Recently, I have noticed that my ego has been out of control. On my morning commute, while sitting at the bus stop and talking to a friend of mine, I noticed that I said certain things because there was a person sitting next to me and I wanted them to think my life must be a certain way.
Later, as I was in yoga, accompanied by some students of mine, I found myself preoccupied with my “performance.” Constantly, I found myself wondering if others were looking at how I practiced yoga and found myself being very big and demonstrative, unnecessarily, in how I attempted various poses.
Later yet, instead of doing the work I knew I needed to get done, a though popped in my head that said, I’d worked hard enough for one day, “I deserved a break” – even though I had done nothing more than go to class and make a few phone calls to friends. All of my additional responsibilities had been avoided in favor of three hours spent watching television.
While we all need a bit of down time every now and again, and sometimes we do need to put on a bit of a show to make ourselves feel better, in my case my ego’s attempts at self-southing were attempting to tell me that I wasn’t happy with my life at that moment. And instead of addressing this dissatisfaction head on, I avoided it through attempts to make me seem more important in the eyes of others.
The question I have for you, the question I have been attempting to answer for myself is this: what are the signs that you are avoiding things in your life? Perhaps you check out within your relationships? Maybe avoidance comes up in your work life when you find yourself incapable of doing things that need to get done? Or perhaps it is within your own physical body where you either push yourself too hard to avoid the discomfort that comes with the healing of old wounds?
Take a moment to close your breathe and check in with yourself. How are you doing right now? Are you capable of being here right now or are you wanting to escape? Is this pattern working? Do you like living life this way? If not, can you trust that it is okay to let this habit go and to return to the present moment and breathe?
These questions are not intended to shame or guilt you into addressing your stuff. Instead they are presented as opportunities to find more health, joy, and light in our lives by letting go of the patterns that no longer serve us. When you’re ready, take a few moments to jot down any observations.