A post on balance

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I don't know about you, but keeping balance is one of my toughest challenges I face each day. Often it feels like every aspect of my life needs some sort of balancing act to keep it all together. Lately I have been running a small bar in Lagos, Portugal, and this adjustment to working by the moon and sleeping during the sun has really thrown me off kilter. This plus a combination of things in my life at the moment seem to be making me feel so ungrounded and unsteady, that it feels I cannot find my way back. 

I am writing this post yoga session, so my mind is more at ease currently and things seem to be looking up. Last night I managed to close on time, so I could be home by 3.30am, and get enough sleep before the 10am Iyengar inspired class at InLight Yoga & Massage Studio. This small win of making the morning class, has given me a fresh outlook and a bout of positive energy to find my way back to balance. It seems that life is so full of extremes, every where I look I see it, from people to buildings, to wealth and poverty, it feels that the middle ground is slowly sinking and we are left with extremes everywhere. Hurricanes and weather conditions destroying villages and cities, governments and egotistical leaders destroying lands and countries. It is all so extreme, it really is no wonder I find it hard to keep my balance. 

My life in particular involves a lot of uncertainty, a lot of movement and change. This has been okay for me and being a Kapha, I love the fact that I can be free to move and not get stuck into routine. But now a time has come and I feel lost with this movement, and I know it is because my balance has been altered. My yoga practice is taking the back burner as my sleep and my laziness and my Kapha qualities are taking control. My meditations are so full of thought and mind chitta that sitting for half an hour honestly feels like a lifetime. And although I am practicing my techniques, deep belly breathing for 10 counts here and there, or controlling my mind and attempting to think positive, I can feel the dishonesty of it. It is an effort and it feels so forced. Its like I know I need to do these things, so I do, but I am not really 'there'. Not really present. But where am I? Where is that mind? It is all over the show. It is with past lovers, and past loves. It is with old friends in other countries. It is with new friends in the future I am yet to meet, and with dreams of love's to come. And when it is here, in the present it feels that I am not happy with the situation, I am not content and I am wondering what is wrong.

Keeping the balance of light and dark is an ever lasting task, such a constant effort to fight off the shadows it is exhausting. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, they embrace the dark, the Yin side. Because they acknowledge its existence and know that we each need our down time. So maybe it is time to stop beating myself up for feeling lazy and quiet. Maybe this is because I am in need of some yin time, it may be the summer here in Europe, but in New Zealand it is the winter, the yin season where people can hibernate and recoup resting and recovering their bodies and spirits. I tend to skip winters, not a fan off the cold, but if I spend time inside when its a beautiful summers sunny day I beat myself up and feel guilty for not making the most out of it. So back to balance, finding that middle path of being able to have some hibernation time while also not getting into a funk and feeling so down on myself, or guilty that I am feeling down. Because this is part of it I suppose, we can only have the 'good' if there is the 'bad' to compare it too. And yes this labeling of 'good' or 'bad' is not such a great practice, but it is there, the light and the dark. Maybe it's okay for a while to have the darkness and let it wash over me. 

It all comes back to the practice in the end, practice of controlling the minds thoughts, even if I am not practicing every day at the moment, this is okay. A few times a week is still okay. Yoga is about letting go of judgement and of ridiculing oneself, so why am I doing this? In the end why am I acting so serious? Balance. All about balance. I think this is my karma in this life, to try understand a little more on balance, and how to find my equilibrium.

Love and light,

Tineke xx

My mother is always encouraging exercise and getting outside for some fresh air, so here is me during one of my lazy days, listening to her and going for a walk through the small village of Odiáxere in south Portugal. Finding very cool and dry landscapes in the midst of the summer.

My mother is always encouraging exercise and getting outside for some fresh air, so here is me during one of my lazy days, listening to her and going for a walk through the small village of Odiáxere in south Portugal. Finding very cool and dry landscapes in the midst of the summer.