Limitless (Un)Defined

I’m in the process of moving my blog to http://confessionsofayogaprincess.wordpress.com/

Until the process is complete, end of summer 2014, I’ll be posting duplicate entries in both blogs.

I am limitless. You are limitless. I spend a lot of time thinking about limitlessness and what it means to be limitless.

I often push my limits physically and am surprised by the results. This past Wednesday I challenged myself in a new way. I went to a spinning class before my usual double Bikram session. I’ve done spinning before at my local 24 Hour Fitness, but I’d never been to a place that specializes in spinning (Soul Cycle).

From the get go I knew this experience would be different. My yoga instructor speaks quite highly of the spinning instructor, MB, so I rightly figured the workout would be challenging, and I’ve never been one to shy away from a challenge.

I’m kind of all over the place with this blog entry, but here’s the deal: I sweated from pores I didn’t know I had in that class. The pores on my scalp and forehead cried tears of sweat into my eyes. Parts of my nether regions spoke to me in ways I’d never heard before. My mind and emotions raged out of control, bringing up depths of “stuff” I’d rather not have felt, but I didn’t stop moving my legs—not once did I stop.

I made every effort to keep up with the movements. I had trouble pulsing my torso as my legs spun round and round but I made the best effort I could. Imagine doing wall push-ups while furiously cycling and you’ll have an inkling of my experience. When it came time to bring out the weights I could have feigned exhaustion and not reached for them, but I didn’t. I grabbed my weights and kept up as best I could.

By the time the class ended my body dripped with sweat. I felt a certain numbing bliss. I also felt strange uncomfortable emotions brewing. On her bio MB says “exercise is therapy” and she’s right. Loren’s also said many times “yoga heals” and he’s right too. Our bodies, my body teaches me so much about the type of person I want to be, the type of person my soul longs to be.

But I’m not at the part about limitlessness yet. After the spin class I went and nourished my body with some juice before my double Bikram classes. When the day began I didn’t know how I’d make it through a spin class and two Bikram classes, but I’m also the woman who once did four Bikram classes in one day.

I surprised myself that night by the lessons the physical exertion taught me. As I neared the end of the first Bikram class I gave up on the final twisting pose and Loren asked me if the problem was in the body or the head, and I told him the truth (‘cause I can’t, and wouldn’t  lie to him)—my head, so he said get up and do the pose. And I did.

That moment, along with the second Bikram class that night taught me some valuable lessons about limitlessness, my limitlessness. When I decided to sit out that pose, my mind wanted to limit me. My mind said, “you’re too sweaty, too slippery, too tired for that pose. That pose doesn’t matter. Just rest.” My body had the ability to work, to attempt the pose.

I realized in that moment that my mind really works diligently at limiting my actions, in the sweat room and outside the sweat room. Sure, there are times when I need to sit out a pose, but I know when I do that I really need to check in with myself and see if it’s my mind or my body.

The same holds true outside the room. I spend too much time thinking, overthinking and that’s my mind limiting my joy. How can I be joyful if I’m not in the moment? I know me well enough to know that if I’m thinking I’m not in the moment.

I experienced so many profound realizations about myself on Wednesday. I can do anything if I push my mind out of the way. That includes the art of just being. I need to make a greater effort just to be.

I owe so much of my recent transformations to time I spend in the hot room, and so many of those transformations can’t be seen, for they aren’t physical. I used to have the hardest time just speaking my mind about the simplest of things and now when some situation doesn’t feel right to me my body and soul speak to me and give the courage to speak my mind. I hold my self back much less than I used to. I express my self more, even when it’s difficult. I’m learning I can do absolutely anything.

It may not always be easy, but these days it’s always better because I’m learning the art of being me, of being with me and of being okay with me, and that’s something I can’t put a price tag on.

I’m limitless. So are you. To believe otherwise is to let the madness of the ego-mind win. I’m not going to let my mind win anymore. Don’t let yours win either!

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https://www.facebook.com/ConfessionsofaYogaPrincess

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The Day I Finally Knew

So much of my life has changed this past year, so much of my life has changed during these past five years, and in some ways I’m tired of changing. I’m exhausted with all the effort it takes, yet, yet, I sit here plotting more change!  Why? Because I want more out of this life. I KNOW I am so much more than my mind would have me believe. My heart, my spirit tells me this clearly and definitively.

As I sit here this morning, New Year’s Eve 2013, I’m creating and planning more definitive and, dare I say, drastic transformations in my life. I’ve watched myself and my emotional eating behaviors over these past few months. I’ve engaged in more comfort eating than I’d care to admit. I’ve observed the fast food cravings that would hit me with a force that would make 80mph gale force winds seem like romantic caresses from Mother Nature. I resisted them sometimes but not all the time.

On more than one occasion, a small or medium French fry from McDonald’s filled my heart with love the way nothing else could. It’s been months since I had one, but I can soooo easily recall the soothing embrace of a chocolate dipped cone, also from McDonald’s. The reasons, the moments, the incidents that brought forth these seemingly necessary culinary medicinals—I can recollect in detail, but this post isn’t about that.

This post is about my continuing metamorphosis, my lightning fast transformation into a healthier individual, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

Riding that spin cycle on Sunday instilled in me the desire to take the next step forward in my journey. To take another, a deeper look at my food. I know the triggers. I know the situations. I know. I know when, where, why I’ll want to eat food that doesn’t work in tandem with my goal. But I needed to get to  a place of greater emotional strength before I tackled this part of my food journey.

Thankfully, I’ve reached that pinnacle, that fork in the road. For the next three days I will be doing some serious work with food. I’ll be going to stores: Whole Foods, Sprouts and a couple of regular stores. I’ll be buying AND exploring. Looking for healthy foods and snacks I’ll enjoy eating because if I don’t enjoy the taste there’s really no point.  For dietary changes to be permanent I have to enjoy what I’m eating—I am, after all, a FOOD ADDICT. 

Any foods I buy will need to be separated into serving sizes.  Seriously folks, who amongst you can eat just one serving out of a potato chip bag or a bag of nuts? This way I’ll be able to just grab a snack to keep with me and if I DO happen to eat it out of emotion, I’ll know what I’ve eaten, and it’s the KNOWING, really KNOWING that is more than half the battle with me.

But it’s not just the food, I have to create a clean nurturing space in my apartment where I can just be. I have spaces where I meditate, but I’ve fallen off the wagon of keeping my spaces as clear as I’d like, and this is so important because so often these past few months I’ve found myself feeling overwhelmed, feeling as though I have no time, feeling like I can’t breathe.

And shoes. This girl needs shoes for her new cycling habit (do you see how I’ve already decided it’s going to be a habit!:)

This is my task then for the next three days. This is what I’ll be doing. This is what I’ll be focusing on. Food. Clearing Space. New shoes.

I’ll be skipping yoga on Wednesday. I’m not going out on New Year’s Eve. I’ll be getting some exercise, but it’ll be interspersed with the work I’ve set out to do. These changes aren’t about having New Year’s resolutions. These changes are about me deciding I’m worth working on. And that’s something I can be excited about………………………………….

I’ll be detailing some of my journey on facebook, so please feel free to be a part of my journey, if you’d like: https://www.facebook.com/ConfessionsofaHawaiianPrincess?ref=hl

Now, if you’ll excuse me I have some shopping and cleaning to do!!!

Here’s a poem that inspires me to keep working on me!  

The Journey by Mary Oliver (with thanks to Joey for posting this recently and reminding me of its power!)

One day you finally knew 
what you had to do, and began, 
though the voices around you 
kept shouting 
their bad advice—
though the whole house 
began to tremble 
and you felt the old tug 
at your ankles. 
“Mend my life!” 
each voice cried. 
But you didn’t stop. 
You knew what you had to do, 
though the wind pried 
with its stiff fingers 
at the very foundations, 
though their melancholy 
was terrible. 
It was already late 
enough, and a wild night, 
and the road full of fallen 
branches and stones. 
But little by little, 
as you left their voices behind, 
the stars began to burn 
through the sheets of clouds, 
and there was a new voice 
which you slowly 
recognized as your own, 
that kept you company 
as you strode deeper and deeper 
into the world 
determined to do 
the only thing you could do—
determined to save
the only life you could save.

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