Jenn’s Key to Resolutions

I go back and forth with the idea of new year resolutions. I think making goals to become a better you is an amazing thing to do any time of year or day of the week. I also understand that the beginning of another year is a great time to begin to make changes to your life. There is new hope that comes with a new year and that seems to be why people make promises and vows to do things differently. A few years ago I made two resolutions : read more books and do more yoga. Two very realistic goals for me. I love reading and felt that I stopped making time for it in my life. I resolved to change that and it worked. Yoga is something that I also loved. I started going to classes more and pretty soon it was a huge part of my (almost) daily routine. These were resolutions to do things that already had a place in my life and I just wanted to deepen that place. I also think that when we set out to accomplish things and for whatever reason or reasons, fall short of that goal, we can become discouraged and just give up entirely. If things don’t work out we may say: “I’ll try again next year”. When maybe we should say, “I’ll try again tomorrow. People always seem to joke about how attendance at the gym goes up for the first several weeks in January and then by February all the new people stop coming. This is good for regulars who want there Elliptical machine or space in a Zumba class back but, ultimately, it kinda stinks. As much as I personally prefer to have more space between me and the next yogi in a power yoga class ( the sweatier the class, the more personal space I seek), I would love it if every new person who came to yoga in the new year were still doing Asanas at the studio in September. So instead of thinking of resolutions or goals for the upcoming year, I decided that there is something I am going to strive to work on from this day forward. I may not always succeed but my intention is to make a true effort in getting there.

The thing that I strive to work on is limiting ( I am not going to be ridiculous and say eliminating) my negative self talk . I have a tendency to say self deprecating things aloud about myself when I feel insecure or even socially awkward. I am pretty shy by design and suffer from social anxiety.   I have made effort to work on this and it will always be a struggle for me. I accept this and am okay with it. What I am having a more difficult time with is the talk inside my head that pops up when I feel insecure or when I am having a hard time with a situation or scenario.   This negative self talk arises from limiting beliefs that I have cultivated about myself over time.   We all have limiting beliefs about ourselves that negatively impact our thought systems. They may have arisen from something that happened in our past and it shaped our future.   They can be a result of a past hurt or hurts or things people have said to us that we took to heart and decided that was the way it is. One of my limiting beliefs that keeps coming up recently is the idea that I don’t know what I am doing. Or I have now business doing … This is coming up constantly in my yoga teacher training. I pretty much spend part of every session talking smack to myself and saying “everyone else here knows what they are doing and you do not”.   I try not to say this stuff aloud to my fellow classmates but occasionally it will slip out in the form of a joke or a sarcastic comment. Yesterday we were doing arm balances and I was so discouraged by the fact that I still struggle in Bakasana (Crow pose) and people were demonstrating all sorts of unbelievable arm balances . I am pretty sure at one point the instructor levitated….but that may have been lack of sleep on my part. Does this mean I don’t deserve to be in the class? Of course not. Does it mean that I don’t know what I am doing? No way! Does this mean that I am not teacher material? It does not. But did it lead to me practically in tears by the end of that portion of the class? You bet it did! The funny part is that right before we started the arm balance portion we worked on teaching a sequence of poses that we have been working on. I was totally nervous but I went over and over it and had it down. I was so proud of myself. Instead of holding on to that accomplishment I focused on what I couldn’t do.

I know yoga has helped me realize these things about myself. There is always more to uncover. We are all works in progress. That’s the hope at least. I am grateful that I realize that negative self talk is detrimental to me. Someone once told me “ you know what to do you just are afraid to do it”. I think that can be applied to my teacher training experience. I know what to do I am just afraid to express that. I assume everyone knows more. That’s not necessarily true. And even if it is, that doesn’t mean that I know nothing. My goal in doing the teacher training was to deepen my practice and learn more about yoga and all that comes with the practice. I would love to be able to teach yoga classes. I would love to be able to take my love of yoga and spread it around to others.   I just have to believe that I can do that 🙂



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