So why now? Well, it’s not to show off my asana practice, to score a sweet modeling gig, or even for the 1:10,000 shot at a prize at the end of the challenge. It’s not about winning or even marketing myself.
I am publicly accepting accountability to show up on my mat every day for 12 days. I am joining a community to motivate me and then holding myself responsible for meeting the challenge each day.
Under all the clever marketing and catch phrases, that’s what these challenges do for their communities. They create a buzz around #yoga and encourage us to stay involved, placing the answerability directly on us. It creates a whole accountability community.
Accountability is accepting responsibility for one’s actions (or inactions). It is both a mindset and a skill. By sharing my commitment publicly or even to a partner, I have more motivation to help myself stay on track with my accepted goal or task.
While I never really imagined myself being part of an Instagram challenge, I’m already finding there are multiple benefits to it. Aside from accountability and motivation:
1) It’s fun and free! Yoga can be an expensive lifestyle when you add up studio classes, gym memberships, workshops, and retreats. A home practice saves you money and always fits your schedule. You don’t need to drop a dime to participate in a home practice or an Instagram challenge.
2) Expands community and networking. When you follow the hashtag for a challenge you are immediately connecting with a vast community of people who share at least one similar interest. It’s a source of finding your next inspiration, or maybe even connecting and becoming inspiration for someone else!
3) Documents progress. That progress could be leading up to a specific pose or your evolution towards establishing a daily practice. Remembering the importance of the journey is easier with photo documentation!
4) Encourages conscious attention. Instagram challenges often encourage you to try a pose you wouldn’t typically include your own practice, or maybe it asks you to focus on a pose that is typically mindlessly flowed through. For example, today’s posture is Upward Facing Dog. I visit that in every vinyasa, but the challenge asks me to really bring awareness to it. These challenges don’t require you to have a perfect asana, but they do call for intention and attention to a single pose.
5) Nourishes self-confidence. I’m not a huge fan of selfies, or really anything with my face in it. These Instagram challenges aren’t necessarily calling for incredible photography or beautiful models. The focus is on the challenge itself. This allows me to step back from my self-judgment and join the rest of the community in sharing their pictures without the focus needing to be on how we look. After all, it’s getting on your mat that’s important!
Want to join me and become part of my little accountability community for this challenge? Comment on this post and follow me @ginamyoga so we can support each other!
“Each day you are leading by example. Whether you realize it or not or whether it's positive or negative, you are influencing those around you.” - Rob Liano (the Rock Star Success Coach)