Yoga is known for all kinds of obvious benefits - helping you live more in the present moment, feel better, make healthier choices, get more strong and flexible, lower your blood pressure and make you happier... but here are a few out of the ordinary things that happened to me while practicing yoga, along with getting a little healthier.
1. I forgot to watch tv for about 14 years: Instead of watching tv, I would practice yoga. Or do some creative adventure. I didn't miss it, and I always got updated on any important news from friends who wouldn't let me slip away from the real world too much. I spent my extra time writing, drawing, painting, and making not so great music with friends. One day, I moved in with a room-mate who had a fabulous big screen television and I started watching tv again - WHAT FUN! I really got into it - so many great shows, and so much information. I watched comedies, and movies, documentaries, and CSI. All quite fascinating.
Today I think my yoga kicked in again. This might begin another run of 14 years of not watching tv. I noticed tv was a little soul numbing. maybe more than a little. I was watching "Scandal" tonight with Jack, and after the last death scene at the end, we looked at each other, feeling a bit morally bankrupt and depressed, and simultaneously said - we could really be doing something better than this. This stuff is so dark, like, we could be doing yoga, or breathing......
2. Another side benefit of practicing yoga is a "Loss of interest in drama": I find myself steering clear of most drama, unless I can directly make a difference - it's like the daily practice of yoga gets you a more efficient vehicle - cleaning up the debris of the mind, focusing on what's working and how to do more of that.
3. Appreciation for the small things - which might really be big if you let them be: Sometimes I get so appreciative that I actually feel super goofy -For example, when I am driving in the pouring rain at night. I am DRIVING through cold, unpleasant weather in an amazingly engineered steel capsule on wheels, speeding down the highway. Not getting cold or rained on. I find this amazing. Or for another example, waking up and breathing for another day.
I am appreciating these unexpected benefits of yoga - not just being upside down or bending myself into strange shapes...but getting my mind more fit, more refined in a way that's more mindful and present to life.