Tuesday, December 8, 2009
This morning I went to yoga class. Laura, my teacher, has had a very positive influence on me, and especially in this past year. She inspires me every day to stretch, grow (myself and my garden), and love life. Part of what makes Laura so awesome is that each one of her classes- private or group- starts with a philosophical theme that always seems to be just what I need to hear. On a day when I was "in a bunch" and taking everything way too seriously, Laura's theme was about embracing our inner child. We spent the class finding the joy in those postures we detest, and we spent 90 minutes giggling like little kids, having such a blast. I snapped right out of my sour mood, of course.
Today's theme was fearlessness. And yet again, Laura's message hit close to home. To be fearless, we aren't without fear. Rather, the fearless acknowledge their fears, and continue moving forward. Sometimes those fears are reasonable and justified- when we haven't built the strength or flexibility to attempt a difficult posture, for example. In those cases, we need to pay attention to the fears, allow them to protect us. However, for most, and certainly for me, in my life and my yoga practice, fear creates limits beyond that which is reasonable and justified. Today's class was filled with postures and sequences which are ones I *should* practice every day (because I often dislike doing them, because they're hard to do). So the practice in fearlessness for me today was in staying put and breathing no matter how bad I wanted to come out of the posture, in taking that steadying foot off the wall in headstand, and in general, just staying with the discomfort, be it from a shaking hamstring or from a fearful mind.
And of course the message carries over to life off the mat, too. My practice of fearlessness in the studio today was in allowing a little bit of play on difficult projects. Rather than focusing on tangible additions to my inventory, I'm working on experiments. I'm tuning in to the technical issues and challenges with some of these ideas I have for new beads, and making myself work on them, even though the first attempts aren't what I imagined, even though its frustrating, even though part of me just wants to go back to making what I've been making for years. It's always harder than I thought, putting ideas into motion… It's also really fun.
So I'm going to pay Laura's wisdom forward: here's wishing you fearlessness!