You don’t have to be a student enrolled in school to get that back-to-school feeling. Regardless of the weather, Labor Day weekend marks the end of summer and the beginning of fall. It’s a part of our culture to feel a transition as August turns to September….and the transition that we feel is an opportunity. It's an opportunity to bring back a little discipline and a lot of devotion. I like to think of back-to-school as back-to-practice.
In this spirit, I'm asking myself some questions and I invite you to join me.
First question: What am I devoted to?
Take some time to reflect on all of the relationships, projects, situations and/or topics in your life. Listen to your heart…the quiet whisper of your heart. Feel deep down into your gut. Be patient with yourself so that you can discern your deepest truth. This is a great inquiry to take to your mat. Let your practice inform you. What is important to you? What do you value? What is closest to your heart? What brings up your passionate enthusiasm? What brings you heartfelt joy?
Create a list of top priorities. You can go one of two directions with this:
· Identify your top three for a laser-sharp focused perspective from which to move forward.
· Choose one priority in each category of your life (home, work, educational, physical, and spiritual) as a way to organize yourself for a broad sweep make-over.
Second question: Am I living a life well aligned to my priorities? Am I living my resistance or my dreams?
This is worth a second reflection. At the end of your day, take a mental review of your activities and conversations. Where did you spend your time? Where did your attention go? Where are you thriving? Where are you stuck? Try not to make excuses…you’ll want honest answers. But listen to your mind’s rationale…you’ll want to know your blocks. Do this for two or three days so that you can make a fair assessment.
Now, return to your list of priorities. Following each priority, write the following three points:
· Describe the current state of affairs
· Report the resistance, the blocks and the challenges.
· State your dream-come-true outcome or scenario…write it down there in black and white.
Third question: What daily practices need to happen to support me in moving forward towards my dreams?
Here’s where you consider your practice. How can your practice support you in living well? Do you need to meditate, to journal, to breathe deeply? Is your asana practice regular enough to anchor you? Would reading supportive books or listening to podcasts help you stay focused? Is it time for you to dust off your practice by visiting a different studio, trying a different yoga style or taking a retreat? Are there classes or social groups aligned to your dreams…like a vegan cooking class or an evening of kirtan/chanting?
Think outside the box…because there are NO LIMITS to what might support you in making changes and manifesting your dreams. Check my schedule for offerings outside the yoga studio!
Now, take action! I will say in all seriousness: you have to do something different on a day-to-day basis in order for change to happen. Make a simple and realistic plan and stick with it.
If you do the same meditation and the same Tuesday night yoga class, you’ll be living the same life and getting the same results. Don’t live the same day over and over for ninety years and call it a life! Not when you’ve got your yoga practice! If you need support and encouragement, reach out to your yoga teacher…me!….even if you’ve never spoken to me before. As a matter of fact, in offering you support on your journey, I get support for my journey!
August has turned to September...get back-to-practice!