Peace and Quiet?
When I started to practice yoga at the gym, I was one of those people who simply could not let go of myself for the relaxation at the end of the class. For what was probably the first couple of years I kept opening my eyes and looking around thinking “is everyone really just letting go and lying there thinking of nothing??” Now of course I know it isn’t true and that they may have been thinking but perhaps observing their thoughts rather than engaging with their curiosity like I was.
I progressed to being able to lie without peeking and to let go but kept being interrupted by the class next door (Les Mills body Pump has some base going let me tell you!) and it irritated me no end..until weeks after weeks it became a part of the relaxation routine for me and I was able to ignore the external stimuli.
After that I moved on to being able to nearly (but not quite) fall asleep as my body mind and breath were waiting for that eventual release that was part of the relaxation at the end of the class.
And now it is almost like a switch. My whole being is so used to the fact that there will be a period of savasana at the end of my practise (whether it be 5 breaths or 5 mins) that it physically recuperates and mentally lets go.
Sometimes there are more thoughts floating around in my head and sometimes more outside distractions. I share my workspace with my husband who taps at his computer all day and our house is pretty open planned which means that if I do practise when he is cooking tea for our boy then their conversations or games can float upstairs to me.
Those “distractions” are rather comforting and have also nudged me towards being more present and mindful. Because if thoughts wander around (and they will), I simply say “later” in my mind to not interact with them. And if the sounds of family giggles, neighbour taking the bins in or an ambulance on a job reach my ears then there is nothing I can do about it but to accept that they are/were there and move back to the awareness of my breath or mantra.
And if you have ever felt similarly to what has been described above during your relaxation time, remember that there will always be external and internal diversions to contend with. And that if you linger around those it is ok. Maybe tomorrow you won’t. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Do keep coming back to your mat as it is what matters most.