A New Journey Begins.
It’s one week into the New Year. Resolutions and positive intentions are still rich in the air like testosterone in the weights room. Motivated by those extra pounds gained over the festive period or the quest for the ‘new and better you’, gym memberships swell, healthy eating cook books fly off the shelves (at Amazon), and all manner of ‘grab the year by the short and curlies and show it who’s boss’ strategies are being enacted. Inspired by guilt or hope, our socially conditioned mantras to make a new start on ourselves have kicked in. Either way, somebody had better watch out. That somebody might just be YOUR body.
The quick fix revolution, an integral part of consumerism, will spur many of us to make sudden, radical shifts in our behaviour: what we aspire to, what we eat, how we move; a rapid burst of enthusiasm for this shiny brand New Year situated in the depths of Nature’s winter slumber.
I’ve seen a many Facebook posts this past week from those who mean business. The defiant, “I’m not taking any more crap from anyone.” The aggressive “2016 is my bitch and nothing is going to stand in my way.” The optimistic “this will be the greatest year ever.” I’ve been there before too, and if it feels right then go for it. But should we all respond to our new yearly beginning in such a pumped up way?
Last year, I had some weight to lose, some business and personal goals I wanted. And come the 1st of January I was ready and straight on it. I was focused, committed, productive and I quickly gained momentum. And this wasn’t a flash in the January pan. It carried me through the whole of 2015. I did what I set out to do.
This year? It feels very different. I feel none of the January jumpstart jolliness. But that nagging inner-voice is telling me that I must get going, to stop stalling, and that I’m falling behind already. So what’s wrong with me!?
This year, my energy is in a different place. That inner-nag is screaming at me to launch into a whole new raft of ‘personal improvement’ projects. But I can’t. Won’t. Shouldn’t.
I’m still absorbing and integrating my experiences of 2015: the insights and learning that were the fruits of following through on my intentions last year. Those fruits need to be fully digested before I refill my plate once more. To force yet more changes and challenges upon myself would undermine last year’s gains, lead to stressful overload and ultimately a loss of commitment. At this time of year, because we feel we ‘should’ we can punish ourselves physically, mentally and emotionally in a warped desire make changes. But there is no starting pistol fired on January 1st that impels us fly out of the blocks.
Last year I soared high. It was a magnificent journey of learning and accomplishment. I’m still making my gradual descent from that. Thus I feel it’s unwise to start to aim higher, lest I incur the Icarus factor. Hence, my natural energetic rhythm this year is very different. I am still full from before. So take off this year is going to need a longer runway.
So don’t be alarmed if you haven’t leapt into action just yet. Everything is fine. Allow yourself space. Pay attention to where your energy is at right now. If you are exploding with motivation, great! Move with the rhythm of that energy. If you don’t feel full of New Year promise, then stop for a moment and tune in to your deeper rhythms. It is important that you listen to that and not force yourself to jump onto the ‘New Year New You’ charabanc just yet. If like me, your rhythm is gentle, more pensive, and slower to respond then honour that with all your heart. Don’t be defiant, aggressive in your approach to the year ahead. Don’t push yourself until you feel the impulse to surge forward.
We are soft, gentle, beautiful creatures and the rhythm of life flows deep within us. Take a moment. Become quiet. Tune in. Find the rhythm of your breath. Feel the subtle pulse and throb of your inner-energy, the rhythm of who you are right now. We do not have to superimpose what we think we should be doing over our intuitive guide.
Often, it is more fruitful to allow your natural human energy, your inner-rhythm to express just the way it is. Let the deeper current of the New Year You gently carry you out a little way before you start rowing towards the horizon. The currents of our lives are not found in calendars.
Find your inner rhythm: http://transcendenceyoga.co.uk/meditation
“It was but yesterday I thought myself a fragment quivering without rhythm in the sphere of life. Now I know that I am the sphere, and all life in rhythmic fragments moves within me.”