Updated: Jan 29
Welcome to the new decade. An ending and a beginning and as is traditional around this time of year we take time off and resolve to start afresh. To be fitter, happier, more productive, comfortable, not drinking too much, regular yoga classes, three days a week……
We all have this tendency to narrate a new story for ourselves but more often than not, change doesn’t come easily, if at all.
The hardest part about changing is not to make the same choices as you did the day before and probably the twenty years before that.
If you sit and meditate over a period of years you will notice that on a daily basis you think the same thoughts over and over, day after day. Those same thoughts lead to the same feelings that lead to the same behaviours and the same experiences which roll back into the same thoughts and feelings ad nauseam. Even if our behaviours are unwanted, unproductive and unhealthy, this is a cycle so hard to break. And it happens so subconsciously we begin to identify with this process as “us” unwittingly shaping our personality.
Fortunately a conscious Yoga practice can combat these cycles and repetitions, making them redundant.
In my recent led classes I have been getting students to stand behind the back of their mat and completely come into the present. Then I ask them to imagine a suitcase in front of them and drop all previous experiences they have ever had into this suitcase. So every moment they have ever experienced in their whole life goes into the suitcase. This suitcase contains the “known” so to speak.
Now for a brief moment they are free from everything that has ever defined them, time, name, body, gender, all roles (work, wife, father, sister, friend, etc) and all concepts of Yoga.
From this place they step onto their mat, figuratively the “unknown”. Practicing in this way encourages us to drop the hardwired belief systems we have about ourselves, our perceptions of what we are and are not capable of. Only from this space can we explore the newness of every moment and embrace the mystery of being alive without our labels and conditioned reactions. A new you is being conceived and birthed right there on your yoga mat :)
Everything that happens is from now on….