Does this cross your head? Telling yourself that things are impossible? I have this a lot, but I also manage to prove myself wrong. Sometimes intentionally, most of the time unintentionally. Let's say I have the innate ability to underestimate myself. Self doubt comes in and I feel defeated even before I get started. And this is very tough to fight with. I sometimes feel so little (pun intended), helpless and weak.
But there is another voice, sometimes it starts very silent, sometimes it knocks me off my feet. It tells me what am I worried about? It asks me why I am doubting myself. It is kind. It is sincere and it believes me. Yes, I know if you hear voices in your head maybe you should go to a doctor. Well I do not need a doctor to know I am mad. I know I am crazy already and it is not such a bad thing to be. ;) Anyway back to this voice... she is kind and she is hopeful. She believes in me much more than I would myself. And she is right, most of the time... all of the time. She knows I am capable of much more than I ever can imagine. And it is not said in a sense of self importance and haughtiness. I say it because we, ourselves are the ones who manage to sabotage ourselves even before we get started. And it's not necessarily our fault. We were programmed to doubt ourselves. The society has taught us that, unfortunately.
It is a process of unlearning the conditional thinking we were born into, to stop listening to the voice of doubt and insecurity and to dig deep and to listen from within. To be able to quiet all of the voices of self doubt and anxiety and to start believing in ourselves, I think that's the power. And most of the time we are result driven. We want results and we are afraid we will not get the results we want. And that stops us from just doing the things we really want to do. We are also afraid of being judged (of being crazy ;) among other things). And we get stuck and trapped. But we can free ourselves, we can free our minds to do the things we think are impossible. We are after all where we are now... Think, five or ten years ago, did you ever think what you are now, what you are doing, what you are capable of. At that time we didn't think it was possible, but look, we make the impossible possible.
'Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast' - Alice in Wonderland.
Keep dreaming, keep doing, keep being.
Maligayang pandaigdigang araw ng yoga. In english, Happy International Yoga Day! 21st of June, summer solstice, such a special day. This year I got to be part of Sanatana Yoga series of videos from forty people from different parts of the world to say what yoga means to us in our mother tongue. You can view this videos on their instagram page. I feel honoured to be part of this.
In Filipino, I said Para sa akin ang yoga ay nagbibigay ng kalusugan sa katawan at nagpapalaya at nagpapalawak ng kaisipan. Tinutulungan ako nitong maging tunay sa aking sarili at mapagkalinga sa aking kapwa tao. Got that? Probably not. For me yoga gives vitality to the body and frees and broadens the mind. It helps me become real to myself and be considerate to my fellow humans.
Yoga gives me that and a lot more. But with a 30 seconds allowance and knowing that there would be others I thought to keep it as short and sweet as I can. For me yoga has become and still is a healing practice. Healing of the body, the mind, the heart and the spirit. And it continues to help me grow as a person. I am forever grateful for those who have pursued this study which in turn also allows it to be available to me today. Like many, I started to practice yoga as a physical exercise, maybe not even that, it was more of a hobby or a distraction not to feel the pain of loneliness. And from teacher to teacher, I learned so much that I still use to my everyday life. I had very good teachers who in their best intentions wanted to impart to me that this could be so much. They showed me how to face my fears, they showed me how to breathe and how to notice my breath. They showed me the patterns that I wasn't even aware of and they showed me the patterns that I was aware of that I didn't want to admit. It was a very confronting journey and everyday it still is. It still hasn't been boring ever since. There is still plenty to work on. Sometimes it is scary work but it is also work I love doing because I know I feel better, I become better. I get closer to that something. Whatever that something is.
Through and with yoga I learn so much, about myself, about others, about the infinite. Yoga to me has become more than just a physical practice. It helps me be kinder to myself and be more human. It helps me accept my human-ness. And it makes me want to be the best of what I can be. Of course I am not perfect. I am far from that. I get moody, I get angry, I get sad, I feel frustration. But I also feel happiness and lightness, I feel kindness radiating. Not all the time. But in these moments of clarity and simplicity, there is so much beauty. I also learned to take things more lighter and more than ever to laugh at my human frailty and enjoy that.
It also shows me how much same we all are, same but also very different. But in a way, we feel the same happiness, we feel the same pain, possibly in different ways. But we all are human. Ugnayan. Yoga. Connection. We are all connected. In this connectedness we feel the same emotions. In this connectedness we can also be strong or weak.
I wish you all the happiness and health this world has to offer. May we all be happy and healthy and blessed. Thank you for sharing this yoga journey with me.
To be able to find work that we love doing. I think that is such an achievement. To be able to do something we love everyday and to keep loving it everyday. Of course there will be times when we kind of grow tired of what we do as well, it's not a fairy tale where everything ends with happily ever after. We get frustrated and we grow tired. But to keep finding the love and the passion for what we do, I think this is some sort of fulfilment. And if we do love what we do, we will also do our best in perfecting this craft, in keeping on improving and finding things to do better, because we just love it.
I've tried as long as I could to make yoga separate from my way of living, because I wanted to keep the love for yoga alive. I didn't want to come to a point that I lose the love because of my expectations of yoga. And sometimes that is true, sometimes it is not. I still do not consider myself as a yoga teacher, and I probably never will. I'd rather be called a yoga practitioner and I'm just sharing the little I know. Because I have felt the benefits and to keep something so good would be a way of selfishness. I do feel blessed that I can combine this sharing my passion for yoga with an IT job. The IT job keeps me a bit more critical, machine language, 0 and 1, yes and no. And I also love this IT job, I often say because the machine doesn't have feelings, it does what it is told to do, without putting emotion.
The human being is much more complex than the machine. The human being has so much experiences, so much depth and knowledge that sometimes there is no simple answer to the questions. We all have different nature, we all got a different way of nurturing. I cannot debug a human being as I can with a machine. I never know what is going on in the back of their minds, how they are feeling, what are their concerns and what will happen. But that also makes it beautiful. Because even though we are different, we find similarities in our experiences and we try to connect to others in our own way. And I think as long as we do it with kindness and love, we can find a middle point. Communication and openness is the key but it is not always so straightforward.
We work it. We do our best. We keep trying. We persevere. We believe.
No rain no flowers, no mud no lotus. There is always pain, or suffering. These are things that we cannot avoid. It is part of life. If we do not know what suffering is we also cannot appreciate the absence thereof. Life always seem to have its' ups and downs. Sometimes we feel like it is always down. But I think these downs build us up, stronger, better and more resilient. We learn to fight. We learn to be innovative and creative. Without these set backs, it would be, I dare say.. boring.. And yes there are days when we feel like, we have had enough of these set backs but time heals all of it. Sometimes we feel like we do not have time, that everything has to be done now. And it makes us feel frustrated and disheartened. But we know, we have to keep on going. For stopping is not an option. Slowing down is and option, but quitting.. Quitting is for quitters, however redundant that is. We step back, assess the situation and think of another plan. Because there is always a way.
We all want a better world right? They have written songs about this, made great speeches over this, they wrote about it and they spoke about it and yes we are still fighting for it. We are not there yet and sometimes it does get frustrating, like one step forward and two steps back. But we keep fighting, we keep believing the human-kindness. We do things our way. We keep ourselves informed. We research and we listen. Not everyone can be speaking at the same time. We communicate. We do not lose hope. We will rise up from the mud and into the sun, into the brightness. We deserve that, everyone does.
Don't quit now. Fight the good fight. Love.