Returning to the Mat

Months and days go by where I think to myself “I should be doing this or I should be doing that.” I should read more books. I should call my grandparents more often. I should study Spanish again. I should, I should, I should. While there are tons of things we “should” be doing, life gets in the way.

Admittedly, life got in the way of my yoga practice. I once lived a life where my practice integrated itself into my daily routine flawlessly and I couldn’t get through a day without getting down on my mat. I needed to let everything go, breathe and challenge my body and mind everyday in order to feel content and focused.

Yet, life turned upside down and my practice diminished from everyday to a few times a week to then a few times every month and then finally and unfortunately, once every few months.

After about four months of zero mat contact, limited inversions and an anxious rhythm in my breath, I finally got back to the mat.

However, unlike, my previous yoga feigning experience when I lived a mellow life and had the flexibility of spending all day in my yoga clothes. This time around, my practice experience was different, by a long shot. 

The secluded almost secret yoga studio where I practice, sits directly across the street from my office building, a corporate business edifice. Two places I am a dedicated member of - my studio and my office - both see me in two different forms, two different lights.

The office sees me from eight in the morning to six at night all button-up, sipping coffee and anxiously running around to meet deadlines. While the studio sees the relaxed, breathing, calm me.

My day goes like this. I walk out from the subway in the morning on the same side as my office doors, work for too many hours, exit the building, cross the street and enter my yoga sanctuary, where work is left at the door, practice for 90 minutes, exit the building and walk down to the subway directly across the street from the building I entered eleven hours earlier. Talk about full-circle.

This dichotomy is so bipolar that sometimes I imagine what an observer would see from a bird’s eye view. On one side of the street, there’s a pencil-skirt wearing professional who stresses about quarterly reports and on the other side, is a girl who is present, practically naked and sweating without a care in the world, except to perfect crow.

Getting back to the mat was a challenge for me and not only because I struggled with finding time but because of integrating my two wildly different personalities into the same space for the majority of the week. However, after a few weeks of going from the office to yoga, I felt both mentally and physically empowered and motivated again, especially at work.

Now instead of feeling claustrophobic of spending so much time in the same hundred yards, I smile a little wider when I see my yoga studio from my office window. And smirk between breathes when I’m tangled in a position and my only focal point is the office building across the street.

A close friend advised me that life is all about “balance,” how to balance the positive and negative, the good and the bad. And in my current case, the sweaty yoga shorts and the starchy suit coats. 


KENDALL grew up in New England, yet started traveling at a young age and developed an internal compass which has grown into a voracious appetite for exploration. Throughout her travels learned to foster an open-mind, be kind to everyone and never just take one picture, but thousands. She is passionate about writing, photography and being around those she holds near and dear to her heart. Follow her here: www.instagram.com/kennie_lane

Kendall Clark

KENDALL grew up in New England, yet started traveling at a young age and developed an internal compass which has grown into a voracious appetite for exploration. Throughout her travels learned to foster an open-mind, be kind to everyone and never just take one picture, but thousands. She is passionate about writing, photography and being around those she holds near and dear to her heart.