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Grit.

May 5, 2017

       A few years ago I attended a yoga workshop that inspired me to begin a consistent meditation practice. Not long after the workshop, the the wave of inspiration began to subside, and resistance and obstacles started showing up in my practice. There was the physical and emotional discomfort of being still, the never-ending distractions that come from the external world and of course, the mind’s tendency to wander. In the first year or so of meditation, I was often frustrated by the clutter of distraction in my mind and I couldn’t get anywhere near the tranquility I experienced during that yoga workshop. It made me want to give up; in fact, there were times when I walked off my mat because my meditation wasn’t “perfect.”
       Commitment of any kind inherently requires some aspect of our life to change in order to make space for this new commitment to take root. Until this new commitment becomes ingrained, the only thing we can do is show up. Show up for your commitment when it’s not fun, pleasant or fascinating. Show up, especially when you don’t think it’s working. Each time you show up, it is a demonstration that you are willing to sacrifice the familiarity and comfort of your habitual pattern.  
       Whatever it is that you are committed to and regardless of how well this process is going for you, I applaud you, and I encourage you to keep at it. It might take years before it feels a little less daunting or frustrating to show up everyday, let alone seeing any huge progress. Years later, my meditation is still often just showing up to sit still, although the desire to walk off my mat has decreased. It might take a few more years for me before tranquility can be easily accessed with each meditation, but for now, I find that the softening of resistance alone is worth all the effort.   

 

Warmly,

Bayeshan

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