When I was a junior in college my mind was starting to get the worst of me. My anxiety was so bad that I decided to try yoga. And like all things in my life I was going to do it to the max. I had no money at the time and was sharing a loft in Harlem. When my roommate went on vacation I decided to take charge of the living room floor space so I bought a tape, and practiced Ashtanga yoga, 1.5 hours a day, seven days a week, for a full three months straight.
I have to admit. It truly helped. My mind calmed down and I was able to sleep better. It was great but due to the extremity of my practice I feared the return of my mind sans yoga which would ultimately occur when school started back up.
And it did. When school came around I didn’t have time to handle such an intense routine as part of my regular schedule. Slowly my mind filled with anxiety and my old self returned. I was so frustrated and angry I decided to take a different route.
I went to mental health services at my university and asked for help. My first session didn’t go so well so I left and never went back. Once again, another extreme decision.
I dropped yoga out of my life as well as any initiative to seek psychiatric help. And the spiral of mania swallowed me whole.
Ten years later I picked up yoga again after having my mental breakdown and subsequently opting to receive psychiatric help for life.
I look back and wonder why I needed to be so hard core about things. I look now and am still hard core but at least I have my life experience, my meds, and my part time practice of yoga to try and ease up a bit and rid myself of allowing being hard core to be hard knocks.
Woman doing yoga photo available from Shutterstock
This post currently has
You can read the comments or leave your own thoughts.
Last reviewed: 9 Sep 2012