February 13, 2018

12 Things to give up, to find peace.

Yoga practice is about finding peace. In yoga, all our practices, such as our physical practice, meditation and mindful breathing, ask that we be mindful. When we are mindful of what we are doing in the present moment, instead of being caught up in negative self-talk, criticizing others or being caught-up in our fears, we are not feeding the irritations that erode our peace. Doing regular yoga practices in a mindful way will loosen the hold of the obstacles to finding peace. Affecting not only our inner peace but also our mental and physical health. 

It is helpful to identify the obstacles so we can have more awareness of how they are affecting us.

1. Let go of the need to always be right.
Just let go of this! It makes my blood pressure go up just thinking about it!

2. Let go of your need to control.
Put your best effort forward then let go. Let God/Universe/Spirit take over. You can’t control outcomes. You can’t control people.

3. Let go of blaming others.
Blaming doesn’t do anyone any good. Yourself included.

4. Let go of negative or self-defeating self-talk.
Instead, repeat positive affirmations to yourself throughout the day…it works! Really!

5. Let go of complaining.
Look for the best in a situation, or person, not the negative. Think and talk in a positive way.

6. Let go of criticism.
Work on improving yourself instead.

7. Let go of your need to impress others.
Relax, and be confident and comfortable with who you are.

8. Let go of resistance to change.
Go with the flow! I have a favourite saying “It is only as hard as I want to make it”. (Referring to the challenge, the situation or the job at hand)

9. Let go of fears.
Fear is paralyzing. “They” say that 85% of what we worry about never happens! Use your spiritual practice to help you overcome your fears. Have faith that everything will be alright and that you are strong enough to face your fears. How would you feel right now if you didn’t have that fear? (fine! great!) ….go with that feeling.

10. Let go your past.
Learn from the past but wholeheartedly get on with your future.

11. Let go of attachments.
Attachment to outcomes, people, places and things, creates pain when they are no longer part of your life….at least loosen your grip!

12. Let go of living up to other peoples expectations.
Instead, have a clear vision of what you want for you and your future.

The above obstacles to peace are all “in your mind”. Yoga teaches us that we have control over our mind. In fact, yoga is a “bag of tools” or “methods” (asana, pranayama, meditation) to calm the mind.
Yoga helps us to be in a clear, calm place, enabling us to see how we get caught in these peace disturbing activities of the mind. These disturbing activities will naturally soften and dissolve, to a degree, with the yoga practice but, it takes resolve (a conscious decision) and commitment to be totally free of them.

Inner peace is our responsibility. It takes constant work.
Guess where I am heading….
Find peace at one of my retreats on beautiful Salt Spring Island (my home for over 30 years).