general blather, mulling things over

Step away from the mirror

The only time I see my reflection when I’m doing yoga is if I happen to be doing standing poses near the TV and see, oh, maybe part of my hips, but my face is not generally pointed to it on purpose.

I’m traveling at the moment, and the only place in the hotel room that works for yoga is the bathroom.  The bedroom rug seems disgusting, even though this is a nice place, and I didn’t bring a mat.  The bathroom mirror is quite large.

This morning I did standing poses and was so distracted by my reflection that I ended up turning around and practicing facing the door and the wall.  In addition to seeing how cockeyed my hips were, I realized my attention was completely external, focused on that woman facing me.  I had none of the internal feedback I normally get.  It was as though I had stepped outside of my body.

My son and husband took years of Tae Kwon Do.  Their dojang had a mirror filling one entire wall.  You could see students, particularly the younger ones, watching themselves throughout their practice, and not practicing very well.  If you can’t see yourself, you have to be inside, paying direct attention rather than secondary attention.

2 thoughts on “Step away from the mirror”

  1. Nice observation. It seems that way in so many circumstances, no? Self-consciousness from watching your own reflection can distract one so easily from actual consciousness.

  2. I was just reading Twyla Tharp’s Creative Habit. In the first chapter, Rituals of Preparation she offers several exercises. Give me one week without is the title of the first set of these exercises. Guess what the first one is? Yep. Go a week without looking in the mirror. Brilliant observation, Mollyavalon. Going inside takes practice, but the benefits are startling.

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