In a recent class, my yoga teacher asked us to “find the relaxation in the effort,” letting go of stress and tension even in the midst of our hardest work.
I needed to hear this. As the new year started, excited about new projects at work and at home, I’ve been eager to do my best and work hard. With this effort, though, I noticed over the past week my shoulders creeping up to my ears and staying there, holding in that internal tension.
Even now as you read this, you can check in. Where are you holding tension? Where do you hold tension in your body, mind, and relationships? Then, consider pausing. Take a moment to breathe and relax in the midst of your work.
At Fierce, one of Susan Scott’s transformational ideas is, “All conversations are with myself, and sometimes they involve other people.” What conversations are you having with yourself that cause tension? How can you change the conversation to be in service to yourself and others? You may want to notice the conversations you are having and how you hold yourself. Are you staying curious and welcoming all conversations with ease and relaxation? Or, with difficult conversations, are you gritting your teeth and bearing it?
In yoga, the practice can be grueling or invigorating, depending on how we show up to the mat. At Fierce we ask, “Do you want to enjoy your relationships, or just endure them?” This starts with the conversations you are having with yourself and others. As you finish reflecting here, on your phone or in front of your laptop, consider the conversations you need to have today. Pay attention to your body.
Our challenge to you is to take this mindfulness of both body and mind into every conversation today, this week, or as long as it serves you. Letting the tension go and finding ease in your effort allows ease in everywhere you show up. And you may just drop your shoulders an inch or two!