I had one of those amazing chats with a student before teaching a class today. Starting out speaking about New Year’s Resolutions, she had the keen observation in her own life that she doesn’t set any – but tries to lead an active and healthy lifestyle regardless. The conversation slowly shifted to intention setting and how I set a daily, weekly, monthly, and now yearly intent. She liked the idea of that and we started to brainstorm yearly intents.
She almost immediately came to being more present in her life – in conversations to make eye contact and being genuinely interested; in yoga to follow her breath more and feel through postures. From these points, she started talking about taking a memory, much like we take photos, but instead of filing it away to maintain the memory and the feeling it elicited.
Without realizing it, she stepped into two major components of Forrest Yoga and two of the multiple reasons I’ve been drawn so closely to it. In Forrest, we teach active feet and active hand to remain present and to not mentally check out of poses, which is incredibly easy to do (speaking from experience). As we learn to remain present on the mat, we slowly begin to apply this practice to life outside of a studio. And with that, we begin to see ourselves and our relationships change.
The other concept she spoke of is seeing Beauty. Beauty in this instance is capitalized, illustrating the power in capturing that moment and holding it in an esteemed spot. I typically use #nothingforgranted when a moment of Beauty makes it’s presence known in my life.
I’m challenging my students this week to think of yoga based intents for 2015 – where can they take their mat and where can their mat take them. But what if we also take these two principles off the mat – being present and seeing Beauty – and apply them to our daily lives? It can start with putting your phone down while talking to a friend and capturing the Beauty in the interaction. Easy, right?