7 June, 2015
Students and friends often ask me how I have managed to keep up my twice a day meditation practice for nearly 5 years. I can’t say I’ve been completely by the book, meditating every single morning and afternoon without fail, but I’d put my hand on my heart and say I was 90% on and it’s this commitment that’s made all the difference.
You may not be aware, but your whole life is built around your habits. In the first few hours of life, babes in the crib, our mothers had us in routines. Our deep yearning for continuity continues through schooling, careers and our family life. Eating breakfast (or not!), brushing your teeth, putting the keys back on the hook, turning all the lights out before you go to bed; unconscious, repeated behaviour.
Occasionally I like to take a review of my positive habits, the ones that bring me more joy and abundance VS the negative habits, the ones that create obstacles, suffering and tears.
Here are some examples of my good habits: Practising yoga and meditation daily, drinking home made vegetable juice, getting to bed by 9.30pm most nights, flossing, writing gratitudes, loving my mum :)
And the slightly more wicked: Drinking black tea for the caffeine, bingeing on Game of Thrones, eating chocolate at not chocolate times, arguing when arguing was not necessary, addictively checking online news (this gets worse when you’re a parent for some reason)… the list could go on :/
When I review my negative habits I see ways in which I purposefully leak my natural energy – the good stuff that allows and supports us to be our authentic selves.
But why!? I hear you lament.
The answer is we are all doing this, all of the time. Over many years, from childhood we have practised keeping ourselves small and hiding our true selves from the world. This becomes the unconscious habit.
A nice solution is to set a regular tapasya – a small yogi exercise where you choose something small in your life you don’t want to go without and you go with out it!
Over the last month I have been off the black teas, which my mother thinks is in equal parts hilarious and ridiculous. However, I know in my own mind when the tea has more control over me than I do over it, something has to change. This month I have deleted all the news apps from my mobile device... this one will be harder for me than the tea!
What in your life do you think you could live with out – even for one week?
By undergoing these small practises in tapasya we build our internal energy container and help fan the flame of our authenticity and self-evolution. Try it and let me know how you go!
My meditation practice has become apart of my unconscious habits. Like flexing a muscle, I resolved to get in the chair every day and get it done. Creating a space in my home to meditate and committing to regular times in the day have helped. I have also lost all embarrassment and have no shame, meditating in cars, planes, airports, cafes – you name it. It has helped that my partner and family are supportive, they are understanding when I nip away for twenty minutes and reappear refreshed and present.
Through my practice I have found and continue to find a deeply satisfying rest that helps my body to self-regulate and heal. I have been able to release a lot of stuff from the past and step up to a place where I naturally feel more content and at peace.
During a series of personal yoga coaching with a student, we focus on developing a personal meditation practice alongside identifying and practising healthy habits. If undergoing your own personal transformation is of interest to you, please get in touch.
& lots of love