Try Setting a Fun Goal for 2012

How many of your New Year’s resolutions in the past years created stress a frustration when trying to achieve them?  I personal have set some really frustrating resolutions in previous years including no shoe shopping for a year.  Not fun.

This year, why not set a goal instead of a frustrating resolution?  Goals give us the opportunity for practice and discipline while allowing much more flexibility and forgiveness than a hard a fast resolution.  Also, goals are measurable and can be usually broken down into smaller goals.

 For instance, a few months ago I set a personal goal is to achieve full king pidgeon pose, a very challenging asana requiring signficant flexibility in the legs, spine, chest and arms. Knowing this would take months, I looked forward to each new variation building up to the full posture.   On my journey, I started with Pidgeon.  In this phase, I enjoyed some intense stretching, increasing the front hip’s ability to externally rotate while lengthening the opposite side’s one joint hip flexors.  

 

 

My next phase was to begin working towards a deep forward fold, increasing the flexibility of my gluteals and hip flexors while enjoying a grounding sensation.  Eventually, this become a position of comfort and rest.

 

 

 

My next step towards King Pidgeon was to add a quadreceps stretch, very gently at first to my upright Pidgeon.  This step requires much patience as the quadriceps is a large muscle that must be respected.  Eventually, my quadriceps gained enough flexibility to now allow both the one and two joint hip flexors to easily stretch, turning the posture into an enjoyable posture.

 

This evening was the first time I was able to achieve full Queen Pigeon, pose!  I thrilled and excited to make such a break through during my last yoga practice of 2011.

Now I have yet to achieve full King Pidgeon, but I have been really enjoying myself during this process as a work towards this goal.  definitely more fun that I have had in the pas working towards resolutions that ultimately make me feel deprived instead of the growth that I have been able to experience on my journey towards King Pidgeon.  I hope you too can find something joyful to work on as 2012 begins.

Namaste and Happy New Year, Sarah

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