I love being in love. So much so, I've spent the last 13 years of my life in relationships.
Having a boyfriend is amazing for so many reasons. The emotional support, cozy cuddles and inside jokes, among many other things, make coupledom rewarding and enjoyable.
Of course romantic partnership has its challenges and downfalls, as well. You have to compromise, communicate and make a lot of sacrifices to keep the peace and love strong between 2 people.
Now that I'm a single woman for the first time in a long time, I'm having some important realizations...
I was feeling really down and out in one of my favorite yoga classes the other day. My mind was running circles around recent events. Disturbing images and unsettling feelings were taking over my experience on the mat.
Then I asked myself, “What’s different between where I am now versus where I was 3 months ago?”
The only difference is that I had a boyfriend then, and now I don’t. Yes, this is significant. But then again...not really.
I’m still me. I still have the most amazing friends and family. I still get to practice at a beautiful yoga studio. I still have a great job. I still get to eat healthy food and drink clean water.
It occurred to me that I’d been letting my happiness be controlled by 1 element in my life. My focus was on the 1 thing I didn’t have when I could’ve been looking at the 1,000’s of wonderful pieces that were still there.
How much happiness are you investing in 1 area of your life? I think it’s normal to get stuck in tunnel vision.
When work is going well and you’re hitting your number? You’re on Cloud 9. You feel powerful, successful and excited. But when you have a down month? You feel like utter crap. Suddenly, nothing in your life is going right and you think you’re kind of a loser.
Perhaps you finally shed those lingering 5 pounds you’ve been meaning to lose for all of 2016. You’re absolutely elated! Your clothes look and feel better than ever. You walk around like the hot babe you know you are. Then you attend a few holiday parties, get off your diet plan and gain all 5 pounds back. Now all you want to do is hide away in your apartment. And you feel like a big, fat failure.
Maybe you’re planning to finally get engaged. You’ve been with your lover for 4 years and you couldn’t be happier. You’ve picked out the ring of your dreams and he knows the exact size of your finger. You get a manicure in preparation for a big night out. But...he never pops the question. You feel discouraged and disappointed, and you wonder if you’ll ever get married.
Any of these scenarios sound familiar? It’s easy to fixate on the 1 thing that’s going either super right or terribly wrong. I catch myself in negative thought loops more often than I’d like to admit.
Let’s make a pact to focus on the big picture, especially over the next couple weeks.The holidays tend to trigger strong thoughts and feelings. Remember: Your circumstances don’t dictate your happiness...YOU do.
Even if that 1 thing doesn’t go as planned? Your life is still full of beautiful blessings. Give your attention to what you have instead of what you lack.
Some days you hit every red light. Your customers yell at you. And then you lock your keys in the car.
Other days you call into the radio station and win tickets to your favorite band. You get 94 likes on your Instagram post. The lasagna turns out just right.
As humans, we experience good days and bad days. That’s how we grow, learn and appreciate the ebb and flow of life.
You can’t always control what happens to you. Sometimes you’re simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.
But you can choose how much or how little you suffer when things don’t go as planned.
I believe suffering happens when you resist your life.
When I’m going through hard times, or I don’t quite understand why something is happening to me, I say to myself,
“Don’t resist your life.”
This affirmation reminds me to accept whatever is happening in the moment. And rather than reacting to unwanted circumstances? I try to ride the wave.
I’m not perfect, but when I remember to feel my emotions come and go, like waves in the ocean, life goes much more smoothly.
Practice an attitude of acceptance by welcoming in the good AND the bad.
Allow yourself to feel any emotion that comes up. Fully embrace it. Ride it. And sooner than later? It will pass.
When you resist your life, or try to hide from the pain you’re experiencing, you actually give it more power.
Kind of like pretending you’re not sick when you know the best thing for your body is to take a day off and rest. But you keep pushing and pushing until eventually you’re forced to take 3 days off instead of 1.
I’ll say it again,
“Don’t resist your life.”
Trust that even if things don’t make sense right now, one day they will. Or at the very least? They’ll make a little more sense than they do now.
Where are you resisting? Give yourself permission to feel it, experience it, hate it, love it or whatever it is you’re being pulled to do…
Ride that wave to the other side.
And on the other side? Is freedom…