The following comparison came out of a conversation with the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop, which often combines yoga and writing – two wonderfully creative, nourishing processes.
It’s a journey.
With either session, there’s a beginning, a middle and an end. Oftentimes, there are themes involved in asanas or repetition for effect in writing. Where your ego or your character goes, and how they get there may be totally rehearsed or unexpected. In both cases, you’re sculpting something – your temple as the body or your body of work. Whether’s it’s facilitated or self-guided, it seems one is on a solitary path.
It’s an exercise.
In yoga, you work different muscles; in writing, you activate your brain. It’s an engagement of overall insight as well as attention to detail. You stretch yourself and your imagination. Practicing daily and pushing yourself builds strength and skill. It’s not like riding a bike necessarily – the less often you do it, the less flexible you become. Dedication shows and produces results.
It’s a release.
Whether it’s a mat and towel or pen and paper, you’re laying something down on blank space. An opening pose may relieve tension in an area; confessionary prose may feel liberating or even painful. The emotional aspect in both yoga and writing are not as obviously therapeutic.
There really is no right way to practice or write. Everyone holds his/her unique style because each body and each person’s history is different. Are there injuries and back stories? Depending on natural ability and ingrained behavior, it may take a few days or a few years to reach the last chapter or a peak pose. A certain shift in movement or a specific word can inspire at any eye-opening game changer.
When you let the control go, it flows. We have attachments – to stress built up on our bodies, to goals or favorite phrases. Speaking to the core resonates usually, no matter what you’re doing. And once you get the beauty of yoga and/or writing, you’re hooked for life.
This post was originally published on Thought Catalog.
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