Tag Archives: ease

The Choice Is Yours

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Always in the process of becoming,
always in flux,
life is movement, not stagnation…
so why do we yearn for
safety, stability, routine?
Our minds are hardwired
for familiarity, comfort and ease,
but our greatest potential
and truest growth
exist just outside of the comfort bubble.
Transcending the constraints
of the life we knew
will feel, by definition, uncomfortable,
as we leave the safety of our bubble
and venture into possibility.
Ask yourself who you’d rather be
as you lie on your deathbed about to take your last breath:
A person who took the familiar path
or
A person who lived an extraordinary life.
The choice, dear one, is yours.

Shift to Allowing

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Slowly it dawns on me
how I’ve been complicit
with the old paradigm
all along,
how, out of loyalty to what I was taught,
I sabotaged my own hopes and dreams,
and pushed away opportunities
for healing and expansion,
to choose what was familiar–
and this was all largely
unconscious.
It also dawns on me
that the way I was back then
was the only way I could be,
and like every other human,
it was only when I was ready
that I could change.
Still working on changing…
could I shift to allowing?
From pushing to flowing,
from effort to ease,
from toiling to relaxing,
from fighting to surrendering?
I’d like to see myself
after forty days and forty nights
of relaxing into the flow of being.
So be it.

How Grace Flies In

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Ah, how Grace does swoop in
with so many blessings
when my heart is open
and my mind relaxed.
I let the old Lorien die—
the Lorien who was attached
to her stories of her woundedness,
beliefs in deficiency,
resentment toward her imagined oppressors—
I let that Lorien die.
The new Lorien who emerged
was willing to put more attention on her future
than the old Lorien was putting on her past.
This new Lorien was excited to know her power.
She longed for more and believed she was worthy
of the good life had in store for her.
In this place of faith and confidence
Grace emerged.
And how it has swept into my life
with so many blessings
now that my heart is open
and my mind relaxed.

Give Yourself Permission

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Give yourself permission to take care of yourself,
no one else will give it to you.
It may seem like a selfish act,
but it is only in caring deeply for yourself
that you can extend that same caring to others.
Let your cup be full, your body rested, your mind at ease.
Now you will be in a position
to offer the very best of yourself
to this world that longs to know you.

Don’t Struggle, Bloom

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You are here to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, and with a finer spirit of hope and achievement.  You are here to enrich the world.

—Woodrow Wilson

 

If you’re accustomed to struggling,
let’s try something new.
Work with me here.
Imagine the one thing
you really, really want to do
with this one precious human life of yours,
this huge goal, this amazing project
that would leave you feeling blessed
at its completion.
Then, ask yourself,
Does it have to be hard?
Do I have to struggle to get there?
Imagine opening yourself
to the flow of Universal Intelligence
and allowing yourself to blossom
and expand into your heart’s vision.
Every day
do the work of getting quiet and still,
going inwards, and immersing yourself
in the flow of the energy that created
all that is.
When you become accustomed
to the feeling of universal connectedness
and you develop the capacity
to stay connected
as you move through daily life,
the way is opened up before you.
It doesn’t have to be hard.
This expansion into greater states of being
is the most natural thing in the world
for you to do,
just as a flower turns its face to the sun
delighted to see clear skies
after having weathered the darkest storm,
and in that state of all encompassing light
easily, naturally, beautifully—
it blooms.

Searching for Balance

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Yoga asana practice can teach us so much about our approach to our lives.  If we are hurrying through, taking half-breaths as we move from pose to pose, we’ll probably find ourselves doing the same thing as we fulfill our responsibilities in our daily lives.  If we push ourselves to be stronger, more flexible, feeling dissatisfied with our body’s capabilities, if we judge ourselves as not making the grade in our yoga postures, chances are we’ll find echos of this mindset in our lives off of the yoga mat.

One of my greatest aims as a yoga teacher is to help students feel at home in their own bodies, to meet themselves with compassion and kindness, starting right where they are, and working with what they have in this moment. I had three opportunities to teach today, and I found myself asking my students to search for the balance point between effort and ease.

Not enough effort, and you get bored in the pose, the mind wanders.
Too much effort, and you feel tortured by your body, you might injure yourself.

Search for the place that is just enough, where you feel enough sensation in your body to stay present, but with enough ease to allow for  free-flowing movement of the breath in and out of the body.

Where is this balance point in our every day lives?

I’ve been searching for mine.  I’ve felt quite loony lately, teaching a whole lot, running around taking care of social obligations, being sick, taking care of sick kids, maintaining my meditation practice and my writing practice, worrying about my husband’s thought that we don’t have enough time together.

Where is the balance point in my meditation practice?

How about in my writing practice?  A lot of my posts have been on the longer side, and it has taken several hours to revise and edit and feel comfortable enough to publish.  I tell myself that I’m doing this so that I can free my creative self and become more adept as a writer.  But am I putting too much effort into this work?  Am I trying too hard?  I have tortured feelings surrounding this project, but it’s not the writing itself that tortures me.  I’m actually fine with the amount of effort that it takes to craft sentences that clearly express what I’m wanting to say.  And as I’ve mentioned before, I actually like taking some time to myself to explore my life through the medium of words.

The tortured feelings come from some scared part of me that tells me I’m compromising my marriage, I’m being selfish, and my writing doesn’t matter.  So where is the balance point there?

The last few nights I tried writing downstairs, in the midst of everyone’s nightly activities.  My mother-in-law was watching TV, my husband was bustling around.  It wasn’t the easiest to focus, but I wanted to be present, somehow, even if my attention was focused on my writing.  I’m not sure of the quality of my posts, but I was glad to just stay in the room, for my family to see that I was there.

Tonight I’m back upstairs in my meditation room.  It’s quieter here and easier to focus.  Now I can hear the doubting thoughts even better.  Now I can dive deep and reach for the self that believes in the value of this work. I can search for the balance point between effort and ease.

It seems that finding balance is a moment to moment, day to day, journey.  It has no beginning and no end, and it’s constantly shifting and changing as our lives shift and change.  What feels balanced to me today might not apply to tomorrow; maybe balance comes when we practice detachment, accept life as it is now, take a deep breath, and make decisions from a clear and focused mind.

I breathe in.  This is enough.  I breathe out.  This moment.

I wish for all beings to experience balance in their lives, to experience the place between effort and ease that brings them home to themselves, that helps them to awaken to this moment.

Time to meditate, night night.