Upping My Discipline
I’m all about showing yourself compassion. Take, for instance, my personal practice. If I feel sick or exhausted or what have you, I take it easy on my mat. However, some days I get a little TOO compassionate, and do less than I am actually capable of doing. Self-practice is a fine balance between overdoing it and underdoing it… and perhaps I've been underdoing it a little too often.
My husband and I recently stumbled upon the work of Tony Robbins. Though I’d certainly heard of him before, I never felt any impetus to look into his work until my husband watched a documentary on him called I Am Not Your Guru. He was moved by it, and subsequently ordered a few of his books. I picked up one of them—Awaken the Giant Within--and started reading. One suggestion I liked: to think of your life ten years from now. Where do you want to be? Then you can make decisions, firm decisions, here and now on what kind of person you WILL BE (not “would like to be”) to give yourself the best chance of achieving your dreams.
I firmly believe yoga isn’t about “achievement.” However, for me, there were a few good takeaways as they related to my discipline for practice. I can DECIDE to be the kind of yogi who does her full practice when she has the time and ability… as opposed to the kind of yogi who would like to have that discipline. That’s the kind of yogi I have been for the past couple months—on days I just wasn’t feeling it, I’d give myself a pass. Some days, you’re genuinely sick or injured or in a time crunch and you can’t do much on your mat…that’s different. I’m talking about stepping up my overall discipline on days when there’s nothing problematic going on.
It reminds me of another book I read, Carry On, Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton. In it, she has a quote that she lives by and says often to her family: We Can Do Hard Things. Yes, that’s right. I can do my full practice even when I am uninspired or lazy. It sure is hard, but I can do it. I LOVE that quote.
I wouldn’t say I am a super disciplined person, though the people in my life probably would. I am just getting better at making decisions and sticking to them. And we all have the ability to decide at any moment who we will be from now on. Making one decision and sticking to it is empowering—even if you just start with a teeny tiny decision (which is probably a great place to start). Over time, sticking to decisions becomes a habit and people say, ”Wow, you’re so disciplined!” Really, you’ve just set yourself up for good habits.
I still don’t know for sure about Tony Robbins. I know very little about him…and I am skeptical by nature. But I will take my nuggets of wisdom where I get them. So thanks Tony for helping me kick my discipline up a notch. I am excited to see where that gets me in ten years :D