Sometimes hard work creates amazing things. It’s inspired, and inspires everyone it touches. I’m writing on an iMac, iPhone on the table texting with Tara. Out my window is a really pretty Apple store. Their hard work seems to be working!
But sometimes hard work is just hard. It doesn’t go anywhere. Wheels spin. Barriers are fixed in unbreakable stone. So what’s the difference? How do we know when our hard work is the right kind?
I like to tell yoga stories. It’s not that we all have to do yoga every day to get anywhere.
It’s just that yoga makes everything so easy to see. It also makes everything so easy to do. Even the hard things.
I see a lot of people in yoga invest tremendous energy in making themselves stiff and immovable in poses. If they’re visiting Strala, sometimes I’ll check in with them after class.
It turns out, nobody likes all that stress and strain! It doesn’t feel good. But they thought it was supposed to be that way. You have to work hard, push hard, knock down some walls, if you’re going to get anywhere.
If you believe the world is a rough place – that you have to strain and punch your way through obstacles to go places – hard work will always be hard. It also won’t feel so good.
Putting stress and strain into your body and mind never feels good. After a while, feeling just shuts down. Without feeling, no intuition. Creativity leaps out the window. Decisions become impossible. Consult the textbooks! See what other people did! Your work is no longer yours. Without feeling, you’re not even there.
How could the work that comes out of this work be what you want? It’s not likely. It might happen by accident. But you can do much better than that.
It’s also possible to do things a little differently.
Rather than putting more stress and strain inside you, you let it leave. You move easy. You feel. From feeling, there’s intuition talking to you again. Creativity rushes in. You don’t need to break any stone walls. You can just climb them.
You can see the world as full of barriers, rules, and controls. Or you can see there are no barriers, no rules, and no controls.
The world is not just how it is. I’ve been with people working through all kinds of challenge. It’s impossible. They’re smiling, they’re having a good time.
I’ve been with people dying. Even through the pain, there’s a sweetness, calm, and caring in their life. This person is dying, and there they are, inspiring you in how they live.
Many years back, I remember walking from a yoga studio after class, and see the teacher curse a cab for blocking her street crossing. Pebbles in the road can look like mountains. Even more odd, some people don’t like mountains!
I know it’s not just yoga that does it for people. It’s how you yoga. It’s how you live. It’s the difference between good hard work, and hard work that has no good in it.
The world – your work, your relationships, your yoga – is all your experience of it. You create that experience. It’s yours. It’s you.
So what do you want all this to be? As a start, make your yoga what you want. Feel. Make it feel good. Explore. See you what you find.
Next, make your life what you want. You can. See that you can. And do it.
About Strala Yoga Training
Strala combines the movement and healing wisdom of tai chi with the form vocabularies of yoga, tai chi, qigong, and Traditional Chinese and Japanese Medicine, to help people release stress, move easily through challenge, and live radiantly inspiring lives.
It begins with a mindset, that says our best way to get where we’re going is to feel good along the way. It also works miracles for whole health, helping us to find ease in our bodies and minds, and create the right conditions both for healing and optimal performance.
In our Strala Training Courses, you learn to shape your destiny on every level that counts, from your psychology, chemistry and neurology, to your chromosomes and even gene expression. The unique set of skills you develop – for connecting with yourself and others, unblocking your energy, healing what needs healing and accomplishing challenge with ease – uncovers your ability to create the life you want, and be an inspiring leader to the people around you.
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