One Headstand Away From Imperfection

Author: Angela Morales

Practice: often defined as doing one activity or another with some semblance of frequency and consistency in an attempt to improve said practice. 

“Practice makes perfect.”

In any mindfulness class–whether it be meditation, or yoga, or any variation thereof your attendance will often be called “your practice.” One of the most fundamental and foundational principles of yoga is accepting that you come to the mat with an understanding that there is always something to learn and improve on in your practice. Therefore, never really reaching a state of “perfection.”

But, there’s the rub:

When you first start writing your name, you practice and practice so you learn your letters and and the right curvature of each one.

When you play a sport, you practice diligently, consistently, frequently in an attempt to perfect (or at the very least significantly improve it).

Most of our lives, we have been told that if we just keep at it that our practice will pay off and we will–in a sense–get to the point of perfecting the craft, the art, the sport, etc.

I have been practicing a headstand now for the better part of a year.

I still can’t do it.

I have broken several things attempting to do the damn thing.  And, it’s driving me insane. There are probably hundreds of gifs that could be made of flailing and yelping as I tumble back to gravity as quickly as I get to that final toe off the ground.

“You’re so close!” my yoga teacher tells me… every single week.

I have struggled with the concept that I may never actually be able to do this and that I must continue to practice with an acceptance of possibly never getting there, and that acceptance doesn’t mean I’m giving up.

Hell, I knew I was never going to be good at math and I accepted that real quick and haven’t looked back since!

Perhaps practice could take on the new meaning that practice is well…just that. Practice, is something you do with intentionality and at the end of it, know that you did your best and your body saved you the perfection you think you needed to achieve.

Alright, headstand you win, but I’ll always win when it comes to corpse pose.

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