My new yoga place is a subway ride away, and because I got a great introductory offer… I go a lot. Each time I get out of the subway I take the street exit on the left. I never actually read the signs, it’s just the way I’ve always gone.
But once I get up to the street, I see that I’m on the wrong side. This happens every time!
Today, I actually took a sec to read the sign. I saw the one on the OTHER side said NE exit. So this morning I went up the right set of stairs. Both literally right, and right where I needed to be!
Of course, it’s not a huge deal to get out on the wrong side. I only had to cross the street. But I did it every time! I wasn’t thinking about it — I just went the wrong way.
Back to this morning — there I was on the right side, feeling pretty great that I’d actually tuned in to read the signs. Finally, I didn’t have to cross the street!
As I got into the elevator to take me to the yoga studio, a text came in that I immediately started to read. Next thing I know I’m walking out of the elevator on the 6th floor. Yoga is on the 3rd floor! The guy getting out informs me “You never pushed the button.”
Of course I didn’t push the button!
Every time I had ever gotten in that elevator there’s always other yogis going up with me. So this morning when I saw a guy in the corner of my eye (that was glancing down to my phone) I assumed he was on his way to yoga. Forget that he was fully dressed in a suit and tie. Those guys do yoga too! Oh, and remember where my full attention was? (Text messages can wait!)
One minute I’m feeling ready to break old habits and follow the signs. The next I’m getting out on the wrong floor!
C’est la vie.
Staying present is a practice.
Breaking old habits is a practice.
And I probably shouldn’t ever assume anything anymore.
I’ve just got to keep trying to follow the signs, especially the ones that come from my body. Like at 4pm everyday I get a caffeine craving that’s totally in my head. Once I start drinking the coffee it doesn’t even taste good. If I’d listened to what my body said just before placing the order, I’d hear “Don’t get that! Go for the green juice instead!”
Following the signs from your body is a practice too.
It helps to take a few mins each day to truly listen to what it’s saying. A quiet mind helps you hear. And following the breath helps quiet the mind.
Okay, so it’s a little meditation I’m suggesting. I know, I’m not usually pitching stillness. But it’s like a direct ticket to tuning inward. No need to get caught up in thinking that meditation needs a cushion, alter or even lotus pose. Sit anyway you like, and try it for a moment. Just long enough to hear what’s happening inside.
Because that’s where the true answers come from.