Tuesday, February 02, 2010
I'm desperately seeking an oasis of calm
This morning, I was taking a yoga class and trying my best to be “present.”
I tried to focus on my breathing – very slowly in, and then equally slowly out. I tried to remember not to hold my breath and not to breathe through my mouth, my usual means of getting air in and out. It's amazing that this isn’t second nature.
I tried to get my body into poses that felt foreign and verged on uncomfortable. Put simply: I tried to stay within the confines of my yoga mat for the full 90 minutes of the class.
I say tried, rather than did, because being “present” – without thinking about my future to-do lists or my past gosh-I-didn’t-do lists – is not easy. In fact, it’s a Challenge with a capital C. I’ll be doing fine for a while, but then some minuscule thought worms its way into my brain, and I’m down a rabbit hole. I know this is why meditation success has eluded me, too.
I’ve only recently begun doing yoga, though I've been thinking about it for years. It’s been hard to tear myself away from the endorphin rush of spin classes. But I know it’s good for me.
“Everyone is here to learn something," the instructor said this morning. "The limber people are learning to be strong. The strong people are learning to be limber. It’s all about practice.”
Frankly, I know I’m not limber, and I suspect I’m not strong either. I guess I’m there to practice everything. And especially to practice how to be “present.”
I hear people constantly talking about how much they dislike the frenetic pace we all live in today. There’s almost no escape. I don’t know anyone who LIKES this pace, yet we are all victims of it. I’m not sure there is a cure for this – but I can see clearly that the ability to distance yourself at least temporarily from this crazy frenzy is one way to lessen the negative impact.
Being a business owner is a blessing and a curse. I happen to consider it mostly a blessing, but I admit that being unable to turn off the noise in my head is a curse. For now, I’m going to continue to seek calm in my yoga sessions. I’m going to practice and practice and practice until my 90 minutes is an oasis in my frenzy. And then maybe my frenzy will be less so.
Are there any businesspeople out there who have achieved this yoga oasis and can give me encouragement? Or maybe some folks who have discovered a different way to cope with life circa 2010? Enlighten all of us, please!