Most of the good things in life don’t last as long as we hope they will and most of the bad things in life don’t last as long as we fear they will. The yoga mat is a good proving ground for confronting and conquering feelings of desperation, for courageously moving through the bad times. And if you can do it on your mat you can do it anywhere else.

You may have reached a plateau with certain poses where the situation seems hopeless. You feel like no matter what you do your flexibility has reached its limit and your body isn’t going to let you go any farther. This might seem like a trivial area for desperation but it’s all relative and if you really care about your yoga practice you have as much right to feel desperate in this area of your life as in any other, actually more right if we can agree that yoga is the place where you are most your Self.

The poses you are worried about are almost certainly going to open up in time, on their own time, as long as you stick with them and keep riding that edge. You can’t force it, you can’t make poses happen before they’re ready, but you’ll find that if you keep going your desperation will end up being unwarranted as those tight areas almost magically start to loosen up over the weeks and months. One day, almost out of nowhere, you’ll be in a place you never believed possible and you won’t even think twice about it.

What a great practice for life in general, where desperation rears its ugly head all too often. People say ‘desperate times call for desperate measures’ but for all of us on the path a better saying is ‘desperate times call for steadfast yogis’.

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