I am at odds with the yoga selfie. First, I don’t like showing off and making a big deal out of something you’re good at. I think it can alienate and intimidate people from doing yoga at all. On the other hand, I follow about 20 yogis on instagram and really gain a lot of inspiration from their photos. Second, I don’t think so much emphasis should be placed upon being able to do certain postures. I think the more valuable gain in practicing is the mental calm and emotional growth you experience through practicing. But those things are hard to photograph.
If beautiful poses inpsire someone to buy a mat and practice then I think eventually they will experience all the benefits, spiritual and emotional because the physical and the mental seem to go hand in hand.
I don’t even know if I could fully explain what yoga has done for me. Probably the most meaningful change is that I’ve almost stopped judging myself so critically. I grew up always comparing myself to others. People were always smarter, stronger, funnier, prettier or just better than me. I was never good enough. But I’ve learned to shed those negative thoughts. How can I compare myself to someone else? Everyone is so different that there is no comparison. I can only be me. I can only compare myself to my past. And I can only get better.
Recently one of my favorite yogi’s to follow started doing a Selfless Selfie Celebration. Meaning they are posting yoga photos of people other than themselves doing yoga. I thought this was an awesome idea. Spreading yoga without showing off. But I wonder, do selfies necessarily mean you’re showing off? Or can it be better categorized as sharing and hoping to inspire? Or learning for yourself?
I think next month I will explore this idea further. Kino MacGregor is hosting a month long challenge to prepare yourself for handstands. The pose I’ve been working on for the past 3 years but have yet to master. The challenge is on instagram. 30 days of yoga selfies in a specific pose that will help you get into a handstand. My primary intention is to better myself by taking photos to self critique and keep focused on a single goal. 30 mins a day for 30 days. The secondary is to hope to inspire. Many people know I do yoga and teach, but I don’t think many know how important it is to me. It is something that will always be a part of my life, like my hair or my skin or my heart.