I am an over-thinker and over-analyzer. There’s always been mental chatter in my head and it doesn’t take much for me to get lost in it if I’m not careful. In fact, I have a long history of hanging on to feelings that really don’t serve me well.
When I first met my husband he was very into meditation. I think he recognized pretty quickly that I’d benefit from it so he’d periodically try to get me to sit down, calm my crazy monkey-mind and just breathe. I never could do it. Quieting my mind was terrifying. So terrifying that I would break into tears every time I tried it. That was the end of that. (The meditation, not the husband!)
Fast-forward to my 200-hour teacher training last summer. When we hit a particularly challenging weekend in the program, our teacher reminded us that we are not our thoughts, we are not our emotions, we are not our circumstances. To me, it was the equivalent of being hit upside the head with a 2×4. It was a concept so foreign to me, that it was life-altering in a “The World is Round Not Flat” kind of way. It’s such a simple insight that makes sense, but it was huge.
Which is why I was really thrown off my axis yesterday when I got side-tracked by something so minor. I let something ridiculous ruin my day because I managed to allow it move into my head, rearrange the furniture, paint the walls an ugly color and put its feet up on the coffee table. I was cranky and angry and I didn’t have the ability (or the desire) to stop it.
At the end of the day I had a “Fuck it—I’m going to yoga and I’m going to do an aggressive practice” kind of attitude. I slapped my mat down on the floor (I hate people who do that), grabbed my props and hurled myself onto my mat with a huff.
My mentor is out of the country, so the class was taught by a sub—a sub I know, but whose class I’ve never taken. It was the fastest, most challenging class I’ve had a long time. The focus was on back bends—a particularly difficult thing for me because I don’t have a lot of mobility in my upper back (mostly because I don’t push myself to do them enough). I feel like she sensed something was going on with me because she spent a lot of time helping me make adjustments throughout the class.
Ten minutes into the practice, I was so focused on what was happening on my mat, that I completely forgot about the crap I was preoccupied with all day. It was a not-so-gentle reminder that the bullshit doesn’t matter. Let it go and it will.
It was exactly what I needed.
So here’s what I’m grateful for today:
1. I’m grateful that my husband returned from his trip safely.
2. Yoga teachers who push you out of your comfort zone.
3. Hot bubble baths after a hard yoga practice.
What are your grateful for today?