I know it’s not very yoga-ish of me to title this in such a way, but really why are we in such a hurry? We rush from day to day, place to place, task to task, trying to race someone (or even ourselves) to what? What’s at the end that we are so anxious to reach? Is it a prize? An acknowledgment? More money? More what? There is so much we take for granted these days when really what matters is time. Time spent with the ones we love. It doesn’t matter where you are; it’s who you’re with. You will never get yesterday back, and you have no idea what tomorrow holds. Enjoy today and those around you and slow it down. Give a smile. A loving touch. Notice the world. Feel the breeze on your face and bask in the sunshine – or cloudshine, or rainshine, or moonshine – whatever Mother Nature is giving you at this moment.
Yesterday my brother and his family were robbed. In the middle of the night, a group of thieves entered their home while they were sleeping and took every piece of photography equipment he owned. He is a professional photographer so that amounts to a lot! In addition, they stole his laptop, the modem, an external hard drive, and his mountain bike that he used to ride their daughter to and from school. And for what? Why take someone else’s things – things someone worked so hard to get and maintain – for your own personal gain? How dare you violate someone’s personal space like that? How dare you break into a space where you KNOW there is child sleeping? Do you have no respect for your fellow human beings? How would you like it if someone broke into your brother’s home and stole his livelihood? Why are you in such a hurry to make a dollar (or a rand)? What is so emergent in your life that you have to put someone’s else’s in harms way to further yours? Where are your children? Where is your family? Thankfully my brother and his were all undisturbed and unharmed. And things can be replaced. Loved ones cannot. But to those who broke into their lives… How ’bout slow the f**k down and take a look at what you’re doing!
This weekend I taught my first yoga class. And I must say this rushed theme played out there as well. No, nothing was stolen and I had the most fun. But as I was reaching the end of my routine, if you will, I looked down at my watch and saw I had 30 minutes left to go. What happened? Did I rush through it all? Did I chaturanga too fast? Were my students keeping up or gazing at me thinking, ‘What the hell is she doing and where am I?’ So I made up some extra stuff for the remainder of the hour and it seemed to work out well. But I also felt if I stayed in a posture for too long, or didn’t speak constantly, that they’d get bored. So I probably did rush through some poses, some vinyasas, rushed through some stretching, and even shavasana at the end. Nervousness was the culprit for me. However I must learn to slow the f**k down. There’s strength in a slow pace. It takes concentration and endurance to make deliberate movements and eliminate momentum one gets caught up in. Don’t get me wrong – momentum is great. Sometimes it’s what keeps me going. But try something a little slower. Anything. It’s much more difficult.You start to notice things about yourself. Your breath. Your muscle tension. Your thoughts. Your feelings.
We’re of the microwave generation. We want things now. We want things fast. Yet it’s not always the best way. Patience, persistence, and perseverance, my friend. Once I learned to slow my life down and truly appreciate it in the present (a feat I’m constantly trying to remind myself of, mind you), I realized what a gift it is. And how very fortunate I am. I may not have a lot of things… but what I do have is a very happy life with MANY wonderful people.
Have respect for others without judgement. We’re all going through something. No one’s life is perfect. And for goodness sake, slow the f**k down. Appreciate what you have and who you share it with. Because he/she/it just may not be there tomorrow.
Sending love to Patrick, Kelley, and Leila.