31 Days of Yoga-ish Behavior

It's October, so there's all kinds of 31 Day blog series popping up. It's a fun writing challenge, and you can read more about it here if you are so inclined.  I've done it once in the past, 31 Days of  Yes,where I wrote about saying yes to things I normally wouldn't.  Like running without something chasing me.

However, I haven't even written 31 posts yet this year, so this didn't seem a realistic goal for right now.  Apparently I felt left out though, because I decided to write one post about 31 days of a certain activity.  That's kind of the same, right?

sort of like this.  via

All this started because one of my cherubs asked me what I wanted for my birthday, which is next month.  Immediately I thought, "I want this stupid knot in my shoulders to ease."  As I stopped to think about it, I made a little list for myself.  For my birthday, I want more relax, less grasping at control; more peace, less worry; more joy; less over-analyzing; perhaps most importantly, more strong, less "baby" belly.

And then I thought some more, because that's what I do.  (I can't tell you how many times my mother has told me I think toooooo much.)  Anyway.  These things I want?  They are all things I have the power to give myself - especially in light of the recent changes in our home.

So I started doing either yoga or pilates every day.  (Not the "you are a beautiful flower bending to the goddess" type of yoga, justsoyouknow.)  Stretch, strengthen, breathe.  I told the kids about my gift to myself because they get excited about goals like this and are quite adept at being relentless little reminders.  So multiple times a day I hear, "Mom!  Did you do your yoga yet??"  Excellent!  I'm not strong right now, so I just do what I can.  There's one 30 minute sequence that I just get up and walk away in the middle of.  I can't do all of it, so I take a little coffee break and come back after five minutes.  Drives the kids nuts to skip exercises commanded by the authoritative lady in striped spandex, but I tell them, I'll get there, there's time.  The point is consistency, which is a kind of anchor itself.

Here's the fabulous part.  I've managed to hit every day, even if only for 5 minutes.  Ok, that's not the fabulous part - this is: I went to the chiropractor yesterday and he was making all these approving noises as he checked my spine.  He made a small adjustment and then said I was in good shape.  I told him about my yoga, and he said, "yes, you seemed a lot less tense."  We both agreed this could be due to . . .er . . .the recent decrease in environmental stress factors, but the exercise certainly helped as well.

Stephanie Spence, via


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