I am often reminded during my yoga practice to be present in my body. We are encouraged to be present in the moment and listen to our bodies. I consider my yoga practice to be an hour and a half long moving meditation as I focus on being present in the moment and in my body.
My Jim Rohn weekly newsletter came to my inbox last week with the reminder to be present. He said “Wherever you are, be there.” This applies to yoga, work, time spent with loved ones, etc. Wherever you find yourself in a particular moment, challenge yourself to stay in that moment and do not let your mind wander to other things, tasks or “to-dos” that you need to get done. If you allocate your time effectively and balance it between work and play, you will not find the need to stray from the moment.
I work very hard on this and am still working on its mastery. Due to the fact that I am self-employed, I often find my mind wandering from the present and thinking about my business, a phone call I need to return or an email I need to write. It is bad practice as I am not giving my current circumstance my full and undivided attention. Instead of fulling enjoying the moment, I divide my attention in 10 different directions, never really accomplishing anything.
Jim also said, “Give whatever you are doing and whoever you are with the gift of attention. On the way to work, concentrate on the way – not the work. Pay attention. Don’t just stagger through the day.”
I challenge you to take this on board over the next week. In what areas of your life can you become more present. Think of the people and the situations that have been suffering due to your lack of attention. Take on the challenge and measure your results.
I practice Yoga on average three times a week. I find that the breathing exercises and meditation practice have had profound effects on my well-being. I found myself at the studio nearly everyday during the last week before Christmas. I was inspired by the instructor who led us in our last class before the holidays. She had us in “Warrior” pose for a long period of time. She said that it was her favourite pose and that she loved feeling strong and feminine when holding this posture. For those who are not familiar with Yoga, this pose requires core, leg, and arm strength and an immense amount of concentration. This got me thinking about the concept of a warrior and what I had learned at a recent event.
A few weeks earlier, I had the good fortune of attending an amazing business conference centered on Personal Development in Whistler, BC Canada. We had the opportunity to hear from an amazing speaker named Thomas Crum. As an Aikido instructor, Thomas is very fluent in many breathing and centering techniques. He ended his presentation with his description of a warrior. He said something along the lines of….’A Warrior is someone who can cut through their stories to operate from a higher place of purpose.’ He used the word story to describe the legitimate or illegitimate excuses we make that hold us back in life. He said that in acknowledging and accepting those excuses we can move forward with a greater sense of purpose and meaning.
Often times we look to reasons as to why we have failed in a certain area of our lives, or we allow situations or experiences to give us the excuse we need to keep from accomplishing our goals. Whenever I hold my Warrior pose now, I think of those words and meditate on my stories and how I can work on acknowledging them and carrying them with me in a productive and meaningful way so they do not become the reason why I am not living on purpose.