Playfulness may also help us explore new expressions of poses we haven’t tried before. We may be more likely to try to grab our toe in vasisthasana (side plank pose) if we approach it with more silliness. A silly attitude gives us permission to not get it “right” whereas when we approach the pose with complete seriousness we may not even try to get into a pose. We have no way of knowing if we can even do the more advanced pose unless we take the risk and give it a try. Sometimes a little silliness helps lighten our mood and just give it a try.
If yoga isn’t about silliness, it is about the process without regard to the outcome. Vrschikasana (scorpion pose) is a difficult inversion. It isn’t a pose anyone will get into and hold the first time she tries. Approaching it with all seriousness might inhibit us to try the pose in the first place whereas accepting the practice as a process releases us to let go of the outcome and have fun trying.
I’ve used today’s yoga classes as examples, but anyone can substitute this week’s life challenges in place of parivritta ardha chandrasana, vasisthasana, or vrschikasana. The only way to develop personally and professionally is to try something new, slightly scary perhaps. And to take that first step often means letting go of expected outcome and just be playful!