I am extremely fond of the springtime… and as I sit here and look out of my window at the sun peeking from behind the clouds, and the blossoms on the trees beginning to emerge, my thoughts begin to ponder…
As nature begins to emerge from its winter hibernation and start to sprout new life and growth, I feel a real sense of opportunity for transformation with the change into this season. I feel this shift not only by observing the external changes in the environment, but I also feel this internally within my psyche. The more awareness I gain, the more I feel a symbolic resonance with the change of the seasons and the changes that have been manifesting in my life, almost as if the divine timing of nature is in perfect synchronicity with everything around and within me.
There have been a lot of changes for me personally in the past year, and coincidentally more recently in the past few months as we head into Springtime. Some, if not all of these changes and adaptations have felt very uncomfortable for me in one way or another, and at times they have been a real challenge to navigate. I have moved into my first home, been learning to live with, and how to manage Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and I’ve had to journey through the process of letting a relationship go.
I often look back and reflect on how I dealt with similar situations in the past before I embarked on a spiritual journey with my yoga practice. And there is no denying that I struggled greatly in dealing with what life threw at me. Managing my emotions was never one of my strengths and when significant life events happened, I had adopted a very polarised way of thinking, everything was black or white. I would automatically jump to judging life events as good or bad, thus attaching a lot of power to that labeling. Often there was no in-between, and the rigidity of my mindset often kept me stuck there. I was unable to see life’s events from a bigger picture and would allow myself to get bogged down in the depths of sadness, frustration, and feeling like things never panned out the way I wanted them to. Evidently, this mindset only produced an increasing sense of suffering, I was resistant to surrendering to the process, and really allowing myself to feel.
With the overwhelming intensity of emotions that rushed through me, I had also written off any possibility that maybe things just needed to be the way that they were. That maybe things just needed to be a little uncomfortable, because going through that process would gift me something greater.
Just as the trees and flowers die every year with the transition into winter, once again they will come alive and blossom, bigger and brighter than before.
Life really is just a series of events that happen, and if we label one event to be better than the other we limit our spiritual and personal growth. We end up attaching ourselves to the outcome, or the feeling that will be produced from the desired outcome. When we label and judge, we tend to want to move away from the ‘negative’ feelings and move toward the ‘positive’ feelings, because we have been conditioned to believe that positive is always better than negative. Therefore we lose sight of the potential that uncomfortable situations may provide for us.
With the knowledge and introspection that I have acquired in my yoga practice about myself, my patterns, and conditioning, and coupled with the profound and liberating teachings within yoga philosophy, I have managed to adopt a new way of thinking. This way of thinking enables me to invite the idea that things, life events, and circumstances do not have to fit into a box of good or bad based on my perception or unconscious conditioning. But instead, I find a sense of acceptance and trust that these things can be as they are. Releasing the attachment to the outcome and allowing whatever is present to flow through me with greater ease and grace.
There is no denying that chaos is necessary in order to find balance – so when those moments arrive, welcome them as opportunities for learning and growth. Welcome them as opportunities to move into awareness with grace, to feel all that arises, surrender to the process, and find some compassion for that journey. It’s in these moments that we really start to learn about who we are, and then with that awareness, we have the choice of how we want to respond. It’s in these moments that we can start to become aware of our habitual patterns, our conditioning, and all that doesn’t serve our best interests in each moment.
Sometimes we unconsciously like to keep ourselves stuck… and learning to unstick allows us to really transform our lives. And the key to learning how to unstick is to sit with what is, with no judgment, just awareness.
And with that perspective I am able to welcome all changes that may present themselves to me and my life with an open mind and an open heart, liberating me from the suffering that I put upon myself.
As ever the practice of Yoga enables me to live my life with more equanimity even in the midst of the most challenging circumstances.
It has been my greatest teacher and from the depths of my heart, I hope that this practice can be the same for you.