Have you ever found yourself spinning out of control and stressing out on your projects? If you anything like me, a type A personality, then you probably know what I’m talking about. In fact, I found myself doing just that recently.
Earlier last year, I embarked on a journey to expand my yoga accreditation and enrolled in Kundalini yoga teacher training. For me, Kundalini yoga is totally amazing and I LOVE the way it makes me feel. It’s quite different from traditional hatha or vinyasa yoga which I’ve been teaching since around 2007. Kundalini is known as yoga of awareness. It’s actually a science. It uses a mixture of movement, breath work, mantra and meditation to calm the body and elevate the spirit. The benefits are remarkable! After a class, you leave feeling incredibly revived and connected to the inner guidance within your heart and to the higher universal energies. Honestly, its magical!
Well… that’s the way I felt about it up until I signed up for the training. Now let me start by saying, my teachers are great. The best in the world! I have so much respect for them. The practicum is fabulous. But as per my usual type A personality, I started to stress out about it… all the reading, the final test, 12 hour days in class. My mind went into overload and I thought, oh God, can I really absorb all of this.
Why Do We Put So Much Pressure On Ourselves?
You see, right out of the gate, I started to worry about the end result. Nine months of work if ya look at it all at once is of course overwhelming. And the final test, YIKES. Why was I worrying about that now? So much unnecessary pressure! I was taking all the fun out of what I came to do… to learn more about this beautiful practice so that I can grow in my spirituality and in turn help others to grow. But here I was, getting all freaked out.
Does any of this resonate with you? Have you ever found yourself in a similar situation?
As I explained this to a dear friend who is also a Kundalini yoga teacher, she looked at me quizzically and said, “Why in the world would you get so caught up on the tests? You said yourself you love kundalini yoga. You’ll learn more by living it, going to the classes, submerging yourself in the lifestyle… and then it will come to you naturally and organically.”
She proceeded to tell me a poignant story about her college days. That she did all kinds of things that were good for the resume. Becoming student president, joining clubs, doing all sorts of extra curricular activities. But she didn’t do all of these things because she felt she had to for her resume, rather she did this because she was enjoying all of them.
Conversely a friend of hers had done all the same, but attached a ton of stress to it. You see, this person was doing it because she felt she had to do it. She overloaded herself not only with the workload, but with non-productive anxiety and pressure. Unfortunately for this girl, she crashed and
and actually dropped out of school.
Which brings me to a simple realization, we don’t have to fight through life. Do the things you love, because you love it. And let your grip release from the end results. You’ll be much more apt to enjoy the process. Stress out and put undue pressure on yourself, and you may very well crash and burn and perhaps lose the entire benefit or love for what you started out doing to begin with. And what a shame that would be!
My mantra for today is “Let go and do what you love for the love of it. Period, end of story. Attach nothing to it and let it all unfold beautifully.”
And do help you smoothly sail along your journey, here are three of my top three tips to Keep Calm…
1. STOP OVER ANALYZING AND START DOING. Yogi Bhajan would say, “When the time is on you, start and the pressure will be off.” Just by consciously engaging in the relationship of your project puts you in the game. Work on it, put your energy into it. The act of starting and taking steps everyday will get you closer to the finish line.
2. CHOOSE REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS OF WHAT YOU CAN HUMANLY GET DONE. Break it down. In my case, the training is broken down into 9 months. That’s a lot of time to get all that work and study done. In that 9 months, we break it down to weekly, and then monthly goals. So get out a pen and start to dissect your project into digestible, realistic chunks.
3. REWARD YOURSELF. What happens to a car if you drive it non stop? You will run out of gas of course. Set rewards for the work you have done. Once you’ve finished a chunk of the work, give yourself a gift. Maybe a walk to the park, have dinner with a friend, take a yoga class. And repeat this Love Mantra, repeat it until you believe it. ” have done great work. Congratulations. (insert your name here).
I hope you can translate this into your own life and KEEP CALM and do it for the LOVE.
If this story resonates with you, you think it could benefit someone else, feel free to share. After all sharing is caring and it just may help someone you know.
burned, got sick