This is going to sound really un-yogic, but I’m naturally a competitive person.
After years of playing soccer with boys, a 3 time overall winner of fitness competitions, and most recently having competed and placed 3rd in my first Jiu Jitsu competition, I think it’s a sure bet to say that I like to push my competitive edge. Heck, I’d also be lying if I said I wasn’t a little competitive over winning a game of Connect 4 at one point in time.
But now, I’m a little over winning.
Don’t get me wrong, winning feels awesome. There is a thrill and a feeling of success that is hard to beat. But one of the most important lessons yoga has taught me is the destination of winning is small beans compared to the process that got you there.
If winning was the only reason to participate in an activity, then why don’t good teams only play really bad teams? Or high school teams give middle schools a beat down? Or maybe I should have competed in the kids Jiu Jitsu division? (Take that, 6 year old!) Or why practice yoga for that matter?
Winning is great, but it isn’t everything. I’m much more interested in what I learn in the process to become better.
What new detail can I learn to make my handstand 1 breath longer? How can I turn my hips so that next time won’t get smushed by a 138 pound amazon woman in competition again?
My journey in fitness has taken many shapes, but what gives me the most fulfillment hasn’t been in a trophy or a medal. What makes my life richer is the daily success of learning something new, or doing the best of my ability in any given moment. To me, that is the only true success, and maybe after that, I can get the medal.