Many people view doing yoga as just another form of exercise, like aerobics or Pilates or Zumba class. But the true purpose of practicing yoga poses is to help us develop focus, to become more centered in ourselves, more mindful of our actions and words, more observant and accepting of ourselves and others and more able to deal peacefully with the constant chatter of the world and the constant chatter in our own minds. We practice physical yoga "on the mat" so that we can take the spirit of yoga into our daily lives, "off the mat."
So, here is a bit of yogic wisdom that I think applies just as well to writing or any other kind of creativity as to doing yoga poses. In fact, it applies to pretty much every aspect of our lives:
"PRACTICE MAKES PRACTICE."
It's human nature to practice things with the hope of "mastering them." Yoga students are no exception - we secretly hope to eventually be able to do the perfect triangle pose or backbend. But mastery or perfection are not real things, because they are both relative and fleeting. We might find ourselves doing a lovely pose, the best we have ever done. But it will never be perfect, and it will not last longer than the five or ten breaths for which we can hold it.
As a writer, I know that the more I write, the better my writing will be. I may have moments when the writing flows and is beautiful and free and uninhibited. I might even come up with what feels to me like a perfect turn of phrase. But my idea of perfection is relative, because yours is most likely different.
So there is no "mastery" or "practice making perfect" in writing, or painting or any other creative endeavor. Neither is there any mastery of life - no amount of practice will enable us to perfectly handle all people and situations with our perfect words and actions. There is only the yoga of life: practice makes practice. You see?
Okay, I have to go practice writing now ...