In October, I will be starting a two month teacher training program at Kula Yoga Project and I could not be more excited! It's a combination of that butterfly feeling of embarking on a new journey and the fact that everything I've read so far is utterly fascinating. Here is a gem that I came across a couple days ago that I can't stop thinking about from The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali,
"An Earthquake might decimate the entire world, but we need not bother about the future. Nor should we worry about the past. It has already gone. To be happy this minute is in our hands."
How true this is! It has taken many years for me to learn this lesson and I am still learning it every day! I am so incredibly grateful for my job as a bartender and for the years spent in restaurants teaching me this lesson over and over and over and over and over and over and over. I used to get SO MAD at the smallest things that would happen, even when I knew I had no control over it. Don't get me wrong, there are still days and times when I struggle with this, but what is it really that I can control? I have no power over how busy or slow the restaurant is, if a tourist family or a big spending regular walks in, what family meal is going to be, how quickly the kitchen is making food, etc. What I can control is my emotions and reactions to what's happening in the environment around me. Occasionally, a co-worker will say to me, "Why are you so happy? Why are you always smiling?" and I shrug and say in return, "Why not?". It is a choice to be happy and I've learned from experience that it is much, much easier than being anxious and angry. I used to be that person! It would take me so long to "wind down" from the anxieties and stresses of work. I would vent and vent and vent to Josh about all the little things that went wrong and why I don't like so-and-so and blah blah blah. Again, I'm not perfect at all and there are still days when I go to the "dark side" and can't seen to get back for a while, but it is a conscious choice to be happy and it takes practice. When I'm "in the weeds", my initial thoughts are, "I'm not going to get to that guest in time/They are going to be mad/Can't they see I'm busy?"(worry, anxiety, anger). Then, I take a mental moment to re-assess: "I'm grateful to even have a job and be this busy/All I can do is try my best and be content in my own efforts"(gratitude, contentment, joy). When we are slow, I am indebted to all of my co-worker who are pretty rad and who share their stories and time openly and warmly with me. There is always a way to change the progression of thoughts in the mind. It takes time and practice. You cannot control the future. You cannot change the past. Only You, your Self, in this exact moment, is what you have influence over. What do you choose?