The other day I had a conversation with a student who was feeling really frustrated with his practice. I could see him struggling during class, and really allowing his frustrations to get the best of him. When we spoke after, he told me what was going on with him and how he perceived himself to be “too weak” or “too small” compared to the other people in the class. He compared his size and body type to me stating that I was the smallest person in the room. I reminded him that while I may have been the smallest, I was also probably one of the strongest. My point in saying this to him is that strength has nothing to do with size, or what your body looks like. Strength comes from within, it’s a state of mind.
Strength is how you show up and face challenges. Do you retreat into your fear and frustration? Or do you greet challenges head on with a willingness to learn from your weaknesses? Strength is resilience, strength is perseverance. Strength is dedication to your goals, and cultivating the discipline to achieve them.
Strength doesn’t only manifest itself on our mats through chatarungas and side planks. Strength also comes in moments of stillness. Having the strength to surrender into feelings of discomfort, to soften, to fold into yourself, is just as powerful. We all carry around attachments that we’ve built up throughout our lives- and all of these connections, and emotions they start to build up inside of us like a heavy boulder we carry on our backs. Strength is being able to give yourself permission to set that heavy weight aside, to be present only with yourself and with each passing moment.
How can you practice building a stronger and more resilient attitude?