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Personality paradox and another reason to practice yoga

I have this friend who likes to repel down waterfalls. Or underwater. Or something. She has an adventurous spirit.

When you take the Quistic test to find your Myers-Briggs personality type (it’s free here), it asks you to agree or disagree with this statement: “a sense of adventure is close to my heart”.

As a Myers-Briggs enthusiast, I’ve taken the test more than once. I guess I like tests. I go back and forth on some of the questions, but historically not this one: a sense of adventure is close to my heart.

Until now. Because, what is an adventure?

Right now I’m watching my four month old inch off her playmat using exclusively leg and core strength – a little escape artist. A future yogi. An adventure I am at the very centre of.

This week the soundtrack for my walks with baby F became this unexpectedly inspirational podcast from Good Life Project. In this roundtable episode they talk about personality paradoxes – like when you’re really organized about some things but a complete mess about others. Or you’re intensely introverted but sometimes come alive when you’re the centre of attention.

This is one of those mental loops a lot of us get caught in: the desire to define ourselves, to discover our truth.

The podcast opened up the (totally obvious) option of having a paradoxical personality – being, embracing and using both sides of a given paradox. Accepting the paradox as a theme, rather than trying to pick one side or the other.

The theme of adventure, wild and tame at different turns.

The theme of self-discovery, admitting to an affinity for personality tests while also acknowledging we can’t be defined. And that we evolve. The right to change your answer on a test you’ve done more than once.

Yoga last week was all core and twists. I was ahead of the game since I play airplane baby every day. It was an adventurous practice – finding the limits of a core that’s conquered pregnancy, and gently pushing against them. It wasn’t about holding back or pushing hard though  – it was about the paradox – the theme of effort. Giving and absorbing it. And accepting the result in all its complex glory.

Every yoga posture has an element of opposing forces. Each one is a path to self-discovery. Another reason to practice yoga for today’s wild and tame alike.



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