“But let there be spaces in your togetherness and let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.” -Khalil Gibran
In my previous article I spoke about the benefits of being a yogi dating a yogi — but it’s not always zen-like bliss. This week, let me show you how challenging it can get at times to keep up with a yogi partner.
1. You Can’t Cheat On Your Practice
I’ll be the first to admit there are days when you just don’t want to move! You want to be lazy, not be up with the sunrise for once and just snuggle deeper into your blanket. Well, if your partner is a yogi, then good luck with that! You will be woken up at your usual time, be guilted out of bed and reminded that you cannot afford to skip your practice — not least because of that huge slice of pizza you had yesterday.
At five in the morning it takes all your spirituality to remind yourself that you do actually like this person. Ultimately you will be out of bed and in the shower and following your regular routine, just the opposite of how you wanted. Yogi partners rarely give you a break, meanwhile convincing you that it is all for your own good! At least there’s solace in knowing you do the same thing on other mornings.
2. Oh, Those Condescending Moments!
All that talk of spirituality can grate your nerves at times. Some days you just want to complain about everything wrong with the world and you want someone to sit next to you and listen. A yogi partner, however, chooses exactly that moment to be the rainbow in your sky and will counter every negative point you mention with a positive view. They’ll reason with you that it’s ‘all for the best.’ While it’s nice to be grateful most of the time, the yogi’s optimistic worldview can sometimes leave you feeling more foolish and angry than before! Instead, it’s a good idea to take some alone time if you just need to purge your emotions, or let them know that you just need someone to listen rather than help you.
3. Clash Of The Titans
When sharing so much time, common interests and mutual pursuits with someone, it’s inevitable that you start to get competitive. How do you combat this? Here’s a few ideas:
- Make ‘niches’ for yourselves, so although you may be pursuing the same goal or doing the same activity, there’s a difference that puts you out of competition.
- Know that you each have your own strengths. Maybe you’re the strong one and they’re the flexible one — remember you both bring something to the table!
- Celebrate their successes. Their success is not your failure and should only bring happiness to you both.
Even though the main purpose of your practice is not to have the perfect yoga body or a perfect āsana, it’s still an ego boost to see that you’re achieving one or the other. Maybe that is why they say we need to shed our egos!
4. No Secrets Allowed
Yoga is a spiritual practice. It increases your awareness and focus in a relationship, and makes you more sensitive to the needs and moods of your partner. Meditation is a big part of the yogi lifestyle, but it’s a roller coaster. It might quiet you down, or increase your energy levels and at times even leave you very angry or worse, in tears.
If you choose to meditate with someone else, you share very intimate energies with each other. You notice each others’ mood changes, know instantly that there might be something bothering the other person and know that your partner might be keeping something from you. Also, all the spiritual practices that form the path of yoga cause many changes internally in a person. Your partner stands witness to all of this and it’s very difficult to hide when they want to ‘talk’ about what’s going on!
5. Too Much Of Each Other
Following such a specific lifestyle means you end up doing a lot of things together and at the same time: you do yoga together, you meditate, you eat together, you might read similar books or even go on a retreat together. Odds are, your friends don’t understand your weird little world as well, so when exactly do you take time off each other?
If you are completely on this path, you end up spending so much time together that you might start looking at your partner as an extension of your practice rather than a separate individual. In times like these it’s important to make the conscious choice to do things on your own, even if you could be doing them with your other half. If you lose track of who you are as an independent person, you won’t be able to hold your own in a relationship during the rocky times. Just because you’re not with them all the time doesn’t mean your feelings for them aren’t as strong.
The Recipe For A Perfect Relationship?
What even is a perfect relationship? Some say opposites attract and the difference in their personalities keeps the excitement alive in the relationship. Others say that similar people form better partnerships that lead to longer lasting relationships. I personally believe that all combinations of people can have deep meaningful relationships when you let each other flourish as individuals. All relationships come with their eccentricities that add joy to our being if you’re ready to put some work in.
Are you a yogi (or a non-yogi) in a relationship with a yogi? Share with us your relationship quirks in the comments below. I would love to know I’m not alone in this!