Here we are at Day 31!
We’ve made it all the way through January and we’ve kept returning to our plan to expand our lives by building a new habit.
Maybe you have been diligently doing your practice exactly as planned.
Maybe you are still figuring out how to start or even what to start.
Maybe you are somewhere in the middle with some successes and some challenges and a few starts and stops.
All of those variations on habit-building are perfectly ok.
Yes, the person who could follow their plan diligently might be ‘ahead’ of the person who is still figuring things out but that’s only a technicality. Those two people aren’t in a race, their efforts can’t really be compared – they are two different people with two different backgrounds living two different lives.
They each have to find their own way forward and both of their efforts matter.
Sure, it is frustrating when all of your efforts are about getting to the mat and (as far as you can tell, at least) someone’s else’s efforts don’t really start until they step on to the mat. But your efforts to get to the mat count, even if they are invisible so far. Those efforts WILL pay off over time because you will be building a practice that works for you, whatever form that may take.
I’d rather see you figure out how to celebrate your efforts, to accept your gold stars, and to keep building your own practice, to recognize where you are in your own story, instead of letting frustration deter you. I know that working around the frustration requires effort in itself, it’s not easy, but it can be done and I believe that you can do it.
It seems a bit silly but one of the most powerful tools I employ when I am frustrated is the word yet. In fact, I wrote a whole post about it last year: Say Yet (that’s not a typo)
Ok, to be completely accurate, first I fume and stomp and complain a bit and when that initial annoyance has settled, then I get into my yets.
‘I can’t land the kick in that pattern…yet.’
‘I can’t keep my balance on my right foot in tree pose…yet.’
I haven’t been able to stretch after lunch…yet.’
Like I said in last year’s post linked above, the word yet adds an element of possibility, the idea that my capacity for that skill can grow, that I may be able to do it in the future.
Using ‘yet’ helps me remember that I might be in the beginning or the middle of my story instead of the end.
So, what’s next?
This is my last Go Team! post in this series and I have enjoyed showing up each day to remind you to be kind to yourself as you do your practices and build your habit. It’s been fun to explore my ideas around how to encourage you and I hope that you have been collecting your gold stars for your efforts throughout the month.
I won’t be posting daily from now on but I will create a Go Team post once a month to remind you that your efforts matter.
I have no way to know where you are in your practice and how you plan to continue from here but I want to remind you that leaping, forging, or trudging ahead are all valid ways to proceed.
And so is resting while you recover or while you figure things out. And it’s also valid to change direction based on new information, new plans, or because you want something different than you thought you did.
However you are proceeding, please default to self-kindness in the process.
You are doing the best you can with the resources you have and that is something to be celebrated.
Speaking of which, here is your gold star for today and with this star, I celebrate you – your efforts, your ideas, your plans, your detours, the things you have figured out and the things that you are still uncovering.
You matter. What you want matters. Your efforts matter.
Your hard work counts.
Need a reminder to be kind to yourself while you keep building your habits?
You can see all of my Go Team! posts from this January, last January and throughout 2021 by clicking this link: Go Team! and I have linked all of this year’s posts (except this one!) below:
January 1: New Year, Same You
January 2: Go Easy
January 3: Pick a Time
January 4: Consistency Beats Perfection
January 5: Or Something Better
January 6: Beyond Compare
January 7: Focus on what you CAN do today
January 8: Powerful Attention
January 9: Feelings: Part 1
January 10: Feelings: Part 2 of 3
January 11: Feelings: Part 3 of 3
January 12: Go Ahead and Grumble
January 13: Give yourself the things you need to feel good
January 14: What can you notice?
January 15: Go easy on yourself
January 16: You’re not the problem
January 17: Keeping Perspective
January 18: Give yourself some credit
January 19: Create a ritual
January 20: You’re worth it
January 21: Support Systems
January 22: Encourage Yourself
January 23: When your some is your all
January 24: What if you always dread your practice?
January: 25: Who (else) is on your team?
January 26: Remember the basics
January 27: Stories (Part 1 of 3: the story of these posts)
January 28: Your Internal Story (Part 2 of 3)
January 29: Your Story Arc (Part 3 of 3)
January 30: Match your expectations to your capacity
About the Go Team! posts:
For the second year in a row, I’ll be posting a Go Team! message every day in January to encourage us as we build new habits or maintain existing ones. It’s cumbersome to try to include every possibility in every sentence so please assume that I am offering you kindness, understanding, and encouragement for your efforts right now. You matter, your needs matter, and your efforts count, no matter where you are applying them. You are doing the best you can, with the resources you have, in all kinds of difficult situations and I wish you ease. ⭐💚 PS – Some of the posts for this year may be similar to posts from last year but I think we can roll with it.