Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Ten days without words or movement...

So I'm giddy right now, which I'm attributing to the ten minutes of nice weather we had this morning, and the fact that 'best place to work' finally got back to me about when and with whom I'll be interviewing in step #67 of the hiring process. Also, its because I'm rather chuffed to find that my favorite blogger, Kate Hutchinson, has been reading my blog. Nick led me to Kate's blog a few months ago ("hey babe, look, someone else is trying to find a job and trying not to sell out"), and I've been an avid reader since. And while I'd love to just talk about her for this entire entry, that is not the point.

Yesterday Kate was blogging a tiny bit about the wonders of going to the gym, and I couldn't agree more. My gym obsession began in my teens when I was trying so hard to still fit into my tutus for ballet, but a serious foray into yoga made me start re-thinking the true aim of physical fitness. In college, I found that working out centered my mind, calmed my jitters, and energized me. Now it has become the constant and controllable factor in a life that includes an erratic schedule at a crazy job, a de-humanizing career search, and equally persuasive parents and boyfriend who live on opposite coasts.

Last night, at my usual Monday yoga class at the gym (my gym has great yoga, honest), the teacher had recently returned from an interesting retreat. It was ten days long, and the constraints were this: no speaking until the last day, no yoga (!), and one must sit perfectly still for ten hours each day, for 90 minutes at a time. She was positively glowing as she told us about what was the most physically challenging practice of her life, which is impressive considering this was coming from an extremely strong and disciplined yogi. Our practice for class was, naturally, based upon the principles of the retreat and was thus extremely difficult. Our asanas were held for several minutes at a time, completely without fidgeting and large adjustments.

What she explained, and what I found in this intense practice, is that the thinking shifts. Instead of thinking "Oh goodness, this is taking forever, this is never going to end, I need to stop" you suddenly accept "This is difficult, but it will end; this difficult position I am in will change at some point". Simple in theory, but difficult in practice, this philosophy is a sort of release and surrender to things in life which you cannot control but logically cannot last forever.

I went to sleep last night realizing that, logically, given my credentials and passion I cannot go career-less forever. My circumstances will change. Accepting these things makes it much easier to take.

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