Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Rest and Tune In

stop and smell the roses, look at the clouds, take a breath
This weekend at the rehab hospital, I worked with a man who had had a stroke about two weeks prior. He was a high energy entrepreneur, very active. He was in his 50's (unfortunately I have been seeing many people under 60 having strokes these days) and raring to go. I watched in shock as he answered work calls from his hospital bed during our treatment session. I listened as he expressed his concern about missing work meetings that day. He was clearly frustrated about how this medical event was slowing him down and it seemed that he hoped the whole thing would just be over soon so he could get back to business. I gave him the usual talk, his job right now is focus on getting stronger, and that will give him the best shot at a full recovery.

Later that day I taught part of a yoga class with some other graduates from my yoga teacher training. After leading the class through a series of powerful standing poses I instructed them to rest on their bellies. I watched as they huffed to catch their breaths and I told them the story of the workaholic stroke survivor I met that day. I gave them permission to rest and listen to my words and to their own bodies. I encouraged them (and myself), when given the rare opportunity to rest: Take it! And maybe even give ourselves permission to take rests when it's not encouraged and provided, just because we need it.

We all might benefit from slowing down and taking time to rest. We might hear a lot if we quiet down and listen to ourselves and the messages our body and spirit are sending us. We often don't take time to rest and rejuvenate until it's too late, until we are sick or can't muster the energy for anything at all. I've heard it said like this: When you are supposed to hear a message, first the universe sends you a letter, then it sends you a package, then you get hit by a bus.

Oprah has a similar more eloquent way of putting it:

"I say the universe speaks to us, always, first in whispers. And a whisper in your life usually feels like 'hmm, that's odd.' Or, 'hmm, that doesn't make any sense.' Or, 'hmm, is that right?' It's that subtle. And if you don't pay attention to the whisper, it gets louder and louder and louder. I say it's like getting thumped upside the head. If you don't pay attention to that, it's like getting a brick upside your head. You don't pay attention to that—the brick wall falls down. That is the pattern that I see in my life and so many other people's lives. And so, I ask people, 'What are the whispers? What's whispering to you now?'" — Oprah

Where can you listen to the whispers? What do you know you need to do "before it's too late" that you are not doing? When can you give yourself the permission to rest and tune in? Can you find a way to build this in to your everyday life?

No comments:

Post a Comment