Create The Flow
Do You Recall A Day When You Were In A Flow?
Things moved smoothly from one place to another. The lights turned green as you got to the intersection. The line at the coffee store disappeared as you walked in. Your favorite song started to play on the car radio. Was it just chance?
Perhaps a day like this happened in the past as well, but you were too distracted to notice it. But on this day, when the sun was shining bright, and you were in a flow, you were mindful of every detail. You were aware of each moment. It didn’t bother you if the light was red; you paid attention to the song instead. You get my point.
Can We Always Live In Such Flow?
Maybe. Maybe not. Life is an amalgamation of opposites — good-bad, light-dark, birth-death. The duality of life touches all of us. We cannot escape it; we cannot control it. What we can control is our response to it. Challenges, disappointments, and heartbreaks will come into our lives. Can we acknowledge them and let them pass like white clouds on a sunny day? It’s not easy, but it is possible.
Your Body Can Help.
When you learn to move your body in ways that feel good, something shifts in your awareness. We primarily identify ourselves with the physical body. When you focus and learn to manage this physical layer, you become aware of the next layer, which is the energy body. It feels good to notice this energetic shift.
It is an even better feeling when you know that you are in control of this, and can lead to connecting an even deeper layer of our existence — the emotional body. You may say to yourself, “I feel good.” Just saying it and acknowledging that goodness within you brings another shift where you settle in to notice something else.
You begin to hear the sound of your own wisdom, the higher wisdom that you inherited from your ancestors. The all-knowing wisdom that you have touched occasionally, but perhaps not intentionally, which may have come to you in moments of distress guided you when needed, could you tap into that wisdom intentionally and purposefully?
You can learn to connect to your inherent wisdom willfully and with a purpose by finding ways to allow your body to move in a creative flow. Those who have learned how to move their bodies in a skilled and attentive way can probably relate to this. I was never an athlete or a dancer, but I felt like one when I started practicing yoga in my late 30s. Those tiny moments of being in the flow became a guiding light of wanting to do more of it. I wanted to dance on my yoga mat for longer. I didn’t want yoga to feel like a workout or a routine; I just wanted to flow and do what my body wanted to do. I listened to it and honored it at that moment.
Your dance does not have to be complex. It is your dance, you are the choreographer, and no one else is watching. Let your body flow. Try some simple yoga flows with movements you know in coordination with your breath or find a yoga teacher who can guide you. Sun salutations are a great way to stretch the body; you can create variations from the classical style to make it your own.
When you create this flow, you are the flow — planning a little and letting the rest happen, pushing a little and then backing off. It becomes a dance between effort and ease, stillness and movement.
In this process, the opposites find a balance, and you find grace. From this grace, you tap into the most subtle layer of your being, your inherent nature, the bliss-body of Ananda, the nature of sattva or purity. Feel the joy, the love, the healing, and be in a state of flow!
Allow time for this process to unfold, as all good things in life take time. You water a plant all year long, and the fruit comes only when the season is right. But the plant requires water, sun, and nourishing earth all year long for the fruit to grow.
Nourish and nurture your body in more than one way. Create a routine, eat healthy foods, read inspirational texts, watch nature happen. Step on your mat and allow yourself to flow. The rest will take care of itself.
Ritu Kapur is an occupational therapist and a yoga teacher. She has been teaching yoga to people of all ages and abilities for over 12 years and is offering a 5-week online course to help you create your own dedicated personal yoga practice beginning September 25. Contact Ritu at email@example.com or visit www.sohum.org.