Spring is this gorgeous time of renewal. Of rebirth. And for me, this year is especially true. So many areas of my life are changing at the moment. From plans from a new car (my poor Kia is on her last legs), plans to move house, eating healthier, culling all the ‘stuff’ that just accumulates over the years… I’m finding myself in this interesting place of transition and change. A part of me is really excited by this, whilst another part of me can be quite threatened by all these changes. As I can be overly emotional and irrational at times, I know to be very aware of those parts of myself.
At this point, I should mention I’m writing this at 4.30am on a Monday morning. I couldn’t sleep because I was laying in bed thinking about all these changes - hence the blog.
Yesterday afternoon, we took the dogs for a walk up in the Dandenong ranges (outside of the national park area). During that walk, what I noticed, and have been noticing more and more is how present I am to the moment. I notice the little flowers, I literally stop to smell the roses, I smile at all things nature and appreciate the frustrating moments in my day just as much as I appreciate the loving, easy, happy moments of my day. Why is this?
Well first, let me clarify that I was not this person 10 years ago. Even 5 years ago. I was wishing my days away. I was unhappy in my work and lived for my weekends. Then, when the weekends came, I was miserable because I was counting down the minutes until I had to be back at work again etc etc. I was unhappy with my body and agitated with relationships in all areas of my life. If I think about why this was, why I was as unhappy as I was, it comes down to being uninspired. I was alive, but I was not living.
As I get older I seem to be getting happier, more present, more attuned to my body, more confident in my relationships, more accepting of others, kinder, more patient… Is this due to age? Perhaps. But then again I know many people who seem to get grumpier as they age so maybe the older and wiser rationale is not the reason. Perhaps just a part of it. Without any bias, I know in my heart of hearts yoga has gradually changed my life - for the better (which is why I’ve opened a studio for others to enjoy). It has slowly chipped away at all the bitterness I once held and taught me to enjoy the moment. The beauty of yoga is its power to have an immediate impact upon how we feel during class and hopefully for some time after, and it truly does become a way of life. It becomes something that penetrates every part of our being so that we feel yoga in every moment of every day.
Yoga was the reason I changed my uninspired life to one that brings me so much joy I sometimes have to stop and pinch myself to check it is real. A yoga retreat 5 years ago was the spark that totally changed my life's trajectory. Even though I’d been practicing for years by that point, it was this time away, the freedom to quietly reflect without distraction that allowed me to make the life changing decisions I continue to work toward. I owe so much of my happiness to those seven days away. Before that retreat, I didn’t believe I was worthy of enjoying my life. That the monotony of work, sleep, work, sleep was it for me. Turns out, with many years of personal, deep work, I’ve realised I am worthy of it! As is everyone.
This is not to say I don’t have daily struggles. I do. I really do. But how I feel about those challenges is completely different. I don’t get hung up on the petty stuff anymore, I am grateful for the challenges as I know they are teaching me valuable lessons. My automatic tendency now is to look for the positive rather than dwell in the negatives. And this has been key to living a lighter, happier, more wholesome life.
As I conclude this blog, I can hear the birds chirping outside. Sure, I could still be in bed getting a few more ZZZ’s, but it’s also pretty amazing that I’m up bright and early (this is my usual get up time anyway) listening to the world as it wakes. A reminder that every day, and every moment of everyday is an opportunity for change. An opportunity to embrace transformation. To be a little kinder toward ourselves and others. To take risks. To clean closets and just freshen our lives up. And there really is no better time to be thinking about and embracing change than in spring.
Whilst I’m sad about my car, and I hold onto way too much clothing I will never wear again, I know it is in the act of letting things go - out with the old and in with the new - that I free myself. A car or an old dress is just a symbol. Remember that. Because how we deal with change of any kind will influence how we live our lives. The choice is yours.
Be brave. Be open. Be the best version of you.
Lots of love,