Originally written June 9, 2018
I’m on a flight from Portugal. Mike and I took a two-week vacation to visit more European countries that had been on our wish list- Paris, France – Barcelona, Spain and Lagos in the Algarve region of Portugal and Lisbon Portugal.
But you wouldn’t know that. You wouldn’t know either that I completed and graduated from my yoga teacher training on May 6. You wouldn’t know that instead of “getting out of marketing” like I had set out to do a year ago, I accepted in full time role in April at the company I’ve been working for the past year.
You wouldn’t have known any of that because I have been silent on the blog. I let this blog, this place that once was an outlet for me, become overwhelming and an added pressure that I didn’t need or want. Every time I wrote something “out loud here” – like “yay! like I’m going to become a yoga teacher!” I inadvertently but simultaneously put a crushing pressure on myself to accomplish whatever I just stated because I knew in my head that if I didn’t succeed at what I just said I was going to do- I’d get that embarrassed, pit of guilt in my stomach- the one that says in my head “they’re disappointed in you” – “you didn’t give it your all.”
But with the yoga training, I did give it my all. My all just didn’t become a yoga teacher. But my all learned so much more than postures and poses. My all challenged myself in ways that I haven’t in a long time, getting outside of my comfort zone. I learned about life. About ways to live healthier, about personal tools and techniques to get thru difficult times—I was surrounded for 200 hours with some of the most strong-willed, inspiring women I had ever met: they taught me so much but the biggest lesson was that you can assume all you want about someone else but you NEVER really know what inner demons they are struggling with or how their history has become who they are. Everybody has to “stuff” to deal with so it’s crucial to be compassionate even when you may not fully understand.
Today’s blog is me saying that “I have stuff too.” I live a beautiful, blessed life, but I am scarred, as we all are. Having compassion for myself takes more effort than it comes with ease. Instinctually, my brain will first tell me what I’m doing wrong or what I’m lacking—thing like how I’m not as successful as I thought I would be by this age—how I have a gross stomach compared to girls on my Instagram feed – how I’m not a good enough friend or family member because I don’t make it to every event. Although those first thoughts are what I’m not doing well enough, I am practicing noticing the negative thoughts and then proactively remind myself that even if it’s not going as expected, I am still trying my best- that I am where I am supposed to be.
During our teacher training graduation ceremony, each of us had to choose something to “let go of” or something to “move into.” I decided to let go of something—to let go of (or work towards letting go of) being worried that I’m always letting people down or living up to what I think others expect of me. I tied a red string around my right wrist and symbolically, it is said that it will break and come off when I have overcome this lesson. So this red bracelet might be with me to the end. It was when I was anxious on the plane ride home from Portugal and and thoughts were racing through my mind as I stared at the seat in front of me, unable to read my book, that I started thinking about the promise I had made to myself, and to my fellow yoga sisters. It’s time to start making progress towards that promise by trying to be more concerned with my happiness than the judgements of others.
My first attempt at that is to blog when I am inspired. And I was inspired to share so wrote this blog post I did.
This is the Inspiration Initiative, after all.
Love & light,
p.s. here are some pics from our trip! 😍