As I collapse slowly into forward fold during a home yoga practice with @breakupcoachleo, I notice the dust piling up in the corner and make mental note to clean it afterward. I know I should be focussing on my breathing during this posture, but I can’t help but feel all the things pulling my attention away.
Clean the house, do the dishes, tutor my son, check my daughter’s homework, water the plants, feed the goats, chickens, cats and dog…shoot, I totally forgot to feed the dog tonight!
Ok I’m back!
So there I was in forward fold and I wonder…why is our society so obsessed with being busy? Why can’t we revel in the beauty of the present? Because that forward fold felt so great!!!
Last night I read a chapter called Smiles from “Untamed” by Glennon Doyle. It captured me when she spoke about Paris, “I had never been to Europe before. I was charmed. Paris is elegant and old. Being there made me feel elegant and young. It helped me forgive America for our arrogance and fury. In Paris, surrounded by ruins of ancient baths, guillotines, and churches more than a thousand years old, humanity’s mistakes and beauty are unfurled like a mural. In America, we are so new. We still fancy ourselves conquerors and renegades. We’re all still trying to be the “firsts” to do this or that. Can you imagine?…Paris is calm and certain. It’s not going to startle easily, and it already knows the words to all the songs. Everywhere I looked in Paris, I found proof that leaders come and go, buildings are built and fall, revolutions begin and end; nothing—no matter how grand—lasts. Paris says: We are here for such a short time. We might as well sit down for a long while with some good coffee, company and bread. Here, there is more time to be human, maybe because there has been more time to learn how”.
Is that our problem in North America? Are we so young and arrogant that we don’t know what the “good stuff” in life really is? The things that really make life worth living? Because it’s not clean houses and big pay checks…it’s connections. Connections to each other, connections to food, connections to the Earth and most of all, deep connection to our beautiful selves.
We spend so much of our time looking for validation outside of those connections, externally (job, title, status, fitness level and so on), that we miss those profound, life-altering and deeply important connections to what really matters.
Now, if this pandemic and isolation has taught us anything, it’s the desire to foster these connections, because since we lost them this last year, the yearning to get them back is strong.
I was in a workshop the other day and asked everyone to tell me where in the world they would travel to if they could right now. No one said, hot beaches, sunny cruises or tourist destinations. Everyone said a place where their family resides; they miss those connections. It took a worldwide pandemic to figure it out. Let’s not lose sight.
What matters most is not how clean your corners are, rather maintaining your connections to others and to yourself. How can we be more like Paris and be ok with not doing, rather simply being?