It’s kind of surreal how I’ve been feeling lately. So much change has occurred in my life in the past month, in the past few months in fact, and yet I feel strangely…calm. Uncharacteristically calm. Dare I say centered?
I never thought I’d see the day when I began to feel comfortable in change. Now, don’t get me wrong, I did my fair share of freaking out. Last weekend at teacher training I flippantly told my friends,
“Yeah, had I had longer to digest the whole moving process I’d have really freaked out.” My closest girlfriend of the group guffawed.
“Oh, you freaked out.”
She was definitely right. I was right too, though, in that I’d have really freaked out given more time. That type of reactiveness doesn’t serve me. I was going to say “doesn’t serve me anymore,” but “anymore” isn’t really appropriate. It never served me. Being reactive only builds tension, angst, nervous energy. It is a lesson, a reminder to work towards an overall sense of calm. Practicing non-attachment is certainly one means of achieving this peaceful disposition. I’ve written before about shifting our inherent nature; not succumbing to “the way we’ve always been;” taking control of our nature and growing, evolving, shifting towards a more positive disposition rather than surrendering to how we are on “autopilot.”
It would be nice to have felt centered throughout the transition, but that is something towards which to work.
Despite feeling grounded and centered in my new environment, despite feeling happy and content, I’ve had anxious energy the past few days. I don’t know why; perhaps I am in need of a gentle spring cleansing emotionally as well as physically.
I’m planning a gentle, whole foods, cleaner-than-usual detoxification plan for the coming ten days or so. Simply resetting the system for spring, embracing Ayurvedic tools, incorporating lots of green juices in with my healthy, wholesome meals and nourishing teas as well. I look forward to it. Many people cleanse to detoxify their bodies from harsh lifestyles that are chemical ridden; I live a clean lifestyle as it is, so the cleanse is more of a reset for me, an “easing in” for my body to the new season. Maintaining healthy weight and fitness is eighty percent nutrition, twenty percent physical activity. We can easily assist our physical bodies through change of seasons, changes such as moving, stresses that accompany change and the like through beneficial choices nutritionally.
But what about the mind? The spirit? I think is imperative to accompany either a physical cleanse or changes in life with a holistic “reset” cleanse/detox.
Stress is toxic. So if you’ve had a lot of stress recently (like I did with my big move) a gentle detox could prove very beneficial. But then what do we do to compliment this cleanse spiritually and mentally? My personal answer is yoga. I’m not referring to just asana. Yes, asana is a big part of it. But the practice in controlling the mind is the biggest part of it. Many of you also practice yoga, so you understand. But I was a bit surprised by the ensuing realizations that seemed to so deeply cleanse my spirit.
My nephew was born on the 17th. Spending the day with my close family this past Friday, meeting the newest addition to our clan, I was overcome (even more than usual) with the sensation of anticipation to someday move back to my home area.
I spent that night laying in bed visualizing my future. Manifesting, if you will. I know exactly the town I next intend to move, even though said move is about a year and a half away. I dozed off manifesting the life that I want to build there. I imagined a home with a bursting garden, tucked away in nature on the outskirts of this sweet town that I have always loved so much. I pictured myself freelance writing from home, teaching at a local yoga studio, walking my yellow lab. I visualized meeting someone someday who shares my same values, who lives the same kind of lifestyle that I do.
That part was particularly cleansing, as I experienced a fair amount of “letting go” of my past relationship when I moved, because I’d moved into that home and to the last town I lived in with high hopes of building a future with this person. I realize now that I spent an excessive amount of energy anxious over our differences, trying to make peace with the fact that I would have to make a lot of sacrifices to be happy with this person for life. Sacrifices of all sorts. It wasn’t that we weren’t deeply in love or good for one another, we were. It was that I did a lot of changing to fit into the relationship, while he did none. One person shouldn’t have to change for a relationship to continuing growing. In my little half asleep manifesting fantasy, I met a man who lived like I do. A man who, while different and his own person, fit with me. Who had complimentary priorities, values, lifestyle. I saw myself someday, years from now, having beautiful children; living close enough to my family for both my pregnancy and the births of my children to be closely supported by family and loved ones.
The visions were amazing. I firmly believe in manifesting our futures. My role model, Jennifer Pastiloff, leads manifestation retreats and workshops around the world. I’ve quoted the philosophies of The Secret since I was 16 years old. I’m not new to manifesting, to the power of visualization.
In yoga my teacher frequently talks about visualizing what we want the body to do, even when we are not physically moving. Visualization literally creates neural pathways in the brain! It’s no joke. So my fantasizing about the future really truly has the capacity to lead me down the path I hope to travel.
Having that little visualization seemed to offer me a really cleansing experience. I felt calm and centered afterwards, upon waking, and have been holding the image in the far corner of my mind. I feel very present and aware in this moment, while still fully dedicated to living out and manifesting that dream that I have in my future.
It’s unlike me to have a desire, a vision, that I want so deeply…and to feel patient about the whole scenario. I don’t feel rushed to get there. I feel like a year and a half is the perfect time to elapse before making such a transition. I know that a lot could change between now and then, but I feel strongly that the changes will all be beneficial. Positive growth leading me closer to my dream career, my deepest truth, my family. For one of the first times in a long time, I am overwhelmed with a sense of trust.
I trust that I will get there exactly when I am meant to and that, when I do, my quintessential life will unfold.
Regardless of how powerful my thoughts are and whether or not my visualization plays out as I want it to, I feel good. I feel trusting. I feel cleansed.
How powerful that the remedy for my anxious state came to me in such a state of half-sleep, inspired by a day bathed in familial love, and led me to wake with pristine clarity. Exactly the introspective cleansing I needed. Now my yoga practice and bodily seasonal cleanse can have the power to really reset my system, really improve my focus. Because I’ve cleaned out the gunk of confusion, of “what if,” of “what next?”
That question, “what next?” It holds us back. It trips us up. It confuses the heck out of us. Instead of just putting one foot in front of the other with awareness, we need the answer. What is next? Well, the truth is we never really know. We can plan all we want and plans change. So the idea is to get comfortable with change, I suppose, which takes constant practice. I think regular holistic cleansing is the key to staying comfortable with change, with the in betweens, with the unknown. Cleansing done by pranayama, meditation, yoga practice, journaling, time with family, spending time in nature, introspection, visualization…whatever resonates with you. Whatever stimulates deep clarity in you. I think it’s imperative especially if you’re going to participate in a dietary detox of any kind. I think it’s important to remain dedicated to ourselves holistically.
These little moments of clarity, these little “aha!” experiences…they are what enrich our human experience. They keep us hungering for human experience and seeking all things beautiful and divine out there in the world. They keep us aware. So visualize. Manifest. Dream up the life you want. It’s not silly, it’s not useless, it’s anything but. Harness the power of your own mind and create those neural pathways. Pave the road you wish to walk with the power of your thoughts, and let the beautiful gift of this human journey unfold before you.