comparison-is-the-thief-of-joy

 

The meditation mantra of the month is SANTOSHA; contentment, fruits of practice. I wish I knew what the word is for discontentment or digging myself into a hole of agitation.  Lately I have been experiencing discontentment, which is apparently the fruit of my practice.  What’s the practice that brings about the fruit of discontentment for me?  Well, let me tell you about the key tools of my practice to make for a strong foundation of discontent.

1. I compare myself to others as if it is a clear, undeniable mathematical equation that is right or wrong.  President Roosevelt was right, comparison is the thief of joy, as well as the black-hole of confidence, and the Great-Square-Box -In-The-Sky that you either fit in or not.

2. Isolate and disregard. You didn’t invite me to play kickball with you? It’s all good cuz I didn’t want to play kickball anyway.  I really enjoy practicing Four Square against the wall, by myself.  I prefer it, actually. Seriously, it’s super relaxing.

3. I assume and make an ass out of u and me.  I assume, presume, and prejudge in an awkward attempt to control a situation and appear to know what I’m doing.  There is nothing wrong with being an ass though, right?

These are the primary tools of my discontent and they are pretty much applicable to all areas of life; family, yoga, health, home, marriage, clothes, body, work, friends, backyard, blah, blah, blah…  It wasn’t easy for me to see these unconscious habits and patterns.  So, the challenge for me this month is to recognize the practices that actually bring contentment.  What’s the opposite of my tools of discontent?

1. Encourage & draft off the courage, strength, and hope of everyone and their mother.  Giving a little shout out of encouragement  passes through my lips (even silently in my mind!) and bounces back to my heart like a boomerang, and that feels AWESOME.  Everybody wins.  Draft off other people I admire and am inspired by, like cyclists and wheelchair racers draft off each other in a race so that everyone gets pulled ahead, by the strength of one another.

2.  Join in the mess of the masses.  I need to get in the midst of community where it is noisy, chaotic, and warm with humanity.  I need to be a part of the group and not set myself apart.  Community is where it’s all happening.

3.  Ask questions like I’m getting paid for it. Avoid making assumptions like it’s pink eye or lice. Remind myself that asking questions is The Way to Not Look Stupid.

So, that’s it.  Well, there is probably more. But these are the practices of Santosha (contentment) I am focusing on this month. What about you? How do you practice discontentment?

Maybe you want to practice Santosha by coming to inspiring and rejuvenating yoga practices? What luck, what fortune – I TEACH YOGA?!  Here are two special opportunities for you to kick discontentment out the door.

TAP Your Power Yogathon!  Saturday, May 2nd, 9-10:30 a.m. @ Emmanuel Memorial Episcopal Church (SW corner of Westside Park, University & State).  Support the important work of The Autism Project of Illinois whose funding was recently cut by Governor Rauner.  This will be a donation only, all levels class to support TAP and encourage & inspire us all to do something together! Bring a yoga mat and a bottle of water.  There will be some yoga mats there to borrow if you don’t have one.  All levels of experience and inexperience are welcome! Bring your friends and know that you make a difference!  You don’t need to register in advance – just show up!

Becoming Pro-Voice, Saturday Morning Retreat, Saturday, May 9th, 9a.m.-noon @ Philo Presbyterian Church, Philo.  A fun morning of claiming your own body, opinion, experience, and great ideas as your authority, frame of reference, and essential voice to be expressed.  You Da Boss!  Please let me know you are coming, in advance. There is a limit of 20 people. $20 at the door. Bring your own mat (or let me know and I will bring one for you), a small blanket or towel, and a bottle of water.  Let’s find our great voice together and be one heck of a choir.

I always love to hear from you, whoever You are. 🙂 Thanks for reading along.

Peace on your head,

Rachel

 

 

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