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The Fast Lane to Disappointment

We often hear what a "fast-paced" society we live in, and that's true. But it's as much one of impatience as it is of fast pace. Eighteen-year-olds drive fifty-thousand dollar cars, and newly engaged couples boast multi-karat diamond rings. With lines of credit and credit cards galore, big ticket items are nothing but a Gold Card app and a fifty-two cent stamp away.

And maybe there's nothing wrong with that, not inherently. You take out a loan, enjoy the fun stuff, and pay the loan back. No big deal. The problem is the impact that accessibility has on the value of the item obtained. It loses its worth.

Without any space between "wanting" and "getting," there's no room for your desire to manifest in a way that stimulates action. We simply wish, and it appears. Nothing changes; there’s no learning. Without learning there is no growth, and without growth there is no . . . well, no yoga.

Consider the following:

You step on the yoga mat for the very first time and your heels hit the ground in Downward Facing Dog. The humility that arises in the beginner's mind, the calibration and processing that occurs as the brain shifts gears to accommodate these unfamiliar shapes and movements, the sweat and determination that are the result of your disciplined commitment to "achieving" Downward Dog are all missing. Most importantly, your rock solid proof that nothing is impossible, no matter how hard it might seem, disappears. The practice is flat.

Of course, one body type finds challenge in a pose where another experiences ease; that's obvious. And the multitude of postures available ensures we can each experience growth at any level—If we so desire.

Don't rob yourself of the gratitude and self-confidence that are the gifts of a goal reached in your practice. Don't hasten the growth and wisdom incurred as you move from one stage to the next. They say that yoga's a journey, and it is. Know your destination, put in the effort, practice patience, and enjoy the ride.

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