I had a dream the other night. I was sitting beside a good friend of mine and we were chatting about life. I looked down to my left hand and I noticed I was holding a heart in it. I looked at the heart and I looked at my friend and I put the heart, my heart into my pocket. When I woke up I reflected on the dream and wondered what it was telling me. Over the following days I was taking part in my Forrest Yoga Mentorship Programme and as the weekend progressed I kept having flashbacks of the dream. One of my fellow teachers text me on one of the evenings and asked me how it was going and during our messaging he asked why I was hiding. In hindsight, I didn't really understand the question. I'm living my life sharing my passion with my communities and I love that I get to do this. I feel I am truthful and authentic about what is right for me and what doesn't feel so good. I love that I have freedom to travel, to teach and to share yoga and healing with people every day. It doesn't look like I've been in hiding. On day three of the weekend the switch flicked on, a lightbulb lit up and I realised I have been hiding parts of me. Why? Because I believed I am not enough.
I am not enough.
As I said it in the group I realised it's reflected in all parts of my life and it's been there for a longtime, so long that I don't remember when I started believing it. When I was working in corporate world and I wanted a promotion at work, if I was told I wasn't ready I'd leave the job for another one, getting the promotion that way. I had zero patience for waiting until someone else told me I was ready. Relationships have ended with my wanting more or interpreting interactions in a way that isn't how the other person saw things and I've made it mean I am not enough. Financially, I get myself out of debt only to go straight back into it believing that if I do more courses, take more trainings I will be enough. It's a pattern and a big one for me.
As I sat with it I saw that the belief had already started to come to light and shift before I had my lightbulb moment. I got an opportunity in March to lead yoga teacher training as the lead instructor. I hadn't asked for it. It was offered and I watched myself as I went into questions of am I enough and do I know enough. It took a some time to sit with it and to realise I wanted to step up and lead, to believe in myself and in the knowledge and wisdom that my teachers have shared with me is enough for now for my students. I've seen people I haven't seen for years over recent weeks and I haven't felt the need to grasp and hold on tightly to the interaction. I'm not making it be something more and chasing them to go for tea or catch up. I simply acknowledge it and move along. If it happens naturally then that's great. I'm flowing and its allowing me to be in the flow rather than controlling the flow.
I am always on another course, taking another training, looking for the next thing I can do so I can be enough. No matter how many courses, trainings, classes I do it's never enough. I am a hamster on a wheel racing around in circles believing that when I do this course, then I'll be enough; If I do that assisting then it'll be enough, I'll be enough. It never translates to my feeling and being enough. It's patterns, conditioning and societal reflections - if we lose weight, tone up, get the promotion, buy the house, travel to that next special place, do the next course, find that one person, have a baby etc etc etc then life will be enough, we will be enough.
Since my travels to India and Nepal I have been given a gift. The gift of standing still and staying in one place. There have been courses I've wanted to sign up to and the dates haven't worked. There have been things I've wanted to be a part of and it just isn't flowing. Financially I am working on clearing the loans I used to complete trainings and by focusing on this I am being asked to be present and to forecast and forward plan for my business and my life. I'm being asked to sow seeds, take care of them, water them, give them love and kindness and wait patiently for my roots to grow and deepen so that there are strong foundations for the next step. What that step is I don't know and I'm okay with that.
And so this week I sat with my friend in the park and I took my heart out of my pocket and I shared with him. It felt vulnerable but so good to come out of hiding parts of myself, to be honest about my dream and to share my commitments and travel stories in all their beauty, because I am enough.
"The feeling that 'I am enough' does not mean that I have nothing to learn, nothing further to achieve, and nowhere to grow to. It means that I accept myself, that I am not on trial in my own eyes, that I value and respect myself. This is not an act of indulgence but of courage."
I am enough. You are enough. We are enough.
"I am enough. I am full of sparkle and of compassion. I genuinely want to make the world a better place. I love hard. I practice kindness. I am not afraid of the truth. I am loyal, adventurous, supporting and surprising. I am enough. I make mistakes but I own them and I learn from them. And sometimes I make a lot of mistakes. But I am enough."
There is nothing more to do, nowhere else to go, you are exactly where you need to be and in the exact place that is perfect for you. If it doesn't bring you joy and contentment you are the one person that can change it.
Go out today and let go of control, makes some mistakes, get messy, sparkle and shine and recognise in all of it we are enough, you are enough, I am enough.
Last night I went to see Marianne Williamson speak. I have followed her online for a number of years and while I haven’t done the Course in Miracles, I have read Return to Love. It was one of the first books that I was introduced to by my yoga teacher in Sydney over ten years ago.
And the night couldn’t have come at a better time. Over recent weeks I have found myself feeling fragmented. My energy has been pulled in all directions and instead of having one clear focus I have been racing from class to class, from one idea to the next with little clarity, from workshop to retreat without conscious choice as to why I am doing what I am doing. It became apparent on my Easter retreat, when after a wonderful weekend with an amazing group of people, I felt exhausted. At first I couldn’t understand why, I had taught two retreats over the New Year and not felt this way so why this retreat and why now?
I had stepped out of the practices my teacher in India had gifted me. I wasn’t meditating. I wasn’t saying my mantra as I had committed to. I wasn’t taking the time to do my own yoga practice. I wasn’t refueling my spirit each day. I allowed the little things that normally wash over me to overwhelm me and instead of taking a step back I kept pushing through.
“IT STOPS NOW”
Three little words that Marianne said with utter conviction to the group last night. I believed her. I wanted to stand up in the room and say, “I am with you. IT STOPS NOW.” She meant what she said and it hit me right at my heart and connected to my spirit. IT STOPS NOW. To listen to her words last night it struck me that she lives and breathes her work. It’s in her body, it’s in her energy, it’s in how she listens, and it’s in the words she speaks. She is 100% committed and convicted to her path and her message in this world. She embodies her work. And, wow, what a powerful place to be.
And she does it with boundaries. She gently moves people along as they get a little lost in their sharing. She challenges people compassionately. She listens and knows when to respond. She takes her time. Nothing is a rush. She speaks with fluency and intent. And it’s part of those three words. IT STOPS NOW.
Boundaries have been on my mind since seeing Brené Brown’s recent interview with The Work of the People. In the piece she states; “Generosity cannot exist without boundaries… Nothing is sustainable without boundaries… We care more about what people think, we want people to like us and so creating boundaries doesn’t sit well with us.”
Boundaries are defined as: “a line which marks the limits of an area; a dividing line.”
For us personally it’s about how we define our limits. What is our dividing line? It’s also important to recognize when we set boundaries we are not creating separation. We are simply saying this is what is okay for me and this is what is not.
In our culture of blame, the need to be right, the need to be liked and to please, setting boundaries is challenging. It can bring up fear and I understand that. I feel fear when I create a boundary or draw that dividing line. The questions; Will this person still like me? Will I offend them? Am I jeopardizing my work with them by being clear about my limits? These questions are real fears for me. However I also recognize that I need boundaries to be the best I can be, to be compassionate, to be empathetic and to allow vulnerability with my clients, my students, the people I work for, my family and my friends.
It is about learning how to set boundaries with unconditional love. When we come from an aggressive space it triggers people and this is where the division occurs. When we come from love, we allow for growth, for our relationships to evolve and we allow ourselves to come from a place of wholeness.
In feeling fragmented over the last month, I have witnessed myself say yes to things that don’t really serve or excite me. I have not been in a place to hear what is being asked and to take a moment to connect inwards and simply allow spirit to lead the way, to trust my needs will be met, to say no to the things that don’t feel right and to say a resounding yes to the things that make my heart sing. My confusion and sense of overwhelm takes over so I end up agreeing to everything, committing to nothing. I come to a place where I feel burnt out. I keep searching outside of myself for the answers. My mind takes over and I am in rescue mode. I end up thinking too much and telling myself that if I go see a coach or get a massage or maybe head home to Mam and Dad’s for some r&r, this is what will fix it. These are all great things to do but they are not the answer. I need to connect to me. I need to connect to my centre. I need to go back to my meditation, my mantra practice and I need to get back on my mat and feel my way through. I need to press the reset button.
IT STOPS NOW.
“Empathy minus boundaries is not empathy. Compassion minus boundaries is not genuine. Vulnerability without boundaries is not vulnerability... Boundaries are frickin important and they are not fake walls. They’re not separation. Boundaries are not division. They are respect. They are saying here’s what’s okay for me and here’s what’s not.”
It's time to start over and set some boundaries. If not now, when? If not you, who? We are the only ones that can set our boundaries so today I invite you to press the reset button and begin again.
Previous Blog Posts...