Seemingly ubiquitous at the start of every year, it can be a little frightening and overwhelming when the thought of making changes starts to flood our minds. The boundaries between what we think we need, what others want for us and what seems acceptable to society can all begin to blend together resulting in a distorted sense of “What do I actually care about again?” or even “What is actually and was originally me?”
Bringing in a helpful visual we can see a spectrum of “thought content” with one end being direct, purposeful, self-reflection constructed from our “internal” dialogue, core values and foundational beliefs, and the other end being the perceptions and thoughts of the external world, the thoughts of others seeking to enter our sphere of awareness. Blurring in the middle are the shared values, conversations and relationships that interact with our relational mosaics, the mosaics of our “assembled” selves constructed from the pieces, the stories, the hearts of all things with which we relate. Positive or negative, this “relational zone” can be the grounds for nourishing connection, as well as the battlefield for misconception and misunderstanding. Assimilating negative values, thoughts, and behaviors from others such that the negative thoughts begin to move from their place on the spectrum in the discerning “relational zone” to that of your internal dialogue, your personal values, and your unique story can lead to suffering, doubt and significant distress.
Subtle and without a clear beginning, this pattern of negative assimilation can be approached gently by cultivating an engaged awareness practice of our thoughts, their origins, and how they entered the story we are currently telling ourselves.
In no fewer words this practice, this way of being is
The Heart and Science of Yoga
So as we sit, ready and engaged to move forward with a new intention, we must first pause to reflect on the true origins of this desire to progress. Are our intentions driven from the language of an internal or external source, or are we dancing somewhere in the “relational zone?”
Now poised and aware we can now curiously ask, “What really is our greater intention?, what do we, if at all, want to change?, and how exactly did this thought even come into being?
You may be surprised by the anwer.
Wishing you all a joyful beginning to the new year!