It was pointed out to me today that I should try to relax my face, and try to smile, when I practice, because it would make things easier. This was during my usual (these days) tussle with UHP. Even with an assist, my sense of balance seems to have gone on vacation as has my ability to be really present with the pose. For the rest of standing and seated, I tried to relax more around my face and jaw. And you know what, it helped. It didn't transform my practice into anything amazing, but I felt like it took less energy and that the very bumpy vinyasas were a bit smoother. All this on less sleep and in a hotter room than on Wednesday. Sometimes the practice really is a mystery to me, but it was a welcome change from my recent practices which have seemed like they were so much work!
It is interesting how smiling is the solution to so many things: it can improve your mood (and the mood of others), make you sing those high notes, and apparently, it also gives your yoga practice more ease.
We'll see if this carries over to tomorrow.
Carrying on with the theme of relaxing my face and my jaw in particular, I finally did a feldenkrais lesson on relaxing the jaw. Wow. I never realized how much tension I had there, I mean I knew it was tense at times, but not that it was tense all the time. My neck and upper back feel more relaxed too. I will definitely repeat this lesson.