There’s really no place in our yoga practice for anxiety, but sometimes it creeps its way in. For example, we might find that we dread a certain pose, perhaps a balancing pose, or navasana, or that bind in marichyasana D is still giving us a hard time, or we worry about remembering our Ashtanga sequence if we haven’t kept up with our practice, and the anxiety that leads up to that pose or that practice steals energy away from what we are doing at the present moment.
There’s no need to be anxious, but that is easier said than done. Here’s one way to eliminate anxiety. We can work to pay attention to only what we are doing in the present moment and let go of the outcome. Whether in our yoga practice or in any situation, the more focused on the present we are, the less time and space there is to become anxious. Do what needs to be done and move on.
This takes serious practice – staying present – and that is the work of our yoga and meditation practice. It is constant effort, and we must remind ourselves again and again to come back to where we are now and what we are doing. It’s not always easy, but to do this is to be free. Diligent practice = freedom.