Part of my job, as a yoga teacher, is to help people examine and move past their nagging self-doubts, which are really just hidden beliefs. The belief that I’m not strong enough or flexible enough to do X pose. The belief that I’ll never be “good.” The belief that there’s something inherently wrong with me and that this will never, ever work.
As a teacher, you can easily see what’s holding people back, and with encouragement, support, and a little bossiness, students can usually move past those self-doubts (for the time being, anyway, until they get to a new, harder, more challenging pose that asks more of them).
You, as a lawyer sitting at your desk, might roll your eyes and say: Sure, that’s great for the yoga mat, and for all your yoga students, but how does that help me?
Just pause for a moment and think about any beliefs you might have. Positive, negative, neutral–about anything in your life. Beliefs about money. Beliefs about relationships. Beliefs about the “perfect” job. Beliefs about what people think of you. Beliefs about happiness. Anything.
Now take one of those beliefs, just one, and ask yourself: What do I believe?
Let’s take on your job together: I believe that I need [fill in the blank here] at my job to be happy.
Maybe it’s more money. Maybe it’s more flex time. Maybe it’s fewer hours. Maybe it’s more clients. Maybe it’s a different boss. Maybe it’s more vacation. Up to you.
Whatever it is, now ask yourself: What happens if, just for one moment, I let go of this belief?
On the yoga mat, that moment is when magic happens. When people get out of their heads for just a second, and live in their breath and in the pose and in their bodies, just as they are. As a teacher, I live for that moment with people. That joy of being empty of all expectation, the lightness that comes with dropping those negative beliefs, the spaciousness I feel in their presence when they’re not trying to be anything. They’re just there, fully present, enjoying the moment.
You’ve probably picked your belief up again, and rolled your eyes at me again, but do me a favor: set down that belief again. Really set it down, and explore what’s there when you’re not holding onto it. Maybe even journal about it.
If you set your belief(s) down for a moment, you might be able to appreciate your current job for what it is now. Or maybe you’ll see that even if the belief isn’t directly correlative to your happiness, it’s something that you really want out of this (or your next) job. And then you can ask for it.
Carrying a lot of beliefs is like carrying a load of bricks in a sack over your shoulder. The more beliefs you set down, the lighter you feel. One by one, you set them down.
And then one day, there you are: brick-free, spacious and light, enjoying the moment. No yoga mat required.
Megan Grandinetti is a wellness & life coach, yoga teacher, and recovering attorney. Learn more about Megan, and receive a free 10-minute guided meditation, by visiting www.megangrandinettiyoga.com and signing up for her email list.