The Yoga of New Year’s Resolutions
I first noticed the pattern of swelling attendance at yoga studios following New Year’s Day when I taught a weekly yoga class at Sivananda’s in New York City for many years. Students signed up for beginner’s classes, monthly passes, and were committed to at least the first 5 -week round of introductory yoga classes (which I taught also).
Many continued, but many also lost steam sometime during the second month, in mid-February (a rough patch for New Yorkers anyway!).
The ritual of making resolutions is a powerful self-motivational tool. We’ve just gone through a month or two of non-stop holidaying, we’re filled with good cheer hopefully (that came in all shapes and sizes) and now we’re going to use all those good tidings and well wishes to get serious about our life. And usually it’s our health that gets flagged “priority” on our new year’s list. It may be one of the only areas of our life where we feel like “doing something” could actually help change our situation. After all, I’m guessing that the other big areas of our life- love and money- may be more unpredictable than any of us want to admit (well maybe not according to Suse Orman or e-harmony but I’m sticking with my own “field research” here!)
This is a good thing-so don’t pooh-pooh any effort to introduce something as powerful as yoga into your life. But like yoga, which has survived and adapted through many streams of civilizations, be prepared to renew your New Year’s resolution–daily. Yes, that’s what I said, daily.
Even after 20 years of practice, I still need to reconnect daily. So when I place my towel or yoga mat on the floor, I don’t know if I’ll be able to sit or crawl or balance on one leg that day. And somehow that reminds me that all of life (and death) continues being -steadily surprising! Very yogic. And Happy New Year’s Resolutions to you!