The Psychology of a Warrior

The room is silent, my eyes steadied ahead of me and my arms spread wide in a Warrior Pose. As my feet feel the yoga mat below and my torso lengthens upward my body feels strong. I take a deep breath in, and a slow breath out.

And then within a moment my attention strays and my mind begins its manipulative dance. “Put your arms down”, it says. “You’ve been in the pose long enough, take a break.” It continues to nag.


I observe this chatter. I give it a bit of attention but direct my awareness back to deepening my breath.  But then my mind starts to get angry. It’s demanding, aggressive, and crass. Yet, I stay steady. Eyes locked ahead of me, arms spreading wide. I take another breath, and then another.

Slow inhales, steady exhales.

This is hard, is all I can think. This practice feels too hard. “You’re not good enough”, that familiar voice echoes from my mind. “I should have never even tried. What’s the point of this anyways?” My head is spinning with insecurity now…

Suddenly a voice from somewhere in the room says, “Take just one more breath”.

My mind thinks I can’t possibly do it, yet my body pulls strength from deep within…slow inhale…exhale…

“Lower your arms and step to the front of the mat,” says the voice of the teacher.

It’s over. The challenge, the struggle, the insecurity is over.

My body feels fatigued but strong. Alive yet calm. And my mind? My mind feels quiet, clear, present.

In this quiet moment a truth arises, “Through struggle, I grow.” I awaken to a deep sense of resilience. It feels soft yet fierce, welcomed, familiar, and important. I am strong. I am resilient.

And then, from somewhere within the room I hear the teacher’s voice, “Warrior Pose, second side…”