Begin Again With Compassion

Morning Moksha yoga class is like a moving meditation. The words spoken serve to deepen the understanding of the poses but they also translate beautifully into a wise approach to everyday life. Here is the essence of my teacher’s words.

“Do not worry when you fall out of a pose. Do not chastise yourself or berate yourself. Instead move gently back into the pose. Begin again. Realigning with the pose is where the power for deepening your experience of the pose is strengthened. And over time you will fall out less and less often”.

It was a surprise and a relief to hear that falling out of a pose actually strengthens the pose.

So too in life when we ‘fall out’ of our intention for change. Often we have strong resolve and we say to ourselves, from now on I’m going to eat healthily or exercise every day or I’m going to keep my desk clear or I’m going to speak kindly to my partner or child. And then the inevitable happens, we slip up, we fall out of the pose and we are surprised and deeply disappointed in ourselves.

This is when the potential for change is most potent. This is when we can ignite our clear intention by beginning again with compassion for ourselves.

Ritual is a beautiful tool to assist you in beginning again with love and compassion. When ritual is used to interrupt destructive behaviors such as negative self-talk, it is important to keep it very simple.

Light a candle, take a breath and let the negative self-talk melt away as you utter some life affirming words, “In this moment I begin again”. Open your heart with love for yourself and realign with your intention.

The simplicity of this ritual will have a profound influence.

Years ago my dear friend Margaret gave me this card with a watercolour of a woman rising by artist, Nancy Bright. It’s one of the few material things I’ve carried with me over the years. It’s precious to me because of the sentiment of the words and because it’s written in Margaret’s handwriting.

Next time you fall, remember to pick yourself up by offering the hand of compassion.

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