What can yoga teach you about failure?

Failure can be a hard part of life, whether big or small we all experience it daily and it can be difficult to know how to manage. There's so much failure going on and no one really talking about it. We are so quick to celebrate our successes, often publicly, that we can feel forced to internalise our failures, leading to a lack of personal and communal growth. With failure comes lessons, determination and resilience.

Failure manifests in so many different ways and one persons failure could be another's success. It's all about perspective, always.

Don't sit on the sidelines letting the fear of failure hold you back, there is so much freedom and happiness to be had from trying things we know we are not good at. Through our yoga practice we can learn to deal with our 'failures' through laughter, breath and experiencing the joy of just having a go! Helping us to push through the constructs of failure vs success.

When did we learn to connect failure with shame, anyway? Personally I think it's connected to how parents differentiate between success and failure. The black and whiteness of the school system certainly doesn't do us any favours either!

You might be thinking blah, blah, blah I know failure is a part of life. But have you asked yourself the question; am I managing my expectations?

Managing expectations doesn't mean that you can't feel joy, pride and happiness in your success. It means learning how to expect results from our actions, without expecting our actions to make us happy.

In yoga we practice observing the mind, body and breath, without adjusting or placing judgement on ourselves. A beautiful balance between connection and detachment. Practicing this way of thinking is so helpful for managing expectations. Plus I'm yet to meet anyone who hasn't fallen out of tree pose with a smile on their face.


  1. Place your hands over your belly

  2. With kindness, observe what it feels like

  3. Is it hard? Soft? Can you feel it rise and fall with your breath?

  4. Stay here for a few moments

  5. Accept thoughts of judgement and move away from them, drawing the attention back to observation only

Remember life is one big game of trial and error. Don't be afraid to feel to fail and sit with that misery, because failure can make us feel bad, but we're all feeling it, managing it, together.

Poppy X


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