Just thinking about writing this post has been making me happy. For a while there, I felt a little bit discombobulated (one of my favorite words) but now I am feeling so much more together. The most amazing part of this has been how the shift has manifested on and off the mat. What pray-tell has led to this shift, you ask. Well, I am grateful for a positive “perfect storm” of experiences and interactions occurring within a short period of time and helping me gain some perspective, clarity, and to find my voice.
One of the first interactions that caused the tide to turn within was a simple chat with a friend. During our conversation, he offered other perspectives on a situation. Not only that, but he asked if a situation was making me happy and reminded me that if it wasn’t, I had the power to change the circumstances. WOW! Seems so simple, but in the moment I wasn’t able to see that I had options.
I also decided to see an Ayurvedic practitioner, and am so glad I did. To make a long story short, I am pitta, kapha, vata (from greatest to least) and my vata was way out of whack thus leading to that out-of-control feeling. I received the healthy tips and have been consistently and mindfully incorporating them into my routine. I have come to realize that the prescription was not the catalyst for the change but the mindfulness with which I am engaging in the activities that continues to allow the favorable results to unfold.
The yoga studio I consider my home studio offered a vision board workshop and not really knowing much about them, I attended. In a word, powerful. I have already established that I can be quite Type-A, so I thought I always new what I wanted and where I was going. During this workshop, I had the opportunity to take these abstract ideas and make them a little more concrete by writing them down and finding images that represent them. I know this board isn’t the be-all-end-all of my goals, but as I created it, I began to prioritize my goals. Now I won’t go into the details of what is on my vision board, but it sits in my bedroom as a daily reminder of what I want in my life and that I have the power to make these internal and external goals a reality.
Finally, I began attending an advanced class at a studio here in Houston. It’s not a rigorous, sweaty class, but a slow, deep one where the teacher scaffolds asana instruction and dovetails information about energy, connection, emotion, gratitude. I have walked away from every class with the feeling that my mind and body have opened up a little more.
Throughout all these interactions and activities, I found my voice again. I have come to realize that when I felt out of control, I allowed things to happen to me and that the strength to say what I need eluded me. Not any longer. This doesn’t mean that I am blunt and inconsiderate in my speech. Rather, I am conscientiously speaking my truth in a way that maintains my empowerment and balance.
The manifestation of this change in my physical practice as well as my daily life can be summed up as: increased confidence to take some risks. I’m facing fears on the mat – trying handstand in the middle of the room (after all, I am aware that I might fall over), attending classes that challenge me mentally and physically (how can I grow if I don’t?), and taking rest when I need it regardless of what else is going on (who is judging me? no one!). Off the mat I am reaching out to people – striving to cultivate new friendships (so what if folks say no to my invitations?) . I am smiling a lot more, sharing myself, and have significantly less fear about being vulnerable (whoa, never thought I would say that!).
Oh, and this has also led to some spontaneous dancing around my apartment. It’s not pretty, but it’s fun.