re headed also.
Naturally, we like to relax. I mean - who doesn’t! And I totally understand that yoga is not always considered ‘relaxing’ when holding strong asanas. However, your daily practice doesn’t need to be strenuous if you’re body is not feeling up to it. Be gentle on yourself. Allow your body to just feel what’s going on. Stretch it out. If you want to take it to a deeper, stronger level then absolutely go there. But if not, grant yourself the permission to do a lighter practice that morning. Roll around on your mat and notice the body. Take time to breathe deeply. This is enough. By having the freedom to do what your body is asking, rather than follow the same YouTube video you’ve been watching for months (and feel obligated to keep following), will bring you deeper into self. This is where the true magic is.
So next time your alarm goes off and you’re just not feeling up to a strong practice (possibly dreading it), or bored of the same routine, instead use that time to gently stretch it out, breathe and just be.