Thirty Day Challenge, Five Minutes At A Time

I've been really struggling.

REALLY struggling.  Like, yelling-at-people-in-traffic struggling. Disconnected-with-myself struggling. NOT-WANTING-TO-PRACTICE-YOGA struggling. I don't feel well --I've been eating things that don't agree with me (vegan things, but too much chocolate is too much chocolate, even if it's vegan.) I've been finding myself irritated by people--sort of in general.

That's not me when I am living my truth.

I think I allowed the world to set my agenda there for a while. There were a lot of stressful things that happened all together and I let it derail me. I lost my Yoga practice--the big Y yoga practice --in trying to serve as many people as I could, helping them find their own yoga practices.  I lost my breathing, I lost my mindfulness, I lost my meditative nature. I gained some weight and was amazed at how my old thought patterns and self-destructive voice just came roaring back. I lost myself.

I think that's what happens when I'm not living in true alignment with my values.
Well, okay, I don't want to overstate. Let's just say I backslid. I lost some ground. Nothing is gone forever, and the beauty of Yoga is that it meets us where we are, exactly at that moment.

Anyway, I was wallowing around in a bit of despair for while and then, I started, very slowly, gearing up to take myself back.

I got out my Life of a Yogi teacher training manual and reread it.

I'm almost off caffeine again.

I'm mostly off of refined sugar.

And today?  Well, today, I was ready to take action.

I talked to a Life Coach, Christy Diane Farr,  and am going to begin sessions with her. She's wonderful.  I've never done one-on-one coaching with her, but her energy is amazing and very healing for me.  She's very direct, she understands exactly who I am, and she calls me on anything that's out of kilter with that. You'd like her.

I bought the ingredients for a one-day juice cleanse. (It's new to me, so if I like it, I'll extend for a three day cleanse.)

And here's what I'm resolving:

  • For the next 30 days, I'm going to do my own yoga practice every day.  In addition to my teaching, I'm going to do at least five minutes of my own practice every day. I hope this will end up being a full Power Yoga practice every day, but my resolution is just to go to my mat and rediscover my love for my own practice.
  • For the next 30 days, I'm going to find at least five minutes per day to sit in stillness, reconnecting with my breath and working on my meditation.
  • For the next 30 days, I'm going to play my guitar for at least five minutes every day.
  • I'm going to write for at least five minutes every day for the next 30 days.
  • I'm going to spend at least five minutes in spiritual study, every day for 30 days.

So, if I do the bare minimum, that's only 25 minutes out of every day. Dudes, 25 minutes! I spend more time than that making lunches for my kids!

I'm inviting you to join me.

Here's what you do: You don't have to do MY list--you probably have a list of your own of things you know need your attention --things that fulfill you and bring you into alignment with your values. Things that center you. Maybe it's knitting or quilting or reading or cooking... find what you love to do that you're neglecting. And then throw in one or two things that you do that further your goals, but that you don't exactly LOVE.  Like, I really want to play the guitar.  Right now, I'm just very terrible at it.  But I am enough of a musician that I KNOW I'm terrible and it kind of hurts me to hear myself practice. I'm bringing my self-discipline to bear here, knowing that if I persevere, I'll be further down the road after 30 days.  And then throw something in that feeds your hungry soul --something spiritual. It doesn't have to be religious--it can be wherever you find something bigger than yourself: walks in nature, putting your hands in dirt, walking by the ocean.

I'm going to chronicle my progress--good and bad-- right here on this blog. You can, too.

Want in? It's only 30 days; what have you got to lose?


hokgardner said…
Five minutes a day of just sitting quietly and being.
Five minutes a day of reading.
Five minutes a day of walking.
Five minutes a day of laughing with my kids.
Barb Matijevich said…
I love those! I think that even if it's stuff we already do, MINDFULLY doing them--without multitasking --will add great joy to our lives. I'm really excited about this. (Less excited about this juice cleanse --so far, I had to juice two pears and add them to the first one just to get it down.)
Shaatzie said…
Glad to see you back on line. I journal, and when my life gets to full, too stressful, blank pages appear just when I need them most.
When I journal I put down my stresses and they are committed to paper which somehow relieves me of the stress.

And then there is my drum, and I follow it after starting a long slow beat, I let it lead me to where I ned to go—and sometimes it goes off like a herd of buffalo, and sometimes becomes a running stream.
What yoga used to do for me, now I drum and write. But yoga calls again, particularly when I feel stiff and sore, and know my muscles are crying out for movement.

So you inspire with your story, and I'm glad to follow the course you're taking, learning from you even from as far away as Virginia.
Barb Matijevich said…
Still hoping we are going to meet, Shaatzie--maybe when you are visiting your friends in Austin next! I've wished all my life that I had developed the journaling habit, but as many journals as I've started, I could never keep it going. Interesting, for a writer.

Anyway, I'd love to hear how you are doing if you want to play along. Do one gentle Sun Salutation today and let me know how it goes!
momwhoknits said…
5 minutes of knitting
5 minutes of reading what I want to, rather than what I have to
5 minutes of really takling with my son, rather than multi-tasking while talking
Ditto talking with my husband.
5 minutes to really think about what to have for dinner rather than rushing in and grazing. Of course, that means having to cook it, which usually takes far longer. But at least I am ready to go if I have thought about it.
Barb Matijevich said…
Oh, wow, I want to add these to mine. Maybe next go 'round.
tanita✿davis said…
Wow, there are so many of these that I could add to my own, but I need to think awhile... and think about how far off the rails I've gotten from some of what I wanted to do this year, and figure out how to get back. Thank you for the nudge, and I'm sorry it's been such a tough transition for you this move.

(I do want to hear all about this juice cleanse... I think it's smart to start with just ONE day, instead of FIVE, as a friend of mine is doing; I think five days would make me more cranky than renewed...)