Staying with WHAT IS – Day 7

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Off balance

Yesterday I couldn’t get out of bed and today I couldn’t stay in long enough. At bedtime I already worried about getting as much sleep as I could for my busy day ahead. This is one of my worry patterns to be tired and not having enough energy to sustain me. Of course then I spent the whole night tossing and turning and counting the hours of sleep I had left. At 2:45am I gave up and started with on of the things I had to get done.

I am re-reading what I have just written and ask myself:

  • What is my learning in this?
  • What is this telling me?

Well, for one there is an underlying fear probably linked to perfectionism of having to function 100% all the time, which is of course impossible.

Secondly, there is something around control. If I just make the right plan and prepare everything accordingly things will work out the way I want them to.

But guess what:

They might NOT after all. And with that I am reminded of my core leanings. “Surrender more, trying to control less!”

What I am grateful for today:

  • The quietness of the early morning and how that instils clarity within myself.
  • Being able to share this post.
  • Getting everything done I had on my chore list for today.

Staying with WHAT IS – Day 6

Ever felt you couldn’t leave your bed in the morning?

This morning I didn’t feel like getting up. I felt tired and heavy and sorry for myself. And found it very difficult to come up with things I am grateful for. Obviously I had neglected a YOUNG PART of mine that now demanded attention.

So I asked myself:

  • Where have I let myself down?


  • How can I provide better care for myself?

I am just putting these questions out-there, knowing that I need to give them time and space to find answers to them.

What I am grateful for today:

  • That I did manage to get out of bed eventually.
  • That I was able to write this post.
  • My morning practice.
  • Looking out the window and seeing the sun put a smile on my face.

Staying with WHAT IS – Day 5

What is your BODY CLOCK telling you?

I woke up this night at 3:30 am and couldn’t go back to sleep. There can be different reasons for sleep disturbances and I know that my tendency to worry and obsesses accounts for a lot but it is also useful to consider the ORGAN MERIDIANS  which the Chinese Medicine terms the “web of life” (Gach, Michael Reed, with Carolyn Marco. The Organ Meridians. In Gach, Michael Reed, with Carolyn Marco. Acu-Yoga: Self-Help Techniques to Relieve Tension. New York: Japan Publications, Inc., 1998, pp. 99-119.)

According to the Chinese Body Clock each organ is linked to specific hours of the day when it is most active. On the other hand, the organ at the opposite side of the clock, 12 hours away, is at its lowest energy.

So given that I woke up between 3:00am and 5:00am, I know that this is the time where the Lung Meridian is most active. The Lung Meridian controls the voice, respiratory system, the sweat, skin health and immune system health and is linked to grief and detachment. So it is very normal to feel a bit blue when waking at this time. However, if this becomes a regular occurrence then it might be worthwhile to explore the underlying issues like for example unresolved grief.

What I am grateful for today:

  • My organic soy chai latte, so warming
  • That the sun is shining
  • Meeting a dear friend soon
  • For this very practical yoga therapy book: “Acu-Yoga: Self-Help Techniques to Relieve Tension”

Staying with WHAT IS – Day 4

I noticed how I was resisting going to the mat today. I thought it’s Sunday, I don’t really feel like it I should have a day off.

A day off from what? Being with myself and being with WHAT IS?

Exactly that is the practice! Which takes discipline. I know discipline might have a bad connotation but think about it as self-respect.

“Do I respect myself enough to just spend 10-15 minutes each morning attending to SELF?”

And that means going to the mat, NO MATTER WHAT!

It doesn’t mean a rigorous workout. No. Just spending those 15 minutes to be with whatever comes up. And if its FEAR, ANGER, SADNESS, FRUSTRATION, or RESISTANCE, that is OK.

That’s why I took myself to the mat despite my reluctance. I was aware of a tendency to rush my asanas just to get it over and done with. So I slowed it right down, holding the poses a bit longer and really staying with my breath. I noticed how my balance was off, probably due to my underlying impatience to get on to other things so just wanting to finish as quickly as possible.

Despite all this reluctance to practise I did enjoy my sitting meditation and breathwork at the end and also the feeling of groundedness after. So am I glad I did it? Definitely! THANK YOU!

What I am grateful for today:

  • For my practise today
  • Having had a good night’s sleep
  • My hard to shake cold finally eases off
  • Less anxiety and tension in my body today
  • For the time and space to engage in the process of being with WHAT IS

Staying with WHAT IS – Day 3

I Didn’t sleep well last night. Tossed and turned, my mind was racing my chest felt really tight. It is scary not having clear directions, visions and set goals that can be put into action. But that is were I am at. Kind of a free falling with no safety net.

So where to from here?

I have tried exploring different paths, making lists of positives and negatives, accompanied by frantic research. I don’t want to do that anymore as it it just leaves me obsessing more. I want to learn to surrender to what is, sit with the discomfort and my fear of NOT KNOWING.

What I did last night when I knew I wouldn’t be able to sleep any time soon, I went to my mat. I just sat and did a few breathing exercises till I felt calmer.

Was my anxiety gone this morning? Not completely. But it feels more bearable. I still notice a faint flutter in my chest but that’s not all of who I am.

I still did my Yoga practice this morning. A very slow one with long breaths to further calm my nervous system. I did write my post and I am looking forward to my bike ride this afternoon. THANK YOU!

What I am grateful for today:

  • The tools (like breathwork) I have
  • Going to my mat at night and this morning
  • The spiced apple and chai for breakfast

Staying with WHAT IS – Day 2

I am very content after my long bike ride and walk this afternoon. There is a sense of happiness, lightness and openness in my body. Really grateful that I was able to leave my warm, cozy home which often seems like a cocoon, despite the cold and the rain. Just exercising my body like that makes we feel alive and more grounded.

So this is one of the things I know to be true. It almost always makes me feel better to go outside be it for a walk, a bike ride or just a short stretch and taking in some big deep breaths of fresh air. THANK YOU!

What I am grateful for today:

  • Having slept well
  • The creamy avocado for breakfast
  • My bicycle

Staying with WHAT IS – Day 1

Back from my yoga training in Bali and feeling my way into being home again. It’s cold and I miss the the sunshine and my daily yoga and meditation schedule as well as being around like-minded yogis. I notice my resistance to just “being with what is”. I detect a pattern that is geared towards procrastination. I spend a lot of time in front of the computer doing “so called research” and being on facebook so I don’t have to face my feelings of dread and not knowing. Part of my going away was the hope that I would return with more clarity:

  • Do I want to become a yoga-teacher?
  • do I want to work as a counsellor?
  • Shall I present workshops?
  • What are my next steps going to be?

And the honest answer is: I STILL DON’T KNOW! –  So I will start with baby steps and staying with what I know.

  • I know that YOGA is good for me, so I have started a home practice. A very short sequence of slow sun salutations, followed by a few minutes of seated meditation. That’s all I can commit to right now.
  • The other thing I want to do inspired by Nicole Cody’s gratitude blog:  is to write each day at least 3 things I am grateful for.

As I am writing this I hear my inner critic going: “That’s all, that’s nothing. Look at other people they are doing so much more and have a family as well and a full-time job!” Well, indeed that’s other people, but I have to stay with what is true for me. This is very new to me. I am used to “if I just work harder, I can get there”, wherever “THERE” is. But what I really have to learn is “letting go” and surrendering to what is.

“The next time you lose heart and you can’t bear to experience what you are feeling, you might recall this instruction: change the way you see it and lean in. That’s basically the instruction that Dzigar Kongtrul gave me. And now I pass it on to you. Instead of blaming our discomfort on outer circumstances or on our own weakness, we can choose to stay present and awake to our experience, not rejecting it, not grasping it, not buying the stories that we relentlessly tell ourselves. This is priceless advice that addresses the true cause of suffering- yours, mine and that of all living beings.” (Taking The Leap, Pema Chodron)

What I am grateful for today: 

  • My yoga and meditation practice in the morning
  • My body’s ableness
  • That I have started this blog
  • My brekkie of home-made bircher muesli with raspberries and almonds