So many people have jobs plopped on a desk chair behind computer screen, or these days...multiple computer screens. I know first hand how long a human body can sit in a chair without barely moving for hours at a time. Working on a computer for hours on end is so easy to do because we often get stuck in the massive world called "the internet". There is always something to do online, whether its send an email, work on a project, browse pictures and comments on social media, playing games, etc. It's an entire world at our fingertips and we barely have to move a muscle to participate. If you sit there long enough, most of the time your mind becomes completely complacent on what you're physical body is (or, is not doing), hence, horrible posture and the ultimate potential for pain and muscle degeneration.
The parts of the body that suffer the most from sitting at a desk for long hours are hamstrings, low back, shoulders and chest. That is a large part of our anatomy, and an even bigger part of our life.
For as long as I can remember, I've always known that a deep urge existed within me. My vision of this feeling has been a soft glow that resides deep within my soul. It feels strange attempting to write this feeling out in a blog post, because it's something I've only just pondered about since before high school. I've never described it in words, until now. I often think of it as a dim light, like something you might see flickering mysteriously far past the distant trees. This urge, this glow....has a way of its own. Sometimes it is dormant while I mosey through my daily routine, and sometimes it is fully awake, playfully dancing around. There is always a familiarity to it, despite it's random cycles. Though my life, I've often had to play "catch-up", running after it like it's a wild weed blowing in sporadic winds.
Are you awake? Or are you sleep walking?
Is there brightness in the colors around you?
Do you feel spaciousness inside your body?
Does your heart beat with a vibrant pulse that shakes your skin?
Is there room for your soul to dance wildly at any time of day?
Pinch yourself? Did that work?
No surprise, it usually doesn't.
Now breathe. Well...okay, you're already breathing.
No, I mean....breathe.
Close your eyes. Inhale slowly and intentionally fill your belly so it expands out, then fill the ribs and puff up into the chest and collar bone. At the top of your inhale hold for a second or two, then exhale forcefully and loudly.
Do that again. And again. One more time.
Open your eyes.
Wake up. You are here. You are alive.
Be present and fully awake in each choice you make,
and each movement you lead.
Normal involuntary breathing is so automatic that the "simple" act of consciously breathing is actually not so simple. It takes self-control and patience, and this practice is called yoga. It's the practice of holding on and letting go. It's the practice of creating space in places there was none. It re-cultivates self-awareness and internal balance. It is the practice of peace. It is a place called "home", and as long as you have your breath, you have a home, where ever you may go.
Photo taken by Ekstasy Vine - Julie watching the sunset in Sounio, Greece, 2016
There is an arguable topic that presents a good example of the conflicting feelings of "being ready". It's having kids. One side of the argument regarding being ready for children is to first make more money, get finances in order, build a savings, and get some fun and travel "out of the way". The other side of this argument suggests that no matter what you do to get ready, there will always be something not quite in place to proceed with having children. I think most people try to find a happy medium between those two sides of the debate, ultimately re-defining this type of readiness as developing a responsible and sustainable situation rather than achieving big goals within limited time.
I think this discussion of "getting ready for children" is a good example of how unstable and unpredictable the feeling of "readiness" can be.
It can be overwhelming to ask the question, "Are you ready?"
It's a heavy beast to carry around, especially if you are asking it of yourself.
I sat next to an Iraqi man on the plane last week. It was going to be a long flight home from halfway around the world. We exchanged gentle "Hello's" as he took his seat, and I asked, "Are you leaving home or going home?" It was established that we were both headed home to Denver, Colorado.
This is a post I've procrastinated writing. I'll be honest - it's because I'm afraid of sounding...lost. In an arduous effort to not care what people think, here it is.
Hello, I'm Julie.
One of the many things yoga taught me was empowerment...and I hope to share that with you here.
Bring wisdom, nourishment and a deeper connection to all aspects of your life.