Remove The Rocks

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Remove The Rocks

Often we think that in order to move forward, we have to add something to our lives, to do something. But all we truly need to do is let go of what’s already there, holding us back.

A couple years ago, a single friend of mine was desperate to find a good relationship. She went on dates multiple times a week, trying every dating app, spending a fortune on making sure her hair, nails, and outfit were always perfect. The men she met would often initially seem promising, but would invariably disappear after a few weeks, never to be heard from again.

Another friend suggested that, instead of trying to do more, our friend stop dating for a while and instead focus on doing what made her feel happy. Eventually, she agreed, signing up to run a marathon and spending the summer training solo. We watched her grow strong and confident. We watched as one day, near the end of her training, she decided to go on a long run with a running group. And there, hair a mess, no make-up on, simply doing what she loved, she met a guy who also loved running.

My friend found what she had been looking for, yet at the same time she realised that she had gained so much more just by letting go. She had learned how to be comfortable in her own skin. She had removed the rocks of what she “should” do, how she “should” be, that had been blocking her path to happiness being the person that had always been there, underneath.

We spend much of our lives accumulating those rocks, listening to teachers, parents, and friends who tell us that we have to do things in a certain way, that our paths are limited, that our goals should be apparent. With these words, we build a limited space for ourselves, shaping our lives within its boundaries.

But yoga, meditation, and self-inquiry give us the power to see those boundaries—not as reality, but as something we created by believing in them. And they give us the power to see that, just as we built the walls around us, we can tear them down.

It’s never too late to begin to observe where you are stuck in your body, stuck in your mind, and stuck in your actions. It’s never too late to learn how to simply relax with, and accept, that stuckness. And it’s never too late to appreciate that just as you have the power to hold on, you have the power to let go.

Your true and uninhibited self is always there, waiting for you. All you have to do is clear the path to meet it. After all, “You are confined only by the walls you build yourself.”

Ellie Norton is a 2018 Lumi 200-hour Teacher Training graduate and a passionate yogi and writer.  You can read more of her reflections on her blog, What I Learned This Week.