You may have made lofty New Year’s resolutions—meditate more, conquer the handstand—but, not surprisingly, old habits are hard to drop and these self-promises are falling by the wayside with each passing week. Don’t despair, you can still move forward with your 2017 goals, all you have to do is shake up your routines. Roberta Paixao Cortes, a professional dancer turned yogi, teaches at YogaOne in Houston and can help you get “unstuck.”
1. Make small shifts.
Say your intention is to embrace a healthier lifestyle this year. Instead of clearing out your entire pantry at once, start by switching from rice to quinoa or using coconut oil instead of canola oil. Then try another small shift from there. Give yourself mini-deadlines to gently nudge progress.
2. Modify your practice.
Using a prop can give you access to something completely new on your mat. And it doesn't mean you are better, or worse, than anyone else! Next time you’re in Trikonasana (Triangle Pose), put one hand on a block to lengthen your spine without collapsing. Or bring your back knee to the ground in a Lunge. Give yourself permission to do something different, which can translate into other sectors of your life like overcoming a fear or starting new conversations.
3. Be of service.
Volunteer for a seva project, such as a local charity or food bank or an animal shelter. Participating in something that’s bigger than yourself can be a pivotal turning point in moving forward. When I became an ambassador for Africa Yoga Project, an organization that uses yoga to empower and educate young people in Kenya’s slums, it was the biggest a gift to myself: it helped me shift my vision from blaming people and situations for my feeling “stuck” to creating meaningful impact in people’s lives. It gave me pride. And it all started with asking, “How can I get involved?”