Happy New Year!
Recently, I decided I wasn't going to get caught up in the whole "New Year's Resolution" thing. I realize that the beginning of a new year is time for some to set new goals, reset old goals, take stock of their lives and set a new course. Totally works for many people - awesome for them. In the past though, I was that person who had a set list of goals that needed to happen by a certain age, at a specific time, or else. That "or else" left little room for modification and left me wide open for disappointment. I had assigned so much attachment to the timeline that when things changed (as things often do), it fucked with my ego. I felt like I had failed. I wasn't in the present - I was always in the past (rechecking that timeline) and in the future (what was left unchecked and how much time did I have to get it done). Exhausting!!! Talk about the anxiety and undue pressure I had put on myself. WTF was I doing?
Then - yoga happened to me. Real yoga. It wasn't some fabulous vinyasa or a challenging Bikram class or even a restorative flow that woke me. Somewhere in my search for the bomb yoga class, I discovered that it wasn't the teacher or studio or style, it's always the breath and the sacred space I created for myself to quite the thoughts and let things that don't serve me leave my soul, especially the things that fuck with my ego and keep me stuck in the past. THAT!!! I stopped focusing on the asanas and stopped assuming what came next and began focusing inward. It totally made me take pause... in class I couldn't put any stock into what was coming, and I couldn't hold on to the things that had just happened. I was detaching from expectations. Wait - so this whole "Non-attachment" thing was not only a real thing, but it was possible? Non-attachment, or Aparigraha, is my one Yama* that I had issues with from the beginning of my yoga journey, but I began to understand the importance of releasing attachment. This wasn't just on my mat - I started doing this in life. SAY WHAT???? Am I becoming a real yogi? LOL - who knows? Something I've come to know because of my yoga practice is that focusing on the breath, staying centered, grounding and remaining present is the REAL WORK. And because of this, I promise, I will always set goals - but I don't need the pressure of a New Year's timeline. I will always do the work to create and manifest, but I will be able to breathe through changes and project halts and those little monkey wrenches that life tends to throw.
*Yamas (Social Behaviors/Restraints) and Niyamas (Internal Behaviors/Observances) are the first two limbs of the 8 Limbs of Yoga