fitness · habits · motivation · self care

Go Team! January 14: What can you notice?

When I was doing yesterday’s video from Yoga with Adriene’s current series ‘Move’ and she reminded us to pay attention to HOW we were moving I suddenly realized that I have a lot more mobility in my upper back that I did when I started the series.

It has only been 12 days of practice so I wasn’t expecting any results yet. I doubt that there’s any visible change in my movements or my mobility but something good is definitely happening. And if Adriene hadn’t prompted me to notice, I may not have felt that extra mobility right at the base of my neck.

That feeling, in turn, prompted me to notice a few more differences in my movements. My ankles are moving with slightly more ease. It’s a little easier for me to go deeper into downward dog. All kinds of small differences that I hadn’t recognized until I was prompted to notice.

So, I wanted to prompt you to notice some small things about your practice today.

Is there anything different about how you are sitting in meditation? How does your body feel while you are there? Are your thoughts behaving any differently?

If you have a physical practice, have you noticed any differences in your movements or in your strength? You probably aren’t breaking any world records at this point but I’ll bet some things feel a bit easier or more natural or at least little less hard.

If you are trying to rest more or to be more mindful, can you notice any difference in the details of your practice?

If you are at the ‘trying to figure things out’ stage, have you noticed any softening around your concept of what would be useful to do? Or around your steps toward clearing time or space for your planned routines? Is your brain starting to maybe, perhaps, kind of, work its way around to considering the idea of making a low-key plan?

It’s worth your time and energy to notice any and all changes that you are experiencing.

This is part of focusing on the process of change rather than on a specific result. Noticing and celebrating positive changes (or noticing and adjusting things that aren’t working) lets you be more in charge of your routines (notice that I didn’t say in control!) and shifts your focus away from a distant future and into what’s happening today.

Noticing lets you celebrate every stage of expanding your comfort zone.**

It lets you enjoy even the smallest difference in your capacity, ability, or strength.

And even though your efforts ALWAYS count, having a little bit of evidence can really reinforce that message.

So, Team, today, I invite you to notice even the smallest of changes and celebrate them.

Whether you sat for an extra second of meditation before checking the timer, or you took one extra step, or your outstretched fingers are one iota closer to your toes. Or if your hips are more comfortable when you sit down, or you have a little more energy in the afternoon, or you feel a bit calmer behind the wheel. It all matters, it all counts, and it is all worth noticing.

To celebrate your small efforts, your small victories, and your small changes, here are three small gold stars that I drew earlier today. I had so much fun with yesterday’s burst of creativity that I decided to give it another whirl today.

A small ink drawing of three stacks of coloured shapes on strings with a gold star at the end of each one. The background is white with green dots.
Apparently, these drawings on strings are called dangles, which I think is a fun name for them. Image description: A drawing I made of three gold stars on individual strings. Each star has a small stack of shapes on top of it, an orange triangle, a purple square, and a red circle, in a different order. The background is white speckled with green.

*I like to consider myself as expanding my comfort zone rather than stepping outside of it. I know it is really a matter of semantics but word choice matters (it matters A LOT to me.) The idea of expanding my zone of comfort has a lot more appeal than being forced outside of that zone. I can tolerate discomfort in the name of growth but I sure as hell don’t want to be told that I have to leave all comfort behind in the process. Your mileage may vary so feel free to expand your comfort zone or to step outside if it, whichever works for you!

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.