As another year of my journey is in the books, there are many projects on my mind. They span many subject areas like more time in meditation, more consistent yoga practice, seeking healthier nutrition and the biggie…writing a book. This is , of course, in addition, to doing my best at work and keeping in better touch with family and friends. Seems like a tall and lofty order. The trick here is not to put too much pressure on myself in seeking these goals. Further, said objectives should not be unrealistic. By that I mean like writing my book in one fell swoop. Also, it can lead to frustration. Many a time, have I attempted to learn a skill only to set myself up to fail by not devoting the time, energy and practice needed. I wind up failing then quitting. Goal denied.
Meditation is the ability to touch the boundlessness of our soul. When I make a conscious effort to meditate, my energy is uplifted, my mood is better and my physical being is energized. For me, the success of my practice starts with small steps. If I have not meditated in awhile, I set small time increments like five minutes. Doesn’t sound like much but I am better able to quiet the mind. The most I have every been able to sit mindfully is about twenty minutes. Practice and consistency brings me to my place of zen. First goal for year 65 is to sustain my practice.
The idea of “practice” for me is about keeping disciplined and its an ongoing lesson to learn. I have many interests in wish I seek to excel , all of which take time and effort. Resting on your laurels isn’t the way to stay sharp. I neglect to realize the incredible effort that elite artists, athletes, writers and musicians must put forth in honing their craft. I even marvel at the skill of my yoga instructors. I seek the freedom and lightness that just exudes from them. It is like watching the flow of life. When I ride, I must make continual flowing adjustments in my communication with the horse to create a flowing ride. We become as one.
Next mountain to climb is to better nutrition. As time had passed, so has my metabolism. Pounds that I once found easy to shed, have become harder to do so. I am convinced that much of our food had addictive ingredients. Mostly in processed foods. I am looking to get by to natural food and eliminate the processed crap. Working with my herbalist, I am embarking on natural remedies that will hopefully eliminate my raging acid reflux and other gut issues. I am swearing by apple cider vinegar bitters. Things have calmed down a bit. Pharmaceuticals are not the answer. Another addition to my diet are natural cold pressed juices and water based kefir. I love the products from “The Juice Laundry” in Charlottesville, Virginia. They have the best juice around. Next, a trip to the mat.
Yoga, in my eyes, is a sweet fit in my fitness plans. Between the community of like-minded people to the complete release asanas bring, and learning how to “breathe”. The hardest lesson to learn so far has been to not compare myself to others in class and think I should be further along as I watch extremely flexible youngsters make practice look easy. Comparing out spoils the freedom in trusting your communication with your physical and spiritual self while in a pose. It is more about creating space in your body to allow expansion and reach beyond self imposed physical limitations. I can’t is replaced with “I can”. Yoga compliments my meditation. Aerial yoga has allowed me to dream of levitation. I have yet to try an inversion but am excited about the prospects. Sweet things will come with continual practice.
I have always wished to write a book. The major hurdle has been overcoming the self imposed idea that no one wants to really read about what I have to say or my life experiences. I guess, trust in the process of the universe is in order. I realize that there are many books out there that deal with spirituality, life lessons and personal growth but I am hopefully that maybe, some of my insights might inspire others. I am going to try to share practical experiences over the course of my time here. I actually have chapter outlines. That is an accomplishment all by itself. It is about being up on the high dive and having the courage to jump and trust that my work will bring interest.
Here are some things that my heart sing. Showing love in the face of hate, an awakened social conscious, appreciating the best in all of us, lending a helping hand to “all”, remembering the principles of what this country was founded on, a well cooked meal, music from the heart, courage in spite of adversity, the sound of my grandson Wyatt’s laugh, the nuzzle from a horse, celebrating diversity, the connection I have to the horse when I massage them, and the big one…being grateful for the precious everyday miracles. My zen is the inspiration that I receive from stories of courage and redemption, music that gets my adrenaline pumping and being in touch with the quiet of nature. Meditation brings it all together.
Ahh, yes, its truly a sweet life. Till we meet again, Namaste!