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I Talk to Myself During Handstand


“Where’s your will to be weird?” – Jim Morrison

Every single time I do a handstand, I talk myself through the steps: “Grip the floor, lean forward, pull in your belly, lean forward, look in front of your hands, reach with your foot, lean forward, press your hands into the floor, kick.” It doesn’t matter if I’m alone at my house or in the yoga studio with other people around, somehow saying the words out loud makes them resonate and easier for my brain to pay attention and actually execute a handstand.

Sometimes, I get a little discouraged that at this point in my handstanding journey (seven years folks), I still have to mentally run through all the steps and say them aloud for encouragement. I want to be like my friend Julie and the people I watch doing handstands in videos who magically put their hands to the floor and lift their feet into handstand as if without thought. Will it ever come so naturally to me that I’m not talking to myself like a crazy person while I’m doing it?

But wait a minute, seven years ago I wouldn’t even put my hands on the floor and attempt to kick up at the wall, and now I’ll do it in the middle of the room without fear of falling and breaking my neck — so what if I still have to talk myself through the many steps needed to do it? Maybe all the other handstanders have experienced the same thing in their journey and maybe they’re still talking to themselves, but their voice is talking faster, or is now able to leave out some of the details.

Honestly, it doesn’t really matter — my journey is my journey and their journey is theirs. Every single day my handstand gets better and stronger and dare I say it — easier. Someday, I won’t even need the chatter. At least that’s what I’m telling myself.
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