What is your Secret Yoga Behavior (SYB)?
In honor of the new moon, I am mooning you…figuratively, of course. You know, I’m showing you some of the goods.
Remember that episode of Sex and the City (I know you watched SATC as obsessively as I did…and still do!) where Carrie and the girls all fess up to their SSB — Secret Single Behavior? Carrie likes to eat crackers with jam while looking at fashion magazines in the kitchen. Charlotte likes to stare at her pores for hours. Etc. Well, I have some yoga secrets to share.
My Secret Yoga Behaviors:
- I secretly say “Meow!” and “Moo!” in my mind when I practice Cat/Cow. I have a strong compulsion to do it aloud, but it hasn’t overpowered me yet.
- My mat has to be perfectly aligned with the lines on the wood floor. If it isn’t, I can’t focus.
- In tough poses, you’d think I was playing a heated game of bball against my biggest rival. Only thing is, I’m shit-talking myself. “Suck it up, mo fo! What kind of a %*$$@ are you?!” I’m working on this.
- I like to wear my favorite slippers when I’m in Viparita Karani (Legs-Up-the-Wall pose) at home. So snuggly!
- Sometimes I write blog posts in my mind when I’m supposed to be practicing and paying attention in class. :P
- I stealthily feel up my own booty in yoga class to see if it’s getting tighter.
- I fantasize about bursting out in a brilliant cussing storm during a silent moment in class, then blaming it on Tourette’s.
Now come to meeee. Look into my eyes. Tell me your yoga secrets!
photo credit: guitarsolutions.net
1. Even though you’re told to shut the ego up, it’s still very much alive and kicking when I put my right hand here and my left hand there and my feet over here, while I could do only half of this in the previous practice.
2. I also think sometimes “aw that would make a good blog post – wait, how many breaths am I in the pose? shit, let’s pretend I got the right number”.
3. Does my bum look good in these capri pants?
4. “why is she instructing us this way? I prefer that way. I wouldn’t do this if I was teaching” – but then I realize that I’m not teaching, and just do as instructed, because somehow my brain intervened and told me “shut up, you might learn something here”.
5. Finished the Hatha Yoga Pradipika – there is no way, you hear me, no way I am practicing all this stuff (am thinking of certain types of dhauti). But some of them I will.
I might as well stop there, bad bad yogini!
• Sometimes, in class, I pretend that I’m a star yogini filming my own yoga dvd..especially with poses that I struggle with. It sort of makes me pull it together… lol
• If my stomach growls during savasana, I like to pretend it’s thunder.
• I get nervous when we do partner work, if my feet haven’t been pedicured.
• teaching- I sometimes think…”they hate me, they think this sucks”
There I said it! Whew… ;)
I totally have to line up my mat with the floor boards – however since I’ve been practicing without a mat it’s been less distracting.
I also have to fight the very strong compulsion to burst out in loud song in class – I do sing along with some of my music though when I’m teaching.
I feel so much better knowing I’m not the only one being all OCD about the mat and wood floor lines.
I sometimes don’t take my own advice – certain that if I could do this pose yesterday I can force myself into it today.
Sometimes when I teach, I zone out and have no idea how long I left people in a pose, so I just have to wing it on the 2nd side.
I can’t just DO savasana… I build class plans and teach them in my head during that time.
Hah! This post (and the comments) made me giggle.
I totally have a tendency to cuss myself out in my head during a really difficult pose. I also like to stare at myself in a mirror while doing different poses, to make sure that I don’t look fat in the pose. Whoops…
What a great post! Love it! You ladies listed some wonderful SYB’s, many of which I could identify. Here are some of mine:
-Making grocery lists in my head. Maybe it’s because I am usually practicing on an empty stomach (and thus, hungry) and I think about food, which leads to grocery shopping? This is such a bad habit! But at least I never forget to buy oatmeal (and toilet paper) :)
-Thinking that I would balance better if the bunion on my right food wasn’t there. I don’t have one on my left foot and seem to do standing poses better on that leg.
-Sending mental and silent threats via my head to the teacher if his/her counting is off or way too slooooowwww…for my liking. “Hello, we should be on 17 by now, not 3…geez! Stop adjusting students and just count!”
Glad I got these out in the open…and now I don’t feel so alone…thanks ladies!
when I go take another class and there’s a good sequence or pose going on, I think about how I can fit it into my classes :)
I am so guilty of your #5. I get a lot of inspiration for blog posts in class (all that pranayama breathing), start writing them in my head, and then start obsessing that I’ll forget the idea before class is over. I’d love to bring a note pad into class (or tape recorder) – but think that would be frowned upon! ;)
I’ve been known to run out of class to my car to frantically write down all the notes and thoughts I had during class. So much for being in the present!
I also have been known to cuss out the instructor in my head if we are holding a difficult pose too long. And the teachers that have us do too much abdominal work – I won’t even tell you what I’m thinking about them.
I have been known to do my morning yoga routine at home in my PJ’s!
BTW – absolutely love SATC – which character are you most like??
Once I telegraphed “i hate you” to the teacher for making us hold warrior two for too damn long. And she looked right at me and acknowledged it. Even though I hadn’t really said it. Hmm.
I’m gonna meow/moo to myself tonight. :-)
Hmm…I feel like I have two separate lists here–syb as a student, and syb as a teacher.
As a student, I’m constantly fighting the urge to jump off my mat and adjust fellow class members. I zone out and critique my pedicure (it’s almost always bad!). I’m suddenly afraid to practice headstand and forearm balance in the middle of the room. I hate standing big toe balance, revolved triangle, and revolved half moon and I get pissed off when they show up in a class. I start sequencing classes based on what I like or don’t like about a class, especially if I think an instructor is sort of boring or talking too much, or, frankly, if I’m just bored. I get wrapped up in the lyrics of songs I dislike. They haunt me. Fuck you, Winnie the Pooh! (A song referencing WTP has haunted me this past month.) I critique the teacher even as I continue to come to her class because deep down I love it. I wonder if anyone else notices how much I think I stink or how funky my hair looks (It’s curly. Curly hair is crazy. You think you want it, but really, you don’t). I get a little giddy when I finally nail an arm balance with which I’ve struggled. And then next time I fall on my face.
As a teacher, I know you want to line your mat up with the floorboards, so I want to tell you to turn it diagonally. Just because. As I’m teaching, I also think mid-class, “This class sucks. I feel sorry for them. It seemed so good when I planned it. Oh well.” Or, “Shit! I can’t tell my left from my right! I’m a remedial preschooler! Fuck it! They fucking know what I mean.” But mostly, I think, “Sweet beautiful souls, thank you for sharing this time with me. Maybe I’ll take one second of yuck away from your life by being here today. I hope so.”
And therein exist my thoughts on this for today. Check with me tomorrow and know they’ll be totally different, because I will not be pinned down!
I think I’ve got you all. Not only do I make sure I line my mat up on the lines, I insist, my students DO NOT!
I often forget my left and from my right. So do the students. I know start with one side and then prompt the class to go to the other side. lol.
I totally plan dinner during savasana. Everytime. When the teacher says ‘relax’ my head says ‘chicken sausage with kale…no wait, acorn squash!’
Love this! My SYB:
I go to hot yoga & hot vinyasa classes so I can cry and pretend that it is just sweat.
I totally blog in my head, too.
Whew! Feels good to get that off my chest! ;)
I’m completely OCD in class, which is probably why Iyengar yoga suits me so well (lining up props JUST SO). I won’t take bright colored blankets from the pile because I think the color is distracting while practicing- always go for muted or earth tones. DEF line up the mat with the floor boards. I often fall asleep in savasana, then a big twitch jolts me awake, and I look around to see if anyone else noticed.
1. I talk shit to myself in difficult poses too.
2. I think about what Im going to have for dinner or a good glass of wine.
3. I sing to myself especially in forward folds.
4. I check out my pedi to make sure its still ok when I’m supposed to be concentrating.
5. I too have to have my mat lined up proper or it just doesnt work well.
2,3,5,6,7 – yep, yep, yep, yep, and yep
OMG! I totally have to line up my mat or the world may come to an end! Not so bad unless I’m teaching the class and a student has their mat all jacked up…oy…I’m like “don’t they notice that? doesn’t that bother them!?” bad yogini, bad teacher with OCD! ;P
As a student:
1. Mind wandering. “What shall I have for dinner? What’s on TV? That girls got great abs. Stop it, you’re supposed to be concentrating”.
2. OCD. I want to use that mat, that colour block, be near the window, wear my lucky yoga pants.
3. Anger/Shame. God I’m rubbish at this pose.
As a teacher:
Exactly the same as above but also:
God they hate this class I can just tell. Help. I bet none of them come back.
Oh god 10 complete beginners, that’s my lesson plan out the window.
Which side are we doing now? Left or right?
a surfer dude once shouted out in class “ive never been so close to sucking my own d**k”! im sure that this must go on in the brains of some males! note: this is just for a giggle, no offense ment!
I make up my own pose names, not laughing is sometimes harder than the pose itself :) and one day I swear I’m going to make a fart noise during the bikram Utkatasana/awkward series.
Most of the time I practice after work in a class, and I guess I’m self conscious, because I shower BEFORE class, then if i get sweaty, which is typical, I have to shower after. So that’s three showers in one day!
What a great post! This is like therapy. Total check on the mat lining up. I absolutely need to color coordinate my two blankets AND the blocks I’m going to place on top of them. I make up names for poses during class. Woman-giving-birth made me laugh out loud and I can never look at that pose any other way now.
Haha ha! I’m glad i’m not the only one who is totally fixated on lining up their mat with the floor seams.
And tooting. I worry about letting a wee one slip out of my downward dog. And then if i’m holding it in, i try to convince myself that i’m really just working out a ‘deep muscle group’. And then i start giggling.
Most of the above -and. . . I have to have “my spot”. I usually arrive early to make sure I get it.
Sometimes I put on a cute outfit and practice just so I can snap an inner selfie for Instagram during after practice yoga playtime. (Shameful.)