As I sit in the café at the Dolphin Discovery Centre, I am surrounded by the happy sounds of people enjoying the café: the open space, families enjoying time together, and in some cases the celebration of a birthday with generations of the family together. Happy gatherings of people wait for the next cruise to take them out to see dolphins in their natural environment. As I observe all this it reinforces my focus word for 2019 and that is “Connection”.
As many of you know, over the past few years I have taken a word and intention to journey the year with. Last year was my year of Extreme Self Care and upon reflection, I find it is an ongoing journey as I realise how challenging it is to put oneself first in the area of self-care! I used the word extreme because I personally felt I needed to take extreme action due to a long absence of any meaningful self-care. When reflecting with a wise friend we discussed the use of the word extreme. My friend felt it was a bit harsh and that we don’t need any extreme of anything, rather balance being more the order of things. I pondered this and came to the conclusion that at the time I needed to take extreme action in the area of self-care to make it meaningful after so long neglecting myself. Now that I have had a year of exploring that and what that means I have found a balance in what I need and how that might look as I embark on bringing that self-care into my daily life in 2019.
My self care begins this year with a renewed connection to silence. This means that I spend Monday mornings in silence so my morning walk or bike ride will be in silence by myself, followed by some study of sacred teachings. I had this practice well established a couple of years ago but it got eroded away until it vanished completely.
My self care will also be:
- Regular connections with my family
- Regular connections with nature
- Regular connections with creative activity
Connection came up for me during last year and I had a feeling it would be my focus for 2019. If I needed any signs to confirm that feeling I got them many times with the most recent being at Christmas when my son gave me a book with the title “Connect”. That was it! The final confirmation that I was on track.
Connection, for me, is part of this self-care process as I realise how much I benefit from connection to nature, connection to my family, connection I feel when exploring spirituality. I felt the deepest connection recently to my exploration of the Patanjali Yoga Sutras as I studied for my final yoga therapy assignment, a sense of wonder and joy in profound learning that will carry on past my graduation this month.
I look forward to sharing with you the many aspects of connection in our lives as we continue the journey of exploring our deeper selves in our ongoing yoga practice.