This time of year can be a struggle to go to yoga, with holiday parties to attend and studios cutting back their schedules, the physical practice can unintentionally fall away and we can become irritated that we’ve lost access to our zen.
But in fact, this is probably the most important season to realize the importance of practicing mindfulness. “The spirit of the season” can wear on us as our inner world takes on an onslaught of vrittis (fluctuations of the mind). From materialism, to social expectations or family pressure, our center can be jostled like a jingle bell.
Yet if we can separate the thoughts from the spontaneous reaction, we have a chance to transform an accusation or an insult into compassion, or better yet, an evolution.
When your grandmother nags you about being single do you really believe she’s being critical or deep down does she want you to be happy and cared for? Do you think your belligerent, confrontational cousin is trying to ruin the celebration for everyone or are they struggling with their life and medicate with booze?
Our thoughts come from subtle stories we’ve made up. When we can witness and analyze them before acting, we have the opportunity to transform the energy around them.
So instead of seeing this time of year as burdensome and lacking time to practice, receive it as something of a unique circumstance to transcend yourself from the inside…that could be an incredible gift to yourself on its own because cleaning up our unconscious helps us to connect to others in kinder and more loving ways.
Happy Holidays everyone!