Yesterday I decided to listen to my body (and my acupuncturist) and try a class that was more alignment based. After some research into teachers – and schedules – I decided to go to a class right near my house with a teacher whose background is Anusara/Iyengar. She seemed cool. It was at a good time for me. And it was close. So, I figured, what the heck!
The teacher, Laura Conley, was adorable. Like so many people in the yoga community (myself excluded) she oozed energy and happiness.
Being an anusara style class, she started it with a little ‘feel-good’, spiritual talk.
She shared a text that she’d received from her father. It said, “There are dreamers and there are dream-makers.” Laura said, “Today we’re going to be dream-makers in our practice.”
As it pertained to yoga, she talked about how it’s so easy to be passive in the poses; to feel the stretch and to focus only on the stretch and just let other parts, i.e. feet, back leg, hands, etc, hang out. She definitely had a point!
Dandasana (staff pose) is such a prime example of this. It seems like such a boring posture, but if you really engage bandhas, ground the pelvis while reaching the top of the head to the sky, flex the feet, feel the hips moving back while the feet move forward, it can be uber-intense! Or, think about Uttitha Padotanasana. How easy is it to forget about the back leg. Engage it, and it’s a whole new story!
I encourage you to think about the unsung heroes in various poses… and give some lovin’ to the forgotten appendages!
But, then I started thinking about that quote from Laura’s dad and how applicable it is to other parts of life. It’s so easy to complain about situations and to think about what you would really like to be doing. Heck, I’ll be the first to admit I can spend hours looking at what I maybe, kind of, sort of, would like to do with my life, and read about people who are doing that…And, while there may be some benefit in that for at least seeing what’s out there, it’s certainly not getting me any closer to making those dreams a reality.
It also then struck me the similarity between that quote/thought and some of the things Kathy and I have been talking about. (Oh, life, you are ironic, aren’t you?)
Many people, myself included, look for ‘stop gaps’ instead of ‘go-to’s’. They do that because they’re dreaming … thinking something else has got to be better than this. All they’re really doing is living within the dream that someone else created.
They’re letting parts of life become disengaged, thinking that by focusing on one thing, that everything else will fall into place.
Instead, the dream-maker looks at what he/she wants – I mean really looks closely at what he/she wants – and takes the steps to make those wants their own reality. They put 100% into not just thinking about what they want, but taking steps to make those wants happen.
Just as on the yoga mat, when you think about your whole body, your bandhas and your dristi and engage everything, you get the greatest benefit out of the asana. And when you do that the entire time you’re on the mat, you get the greatest benefit out of the practice, which bleeds into creating benefits in other part of your life.
So too in life, if you are actively engaged in the experience of your wants… really, honestly take steps, do the heavy lifting and not just become passive, you can make your dreams come true.
There are dreamers and there are dream-makers. Be a dream-maker!