Today is as good a day as any to get in a workout. It’s as good a day as any for the workout to change you.
Something significant happens when you decide to exercise, when you summon the energy to physically exert yourself, when you make the decision to do something good for yourself, to not stay in the same state, or to take some time to take care of yourself – mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
Something even bigger happens when you decide to push yourself and your limits, like an expansion of being in those four key areas. Going through the motions isn’t enough. The workout doesn’t do it for you. It simply gives you an opportunity to rise to the occasion. The way you engage it makes the difference. You make the difference.
The challenges of life don’t seem so overwhelming when you conquer incredible physical challenges, when you summon your heart and all of the mental and physical strength in you.
Going through a challenging workout can be like a reset.
“The workout gives us the opportunity to empty ourselves, giving all of our heart and presence so we can receive renewed heart and spirit.” –Presence chapter p. 58
I’m reminded of how yoga classes end with savasana followed by rolling into fetal pose as a symbol of rebirth through the practice.
The reset or rebirth happens after fully immersing yourself and letting go of ego based thinking of past, future, and percieved problems of the world. It happens through the physical challenge and everything it calls upon. It happens when you pour your heart into the workout, when you allow the physical work to humble you and crack open your heart so the contents spill out. A welling. A release. I want you to be in tears by the end of your practice, not because of any physical pain, but because of what’s already in your heart waiting to come out, waiting to be released and cleansed.
There is a lot of crazy energy swirling around in the world right now. So many seem to be looking at everything outside of themselves.
The question to ask are:
What are you creating? What are you creating for yourself and the world around you? I’m not talking about some physical creation. I’m talking about your consciousness, your thoughts, your feelings, your words, your actions, everything. What are you creating?
Are you staying present? Or are you concocting negative or false future realities?
What is your perception? How are you seeing things? How are you seeing the world? What lenses or filters or delusions are you seeing through. This is known as the veil of delusion that all of us can experience in our lives, and it is one of the reasons we engage in spiritual practice.
What is your level of emotional maturity? How good are you at feeling what’s really going on deeper within? Hint: If all you feel is anger or anxiety or another surface level emotion, you may have a low level of emotional maturity. There is much more going on underneath, and that anger or anxiety may be connected to all of it. When you feel it and continue to feel the depths of your heart, the anger or anxiety is nowhere to be found.
What judgments are you carrying or making about others and the world? How judgmental are you being? Judgments are the opposite of an enlightened view.
Are you spreading negativity? Are you buying into the untruths and illusions of the world, the way everything is being presented to you or the way everything appears?
Are you dug in, stuck in your way of thinking? Are you wrapped up, enmeshed, attached? These are measures of ignorance, referring to ignorance as the opposite of a more enlightened way of being.
Whatever is going on with you, whatever you are experiencing, anger, stress, worry, fear, uncertainty, anxiety, depression, a lack of well being, a loss of joy, or perhaps feeling lost or overwhelmed, you can put all of it into your workout and let it go. You can allow the workout to clear your energy and clean your mental and emotional slate. You can allow the workout to change you.
Really, it can happen in any moment, because every moment you have the opportunity to be more conscious, more present, to create something better for yourself, to love more, to be free of whatever is weighing you down or holding you back from the highest levels of inner happiness and peace.
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