Practice, practice, practice.
Practice simply, earnestly.
Practice with sincerity.
Sincerity in practice can mean a lot of different things to different people. After all, we are only as noble and able as our current state of awareness allows for. This applies to our ability to bring honesty and a sense of purpose to our daily rituals, for sure. I'm speaking of yoga and meditation specifically, but this can simply be a statement of how important it is to bring consciousness and intention to as many of our thoughts and deeds as possible.
I think I went years without actually putting conscious intention behind my so-called practice. I went along, going through the motions, although that was never my intent. I didn't really know what I was doing, and for a while too, no doubt. I've experienced malaise and bliss on the mat. I've experienced anxiety, stillness and so much in between. I went along, calling it a practice, calling it my yoga practice because that's what everyone around me called it.
How easy-peasy and commonplace it is to enter the practice looking to get fit, look cute, or be a part of the boom. Even if there's a feel-good effect, how easy is it take that without questioning exactly what feels good, or why the practice has this effect? Sincerity in practice leads each of us to take our rightful place amongst everyone else who likes to feel good and is, to some degree or another, averse to feeling anything else.
With little regard for the opposite side of the coin, I know what it's like to want the feel-good aspects of the practice while wanting to avoid the rest. Is it possible to have a perpetual feel-good yoga and meditation practice without experiencing the shit side? Short answer is no. This is where sincerity comes in. This is where the my comes in.
Sincerity here, leads me to the most relevant, most poignant and often times, the most difficult realizations about myself. It prompts me to investigate what feels not-so-awesome. It is with sincerity that I try to recognize my strengths, gifts and accomplishments, for sure. But at the same time, I remain willing to ask: What feels in need of love and compassion? What aspects of my being need growth or healing?
Make no mistake, the work of the practice and the practice itself are not separate.
Sincerity, like a whisper from the soul, says: "You are good. You are divine, but you can't be whole without growth.".
So, do your practice.