Practice Persistent Patience

Change irritation to appreciation. Patience doesn’t just happen, but must be cultivated. It is all a matter of attitude. ~ Kentetsu Takamori


How often do we get discouraged when something does not happen when we want it to happen? How many times do we flat out quit because we cannot see the results?
Over the course of my teaching journey, I can’t tell you how often students have come to me and said, “I have been on my mat for over a year now and I still can’t stand on my head,” or when you flow through a vinyasa, you make it look so easy and smooth; mine is clumsy and difficult.
We are reminded countless times that like life, the physical asana practice, is a process that is cultivated over time. We learn that the true practice is how to “flow” with the fact that we still cannot stand on our head “yet” and that we have difficulties moving through a vinyasa. We learn to have patience with what we cannot yet see.
Let’s take our demands out of the precious gifts. Let’s cultivate a healthy dose of waiting for what we cannot yet see. Let’s trust the process. Spring is a time of renewal and revitalization. Let us renew and revitalize our way of being in patience. Just as we ground down into our hands and feet and set our gaze to one physical point in downward facing dog, let us ground down into sitting with what is and what isn’t – thus practicing persistent patience.
With snow having fallen into late March, coupled with days where there’s an absence of sun – it can make for a disappointing or discouraging day. Feelings of impatience and restlessness are likely rising.
These, however, are just feelings, not facts. Spring does indeed take flight, the flowers do indeed bloom, the trees do indeed bud, and the grass does indeed sprout.
We exercise strength while waiting for what we yearn for most. May the mat practice, our community, and our breath, help us persist onward no matter what we see or how we feel; no matter what presents itself or does not yet present itself.