The act of waking up each morning should be a wonderful, joyous event. It’s a new day, new journey, and new chance at life.

But sometimes we may not look forward to the day. Can yoga help make a difference?

It sure can - yoga can help you transform yourself into a courageous warrior!

Asanas for Courage

Asana practice is amazing for so many reasons - one is that it can help you find the courage you have within yourself and nurture it to grow.

There are specific poses believed to help increase our confidence. The asanas inherently help increase courage. In addition, working on challenging asanas helps us extrapolate into the rest of our life to believe that other situations can also be mastered.

A few examples are Matsyendrasana (Fish), Bhujangasana (Cobra), or Sirsasana (Headstand). These courage-building asanas are about creating and overcoming challenging experiences while not allowing the mind and its chatter (usually fear) to stop us.

Those afraid of hurting themselves may be intimidated by these poses. These poses are usually safe when the practitioner is mindful and takes things step by step.

If you feel the need for more precaution, preparatory stretches or exercises will strengthen the muscles and help to increase self-confidence.

Fear has its roots in truth, but courage is acknowledging fear and deciding not to let our fears stop us from experiencing life to the fullest.

Change is the only constant

Courage is not the sole ingredient needed for success.

Sustained effort is one of the most important elements of success. Persevering even when progress is elusive can be discouraging.

It’s often said that the only constant is change. Even when it seems that things aren’t changing, if you examine your situation closely, you’ll realize that progress is occurring even if it only takes the guise of change.

The reality is that you have learned something about yourself, the process, what is or isn’t working. Things may have even gotten ever so slightly easier.

This objective non-judgemental observation of self and our situation is the same type of observation used during asana and meditation practice.

Be in the present

From the moment we open our eyes in the morning until our heads hit the pillow, we are pulled to “do” something. The world tells us we need to do more, try harder, push further.

Sometimes this demand for action is absolutely needed; sometimes it’s absolutely false. As human “beings,” not human “doings,” sometimes we just need to be, and be in the present moment.

When we are 100% in the present moment, we naturally take things one moment at a time. Things can seem daunting if instead we look at the end goal.

Taking things one step at a time makes things more manageable, more realistic, and less overwhelming. In that context less courage is needed to take one small step.

Go gentle and slow, step-by-step in your life and you’ll get there in time. Your confidence is growing. Your courage is growing. Change is happening. You’ll arrive at just the right time.

Deborah Lim is an internationally certified yoga instructor currently based in Toronto and loves that wearing comfortable clothes is required in her profession. She unleashes her creativity through cooking, crafts and DIY - take a peek into her tasty recipes and uplifting messages in her blog.