I got this quote from a friend just this morning: “Her win does not mean you lose. Just clap for her. You’re not even in the same race.”
This friend is someone who knows me and sees me. She cheers for me. She celebrates my wins and I celebrate hers. We have very different races we are running, but we run them together.
It’s a good reminder that like yoga, life is not a competition with ANYONE other than your best self. When we get clear about who we are “doing” and who we want to “be”, there may be a divide. I have found that divide to be the cause of a mental shift toward external competition… and with competition came a lot of judgment…
Toward myself …
And then came the fear.
“You are not enough.”
“You don’t have enough.”
Competition, according to sociology/anthropology, developed in the human culture along side collaboration. Think about that. We learned to compete as we learned to work together. They go hand in hand. Although neither is bad, neither is perfectly good either. We need both, and we need to use and apply them wisely.
Skillful, wise action. That’s TAPAS.
Tapas can be translated to heat, fire, transformation. But as a practice (theory in action), it’s knowing when to light the fire (wake up, get up and take action on the day/challenge) and when to stomp it out (rest, sleep, let go).
When our skill at discerning the difference is not well developed or our ability to feel safe in the process is jeopardized, our Sympathetic Nervous System is activated. Igniting our “Fight or Flight”, whether we attack or freeze, we are in a state of defense.
It is fear that drives defensive competition and the Me vs You, Us vs Them mentality.
We are meant to do life in connection, in collaboration … yes with a sprinkling of competition to keep us alive and engaged. But CONNECTION FIRST.
If you are looking for greater connection, that is the practice of yoga.
No, virtual yoga isn’t my favorite, but it’s better than no yoga. And virtual Circles aren’t my best idea either, but they are working. AND they’re are working in some ways better than the regular in-studio events. WHY? Because we are meant for connection. We need connection more than ever. And with virtual Circles, we can connect no matter where we are in the world!
It is hope that brings us to collaborate, to cooperate, to connect. We need each other to overcome the obstacles of the day. But it is love in that shared experience that allows us to serve and care for one another… To clap for each other’s wins and lift one another up when we fall.
I want to spend my time and energy looking for ways to collaborate, cooperate, celebrate, connect and cheer you on. DO you hear me clapping for YOU?