On falling out of practice

I keep falling out of my yoga practice.

I prefer to go to yoga about 4 to 5 times per week, and I've learned that for me, this seems to be the optimal number of practices each week. Its where my happiness seems to be maximized, and I have yet to experience diminished returns. The difference between 6 practices in a week and 7 is pretty small, but I can really feel the difference between 3 classes in a week and 4.

But the last few weeks I've only been going about once per week.

Why is this? 

100% of the time I go to yoga I feel great, and I'm happy I went. I regret going to yoga 0% of the time, and as implied above I'm keenly aware of how my mind and body react to a regular practice.

So how does this happen? 

I have one possible explanation.

Back at the start of January I started the 30 day yoga challenge Maile has each year at her studio. I kicked it off strong and even made it through Days 12 and 13 when I was on a trip out to San Francisco.

I missed day 14 though and fell out of the challenge. Shortly after that my practice slowed and ever since the middle of January I've only been making it to practice once a week.

I think maybe these two events are related.

Maybe by failing to finish the challenge, it made subsequent practices less important. As the individual classes became less important, my weekly number of practices became less important too. (I only went twice last week, it doesn't matter if I only go once this week)

The thing is though, this happens not just in yoga, but in life.

You're saving money, but slip up a few times, and so then slip up some more because hey, you already slipped up anyway. We haven't talked with our friends in a while, and so we don't call them until we have time to talk for a lengthy conversation. And of course it's harder to find an hour than 10 minutes, and so the calls remain unmade. The same can be said for diets, workouts or business goals.

The antidote then seems to be a combination of forgiveness, intention and effort. Forgiveness for falling out of practice in the first place, the intention to get back into practice, and the effort required to do so. 

No matter what practice we've fallen out of I think the above steps are required, but they don't necessarily have to be difficult.

Being aware of what's happening is often enough.