Benefits of Sadhana

WITH YOU, I BREATHE: a forty day yoga column

#26: Benefits of Sadhana

I’ve started writing again. That kind of serious writing that involves revision and sending it to my friends who send it back with comments and edits. It’s the kind of writing I most like but haven’t done in a long time.

I’ve been doing this sadhana, this forty-day yoga column and I hate it. I hate writing about yoga.  I research golgi tendons and spindle cells and think how in the world I’m going to make interesting because it’s really very matter-of-fact.

I like your sadhana, my yoga teacher said.

I hate it, I said. I was bored by day twelve. I hate doing the same thing for forty days.

But that’s the point, she said.

I looked at her. She was right.

Sadhana is not supposed to be a good time, nor is it supposed to be easy. But there are rewards. Which is why I do the forty day practice.

Firstly, I learn how to commit to something for an extended period of time. Secondly, I learn how to focus on a project and see it through to completion. Thirdly, I learn how to be determined and disciplined because every day I move pass the personal resistance. I learn how to apply this commitment, focus, and discipline to other projects that are unrelated to my forty-day practice.

But there is an unexpected reward in relation to this particular sadhana. As I write about yoga on my blog, I write stories elsewhere. Instead of posting first drafts of stories that go nowhere–I mean, the first drafts just stay there on the page as self-indulgent and overly personal posts–I write first drafts, revise and edit. I send them to friends and revise some more. I watch my stories transform into something else, something better.

In doing so, I see the potential of a first draft becoming something else and don’t want to waste that kind of potential on a blog post. After this forty day practice, I may choose to write another forty-day column, entirely focused on yoga anatomy, just so I can write stories elsewhere. fishes and honey may become one of the most boring blogs in the universe, boring even to me.

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