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The Little Things

The ubiquitous "little things" have always been important to me; but during this particular phase of acute stress, the little things aren't simply important to me, they've become absolutely essential. With reference to concurrently tackling a career and full-time grad school, I go through waves of panic, contentment, overwhelming stress, confidence, on and on, blahbity blah. The list of things that need to get done on both fronts is literally endless. I could easily do nothing but work, class, study, work, class, study, rinse, repeat...and many days I do just that. For the sake of sanity, however, the reality of that cycle means I have to make more of an effort, be more intentional, to find pleasure in the little things.

Enter: Yoga. I've been practicing yoga for a decade now, but in those 10 years I've only a few times hit the stride of consistency I'd like. I feel the same way about massage. I need both weekly, if not multiple times each week, but you can guess how often I do either.

Well, I hit a wall today. I hit a wall after drafting an MBA team effectiveness analysis paper. That wall was called: Enough Already. That wall was also called: Business Writing is Soulless and I Can't Take it Anymore. I shut down the computer, gave myself permission to take a break, and went to a 90-minute relax & release class. I cried for a good 20 minutes in the middle there.

Yup. Cried. Don't know why. Apparently as I let myself relax, it wasn't only my muscles that needed to be released. I'm lying on my back in frog pose, looking like I'm either giving birth, having totally rockin' sex, or enduring a pap smear, when I started to cry. The water works continued as I rolled up and over into full child's pose. It wasn't a distracting sob, in fact I doubt anyone even noticed, but as I centered my breath, I couldn't stop the tears.

There's something beautiful about that, but there's also something really disturbing about it. I'm tense to the point that a simple yoga pose tips me off my rocker? Not cool. What this teaches me (again) is that I can't let life get to the point that I hit That Wall before I pay attention to taking care of myself. If I took time for myself more consistently, rather than saving it all up for one enormously cathartic yoga class, maybe the sensation of relaxation wouldn't be so novel.

Work on that.

More Little Things, Or Fall Leaves

Proust was a neuroscientist