Are you staying on the mat today?

So the story goes that there was a woman (I am not this woman in this instance, but I have been her many times before) who turned up to a yoga class only to spend the entire time flat on her back on the mat. Crying. There were no downward dogs this day. There was no saluting the sun. There were tears. And streams and streams of them at that. For the entire class. She didn’t get up. She didn’t leave. She stayed on the mat. Crying. At the end of the class the teacher came up to the woman and congratulated her. This is the work of the warrior, she told her. Well done.

Staying on the mat is hard. Feeling our feelings is hard. It’s much easier to launch off into, well pretty much anything else.

But we need to feel our feelings. My experience is that if we push them deep down inside ourselves, throw ourselves into our lives and busy ourselves doing, rather than being with those feelings, they simply find some way of popping out at some inopportune time. Days, months, years later. It is e-motion after all, energy in motion. It needs to move. It’s our job to stay on the mat. And as hard as it can be, to allow it. We are human beings. Not human doings. Be. Feel.

It’s been 6 months since my Dad died. I’ve been on the mat. Everyday. And it’s hard. I’ve cried everyday since.

Why do I you cry so much? The same reason I laugh so much: I’m paying attention.

And the two are not mutually exclusive. We can laugh and be happy and we can grieve and be sad. We can remember the good and experience the hard. Knowing that no relationship ever truly ends.

So, will you be staying on the mat today?


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  1. Hi Kate, Good to read this. Agree it is very hard to stay on the mat, in a life where there are so many messages coming to us about how to feel & behave, really knowing what it is we feel and allowing it is a challenge. Well done. Well said. Lots of love to you x

    1. Thanks Eevi. So glad it resonated with you. And well said. So much societal conditioning telling us not to feel what we’re feeling. Lots of love to you too x

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