This morning as I laid in bed all snuggled up, enjoying the slowness of the morning and the day ahead; I reached over and grabbed my phone to check Facebook, and Instagram. What struck me was the number of posts about people’s goals and lists of things to accomplish before the New Year. Goals and lists designed to by completed by January 1st in an effort to start the New Year with a clean slate and fresh start. I laid there thinking about my own life, what did I need to accomplish before January 1st to start the New Year with a clean slate? I finally decided that getting a physical for the first time since college would be enough and that there wasn’t really anything pressing I needed to do. Eventually I scolded myself for checking social media first thing in the morning, turned off my phone and picked up my book.
I was a week behind in my readings from Meditations from the Mat and thought I’d spend some time reading, and reflecting. Day 35.
The posture never ends.
To begin the passage he talks about Vinyasa yoga, flowing from one posture to the next with unbroken breath and meditation. That the transition from one pose to another is a pose within itself, a pose often neglected as we look ahead to what comes next.
The lesson remains, however, that it is our tendency to pay attention to the postures themselves, but not to the spaces in between. So it is in life.
We are always looking to what comes next. The New Year, the next relationship, the next job, the next item on our to do list…never noticing the between, the transition.
The reality is that the posture never ends, it just shifts from one form to the next, one lesson to the next, one opportunity to the next. We remain life’s student whether we are inhaling or exhaling, in a relationship or out of one, saving the world or looking for a temp job. The posture never ends.
…The illusion is that there is separation, levels of importance, beginnings and endings. Yoga brings us to the understanding that the posture never ends.
It’s such a simple passage but it brought me back to my earlier thoughts of the New Year. Many people feel that 2014 is a fresh start, a clean slate but in reality our past never leaves us. Just as in yoga the pose before can affect how we feel in the poses that are to come. But perhaps, the New Year is really just a big opportunity for us to all focus on the transition, to complete that to-do list before the New Year. The movement from the poses of 2013 to the poses of 2014. Maybe it’s an opportunity to transition mind fully, to set intentions for the next set of poses that will uplift us and fulfill us. Maybe the New Year is not so much of a clean slate, but an opportunity to transition to a more healthy life, or a more fulfilling career, or meaningful relationship. Maybe the New Year is the opportunity to be sure our feet are stable, aligned properly on the mat, that we find strength in our legs to lift us to that new pose in the year that lies ahead.
As we come closer and closer to the New Year, I encourage you to think about how you’d like to transition. How can you align yourself on the yoga mat of life so you can find strength in your practice and life in the year ahead? For me the transition is about continuing to find the mat, and to strengthen my practice. About taking the time to be intentional and purposeful in my words and actions. The transition about aligning myself to avoid the busy traps, and choosing things in life that fulfill me, rather than just give me one more thing to do. It’s an alignment that makes me feel whole and uplifted, more positioned to take on the next year in my strongest form.