I remember as a kid, the excitement of receiving a new notebook or sketchbook. Those blank white pages held possibility, undisturbed by the scribbles of the past. I received the notebook pictured here from a colleague in Japan. Moving into 2014, this book will hold notes, reflections and reminders for my yoga practice.
I don't make new year's resolutions, but I do place great importance on process. Whatever grand aspirations we have for the new year, they are as blank as the pages in this book until we act. To write a book one must go through the process of writing. To master a piece of music, one must spend countless hours in rehearsal. My students often tell me how amazing it is to see me demonstrate headstand in the center of the room while speaking instructions to the class. To effortlessly stand on my head in the center of a room required years of practice. What they haven't seen is all the times I tumbled over. All of the times I was out of alignment, shaking, overworking, and unable to maintain the pose for more than 20 seconds. The good stuff, the opportunity to learn, it comes from the process. We must move through the practice, not around it.
As I move forward into 2014 I will scribble all over this book. I'll make mistakes and cross things out, and re-write the same sentence nine different ways. I'll remind myself that it's not about getting it perfect. It's about participating attentively, becoming more observant and more receptive. In the immortal words of Pattabhi Jois, “Practice and all is coming.”
Happy 2014 my friends! Take care of yourself and each other.
May you be blessed with love, health, and peace.