11 July 2016

Yoga for When You're Angry

Yesterday I did a yoga stretch video, just to mix it up.  Then I did the Let It Go flow again this morning.  I sat and drank my coffee and tried to read, but I was still feeling a bit off.  I was able to (temporarily) let go of what I've been trying to let go of, but I developed a type of anger at myself and began feeling like a horrible human being.  Lots of negative self talk ensued.  I let myself sit and stew for a little bit, but then I decided to get back on the mat and work through Adriene's Yoga for When You're Angry.

I've done this video a few times in the past.  Whenever I come to the mat to do that video, I am always wanting do something really physical to get out my anger and frustration.  Yet, that's not what this video is about.  It has you do a lot of deep breathing in order to calm down.  You acknowledge your anger, your feelings, and then you really get yourself calmed down through the breathing, potentially leaving your mat with a new perspective.

I'm always grateful when I do this video that it's not a super physical sequence because I think that that would just add fuel to the fire.  Slowing down and feeling acknowledged is a much more peaceful and pleasant and probably constructive way of dealing with the anger.  Just like with the Let It Go flow, there typically isn't a whole lot that you can do to change a situation except changing your perspective.  When I get angry, I usually primarily just want to be acknowledged because there isn't a real solution except to change myself.

I love that this video exists because it feels like a lot of the time people act as though yogis aren't supposed to get angry.  I even find myself getting caught in this.  Recently I spent some time with someone whose yoga classes I've attended in the past and I found myself thinking that she never seems to be in a bad mood, that she's always so upbeat and cheerful.  But I'm sure she must get angry sometimes; she must feel wretched sometimes.  She's human--she must.  And that's OK.  The problem isn't in getting angry; the problem is in how you deal with the anger.  Doing something constructive versus doing something destructive.

I'm glad I chose to do something constructive, like getting on my mat for an additional 20 minutes.  I breathed it out and am at the moment feeling quite a bit better.  I may be wretched, but that's OK as long as I make the attempt to deal with my wretched moments in a more positive way.

In fact, I think I need to start doing the whole count to five before reacting thing, at least in certain situations.  Breathe in, breathe out, see the good in others and myself, and let it go.


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