Years ago, I swore to myself I would never say, “find your drishti” in any of the classes I taught. I found it to be a tiresome, overused phrase that teachers said over and over again without providing explanation or relevance of the term. I truly had no idea what I was looking for; therefore, how was I going to find it?
Drishti is a Sanskrit word that loosely translates to focused gaze. It is a means for developing concentrated intention. Okay, now we’re getting somewhere. In yoga, one’s drishti is used as a visual focal point in postures to steady your body, and over time, to focus your thoughts. Having a drishti supports balance, steadiness, and strength. Here’s a visual: remember watching ice-skaters twirl around and around on the ice? If you pay close attention to their head and their eyes, they stay focused on one point after turning quickly to return to that same point with their gaze, their drishti!
Yoga is truly a “practice” - in the asanas (postures) on our mat, we practice skills to bring off our mat. Recognizing the importance of drishti as we practice asanas translates to having a drishti off the mat.
So, how do you “find your drishti” off the mat? Start with what’s important. What is your goal, your dream, and GO BIG. Once you’ve gotten clear on your goal(s), start evaluating your day to day life in the context of, “is this supporting my drishti or is this extra noise prohibiting me from staying focused?” We are surrounded by noise - the news, the internet, technology, kids, traffic, consumerism, advertising. Think about the time spent on things that don’t support your drishti. Things that throw you off balance. Things that act as a distraction, rather than supporting action towards goals.
That is how you find your drishti. You identify goals. You recognize distractions. You work to remove distractions and stay focused. So friends, go forth and “find your drishti."
By Liz Skarvelis; All Rights Reserved @2017