I have been accused of being stubborn and unmoving on one practice and I certainly am. It’s the single habit that when fully incorporated into one’s life results in the attainment of everything the practitioner desires. It may just be the hardest action to be absolutely consistent with, but the payoff for being so is undeniably unbeatable. The action is truthfulness.
Made famous by Don Miguel Ruiz in his book, The Four Agreements, the concept of truthfulness, or impeccability of word, is an ancient one. In Sanskrit it is called Satya, and in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali he lays out the special results one is embedded with when she achieves absolute truthfulness.
Patanjali Yoga Sutras 2.36 “Satya pratiṣṭhāyāṁ kriyā phalā ‘śrayatvaṁ”
As truthfulness (satya) is achieved, the fruits of actions naturally result according to the will of the yogi.
Plainly put, when one maintains absolute truthfulness, what one speaks comes absolutely true.
What this means and the part of the concept I know so many of you struggle with is in order to have everything you desire you must consistently do what you say you are going to do, fully and completely and in the time you say you will do it.
I know this is no easy task and that is why I created the concept Leveling Up. It is a simple method for helping you maintain truthfulness and it works like this: Begin by committing only to tasks so small you can not possibly miss the mark. If there is even a chance you may not be able to achieve something asked of you, do not agree to it. This in itself may take some practice if you are an over-promiser afraid of letting people down.
The next step is to praise yourself generously for even the smallest act achieved. Just note how good it feels to do what you say and give yourself all the love. Let the feeling truly touch you.
Once you’ve been practicing this awhile, your confidence will naturally build. You will realize you can commit to a bigger ask. Don’t over challenge yourself at this point. Go for something just a touch bigger and feel the great pride in that next accomplishment. The goal is to go slowly and naturally and stay consistent in your commitment to doing what you say you will do.
As you continue to do so you will be able to achieve more and more based solely on your word and the believability you have built in yourself. You will even surprise yourself with what you can accomplish by the mere fact that you have stated you will do so. This is a practice I used to transition to a full-time yoga teacher, to getting clients in the most prestigious sports clubs in New York City, to opening my own studio, traveling the world, starting a non-profit, and publishing My Bliss Book. I also used Leveling Up for getting an apartment on my own with no roommate, to upgrading to a one bedroom and then for making my first and second home purchases. Not to mention finding my life-partner! It’s a tested practice and it works.
The key is to be absolutely flawless with your word. That includes what you say to yourself and to others. If you promise to show up, you must. No plan breaking, no calling in “sick”. Only honesty. If you can master this… you can get everything you want.
For the first time ever, the Accessible Yoga Conference is coming to Germany. This three-day conference is designed to support yoga teachers that want to expand access to Yoga teachings for people with disabilities, chronic illness, seniors or others who may not feel comfortable in a regular yoga class. The conference takes place at the The Seehotel in Rheinsberg, a “barrier free hotel” on a lake Friday, October 19, 2018 from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm, Saturday, October 20, 2018 from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Sunday, October 21, 2018 from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. Details and registration can be found here.
Yoga teacher, and studio owner Lara Land is presenting at the conference and is here to share more about why this is such an important event.
Lara, what made you get involved in the Accessible Yoga Conference?
There are so many reasons I wanted to be involved. I’ve been on a personal mission to destroy exclusivity and elitism in yoga for over a decade, so when I discovered there was a whole organization dedicated to openness and inclusivity in yoga, I was immediately interested. I attended the Accessible Yoga Conference in 2017 New York City and was highly impressed. There were so many courses rich with information from those who have had lengthy experiences making yoga accessible to different marginalized groups. I wished I could attend each and every talk twice just to soak it all in. I later met founder Jivana when he gave a one day Accessible Yoga intensive at Omega Institute and felt even more drawn to his mission.
What will you be presenting at the Conference?
My workshop, Yoga Service; Creating Conscious Community, teaches how we as yoga teachers can open up the practice to go beyond the yoga studio and use it to form lasting bonds between humans. In the class we will discuss what it means to be in yoga service, uncover the hidden tendencies which make yoga feel unavailable to some, identify methods for shifting the dialogue and practices of yoga to include everyone, and establish a road map for creating conscious community through yoga, meditation & mindfulness. As teachers, it is necessary that we understand the objections some feel toward starting a yoga practice, and create a safe space for exploring them as we work together to create an alternative view.
Is this work you have done in your community?
Yes. In 2011, I founded Three and a Half Acres Yoga, a non-profit designed to bring yoga to marginalized populations as a tool for healing and empowerment. We partner with community organizations to add yoga to the services they provide. This means teaching in unconventional yoga spaces and using what we have, often just ourselves and some chairs, to share the benefits of yoga. Our classes are for everyone, no matter age, gender, ability, sexuality, sobriety, professional status, or living situation. We are a judgement free organization determined to share yoga with those who are open to receiving its benefits.
Sounds like a wonderful organization. Is there anything else you would like to share about yourself or the conference?
I just want to say how excited I am to be presenting just outside Berlin, one of my favorite cities in the world. I hope to be teaching more and more in Germany in the coming years and I am so looking forward to meeting new friends there. I’ll be bringing some copies of my new book, My Bliss Book, a daily planner that teaches how to envision and create a life of service to self and others. I can’t wait to share this with the European community.
Procrastination is a tricky issue for even the best of us. Here are some ways to conquer the avoidance habit and get ahead of the game:
- Get an accountability buddy. There is nothing like having someone there checking in on you to make sure you get things done on time. Choose that friend you can really count on to hold you to your word and not to let you slide or get away with your regular excuses. Set frequent in-person check-ins so you can’t hide.
- Set yourself urgent “Due By” dates. Remember the pressure of turning a school report in. Create that urgency by setting yourself a strict submit by date. Put reminders in your phone that you can’t ignore.
- Post your plans. There’s nothing like a big public promise to put some fire under you. I remember before I even signed the lease for Land Yoga announcing that I was opening a yoga studio in that spot. That’s a little risky, but hey, it worked! I recently announced a Land Yoga fix up by our anniversary date. I posted it everywhere. I wasn’t sure we would get it done in time, but we did. Our contractor felt the pressure of that public announcement as well. Nothing like putting yourself out there. The community feels involved and you won’t believe the lengths they will go to to help you.
- Set small intermediary goals on your way to your main goal. Every project can be broken down into smaller, less scary steps that will help you to ease your fear and get started. Say for instance, if you are working on a book. That’s a huge undertaking. If you say you are going to write a book by next year, when you sit down to write you’ll likely stare at the blank screen overwhelmed. Instead, break the task down into smaller goals and set deadlines on those. Make your chapter breakdown due tomorrow. That will get you moving!
- Start working now. Make a rule that you can never say, “I’ll start this tomorrow.” Tomorrow never comes. Instead do one small thing right now. Even the smallest action sets in motion future actions. When you are really stuck, find the minimum action you can do to move you forward. Then do it.
Here are some other tips.
Make sure you set a challenging but realistic date to accomplish your goal. If your goal is too far away you will have no motivation. Go back to #4 and make a sub-goal with a close deadline to focus on. Don’t make your goal unrealistically close either. You’ll know inside that it can’t be done and so you won’t even really try. You want to set yourself up for success. Too many failures teach the subconscious that we aren’t serious about keeping our word to ourselves.
Finally…I know there are a lot of you who believe you do your best work last minute under pressure, but this is not a sustainable method for growth. If that’s your style, it will get you far, but only so far. Eventually, lack of planning leads to reactive instead of strategic behavior. One day when you have a team to manage the whole operation will fall apart. Train yourself now in the habits that you will need for your future self! That’s how we grow!
Like this blog? Share it with a friend who could use it. Which strategy from above are you going to use to break the procrastination habit today? Write it in the comments below. Do you other strategies you use to combat procrastination? Share them in the comments below as well. Wishing you got your Bliss Book planner? Follow me at @laralandyoga for the full launch fall announcement and come to visit me at my last pop-up of the summer Sunday, July 15th at Red Rooster Harlem 10a-4p.
Jump start your manifestation today!
Want something badly and can’t wait to see it materialize, use these three practices which go all the way back to the Yoga Sutras circa 400 CE.
- Energize your desire. I know you think you could not want this thing more. Maybe you think about it day and night, anguishing over how to make it happen, boring your friends with constant obsession. The truth is this kind of wanting will fluctuate in time until you may even doubt you want it at all. That is unless you figure out WHY you want what you want.The greater and more world benefiting the WHY, the more likely you are to realize your desire. Each time you think of giving up, you’ll remember your purpose, the people who will benefit from your success, and you won’t be able to do anything but keep going.
Warning: Do not try to trick the Universe! The Universe knows everything. A WHY can be selfish even if the project is a charitable one. If you’re not really tapped into the feelings of suffering your offering alleviates, stop everything and go listen with an open heart to those who will benefit from the manifestation of your desire. Maybe the one who will benefit is you. WHY is this the way to heal your wound for eternity?
- Determine correct action. This comes from study. Knowing what actions to take is not a simple task. It is much like physics. First, you must understand yourself, your field, your audience, and your resources before you know which and precisely how many actions to take. Without making the time to study, you risk a myriad of misguided efforts that could result in your not achieving your desire and even in your moving further away from it. Take time to get to know yourself and the people and situations around you. Study yourself and others like there’s going to be a test. Keep notes on the results of different actions. Look for all the things you could have missed. Most of all, do not be afraid to slow down and do the prep work. When you pause to study and test you not only save yourself from future backpedaling but when you do decide to act, your actions have maximum impact. They are designed that way.
- Have a little faith. The opposite of doubt which often acts as a riptide pulling us under, faith is the buoy which holds us up. When we walk in it we stand taller, breathe deeper, and smile more freely. In short, we relax. In this relaxed state, we both attract more opportunities to us and are more able to see the possibilities that were always in view. Faith is the mother who brushes us off when we haven’t succeeded and reminds us manifestation occurs in Divine time, and that often when we don’t get what we want it’s because something better is on its way. Trust in her and keep her with you in every manifestation journey.
Do you have other manifestation tips? Write to me here in the comments.
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