I was sitting near my friend on her wedding day as she was getting her hair done. I looked over at her face and I could see that her body was in the room, but her mind was in a million other places. Behind her eyes was a map of thoughts did all the relatives get in okay, is the catering going to work out, on and on and on… The details of life, especially surrounding the big things are endless. I could tell my friend was about to miss her wedding day. Her body was there, but her experience was split in a million directions.
I asked her if after her hair was done, if she wanted to join me in a five minute meditation. She said yes, absolutely. We sat in two chairs, chaos all around, and breathed for five little minutes.
In that five minutes she became present to the beauty of the day. Her mind settled and released the unnecessary thoughts that were blocking her experience, and when she opened her eyes, there she was. She was back in her body, suddenly full of life and joy.
To this day, she thanks me for that moment.
The difference between surviving and thriving, is almost always in the perspective. It’s in what type of breath your taking in. Are you gasping in short shallow breaths to serve only the purpose of the moment? Or, can you breathe in big and ride the moments like a wave – whether tumbling inside it, or gliding on it’s crest, always with a laugh, just because your in the ocean at all!?
That is what our yoga practice is, friends. We take that daily moment to get inside our experience, instead of hovering all around it. Sometimes there’s resistance, because most days are not our wedding day. Most days are pulling through the grind to realize the bigger picture. But our practice gives us the touch of that big picture now in the present moment. Usually it takes a moment to get passed the stuff that doesn’t feel so good, and then we travel deeper inside our body and mind, and find that at our core we are peaceful. Just below the surface of stress, there’s a well of abundance that encompasses all the good and bad, and gives us the gift of presence. So we don’t wait to look back at the end of a particular journey and appreciate it. We get to feel the sweet and saltiness of life more potently in every moment.
This month notice the times when you are only half there. Gripping on for survival, racing through just to get done, or just dull and bored with the moment. Take a deep breath and loosen the grip, slow the gate, or shine your eyes. This life is made up of a bunch of unmarked moments that you can either survive through, or drink in, and thrive on.