When I was younger, I remember telling myself: "When I'm twenty-one I'll have my shit together." I was attached to a notion of 'someday' complete with love, home, and healed self-image. I figured I'd be done with my self-destructive thoughts and reactions, and I would somehow radiate peace on the daily. Whoops.
Now, don't get me wrong, I still desire my 'someday' story of reality, but I also make a conscious effort to honor who I am today.
Together Does Not Mean You Do Not Come Apart
What if the goal was not to always be together but, instead, to embrace who you were when you came apart? This is self-love to me. On our mats, we are constantly being challenged to do more. And, we kid ourselves that this challenge is about the physical mastery of a pose. Ultimately, the challenge on the mat (and in our lives) is not a physical one. Our challenge is to come alive.
Do more falling. Do more witnessing. Do more laughing. Most of all, to do more accepting. Can you accept yourself when you are not the 'best' student in the room? Can you love yourself when you are crying on the floor over a sweetie? Can you stay with the discomfort when you realize your stories are driving you bonkers!? Can you be vulnerable to your humanity?
When I teach, I often say that "the poses do not have opinions." In fact, all the opinion in yoga class is your own sweet mind. Sure, some things have different feelings, but the attachment, the categorization, the drama, that is all of your own creating. Sometimes, we need to destroy a little to learn a lot.
Messy Is Empowering
I get it. We love the feeling of being in control. Control is sexy. Control is way more marketable then: I-just-wrote-our-appointment-on-a-receipt-because-I-(again)-do-not-know-where-my-planner-is-… (True story.) But, control is also a delusion. And, it's a delusion that hurts because you never can master it!
There is hope. We can learn to stop being control junkies. We can grow. Energetically, living within staunchly defined parameters (aka- control) actually diminishes power and personal agency. A need for control inhibits personal growth! Notice, do you define your worth by a living with a sense of control? Do you also have a ton conditional self-loathing?
Now, don't get me wrong I'm not advocating a lawless free for all. I am advocating that our personal responsibility come from our hearts and not our judgements. And, to transcend our mental parameters, we need to flail sometimes.
Messy is necessary. This is why we practice. We practice to lose the delusion of control. We practice to defy our own mental rigidity. We practice to be more.
Life is not meant to be controlled; life is meant to be experienced.