In the past year, something has shifted within me. It is both confusing and wonderful.
I cannot put my finger on exactly what is going on, but it seems to be happening in just the right way. One of my favorite quotes is by Arthur Rubinstein, “there are no formulas for living the life you secretly dream about, because if you simply accept and welcome life, it’ll reveal itself to you.”
It is not through effort that you mold the universe to your liking, but from allowing the universe to mold you, and show you the way. When I began doing what I love, which is guiding people how to move their body safely and with intention, I had so much fear. I remember going into my first official yoga class to teach, I felt like I was going to pass out from my nerves. When I look back now, after teaching over 100 classes, I can see clearly that I entered that studio from a place of fear, certainly not a place of love.
And for a second, I almost stopped myself even before I began, because I didn’t believe in myself. I saw so many other teachers doing what I wanted to do, and they were more accomplished, had more knowledge, and were more successful.
Or, so it seemed.
One of the biggest mistakes I made was trying to find the answers outside of myself. I followed this teacher here and that teacher there, I kept reaching for goals, I kept making lists, I began to over think everything, and soon I realized that creating shapes was just the topping on the cake, the real ingredients involved self-compassion, contentment, love and patience. There was no magic pose that made all my challenges go away. If I couldn’t understand the meaning and purpose of my life, and moreover, if I wasn’t working on fulfilling that meaning and purpose, It really didn’t matter how long I could stand on my head, that wasn’t going to make me a happy person.
When I came to a point where I had to listen to my heart, and feel where I should go, I stopped trying to figure things out. I realized that I don’t know it all, and when I listened to my heart, things seemed to be led to more happiness, peace, and freedom in my life.
Problems come and go. Patterns come and go. Sometimes I’m more in tune with my inner wisdom, and sometimes I’m not. On the days that I’m not, I do my best to relax and do something else.
I do my best creative work when I’m connected to that inner wisdom, and it is that inner wisdom that guides me toward the life I’m creating. When I don’t write for ten days, I’m not hard on myself. When I don’t step on my mat for a week, I drop my inner critic, drop my expectations of myself and tell my mind to bugger off.
There will also be days where you feel like nothing is going wrong. Those are the most exciting days to stay present; because they help you grow your awareness muscle. When I stay present, not only am I more connected to that inner wisdom and stillness, but I feel calmer and more at peace with myself. I also realize that I don’t have to identify with my thoughts and feelings. Thoughts and feelings arise, sure, but I don’t have to feed the fire.
The problems begin when I create thoughts about the initial thoughts or feelings. This is also what stops me from simply allowing my dreams to unfold. If I get a thought that’s scared, doubtful, or uncertain, and if I believe that thought, I’m trapped until I see through it. When you stay present, as best you can, you let life unfold. Sometimes it’ll feel like chaos inside of your body, but that’s okay, that too shall pass. It’s the human experience.
Learn to trust that inner voice and when your heart speaks, take good notes.
There is no rush. There is only now.