Friday, July 1, 2011

Life Lessons Learned Watching a Bikram Newbie

The other day, there was a new guy name Frank who showed up for class. Frank did everything wrong. Everything. The underlying cause was that Frank didn't listen. That is usually the cause of the problems facing newbies. While I watched Frank act a fool, Ludacris style, in the front row, I was enlightened with a fair bit of life insight.

1. Many things in life involve steps. Sometimes many steps. To get to step D, you must go through steps A, B, and C. Here is the important part: If you cant do step A well, you best not be moving on to step B. AND you sure as hell better not be trying step C or D. Otherwise, you will either hurt yourself or look like an idiot. It is true in yoga. It is true in regular life. If you don't lock your standing knee, you shouldn't be kicking out with your other leg. If you don't know how to play chords, you shouldn't up on stage playing guitar in concert.

2. Quit making noise. Shut up. Really. Making noise only complicates things. It makes you more hot, more tired, uses up the energy you need, and irritates other people. Same thing in regular life. Whatever metaphorical noise you are making is most likely distracting you from what is really important, and in the process, it is pissing off everyone in your path.

3. Your drama isn't special. No matter how hot you think you are. No matter how much you think you are going to pass out. Your drama has happened before to someone else, and it will happen again. Get over yourself. The minute you do, you will quit making excuses for whatever drama you think you've got going on and actually get to doing yoga or living life.

4. Love your body. If you spend time looking at that parts that you don't like, pondering fat pudgies, or criticizing things here and there, you won't notice how fantastic it is that your body is starting to get deeper into that back bend. You won't see how strong your legs are. You will miss the balance you have developed. If you love your body, you will love yourself.

5. Don't give up. Frank tried to leave the room. The heat is intense. Ask anyone who has tried bikram. But you can make it through. Not all of life is puppies and rainbows (thought having a Luna around thorooughly increases your odds of continuous puppies and rainbows)-- but you can make it through the rough stuff if you are just still and take time to breathe.


  1. Hahahaha Please quit making metaphysical noises.

  2. Great insights. There really are a lot of life lessons to be gleaned from Bikram!

    I'm pretty new to Bikram too - my first time was in March. I can still remember how difficult every little thing was and how IMPOSSIBLE some of the poses were. Luckily I had a great teacher and that made a huge difference as he emphasized each step and that "the posture doesn't start until ..."

    I love that it is difficult, uncomfortable, hot, sweaty, and demands your full effort and mental presence. I love that it crowds out life's worries and obligations for 90 minutes. And I love that I can always improve, somehow, in every class.

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