Ideal Day

Teacher training is demanding, and the monthlong breaks between our meetings (and my inherently extremely lazy personality) make it much too easy to slack off. I’d jotted down our “homework” assignments for this month in the margins of the syllabus, and one assignment that seems to glare especially suspiciously is this: Meditate every day.

Boy oh boy.

Needless to say, that isn’t happening. I was doing okay for a while, clocking in some really tiny little, barely perceptible, ten- or fifteen-minute sits in the morning, just after my D. left for work, but before I plunked my butt down in front of an iMac for the day. But part of our morning ritual has been to share a fresh pot of coffee (a Chemex, of course), and I found myself jittery, eyelashes aflutter, fingertips vibrating, sitting down on the cushion after all that coffee. I love our morning coffee routine — the grinding of the beans, the pouring of the water, the heady aroma, the ritual of it all. Obviously, I sort of fell off the wagon. (Let us not get started on my deep love for beer, and how that interferes with, well, everything yogic, really. I am a shameful yogi, I really am.)

Just now, I paced back and forth around the living room, declaring myself a life failure to D., who was composing an email on his iPad. “Evidence suggests otherwise,” he said. I was unconvinced. I procured a beer from the refrigerator.

I mean, I know. The sacrifices of too much coffee or a beer (or three) with dinner or sleeping in (to 7 AM, really) are not much in comparison to the effects of a nice little sit. I’ve done it enough to know that it matters, that it really makes a difference. Just like the practice itself — asana. But why the heck is it so hard to sit down on the cushion? Why is it so hard to roll out the mat? Is it a physics problem? You know, inertia? (My brother is a physics teacher. I like to tease him about this. For instance, at Thanksgiving, I tried the ol’ yanking-the-tablecloth-off-the-table thing. “A physics experiment!” I cried, as salad plates clattered all around me, crumbs and peppercorns flying. My folks were not too fond of that.)

For a while I’d been thinking that if I actually wrote up a schedule, I might follow through on some of my more yogic commitments. (You see, there’s a bit of a conflict. I’m not sure I actually want to teach yoga — I’m in teacher training mostly to just have more yoga. But still, I ought to do the training as if I were teaching, because, well, who knows? Anusara could use a few grouches, no?)

So I present my ideal day. The day I may never have. But the day I’d like to record, on the off chance that it gives me just enough structure to make it sort of a possibility.

An Ideal Day for a Grouchy Yet Idealistic Yogi

  • 5:45 AM — Wake up and stuff
  • 6:00 — Meditate! Yeah!
  • 6:30 — Coffee awesomeness, breakfast, kickin’ it with D., general morning laziness
  • 7:15 — Dog walk at the local trail (we do this every day anyway)
  • 8:15 — Shower and etc.
  • 9:00 — Work! Implement a Pomodoro-style plan with more regularity
  • 11:00 — Yoga practice or run, depending on the day
  • 12:30 PM — Lunch…
  • 1:00 — Back to work, lazy-ass
  • 5:00 — Dinner prep, hanging out with D., feeding the dog, this-n-that
  • 6:30 — Dinner
  • 7:30 — God only knows… we live in a remote, rural area. What do people do at night? Studying for TT, I guess. Scrabble. Reading. (I love to read. It’s pretty much the only thing I’ve been consistently passionate about for over 30 years.)
  • 10:00 — Bedtime!

When I put it in a list, it almost seems do-able. It seems approachable at least. (Assuming I don’t have lots of work.)

How do you do it? Do you meditate? How do you make space for it in your life? What sacrifices have been hard?

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