Have you ever felt like there’s a brick wall between you and your yoga or meditation practice? Even the most devout yoga students and teachers face resistance to getting on their mat  or sitting on their meditation cushion from time to time. If you have been meaning to practice lately, but just haven’t quite made it, here are some tips that can help you beat your own resistance to yoga and meditation practice.

1. Make it Routine – Most of us didn’t grow up practicing yoga or meditation on a regular basis. It requires a change in our lives to get to a particular class or wake up 30 minutes earlier to practice at home. While your brain may need a certain amount of variety, if you want to overcome resistance to yoga practice, your brain will actually thank you for getting into a routine. Choose a specific class or time for your home practice and stick to it for a minimum of 5 weeks before choosing another 5 week routine.

2. Invest in Your Practice – While money isn’t everything, it can actually be a powerful motivator for your practice. Purchase a package of private yoga sessions or enroll in a yoga or meditation series to take your practice to the next level. Money is just another form of energy. When you put energy toward your practice in advance, you will be more invested and less likely to let resistance win.

3. Be Prepared – Again, put energy toward your practice well before you are scheduled to do it. If you practice at a studio keep a separate yoga mat in your car so you won’t use forgetting your mat as an excuse not to go to class. Pick out the clothes you will practice in with a little extra care. Professional athletes often give significance to certain aspects of their uniform or the way they get dressed for both practice and performance. The more you can infuse the elements that lead you to your yoga mat or meditation cushion with intention, the more power you will build to beat resistance.

4. You’ll do it when it’s important to you. – It may not be what you want to hear, but the truth is that we take action on the things that are important to us. Just how important is your yoga and meditation practice to your overall wellbeing? Would you rank it in the top three or does it float somewhere in the “things I should do” category? If you’re sitting back and letting others dictate where you spend most of your energy take at least 15 minutes at the end of each week to re-prioritize your schedule. First focus on the top 3 most important things you can do for yourself next week, then choose 1 to 3 actions that are important to you each day and put them on your calendar. If yoga or meditation is one of these top tasks, you will practice. Resistance is weakened when you take a stand and consciously direct your energy toward what is most important to you.

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I would love to know how you beat resistance to practice or taking action in other areas of your life. Tell me in the comments below what works for you and what you would like advice on when it comes to overcoming resistance.


This article first appeared on YogaLagniappe.com.