For the past seven years I have picked a word of the year to help set my intention. I use the word as a bit of a mantra, to set an intention at yoga and to inspire me. It is actually more that the word picks me, and when I hear it, it just feels right. This year my word is This.
In 2014 I took a yoga teacher training that changed my life. My teacher, Nicki Doane, came from Hawaii to my small city in northern Alberta. I never expected or planned to practice yoga, but, in early sobriety, I joined a studio and felt safe there. I would lie on my mat and think, yes, of course, this. It was like returning home after a long journey. Yoga was waiting for me to remember.
Anyway, I saw the poster with nicki’s picture and it called to me. So I registered for it, even though it was expensive and required 10 days off work over the year. It was the best gift I have ever given myself.
During the training Nicki would often say “If it wasn’t this, it would be something else”. Usually when we were in a difficult pose…so focus on this, because it is here and in front of you. Find the strength and the sweetness. Or, in more direct words, deal with this, or I will find something else, and, who knows, it might be worse. Different isn’t always better.
I think about this a lot. This is acceptance of what is. A willingness to work with what is. Not wishing things were different or making changes to try to get away from reality. Just This.
2021 feels like a year where accepting This, whatever it is, will be vital. There is so much uncertainty around covid, the economy, my own job, one kid graduating from high school, aging parents, etc. I can get caught up in what’s next very quickly. Projecting into the future and worrying crests anxiety.
So, This it is. A touchstone to bring myself back into the present.
So 2021, This is it.
Stillness and peace