It's fair to say that not all of us balance this well in life. The image on the left is yogi, teacher and friend Andrea Everingham of Manchester's One Yoga Studio. The beauty in the clean lines of this posture is fully inspiring right, but for me, I'm usually more like the Celeste Barber version of these kind of poses, as seen below. So what I'm saying is that yoga is a discipline and a practice, and what does the word 'practice' mean?
Practice ˈpraktɪs/ noun
So we practice things in life in order to get better at them, or to become adept at them yes, and in committing to finding and maintaining practices that help us deal with mental and emotional knocks in life, this can be in some instances, quite literally life saving. As we move through life, it is inevitable that there will be things we experience which will knock us off balance and leave us feeling disorientated or confused, however staying in that state is not an inevitability, it's something you can instead, choose to do something about. Doing something about it can require the same devotion and discipline as a regular yoga or exercise practice and is just as important. Here's why...
Imagine yourself in a situation you did not foresee at all, one which throws you off centre, one which challenges your responses because you are not sure how to react, or you react from an angry, defensive or triggered place. In such times, having a practice to bring you back into balance is crucial, so why wait until you're in it before devoting yourself to something that will help you win it?
For me, this 'balancing' of my life comes through mindfulness practice and learning the art of letting go. Through taking a breath, pausing and reflecting before responding to the things that challenge me, through calling in great self love and self compassion when I am 'in my stuff', and through compassion and insight into other people's behaviours and motivations, all help me stay grounded and centred.
I've begun to notice the more I have practices which support me, the better I get at knowing that often 'reacting' is quite literally the 're-acting' some old wound or hurt, and that if I just let the cool breezes of patience, acceptance and love wash over me, then I usually find what I will refer to as the 'Space of Grace' - my phrase for the blissful presence of inner knowingness that needs nothing to validate, vindicate or make wrong either myself or another person, instead accepting the other point of view is exactly that, another point of view, which invariably comes with a whole other set of triggers, conditioning and stories to tell. If I don't let myself get hooked, the bait will hover over another fish, and I find myself un-limited by old stories. It's important! This practice saves us from all of the dramas and the petty longings, all the illusions and the false judgments. Of course there will be times when they creep in, it's hard not to let a lifetime's conditioning run the show, but the first step is bringing awareness to your own reactions, looking a little deeper at why they are there, and making the decision to change the script. When we do this, all of a sudden there will come a moment where you fully recognise that you've not reacted in the same way to an old hurt, you observe that it's washed over you, leaving you feeling instead pristine and clear, proud to have changed an old story. How good that moment feels - new neural pathways will begin to grow, erasing the gnarly bits of your psyche, adding in contentment, harmony and bliss. Sounds good right? If you answered yes then here's a little gift for you, a 5 minute calming meditation as a start to support your practice, as you cultivate peace, mindfulness and your very own 100% bliss vibe! Enjoy xx
CHANGE YOUR LIFE!
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