I went camping for two days with one of my design clients in the middle of the week (’cause I can – being a location independent entrepreneur and all). Some may find that strange, but rest assured my client relations are all fairly abnormal. At any rate, we spent a lot of time talking about who we are, what we want in life and basically…how we roll. I have been realizing more and more that I am slightly..ummm…eccentric and this conversation really helped solidify for me that I am kind of an odd duck. I have no desire to be like anyone else. NO desire. This has become apparent to me even more so recently, than ever before, when I decided to take a break from teaching yoga for awhile. My path of being a yoga teacher, as it has been, was the last bit of me trying to be like others which simply did not mesh with who I actually was. I am not a golden light of health and earthly transcendence. I like the earth. I like the struggle. I like the raw and the brash and the wild. The irreverent and the novel.
I practice yoga to keep from being in pain on a daily basis, to push the boundaries of my body and mind and to become more aware of the ways in which I limit myself. I sit in meditation for the sole purpose of watching thoughts arise so I can create space from them in order to choose how I think instead of being on the auto pilot program prescribed by my past, society, media, people around me, etc.
I do these things so I can be more me. Not to be more graceful. Not to be softer. Not to be kinder. Not even to be healthier.
Frankly I would rather sit around at any given moment and drink coffee or beer, smoke a cigarette and talk to another human being about our experiences on this planet while throwing out a few f-bombs every once and awhile (often).
And that is a-o-k with me.
For a long time I used to think that the Buddhist concept of releasing the illusion of duality meant that I had to change myself in such a way that my actions were all more in line with each other. That if I was going to be a yoga teacher, I had to stop eating meat, be a size 2, and speak the half-truth of positivity at all times, and if I couldn’t do those things and fit myself into the idea of the mold that I had in mind, then I was somehow less-than and lacking. What a messed up ego trip! By the way, life is not all positive. It is yin and yang baby – all the time.
Now, I realize that releasing the illusion of duality means just that – releasing the illusion of duality.
I am embracing myself with a giant hug and a pinch on the butt.
All the things that I do and say and think and feel ARE me. I am one, whole, fucking human being.
So for now I am giving up the idea of “bettering” myself. I am just going to do what I do – work, play, travel, practice yoga and meditation, swear , smoke, drink, laugh, talk, dance, sing, write, eat this bacon and egg breakfast burrito sitting here next to me (yum!) and explore what it means to rest in my wholeness, imperfections and all. Who knows where being comfortable with myself at this moment might lead to.
My life is awesome and I live it on my terms. I enjoy my own company and no one seems to think I am an asshole (that I know of…or care about).
What greater success is there? I am not talking about saving the world here.
How would you feel and what would your life look like if you stopped trying to be something that you’re not?
P.S. Here are some pictures from my super awesome, mid-week, trip to the Carrizo Plain National Monument … I give it 5 stars for SPACIOUSNESS.
Funny enough, it just so happens that I stopped at the James Dean memorial site on the way to the Carrizo Plain.
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