Month: April 2015

Seriously

Seriously!!!

A group of us are sitting on chairs in a circle with our eyes closed, hands draped on our laps. Eva walks in the room a few minutes after the class has started, being lead to her seat.

“Smile, you look so serious”, she says, breaking the silence.

All of us broke out into an explosion of laughter.

Eva, has dementia, she has no idea what this class is, which she attends religiously every week.

What she does observe is the silence and serious atmosphere. 

Seriously, concentrating on our breath.

Seriously, following the teachers instructions, including her expressions.

Seriously, entering into a serious yoga regiment.

Eva continued on talking loudly about all a sundry during that yoga class.

She commented about our cat and cow pelvic movements, referring to our chairs as the ‘naughty chairs’.

She mooed and meowed during the sequence of stretches.

We looked at one another, for a moment and then joined Eva and started mooing, meowing and roaring like a lion.

Our raucous laughter filled the room and the corridors.

All my yoga preparation fell to the wayside, moving any way our bodies wished, stretching, wiggling our hips and laughing.

Seriously, this is not supposed to happen in yoga, is it?

Wrong! Yoga has no boundaries or rules. Most of all it does not need to be serious.

We are allowed to laugh, cry, dance, moan, moo, meow, roar and of course there is time for seriousness.

The class ended. Eva got up and kissed one of the ladies on the cheek. We all felt something had changed within us.

This change is that we all shared a special moment, where we felt free to be silly and childish, no one was judging us, we were just being us.

Find laugher in your life, surround yourself with others who laugh and most important do not take life so serious.

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What is your purpose?

purpose1What is your purpose?

Whilst traveling through Sri Lanka I met two extraordinary women.

Both travelling solo, until their paths crossed in India.

The two women were searching for the same thing, a purpose.

Both women appeared to have it all; successful careers, ownership of their homes, financial security.

What more would they want?

Neither knew the answer.

What they did know was that something deep inside them had shifted.

They needed more adventures and exposure to differentness.

What was it that instigated this inner shift?

It was the sameness of their lives,

Some call it the grind of daily life; when sameness becomes oppressive.

Following many days of travelling together, I had a realization.

I too have been searching for my purpose.

Our purpose is growth!!!

All living things need to grow, to thrive.

I used to think my purpose was my role at work, being a mother, teaching yoga…

The problem with a purpose being linked to roles is that our purpose would be forever changing.

Leaving us feeling frustrated, empty, and endlessly searching for our purpose.

When it is simply… to grow.

My new, dear friends, did not have to find their purpose.

Their purpose had not been lost.

All they needed, was to seek out fertile experiences to grow.

So what do you need to do to grow?

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Differentness v Sameness

differentLearning about yourself through difference.

How hard it is for many of us to step into differentness.

Differentness makes us feel uncomfortable, so what do we do?

We keep returning to sameness, either on the holidays we take, the food we eat or, the people we socialise with.

Sitting for seven hours on a Sri Lankan train, in oppressive heat, and people crammed into every available space, I had loads of time to ponder this.

To think about the differences between me and them. Their culture, dress, language, skin colour, food, mannerism and personal space.

The differences they saw in me as I saw in them. There was less of me, and more of them.

Children would stare with inquisitive looks at who this person was with light skin and short blonde hair. Noting in their minds the differences and possibly the sameness as well.

During that exhausting journey, and at points wishing I was home with my sameness. It became apparent that differences are what makes life more fulfilling.

It is not that anything is wrong with sameness, it is that sameness is just that… sameness.

Differentness, turns the wheels and adds more neurotransmitters to your brain.

It is what changes us, expands our horizons and ultimately gives our life a buzz.

As that little boy’s perspective will be forever changed, so will yours

You can only grow through differences.

Place yourself in the uncomfortable, even if you are fighting like mad against it, stay with the feelings until you settle down and then see how you have changed.

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Look for the streaks of light not the glare

Look for the streaks of light not the glare.

Me: “Self, how can I help you feel better?”

Self: “Not sure. I drag myself through the days, weeks and months, feeling empty, like there is no light at the end of the tunnel.”

Me: “What light are you looking for?”

Self: “The light of my happiness.”

Me: “What does this light look like?”

Self: “The thing that will blow me away, shake my world… you know that thing called passion.”

Me: “What’s stopping you, from finding it?”

Self: “I don’t know. I look, search, think and wonder, to no avail; then I give up?”

Me: “Because you can’t find it?”

Self: “Yes!!. Everyone talks about finding their passion, I think I am only one who does not know what mine is.”

Me: “So, you crawl under your covers, in hopes you’ll find it there?”

Self: “Yes!”

Me: “What would if I were to tell you, that passion, is deep inside you, not out there.”

Self: “I am not sure I believe you, because I would have found it by now.”

Me: “How would you find it, if you are searching outside of yourself?”

Self: “But how else can you find it, if you do not look outside?”

Me: “The first step is to trust that you know what it is, even if you do not have the answer yet. The second step is that seeking a passion is way too big for most of us.”

Self: “Then what is it that I am looking for?”

Me: “Your curiosity? Open your eyes, ears and heart to the possibilities in front of you.”

Self: “Such as?”

Me: “A warm, soothing shower… a cup of steaming coffee… a stretch on your yoga mat… a walk in the fresh air… the touch of the soft fur of your cat… looking at your fresh face in the mirror… putting on a freshly ironed shirt… the taste of fresh fruit and sliced toast….

Self: “Then will I find my passion?”

Me: “You will find what you love. Passion is not sustainable, but love is. Passion fizzles, love when nurtured, flourishes.”

Self: “I think I now understand what you are saying. Look for the streaks of light along the way, not wait for the glaring light at the end of the tunnel. These small steps are more powerful than the leap toward the end.”

Me: “You got it!”

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RJMindbody

RJMindbody