“It’s been a hard year.”
The most common phrase used in every conversation. There’s no denying we’re tired. Exhausted even. We’re all on board with this sentiment. We’re ten months in from when our lives were flipped upside down and simply put—we’re just DONE.
Something we forget about us humans is our super power of adaptation. I’m not a fortune teller, but early on I knew we’d get through this. No great story unfolds without displaying our powerful ability to adapt to our circumstances. All creatures can do this, but not like us humans. Put us on a mountain, we’ll learn to climb and breathe thin air. Put us on an island, we’ll learn to fish and swim. Take away restaurants, we’ll learn to cook and feed ourselves.
It’s all a matter of survival.
But adaptation doesn’t happen in just the things we do. Our bodies change as well to whatever force we knowingly or unknowingly apply to it. This is why athletes train in high altitudes—so they’re lungs can adjust to less oxygen and their endurance increases. If you look at the past 10 years, you can see how our posture has adapted due to more work on computers and cellphones. If you look at the past 10 months, you may feel how your body has adapted to lack of exercise, more sitting, or increased alcohol and sugar intake (or vice versa for the unicorns that have begun mastering their health). This constant yet subtle adjustment of our bodies is a phenomenon we so easily overlook.
But what you may notice here is that adaptation does not mean progression. It simply means that we’re changing to our environment and circumstances—for better or worse. So to make sure you adapt in a way that’s useful to you, you have to recruit the all powerful mind. Now it’s important to note that the mind adapts also, but we neglect this ability. Why, you ask? Our thoughts are so difficult to distinguish as something separate from ourselves, that we don’t hear what we tell ourselves. Left to their own devices, your thoughts will run rampant and you’ll end up feeling worse than you need to. And these thoughts feel true. For instance, if you tell yourself you’re tired, you will be more tired. Tell yourself life is hard, it will feel hard. Tell yourself you’re not good at something, (in your mind) you won’t be good at it. Ever. The more you tell yourself something, the more your mind adapts to hearing those words and it begins to feel true. But over time, it takes a toll on your physical and emotional well being.
So may I suggest that with a new year comes a new narrative.
No doubt this year’s been hard. I’ve increased my emotional IQ 10xs over (and over and over). And I’ve been mindful to sit in my lows and acknowledge the truth of how I feel. This is healthy for healing and processing. But oftentimes, we linger in our lows far longer than we need to. Not because we still actually feel that way, but because we keep telling ourselves we do. But you can change what you tell yourself. And overtime, as you improve your thoughts, you begin to feel better. Life can feel less hard, more energized, and you’ll be ready to adapt no matter what comes your way. After all, your track record has had a 100% success rate.
The calendar is changing but there is still a long road ahead. I certainly don’t encourage trying to cover up this past year or stuffing away the many emotions you’ve felt. There’s so much there. It’s been filled with things you wouldn’t have done for yourself if not forced. It’s planted seeds and has given many blessings, lessons, and growth. It deserves a moment of silence with Anjali Mudra.
So while we honor 2020 in all its glory, leave the narratives behind that no longer serve you. Bring in new narratives that will energize and renew your spirit. And focus on what you know—that you are capable of far more than you give yourself credit. Look back, see how far you’ve come. You’ve made it. You’ll continue to make it.
On behalf of the whole Ignite Yoga team, I wish you a beautiful 2021. We’re here for it and hope you are too.
PS – don’t forget to comment or share!
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