Many people buy books on yoga and meditation, but never get into the regular practice of these methods. It is not only true for yoga, there must be millions of self-help and self-instruction manuals of all types gathering dust on shelves around the world. So if you are in this position, don’t feel bad, you are not alone!

But it is not enough to feel content knowing that others, like you, are also hesitating in doing things that will improve their lives. It is possible to break out of the procrastination phase and actually start doing something. It is all a question of attitude and approach.

What should be our attitude? We should remember the words of a Chinese sage who said that “the journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step.” Instead of thinking how hard it will be to reach the end of the journey, start with the single step. And keep taking those single steps until you arrive at your destination.

Remember the old fable of the tortoise and the hare? The hare got off to a quick start in a race with the slow moving tortoise, but he lost his sense of urgency and, after a while, went to sleep. The tortoise just plodded along until he reached the finish line and was the unexpected victor in the race.

I have seen some yoga students get off to a quick start and they began by practicing everything for a while and then lose interest and fade away like the sleeping hare. The best students are those who start off slowly but keep continuing for a long time.

So what does this mean for you? Open your instruction book, whether it is for yoga or for language learning or anything else that will improve your life, and commit yourself to a few minutes of reading and practice each day.

In the case of yoga, do one exercise. It will take only a few minutes. You can surely do it. For meditation, sit for a few minutes in silence, and don’t worry about the results. Once you do it for a few days, gradually add a bit more. Do another yoga exercise and extend the time of your meditation to a few more minutes.

For meditation, it is best to build up to 30 minutes per session. 30 minutes? Yes, 30 minutes, because the longer you sit the deeper you will go. But if you are not ready don’t try to sit for 30 minutes right from the start. Do a few minutes but do it regularly and extend the time gradually.

So, your attitude should be to take everything one step at a time and to start practicing, today itself, keep practicing and keep adding a bit to the practice on a day-by-day basis. Continue in this slow but steady pace, and you will, like the tortoise, win the race.

Author's Bio: 

Dada Vedaprajinananda has been practicing and teaching yoga and meditation for the past 35 years. He has taught around the world, is the author of “The Wisdom of Yoga”, “Yoga Weight Loss Secrets” and numerous magazine articles. You can read more of his articles at his website: