Yoga Me Well Blog

Out of the Ordinary

I remember in my early 20s having the sense that to live a ‘normal’ life would be a lacklustre existence.

Striving to create something bigger drove me to ground again and again. Though outwardly I appeared to have an interesting, creative life, I was too often exhausted and confused, wondering when I would relax into the satisfying plateau of my Arrival, and enjoy myself.

It wasn’t until glossy work and health fell away, fruitful endeavours became overripe and financial stability disappeared that I emerged – floundering – in the wake of ‘normal’. 

There was no denying I had chosen this place. And it felt Less than even ‘normal’.

Luna Park – colourful chaos anyone?

It wasn’t until glossy work and health fell away, fruitful endeavours became overripe and financial stability disappeared that I emerged floundering in the wake of ‘normal’.

There was no denying I had chosen this place. And it felt far Less than any ‘normal’.

As perspective gathered, my eyes opened to precious everyday things.

I began to live in moments, rather than days or weeks. The Ordinariness of it all taught me to appreciate that I was living out of the ordinary, simply by feeling and seeing things that others seemed not to notice or care about.

The need to strive fell away, and with it, the desperate urge for bigger, better.

Contentment snuck in.

The undulation of normal is richly textured with challenging, progressive encounters, tempering thoughts and moments of great beauty.  To bear conspicuous Witness to our microscopic wanderings is liberating.

We watch ourselves fall, but ever more gently, growing the strength to rise and rejoin the flow.

Warmly,

Liv 

Liv Mitchell

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Liv Mitchell is a hatha yoga teacher, relaxation instructor and freelance writer/editor who specialises in holistic wellbeing.

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Feeling challenged? Here’s what you can do

 

Sometimes Life’s challenges flow thicker and faster than we feel we have the capacity to handle. Here are some simple  practices I follow to get through. 

  • I acknowledge that it’s more than I feel capable of handling and compassionately accept my reality.
  • I release the need to resolve the matter (or matters) all at once. It will take the time it takes. 
  • Gratitude practice – I ponder all the things I can be deeply grateful for: a roof, clothing, food, running water.
  • I linger in moments of great beauty around me until feelings of anger, injustice or anxiety dissipate.
  • Cultivating contentment by reflecting on what is good – friends, health, successful and happy times past, how little I need to be content, access to Nature, the blessing of a Life that forges resilience.
  • I allow myself to be happy, despite the issues , even if it’s only for a few minutes.
  • I remind myself that I am in control of my response to Life.
  • Visualising things I’d like to enjoy in my life changes my chemistry and perception of what is possible.
  • Doing something that soothes me (beach walk, bath, read a book, mat practice).
  • Call upon a friend, or actively distract myself in pleasurable or therapeutic activity (cleaning! decluttering!) until I can return with a more able attitude.

Warmly,
Liv

 Term 2 yoga begins next week. Autumn practices to ground & release. Join us 🙂
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Liv Mitchell

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Liv Mitchell is a hatha yoga teacher, relaxation instructor and freelance writer/editor who specialises in holistic wellbeing.

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The Getting of Wisdom

“What would a wise man or woman do?”    

As a moment by moment practice, I love this suggestion made at the philosophy class I attend. 

“Wisdom” was on our discussion agenda recently. What are the qualities of wisdom, we asked, what is wisdom? Among our responses were: “acting with integrity”, “acting from a deeper connection to [Insert your higher power of preference]”, “having a balanced view“, “clarity of intention”, “the ability to act” and “assertiveness”.

Most of all, we decided, the getting of wisdom comes from gathering and examining life experiences, and integrating and applying the outcome of our learnings.

This idea has been offered by sages and philosophers for centuries.

The unexamined life is not worth living – Socrates

It’s not what happens to you that matters, but how you respond – Epictetus

Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom – Aristotle

I never lose. I either win or learn – Nelson Mandela

We discussed how there must be varying levels of wisdom then too, as we grow in our awareness and openness to learn from life’s challenges. 

I particularly enjoyed Susan’s story:

“I got up early and was about to go out and thought of my husband lying in bed still asleep and the question just popped into my head, ‘What would a wise woman do?’.  So I went and gave him a kiss. He just made a funny noise and stayed sleeping. I thought he might have reacted differently and was a little disappointed, but then I realised the question had moved me to an act of love.”

What a gentle way to inspire ourselves to live more thoughtfully, don’t you think? 

Liv Mitchell

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Liv Mitchell is a hatha yoga teacher, relaxation instructor and freelance writer/editor who specialises in holistic wellbeing.

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