The Power to Change (Part 2)

Change is a process.  Like waves, a wise old friend once told me – a constant backward-forward motion bringing in the changing of the tide.

The Wave

The Wave, by Albert Bierstadt c. 1880

Last week, I explained how a university’s Positive Education Program revealed my surprising lack of pep when it comes to life change. Being in need of a major attitude overhaul, I decided to try out the idea of a gratitude journal.

It can feel kind of sucky sitting in bed at night writing a list of all the good things that happened in your day.  When I started, three was an achievement.

But slowly it became more natural, and the lists began to get longer.  My breathing eased.  Smiles came more regularly.  Yoga returned.

Then winter came, and everything stalled.

Tellingly, the final journal entry for 2012 was written on 19 June…

Freezing windy day. Got nowhere much…Survived the day.


Fast forward to 2013, and it’s the cyber community who I really have to thank for snapping me out of my winter induced inertia.

It began with a reminder from Bent People’s Adriana, of the power of yoga in dissolving psychic blocks.  Have you ever had a dream in the night that came true the next day?

That’s right, I said to self, I really need to take up yoga again.

But then the excuses started rolling in…

I can’t stand on my head before coffee.
Or after coffee.
After breakfast, ewww…no.
And by that time…

A few weeks later, still trying to combat my excuses, I read a post by Legionwriter’s Lucas, whose own gentle journey towards calm confirmed, again, the power of breath in rescuing our “beleaguered hypothalamus”.

The whole problem is Revenge, I told myself.
If I didn’t need that to put me to sleep,
I’d at least have time to meditate.

Girl in the Hat, aka Anna Fonté turned up the heat with Lies My Body Tells Me, forcing me acknowledge how much I let ‘pain’ tell me that ‘I can’t’.

It’s my lower back again, I whined.
No use starting ‘til I see the chiropractor.

Valerie then added her wisdom on meditation.  Apparently, it’s normal to fidget when you meditate.  And pain, like a child, will actually stop crying when it’s given some attention.

Interesting, I thought.  There goes that excuse…

But it was the question posed by Anna’s Wonder Woman post that finally got my attention.

What if, for two minutes a day,
instead of struggling with the concept of mind over matter,
we gave our bodies power to control our weak willed minds?

In that moment, my resistance faltered.  All the voices, pushing me forward, urging me on, rushed through, finally propelling me to act.

I struck a pose, and kicked the nightly Revenge habit in preference for yoga and meditation.

Water and Fire

Water and Fire, by Franz Stuck

Suddenly, it was no more The Prodigy’s “inhale, inhale, you’re the victim”.  I was exhaling, and it was like all that extra oxygen needed somewhere to go.

Afterburn’s guest post about jogging (of all things) gave me a radical idea.  Daniela Martinez talked about losing herself in the flow of the run, the importance (again) of breath – and of exercising to a playlist.

Honestly.  I’d never imagined jogging before, let alone to a playlist.  But the universe had just delivered a new album from Andrea, a loyal Twitter friend.

It was just the push I needed to finally break a sweat.

I swallowed yet another lame excuse – I don’t have an iP – and uploaded it to my old Nokia 6120.  Dusted off the old bicycle.

And I’ve been pedalling ever since.

Okay.  Winter’s still to come.  And the new tune is not exactly pumping.

But as I pedal, all I can hear is the rhythm of the breath, and the voices urging me to “make your desire’s reality”.

Sometimes, for forward momentum, all we need is persistent, gentle push.  So to all of you who got me there, thank you for giving me the power to change.

Ever had a moment that broke through your resistance?  What gets you There?