Whenever you are serious, you are limiting your own power Whenever you are serious, you are limiting your own power
makes a casual remark that unexpectedly hits home.
The first time I attended a Feldenkrais class, last summer, I received some tips afterwards for practice at home, ending with: ‘don’t take it too serious, be curious and playful with it’. I felt the dots connect inside. I read it again. It began to sink in. I was about to take off on a Feldenkrais journey with serious effort, because I felt it could help me heal further. Serious business right? No. Healing is not a serious business. Read on…*
* I wrote this blog in the summer of 2020, but still think it can be an inspiration to many. So here I share it again ♥ Much love, Stephanie
Seriousness is seriously ineffective. Remember to be playful
The remark made
the journey through my inner world. I reflected on my current activities, my
approach towards it, my attitude towards it. All the same: I dive in with so
much vigor and strength, determined to put in maximal effort. For instance: I
practice yoga because it gives me so much more energy, strength, flexibility
ánd it improves my health (brains included). A great thing ain’t it? So I felt
I MUST practice yoga intensively. And there is the block. Where ‘must’ comes
in, the ceiling comes too. What you can achieve is suddenly limited by your
belief you have to try hard.
The attitude “I am determined to become more flexible” will never gain you flexibility for any effort put in comes from a place of force.
The sword always
cuts on two edges: putting in maximum effort is not necessarily a bad thing,
not at all. It’s all about the definition of effort. What is effort anyway? In
common society effort is seen as trying hard, using force by pushing limits,
doing all you can. How often were you not told to try your best? And if you
failed after that, there was always the “it’s okay, you tried hard and did your
best”. Didn’t we all learn that’s a good thing?
Force is focussed on matter alone
Effort is based on
the principle of force. Believing that force actually brings you somewhere
comes from a perspective that life is material in a solid world. For instance,
if we want something to move we have to push. Or pull. Or put in ever more
effort till the point where we drain ourselves and still haven’t achieved our
goals. And then we tell ourselves we should have put more effort in it. Or that
we weren’t strong enough.
Take the playful route
Yet why is it that
with a playful approach you achieve so much more with so little forceful
effort? Life is 0,01% matter and 99,9% energy. Called ‘nothing’ or ‘emptiness’
by some. We put in 100% energy in the 0,01% and try to improve our lives. Do we
miss the obvious here? What if we put our energy in the flow of the
other 99,9%? Would life not be so much simpler, more enjoyable and achieving
goals become much easier?
Improvement in any part of your life does not come from force, but from FLOW.
In the so-called
emptiness you will find the flow of life. An abundant stream of possibilities
and probabilities that you create into existence by your very awareness. You
give energy to what you focus on. And it is that focus what makes it happen.
Oh but you focussed on your goal but didn’t achieve it, did you? Has ALL of your focus been on your goal? Or did you have some unconscious beliefs that told you it wasn’t possible…
All of this implies that to embark on a playful journey, you have to let go of anything that stands in the way of ease. Worries, fear and other low emotions will pin your attention to what you don’t want. Beliefs in the opposite of what you think you focus on, are quite counterproductive. Like walking forward on a treadmill that rolls backwards…
To live playful, be playful. To be playful, make playfulness your belief.
Having seen that I
put in too much force and effort in my current healing process, it traveled
deeper within my being: why did I have so much trouble figuring out the right
direction for my business? Why is it hard for me to find customers and earn an
income? Here as well the answer lies not in what I do, not even how I do it.
It’s the mindset behind it. The believe that I have to put in maximum effort.
Why is my business not a playground? Why is my life not? Because I had the
belief that a business is a serious thing, you need to be serious about
business. On typing it, I feel I already ditched the belief. It feels like a
ridiculous idea now really.
If there is no fun, then why are you doing it?
Having embarked on
this reflection journey, it was easy to travel on and shine light on all of it:
in nearly every situation in my life I had used the approach of maximum forceful
effort. I have so much willpower that if I share 90% of it with others, I will
still have enough left 😉 . Is all that willpower necessary? Is it effective?
To an extend, yes, absolutely. It gave me the backbone I needed to make it
through the hardship I have been through.
There comes a moment when your biggest strength is your biggest block.
But at one point,
your biggest strength becomes your biggest block. There you need to let go. And
boy, I had already let go so much of it! But the root was still in my
being. However soft and gentle I can be for myself, in the core there is the
attitude of a forceful willpower. A feeling of I must do this, do that, achieve
this or that. I feel as if there is a time limit and no space for failure.
Which is laughable if I look back, since a lot didn’t work out as planned and
still I am alive, in ever better health and I still have a home and money to
Whatever you do, you will end up doing what you came for upon entering this lifetime
Then there is that
feeling I need to live life like others do. Like what is considered normal in
society. Like what is expected by the mass. With it comes fear: I want to live
life on my own terms, but what if I don’t make it? What if I can’t create the
life that supports my health instead of draining it to the point where I hardly
have any life quality? Again, I feel that I just let go of a lot. See here, if
we put it the other way ‘round, I’m saying: what if I have to live life in a
way that makes all the illness come back? Why on earth would I? There is no
reason for that to happen, other than that I give energy to that
thought. We all know that energy flows where attention goes…
Yes, I transformed these limiting beliefs. In fact, I don't even recognise them as having been mine anymore. I feel much much lighter these days and live from a place of faith and flow ♥