During my Friday Power Flow classes, we have been talking a lot about celebration and what it feels like in the body--Friday is a great time to reflect on your week and each moment to find a little celebration in your heart. Celebrating can look like different things to different people depending on where and what they are celebrating. Sometimes we celebrate with rituals--taking a hot bath, getting a massage, or popping some bubbly with a group of friends. In any case, I think we can all agree that it feels good to celebrate.
I find myself trying to celebrate more on my yoga mat these days. Of course this practice ebbs and flows just like anything, but here’s the main gist: when I catch myself getting frustrated about not being able to do certain things on my mat, I try to flip it into something I can celebrate. First and foremost, I made it to the mat! Secondly, everything is worth celebrating. Whether you have gone one centimeter deeper in a stretch, nailed a new pose, tried something you know you can’t do yet or even backed off a little--you listened to your body and that is worth celebrating! Your body is always worth celebrating.
Things I like to celebrate: spending an afternoon with friends or family, talking to the checkout clerk at the grocery store (or any other sweet interaction with a stranger), trying a new yoga pose, cuddling with my doggie, taking a walk and enjoying the weather (rain or shine), taking a picture of a mother and daughter in the Duke Gardens, helping someone find where they parked their car, someone helping me find my keys--all of these moments connect us to our humanity, to the universal energy that flows between us. As the french like to call it, the "joie de vivre." A happiness and excitement about life.
Whether I am celebrating myself, my friends, or something else, I get a very similar feeling in body. I start to feel very alive. I feel some tingling in my chest, the corners of my mouth start to rise a little, and my blood seems to run a little more smoothly. If I could put these feelings into words, they would be joy, gratitude, fulfillment, pride, happiness, excitement, trust, relief, and warmth.
One of the nice things about celebration (much like any other sensation) is that you can cultivate it no matter what you are doing--there is always something to celebrate! Similar to thinking of things that you are grateful for, you can simply think of some things that are worth celebrating. There are thousands of moments that we can take time to honor and celebrate. It is just a matter of finding them and paying attention to them. Next time you are feeling frustrated, try tapping into the powerful energy of celebration and perhaps it will help you feel lighter and happier.