"I'm a fat, non-flexible, physically and socially awkward person!"
You see, "I'm a visual artist" and I struggled with literature, reading and writing in school. I have thought of myself as someone who is "not a writer." The truth is I've written all of the text on the 3 OMS YOGA website and when I read it, I thought, wow, that's an inspiring yoga studio. Wait, I wrote that! I have ideas and I CAN write! Another self-limiting belief: gone with yesterday's compost! If you have always thought of yourself as a creative person, or a logical person or a forgetful person, or a (fill in your blank)____________ person, YOU are the one thinking it so YOU are the one who can change it if you choose to THINK of yourself differently! TRUE. I'm here to tell you it's true. I was a fat, non-flexible, physically and socially awkward person. If you went to high school with me, you know it's true! Now I am a yoga teacher and I love people, I love myself and my life. If you don't believe me, read Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill or The Law of Attraction by Jerry & Esther Hicks. This theme is going to keep coming up, by the way.
We are creating in every moment by how we SEE oursleves and THINK about oursleves, and I'm not just talking a thought like: "Hm, I think I should take better care of myself. " Go deeper! I'm talking about the way you BELIEVE you are, the deep, unspoken beliefs you have about who you are, your self-worth, value, your loveability, self-acceptance, safety, fears. The thoughts that are what you ASSUME to be true or have DECIDED are true a long time ago or you have resigned to being true or AGREEMENTS you have made with yourself about your place in the world. I'm talking THOSE kind of thoughts. So in order to change them, you need to excavate them, dig deep, ask questions, get real, allow them to surface and then QUESTION them, like this:
"So, I'm not a writer, huh? Funny because I keep editing other people's writing and making it clear and concise. I've written some great stuff in my journal that is easily the quality of what I read in Elephant Journal. So, not a writer? Come on, silly!"
I'm inspired all the time and WOW I feel so grateful that my eyes are open to the inspiration that is around.... everywhere, always, when I am open to it!!!
It wasn't always like this for me, though. Do you want the backstory?
Seems like a good place to begin for Blog Numero Uno.
When I was a kid I had lots of skepticism about people and religion. My Dad is very dedicated to being Catholic and it was agreed that I would be raised and schooled that way. I did Catholic stuff like go to CCD to learn how to be Catholic and be an original sinner and feel guilty about it. I went through all the rituals, peace-be-with-yous, ash-on-the-foreheads, eat the body of Christ and drink his blood, and so on. It was weird!!! Everyone seemed to be on board with the rituals, but to me I didn't see any benefit or reason for it. No one explained WHY were were praying to Jesus on the cross, other than we are sinners and he died for us. No one explained the REAL teachings of JC and how to be a better person by being inspired by him. Guilt was the big teacher. I didn't jive with that. (It was the 70's!) In my head, I decided I rejected the whole ball-o-wax at age 6 when I couldn't drum up one single sin for the insistent Sister Christine. God bless her, she had good intentions.
My Mom on the other hand, well.... let's just say she was not afraid to do her own thing. Ha! To say the least. She was a seeker and still is. She explored so many ways from Mormonism to Shamanism and everything in between. By age 8 I already knew how to meditate, do creative visualization, journeying, yoga, chanting, mantra. She taught meditation, Reiki, Polarity, she was a vegetarian, sprinkled wheat germ and bee pollen on my food, burned incense, had altars and crystals, sound healing instruments, drums and skins, sweat lodges and so on. She brought me weekly to an ashram where I got fully dropped into the world of guru, devotees, chai-drinkers and vegetarians. White people sold their houses, moved to the ashram, changed their names to Devi and Krishna and kissed to feet of the guru. It was weird!!! No one told me why they were devoted to this human guru guy or how that related AT ALL to my peanut-butter-n-jelly life in White, middle-class Massachusetts. I didn't jive with that with that either. In my head, I decided I also rejected that ball-o-wax. I wanted to be "normal," white and blond, like the other kids in Swampscott, MA. I thought my Mom was a Hare Krishna and it freaked me out.
throwing the baby out with the bathwater
What I wanted from those religions or systems was some kind of concrete TRUTH. Something that actually made sense to me, that clicked, resonated, AH-HAHed in me, that passed with my internal truth-o-meter. I have been able to circle back and get the freedom to come to stuff on my own, in my own time and in my own way. The cool thing that I got from that experience of feeling totally weird and different from everyone else, is that I'm not as afraid of being weird and different. So I'm totally grateful for that. I'm grateful that I question everything, run it by my internal system of discernment: "does that feel, sound, look right to me?" The other cool thing I've learned really recently from my amazing teacher Susanne Conrad, is that I can take what resonates from my experiences with religion and spirituality, and let go of what doesn't. I don't have to reject it all, throwing the baby out with the bathwater.