In a traditional yoga practice you quickly realise there are some pretty amazing and fanciful poses out there. They're the dangling carrot that keeps many a yogi going. They're clearly the result of a lot of dedication and persistence on the part of the practitioner, and the lessons gained in working towards those poses are good ones. But it's easy to get caught up in the fabulousness of the pose. We must be careful to not over-prioritise outward appearance.
For your emotional health and physical safety this is important. The yoga of the pose is the attitude you take as you approach things and the intention with which you practice. Use your body to see that you are not your body. The practice of yoga -- and of life -- is developing the skill of being present no matter what. What does it say about you if you only want to be present when you're doing something brilliant? I only want to be with you when you're doing well. Is that a healthy way to see yourself? Please tell me you're not doing that in any relationship -- with yourself or with others.
By noticing these tendencies in your yoga practice, you'll begin to spot where you do this off the mat, too. Are you over-prioritising your outward appearance? When is it too much? Looking good helps all of us feel good, so surely there's a sweet spot. Can you be aware of times if and when you step into worrying about it too much? When it comes at the expense of your internal state (happy, enjoying the moment) that's when you've put appearance over attitude.
Use your body in yoga to know that you are not your body. There's so much more out there.
Here you'll find essays and musings on applied mindfulness. What does this look like on a daily basis? How can you infuse it in your day to enjoy yourself more? Join hundreds of others on the the mailing list (link in footer) to get these straight to your inbox.