I’ve had a wrist injury 10 years ago. It made me quit playing the violin and made me lose trust in my body. I didn’t even realize – only in hindsight – that this injury made me feel weak, that it made me think my body is not capable of things I didn’t even consider twice, before the injury. I remember avoiding putting weight on it, even avoiding using my left hand, if not absolutely necessary.
Even after I’ve recovered, that pattern stuck with me.
I’ve started practicing yoga a while after my injury and I’ve always avoided arm balances, handstands and everything that could drain my wrists. I always wanted to do crows and wheels, but only practiced half-heartedly. And I also realized, that I used this injury as an excuse. I was hiding behind it, for it is easier to say ‘my body doesn’t allow me to do this’, than ‘Hey, I’m new to this and I’m not good at it’ or even ‘I’m not new to this, but I’m not good at it’. I was fascinated by that insight, and of course a little bit ashamed of it as well.
And than there came a turning point, about half a year ago. Mid practice, I decided that I no longer wanted to be the victim of those patterns, of my past, of my thought-carousel. I allowed myself to be a beginner, to be not good at it, to fail and fall (over and over again).
And eventually over time, my arm-balancing practice became more steady, more balanced and I gained confidence.
Realizing the difference between what doesn’t serve my body and what is just thought patterns, took quite some practice, as this can be easily confused.
The closer I listened to what my body, my ego, my thoughts really told me, the easier it was to listen to what feels good and the better I got to know myself.
It felt like with the growing confidence, the strength came back into my wrists, into my body and by now I feel even ‘good enough’ to teach those Asanas.
Is there a thing, that you would like to do, but are too afraid of trying? Because you are not good enough in this or that, not strong enough, not tough enough, not adventurous enough, not educated enough, not intelligent enough? (I could go on with the the list of ‘not enough’s’ for longer). And of course the arm-balancing example is just one out of many situations in my life, where my thoughts keep tricking me into not believing in myself, but now that I’m aware of it, it is easier to decide against that harmful self-talk.
One thing is for sure – you will always find a reason not to do something.
But if you look the other way, you might as well find 10 reasons why it’s worth trying.