Self-Preservation and the Power of Narrative | 3 Habits for Inner Peace
Hello lovers and friends of LIFE ON A MAT!
Not only has it been a moment since I’ve posted, I’ve fully enjoyed my time away. Several weeks have been spent processing, planning, and healing and it’s been a great summer so far, but a very busy one. After a long haul working on designing and updating my yoga class, I can finally rest and give love to my readers. I’ve had a lot of time to think about what I want and where I’m going, and it’s given me a great deal of focus and perspective. Each situation that I find myself in, I look at it as an opportunity. My attitude has shifted this year, being that I am closing in on 30 and I am learning how to live a more efficient life. I’m also focusing on diet and studying about the gut and the liver and how our bodies process stress. Our emotions can be just as toxic as the foods we put into our bodies. Our habits can be just as detrimental as the people we surround ourselves with. It has led me to a greater understanding that we must focus on WHAT we focus on. We must grasp the concept of how our brains learn and unlearn. We need to consider the process through which our deepest desires and goals become trapped within thought systems. Have you ever felt overwhelmed by all of the information out there? The bombardment of podcasts, videos, images, etc.? Not to say that resources are bad, but does it seem like there’s too much to wrap your mind around? On one end of the spectrum we live in a self help society and on the other end it’s doom and gloom with a news cycle going non stop. Why is it that inner peace seems so hard to achieve?
The reality is that we have all felt this way.
And why is that?
Why is it that we have all experienced this exhausting + overwhelming emotion?
The truth is that we don’t give ourselves enough time to ruminate and build resilience. We want an energy cap that lasts forever, we believe that we are running a marathon. But if we are to take a step back, we come to realize that there is no “real finish” line. Yes, there are goals to pursue and achieve, but if we are truly living in alignment, then we know that self-advancement is a way of life. It may seem that like all the people “running faster” than you will reach this collective destination with a big ribbon waiting for them. But as a yogi, I want to remind you of one thing: whether you walk or run, you must use your energy wisely.
This idea of a race is just a N A R R A T I V E.
Therefore, we must focus on WHAT we TELL ourselves. Are we pushing ourselves into ventures that do not truly feed our soul? Are we pursuing or dwelling on ideas that don’t make us feel our best self? I write this post to share some ways in which we can cut down on the noise in our lives so that we can truly listen to our inner needs and wishes. My hope is that you will find more solace for the rest of 2019 and mindset that will bring you “home” amidst the chaos. Using your energy selectively and strategically is the key to wellness.
stories on repeat:
your brain + body is listening
Oftentimes we start to see stories in our minds and we watch them play out in this imaginary world. Sometimes the stories are self-defeating, some are filled with doom and gloom, and some are just downright unhealthy. For instance, we might glamorize pushing ourselves to the brink to become a boss lady, or maybe we see ourselves alone forever, maybe we keep seeing our past failures over and over. Or we might even dare to envision some kind of happiness and then go back to telling ourselves that it’s unrealistic. And the reality is that your brain is watching you and listening to you. Your body hears your thoughts and dreams and internalizes them into your subconscious. Our mental health very much depends on the thoughts we feed ourselves. And these thoughts often become narratives. And you know exactly how the media can spin a story in whichever direction they so please. It works the same way and so I want you to begin thinking about WHAT you think about. Spend at least 5 minutes a day ruminating in positive thought. And don’t go erasing those thoughts, let them remain in your soul garden. Each day you re-visit your thoughts and water them.
reading + matching energy
I have once been that person who reacted to situations in the most unhealthy way. If a person upset me, I would let it consume my life. And ever since I’ve been on my own and in a relationship, one thing that my partner has taught me is to match energy. Matching energy is a very important skill. For me, it has been something that helps me professionally and personally. I don’t have to enter a room at a level 9 anymore. I can walk in at a 3 and read the room, and then adjust to that. I can also interact with someone who is at a 10 and respond at a 6 if I so choose. But the goal is to balance the temperature of the room, conversation, or situation. I used to be blind to my own energy levels. But it’s something I’ve had to work at and continue to work at. People pleasers and co-dependents, you feel me! Just increasing that awareness and reminding our brains each day that we can learn and unlearn is crucial. We have so much power over our lives, we forget to celebrate our best abilities.
bookmark your life
With all of the information that circulates, all of the self-help articles, open tabs with online shopping carts, and downloaded podcasts you swear you were going to listen to, it can be time-consuming af and downright overwhelming. The truth is, the market has become so saturated. But that’s okay! No shade to markets. I am market lol. But seriously, the worst thing we can do is overwhelm ourselves in it. So add that youtube video to your “watch later” list, close your un-used tabs, reduce the safari clutter and add your un-read articles to bookmarked lists. Come back to it when you feel you have the time! Then make time for just a few to take in each day. again, ruminating is important, it means to ponder. did you even have time to process the book you just read or are we on to the next? think about it. we are a culture of consumers and that’s fine. but realize that we have a whole lifetime to learn and grow and we don’t need to be updated on every latest hack or trend or diet. If you possess this attitude of rationing your information consumption, then the most important nuggets of wisdom will always come to you naturally. there are so many hours in the day, so preserve your energy through a balanced “consumption diet”!
Before I close, I want to give a huge thank you to @thesetting_ and @thelumenroom for having me last month! We had a beautiful yoga class rooted in uplifting thought and intention-setting! Be on the lookout for new events! I’m working and whittling away at some ideas for the Fall so stay tuned! If you would like to book me for your next event, just get in touch with me on my contact page.