It seems that when one is presented with an opportunity, it is often met with resistance. A dozen reasons may immediately volunteer themselves as to why one couldn’t or shouldn’t undertake the task.
Okay, let me rephrase and ‘own’ that observation. Why is it that when I am presented with an opportunity, I often balk at it before I even try? The specific situation I am referring to is having been presented with the opportunity to write an article for The Yogic Way Magazine. I had felt that there must be some mistake, even though the heading of the email was “this email is specifically meant for you, so please read”.
Then when I accepted that it wasn’t a mistake, that the email really was sent to me and on purpose, came “OMG, no, there is no way, no possible way I can do that.” It was as if the email speed dialled my ego, which was set on protecting myself from being ‘found out’ regarding the following:
- I am not a writer.
- I don’t know how to write an article.
- It will be stupid.
- I’m bad at English; I only have a high school education and that was many, many years ago.
- I don’t have anything to say.
And, furthermore, risking that:
- Neither my commitment to writing the article nor the time I invested were sufficient.
- My article will ‘suck.’
- People will read it and realize that I know nothing.
- I will embarrass myself.
- No one will read it, anyway.
I am sure I could go on, but you get the point.
So I did what self-doubt often does, I invited procrastination to join the party. So that is what I did for the past two months. I procrastinated. Seen in a more positive light, I was simply taking the time needed to process the invitation and to allow what felt right to emerge.
If I have learned anything both during my years of yoga practice and in teacher training, it is stop and breathe. So that is what I did, simply stopped and breathed until I was ready to begin. (Maybe others can relate to the practice of just avoiding things and putting them off ‘until there is no tomorrow!’)
While I have had a steady physical practice of yoga for quite a while now, when it comes to a steady consistent spiritual practice, I fall a bit short. It’s not that I don’t want to establish a more regular spiritual practice, it’s just that it is a daunting task. I fear that by doing so I will undoubtedly come face to face with my ego which will cause me to have to deal with all those above questions and more.
Nonetheless, dismissing ego with all the appropriate expletives, I have sat down today to trust myself, and have found courage in this opportunity. I have ripped off the band aid, put pen to paper and fingers to keyboard (because I really don’t know what I am doing and need to try both ways).
Hitting the send button as I submit the article, I find the water I have jumped into is deep.
Perhaps this experience will allow me to move forward, and I will uncover some truths about myself and be able to develop a more consistent spiritual practice….. or maybe it will just ‘suck.’ It’s worth giving it a try. Whatever the outcome, I will stop and breathe.