I was asked this question a while ago: Am I ever in a yoga slump? I answered honestly: I have them every now and then. And I’m in a yoga slump now as well. Trying to get out of it, but this one seems to be harder than the ones before.
I’m not the most disciplined person around. I get distracted very easily. That’s precisely the reason why yoga and meditation (they are one actually) are good for me: they keep me focussed and on track. But for some reason I get lost every now and then.
I can do it for months. Get up early every morning, doing my asanas, pranayama and meditation. Get to work. And in the evening doing some more asanas, my seven minute workout and meditatie a few more minutes, before I go to bed; early.
Being is this rhythm makes me feel great. My mind’s at ease, I get a lot of work done, my body feels fit, I have this constant yoga high and life goes easy. But for some reason I keep losing this rhythm. I go to bed a few times too late and have problems getting up, so I skip a morning. I work on a project, where I don’t really have a place to roll out a mat, I’m in hostels where people wake me up in the middle of the night, coming home drunk and making a lot of noise. Skipping one morning, becomes two mornings, becomes three and before I know it my rhythm is gone.
The reason I started my yoga school years ago was to keep on doing yoga. It worked to an extend. I sold it, because I was teaching so much and doing so much administration and email that I had no time anymore for my own practice. And there is a difference between teaching yoga and doing your own yoga practice. Now I’m on the road I have all the time in the world. As long as I’m teaching at resorts, it’s easy to keep focused and be disciplined. When I”m not, I have to get the motivation out of me. That makes it sometimes hard. It’s easier to have another yogi to train with. Somebody who kicks your ass when you don’t show up early mornings.
The yoga slump I’m in right now is a deep and long one. It started about a month and a half ago. I was still working at Mariposa in Nicaragua. My bed was in the office and I was doing my yoga in the office as well. Even when I was in bed in the evening guests would walk in to ask questions; interrupting my sleep. When I was doing my yoga or sit in meditation at 6 in the morning guest would walk in as well to ask questions. I tried to see it as a challenge, but it broke my rhythm.
When I left Mariposa I spent a lot of time with Nathan in Granada. He had been one of the guests at Mariposa and he was out to have a good time. Like I said, I get easily distracted and got into the ‘backpackers life’ again. The life I have such a sweet memories off. It meant getting out in the evening, having a beer or a cocktail and as a result sleeping in in the morning.
The good thing about it was: it didn’t feel good this time around. It made me realise how much I missed doing yoga. My mind became way more restless again, my back started to hurt again. I had done that life. It was fun the first time; I’m done with it now.
When I decided it was time to be disciplined again I met Romi. She liked to go to bed late as well, liked to sleep in. I sneaked out of bed every now and then to do my early morning yoga, but as I said: I need my sleep. So her rhythm became mine. It was a time I wouldn’t have missed, but it didn’t help me doing yoga.
It didn’t mean I did no yoga at all. I still tried to live by my yamas and niyamas, I went over to Pure a few times a week to do AcroYoga. I did some yoga on my own and some partner yoga with Romi. There was just no regular basis, I stopped meditating and for my mind meditation makes all the difference.
Discipline, the right place (quiet) and the people around you: they can all make or break your yoga rhythm.
I’m trying to get out of my yoga slump these days. I left Granada. Nathan went to the Bahamas, Romi went to Guatemala and I am at my new teaching job in San Isidro. The perfect place to get back to my morning practice. There is not a lot here to do, except for teaching some yoga, doing some bodywork and write. Perfect conditions. There is just one little thing: the daughter of the owner got sick then the owner got sick and now I am sick. Low on energy, no appetite and sleeping most of the day. I meditate again, but I don’t have energy for (a lot of) asanas. I’m normally only sick for a day or two. This is going on for a week now. I’m hoping it’s over soon. Then nothing holds me back to get in my yoga rhythm again. Because what I have learned from this yoga slump is that I feel best when I do my yoga every day.