On living with intention….

I go to my yoga studio three to five times every week. Hey, you tell me unlimited classes, I’m going to take as much advantage of that as I possibly can…despite the fact that some have told me that’s “too much yoga.” Is there really such a thing as “too much” yoga? Doubtful.
Anyway, every time we start class, the instructor asks us to set an intention for our practice. I imagine that’s just a standard yoga teacher thing. Regardless, I always try to think of something that I need to focus on for myself. Most recently, it’s been either strength or peace. I often combine each of those with something else, kind of like a main course and a side dish. I mean, it’s my practice so I’ll take from it what I can get. Usually, I combine them with something that’s seemingly opposite, but really it’s complementary. With strength, I also focus on beauty. With peace comes joy. And it almost never fails me. Focusing on things that are good and “breathing out that which no longer serves me” has helped me in huge ways over the last few months.
The levels of stress I’ve competed with in the last two or three months (to say nothing of the last two YEARS) have really thrown me for a loop. I mean, I’m a pretty hard core adrenaline junkie, but these loops have been way more than I ever wanted to be thrown for. I stopped being able to sleep through the night and I was constantly worried about something (usually finances). Things would wake me up in the middle of the night that I either couldn’t control or that I could deal with in the morning. But awake I would be and awake I would stay. My finances got completely out of whack, which is something that – in all honesty – has NEVER happened to me before.
Then, sometime back in January, I read the book “The Secret” and it changed something in me. I stopped thinking about all the negative in my life. I started using as much positive talk as I could come up with. There’s something profound and powerful in removing negative words from one’s speech patterns. It changes the way I approach so many situations in my life now. I try, as best I can, to find whatever silver lining is available. Sure, there have been things that have thrown me and I completely forget to do this (like my move, for example), but on the whole, I try to keep a positive outlook. I remember looking at my finances, completely overwhelmed and disappointed and angry about it, and I said, “I just need [this much money] to get things under control.” I did what I could, but the money never came. I tried getting a job at a bar. I did some secret shopping. But the amount that I needed just never came. So that lofty plan went on the back burner and I just plugged away at my debt as much as I could.
I started doing yoga in April and it changed my life. I learned to breathe and I learned to do it with intention. My teachers always remind us during class that, so often, during the day, we simply get too busy and forget to breathe. How is that even possible? I don’t know, but now that I’m aware of it, I find myself intentionally breathing during the day. It’s helped the way I run. That zen and peace that I found so many years ago in Japan, it’s slowly making it’s way back into my life through yoga. I’m realizing that maybe I should be more proactive about “setting my intention”…maybe it doesn’t just have to be about yoga. Maybe I should wake up, breathe a little, and set an intention for my day. After all, I’m really the only one that can control how good (or bad) my day turns out.
So I’m going to try that out. I’m going to wake up in the morning and set the course of my day. As for day one, it’s working out pretty all right so far.
Last week, we sold the house. For a massive profit. It didn’t really even hit me until this morning, but the amount that I said I needed back in January was almost exactly the amount that I got from the sale.

Intention was set. Intention was sealed. 

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