Happy New Year!
I hope you had a nice time during the end of the year, and that all that you experienced in 2023 was digested and processed so that there is space for all that is coming in 2024!
As some of you probably know, from the yoga point of view new year resolutions are less useful than intentions. Resolutions tend to be result oriented and can easily lead to all sorts of complicated states of mind such as being disappointed of ourselves or getting stuck in a stressful ambitious pursuit, they also tend to have more of an impact on the surface and not lead to a meaningful shift at the root level. Intentions are process oriented and they usually access the core of what drives us to think, be, act, and react.
This year I want to highlight an important intention that for some of us can be profoundly transformative. First, here's a quote from Chögyam Trungpa (The Myth of Freedom and the Way of Meditation) that summarizes it well:
“We must be willing to be completely ordinary people, which means accepting ourselves as we are without trying to become greater, purer, more spiritual, more insightful. If we can accept our imperfections as they are, quite ordinarily, then we can use them as part of the path. But if we try to get rid of our imperfections, then they will be enemies, obstacles on the road to our “self-improvement.”
Approaching failures and mistakes as vital experiences that offer opportunities for growth and wisdom, they can often lead to new directions that may have not been available before, and they usually have something useful to teach us about ourselves and others.
The simple universal reality is that most people fail much more often than they succeed. In fact, if you take a close look into the life of people who are considered as prototypes of success you will quickly find out that they had to fail, very often miserably, before they had success, more over, some studies even show that having success that comes after failure makes it significantly more rewarding (kind of obvious), and that means that leading a fulfilled life has a lot to do with our attitude towards failures and how we process and channel them.
The problem is that the word "failure" has a negative connotation, it is often perceived as some kind of dead-end or something to be ashamed of. I like to use another word to describe my shortcomings - pivot, which highlights the potential of calibrating, reassessing and even finding new paths and all the excitement of new possibilities that comes with that.
The process of gradually figuring things out through trial and error, and the courage to explore new territories and take risks - is highly rewarding. Failures are a necessary part of this process and without them it would be much more dull and probably less satisfying and enriching. This doesn't mean that we should fail on purpose but when we do we can benefit much more from embracing it then rejecting it.
Happy to hear your thoughts, comments or anything else that comes to mind!
Ending with a new year wish that two of my teachers sent the other day: ".. Wishing that 2024 is a year of transformation. May avenues of communication, tolerance, kindness, and compassion be cleared and may we find our way to peace in this troubled world".
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Looking forward to sharing yoga with you in 2024.
With love and gratitude
Check out the entire Newsletter: