It can make you feel a bit silly, stepping into the building next door. I feel like I'm one extra "Ohm, shanti," away from passing out wildflowers. I remind myself that there is a little bit of an overlap: my students practice breathing mindfully, even when the natural response is to stop breathing, so that they can be better equipped to breathe mindfully in the real world, even when the natural response is to go into fight-or-flight mode. Out of the many things they're working on next door, keeping a cool mind even when the limbic system wants to freak out is one of the top things to have in place.
And I also remind myself of something I tell my students in practically every class: it's about balance. A balance between strength and ease. I've heard Leslie Kaminoff liken it to the membrane of a cell: a cell membrane that is too flexible, too soft, will collapse in on itself. The sheer pressure of the environment around it will make it cave in. However, a cell membrane that is too rigid, too strong, will die. Nothing will get in, it will starve, and it will whither away.
And that's life. On the one hand, you gotta be a little tough. You'll collapse in on yourself otherwise. The environment around you puts too much pressure for you not to be. But on the other hand, you will starve if you are too tough. Life isn't all about peace and flowers and yoga mats, but life also isn't all about war and violence and fighting. There's a balance. That's the duality. The dichotomy. The juxtaposition. Whatever you want to call it.