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WISDOM WITHIN - August 2016 - Kansas City
Find Your Balance, In Yoga and Life
By Suzette Scholtes
A sequence in yoga has one move through four “balancing” poses without taking the foot to the floor. It demands great concentration, focus, and core strength. Only experienced students attempt this challenge!
A beautiful yoga “sutra” or thread from the father of yoga, Pantajali, in Sanskrit reads, “Sthira sukham asanam” which means to practice the physical poses of yoga with effort and stability but also with grace and ease. “To find ease in yoga is the heart of the practice,” writes Judith Hanson Lasater, the great teacher who brought restorative yoga to the USA with her famous book “Relax and Renew.”
Life is filled with duality, thus finding balance is something we all manage. How do we know about happiness if we never experienced sadness? How much do we appreciate the long days of summer compared to the short days of winter? Indeed, we adapt to our ever changing seasons and weather and even the wax and wane of the moon.
A few times a month I create one day of minimal computer contact, avoid driving my car, and spend time doing the things I enjoy. I may make a great meal or watch a wonderful film. Or I may read a novel.
To find balance, psychotherapist Jasmine Tanjeloff writes that your heart and mind are not being pulled too hard in any direction. Instead, we feel calm, grounded, and clear. The elements which pull us to different directions are both external and internal. Some pay attention to the external such as work, relationships, and activities and little attention to what is going on in the heart and mind. Others may be too reflective. An example: allowing your mind peace with meditation or to fire up with an intellectual challenge.
Feeling over-loaded with work this year, I booked counsel with my favorite therapist. What he suggested was effective indeed. He said get to work, then find a big box, and when you choose to stop working, put all your files, etc. into the box and put the lid on it. It may sound silly but this so works!
So how do we create balance?
Create opportunities for your mind to rest such as restorative yoga or meditation.
Give your light and love to others as well as to yourself.
Eat, drink, and exercise and treat yourself to some good things like chocolate.
Enjoy the “ride” as opposed to pushing yourself too hard.
Find ways to enjoy yourself each day, even something as simple as talking to a friend.
Reflect upon your life on balance of work and play.
Keep that list of goals, but add something that gives you “ease.”
Get clear on how to handle the doubts and fears which we all face.
My son travels for work and spends long hours at his desk and at the same time works to complete his MBA. He marks time to spend with family. With all this on his plate, I see he remains balanced. He finds time to exercise, takes a night off to share a beer with his buddies, and keeps his sparkling sense of humor. I doubt he might stand on one foot for a yoga pose but then again he just might like the challenge.
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Suzette Scholtes’ non-fiction writing won the prestigious “Writers Digest” award. Her passions are writing and yoga and she feels one needs a sense of humor for both. She founded The Yoga School of Therapeutics where she manages one of the regions prestige teacher training programs. 10400 W. 103rd Street,