My daughter and I attended a Hatha Yoga competition at my home studio yesterday. I was very excited to be there, as my yoga buddy J. was one of the competitors. I didn't know until it started that two of my teachers were competing too!
The whole experience was inspiring. Yoga champ and teacher Ida R. gave a little talk and what she had said gave me a different perspective about competition. Before I continue, let me give you a little background about my level of competitiveness.
I went to high school in the Philippines. The education system there is pretty much moulded by the American way. Therefore, school sports teams are VERY COMPETITIVE. We have rival schools. We competed in cheering competitions--yes, complete with the uniforms with short skirts and fluffy pom-poms. We didn't compete FOR FUN. It was all for the glory of the Alma Mater.
Going back to Ida's speech, she mentioned how a competition may seem to be out of place in yoga. What she said next inspired me: It is not so much a competition against the other competitor, but more so it is a competition against YOURSELF. Asking the question, "How CAN I do that?" instead of saying, "Oh, I can't do THAT!"
A lot of people are scared to try Bikram Yoga, because they are concerned about what the other people in the room would think of them, how they may not measure up to the level of others who have been practicing a long time. In reality you only have yourself to answer to.
I have always struggled with performing in front of a lot of people, especially during a sporting event. I seem to crumble during the day of competition. Seeing those nine yogis compete yesterday, being so composed and determined to do the best they can provided me with the inspiration to consider competing next year. Now I am faced with the task of getting my practice back on track again. I have a year to prepare. I will take it one practice at a time.
Good night, Mommy. I love you.