Some of us bounce out of bed, ready to attack the world...
Some of us slowly crawl, rub, manipulate, ache, poke and prod, massage and coax.
And others have a team of professionals that help us care for our whole body wellness so as we age,
we can gracefully flow through our days with ease and contentment...
our whole busy, filled days.
I used to tell my students in Sanford that my triad of wellness professionals was my massage therapist Crystal, my chiropractor Andre and my vitamins and supplents guru, Mary.
Crystal could get so deep under my shoulder blade to work out those 400 weekly chaturangas...
the tinest shift allowing her access to deep rooted tension. Tension that built to no patience, edginess... even anger at times.
Andre could make one tiny adjustment and all my strange pains like my left middle toe or a tweaky shoulder, disappear. He could even adjust my collar bone for a micro breath enhancement. What yogi doesn’t love that?
Mary created a combination of magnesium malate, Vitamin D and several other supplements for my dull muscular pain in my left hip. We micro adjusted dosages until we found the magic combination. Patience and micro tuning...
But then life happens...
We sacrifice our own care for that of others.
Our families, obligations, and work.
We miss one appointment, we “forget” to pick up our supplements or reschedule appointments because of school engagements or social responsibilities.
ever so slowly
our healing path takes a detour.
So subtly, our enthusiasm for life fades.
Our responsibilities become a little more burdensome.
Our stress level increases.
Our patience decreases.
Our micro adjustments working in reverse.
an unwanted call comes in
a fussy child demands more
a responsibilty gets forgotten
a seed of doubt starts to wiggle.
Tiny aches seep in.
We forget small details.
We lose patience a little to quickly.
The small micro adjusting we may have committed to in the past, seems momumentous at times.
There is just no time...
Our society is so preoccupied with time. We have four hundred clocks around us everyday... we check them perpetually.
I am not sure whether we do this to see if we can cram one more thing into our already overflowing day or if you are like me...it is an obsession over not being late (my dad taught me “if you are not 15 minutes early wherever you are going, you are late”).
But these clocks...
They rush us...the make us anticipate the future... 5 minutes from now or five hours.
They pull us out of the present moment... with our kids,
or our pets or work...
“Hurry up” is our mantra...
Often to the point that we multitask to get more done in a compressed amount of time.
Clocks make it impossible to be still...
In this moment.
In this space.
We check the time
(We hop on that mental train...)
“I have to do _______ at __________ (time).
I won’t have time to do x, y,z...”
A time shift came within me when my daughter was born. The nurse and I almost came to blows when she asked me to take off my watch.
Bare bottomed, free as the day I was born in front of complete strangers...in stirrups, no less. I had no argument at all even though I am as modest as the day is long but...
I. Will. Not. Give. Up. My. Watch!
But after an obscene wrestling match, pleads and even tears, she won out. (Well she did hold the pain meds that ensured my comfort during delivery)
When we returned home from the hospital, my watch was MIA. Stressed about this but more so exhausted from nursing and rocking and wiping and loving...
I just let the search for my watch fall by the wayside. It didn’t matter...I wasn’t even leaving the house. I was on baby time. No where to be late to. No one needed me but her.
I was singing at 3 am.
Sleeping at 10 am.
Eating when I could.
Don’t even ask about bathing...
Time meant nothing....
Only my child and all those breaths and sighs and hugs we shared.
My obsession with time fell away.
My pace slowed.
My mindfulness increased.
My patience compounded daily.
My laughter lighter.
My smile more genuine.
My heart at peace.
Years later...still honoring Nurse Ratchett’s invaluable lesson about time, (I NEVER DID find my watch) I tried to share this lesson with my yoga students.
I removed the clock from my studio wall...
and MOST of my students had mild coronaries as well as a few of my teachers.
“But I need the clock there because of x,y,z.” They rationalized and complained. I remained steadfast...
because I knew...
And they found they enjoyed class more without clock watching. There were more mindful in their poses. They FELT their poses more. They even felt like classes were twice as long because the clock was not “rushing” them.
I was eventually thanked for this microadjustment. This shifting of the wall clock to just the opposide side of the wall to our lobby.
gave more space and time.
Time to breathe.
Time to feel again.
Time to be still and listen to our heart’s speakings.
These whispers tell us everything we need to know if we are quiet enough to listen.
A shift...a micro adjustment
Gives us more time.
A face down clock on the bedside table allows our body to wake us when we are done resting and restoring.
We may actually go to bed at a different time if there was no clock watching. Sleeping when we are tired is so far beyond most, that people scoff if you even mention it.
Maybe a wristwatch left on the dresser in the morning allows us time to nurture our children before we send them off to school.
Oh but then...
an incorrect time on a clock...
that may be even worse for our mental state. Our obsession with time kicks into overdrive.
Changing the clocks twice a year is a small adjustment that is necessary to function in our society.
Yet it brings me so much angst.
this small adjustment in my life.
I never...never get them all changed in a timely fashion. My body and mind takes three weeks to catch up to this one hour difference.
My car clock never got changed this fall. My ex husband, very methodically made his rounds to all of our clocks two times a year, promptly, so I never even knew the adjustments had been made (until my body fought back with the need for more sleep in the weeks to come).
Let me just say, I always arrive on time wherever I go... always....
but every time I glanced at my car clock a sense of panic set in.
Oh my god...I am late.
My rational brain got overridden by my nervous system. My blood pumped harder by my quickening heartbeat. My palms got moist. My breath shortened. Pupils even dilate.
But I KNEW I was on time! I just had not changed my clock!
This clock threw me into a tailspin over and over. (It was way too much trouble to get my car manual out and make that small one hour adjustment to our “fall back or spring forward” time.)
I think I refused to do it subconsciously because I hate the time change.
But it was seriously...
and all that nervous, panicked, freaking out every time I got in my car,
could have been eliminated.
How often do we take this mentality to our yoga mats?
We know better but we are stubborn.
We refuse out of principal.
But my other teacher never did it that way.
The micro adjustment of a thought can release burdens we have carried too long.
The micro adjustment of a habit could create such a dynamic shift in our lives that our priorities get completely reconfigured.
The micro adjustment of a perception could open up a new world of possibilities by revealing a hidden potential.
The micro adjustment of a pose could open us up to a state of bliss that could carry us through our day by allowing our prana to flow more freely.
A shift in your clock
My mental micro adjustment...
No time gives more time.