Do we really need to change when the year does? Weight loss and self help companies want us to think so. What if our old ways are the way we should be? Are we struggling to change the natural rhythm that makes us who we are?
Perhaps instead of focusing on drastic changes, can we simply embrace the qualities that we want to eliminate or improve and accept them, as we hope others will. What if we were just plain happy with the way we presently are, and focus our energy on developing more love for ourselves and others? Love has to begin from within before it can be spread outward. Living in fear, doubt, denial and anger leads to a lack of self love. You are perfect exactly as you are, the only element of your life that you have to change is your sense of self acceptance.
It is a noble idea to resolve to improve our lives, diets and habits. We may focus on this change intently for a few months, then our goals loose steam. Some of us become discouraged when no visible change occurs in a short period of time, so we drop off and regress back to our old ways. Have you ever noticed how many cars clog the parking lots of health clubs in January then taper off by March? Too often a feeling of failure and regret creep in when we don’t achieve our resolutions. Our expectation to succeed leads us to feel like a failure when we don’t improve “ enough.”
If we are dedicated to making an improvement, planning and preparing ourselves properly is the key to success. A friend asked me for a quick yoga fix to lose weight, my reply was “There isn’t one, it’s a slow and steady path to realize growth.” Over time our bodies will evolve and change, as our minds become calm. Our practice affords us the ability to shape our future, one breath at a time. I always tell people that yoga is a lifestyle not a hobby or workout option. Consistent and steady practice yield success in any endeavor, and as K. Pattabhi Jois said “Yoga is 99% practice and 1% theory.”
An all or nothing approach may work for bungee jumping, however, there can be little steps to climb along the way for most other pursuits, especially yoga. Celebrate every little gain as that is your 100% that day. Just making it to class consistently and doing only a portion of it is a great start, strength and focus will improve with consistency. Take rest as much as you need to then get right back in, without reaction. It takes time to hone the non reactiveness that is possible through our practice.
Our journey through life is filled with challenges and bright spots, allow your practice to fill in the valleys and level off the high points. Balance and an equanimous mind are the best resolutions to make.
Tricia Ptak, MA, LPC, RYT
Tricia is a suburban Detroiter, health and wellness supporter and founder of Chakra Chic LLC. A yoga teacher, mad scientist foodie, counselor and blogger; she shares her love and light with those who don’t even know that they need it. Her classes are built around an exploration of the deeper meaning of the connection that we have to ourselves, are laced with loving kindness and encourage truthfulness. When she isn’t teaching yoga, practicing yoga, or caring for her family, she is concocting in the kitchen, attempts to garden, develops content for her website, reads and cherishes time with great friends. You can find Tricia on Facebook, or on her website .