This week I met a young guy at the yoga studio. He just tried his very first Easy Flow Yoga Class. I have never took such a class, but I'm guessing it's like a slow Power Yoga Class with less poses, more breaths per posture and a teacher who takes it down a notch (it = whatever you think it is). But again, I never took such a class so I don't really know. The guy told me he'd liked the class, but that he'd had some trouble with some poses. He showed me Balasana. Child's Pose. I repeated the mantra 'don't judge and don't have an opinion about everything' in my head. He asked me how he could prepare for next week's class.
'Meaning?' I asked.
'Could you give me study materials about the postures? So I can study them and practice at home. Then in my next class I will do better.'
I told him about The Good Old Internet and how it is filled with instruction video's and blogs about yoga. We chatted some more. I told him about how I started prating yoga and what it has brought me. He told me about his recent burnout. It was already his second one in only a few years. I felt sorry for him. I felt sorry for him even more when he told me he was 28. His perfectionism got a hold of him every time.
'Ah. And you just asked me how to improve your yoga. So you want to be perfect in yoga as well?'
He looked at me. I smiled. He smiled back.
'You're right,' he said. 'What the hell. I do it all the time. I want to be the best. I want to be the best in everything.'
'I can relate,' I said. 'I have the same problem. I have this new job and I know nothing. I want to know everything. Immediately. I don't want to ask questions, I want to have the answers myself. I am afraid of losing Marichyasana D, I can't stand it I can't do Bhujapidasana the right way without falling on my butt.'
'What are you talking about?' he asked.
'Nothing,' I said. 'Yoga is not about being the best, about being the strongest, the most flexible. It is about what's happening on the inside. It's about making better choices in your life.'
'That's exactly what I need to do.'
I felt I wanted to chose something. I cycled home and I went online. I bought this new and not very cheap Manduka Prolite Limited Edition Affinity Yoga Mat. Yoga helps me to make healthy choices, to practice awareness, to ease my mind, to teach me about spirituality, to show me that what makes me happy is inside of me. I will never get a gold medal for being able to bind in Marichyasana D. I will never be better in Bhujapidasna even if I wear the most expensive yoga pants. But after more than two years of practicing on my damaged and cheap yogamat (it was for free, it came with my first yoga member ship) I decided my body is worth a real Manduka yoga mat.