Obstacle or Opportunity

One of my favorite things about my new neighborhood is that I can walk to so many wonderful places. This morning outside it was crisp but, there was no sign of rain. So as I was walking toward one of my favorite coffee shops on my way to teach, I was surprised by the drop I felt on my head. I immediately thought..."oh no! a bird just pooped on my head. sigh...".

Resisting the urge to reach up and confirm said poop, I began to walk a bit faster so that I could get to the bathroom and assess the damage. During this short, but brisk walk, I wondered if it would begin to smell while I was teaching if I couldn't get it all out. I fretted over the sheer ickiness of cleaning it up. I kicked myself for not wearing a hat. And I was certain that everyone could see poop drizzling down my locs, so I was feeling embarrassed.

Finally, arriving at my studio, I rushed to the nearest mirror and... there was no poop. But the threat of poop was enough. And the self inflicted damage was done.

I had just wasted nearly 10 minutes of my life worrying about something that hadn't happened. I could have spent those 10 minutes enjoying the beauty around me. I could have spent them petting the cute pup I had whisked past. I could have spent those few minutes grabbing a chai to warm my bones. But I missed all of that. 

So why do we spiral into a frenzy causing ourselves to miss the finer moments of 'the here and now'? This time, I'm gonna blame my amygdala.

The amygdala is a tiny mass imbedded deep in your brain and it's primary job is to look for danger. In the more primitive versions of ourselves, this was critical to our survival because EVERYTHING was a threat. It was an eat or be eaten situation...so your amygdala would help get your body prepared to fight or flee.

Today, the amygdala's response mechanisms are still in full effect and it can effect how we choose to react to the hiccups in our day to day lives. And let's be real...there are plenty of hiccups in our day to day lives. Our yoga practice is like a work around...our practice is designed to help us pull back and consider the situation from various angles...to provide the breath between your feelings and your reactions. So the next time a little bird offers you a gift...consider it fertilizer and grow with it ;-)

photo by Barth Bailey on unsplash