Rachel is the Director of Teachers’ College and Development at YYoga, Canada’s largest Canadian yoga company in Vancouver, BC. A teacher of teachers and total nerd, she has personally certified hundreds of yoga teachers and logged thousands of hours as a teacher trainer. She has been interviewed about her yoga expertise by the Huffington Post, CTV, Breakfast Television, Cedar and Gold Online Magazine, and the Vancouver Province Newspaper (with video) and written for Yoga International, Half Moon, and the Huffington Post. She began blogging about her romantic adventures and quickly discovered that her readers were hungry for more! In addition to blogging, she launched an ongoing video blog series called “Yoga and Relationships” that has garnered over 70,000 views. She is currently writing “Wit and Wisdom the Yoga Mat” and “Yogi’s Guide to Dating,” both due for publication later this year. So without further ado, we present to you one of her blog posts on saying no to self-limiting beliefs. Take a look below to see what she has to say!
Saying No to Self-Limiting Beliefs
Your mind is a beautiful cage.
Glorious, glittering, shiny, and infinitely complex…but a cage nonetheless.
From the time we’re children, we create an understanding of the world and live by the subsequent rules that we create. And for the most part, these beliefs go unchallenged.
- “I can’t sing.”
- “I’m not good at math.”
- “You can’t have your cake and eat it, too.”
- “I can’t do a handstand.”
We cruise along in our lives, blithely acting in accordance with these governing beliefs. And because our mind is so darn persuasive, we often agree to its rules without a second thought.
But your yoga practice is different.
In yoga, we are asked to dive beneath the mind’s advice and admonishments and connect to the intelligence of our bodies and our breath. We deliberately create space from the mind’s relentless and well-meaning chirping (“You’re going to fall!” “You can’t kick into handstand!” “You’re not strong enough!”) in order to pry open some cracks in our armor.
We create space for self-surprise.
There is a part of my practice where my mind jumps in. It’s when I’m practicing handstand. My mind starts its whispering, “You can’t.” While I can’t silence my mind, I can choose to lovingly question its certitude. I focus on my breath. I set my mind’s chatter aside. And then I practice. Some days I fall, and some days I defy my own expectations. By focusing on our breath and letting our body find its own intelligence, we can begin to open the doorway to new possibilities. After all, our mind can only advise based on what it’s already experienced or imagined; new vistas are unimaginable and beyond its scope. The only way to blow our own mind is to create an opportunity to transcend our known experience.
In our yoga practice, we experience new possibilities in the form of physical poses (inversion, forward fold, arm balance). We may say, “I never knew I could do that!” Ultimately, however, the pose itself doesn’t matter. The pose simply reveals the truth: we don’t need to believe everything that we think.
How might this insight change our world off the mat? When our mind’s cautionary tales are exposed as fiction, suddenly new vistas emerge that are beyond our imagination.
So, say no to self-limiting beliefs.
And say yes to wild possibility.
Have you recently opened the doorway to new possibilities? Maybe as a yoga instructor or the owner of a studio? Whatever it may be, we at HealingRadiusPro would love to hear about it in the comment section below!