Overexposure Into Yoga Culture

Well, I may talk myself into some trouble on this one, but this is no new thing for me.

However, the other day I was chatting with a client, and we were both giggling over our shared anti-conformist attitudes. She works in the art world; I create art. When we were talking about a recent event in the area, I told her how I went and how disenchanted I was with the scene – while it was supposed to be about supporting the arts, it was really more about drinking and “being seen.”

Which, of course, there is nothing wrong with drinking and being seen. I enjoy both of those things. I was just slightly annoyed at how easily things seem to turn into excuses to distract ourselves rather than focus on the issue that brought us together in the first place.

For a while I was walking around feeling frustrated; then I realized that this attitude is what pushes me talking me out of business in the first place. I tend to have a “it’s only cool if select few like it” attitude, even though it’s not applicable across all dimensions. Example: I love Taylor Swift. Everyone else does, too. I don’t dislike her simply because everyone else adores her, but that does become true across other dimensions in my life.

And, quite frankly, this attitude is very maladaptive for me. It turns me away from events, people, and situations that would very likely help my cause of self-employment, but I shun them because too many people like it. How annoying is that? One day I quite clearly talked myself out of a client, who was asking me questions – not only about exercise – but about my specific style of training. This person was quite clearly showing an interest, not just in training, but in training with me, and I sent them off with references.

UGHHH.

Anyway, I will tiptoe into this next point lightly, lest people call me a hypocrite and tell me to feel shame. I love yoga, I truly do. And I love that it is getting recognition and people are talking about it. I love that yoga is more widespread and studios are popping up everywhere to truly share the love.

But there are sometimes that I am in yoga overload and I just need to get out. When I went through training, I was fully exposed to how truly transformational yoga can be – I had been exposed to it already, but it took it to a whole new level. I loved it. And I was obsessed with it. It was no longer a tool to help me cope with the struggles of life – yoga WAS my life.

And so I immersed myself in every tiny little yoga everything. A billion yoga books. A trillion yoga articles read online. Daily meditations, daily inspirations, daily practice. Trainings, conferences, workshops. And follow EVERYONE on instagram and facebook.

You know how there can be too much of a good thing?

Well yes, I’ve had enough.

Recently I’ve been unfollowing and unliking people on instagram and facebook who, really, don’t contribute much to my life other than striking a perfectly posed yoga shot with some fancy diddly quote that’s like a horoscope – it could be applicable to anyone, anytime. Sure, your pose is pretty, but so is EVERYONE ELSE’s. I don’t need to see 98 photos of handstands on instagram with fancy quotes before I actually get to someone’s account that’s real. Someone who posts real shit about real life that isn’t hashtag everything. They’re posting to share with family and friends – not to get more people to follow them. WHERE HAVE THE HUMANS GONE??? THEY ARE LOST INSIDE PRETZEL SHAPED BODIES AND FANCY INSTAGRAM ACCOUNTS.

Whew. Okay I said I would tread lightly, and that wasn’t it. Anyway – call me a hypocrite, because if you look on my instagram you’ll seeyoga poses and everything else. It’s all about balance.

The good news is, I still love yoga. My overexposure into yoga “culture” (which I would argue, is more consumerism than culture) hasn’t ruined the actual practice, which I need. Yoga is still awesome. And you should still do it.

And you should also overimmerse yourself in it too, because everyone does that. It’s like playing a song you love so many times on repeat that eventually you hate music. But you always come back to it after a little time away.

The good thing about yoga though, is that it’s about balance. A little bit of this, a little bit of that. A little bit of yoga poses, a little bit of actual breath oriented practice. And then we get on with our lives.

About the Author

Posted by

Amie is a human. She teaches yoga and writes and writes about yoga. She is not perfect, and she embraces her imperfections and writes about them here: www.amyisahuman.com.

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Blog, On Yoga

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