How Your Attitude Affects Your Yoga Practice

Contributor: Ava Pendl
Photographer: Saffron & Sage
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How Your Attitude Affects Your Yoga Practice

“Attitude is everything,” is one of those overused sayings that we’ve all had jammed into our conscious. But, how does it become everything? Where does it start and where does take over? We wake up every morning with an attitude – good or bad – and from there we go about our day. It controls how we communicate with others, ourselves, and how we approach our yoga practice. Attitude can make or break you. It’s the one thing illuminating or clouding your path.

Baron Baptiste, the founder of Baptiste Institute, wrote in his book, Perfectly Imperfect, the two ways that we can show up to our yoga mat and life. We either show up as a yes or as a no. This concept may seem black and white. You may say, “What about all the other emotions you can feel, it’s not that straightforward,” but it is. 

The attitude of yes and no carry two very different energies and within the energies is where we find growth or resistance. Yes gives us room for opportunity and for possibility. On the other hand, no tends to shut everything out leaving us complacent and in our comfort zone. 


The Power of Yes

When we carry the energy of yes, we immediately are opening ourselves up for expansion and manifestation begins. This attitude is the first tool you need to create your own reality. Showing up to your mat as a yes drives your confidence, your focus, and your willingness to learn and explore your practice. Maybe with this attitude you’re finally able to nail that tripod headstand or drop into your meditation with ease. 

The starting point of all creation, the starting point of any change that you wish to manifest, is picturing the desired outcome in your mind. The only way to see that picture is to begin with the attitude of yes.

The Detriment of No

If we, in turn, carry the negative energy of no, we approach our mat with stubbornness and resistance. This could be a day you felt tired and immediately began making excuses for yourself. Maybe you didn’t even make it to your mat or you made it, but have a bad attitude. Each pose feels out of whack and your focus is all over the place. This energy takes away from the practice you’ve grown to love and stops growth in its tracks. 

Our thoughts become things, so you can see how influential it is for us to show up as a yes rather than a no if we want to continue down a path of achievement.

Off The Mat

Asana is only one of the limbs of yoga and our attitude extends much further than the four corners of a mat. For many of us, the practice of yoga began in a studio and has transformed into how we approach our lives. By taking this same energy of willingness, our frequency vibrates with enthusiasm that we can pass on to other areas of our lives as well as people surrounding us. In this age of evolution, we have the ability to shape the world around us that all begins with our approach. 

For example, if you find no pleasure in your job you may begin each day wishing you didn’t have to go into your office. You show up and keep your head down waiting for the clock to strike 5:00pm. You’re never offered a promotion because you have no desire for it. You carry the closed off energy of no. Conversely, let’s say you don’t really enjoy your job, but you know that there’s possibility for a different position within the company. You show up every day with the vision of that promotion and look for every opportunity to get you closer to it. You show your eagerness for advancement and everyone notices. When the position is available, your boss thinks of you first because of the initiative and excitement you’ve displayed. 

Humans are intuitive beings and notice the two opposing energies. When you present yourself in a light of expansion, others will be attracted to your light and want to thrive in it as well.

Be True To Your Journey

While the goal may seem to be a positive attitude for every aspect of your life, know that that is not natural and you should always strive to follow what feels best for you. It’s natural to have bad days and have a bad attitude because it keeps us balanced and human. It’s natural for some things to never feel good for you, and that’s just the universe communicating that it’s not in your journey. 

All we can do is notice what we want and where we want to go and show up ready to get there. Show up with the energy of a yes and create your reality. The rest will follow.