One of the best things about yoga, for me, is the way it wrangles my head into the hear and now. When on the mat, I'm on the mat. I have reached a point where I can be pretty much fully present. I like that.
The benefit of practice carries over into my day-to-day. Since maintaining a daily practice of yoga, I've been able to be more mindful throughout the day.
When I notice my mind racing, which it often does, I find my breath and notice the in and out. A few simple rounds of noticing breath - in and out, in and out, in and out - calms my mind and helps me focus on the task at hand.
I'm an investigator. I sometimes work on crazy complex cases that have about a million moving parts. It can be hard to corral the information into a useful state. Taking a moment to breathe and notice often leads to seeing connection and correlation.
For the past three days I've been in "case camp" with an attorney client. We rented an airbnb and holed up for a few days to focus and brainstorm. To some, this exercise might seem like a waste of time, but they'd be wrong. Taking the time to gather and consider in a quiet place - away from the day to day - helped us see things clearly.
Each morning I got up and spent a few minutes reading for personal pleasure. I then took the time to move through some poses - up to an hour of yoga each morning.
About the same time each day - somewhere around mid day - we would reach saturation and cross words would fly. We'd gesture and yell at each other. We'd look at the board and stare in confusion.
I'd walk out to the front porch and breathe. He'd come out and do the same. We'd laugh at our frustration. We'd calm down. We'd talk about the argument or confusion that just surfaced. A couple of times we just sat and looked to the west, breathing in the foul air that defined our home for "case camp." We'd suss out the problem, head back in to face the board, and work towards understanding.
Three days of focused reading and study. Three days of parsing information. Three days of meditation on the issue.
The point of this post is pretty simple. We took the time to retreat and consider. We used yoga and meditative practices to work our way through a complex problem.