I’m pretty sure we all suffer from them. And when they hit us, we feel blindsided. They are our nemesis thoughts. The asshole critic that lives in our own head. That never shuts up. My critic, my nemesis thoughts, get more aggressive, more ugly, more hateful when I ignore them. They spiral out of control. They break my spirit. Dim my light. I’m sick of them.
Today on my mat, in a practice that I thought would feel good in my body and wouldn’t bring up much of anything, a few of these thoughts came up. I felt them hit my body full force. I stopped my practice. I wasted some time by drinking some tea. I almost gave up.
But I didn’t. In a very brief moment, the voice of Ana Forrest snuck in. She saw me. And she reminded me that I learned a long time ago that those thoughts are lies. To jump on a popular hashtag, they are #alternativefacts.
In Forrest Yoga, we teach to an apex pose – it’s the pose in the sequence that we warm the body up for, work on opening and creating space for, and is the “most advanced” pose of class. My apex today was staying on my mat. That one brief respite when Ana very much spoke the exact opposite of my nemesis gave me the courage to say those words for myself. I cried. And I tried to not cry. But I cried more.
My apex today was showing up for myself. Because I’m worth it. Because my students are worth it. My teacher is worth it. My friends/family are worth. I will continue to show up. I will have my moments where my nemesis thought is loud, abrasive, ugly. But someone, in that moment, will sneak into my mind and remind me – the toughest work is often done with another. And I am not alone.
***I film practices to take pictures from often; I take pictures throughout practice. This picture is that moment when the thought landed. When I thought I wasn’t worth ….